HMAS
Paluma
(IV)

HMAS Paluma (IV) at sea
Class
Paluma Class
Type
Role
  • Hydrographic survey
  • Support
Pennant
A01
International Callsign
VLRY
Motto
Search With Diligence
Builder
Eglo, Adelaide
Laid Down
21 February 1988
Launched
6 February 1989
Commissioned
27 February 1989
Decommissioned
18 September 2021
Dimensions & Displacement
Displacement 325 tonnes
Length 36.6 metres
Beam 12.8 metres
Draught 2.65 metres
Performance
Speed 11 knots
Range 3600 nautical miles
Complement
Crew 15
Propulsion
Machinery 2 x Detroit 12V-92TA diesels
Armament
Radars Kelvin Hughes 1007
Sonars Thales Petrel three-dimensional forward looking active high frequency
Awards
Inherited Battle Honours NEW GUINEA 1942-44
Resources
News Articles
Image Gallery
HMAS Paluma (IV) ships badge

HMAS Paluma (IV) was the first ship of the Paluma Class (SML) and the fourth to bear the name Paluma. HMAS Paluma is a custom built survey vessel, designed for surveying in the shallow coastal waters of the Great Barrier Reef and Northern Australia. She was built by Eglo Engineering of Adelaide in November 1987 and Commissioned on 27 February 1989. Her catamaran design provides good stability in rough weather and allows her to sit well out of the water, drawing only 2.2 metres (a favourable design for operating in shoaling and reef waters).

She has three sister ships: HMAS Mermaid, Shepparton (II) and Benalla (II) and operates in a pair with her sister ship HMAS Mermaid. This teaming of the two ships provides mutual support allowing them to operate safety in the remote areas they are required to survey.

HMAS Paluma (IV) carries the very latest in survey equipment. Position fixing on the survey grounds is carried out by Wide Area GPS and Differential GPS navigation systems. The positional data is integrated with depth information obtained from Paluma's two echo sounders (one in each demi-hull). Each demi-hull also has a side scanning sonar in order to detect bottom features missed by the echo sounders as she steers down a survey line. All depth information is corrected for heave by heave compensators, (also one in each demi-hull). A Skipper searchlight sonar, located in the starboard demi-hull gives the Officer of the Watch early warning of dangers lying ahead of the ship.

HMAS Paluma (IV) and her sister ship HMAS Mermaid decommissioned on 18 September 2021.

Seaman Hydrographic Systems Operator Glen Cooksey mans the sonar suite onboard Survey Motor Launch, HMAS Paluma during the minor war vessel concentration period 2011.
Seaman Hydrographic Systems Operator Glen Cooksey mans the sonar suite onboard Survey Motor Launch, HMAS Paluma during the minor war vessel concentration period 2011.
HMAS Paluma returns to HMAS Cairns after a family day out on the water.
HMAS Paluma returns to HMAS Cairns after a family day out on the water.