Three companies join Hunter class frigate program


Three small manufacturers will deliver products into the prototyping phase of construction of nine Hunter class frigates now underway at the Osborne Naval Shipyard in Adelaide.

BAE Systems Maritime Australia announced SMEs in New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia would supply a range of manufactured parts for prototyping blocks now under construction.

Successful companies are:

  • Defence Seals & Spares will supply manhole and access panel gaskets from its Warriewood operations, north of Sydney
  • ABECK Group will manufacture flowforge gratings from its Dandenong, Melbourne facility
  • And PRP Manufacturing will supply gaskets from its Dudley Park plant in Adelaide.

Work underway on prototyping blocks tests, evaluates and refines systems, tools, plant, workforce and supplier products, providing a solid operational foundation prior to the commencement of production of the first frigate.

The structural manufacture of the first steel prototype unit (pictured) for the program was completed at Osborne in October.

The contracts build on previous prototyping orders with local companies including BlueScope Steel AIS, Infrabuild Steel Centre, Intertek, MG Engineering, Altrad, Novafast International, Century Engineering and Mackay Consolidated Industries.

The Hunter program is establishing what BAE describes as ‘an enduring and uniquely Australian sovereign industrial capability that supports Australia’s continuous naval shipbuilding strategy where Australians will independently design, build and sustain the nation’s next generation of complex warships’.

BAE Systems Maritime Australia managing director Craig Lockhart said that establishing a competitive, sustainable and resilient supply chain in Australia is critical to the overall success of the program.

Lockhart said: “Each of these three companies bring a unique and important skillset to the construction of frigates in Australia, helping to deliver the best capability to the navy.

“We look forward to placing more contracts with suppliers across Australia as the program progresses.”

Companies can engage the Hunter Frigate Program through its Industry Capability Network (ICN) page.

Picture: BAE Systems Maritime Australia

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