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Amberley welcomes full RAAF Growler fleet

written by australianaviation.com.au | July 7, 2017
All 12 Growlers are now on strength at RAAF Base Amberley. (Defence)

The delivery of Australia’s full complement of 12 Boeing EA-18G Growler airborne electronic attack aircraft to RAAF Base Amberley has been marked with a ceremony at the base on Friday.

“Australian Growlers have already conducted successful weapon firings and integration flights with RAAF F/A-18F Super Hornets and US Navy EA-18G Growlers as part of operational test and evaluation,” said Chief of Air Force Air Marshal Leo Davies.

“We have also had the graduation of the first operational transition course.

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“Through our partnership with the US Navy, we are already planning to keep Growler at the forefront of electronic attack capability throughout the life of the aircraft.”

The Growler, operated by Amberley-based 6 Squadron, is capable of providing force-level electronic warfare support by disrupting, deceiving or denying a broad range of electronic systems, including radar and communications systems.

“We are the only country outside the United States operating the EA-18G Growler, and the full fleet arrival represents a significant leap forward in joint electronic warfare capability,” said Minister for Defence Senator Marise Payne.

“The EA-18G Growlers will work with Army and Navy to deliver a networked joint force able to manoeuvre and fight in the electromagnetic spectrum.”

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The aircraft is based on the Super Hornet airframe and fitted with additional avionics, enhanced radio frequency receivers, an improved communications suite and radio frequency jamming pods.

The RAAF’s first EA-18G was rolled out in a ceremony at Boeing’s St Louis facility in July 2015. The aircraft were originally placed into storage until being delivered to NAS Whidbey Island, Washington State, where 6 Squadron trained on the aircraft alongside the US Navy.

The first Growlers arrived in Australia in February.

Air Commander Australia Air Vice-Marshal Steve Roberton, Minister for Defence Senator Marise Payne, Chief of Air Force Air Marshal Leo Davies, commanding officer 6 Squadron Wing Commander Grant Fifield, and Officer Commanding 82 Wing Group Captain Glen Braz. (Defence)

25% off starts now! Australian Aviation magazine Cyber Monday sale is now live. Have the very best of Australian Aviation’s annual print and digital subscription. This includes every In Focus and Behind the Lens digital magazine, special coverage, exclusive photos and editions you may have miss. Subscribe now at australianaviation.com.au.

32 Comments

  • PAUL

    says:

    Nice Machine! wonder if that part of the Aircraft was warm to the touch….

  • Paul

    says:

    It’s just a beast.Now it only needs those EPE engines.

  • Hayden.R

    says:

    as a SE QLD resident i cant wait to see these in the air at displays (fingers crossed for riverfire!)

  • Harry

    says:

    Such a game changer! I hope we plan on getting the NGJ in the future too! And, maybe even proposed SH upgrades inc. conformal fuel tanks and the rest!

  • Mick181

    says:

    Hayden whats the big deal about the Growler in a Air display? A fully kitted out Growler would not be a particularly acrobatic aircraft by modern standards, it’s not expected to Dog Fight, it has other ways to defend itself.. Without the Kit it’s just another SHornet, rather see it on the ground with its equip displayed in front of it and watch a Super Hornet being piloted by a pilot who spends a lot more time practicing his Dog Fighting skills.

  • Mick181

    says:

    Harry we are helping the US to develop the NGJ.

  • Paul

    says:

    Hayden R,I live on the sunny coast,where do u live?I am going to Amberley next week.Pm ASAP if u can

  • Gary

    says:

    Harry – given our just under 200 million dollar investment in the development of the NGJ, you can count on it being in our inventory.

  • Paul

    says:

    The upgraded Rhino is now on the cards.Would be great to bring them up to Blk111 specs.Couple that with the F-35 and all our enablers,we are the toughest kids on the block.

  • Chris

    says:

    Harry,
    We just signed an agreement to work closely with, invest in the R&D, contribute to design and provide local skills to the NGJ.
    We were always going to get it once it became available. We’re now going to help build it as well.

  • Hayden.R

    says:

    Paul,
    yep on the sunshine coast, up in the hills too!

  • PAUL

    says:

    EPE’s rated at 26000lbs thrust per engine on a Super would be fun for Riverfire. As for the Growler not even the RAF have that capability so touché to the RAAF!

