Task Force Arrives in Indonesia for Indo-Pacific Endeavour 2019

May 20, 2019 – The Indo-Pacific Endeavour 2019 (IPE 19) Joint Task Force has begun its engagement program in Indonesia during the final port visits before returning to Australia later this month. HMA Ships Canberra and Newcastle arrived in Jakarta on 18 May, with HMAS Success visiting Makassar in South Sulawesi on the same day. Commander IPE 19 Joint Task Force, Air Commodore Rick Owen says the visits are a valuable opportunity to enhance one of Australia’s most important regional defens partnerships. “We have a shared maritime border and a…

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Newcastle always at Canberra’s side

May 15, 2019 – HMAS Newcastle continues to provide the critical role of primary defense for HMAS Canberra (III) and the wider protection for the INDO-PACIFIC ENDEAVOUR 2019 (IPE19) fleet. As it transits from west to east on its final mission, the Adelaide class guided missile frigate has been at Canberra’s side. The operations room supervisor and combat systems supervisor, Petty Officer Bianca Sherrington, said Newcastle used sensors and liaised with the other Royal Australian Navy ships to provide an up-to-date force picture for the IPE19 Joint Task Force. “In…

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Final top up for Success

May 18, 2019 – In the approach lanes of one of the busiest sea traffic waterways in the world, the INDO-PACIFIC ENDEAVOUR 2019 Joint Task Force has fuelled up for the final leg of the major Australian Defence Force activity. HMA Ships Canberra, Newcastle and Success have visited Sri Lanka, India, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam as part of efforts to promote security and stability in the region. They will also visit ports in Singapore and Indonesia. Following a transit through the Malacca and Singapore Straits, the ships took on their…

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Newcastle navigates world’s busiest waters

May 14, 2019 – HMAS Newcastle, in company with the INDO-PACIFIC ENDEAVOUR 2019 flagship HMAS Canberra (III), has made her final transit through the busiest and most complex waters in the world: the Straits of Malacca and Singapore. The navigation officer in Newcastle, Lieutenant Mitchell Smith, was responsible for getting the ship – which will be decommissioned later this year – safely through the region. “As the main shipping channel between the Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean, the Straits of Malacca and Singapore are some of the most strategic…

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Indo-Pacific Endeavour 2019 Task Force deepens ties with Vietnam

May 7, 2019 – The Indo-Pacific Endeavour 2019 (IPE 19) Joint Task Force is continuing its international engagement activities with the arrival of two ships in Cam Ranh Bay, Vietnam. HMA Ships Canberra and Newcastle’s port call follows the recent signing in November of the Joint Vision Statement on enhancing defense cooperation with Vietnam, and upgrading of the bilateral relationship to a strategic partnership in March 2018. These developments reflect the strength of the Australia-Vietnam relationship and our commitment to cooperating on areas of mutual interest. Commander of the IPE…

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Third Edition of Bilateral Maritime Exercise between Royal Australian and Indian Navies – AUSINDEX-19 set to begin

April 2, 2019 – The third edition of AUSINDEX, an acronym for Australia India Exercise is scheduled to commence with the arrival of HMAS Canberra (L02), a Landing Helicopter Dock, HMAS Newcastle(06) and HMAS Paramatta(154), both frigates; HMAS Collins, a conventional submarine and HMAS Success(OR 304), a Durance-class multi-product replenishment oiler at Visakhapatnam on 02 April 19. The aim of the exercise is, “To strengthen and enhance mutual cooperation and interoperability between the IN and RAN, providing opportunities for interaction and exchange of professional views between the personnel of the…

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IPE19 Prepares for EOD Training Activities with Regional Partners

March 26, 2019 – As the INDO-PACIFIC ENDEAVOUR Task Force approached Sri Lanka, Australian Navy and Army teams prepared for diving, demolition and explosive ordinance disposal (EOD) training with regional partners. Platoon commander of the 2nd Battalion Royal Australian Regiment (2RAR) embarked in Canberra for IPE19, Army Lieutenant Benjamin Selby, said the activity would encompass a wide range of joint training activities in preparation for military training serials with regional partners. “Working with our enabling partners drawn from across the ADF allows the IPE Task Force to deliver a world-class…

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Newcastle Patrols Bass Strait Oil Rigs

