HMAS Darwin (FFG 04)
|Namesake:||City of Darwin|
|Builder:||Todd Pacific Shipyards, Seattle, Washington|
|Laid down:||3 July 1981|
|Launched:||26 March 1982|
|Commissioned:||21 July 1984|
|Nickname:||FFG-44 (US hull designation during construction)|
East Timor 1999
Persian Gulf 2002-03
|Status:||Active as of 2014|
|General characteristics (post-refit)|
|Class & type:||Adelaide class guided missile frigate|
|Length:||138 m (453 ft)|
|Beam:||14.3 m (47 ft)|
|Draught:||7.5 m (25 ft)|
|Propulsion:||2 × General Electric LM2500 gas turbines, each providing 20,500 hp (15,287 kW). Total 41,000 hp (30,574 kW)|
|Speed:||Over 30 knots (56 km/h; 35 mph)|
|Range:||4,500 nautical miles (8,300 km; 5,200 mi) at 20 knots (37 km/h; 23 mph)|
|Complement:||184 + aircrew|
|AN/SPS-49A(V)1 radar, Mk 92 Guided Missile Fire Control System, AN/SPS-55 radar, Spherion B sonar|
|Armament:||Mk 41 VLS for Evolved Sea Sparrow missile
Mk 13 launcher for Harpoon and SM-2MR missiles
1 × 3 inch OTO Melara
1 × 20 mm Mk 15 Vulcan Phalanx
2 × triple 324 mm Mk 32 torpedo tubes
|Aircraft carried:||2 × S-70B Seahawk|
HMAS Darwin (FFG 04), named for the capital city of the Northern Territory, is an Adelaide class guided-missile frigate of the Royal Australian Navy (RAN). One of four ships ordered from the United States, Darwin entered service in 1984. During her career, she has operated in the Persian Gulf, as part of the INTERFET peacekeeping taskforce, and off the Solomon Islands. The frigate underwent a major upgrade during 2007 and 2008, and is actively serving as of 2013.
Design and construction
Darwin was the fourth Adelaide class vessel (a derivative of the United States Oliver Hazard Perry class frigate) to be ordered, and the last to be built in the United States of America. The ship was laid down by Todd Pacific Shipyards at Seattle, Washington on 2 July 1981, to the Perry class Flight III design. The Adelaides were built as part of the United States Navy's construction program, so were assigned USN hull numbers; Darwin was FFG-44. She was launched on 26 March 1982, and commissioned into the RAN on 21 July 1984.
Darwin's main weapon is the Mark 13 missile launcher located on the foredeck: this is used to fire both Harpoon and SM-2MR Standard missiles. A 76-millimetre (3.0 in) Mark 75 OTO Melara gun is located on top of the superstructure, in front of the exhaust funnel. A triple-barrelled Mark 32 torpedo tube set is fitted to each side of the superstructure. For close defence, a 20-millimetre (0.79 in) Mark 16 Mod 2 Phalanx CIWS sits at the aft end of the superstructure, above the frigate's two helicopter hangars. The hangars houses two S-70B Seahawk helicopters.
During her career, Darwin has been deployed to the Persian Gulf on several occasions.
The ship was deployed to the Solomon Islands in 2001.
On the morning of 13 March 2009, Darwin was one of seventeen warships involved in a ceremonial fleet entry and fleet review in Sydney Harbour, the largest collection of RAN ships since the Australian Bicentenary in 1988. The frigate did not participate in the fleet entry, but was anchored in the harbour for the review.
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