She is a 3,600-tonne (3,500-long-ton) ship, 118 m (387 ft) in overall length, 4.8 m (49 ft) across the beam and had a draught of 4.35 m (14.3 ft) at full load. She is capable of a 27-knot (50 km/h; 31 mph) top speed, and a range of 6,000 nautical miles (11,000 km; 6,900 mi) at 18 knots (33 km/h; 21 mph). Her hull and superstructure are of all-steel construction, and the ships are fitted with fin stabilisers.
Sensors and Decoys:
Sonars : Thomson Sintra Spherion B Mod 5; hull-mounted; active search and attack; medium frequency, and with provision for a towed array.
Air search radar: Raytheon AN/SPS-49(V)8 ANZ (C/D-band)
Search radar: CEA Technologies CEAFAR Active Phased Array Radar (S Band)
Navigation: Kelvin Hughes Sharpeye (I-band) Passive Detection: Sagem Vampir NG Infrared Search/track
Target Illumination Radar: CEA Technologies CEAMOUNT Active Phased Array Illuminator (X Band)
Combat data systems: Saab 9LV 453 Mk 3E.Link 11& Link16
Weapons control: Saab 9LV 453 radar/optronic director with CEA Solid State Continuous Wave Illuminator
Electronic warfare and decoys: Racal modified Sceptre A (radar intercept), Telefunken PST-1720 Telegon 10 (comms intercept), G & D Aircraft SRBOC Mk 36 Mod 1 decoy launchers for SRBOC, BAE Systems Nulka active missile decoy.
Guns: 1 × 5 in/54 (127 mm) Mk 45 Mod 2 gun, 2 × Rafael Mini Typhoon 12.7mm (.50 cal) CIWS, small arms,
Missiles: 2 × 4 Harpoon Block II anti-ship missiles, Mk 41 Mod 5 VLS for Sea Sparrow and Evolved Sea Sparrow
Torpedoes: 2 × triple 324 mm Mk 32 Mod 5 tubes with MU 90 Torpedo
Aircraft carried:1 × SH-60 Seahawk
Parramatta and HMAS Newcastle were the first RAN ships to be fitted with two M2HB .50 calibre machine guns in Mini Typhoon mounts; now a standard theatre fit for all RAN frigates deployed to the Persian Gulf.
In 2005, Parramatta was sent for six months service in the Persian Gulf as part of Operation Catalyst, returning to Sydney on 13 April 2006. During the deployment period, her crew carried out 186 vessel boardings and security patrols, and were involved in training other vessels in the Iraq Coalition. Parramatta was awarded the Meritorious Unit Citation in 2007 for her efforts and conduct during this deployment.
In December 2011, while deployed to the Middle East, Parramatta provided fuel and food to an Iranian dhow that was adrift off Yemen.
In October 2013, Parramatta participated in the International Fleet Review 2013 in Sydney.
In November 2014, Parramatta and sister ship Stuart were deployed to shadow a Russian naval force operating in international waters off Australia during the 2014 G-20 Brisbane summit. The Russian deployment was believed to be in response to troubled recent relationships between the two nations.
PParramatta was docked in March 2015 to undergo the Anti-Ship Missile Defence (ASMD) upgrade. The upgrade included the fitting of CEA Technologies' CEAFAR and CEAMOUNT phased array radars on new masts, a Vampir NG Infrared Search and Track system, and Sharpeye Navigational Radar Systems, along with improvements to the operations room equipment and layout. The upgrade was completed in April 2016 and she will rejoin the fleet in July.