List of active Royal Australian Navy ships

The Royal Australian Navy (RAN) fleet is made up of 50 commissioned warships as of October 2018.

The main strength is the eight frigates and two destroyers of the surface combatant force: eight Anzac class frigates and two Hobart class destroyers. Six Collins-class boats make up the submarine service, although due to the maintenance cycle not all submarines are active at any time. The issues have now been fixed and five submarines are available for service. Amphibious warfare assets include two Canberra-class landing helicopter dock ships and the landing ship HMAS Choules. Thirteen Armidale-class patrol boats perform coastal and economic exclusion zone patrols, and four Huon-class vessels are used for minehunting and clearance (another two are commissioned but in reserve since October 2011). Replenishment at sea is provided by the Sirius, while the two Leeuwin-class and four Paluma-class vessels perform survey and charting duties.

In addition to the commissioned warships, the RAN operates the sail training ship Young Endeavour and two Cape-class patrol boats acquired from the Australian Border Force. Other auxiliaries and small craft are not operated by the RAN, but by DMS Maritime, who are contracted to provide support services.[1]

The lion's share of the RAN fleet is divided between Fleet Base East (HMAS Kuttabul, in Sydney) and Fleet Base West (HMAS Stirling, near Perth). Mine warfare assets are located at HMAS Waterhen (also in Sydney), while HMAS Cairns in Cairns and HMAS Coonawarra in Darwin host the navy's patrol and survey vessels.


Collins class

Australia operates a single class of diesel-electric submarines, the six Collins-class boats which began entering service in 1993. The Collins was designed by the Swedish submarine builder Kockums as the Type 471 specifically to meet Australian requirements, many of which were derived from Australia's need for great range without utilizing a nuclear propulsion system. The ships themselves were built in Australia by the Australian Submarine Corporation in Adelaide, South Australia. The submarines are classified by the RAN as guided missile submarines (SSG), but are often referred to as hunter-killer submarines (SSK) in the international press. While these vessels represented a major increase in capability for the RAN, they have found themselves mired in numerous technical and operational problems. Meanwhile, the RAN has struggled to sufficiently crew their submarine fleet, with at times no more than two qualified crews available.[2] The twelve-boat strong Future Submarine Program (SEA 1000) was initiated to replace the existing six Collins-class boats. The Shortfin Barracuda, the conventional-powered variant of the French Barracuda-class submarine, proposed by French shipbuilder DCNS, was chosen by the Australian government as the design for the new boats. [3]

SizePerformanceArmamentOther features
3051 t surfaced
3353 t submerged
Length: 77.4 metres (254 ft)
Complement: 58
Submerged speed:
21 knots (39 km/h; 24 mph)
Surfaced speed:
10.5 knots (19.4 km/h; 12.1 mph)
Surfaced range:
11,000 nautical miles (20,000 km; 13,000 mi)
Submerged range:
480 nautical miles (890 km; 550 mi)
6 × 21-inch (530 mm) torpedo tubes, firing:
Mark 48 Mod 7 CBASS torpedoes,
UGM-84C Sub-Harpoon anti-ship missiles, or
Stonefish Mark III mines
Type 1007
CK043, CH093
NamePennant numberCommissionedHomeportNotes
CollinsSSG 7327 July 1996Fleet Base West
FarncombSSG 7431 January 1998Fleet Base West
WallerSSG 7510 July 1999Fleet Base West
DechaineuxSSG 7623 February 2001Fleet Base West
SheeanSSG 7723 February 2001Fleet Base West
RankinSSG 7829 March 2003Fleet Base West

Amphibious warfare

Canberra class

The Canberra class are landing helicopter dock ships based on the design of Spanish ship Juan Carlos I. The hull of each ship was built by the designer, Navantia, then was transported to Australia by heavy lift ship for internal fitout and installation of the superstructure by BAE Systems Australia. Designed to transport and land an amphibious force of up to 1,600 soldiers by landing craft and helicopter, the Canberras are the largest ships ever operated by the RAN. Lead ship HMAS Canberra was commissioned into the RAN in late 2014. The second ship of the class, Adelaide, was commissioned at the end of 2015.

