Wave-class tanker

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Wave class
The Portsmouth based Type 23 Frigate, HMS Iron Duke carrying out Replenishment at Sea (RAS) with RFA Wave Ruler, whilst carrying out the duties of the Atlantic Patrol Task (North) ATP (N). MOD 45146495.jpg
RFA Wave Ruler (left) carrying out a replenishment at sea with the frigate HMS Iron Duke in 2006
Class overview
Name: Wave class
Builders: VSEL (later BAE Systems Marine)
Operators: British-Royal-Fleet-Auxiliary-Ensign.svg Royal Fleet Auxiliary
Preceded by: Olclass
Succeeded by: Tideclass
In commission: 8 April 2003–present
Completed: 2
Active: 2
General characteristics [1] [2] [3]
Type: Fast fleet tanker
Displacement: 31,500 tonnes approx
Length: 196.5 m (644 ft 8 in)
Beam: 28.25 m (92 ft 8 in)
Draft: 9.97 m (32 ft 9 in)
Propulsion:
  • Diesel-electric:
  • 4 × Wartsila 12V 32E/GECLM diesel generators 25,514 metric horsepower (18.76 MW)
  • 2 × GEC Alstom motors with Cegelec variable speed converters 19,040 metric horsepower (14 MW)
  • 1 × shaft
  • 18t thrust electric Kamewa bow thruster and 12t thrust electric stern thruster, both powered by Cegelec variable speed drives and motors
Speed: 20 knots (37 km/h)
Range: 10,000 nautical miles (20,000 km) at 15 knots (28 km/h)
Capacity:
  • 16,000 m3 of liquids (of which 3,000 m3 aviation fuel & 380 m3 fresh water)
  • 125 tonnes of lubricating oil
  • 500 m3 of solids
  • 150 tonnes of fresh food in eight 20 ft refrigerated container units.
Complement: 80 Royal Fleet Auxiliary personnel with provision for 22 Royal Navy personnel for helicopter and weapons systems operations
Sensors and
processing systems:
  • Surface search: E/F band
  • Navigation: KH 1077, I-band
  • Kelvin Hughes Ltd SharpEye navigation radar [4]
  • IFF: Type 1017
Armament:
Aircraft carried: 1 × Merlin helicopter with full hangar facilities

The Wave-class tankers are a class of fast fleet tankers in service with the Royal Fleet Auxiliary. The class is tasked with providing fuel, food, fresh water, ammunition and other supplies to Royal Navy vessels around the world. There are two ships in the class, RFA Wave Knight and RFA Wave Ruler. The ships were ordered to replace the aging Ol-classtankers RFA Olna and RFA Olwen. [3] The two vessels have seen service in a number of locations, including anti-drug and hurricane relief operations in the Caribbean Sea, [5] [6] [7] anti-piracy activities around the Horn of Africa [8] [9] and deterrent patrols in the South Atlantic. [10] [11]

Replenishment oiler naval auxiliary ship with fuel tanks and dry cargo holds

A replenishment oiler or replenishment tanker is a naval auxiliary ship with fuel tanks and dry cargo holds which can supply both fuel and dry stores during underway replenishment (UNREP) at sea. Many countries have used replenishment oilers.

Royal Fleet Auxiliary Navel auxiliary fleet which supports the Royal Navy

The Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA) is a naval auxiliary fleet owned by the United Kingdom's Ministry of Defence and is one of the five fighting arms of the Royal Navy. Its purpose is to support the Royal Navy to maintain operations around the world. Its primary role is to supply the Royal Navy with fuel, ammunition and supplies, normally by replenishment at sea (RAS). It also transports Army and Royal Marine personnel, as well as supporting training exercises, and engaging in anti-piracy, anti-drug smuggling, and humanitarian operations.

Royal Navy Maritime warfare branch of the United Kingdoms military

The Royal Navy (RN) is the United Kingdom's naval warfare force. Although warships were used by the English kings from the early medieval period, the first major maritime engagements were fought in the Hundred Years' War against the Kingdom of France. The modern Royal Navy traces its origins to the early 16th century; the oldest of the UK's armed services, it is known as the Senior Service.

Contents

History

A contract was placed for the vessels in 1997 with Vickers Shipbuilding and Engineering Ltd (Marconi Marine VSEL). Construction of Wave Knight began in 1998 at VSEL's Barrow-in-Furness yard and the ship was launched in 2000. [1] With the acquisition of Marconi Electronic Systems and its Marconi Marine subsidiary in 1999 British Aerospace became BAE Systems. BAE now owns VSEL in Barrow and the Yarrow and Govan shipyards on the Clyde. BAE transferred the construction of Wave Ruler to Govan in 2000 and the vessel was launched in 2001. Both vessels were commissioned in 2003.

