PHOTEX: USNS Patuxent (T-AO 201) and USS Leyte Gulf (CG 58) prepare for a replenishment-at-sea

131201-N-VC599-027 ATLANTIC OCEAN (Dec. 1, 2013) The Military Sealift Command fleet replenishment oiler USNS Patuxent (T-AO 201), left, and the guided-missile cruiser USS Leyte Gulf (CG 58) prepare for a replenishment-at-sea. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Justin Wolpert/Released)

USS Kearsarge (LHD 3) conducts UNREP with USNS Leroy Grumman (T-AO 195) in 6th Fleet AOR

131014-N-NB538-059 MEDITERRANEAN SEA (Oct. 14, 2013) The amphibious assault ship USS Kearsarge (LHD 3) conducts a replenishment-at-sea with the Military Sealift Command fleet replenishment oiler USNS Leroy Grumman (T-AO 195). Kearsarge is deployed as part of the Kearsarge Amphibious Ready Group supporting maritime security operations and theater security cooperation efforts in the U.S. 6th Fleet area of responsibility. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Sabrina Fine/Released)

VIDEO: Frigate (1973)

PHOTEX: Chinese navy to visit US, New Zealand, Australia

Soldiers of the North China Sea Fleet, one of three fleets of the People’s Liberation Army Navy, salute on the missile destroyer Qingdao before departure, in Qingdao, East China’s Shandong province, Aug 20, 2013. The ship, carrying nearly 700 soldiers and a helicopter, will visit the United States, New Zealand and Australia, along with escort ship Linyi and depot ship Hongzehu. The fleet will participate in two maritime drills in the US and Australia. (Photo/Xinhua)

Missile escort ship Linyi will visit the US, Australia, and New Zealand with missile destroyer Qingdao and supply ship Hongzehu, beginning on Aug 20, 2013. (Photo/Xinhua)

A shipboard helicopter in charge of patrol, maritime rescue and antisubmarine operation will take part in the visits following the North China Sea Fleet, Aug 20, 2013. (Photo/Xinhua)

Crew members of the shipboard helicopter, Aug 20, 2013. (Photo/Xinhua)

Soldiers on Linyi line up before departure for the US, Australia, and New Zealand. (Photo/Xinhua)

Soldiers on Qingdao salute before departure for the US, Australia, and New Zealand.(Photo/Xinhua)

Missile destroyer Qingdao parked in Qingdao city, Shandong province, Aug 20, 2013. (Photo/Xinhua)

Soldiers on Linyi salute before departure for the US, Australia, and New Zealand. (Photo/Xinhua)

Cruise of the Randolph (1954)

Naval History and Heritage Command, Photographic Section, UMO-18.

PHOTEX: USNS Guadalupe (T-AO 200), USS Lake Erie (CG 70), HMS Daring (D32)

PACIFIC OCEAN (July 18, 2013) Fleet replenishment oiler guilded missile cruiser USS Lake Erie (CG 70) and the Royal Navy’s type 45 guided missile destroyer HMS Daring (D32) sail behind guided missile destroyer USS Hopper (DDG 70) during a straights transit exercise while participating in an Independent Deployer Certification (IDCERT) exercise. The IDCERT exercise is designed to certify select U.S. ships as independent deployers as tasked by Commander, U.S. 3rd Fleet. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jon Dasbach/Released)

PHOTEX: HMAS Sirius conducts replenishment at sea with USS Bonhomme Richard

130718-N-VA915-124 CORAL SEA (July 18, 2013) The amphibious assault ship USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6) conducts a replenishment-at-sea with the Australian Navy replenishment tanker HMAS Sirius (O 266). Bonhomme Richard is the flagship for the Bonhomme Richard Amphibious Ready Group and is participating in the biennial exercise Talisman Saber 2013 in the U.S. 7th Fleet area of responsibility. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Jerome D. Johnson/Released)

Joint US-Australian combat logistics force supporting Talisman Saber 2013

This is a great story… except it would difficult to conduct a RAS with “light crusiers” HMAS Perth (D29) and HMAS Sydney (D48) because Perth was lost to Japanese torpedoes during the Battle of Sunda Strait in 1942 and Sydney was lost to a German raider in 1941.

Do you think it’s possible that the whoever compiled this MSC press release simply copied the wrong Perth & Sydney data from Wikipedia? No… that could never happen… could it? {groan}

The current HMAS Perth and HMAS Sydney are frigates.

Combat Logistics Force Ships underway for Talisman Saber exercise

Story Number: NNS130720-06Release Date: 7/20/2013 7:11:00 PM

CORAL SEA (NNS) — Navy Combat Logistics Force ships USNS Charles Drew (T-AKE 10), USNS Wally Schirra (T-AKE 8) and USNS Yukon (T-AO 202) are steaming off the coast of northeastern Australia this week, providing vital logistics support to U.S. and Australian ships participating in Talisman Saber 2013.

Thousands of U.S. and Australian military forces took to the air, land, and sea in and around northeastern Australia for the two-week exercise. Operating as a Combined Joint Task Force, Talisman Saber 2013 focuses on combined operations, as well as responding to humanitarian emergencies or natural disasters. The exercise includes both live and computer-simulated scenarios.

CLF ships are shadowing vessels from the USS George Washington Carrier Strike Group and USS Bonhomme Richard Amphibious Ready Group, which will conduct bilateral training with ships from the Royal Australian Navy.