SizePerformanceArmamentOther features
27,500 t full load
230.82 metres (757.3 ft)
358 personnel (293 RAN, 62 Army, 3 RAAF)
1,046–1,600 troops
Maximum speed:
Over 20 knots (37 km/h; 23 mph)
9,000 nautical miles (17,000 km; 10,000 mi)
4 × Rafael Typhoon 25 mm
6 × 12.7 mm machine guns
6-spot helicopter deck
8 × helicopters (standard load)
Boats carried:
4 × LLC in well deck
Vehicle deck:
Up to 110 vehicles
NamePennant numberCommissionedHomeportNotes
CanberraL0228 November 2014Fleet Base EastRAN Flagship[4]
AdelaideL014 December 2015Fleet Base East


The Bay-class landing ship dock HMAS Choules was acquired by the RAN in 2011. The ship was originally built by Swan Hunter for the British Royal Fleet Auxiliary, and entered British service in 2006 as RFA Largs Bay. She was made redundant in the 2011 Strategic Defence and Security Review and sold to Australia. Choules represents a major increase in sealift capability for the RAN, particularly after mechanical issues in 2010 and 2011 forced the early retirement of the navy's two Kanimbla-class vessels, and put HMAS Tobruk in dock for an extensive refit.

SizePerformanceArmamentOther features
16,190 t full load
176.6 metres (579 ft)
158 personnel
356–700 troops
Maximum speed:
18 knots (33 km/h; 21 mph)
8,000 nautical miles (15,000 km; 9,200 mi)
Unarmed Aviation:
Helicopter deck, no permanent hangar; temporary hanger can be fitted
Boats carried:
1 × LCU, 1 × LCM-8, or 2 × LCVP in well deck
2 × Mexeflotes on flanks
Vehicle deck:
32 tanks or 150 trucks
NamePennant numberCommissionedHomeportNotes
ChoulesL10013 December 2011Fleet Base EastIn Royal Fleet Auxiliary service 2006–2011

Surface combatants

Hobart Class

The Australian Air Warfare Destroyer (AWD) project commenced in 2000, to replace the Adelaide-class frigates and restore the capability last exhibited by the Perth-class destroyers. The ship was assembled from 31 pre-fabricated modules ('blocks'): 12 for the hull, 9 for the forward superstructure, and 10 for the aft superstructure. The Hobarts are built around the Aegis combat system. The first ship HMAS Hobart was ordered on 4 October 2007 and commissioned on 23 September 2017.

SizePerformanceArmamentOther features
7,000 t full load
147.2 metres (483 ft)
186 + 16 aircrew
Maximum speed:
28 knots (52 km/h; 32 mph)
5,000 nautical miles (9,300 km; 5,800 mi)
48-cell Mark 41 Vertical Launch System
2 × 4-canister Harpoon missile launchers
1 × Mark 45 Mod 4 5-inch gun
2 × Mark 32 Mod 9 two-tube torpedo launchers
1 × Phalanx CIWS
2 × 25mm M242 Bushmaster autocannons in Typhoon mounts
1 x MH-60R Seahawk
Lockheed Martin AN/SPY-1D(V) S-band radar
Ultra Electronics Sonar Systems' Integrated Sonar System
NamePennant numberCommissionedHomeportNotes
HobartDDG 3923 September 2017Fleet Base East
Brisbane DDG 41 27 October 2018 Fleet Base East

Anzac class

There are eight frigates of the Anzac class. These were commissioned from 1996 to 2006 as part of a joint program with New Zealand, whose navy operates an additional two examples. Derived from Blohm + Voss' MEKO modular ship family and designated the MEKO 200 ANZ by that company, the ships were built in Australia by Tenix in Williamstown, Victoria. They are designated as helicopter frigates (FFH) by the RAN, and are designed to be capable of both mid-level patrol and blue water operations. In 2010, these vessels began to receive upgrades to their anti-ship missile defence (ASMD) capabilities.