  • Corey D

    says:

    No.1 Squadron always buzz the Sunshine Coast airport and I mean ALL THE TIME! I use to live right under the flight path and the RAAF are there on an almost weekly basis doing training from the C-17s, Super Hornets, C-130, and C-27J. We even have the Special Purpose fleet VIP BBJ737 and CL604 often as well. I use to live under the flight path for a short final. So those living on the coast we will see these babies very soon if not already. On the other note, the RAAF is already working with DOD and Boeing on the ADVANCED GROWLER, not the block iii. The RAAF have confirmed that they’re already requesting and looking into it when they first arrived so I hope it isn’t too much longer before the upgrades happen. Would be nice to see some more growlers in the fleet though along with Advanced E/F Super Hornets since it’s now proven they can work well with the F-35s.

  • Jasonp

    says:

    What’s an “ADVANCED GROWLER” Corey? Does Boeing or the US Navy know about it yet?

  • Paul

    says:

    Advanced Super Hornet has been given the go.Good news for the RAAF.

  • Boleropilot

    says:

    G’day Corey – I live on a ridge crest about 10nm South of the threshold of 33, just South West of Flinders Peak – with binoculars I can see the smoke from the C17 tyres when they touch down on 33. In the past the Rhinos would return to YAMB (from bomb/refuel practice I assume) on a track fairly close to Flinders Peak. Last week four of them came through a lot lower than usual and further to the West, right over the top of our house – pretty amazing sight for me with the second two, the first two were already half way to Amberley before I could get out onto my North verandah!

    Maybe they saw my giant QLD flag and decided to give me a treat – hope so! It will be replaced with a big Australian flag after Wednesday night but they are always welcome to use it as a waypoint…..

    I was at Amberley when the Phantoms were there, and I saw the mighty Pigs come and go – the Rhinos are a magic piece of kit, first time I got up close to one I thought it looked like it had been machined out of a huge block of aluminium – the F35 may be a hot piece of kit but it kinda leaves me cold……

  • Gary

    says:

    Jason – as much as Corey can become excited with platforms – if you want to know more about the Advanced Growler, try Google and read the article from Aviation Week citing US Navy sources.

  • Jasonp

    says:

    Sorry, I should have been more specific…does Boeing or the US Navy know that the RAAF is “working with” them?

  • Gary

    says:

    Jason – yes. As with the F/A-18F, the RAAF maintains ongoing discussions with the USN and Boeing on all developments of both aircraft.

  • Corey D

    says:

    Yes the Advanced Growler/Block III is already in the pipelines and the RAAF have stated they want then Growlers upgraded ASAP with CFTs and so forth. It was stated in a video which was released by the RAAF a few months ago. I’m surprised not many people know about it.

  • Paul

    says:

    With the rising cost of the F-35c around 7%,this move by the USN to upgrade the Rhino to BLK111 standard makes perfect sense.

  • Mick181

    says:

    Paul you are wrong.
    The F-35 is comming down in price as production is ramping up $84m each from 2019 down from $92m at present.

  • Paul

    says:

    Mick181,Your wrong mate,check your sources

  • Craig

    says:

    @Paul
    The 7% increase in program costs is associated with the reduced annual buy extending the program by 6 years. Any increase in unit costs is directly related to the negotiations between Lockheed, Pratt and Whitney, and the US government. The trend is still a reducing flyaway cost.

  • Paul

    says:

    Craig,we hope so don’t we.

  • Mick181

    says:

    Paul
    Sorry you are correct, those are the facts for the F-35A and you were talking about the F-35C, my apologies.
    Haven’t really taken much notice of whats happening with the C model as it’s not in the running for the RAAF.

  • Paul

    says:

    With Lock Mart own estimates today of 94.6 mil per jet,the price has risen to 101.4 mil per jet.Hopefully the production rate ramps up.

  • Paul

    says:

    Mick 181,no problem mate.

  • Hayden.R

    says:

    I’ll be there!

  • Paul

    says:

    How many passes do they do?do they do a full demo? And do they use burner?

