The MH-60 Romeo first of class flight trials onboard the Landing Helicopter Dock (LHD) HMAS Adelaide were conducted off the coast of Queensland.
The trials were conducted by Adelaide, Aircraft Maintenance and Flight Trials Unit (AMAFTU) and 816 Squadron from HMAS Albatross who fly the Seahawks.
The trials are conducted to determine the safe operating limits of the Romeos on the LHD, in a range of sea states and wind speeds, by day and by night.
The MH-60R Romeo is the navy's next generation submarine hunter and anti-surface warfare helicopter.
The training is essential and ensures navy maintains its readiness to conduct humanitarian assistance and disaster relief operations in support of the Australian people and our neighbours.
Lieutenant Commander Chris Broadbent said the trials are important as it gives navy the opportunity to create the capability between the MH-60 Romeo and LHD class of ships by increasing the range of environmental conditions the two can operate in together.
"The capability of those first of class flight trials is the opportunity to operate the Seahawk in a greater range of configurations, so it will be better suited to a configuration for anti-submarine warfare (ASW), anti-surface warfare (ASUW), and also give us the opportunity to operate the Seahawk as a HADR (humanitarian assistance and disaster relief) platform potentially depending on its configuration," he said.
The trials have been conducted in the Coral Sea, where temperatures are a little warmer to assess the performance of the aircraft in higher temperatures.
"We also hope to get some pitch and roll induced to the ship's deck through a sea state and higher wind from the head of the ship so we can assess the aircraft's performance in high winds," LCDR Broadbent said.
"Once we finished with the high winds we hope to get light variable winds so we can work at the bottom end of the spectrum also.
"Throughout the flight trials on Adelaide we are collecting a lot of data from the flying, through the instrumentation system on the aircraft which is fed back to the ship for analysis post flight trial.
"What we hope to do is expand the envelope that we operate, including investigating things like running take offs, very rapid transfer evolution and landing and taking off on the various spots on the ship."