An exciting milestone was realised yesterday when the first Landing Helicopter Dock (LHD) ship currently being built for Australian Defence, entered Sydney Harbour for the first time.
NUSHIP Canberra, the first of two LHDs being built for the Australian Defence Force entered Sydney after her first contractor trials and testing at sea.
The biggest ship ever built for Navy, she was a formidable sight as she proceeded into Fleet Base East, Sydney.
Defence Materiel Organisation’s LHD Project Manager, Captain Craig Bourke said the ship was visiting Sydney to use the dry dock.
“The ship is scheduled to undertake a commercial docking in the Dry Dock in Sydney, to receive a hull clean and final paint before proceeding to sea and returning to Williamstown to commence the final phase of Contractor sea trials involving communications and combat systems.
“The first set of Contractor sea trials have been focussed on tuning the propulsion system and testing and trialling the hull, mechanical and electrical systems of the vessel,” Captain Bourke said.
NUSHIP Canberra’s Commanding Officer, Captain Jonathan Sadleir said a number of the ship’s company were also embarked in the ship to witness the first set of Contractor sea trials.
“The ship had representatives from all departments observing the trials, which has provided an excellent opportunity to build on their training and knowledge. NUSHIP Canberra chefs provided the meals for everyone onboard during the sea trials and did a great job.
“To see the ship come into Sydney today for the first time is a big milestone and is really exciting for the ship’s company,” Captain Sadleir said.
During her visit to Sydney, in addition to contractor work, the ship’s company will be carrying out important familiarisation and induction training in preparation to take responsibility when BAE Systems hand the ship over to Defence.
Press Release, March 14, 2014; Image: Australian Navy