HMAS Sydney departed her home port at Fleet Base East last week to conduct trials on her AEGIS weapons system with the United States Navy.

The tests are a crucial milestone in order for Sydney to be declared available for operational deployments. 

Wishing Sydney fair winds and following seas on her deployment to the US to undergo her combat systems sea qualification trials there and in Canada, Fleet Commander Rear Admiral Mark Hammond said the deployment marked the culmination of more than a decade of work by the Australian Shipbuilding Industry to deliver this war-fighting capability to Navy, and represented Sydney’s final milestone in the ship’s introduction into service.

Rear Admiral Hammond wished Commanding Officer Sydney Commander Edward Seymour and his crew a successful deployment, and expressed his thanks to all the families and friends for the support shown to their loved ones during the deployment.

HMAS Sydney passes sister ship HMAS Brisbane as they depart Garden Island in Sydney. Photo: Leading Seaman Tara Morrison 

Sydney is the last of the three Hobart-class guided missile destroyers to conduct the testing. 

The ship’s company of Sydney voluntarily received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine ahead of the North American deployment and Sydney sailed with a full crew.

In accordance with Department of Health guidelines, members of the ship’s company were encouraged to report to medical personnel if they were feeling unwell after their vaccination.

Some members experienced mild side-effects, which were resolved shortly after reporting.

It is not unusual to experience mild side-effects after any vaccination. Serious allergic reactions are rare.