The contracts follow the recent announcement by the Commonwealth Government that the Hunter program had received approval to begin prototyping in December this year as planned.
The new contracts are a crucial part of ASC Shipbuilding’s strategy to maximise Australian industry involvement in the Hunter program, and beyond.
Two of the contracts are for the prototyping phase of the program and include South Australian-based Adelaide Profile Services, which will process and precision-cut around 250 13-metre lengths of steel that will be used in the five prototyping blocks, and Intertek’s Adelaide Inspection Services, which will conduct non‑destructive testing and mechanical testing to assure high quality fabrication welds on those blocks.
A further contract has been placed with New South Wales-based engineering company Sofraco, which will conduct a feasibility study into the test facility requirements for skid-based pumping solutions and report on the feasibility of an upgrade, if appropriate.
ASC Shipbuilding Managing Director, Craig Lockhart, said:
“Placing contracts with Australian businesses is just one part of our strategy to build Australian industry capability.
“To support the creation a sovereign and continuous naval shipbuilding industry, we are also creating thousands of jobs for Australians and training the future shipbuilding workforce, investing in the transfer of knowledge and technology to Australia and undertaking research and technology projects to drive innovation in the advanced manufacturing sector.
APS Adelaide Profile Services Operations Manager, Greg Mills, said:
“It’s a great opportunity to partner with ASC Shipbuilding on the Hunter Class Frigate Program.
“The relationships we have with ASC Shipbuilding, combined with the agility of our workforce, has already produced successful collaborative results at the early stages of the project.”
Intertek Industry Services Regional Director, Andrew Mansfield, said:
“Intertek’s Adelaide-based NDT team is very pleased to be working with ASC Shipbuilding, providing quality and safety services which will help ensure asset reliability and design integrity. We look forward to contributing to the success of such an important project within the region.”
Sofraco Engineering Systems Managing Director, David Lassau, said:
“Defence Programs provide enormous opportunities for Australian industry and we are pleased to have been selected for this study.