Naval Warfare

Austal Australia Launced Seventh Evolved Cape-class Patrol Boat for Royal Australian Navy

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Austal Australia Launced Seventh Evolved Cape-class Patrol Boat for Royal Australian Navy

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Royal Australian Navy Evolved Cape-class Patrol Boat ADV Cape Solander (312)
Royal Australian Navy Evolved Cape-class Patrol Boat ADV Cape Solander (312)

Austal Australia has successfully launched the 7th Evolved Cape-class Patrol Boat for the Royal Australian Navy – the future ADV Cape Solander – at the Henderson, Western Australia shipyard; achieving a record state of completion for the vessel, prior to hitting the water. Austal’s build and acceptance strategy, driven by Industry-leading efficiency and productivity measures means only a small percentage of the total vessel fit out and commissioning is required alongside (on the water). The company commissioning team have completed the majority of their work scope in the assembly bay. Austal has already delivered six x 58 metre Evolved Cape-class Patrol Boats since May 2020, and following the Australian Government’s recent announcements in November 2023 and February 2024, the company will be delivering another four vessels in the next two years for the Royal Australian Navy.

The Cape class is a ship class of 22 large patrol boats operated by the Marine Unit of the Australian Border Force, the Royal Australian Navy (RAN) and the Trinidad and Tobago Coast Guard. Ordered in 2011, the vessels were built by Austal to replace Customs’ Bay-class patrol boats, and entered service from 2013 onwards. ‘Evolved’ Cape-class has several enhancements and has increased crew capacity from 22 to 32 people and quality-of-life provisions have been enhanced, ensuring those who operate the new Capes have connectivity to the outside world regardless of the operating environment. The new Evolved Cape-class Patrol Boats include several enhancements that further extend the capability of the proven vessel and the fleet; with modifications developed through the in-service experience of ten Cape-class Patrol Boats already operating with the Navy and Border Force throughout Northern Australia.

Royal Australian Navy Evolved Cape-class Patrol Boat ADV Cape Solander (312)
Royal Australian Navy Evolved Cape-class Patrol Boat ADV Cape Solander (312)Solander

Austal Australia was awarded a contract to design and construct six ‘Evolved’ Cape-class Patrol Boats for the Royal Australian Navy. Less than 2 years later the company delivered the first of the Evolved Capes, the ADV Cape Otway (314), and has delivered the remaining five vessels over 2022-23; ADV Cape Peron (315); ADV Cape Naturaliste (316)
ADV Cape Capricorn (317); ADV Cape Woolamai (318) and ADV Cape Pillar (319). In April 2022 (then) Prime Minister The Hon Scott Morrison announced that a further two Evolved Cape Class Patrol Boats would be ordered by the Australian Department of Defence in FY2023; ADV Cape Solander (312) and ADV Cape Schanck (313) – now under construction. In November 2023, the Australian Government announced an order for another two Evolved Cape Class Patrol Boats, bringing the total number of vessels on order for the Royal Australian Navy to ten.

Austal Limited is an Australian-based global ship building company and defence prime contractor that specialises in the design, construction and support of defence and commercial vessels. Austal’s product range includes naval vessels, high-speed ferries, and supply or crew transfer vessels for offshore windfarms and oil and gas platforms. Austal has three major ship building facilities. Defence vessels are designed and constructed in Henderson, Western Australia and Mobile, Alabama. Austal has designed and constructed over 260 vessels for numerous defence forces and commercial fleet operators. Customers include the Australian Border Force, Condor Ferries, Mols Linien of Denmark, Royal Australian Navy, Royal Navy of Oman and United States Navy. Corporate headquarters are co-located at Austal’s Australian ship building facility in Henderson.

Royal Australian Navy Evolved Cape-class Patrol Boat ADV Cape Solander (312)
Royal Australian Navy Evolved Cape-class Patrol Boat ADV Cape Solander (312)

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