Barrow-in-Furness town and seaport in the county of Cumbria, England

Barrow-in-Furness, commonly known as Barrow, is a town and borough in Cumbria, England. Historically part of Lancashire, it was incorporated as a municipal borough in 1867 and merged with Dalton-in-Furness Urban District in 1974 to form the Borough of Barrow-in-Furness. At the tip of the Furness peninsula, close to the Lake District, it is bordered by Morecambe Bay, the Duddon Estuary and the Irish Sea. In 2011, Barrow's population was 57,000, making it the second largest urban area in Cumbria after Carlisle, although it is geographically closer to the whole of Lancashire and most of Merseyside. Natives of Barrow, as well as the local dialect, are known as Barrovian.

Marconi Electronic Systems (MES), or GEC-Marconi as it was until 1998, was the defence arm of The General Electric Company (GEC). It was demerged from GEC and acquired by British Aerospace (BAe) on 30 November 1999 to form BAE Systems. GEC then renamed itself Marconi plc.

British Aerospace Aerospace and defense company

British Aerospace plc (BAe) was a British aircraft, munitions and defence-systems manufacturer. Its head office was at Warwick House in the Farnborough Aerospace Centre in Farnborough, Hampshire. Formed in 1977, in 1999 it purchased Marconi Electronic Systems, the defence electronics and naval shipbuilding subsidiary of the General Electric Company plc, to form BAE Systems.

Design

The ships have the capability to supply fuel and other liquid cargo to vessels using replenishment rigs on port and starboard beams and through a Hudson reel-type stern rig. When providing support for amphibious operations, the ships are also able to deliver fuel to dracones positioned alongside. The equipment load includes cranes (for stores handling and abeam replenishment), steering and rudder gear, thyristor-controlled winch/windlasses and double drum mooring winches. Up to 16,000 m3 (570,000 cu ft) of liquids and 500 m3 (18,000 cu ft) of general solids can be carried. In addition, reverse-osmosis equipment is fitted enabling the production of 100 m3 (3,500 cu ft) of drinkable water per day. [3]

Underway replenishment Method of transferring fuel, munitions, and stores from one ship to another while under way

Replenishment at sea (RAS) or underway replenishment (UNREP) is a method of transferring fuel, munitions, and stores from one ship to another while under way. First developed in the early 20th century it was used extensively by the United States Navy as a logistics support technique in the Pacific theatre of World War II, permitting US carrier task forces to remain at sea indefinitely.

A Dracone Barge is a large flexible watertight tube intended to carry a liquid cargo while towed mostly-submerged behind a ship. One large current example of the type has a capacity of 935 cubic metres while weighing only 6.5 tonnes empty.

The vessels were designed with double hulls to prevent or reduce environmental pollution from oil spills if damage is sustained to the outer hull. [2]

A double hull is a ship hull design and construction method where the bottom and sides of the ship have two complete layers of watertight hull surface: one outer layer forming the normal hull of the ship, and a second inner hull which is some distance inboard, typically by a few feet, which forms a redundant barrier to seawater in case the outer hull is damaged and leaks.

The ships can operate a Merlin HM1 helicopter, or other helicopters of similar size, from a hangar and flight deck at the stern. On deployments to Atlantic Patrol Task (N) they have typically embarked a Royal Navy Lynx or a United States Coast Guard helicopter.

Westland Lynx Military helicopter family

The Westland Lynx is a British multi-purpose twin-engined military helicopter designed and built by Westland Helicopters at its factory in Yeovil. Originally intended as a utility craft for both civil and naval usage, military interest led to the development of both battlefield and naval variants. The Lynx went into operational usage in 1977 and was later adopted by the armed forces of over a dozen nations, primarily serving in the battlefield utility, anti-armour, search and rescue and anti-submarine warfare roles.

United States Coast Guard Coastal defense, search & rescue, and law enforcement branch of the United States Armed Forces

The United States Coast Guard (USCG) is the coastal defense, search & rescue, and maritime law enforcement branch of the United States Armed Forces and one of the country's seven uniformed services. The Coast Guard is a maritime, military, multi-mission service unique among the U.S. military branches for having a maritime law enforcement mission and a federal regulatory agency mission as part of its mission set. It operates under the U.S. Department of Homeland Security during peacetime, and can be transferred to the U.S. Department of the Navy by the U.S. President at any time, or by the U.S. Congress during times of war. This has happened twice: in 1917, during World War I, and in 1941, during World War II.

