With its New Zealand partner, Electronic Navigation Ltd (ENL), defence and security company Saab has signed a contract to provide a complete communications system on board the Royal New Zealand Navy’s future fleet replenishment vessel, HMNZS Aotearoa.
The Royal New Zealand Navy (RNZN) has selected Saab to equip its new Maritime Sustainment Capability vessel, HMNZS Aotearoa. Saab will provide the TactiCall integrated communications system, which interconnects communication technologies regardless of radio band, frequency or hardware.
Saab’s partner in New Zealand, ENL will provide expert in-service support to the Royal New Zealand Navy following the vessels handover.
“This is our first sale in the region for a newly-built naval ship. The cooperation and strong partnership with ENL solidifies our presence in New Zealand,” says Ellen Molin, Head of business area Support and Services for Saab.
HMNZS Aotearoa will sustain New Zealand’s defence forces with fuel, fresh water, equipment and ammunition. It will also be ice-strengthened and ‘winterised’ for operations in Antarctica. This will allow the ship to deliver fuel and other goods to support the Scott Base and McMurdo Station, during the summer months once an icebreaker has cleared a path. Regardless of the situation, the RNZN will have a flexible and easy-to-use communications system at hand.
“Because of the intuitive nature of the human-machine-interface, the RNZN gets a system that is easy to operate even in complex situations. When the stakes are raised a TactiCall operator is less likely to make an error and can solve the task more quickly and effectively.”
New Zealand’s new naval tanker is currently being built by Hyundai Heavy Industries in South Korea and is scheduled to be delivered in 2020.
The new ship will replace the 30-year old tanker HMNZS Endeavour. It will be able to refuel two ships at the same time while underway, carry and refuel New Zealand Defence Force helicopters, produce and store water, and store and transport bulk goods.
Saab’s TactiCall integrated communications system is the result of more than 30 years of experience in designing naval communication solutions. It is an operationally proven communications system in service today on board 20 different vessel classes in the navies of nine different countries.
“This marks our second sale of our multi-level secure version of TactiCall, which recently won NATO’s innovation award, the NITEC17 Defence Innovation Challenge.”
ENL Group Managing Director Gareth Hodson says it’s pleasing to see a New Zealand based company involved in Royal New Zealand Navy contracts.
“ENL’s business and technical resource has been strategically focused toward Naval defence requirements since it’s successful bid in 2005 for the Project Protector Fleet. It is very satisfying to win this bid in support of Saab based on our added value and proven capability to support large complex electronics solutions such as these,” says Hodson.