SizePerformanceArmamentOther features
3600 t full load
118 metres (387 ft)
22 officers + 141 sailors
Maximum speed:
27 knots (50 km/h; 31 mph)
6,000 nautical miles (11,000 km; 6,900 mi)
5-inch/54 Mk 45 DP gun
8-cell Mk 41 VLS
8 × Harpoon Block II
2 × 3-tube Mk 32 torpedo tubes
1 × S-70B-2 Seahawk helicopter
SPS-49(V)8 CEAFAR (part of ASMD upgrade being rolled out across the class)
Spherion B
NamePennant numberCommissionedHomeportNotes
AnzacFFH 15018 May 1996Fleet Base East
AruntaFFH 15112 December 1998Fleet Base West
WarramungaFFH 15231 March 2001Fleet Base West
StuartFFH 15317 August 2002Fleet Base West
ParramattaFFH 1544 October 2003Fleet Base East
BallaratFFH 15526 June 2004Fleet Base East
ToowoombaFFH 1568 October 2005Fleet Base West
PerthFFH 15726 August 2006Fleet Base West
Two additional ships built for and operated by the Royal New Zealand Navy

Patrol and mine warfare

Armidale class

For patrol of Australia's vast coastline, territorial waters, and offshore territories, the RAN operates thirteen Armidale-class patrol boats. These replaced the Fremantle class from 2005 as the navy's primary asset for border protection, fisheries patrols, and interception of unauthorised arrivals by sea. Based on the Bay-class customs vessels, the Armidales are significantly enlarged to allow for better range and seakeeping ability. Originally, twelve boats were to be built by Austal Ships, but the establishment of a dedicated patrol force for the North West Shelf Venture saw another two ordered. The Australian Patrol Boat Group has divided the class into four divisions, with three ships' companies assigned for every two vessels to achieve higher operational availability. HMAS Bundaberg was decommissioned in December 2014 after being extensively damaged by an onboard fire.[5] Ongoing problems with the patrol boats, including wear from high operational use and structural issues, prompted the RAN to acquire two Cape-class patrol boats from the Australian Border Force.[6]

Size[7][8]Performance[7][8]Armament[7][8]Other features[7][8]
270 t
56.8 metres (186 ft)
Complement: 21
Maximum speed:
25 knots (46 km/h; 29 mph)
3,000 nautical miles (5,600 km; 3,500 mi)
1 × 25 mm M242 Bushmaster
2 × 12.7 mm machine guns
2 × Zodiac 7.2 m (24 ft) RHIBs
NamePennant numberCommissionedHomeportNotes
ArmidaleACPB 8324 June 2005HMAS Coonawarra
LarrakiaACPB 8410 February 2006HMAS Coonawarra
BathurstACPB 8510 February 2006HMAS Coonawarra
AlbanyACPB 8615 July 2006HMAS Coonawarra
PirieACPB 8729 July 2006HMAS Coonawarra
MaitlandACPB 8829 September 2006HMAS Coonawarra
AraratACPB 8913 November 2006HMAS Coonawarra
BroomeACPB 9010 February 2007HMAS Coonawarra
WollongongACPB 9223 June 2007HMAS Cairns
ChildersACPB 937 July 2007HMAS Cairns
LauncestonACPB 9422 September 2007HMAS Cairns
MaryboroughACPB 958 December 2007HMAS Coonawarra
GlenelgACPB 9622 February 2008HMAS Coonawarra
One additional ship (Bundaberg) destroyed by fire

Huon class

Mine countermeasures at sea are handled by the Huon-class minehunters, which began to enter RAN service from 1999. The class was based on the Italian Navy's Gaeta-class minehunter developed by Intermarine SpA. Development was undertaken in partnership between Intermarine and Australian Defence Industries (ADI). The first hull was built in Italy, with fitting out the first and construction of the remaining five vessels of the class done by ADI in Newcastle, New South Wales, replacing the problematic Bay-class minehunters. In addition to the mine warfare role, individual have been deployed on occasion to support patrol and border protection operations. Four vessels operate out of HMAS Waterhen, in Sydney, New South Wales. An additional two ships were placed in reserve in October 2011.