USNS Charles Drew conducted its first underway replenishment operation with Australian fleet replenishment oiler HMAS Sirius (O-266) July 18. CLF ships are also scheduled to resupply Royal Australian Navy light cruisers HMAS Perth (D-29) and HMAS Sydney (D-48).

CLF ships’ role in the exercise will conclude July 29.

Personnel from Singapore based Military Sealift Command Far East’s logistics directorate work closely with counterparts from Australia’s navy throughout the exercise. MSCFE’s Combat Logistics Force officers – who operate a centralized, one-stop shop for Navy combat logistics force ships – manage the delivery of commodities to both U.S. Navy and Australian ships at sea.

Jointly sponsored by the U.S. Pacific Command and ADF headquarters Joint Operational Command, Talisman Saber 20l3 will incorporate U.S. Army, Navy, Marine Corps and Air Force, the ADF, as well as other government agencies from each country.

MSC operates approximately 110 noncombatant, U.S. Navy civilian-crewed ships that replenish U.S. Navy ships, conduct specialized missions, strategically preposition combat cargo at sea around the world, and move military cargo and supplies used by deployed U.S. forces and coalition partners.

PHOTEX: USNS Henry J. Kaiser (T-AO 187) conducts UNREP with USS Boxer (LHD-4)

130715-N-JP249-023 PACIFC OCEAN (July 15, 2013) Fleet replenishment oiler USNS Henry J. Kaiser (T-AO 187) conducts a replenishment at sea with the amphibious assault ship USS Boxer (LHD 4). Boxer is underway off the coast of Southern California conducting a Composite Training Unit Exercise (COMPTUEX). COMPTUEX is a scenario-driven exercise aimed at integrating the ships of the Boxer Amphibious Ready Group through a series of live training events. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communications Specialist 2nd Class Kenan O’Connor/Released)

Final design for Britain’s new Tide-class fleet tankers

Britain’s Royal Fleet Auxiliary should see its first Tide-class fleet replenishment oiler ready for handover in 2015, in time to support the Royal Navy‘s new Queen Elizabeth class aircraft carriers.

Incoming Tides – as designs for Navy’s new tankers are completed

Work will begin on the Navy’s next-generation tankers in a year’s time after design teams in the UK completed their plans for the four vessels.

RFA Tidespring, Tiderace, Tidesurge and Tideforce will provide the Fleet – including the giant future carriers – with fuel, water, spare parts and other supplies for a quarter of a century once they enter service from 2015.

As a Merlin hovers over its flight deck carrying a slung load, tanker RFA Tidespring pumps fuel into aviation training and casualty treatment ship RFA Argus. Picture: BMT Defence Services

This is the latest artist’s impression of the Navy’s next-generation tankers as the design for the quartet of new ships reaches its final stages.

In around 12 months’ time the first steel will be cut on Tidespring, the first of the new 37,000-tonne vessels which will provide fuel, water, stories and supplies to sustain the Fleet – and especially its new carriers – around the world.

The Queen Elizabeth battle group with an Astute-class submarine, two Type 45 destroyers, the carrier herself and one Tide-class tanker.

Hundreds of design drawings and plans have been drawn up by BMT Defence Services, working with the Royal Navy and Royal Fleet Auxiliary. Scale models have been built and tested in the gigantic water tank at Haslar in Gosport, where Tidespring ‘refuelled’ HMS Queen Elizabeth in various sea conditions.

With the designs for the £450m quartet – RFA Tidespring, Tiderace, Tidesurge and Tideforce – now complete, it’s down to Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering to draw up the detailed plans so they can begin construction next year.

The ships will carry 19,000 cubic metres – more than seven times the capacity of an Olympic-sized swimming pool – of fuel for a ship’s engines and aircraft.

Accurate replica models of Queen Elizabeth and Tidespring in the test tank at Haslar.

A new replenishment at sea rig has been built at HMS Raleigh in Torpoint to practise using both the new tankers and the ‘reception areas’ on the Queen Elizabeth-class carriers.

As well as both the tankers and the carriers being much bigger than their predecessors, the tankers should also be able to deliver their supplies up to two and a half times faster than the vessels which have gone before them.

“A Range Rover’s fuel tank connected to all four 7in hoses on the starboard size of a Tide tanker would be full in 0.12 seconds,” said naval architect Mark Lewis from the future tanker project.

“Unfortunately, the fuel would be passing through a standard petrol station’s nozzle at around Mach 2 – and completely destroy your vehicle.”

The Tides will be much more than mere floating filling stations. There’s space for eight ISO containers on the forecastle, holding anything from humanitarian aid to large stores or kit for special missions.

A Type 45 destroyer takes on fuel from a Tide-class tanker.

ypically the ships will have a crew of 63, including 17 officers and 12 senior ratings. But there is accommodation on board for another 45 souls, such as RFA sailors undergoing training, Royal Marines and the ship’s helicopter; the flight deck can take a Merlin if required.

All four ships will be built at Daewoo’s yard at Okpo-dong in south-east South Korea which produces 70 commercial and specialist ships – such as the South Korean Navy’s destroyers – every year.

From the first steel being cut to launch will take each ship around ten months. After undergoing sea trials off the Korean peninsula, the ships will be brought to Britain where they’ll undergo ‘customisation’ – fitting classified and UK-only systems on board to support their mission alongside the RN.

Tidespring is due to be handed over to the MOD in October 2015, with the final vessel, Tideforce, completed in April 2017. All are expected to serve at least a quarter of a century.