Combat system dominance: 10 million hours, delivering for world-class defence programs
Raytheon Australia creates a national capability
Raytheon Australia has surpassed more than 10 million hours of complex combat system integration work in Australia, the first defence company in Australia to achieve such a milestone. Meet some of the people proud to be a part of the team behind those hours.
AWD Combat System Chief Engineer & Engineering Fellow
I’m Brad and I started with Raytheon Australia as the Electronic Warfare technical lead for the Air Warfare Destroyer program 10 years ago. Since then I have had a number of roles which have included responsibility for the 3,400 items of combat system equipment required to establish the warfighting capability of the AWD.
As the AWD Combat System Chief Engineer I have been part of the team delivering the AWDs through very demanding, yet rewarding phases, of the project. As part of this role, I led the combat system team through the harbour and sea trials acceptance program, spending over six weeks at sea on HMAS Hobart.
Working hand-in-hand with the embedded Navy personnel in taking the ship to sea and exercising the combat system through its full suite of capabilities, is something I will remember for the rest of my life.
Our combat system team is driven by a passion to solve difficult problems. Whether it is determining the electromagnetic interference effects of our equipment, or modelling our sensor detection ranges, or ensuring all the weapons and radars are aligned to within fractions of a degree, or designing equipment to withstand the effects of a torpedo detonation; this job is ideal for engineers and technicians with a drive to push the limits of technology in order to deliver a real world capability.
Lead Systems Engineer
My name is Jessica, and I am a Lead Systems Engineer with Raytheon Australia. I have contributed over five years to the combat system integration work of two naval programs: the Air Warfare Destroyer (AWD) program, and the Collins Class submarine program.
I started my career with Raytheon as part of the navigation team for the AWD project, and I have since worked on the navigation, communication and tactical systems for the Collins Class submarines.
Having had the opportunity to work on these programs, it is clear to me that as a company we have an acute understanding of system architecture and the implementation of systems engineering to manage and integrate complex, large scale projects. The ability to not only understand but effectively architect the system based on the assessed coupling and cohesion of project subsystems and components allows for effective integration in delivering complex systems.
I do see and feel a strong sense of being part of one team. Our company’s strategic view enables us to remain aligned in our efforts to problem solve at the high level required, remaining cognisant of long term developments and growth. I believe we are continually motivated to succeed as a team on individual projects, within a program, as a company, and more broadly to support the Australian Defence Force.
It is incredibly rewarding knowing we are contributing to Australia’s defence capability. Understanding the value in the work we do is inspiring.
Communications and Information Systems Project Manager
I am Brodie and I started with Raytheon Australia eight years ago as a university graduate and have been working on the Air Warfare Destroyer program since then. In that time I’ve worked across a number of systems engineering and project management positions. Recently, I took up the position of Communications and Information Systems Project Manager, managing the team responsible for the design, build, integration and test of the communications on board the Hobart Class Destroyers.
In my view, Raytheon Australia have strong project management and systems engineering processes and a strong culture in these areas. One thing that works very well when tackling complex programs is breaking a problem down into its component parts, which is where a strong project management and engineering approach can be very beneficial and I think is what has led to the strong budget and schedule results Raytheon has seen.
In addition to Raytheon Australia surpassing 10 million hours of combat system design, development and integration recently, we’ve built experience with local and international supply chains and working with international partners.
The AWD program has been a great program to be a part of; it’s exciting, challenging, rewarding and there’s been a number of very proud moments such as when HMAS Hobart sailed for sea trials and delivery and her commissioning last year.
AWD Engineering Manager & Engineering Fellow
I am Des, and I have been with Raytheon Australia for the past 18 years. I am currently the Engineering Manager on the Air Warfare Destroyer (AWD) program.
As an ex-serviceman, I take pride in delivering lead-edge defence materiel through the application of the extensive education and training I received during my 21 years of service.
On the AWD program, Raytheon Australia has successfully integrated ten major subsystems of the combat system, including the Aegis Weapon System, and delivered more than 3,500 individual items of combat system equipment required to generate the warfighting capability of the DDG Class.
These warships will be the most capable and advanced ever operated by the Royal Australian Navy, and I have no doubt they will significantly enhance Australia’s military edge over their service life.
