HMAS Melbourne (III) participates in Officer of the Watch Manoeuvres during Exercise PACIFIC VANGUARD 2019.
Decommissioning on 26 October 2019
Commanding Officer
Adelaide Class
  • Undersea Warfare
  • Over the Horizon Targeting
  • Surveillance
  • Boarding Support
  • Search and Rescue (SAR)
  • Utility Operations
FFG 05
International Callsign
Vires Acquirit Eundo
Home Port
Australian Marine Eng (Consolidated), Williamstown
Laid Down
12 July 1985
5 May 1989
15 February 1992
Dimensions & Displacement
Displacement 4267 tonnes
Length 138.1 metres
Beam 13.7 metres
Draught 4.5 metres
Speed 29 knots
Range 4500 nautical miles
Crew 199
  • 2 GE LM 2500 gas turbines
  • 2 auxiliary electric retractable propulsors
  • Harpoon Block 2
  • Standard SM-2 Block IIIA
  • Mk 41 VLS launcher
  • 1 x OTO Melara 3 in (76 mm)/62 US Mk 75
  • 1 x 20 mm Mk 15 Vulcan Phalanx anti-missile system
  • 6 x 12.7 mm MGs
  • 2 x Rafael Mini-Typhoon 12.7 mm remote-controlled guns (for selected deployments).
Torpedoes 6 x Mk 32 (2 triple) tubes
Physical Countermeasures
  • 4 x Loral Hycor SRBOC Mk 36 or TERMA SKWS
  • 2 x Rafael long-range chaff rocket launchers
  • LESCUT torpedo countermeasures
Electronic Countermeasures
  • Elbit EA-2118 jammer
  • Rafael C-Pearl
  • Raytheon SPS-49A(V)1
  • ISC Cardion SPS-55
  • Lockheed SPG-60
  • Sperry Mk 92 Mod 12
  • Thales Spherion (TMS 4131)
  • Petrel (TMS 5424) mine avoidance
  • Albatros (TMS 4350) towed-array torpedo warning system
Combat Data Systems ADACS. OE-2 SATCOM; Link 11. Link 16.
Weapon Control Systems
  • Sperry Mk 92 Mod 12 gun and missile control
  • Radamec 2500 optronic director with TV, laser and IR imager
  • 2 x Sikorsky S-70B-2 Seahawks or
  • 1 x Seahawk and 1 x Squirrel
Inherited Battle Honours
Battle Honours
News Articles
Image Gallery
HMAS Melbourne (III) Badge

HMAS Melbourne (III) is the last commissioned Adelaide class guided missile frigate (FFG) in the Royal Australian Navy's fleet. The ship is a long-range escort prioritised for area air defence and fully capable of surface and undersea warfare, surveillance, reconnaissance and interdiction. The ship can counter simultaneous threats from aircraft, surface vessels and submarines. In order to maintain her effectiveness against contemporary threats, the ship underwent a significant upgrade in the mid-2000s. This included upgrades to the combat system, radars, sensors and new missiles.

An Evolved Sea Sparrow Missile (ESSM) is launched from the Vertical Launch System of HMAS Melbourne off the coast of NSW.
An Evolved Sea Sparrow Missile (ESSM) is launched from the Vertical Launch System of HMAS Melbourne off the coast of NSW.

At the time of their commissioning, Melbourne (III) and her five sister ships were the first RAN ships to be powered by gas turbines. This, combined with a modern repair by replacement policy, has allowed both a reduced complement and a high availability for sea duty. In addition, two forward mounted retractable auxiliary propulsion units provide a secondary means of propulsion plus excellent manoeuvrability in confined waters.

The ship is also equipped with a sophisticated computer-based command and control system that fully integrates her significant suite of weapons and sensors to enable rapid and effective weapon employment when required.

Designed for helicopter operations, Melbourne (III) is capable of embarking and employing the new MH-60R ‘Romeo’ helicopter further extending the reach and lethality of the ship. With a full flight embarked, Melbourne (III) can accommodate up to 232 officers and crew.

HMAS Melbourne fires a Standard Missile 2 from its Guided Missile Launching System during RIMPAC 2018.
HMAS Melbourne fires a Standard Missile 2 from its Guided Missile Launching System during RIMPAC 2018.

Melbourne (III) deployed to the Arabian Gulf during 2002 as part of the Multinational Interception Force (MIF) enforcing United Nation's sanctions against Iraq, and again to the Middle East in 2010, 2013 and 2015 as part of the Combined Maritime Force (CMF) promoting maritime security, stability and prosperity in the region.

HMAS Melbourne at sunrise.
HMAS Melbourne at sunrise.

The name Melbourne has been carried by two former RAN warships: a light cruiser 1913-1928, and an aircraft carrier 1955-1982.

The ship's motto, 'VIRES ACQUIRIT EUNDO', translates as 'She Gathers Strength As She Goes'.

After more than 28 years of service in the Royal Australian Navy, HMAS Melbourne will decommission at Garden Island, Fleet Base East on Saturday, 26 October 2019.

HMAS Melbourne departs Brunei during Indo-Pacific Endeavour 2017.
HMAS Melbourne departs Brunei during Indo-Pacific Endeavour 2017.


Middle East Region Deployments

Contributing to stable, rules-based global security is one of Australia's national objectives. Since 1990, the Royal Australian Navy has conducted maritime security operations in the Middle East region (MER), which remains strategically important to Australia's economic and trade interests.

Ship Rotation No Year Operation
HMAS Melbourne (III) 61 2015/2016 Operation MANITOU
HMAS Melbourne (III) 56 2013/2014 Operation SLIPPER
HMAS Melbourne (III) 52 2012 Operation SLIPPER
HMAS Melbourne (III) 48 2010/2011 Operation SLIPPER
HMAS Melbourne (III) 29 2003/2004 Operation CATALYST
HMAS Melbourne (III) 21 2002 Operation SLIPPER
HMAS Melbourne (III) 13 1999 Operation DAMASK
HMAS Melbourne (III) 12 1996 Operation DAMASK