SizePerformanceArmamentOther features
720 t full load
52.5 metres (172 ft)
6 officers + 33 sailors
Maximum speed:
14 knots (26 km/h; 16 mph)
1,500 nautical miles (2,800 km; 1,700 mi)
1 × 30 mm DS30B autocannon
2 × 12.7 mm machine guns
2 × Double Eagle mine disposal vehicles
Type 1007 navigational radar
Type 2093M minehunting sonar
Type 133 PRISM radar warning
2 × Wallop Super Barricade decoy launchers
NamePennant numberCommissionedHomeportNotes
HuonM 8215 May 1999HMAS Waterhen
HawkesburyM 8312 February 2000HMAS WaterhenIn reserve
NormanM 8426 August 2000HMAS WaterhenIn reserve
GascoyneM 852 June 2001HMAS Waterhen
DiamantinaM 864 May 2002HMAS Waterhen
YarraM 871 March 2003HMAS Waterhen



HMAS Sirius was initially built as a civilian oil tanker, but was purchased by the RAN during construction and converted into a replenishment ship for the west coast. Built by Hyundai Mipo Dockyard in South Korea, she was launched in 2004 and commissioned in 2006; costing half the price and becoming active three years before the RAN's original plan of a purpose-build ship.

SizePerformanceArmamentOther features
25,016.53 t
191.3 metres (628 ft)
Maximum speed:
16 knots (30 km/h; 18 mph)
Small arms only 34,806 cz fuel capacity
Helicopter deck, no hangar
NamePennant numberCommissionedHomeportNotes
SiriusO 26616 September 2006Fleet Base West

Hydrographic survey

Leeuwin class

Two Leeuwin-class survey ships were built for the RAN by NQEA Australia of Cairns. Ordered in 1996, the ships were commissioned in a joint ceremony in 2000. They are capable of charting waters up to 6,000 metres (20,000 ft) deep, and carry three Fantome-class survey boats for shallow-water work. In addition to hydrographic surveying duties, since 2001 both vessels have also operated in support of the RAN patrol force.

SizePerformanceArmamentOther features
2,170 t
71.2 metres (234 ft)
10 officers + 46 sailors
Maximum speed:
18 knots (33 km/h; 21 mph)
18,000 nautical miles (33,000 km; 21,000 mi) at 9 knots (17 km/h; 10 mph)
2 × × 12.7 mm machine guns Sonars:
C-Tech CMAS 36/39 hull mounted high frequency active sonar
Atlas Fansweep-20 multibeam echo sounder
Atlas Hydrographic Deso single-beam echo sounder
Klein 2000 towed sidescan sonar array
STN Atlas 9600 ARPA navigation radar
Helicopter deck, no hangar
NamePennant numberCommissionedHomeportNotes
LeeuwinA 24527 May 2000HMAS Cairns
MelvilleA 24627 May 2000HMAS Cairns

Paluma class

The Paluma-class survey motor launches are large catamarans designed for survey operations around northern and eastern Australia. Four ships were built by Eglo Engineering at Port Adelaide, South Australia between 1988 and 1990. The vessels normally operate in pairs.

