posted on Aug, 17 2005 @ 09:17 AM
Preferred Designer Chosen for AWD Contract
The Federal Government has chosen Gibbs & Cox as the preferred designer for Navy’s Air Warfare Destroyers (AWDs) - one of Australia’s largest and
most complex Defence projects worth up to $6 billion.
Defence Minister Robert Hill said Gibbs & Cox now joins a team made up of ASC Shipbuilder Pty Ltd, who has been selected to build the AWDs, and
Raytheon Australia, selected as the Combat System-System Engineer.
Senator Hill said Gibbs & Cox, a United States based company, was chosen through a competitive tender evaluation process that also included German
company Blohm + Voss and Spanish company Navantia.
(Editor’s Note: the selected Gibbs & Cox proposal is based on the US Navy’s DDG-51 Arleigh Burke class destroyer.)c
"The selection of Gibbs and Cox as platform designer now completes the team whose responsibility it is to deliver the project," Senator Hill said.
"The Government made the decision after accepting the recommendation of the Source Selection Board on the basis that Gibbs & Cox offered a superior
bid in terms of value for money.
"All three companies presented competitive bids and showed themselves to be very competent naval ship designers. Bids were evaluated against a wide
range of criteria.
"The Gibbs & Cox evolved design will now compete with an Australianised version of Spain’s existing F100 ship design, and will be further
considered by the Government as part of the next phase of the project.
"The construction of the Air Warfare Destroyers will be one of the most significant shipbuilding projects undertaken in Australia to date, and will
provide enormous opportunities for Australian industry," Senator Hill said.
The Government has provided $455 million towards the current phase of the project which includes further design work, workforce skilling, initial
infrastructure investment and facilities construction.
Senator Hill said the Defence program office would now advise on a location to establish a state of the art AWD System Centre which will house up to
200 personnel working on the development and through life support of the vessels.
The conduct of the evaluation and selection of Gibbs & Cox was reviewed by AWD Program Probity Advisers KPMG and also independently by Sir Laurence
Street, both of whom have confirmed that the process was fair and equitable.
"The AWDs represent a quantum leap in the air warfare capabilities of the Navy," Senator Hill said.
"The vessels, which are to be introduced into service from 2013, will be equipped with the world-class AEGIS Combat System capable of detecting
hostile aircraft and missiles at ranges in excess of 150 kilometres."
They will provide significantly increased protection from air attack for troops being transported and deployed on ADF Operations overseas and can
provide long-range air warfare defence for a Naval task group.
The AWDs will also have an anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare capability, as well as the ability to embark a helicopter at sea. The ship will
also be interoperable with the United States and other Coalition partners
(Source: Australian Department of Defence; issued Aug. 16, 2005)