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August 2, 2012
COLLINS-class submarine HMAS
Far ncomb has successfully sunk a
target ship, the 12,106 tonne for mer
USNS Kilauea in Hawaii.
Farncomb fired one Mark 48 tor-
pedo and achieved a hit just below the
bridge of the ship as part of a sink-
ing exercise at Exercise Rim of the
The former USNS Kilauea broke
into two parts and sank about 40 min-
CO Farncomb CMDR Glen Miles
said the firing was a significant
milestone for both himself and his
60-strong crew. "This is the result of
professionalism and teamwork," he
"Those of us who drive these boats
know that the Collins' weapons sys-
tems are among the most capable in
Australia is among 22 nations
attending Exercise RIMPAC, which
includes six submarines and 40 sur-
face ships participating in a realistic
maritime warfare scenario.
Australian soldiers from 1 RAR
are also participating in the amphibi-
ous aspect of the exercise, alongside
US Marines. RAAF AP-3C Orions
and a Wedgetail aircraft are also pro-
viding air support.
Australia's contingent commander,
CDRE Stuart Mayer, said RIMPAC pro-
vided the ADF with a realistic, high tech
and challenging training opportunity.
"HMAS Fa r ncomb's success
reminds us yet again of the invaluable
role submarines play in modern war-
fare," CDRE Mayer said.
"RIMPAC allows us to train with
our allies for a worst case scenario in
a real life environment."
For more on RIMPAC see our centrespread
on HMAS Perth.
HMAS Farncomb suffered a minor
f lood in one of its machinery spaces
while participating in RIMPAC on
At the time of the incident, the
submarine was at periscope depth
operating its diesel engines to
charge the battery.
Standard pre-planned procedures
were immediately executed and the
situation was dealt with quickly. The
submarine surfaced as part of this
The incident has been traced to
a split in a hose on the submarine's
weight compensation system.
No personnel were injured and
Farncomb returned to Pearl Harbor
in Hawaii to replace the hose.
There are a number of hoses fit-
ted to systems in the submarine that
use the supply of sea water as part of
Weight compensation is one such
system, moving water in and out of
the submarine to maintain neutral
Following the failure of a hose
in HMAS Dechaineux in 2003,
immediate changes were made to
procedures and the development of
equipment changes com menced.
One of these changes was auto-
matic closu re of all hull valves
should a similar situation arise.
This change has been installed in
It's a hit for sub
SINKING SUCCESS: Former USNS Kilauea breaks apart and sinks following a torpedo attack from HMAS Farncomb, on the Pacific missile range
facility off Hawaii, during RIMPAC.
HIT IT: Damage to the hull of former
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