ADV Cape Otway, the first of the Evolved Cape Class Patrol Boats for the RAN.
An R&S Systems Engineer with ADV Cape Otway at the Austal yard in Henderson, Western Australia.

Evolved Cape Class Patrol Boats for the RAN

Rapid knowledge transfer and design of Integrated Communications System

Upon award of the contract to deliver six Evolved Cape Class Patrol Boats (ECCPB) for the Royal Australian Navy (RAN), Austal undertook an extensive scoping activity to identify a capable partner in Australia to develop the latest generation communications systems. Such a partner would need to be able to meet or exceed the technical scope of the project, while maintaining Australian Industry engagement.

In June 2020, Rohde & Schwarz Australia was chosen to design and develop the Integrated Communications System (ICS) for the ECCPB Project. Completed 5 months later, the ICS architectural design was based on the advanced R&S®NAVICS MLS (multi-level security) IP based Navy Communications switching technology being deployed on the UK’s Royal Navy Type 26 Frigates.

A technology and knowledge transfer arrangement with its parent company in Germany enabled R&S Australia to provide the sovereign capability to configure and adapt the system configuration to meet the RAN’s operational needs. This was achieved using both R&S and third-party products as well as bespoke solutions which had to be designed and manufactured locally specifically for the project.

R&S Australia, in an extraordinary feat of rapid capability delivery, was then able to successfully complete both Factory and Harbour Acceptance Testing for the first-of-class within 11 months and 17 months respectively of contract award. This represented the fastest delivery of an R&S®NAVICS based ICS anywhere in the world, all performed under the pall of the COVID pandemic which imposed significant resource constraints and supplier issues.

The team’s ability to respond and overcome this challenging situation was particularly noteworthy and would not have been possible without an experienced local capability base.

During the last 16 years R&S Australia has established a very competent local systems engineering and integration capability for Australian industry in Sydney to complement its existing maintenance and world-class calibration facilities. This opportunity ensures Australian jobs are created and local supply chain opportunities continue for Australia’s shipbuilding industry.

The ECCPB ICS was designed, built, integrated, configured and tested at the R&S Australia dedicated Integration Facility which allows the company to provide in-country repair and maintenance support for all naval communications systems currently in service with the RAN.

R&S Australia also developed and delivered an ‘Introduction into Service’ training package for the ECCPB ICS to meet the needs of the Australian Navy.

The first of class ADV Cape Otway was formally handed over to the RAN on 23rd March 2022. Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced on the 19th April that the Department of Defence will order an additional two ECCPBs. Austal deemed Rohde & Schwarz Australia as having proven itself to be capable of not just meeting but exceeding the technical scope of the project.

TAOTs on display at RAAF Base Williamtown, home of No.44 Wing which is responsible for providing air traffic control services to the ADF.
A TAOT being loaded onto a semi-trailer inside the Sydney facility following completion of mid-life upgrades.
A TAOT conducting remote air operations at RAAF Base Scherger in Far North Queensland.

Transportable Air Operations Towers for the RAAF

Rohde & Schwarz delivered the TAOTs as prime systems integrator

In 2008, the Royal Australian Air Force sought the acquisition of a forward deployed air traffic control capability.

Rohde & Schwarz Australia answered the call as the prime and systems integrator, engaging with subcontractors and suppliers in Australia and Europe to provide a solid foundation for the successful delivery of capability and the provision of cost-effective sustainment through life. Three Transportable Air Operations Towers (TAOT) were delivered, with the Rohde & Schwarz Australia / GTESPO (now S&CSPO) team receiving a High Commendation for Defence/Industry Team of the Year for Minor Acquisition in 2009.

In 2019, Rohde & Schwarz Australia commenced a Mid-Life Upgrade (MLU) to assure the capability and extend its service life to 2030 and beyond. This has served to not only remediate obsolescence, but also to incorporate new technologies, enhance operational capability, and increase security.

The first tranche of the upgrade implemented a full IP-based communication system, the core of which is the CERTIUM VCS. Other modernised elements include the voice recording system, airfield facilities monitoring and control system, uninterruptable power supply, network and time synchronisation systems.

In the second tranche, the Capability Delivery and Sustainment team is now focussing on modernising the radar situational awareness display, meteorological system, lifting and levelling control system, and refurbishment activities on the cabin and trailer.

Rohde & Schwarz Australia is proud to partner with Surveillance and Control Systems Program Office and the Royal Australian Air Force on this critical capability supporting remote and deployed ADF operations.

General and legal information

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Terms & Conditions of the Prize Draw 10 years Rohde & Schwarz oscilloscopes

1. The prize draw “10 years Rohde & Schwarz oscilloscopes” (herein referred to as “Draw”) is organized by Rohde & Schwarz GmbH & Co. KG, Mühldorfstraße 15, 81671 Munich, Germany, Tel. +49 89 41 29 0 (herein referred to as “R&S).

2. All participators can register to the draw during January 01, 2020 to December 31, 2020 with their name, company name and business e-mail.

3. Participation is free of charge and not dependent on the purchase of goods or services.

4. The draw is only open to legal entities and only the legal entities are able to win the prizes. An individual person is not allowed to participate on its own name and its own account but as a representative of a legal entity filing the participation form in the name of and on behalf of the legal entity.

5. The prizes to win are 1 of 10 R&S®RTB2000 within the time frame January 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020:

Prize: 1x R&S®RTB2000 Digital Oscilloscope

6. The draw takes place at Rohde & Schwarz headquarters, Muehldorstrasse 15, 81671 Munich. The winner of the prizes will be informed by e-mail within 5 (5) working days.

7. The authorized representative of the legal entity shall inform Rohde & Schwarz about the acceptance of the price. In case of the denial of the acceptance, or no answer within two (2) weeks, a new winner will be drawn. If no winner can be determined within four (4) weeks, the draw ends and the prize forfeit.

8. R&S’ employees and members of their families and also person being familiar with the process of the draw and members of their families are excluded from filling the participation form.

9. No cash equivalent or exchange of prizes is allowed. Prizes are non-transferable. All taxes, levies, duties, fees and other charges levied in the participant´s country shall be borne by the participant.

10. Personal data will be processed only for the purpose of this prize draw and deleted four (4) weeks after the draw, if not agreed otherwise.

11. Any Participant who does not comply with these Terms & Conditions may be disqualified by R&S from this Competition. In such cases, prizes can also be withdrawn retrospectively. In case a prize is withdrawn retrospectively due to the non-compliance with these Terms & Conditions, it shall be returned by the respective participant at his cost to R&S’ address mentioned under Nr.1 and a new winner will be drawn.

12. The participants cannot claim the prizes of this draw and no legal recourse is permitted in this respect.

13. The draw and any contractual relationship arising therefrom between R&S and the respective participant shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of Germany, without any recourse to the conflict of laws. The courts of Munich, Germany, shall have exclusive jurisdiction in case of any disputes arising directly or indirectly from the participation in this Competition.

* “fast delivery” inside 7 working days applies to the Rohde & Schwarz in-house procedures from order processing through to available ex-factory to ship.