CANBERRA: The Australian government has ordered the Multi Ammunition Softkill System, or MASS to equip Royal Australian Navy’s (RAN) Hobart-class destroyers and ANZAC-class frigate. The order is worth $139.5 million in sales.
The first systems are to be delivered by the end of 2023, with full operational capability achieved by 2027. This is the Rheinmetall’s single-biggest order ever for ship protection technology. Total sales volume could potentially come to $675 million, as the contract includes an option for equipping Australia’s entire fleet.
The MASS systems for the RAN will be assembled at Rheinmetall Defence Australia’s MILVEHCOE centre of excellence for military vehicles. This will result in new possibilities for expanding the Group’s Australian supply chain. MASS offers potential partners in the Australian defence sector the chance to cooperate with Rheinmetall and the Royal Australian Navy in realizing this important defensive capability.
“The order underscores once again the great effectiveness of MASS. Australia is now the 16th user nation. We continue to work closely with our colleagues at Rheinmetall Defence Australia, who are responsible for production in country. The largest possible share of value added will thus be generated in Australia, a major plus for the customer”, said product manager for softkill protection systems at Rheinmetall Waffe Munition, Martin Feg.
“The contract, the first naval contract awarded to Rheinmetall Defence Australia represents a significant milestone as the company grows its local industrial footprint with further advanced assembly and training system capabilities in Australia”, said managing director of Rheinmetall Defence Australia, Nathan Poyner. “Rheinmetall is committed to building Australian Industry Capability and creating advanced manufacturing Australian jobs in trades including Mechanical, Electrical, Ammunition and Software.“
Because the contract includes the transfer of MASS technology, Rheinmetall Defence Australia will be able to produce the systems under licence, before installing and commissioning them onboard Australia’s seagoing surface combatants.—shp/adj/aaa (Image: Rheinmetall)