Steel Cat’s Show of Speed

September 21, 2020 – Guided Missile Destroyer HMAS Brisbane recently stretched her legs off the coast of Sydney, to conduct a full power trial.

A power trial is not a speed test to see how fast a ship can go. It is a well calibrated examination of turbine speed and shaft rotation against a range of parameters.

For Petty Officer Marine Technician Gary Bissett it was another tick in the box for the Steel Cat’s engineering team.

“Getting off the coast gives us the nautical freedom to come up to speed within the limitations set by the builders and the tests we need to conduct,” he said.

“We are working closely with civilian contractors from Thales and General Electric to ensure Brisbane is performing to the best of her capabilities, and ready to face whatever the challenges that lay ahead.

“The trial has delivered a positive outcome and it was a great learning opportunity for those in the engineering team, who haven’t done this type of activity before,” said Petty Officer Bissett.

One of the new engineering team members is Leading Seaman Marine Technician Katie Welch. Her role in the trial was to work with industry partners, utilising the tools required for the calibration.

“It was a great experience working closely with the contractors, the whole team had such a good vibe,” said Leading Seaman Welch.

“The power trial was successful in the requirement to demonstrate the integrity of the shaft line, following an extensive maintenance period for the ship.”

Other aspects of power trials include determining the ship’s performance in terms of speed, power and propeller revolutions under prescribed ship conditions.

This aids greatly in validating ships information for navigation purposes, such as time required for given speed, speed calculations, distanced travelled and fuel consumption rates.

The trial marks a significant milestone for Brisbane, as the ship and her crew prepare for her work-up evaluations in the coming months.

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