The vessels have a standard crew of 80 Royal Fleet Auxiliary personnel with provision for a further 22 Royal Navy personnel to conduct helicopter and weapons systems operations. [3] They carry a full medical team and sick bay and are capable of distributing 2,000 emergency relief packages in times of crisis. [12]

Construction programme

NamePennantBuilderOrderedLaid downLaunchedIn Service
Wave Knight A389 VSEL (later BAE Systems), Barrow-in-Furness [1] 12 March 1997 [1] 22 October 1998 [1] 29 September 2000 [1] 8 April 2003 [1]
Wave Ruler A390 BAE Systems, Govan [1] 12 March 1997 [1] 10 February 2000 [1] 9 February 2001 [1] 27 April 2003 [1]

Future

In June 2018 it was reported by the Brazilian press that the UK MoD had offered to sell one or both of the Wave-class tankers to Brazil. [13] As early as 2010, BAE Systems had proposed providing Brazil with a variant of the Wave-class, tailored to meet the specific aviation, stores and personnel requirements of the Brazilian Navy. [14]

Related Research Articles

This is a list of the naval forces from the United Kingdom that took part in the Falklands War. For a list of naval forces from Argentina, see Argentine naval forces in the Falklands War.

RFA <i>Fort Victoria</i> (A387) Fort-class combined fleet stores ship and tanker

RFA Fort Victoria is a Fort-class combined fleet stores ship and tanker of the Royal Fleet Auxiliary of the United Kingdom tasked with providing ammunition, fuel, food and other supplies to Royal Navy vessels around the world.

RFA <i>Black Rover</i> (A273)

RFA Black Rover was a Rover-class small fleet tanker of the British Royal Fleet Auxiliary. She was designed to replenish ships underway at sea with fuel, fresh water, and stores in all weather conditions. She had a helicopter deck served by a stores lift and was capable of conducting helicopter replenishment. Displacing 11,500 tonnes, she was powered by twin diesels and has a ship's company of 56.

RFA <i>Olna</i> (A123)

RFA Olna (A123) was the third and final of the three Ol-class "fast fleet tanker" of the Royal Fleet Auxiliary. Olna saw service in the Falklands War.

RFA <i>Olmeda</i> (A124)

RFA Olmeda (A124) was an Ol-class "fast fleet tanker" of the Royal Fleet Auxiliary. The ship was renamed from Oleander after two years in operation.

RFA Green Rover (A268) was a Rover-class fleet support tanker of the Royal Fleet Auxiliary, built by Swan Hunter Shipbuilders on the River Tyne, UK and completed in 1969. After decommissioning in 1992 she was sold to the Indonesian Navy and renamed KRI Arun (903)

Her Majestys Naval Service United Kingdoms naval warfare and maritime service

Her Majesty's Naval Service, also known as the Senior Service, is the United Kingdom's naval warfare and maritime service. It consists of the Royal Navy, Royal Marines, Royal Fleet Auxiliary, Royal Naval Reserve, Royal Marines Reserve and Naval Careers Service. The term Naval Service should be distinguished from the "UK Naval Services", which consist of the Naval Service and the Merchant Navy. The Naval Service as a whole falls under the command of the Navy Board, which is headed by the First Sea Lord. This position is currently held by Admiral Sir Phillip Jones. The Defence Council delegates administration of the Naval Service to the Admiralty Board, chaired by the Secretary of State for Defence.

Leaf-class tanker

The Leaf class is a class of support tanker of the British Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA). The class is somewhat unusual as it is an amalgam of various civilian tankers chartered for naval auxiliary use and as such there have been many different designs of ship in this particular class. Leaf names are traditional tanker names in the RFA, and are recycled when charters end and new vessels are acquired. Thus, there have been multiple uses of the same names, confusingly sometimes sharing a common pennant number.

Rover-class tanker

The Rover class is a British ship class of "Small Fleet Tanker", active from 1970 to 2017 with the Royal Fleet Auxiliary. Two remain in service, one having been sold to Portugal and one to Indonesia; the rest have been scrapped or are awaiting disposal. They are tasked with the replenishment at sea (RAS) of naval warships with fuel oils and with limited supplies of other naval stores. For RAS tasking, they can refuel a vessel on either beam and a third trailing astern and have a large flight deck to allow vertical replenishment (VERTREP) with helicopters.