February 28, 2019 – While transiting to Western Australia for Exercise OCEAN EXPLORER 2019, the guided missile frigate HMAS Newcastle separated from the OCEAN EXPLORER Task Group to undertake patrols of key oil infrastructure in the Bass Strait as part of Navy’s national maritime security commitment. Newcastle’s Commanding Officer, Commander Anita Sellick, described the importance of the patrols to the security of Australian maritime resources. “Royal Australian Navy ships and aircraft routinely patrol key oil and gas infrastructure as we undertake transits throughout the nation’s exclusive economic zone,” Commander Sellick…

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Cultural exchanges as Aussies and Japanese cross deck

September 30, 2018 – Royal Australian Navy sailors have tasted life at sea with the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force as personnel from both services temporarily swapped places after Exercise Kakadu. On completion of the exercise, HMAS Newcastle and JS Sazanami DD-113 adjusted their programs to depart together from Darwin and conduct a Passage Exercise Program for three days. During those three days, six members from Newcastle conducted a cross deck with six members of JS Sazanami. Officers and sailors from JS Sazanami were given a tour of Newcastle and invited…

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Kakadu Task Groups Form Up

September 8, 2018 – The sea phase of Exercise Kakadu has shifted up a gear, with coalition ships beginning a series of challenging and complex maneuvers off the coast of the Northern Territory. Four ships from Australia, Singapore and China, rehearsed procedures for maneuvering warships so the units can confidently progress to more advanced scenarios. HMAS Newcastle’s Navigating Officer, Lieutenant Mitchell Smith, said operating closely together is the first building block for effective operations at sea. “Handling ships in close proximity is a fundamental part of being in a task…

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Novocastrians welcomed home in HMAS Newcastle

The boom of a seven-gun salute was a welcoming sound for the ship’s company of HMAS Newcastle as she returned to her namesake city for a port visit. To mark the guided missile frigate’s arrival, the first canon was fired from the historic Fort Scratchley by the ship’s Commissioning Lady, Margaret McNaughton. Hundreds of locals lined the foreshore for Newcastle’s entrance into the harbour as the seven-gun salute was returned with a round of volleys fired by members of ship’s company. Commanding Officer Newcastle, Commander Anita Sellick was among seven…

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Australian and French warships exercise off Darwin

When more than 25,000 tonnes of steel in the shape of three warships exercise in close proximity to each other, it is an impressive example of each crew’s warfighting and seamanship skills. That display occurred when HMAS Newcastle trained with French Navy Ships Dixmude and Surcouf off the coast of Darwin recently. Newcastle practiced gunnery serials, officer of the watch maneuvers, communication exercises and replenishment at sea approaches with the two French vessels over a four-day period. Commanding Officer of Newcastle, Commander Anita Sellick, said exercises and engagements with foreign…

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Exercise OCEAN EXPLORER comes to a close

The largest fleet training activity for 2018, Exercise OCEAN EXPLORER has come to a successful close in Jervis Bay this week. In keeping with tradition, the exercise concluded with a tri-nation sports day on the grounds at HMAS Creswell on Sunday, following a spectacular fleet arrival of ten ships and embarked aircraft. Task Group Commander, Captain Paul O’Grady said the three-week activity resulted in multiple ships and aircraft forged into a highly effective and cooperative warfighting team. “Most importantly it has seen more than 2,000 men and women from three…

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HMAS Newcastle Completes Last RAN FFG Middle East Deployment

HMAS Newcastle returned to her home port of Fleet Base East, Garden Island, Sydney, today following a six month deployment to the Middle East region. Minister for Defence, Senator the Hon Marise Payne, welcomed 230 members of the ship’s company home from the deployment, which included counter-terrorism and counter-piracy patrols as part of the Combined Maritime Forces and a two-week attachment with the US Navy’s Fifth Fleet in the Arabian Gulf.

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HMAS Newcastle’s operations complete

HMAS Newcastle has rounded out her busy six-month deployment to the Middle East, completing some ‘firsts’ and ‘lasts’ for Australian Navy ships in the region. During her demanding deployment, she patrolled about 25,500 nautical miles or five times the distance around Australia. She conducted a range of Combined Maritime Forces operations, including an attachment in support of the USS Nimitz Carrier Strike Group, and trialed emerging naval capabilities. Commanding Officer, Commander Mark Sirois said the deployment included many highlights. “During our attachment to the US 5th Fleet and USS Nimitz…

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