  • Hayden.R

    says:

    I dont know what i’m excited about, its realy the same as the rhino’s!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Amberley welcomes full RAAF Growler fleet

written by australianaviation.com.au | July 7, 2017
All 12 Growlers are now on strength at RAAF Base Amberley. (Defence)

The delivery of Australia’s full complement of 12 Boeing EA-18G Growler airborne electronic attack aircraft to RAAF Base Amberley has been marked with a ceremony at the base on Friday.

“Australian Growlers have already conducted successful weapon firings and integration flights with RAAF F/A-18F Super Hornets and US Navy EA-18G Growlers as part of operational test and evaluation,” said Chief of Air Force Air Marshal Leo Davies.

“We have also had the graduation of the first operational transition course.

Advertisement
Advertisement

“Through our partnership with the US Navy, we are already planning to keep Growler at the forefront of electronic attack capability throughout the life of the aircraft.”

The Growler, operated by Amberley-based 6 Squadron, is capable of providing force-level electronic warfare support by disrupting, deceiving or denying a broad range of electronic systems, including radar and communications systems.

“We are the only country outside the United States operating the EA-18G Growler, and the full fleet arrival represents a significant leap forward in joint electronic warfare capability,” said Minister for Defence Senator Marise Payne.

“The EA-18G Growlers will work with Army and Navy to deliver a networked joint force able to manoeuvre and fight in the electromagnetic spectrum.”

PROMOTED CONTENT

The aircraft is based on the Super Hornet airframe and fitted with additional avionics, enhanced radio frequency receivers, an improved communications suite and radio frequency jamming pods.

The RAAF’s first EA-18G was rolled out in a ceremony at Boeing’s St Louis facility in July 2015. The aircraft were originally placed into storage until being delivered to NAS Whidbey Island, Washington State, where 6 Squadron trained on the aircraft alongside the US Navy.

The first Growlers arrived in Australia in February.

Air Commander Australia Air Vice-Marshal Steve Roberton, Minister for Defence Senator Marise Payne, Chief of Air Force Air Marshal Leo Davies, commanding officer 6 Squadron Wing Commander Grant Fifield, and Officer Commanding 82 Wing Group Captain Glen Braz. (Defence)

25% off starts now! Australian Aviation magazine Cyber Monday sale is now live. Have the very best of Australian Aviation’s annual print and digital subscription. This includes every In Focus and Behind the Lens digital magazine, special coverage, exclusive photos and editions you may have miss. Subscribe now at australianaviation.com.au.

32 Comments

  • PAUL

    says:

    Nice Machine! wonder if that part of the Aircraft was warm to the touch….

  • Paul

    says:

    It’s just a beast.Now it only needs those EPE engines.

  • Hayden.R

    says:

    as a SE QLD resident i cant wait to see these in the air at displays (fingers crossed for riverfire!)

  • Harry

    says:

    Such a game changer! I hope we plan on getting the NGJ in the future too! And, maybe even proposed SH upgrades inc. conformal fuel tanks and the rest!

  • Mick181

    says:

    Hayden whats the big deal about the Growler in a Air display? A fully kitted out Growler would not be a particularly acrobatic aircraft by modern standards, it’s not expected to Dog Fight, it has other ways to defend itself.. Without the Kit it’s just another SHornet, rather see it on the ground with its equip displayed in front of it and watch a Super Hornet being piloted by a pilot who spends a lot more time practicing his Dog Fighting skills.

  • Mick181

    says:

    Harry we are helping the US to develop the NGJ.

  • Paul

    says:

    Hayden R,I live on the sunny coast,where do u live?I am going to Amberley next week.Pm ASAP if u can

  • Gary

    says:

    Harry – given our just under 200 million dollar investment in the development of the NGJ, you can count on it being in our inventory.

  • Paul

    says:

    The upgraded Rhino is now on the cards.Would be great to bring them up to Blk111 specs.Couple that with the F-35 and all our enablers,we are the toughest kids on the block.

  • Chris

    says:

    Harry,
    We just signed an agreement to work closely with, invest in the R&D, contribute to design and provide local skills to the NGJ.
    We were always going to get it once it became available. We’re now going to help build it as well.

  • Hayden.R

    says:

    Paul,
    yep on the sunshine coast, up in the hills too!

