Lockheed Martin, Saab to provide combat systems for Hunter class

BAE Systems Australia has announced Lockheed Martin Australia and Saab Australia as its partners to deliver combat system integration for Australia’s $35 billion Hunter Class frigate program.

The Hunter class combat system enables the warships to detect and identify aircraft, submarines and ships at great distance to offer the frigate’s command team maximum situational awareness and the capability to defend the ship and fight an enemy.

“The Hunter Class combat system is a vital piece of the frigate’s infrastructure, which will give the men and women who operate these ships the capability to protect the nation against airborne, surface and under-sea threats,” BAE Systems Australia Hunter Class frigate program managing director Nigel Stewart said.

Defence minister Christopher Pyne said the $35 billion frigate program would provide the Navy with the highest levels of lethality and deterrence.

“The nine anti-submarine warfare frigates are a new generation of major surface combatants which will replace the current eight ANZAC class frigates,” Pyne said.

“I would like to congratulate Lockheed Martin Australia and Saab Australia for being named the preferred tenderers to partner with BAE Systems Australia to deliver the Combat System Integration on the Hunter class frigates.”

Pyne said the government expects the move to create up to 200 jobs.

“The frigates will not only help secure Australia’s interests through enhanced capability but the program will also be delivered by Australian workers, with unprecedented levels of Australian industry opportunities in the global supply chain,” he said.

“The Combat Management System for the new Hunter class frigate fleet will be the Aegis System, together with an Australian tactical interface to be developed by Saab Australia.”

Construction will begin at Adelaide’s Osborne Shipyard in 2020 and the program will employ around 4000 workers.