In particular, the HMAS Anzac was commanded by a female captain, Lieutenant Colonel HQ Belinda Wood, one of the female commanders in the Royal Australian Navy.
HMAS Anzac, one of the powerful warships in the Royal Australian Navy, she is the lead ship of the Anzac-class frigates in use with the Royal Australian Navy and the Royal New Zealand Navy. The ship is equipped with powerful arsenal to be able to attack or defend comprehensively.
In the mid-1980s, the Royal Australian Navy planned to replace six River-class destroyer escorts, and the New Surface Combatant project was launched. The Australian shipbuilding industry was thought to be incapable of warship design, so the Royal Australian Navy decided to take a proven foreign design and modify it.
Around the same time, the Royal New Zealand Navy was looking to replace four Leander-class frigates; a deterioration in New Zealand and United States relations, the need to improve alliances with nearby nations, and the commonalities between the Royal Australian Navy and Royal New Zealand Navy ships’ requirements led the two nations to begin collaborating on the acquisition in 1987. Tenders were requested by the Anzac Ship Project, and by 1989, the Australians ordered eight ships, while New Zealand ordered two.
HMAS Anzac, the first ship of the class was laid down at Williamstown, Victoria on November 5, 1993. Anzac was commissioned into the Royal Australian Navy at Station Pier in Melbourne on May 18, 1996. The ship’s name is in recognition of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps as Anzac and her number was FFH-150.
The HMAS Anzac’s design was based on the German Meko 200 frigate, modified to meet Australian specifications and maximise the use of locally built equipment. The Meko concept uses modular construction techniques. The advantage of the concept is the parallel production of the hull and superstructure and its equipment. The resulting partially outfitted modules can be easily erected on the slipway. The level of outfitting at launch is higher than can be achieved using traditional shipbuilding methods.
The ship was assembled from six hull modules and six superstructure modules, the result was a warship with a full load displacement of 3,600 tons, the overall length is 118m with a beam of 14.8m, and a full load draught of 4.35m.
A Combined Diesel or Gas propulsion machinery layout is used, with a single, 30,172 horsepower General Electric LM2500-30 gas turbine and two 8,840 horsepower MTU 12V1163 TB83 diesel engines driving the ship’s two controllable-pitch propellers. Maximum speed is 27 knots, and maximum range is over 6,000 nautical miles at 18 knots; about 50% greater than other Meko 200 designs. HMAS Anzac’s crew consists of 22 officers and 141 sailors and 16 government worker or air crew.
HMAS Anzac is a long-range frigate capable of air defence, surface and undersea warfare, surveillance, reconnaissance and interdiction. The ship is capable of countering simultaneous threats from the air, surface and sub-surface.
The ships’ main armament comprises one 127mm Mk 45 Mod 2 gun capable of firing 20 rounds per minute, supplemented by an eight-cell Mark 41 vertical launch system for RIM-7 Sea Sparrow or RIM-162 Evolved Sea Sparrow missiles, two 12.7mm machine guns, and two Mark 32 triple torpedo tube sets. The ship’s other defence systems include the Nulka active missile decoy system, offboard chaff and a torpedo countermeasures system.
The Anzac is arranged a helicopter flight deck at the stern, she can embark a multi-role Sikorsky S-70B-2 Seahawk helicopter to enhance anti-submarine, anti-surface warfare and Search and Rescue capabilities. Embarkation of a helicopter also provides the ship with the capability to deliver air-launched torpedoes.
The frigate is fitted with an advanced package of air surveillance radars, omni-directional hull mounted sonar and electronic support systems which interface with a state-of-the-art combat data system. Air search is by Raytheon SPS-49 ANZ radar, the I-band navigation radar is the Atlas Electronik 9600 ARPA.
Anzac is the third Royal Australian Navy ship to carry the name of an Australian legend. Named after the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps during the First World War, the Anzacs landed on the Gallipoli Peninsula as part of a larger Allied Force on 25 April 1915, meeting fierce resistance from the Turkish defenders. The campaign dragged on for a further eight months of hellish trench warfare, giving berth to a legend of endurance, selflessness, dedication to duty and mateship in the most demanding of environments.
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It is a shared memory of common sacrifice for the nations involved, regardless of nationality or religion, providing an enduring example for the men and women of the Australian Defence Force and Australian’s as a whole. Anzac Day is annually commemorated in Australia on April 25. As such, Anzac proudly bears her name underpinned by the motto, United We Stand.
Notable events Anzac participated in have included deployments to the Arabian Gulf, culminating in Naval Gunfire Support of British Royal Marines landings on Al Faw Peninsula, Iraq in 2003. Anzac has also successfully contributed to Fisheries Protection, Border Protection and Maritime Rescue Operations through her years of service.
In 2015 Anzac participated in NORTHERN TRIDENT 2015, where she took part in the commemorative events for the 100th Anniversary of the ANZAC landings at Anzac Cove, Gallipoli.