SizePerformanceArmamentOther features
320 t
36.6 metres (120 ft)
3 officers + 11 sailors
Maximum speed:
12 knots (22 km/h; 14 mph)
1,800 nautical miles (3,300 km; 2,100 mi) at 10 knots (19 km/h; 12 mph)
None fitted Radar:
JRC JMA-3710-6 navigational radar
ELAC LAZ 72 side-scan mapping sonar
Skipper 113 hull-mounted scanning sonar
NamePennant numberCommissionedHomeportNotes
PalumaA 0127 February 1989HMAS Cairns
MermaidA 024 December 1989HMAS Cairns
SheppartonA 0324 January 1990HMAS Cairns
BenallaA 0420 March 1990HMAS Cairns

Non-commissioned vessels

Young Endeavour

The Sail Training Ship Young Endeavour was built as a gift from the United Kingdom to Australia for the latter's 1988 bicentenary of colonisation. Built by British shipbuilder Brooke Marine, the brigantine rig vessel is operated by the RAN, but is used to facilitate the Young Endeavour Youth Scheme; a sail training program for Australian youth aged between 16 and 23. A 10-strong RAN crew is supplemented by 24–30 youth on ten-day voyages, with 500 applicants selected every year through two ballots.

NamePennant numberIn serviceHomeportNotes
Young Endeavour25 January 1988HMAS Waterhen

Cape class

Eight Cape-class patrol boats were built for the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service (now the Australian Border Force) by Austal Ships between 2012 and 2015, as replacements for the Bay class.[9][10] Following the loss of HMAS Bundaberg and hull issues with the Armidale class requiring an intense remedial maintenance program, two Cape-class patrol boats were leased to the RAN from late 2015 until the end of 2016.[6] In naval service, the two rotating crew groups for each of the two vessel are made up of RAN personnel, the patrol boats operate from HMAS Cairns, and are identified with the Australian Defence Vessel (ADV) prefix, but retain the blue-and-red customs colour scheme.[11]

Size[12]Performance[12][13]Armament[12][13]Other features[12][13]
57.8 metres (190 ft)
Complement: 18
Maximum speed:
25 knots (46 km/h; 29 mph)
4,000 nautical miles (7,400 km; 4,600 mi) at 12 knots (22 km/h; 14 mph)
2 x .50 calibre machine guns 2 × 7.3 m (24 ft) Gemini RHIBs
NameIn service[11]Homeport[11]Notes
ADV Cape Fourcroy2017HMAS Cairns
ADV Cape Inscription2017HMAS Cairns
Six additional ships built for and operated by the Australian Border Force

See also


  1. Saunders & Philpott (eds.), IHS Jane's Fighting Ships 2015–2016, p. 35
  2. Defense Industry Daily, 23 April 2012
  3. Wroe, David (26 April 2016). "France wins $50b contract to help build Australia's new submarines". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 26 May 2018.
  4. "HMAS Canberra (III)". Royal Australian Navy. Retrieved 2 October 2015.
  5. Staples, Natalie (19 December 2014). "HMAS Bundaberg decommissioned". Navy Daily. Royal Australian Navy. Retrieved 19 December 2014.
  6. McPhedran, Ian (9 October 2015). "The $3 million cost of Navy's decision to lease patrol boats for border protection". Retrieved 19 October 2015.
  7. Kerr, Julian (1 January 2008). "Plain sailing: Australia's Armidales prove fit for task". Jane's Navy International. Jane's Information Group.
  8. Wertheim, Eric, ed. (2007). The Naval Institute Guide to Combat Fleets of the World: Their Ships, Aircraft, and Systems (15th ed.). Annapolis, MD: Naval Institute Press. p. 22. ISBN 978-1-59114-955-2. OCLC 140283156.
  9. Australian Security Magazine, Govt to buy new border patrol vessels
  10. "Austal Awarded Cape Class Patrol Boat Contract". Media Releases. Austal. 12 August 2011. Archived from the original on 27 September 2011. Retrieved 23 August 2011.
  11. Paroz, Des (5 December 2015). "Cape Class ships join the Fleet". Navy Daily. Royal Australian Navy. Retrieved 7 December 2015.
  12. Saunders (ed.), IHS Jane's Fighting Ships 2012–2013, p. 39
  13. "Austal Patrol 58 – Cape Class" (PDF). Austal. May 2013. Archived from the original (PDF) on 14 September 2013. Retrieved 9 February 2014.

This article is issued from Wikipedia. The text is licensed under Creative Commons - Attribution - Sharealike. Additional terms may apply for the media files.