  • PAUL

    says:

    EPE’s rated at 26000lbs thrust per engine on a Super would be fun for Riverfire. As for the Growler not even the RAF have that capability so touché to the RAAF!

  • Corey D

    says:

    No.1 Squadron always buzz the Sunshine Coast airport and I mean ALL THE TIME! I use to live right under the flight path and the RAAF are there on an almost weekly basis doing training from the C-17s, Super Hornets, C-130, and C-27J. We even have the Special Purpose fleet VIP BBJ737 and CL604 often as well. I use to live under the flight path for a short final. So those living on the coast we will see these babies very soon if not already. On the other note, the RAAF is already working with DOD and Boeing on the ADVANCED GROWLER, not the block iii. The RAAF have confirmed that they’re already requesting and looking into it when they first arrived so I hope it isn’t too much longer before the upgrades happen. Would be nice to see some more growlers in the fleet though along with Advanced E/F Super Hornets since it’s now proven they can work well with the F-35s.

  • Jasonp

    says:

    What’s an “ADVANCED GROWLER” Corey? Does Boeing or the US Navy know about it yet?

  • Paul

    says:

    Advanced Super Hornet has been given the go.Good news for the RAAF.

  • Boleropilot

    says:

    G’day Corey – I live on a ridge crest about 10nm South of the threshold of 33, just South West of Flinders Peak – with binoculars I can see the smoke from the C17 tyres when they touch down on 33. In the past the Rhinos would return to YAMB (from bomb/refuel practice I assume) on a track fairly close to Flinders Peak. Last week four of them came through a lot lower than usual and further to the West, right over the top of our house – pretty amazing sight for me with the second two, the first two were already half way to Amberley before I could get out onto my North verandah!

    Maybe they saw my giant QLD flag and decided to give me a treat – hope so! It will be replaced with a big Australian flag after Wednesday night but they are always welcome to use it as a waypoint…..

    I was at Amberley when the Phantoms were there, and I saw the mighty Pigs come and go – the Rhinos are a magic piece of kit, first time I got up close to one I thought it looked like it had been machined out of a huge block of aluminium – the F35 may be a hot piece of kit but it kinda leaves me cold……

  • Gary

    says:

    Jason – as much as Corey can become excited with platforms – if you want to know more about the Advanced Growler, try Google and read the article from Aviation Week citing US Navy sources.

  • Jasonp

    says:

    Sorry, I should have been more specific…does Boeing or the US Navy know that the RAAF is “working with” them?

  • Gary

    says:

    Jason – yes. As with the F/A-18F, the RAAF maintains ongoing discussions with the USN and Boeing on all developments of both aircraft.

  • Corey D

    says:

    Yes the Advanced Growler/Block III is already in the pipelines and the RAAF have stated they want then Growlers upgraded ASAP with CFTs and so forth. It was stated in a video which was released by the RAAF a few months ago. I’m surprised not many people know about it.

  • Paul

    says:

    With the rising cost of the F-35c around 7%,this move by the USN to upgrade the Rhino to BLK111 standard makes perfect sense.

  • Mick181

    says:

    Paul you are wrong.
    The F-35 is comming down in price as production is ramping up $84m each from 2019 down from $92m at present.

  • Paul

    says:

    Mick181,Your wrong mate,check your sources

  • Craig

    says:

    @Paul
    The 7% increase in program costs is associated with the reduced annual buy extending the program by 6 years. Any increase in unit costs is directly related to the negotiations between Lockheed, Pratt and Whitney, and the US government. The trend is still a reducing flyaway cost.

  • Paul

    says:

    Craig,we hope so don’t we.

  • Mick181

    says:

    Paul
    Sorry you are correct, those are the facts for the F-35A and you were talking about the F-35C, my apologies.
    Haven’t really taken much notice of whats happening with the C model as it’s not in the running for the RAAF.

  • Paul

    says:

    With Lock Mart own estimates today of 94.6 mil per jet,the price has risen to 101.4 mil per jet.Hopefully the production rate ramps up.

  • Paul

    says:

    Mick 181,no problem mate.

  • Hayden.R

    says:

    I’ll be there!

  • Paul

    says:

    How many passes do they do?do they do a full demo? And do they use burner?

  • Hayden.R

    says:

    I dont know what i’m excited about, its realy the same as the rhino’s!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

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