Raytheon Wins Contract for Australian SEA 4000 AEGIS Destroyers
Subject to final contract negotiations, Raytheon Australia has beaten out rivals BAE systems and Saab systems to become the Project Combat System-System Engineer for Australia’s $4.6 billion ($6 billion Australian) program to build three SEA 4000 Air Warfare Destroyers.
As part of the contract, Raytheon will undertake studies for the Commonwealth on Combat System Integration and Risk Reduction. That contract is valued at approximately $15 Million. “This important task will assist Defence to gain a better understanding of different combat system design options for Cabinet consideration later this year,” said Australian Defence Minister Robert Hill. The decision to conduct the studies is consistent with the Government’s implementation of the Kinnaird Review’s recommendation that increased planning and analysis be undertaken during the early stages of defense projects.
The conduct of the evaluation and selection of Raytheon Australia has been reviewed by the Air Warfare Destroyers Program Probity Advisers, who have confirmed the process was fair and equitable.
Raytheon Australia is a Canberra-based company that employs over 1,000 people in six different locations, and is one of the largest defense electronic companies in Australia. Raytheon has also performed mission systems integration in Australia for the Collins Class Submarines Replacement Combat System, and Electronic Warfare Training Services for the Australian Defence Force, as well as defensive systems integration for the U.S. Navy’s DD (X) destroyers, LPD-17 amphibious ships, and CVN 21 carriers.
This contract is also in line with the Government’s Skilling Australia’s Defence Industry program to boost Australia’s skills in combat system integration and software engineering and development. The air warfare destroyers project will provide significant opportunities for Australian industry, including the construction of these ships in Australia and opportunities in sub-systems. Indeed, The construction of the three Air Warfare Destroyers, which will include the Aegis combat system, will be one of the most significant shipbuilding projects undertaken in Australia to date.
About the Project
Project SEA 4000 – Air Warfare Destroyer (AWD), has been formed to deliver three air-defence capable ships that were called for in The Defence White Paper 2000, and re-emphasised in the Defence Capability Plan of 2003.
The SEA 4000’s AEGIS combat system will provide significantly increased protection from air attack for troops being transported and deployed, long-range air warfare defence for Royal Australian Navy task groups, and a coordinated air picture for fighter and surveillance aircraft. In-service with the U.S., Japanese and Spanish navies and soon to be introduced into the South Korean and Norwegian fleets as well, the AEGIS system is capable of detecting and defeating multiple hostile aircraft and missiles at ranges in excess of 150 km.
The proposed acquisition strategy is a “Design Driven” approach. Under this acquisition strategy, the Commonwealth will contract separately for design and construction. A designer will be contracted to produce a ship design to meet specified requirements and then a shipbuilder contracted to build that design. Defence will recommend the detail of the total combined combat system and the preferred design for the air warfare destroyers in mid-2005, and the contract for the ship-builder has yet to be announced.
Defence is currently evaluating the three ship designer proposals from Blohm +Voss, Gibbs & Cox, and Izar, which closed on 24 November 2004. Proposals to build the ships have been received from ASC Shipbuilding, Northrop Grumman Ship Systems and Tenix Defence.
The management of this Project will be performed by the AWDPO, located in Canberra and under the leadership of the Air Warfare Destroyer Program Manager using structured project management methodologies and input from an Integrated Product Team (IPT) drawn from the Defence Materiel Organisation, Capability Systems, DSTO and Navy. SEA 4000 will be managed as four distinct phases. These phases are; Phase 1 (Project Definition), Phase 2 (Design), Phase 3 (Build) and Phase 4 (Test and Acceptance).
The SEA 4000 Air Warfare destroyers are scheduled to begin entering service with the Royal Australian Navy in 2013.
- News Release: Raytheon Selected as Combat System-System Engineer for the Australian Navy’s New Air Warfare Destroyers
- SEA 4000 Air Warfare Destroyer: Official Program Site and MoD page.
- Air Warfare Destroyer Alliance: contractor team site
- Government Release: Step Forward for AWD Combat System Contract
- Government Release: Bids to Build Air Warfare Destroyers Announced
- AEGIS Combat system for Air Warfare Destroyers