RFA <i>Wave Ruler</i> (A390) Wave-class fast fleet tanker

RFA Wave Ruler is a Wave-class tanker fast fleet tanker of the Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA) of the United Kingdom tasked with providing fuel, food, fresh water, ammunition and other supplies to Royal Navy vessels around the world.

RFA <i>Wave Knight</i> (A389)

RFA Wave Knight is a Wave-class fast fleet tanker of the Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA) of the United Kingdom tasked with providing fuel, food, fresh water, ammunition and other supplies to Royal Navy vessels around the world.

Wave-class oiler

The Wave class was a class of replenishment oilers built for service supporting the Royal Navy during the later years of the Second World War. They were subsequently transferred to the Royal Fleet Auxiliary after the end of the war, and went on to support British and allied fleet units in Cold War conflicts such as the Korean War.

Dale-class oiler

The Dale class were a class of replenishment oilers taken up for service with the Royal Fleet Auxiliary, supporting the Royal Navy during the inter-war period. They went on to see action during the Second World War and supported British and allied fleet units in Cold War conflicts such as the Korean War.

Ol-class tanker (1965)

The Ol-class tankers were Royal Fleet Auxiliary "fast fleet tankers" tasked with providing fuel, food, fresh water, ammunition and other supplies to Royal Navy vessels around the world.

<i>Ol</i>-class tanker (1918)

The Ol-class tankers were Royal Fleet Auxiliary Replenishment oilers built from 1917-1919 tasked with providing fuel and other supplies to Royal Navy vessels around the world. There were six ships in the class. Until 1936 they were managed by Davies and Newman with RFA crews, after which time they were transferred to the Admiralty.

The Eddy-class coastal tankers were Royal Fleet Auxiliary Replenishment oilers built from 1951–1953 tasked with transporting and providing fuel and other liquids to Royal Navy vessels and stations around the world. There were originally ten ships planned in the class, although the final two were cancelled in 1952. Originally designed to act as fleet attendant oilers, in this role the ships were obsolete almost as soon as they were built due to the increasing prevalence of replenishment at sea, and their role was refocused to coastal transport duties.

Tide-class tanker class of four fast fleet tankers

The Tide-class tanker is a class of four fast fleet tankers that entered service with the British Royal Fleet Auxiliary from 2017. The 37,000 t ships provide fuel, food, fresh water, ammunition and other supplies to Royal Navy vessels around the world. Norway ordered a 26,000 t version with a 48-bed hospital and greater solid stores capacity, it was delivered in November 2018 as HNoMS Maud two years after originally planned.

RFA <i>Tidespring</i> (A136) Tide-class replenishment tanker of the British Royal Fleet Auxiliary

RFA Tidespring is a Tide-class replenishment tanker of the British Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA). Ordered from DSME in 2012, the ship was accepted by the Ministry of Defence in 2017, approximately 18 months behind schedule.

References

  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 Jane's Fighting Ships, 2004–2005. Jane's Information Group Limited. p. 817. ISBN   0-7106-2623-1.
  2. 1 2 Wave Class Fast Fleet Tankers at the Royal Navy homepage Archived 28 July 2010 at the Wayback Machine
  3. 1 2 3 4 "Wave Class Royal Fleet Auxiliary, United Kingdom". naval-technology.com. Retrieved 30 January 2016.
  4. "New navigation radar system for Royal Navy". Government of the United Kingdom. 28 January 2016. Retrieved 30 January 2016.
  5. "Navy ships help after hurricane". BBC News . 31 August 2008.
  6. "5am update: Storm causes damage, slams Sister Islands". Cayman Compass. 8 November 2008. Archived from the original on 12 November 2008. Retrieved 8 November 2008.
  7. "Cuba welcomes RN anti-drug ship". BBC News. 5 October 2008. Retrieved 30 January 2016.
  8. "Sailors Help Foil Pirate Attacks". Western Morning News . 21 April 2009. Retrieved 10 August 2015.[ permanent dead link ]
  9. "RFA Wave Knight Disrupts Pirate Attacks". Royal Navy. Archived from the original on 1 October 2010. Retrieved 30 January 2016.
  10. "Gordon Brown says UK is prepared in Falkland Islands". BBC News. 18 February 2010. Retrieved 30 January 2016.
  11. Archived 15 March 2012 at the Wayback Machine
  12. [ dead link ]
  13. http://www.naval.com.br/blog/2018/06/01/exclusivo-ingleses-sondam-interesse-da-mb-em-um-navio-tanque-classe-wave/
  14. http://www.defense-aerospace.com/article-view/release/119452/bae-offers-brazil-11_warship-package-with-tech-transfer%2C-partnership.html