I enjoy the challenges of my work, and the opportunity to solve complex engineering problems. As we have demonstrated on AWD, we manage complexity through methodical, top-down decomposition of programs together with well-documented and proven processes. We then execute program plans under effective governance frameworks. This means we are able to identify any potential risks early and manage them accordingly.
The team I work with is motivated by a sense of pride in what they do for the customer and striving to maintain Raytheon Australia’s reputation for industry-leading program performance.
General Manager Mission Solutions
My name is Julie and during my seventeen years at Raytheon Australia, I’ve learnt that a strong systems engineering capability backed by domain knowledge, specialist engineering and operational experience is the cornerstone of any combat system integration program. As part of Raytheon Australia’s combat system integration workforce, I have held various roles including the Program Manager for the Hobart Class Command Team Trainer.
For me, meeting the end user of a system puts into perspective just how important the work that we undertake is. There is a sense of responsibility to outfit our defence customer with the best possible capability – because in a combat situation they need everything to work – and work well. Our Raytheon Australia team has many years’ experience working hand-in-hand with our defence customer on complex programs such as the Air Warfare Destroyer. In my view, this work is fundamental to the success of future complex combat system programs.
Our customer focus, coupled with proven and mature tools and processes, provide the framework for us to deliver whole of life integration solutions for Defence.
Being one of only a handful of companies in Australia with US combat system experience, our people understand how to keep sensitive technologies secure through established data management protocols.
Ultimately, delivering for our customer a superior capability that will keep Australia secure is the main factor that drives me and the teams that I have worked with.
Director, Engineering & Engineering Fellow
My name is Michael, and I have been with Raytheon Australia for 14 years. Currently, I am Director of Engineering and in this role, I work across all the engineering activities in the company.
In my opinion, the Air Warfare Destroyer combat system has been one of the most complex systems integration tasks conducted in recent times - and we completed it successfully achieving cost, schedule and quality measures.
I put this down to the team we have built up over almost two decades of supporting the Royal Australian Navy in complex systems integration tasks. The relationships, experience and familiarity that we have built up as a team over time means that we approach projects with a strength and experience that is unmatched in the industry.
I also believe that the tools and processes Raytheon Australia has implemented support our people and projects. It means engineers, like myself, can focus on the technical challenges of a program. Regardless of the program I am on – whether it be AWD, Collins Class submarines or any of our other integration programs – there’s the guarantee that the team I am in will have processes and tools at our disposal to get the job done.
I also see our relationship with Navy as a critical factor in our successes. It is difficult to develop a system correctly if we don’t understand how it is going to be used. We engage with our customer at every step of the journey and develop the best system for them to use.
10 Million hours and counting
Raytheon Australia has surpassed 10 million hours of complex combat system integration work in Australia, the first defence company in Australia to achieve such a milestone.
The company's combat system integration workforce has been applied to both the Air Warfare Destroyer and Collins Class Submarine programs. The successful outcomes for these and other complex programs have been delivered through operations across the country in South Australia, New South Wales, the Australian Capital Territory, and Western Australia.
"The success of our combat system integration activity is a source of tremendous pride for Raytheon Australia. It is because of our people, supported by our established tools and process, that this milestone has come about," said Michael Ward, managing director of Raytheon Australia. “Our Raytheon Australia team has performed admirably on the programs we have been involved with and have built for Australia a national asset in combat system integration.”
“Raytheon Australia engineers and technicians have developed the unique skills to integrate at a ‘systems-of systems' level, delivering regionally superior capability to our customers including the Royal Australian Navy,” Ward said.
Raytheon Australia was established as a full subsidiary of Raytheon Company of the United States in 1999 in response to the Howard Government's defence industry policy. This policy made clear that an international defence contractor's commitment to Australia would be measured by the extent of its investment in Australian sovereign capability.
Raytheon was amongst the first to invest in Australia in this way and has since grown to employ 1300 Australians. Today, the heart of Raytheon Australia's capability is the company's 500 strong combat systems workforce. This team brings substantial expertise in combat system design, development, integration and test, as well as in complex program management, integrated logistics support and technical governance.
Raytheon Australia’s combat system workforce stands ready to work with Defence on future projects and to continue to partner with the Australian Defence Force in their mission to protect Australia and its national interest.