Home' Navy News : March 1st 2012 Contents This painting is the most accurate depiction to date of the dawn landing at
Anzac Cove on 25th April 1915. Brigadier Chris Roberts AM, CSC (Rtd)
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March 1, 2012
LEUT Andrew Ragless
HMAS Albatross will soon be home
to three new Bell 429 helicopters
with the first to arrive in March and
undergo testing before entering into
service with 723 Squadron in May.
Commanding Officer 723
Squadron CMDR Matthew Shand
said the Bell helicopters would bol-
ster the squadron's existing fleet of
13 AS350BA Squirrel helicopters.
"It's been an active start to a
promising year," CMDR Shand said.
"With their composite construc-
tion, full glass cockpit and advanced
systems, the Bell helicopters will be
leased from Raytheon Australia and
are set to be the most modern naval
aircraft in Australian skies."
In preparation to receive the Bell
helicopters, the squadron has been
building its experience on three
Agusta 109E aircraft, also on lease
from Raytheon Australia.
CMDR Shand said training
flights on the Agusta aircraft had
provided valuable opportunities for
junior aircrew to practise planning
and executing tasks in a wide vari-
ety of environments.
"We recently used the Agustas
on a mission to Queensland where
they were prepared to conduct relief
during the floods, however their ser-
vices were not required."
Aviation Warfare Officer LEUT
Trine Themsen said she had found
operating the Agustas valuable
while at the squadron.
"The experience we've had fly-
ing the Agustas has had a big impact
on improving our ability to plan and
execute complex missions," LEUT
"We're extremely excited about
introducing the Bell into the squad-
ron, refining our skills and seeing
what it can do."
Time to ring in
the Bell 429s
READY FOR ARRIVALS: 723
Squadron (above) has been
training on the Agusta 109E
aircraft (inset) in anticipation
of the arrival of three new Bell
429 helicopters this month.
They will enter service in May.
Photos: ABIS Hayley Clarke
and LSIS Yuri Ramsey
ENGINEERS from the Anzac system
project office and Navy's Fleet Support
Unit in Western Australia have repaired
and restored hull-mounted sonar domes
on the Anzac-class platforms.
Deputy Engineering Service
Manager at Anzac System Program
Office CPOMT Paul Wilcox said the
project provided significant challenges
in tight timeframes and with limited
"At the end of last year, our engineer-
ing section faced the dilemma of obtain-
ing a serviceable sonar cradle to HMAS
Anzac when a one-for-one replacement
was not available," CPOMT Wilcox said.
"The removal and installation of
hull-mounted sonar domes on the
Anzac-class platforms is a meticulous
procedure and therefore only carried out
during docking availabilities."
He said it required a purpose-built
cradle to support the fragile sonar dome
while it was being manoeuvred into
place under the bow of the ship.
In this case, the Anzac team engaged
the Fleet Support Unit to develop an
Restoration of the cradle required
multiple tasks in support of preservation,
design and carpentry before testing and
certification of the equipment could occur.
"This was achieved in an extremely
tight three-week period following initial
receipt of an unserviceable cradle late
last year," CPOMT Wilcox said.
"It involved a systematic and coor-
dinated scheme of work to achieve the
timeframe where a number of people
were instrumental in achieving a suc-
"CPOBM Jock McQueen and his
team completed preservation activities
such as sand-blasting, priming and
on home for dome
THE Defence Science
Organisation (DSTO) is
advancing the progres-
sive application of new
to the Collins class sub-
Andrew Amiet said the
new absorbing material
was designed, formu-
lated and tested by elec-
"The new material is
tested for peel and tear,
to help ensure it adheres
effectively to the masts,"
Dr Amiet said. "It is
designed to reduce the
range at which other sea
or airborne platforms
could detect a Collins
"FSU CPOMT Gavin McDonnell
and team were key in completing tasks
such as the manufacture of chocks to
support the sonar dome during removal
"One of the team member's skills
in boat building, gained in a previous
life, also proved useful in the carpentry
Final testing of the cradle and certifi-
cation for lifting weight was completed
late last year and the cradle dispatched
to Fleet Base East.
CRAFTED CRADLE: The sonar
dome cradle after being refurbished
(inset) and the finished product with
sonar dome in place.
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