Up to 12 Corvettes for Australian Navy?
A new fleet of 10-12 small but powerful warships to give the navy a rapid-firepower boost in response to growing strategic threats is being looked at by the defence strategic review.
The corvette-style ships, armed with missiles, canons and potentially anti-submarine torpedoes, are being considered for a total price of about $5-6 billion.
The move comes amid a growing realisation in Defence that the navy’s lightly armed offshore patrol boats are no longer sufficient, given the strength of the Chinese navy and its “grey zone” maritime militia.
In other news, Austal has started to install equipment to enable the de-commissioned HMAS Maitland, renamed Sentinel, to become an autonomous, remotely controlled vessel as part of a patrol boat autonomy trial with sea trials set to start in about 12 months’ time.
Navy launches its own ‘Perisher’ submariners course.