Gittins, R.P. and Williams, T.M.
Extending endurance with Ras: mix, tactics and design trade-offs
In Warship 92: Affordable Warships - Extending and Enhancing Maritime Capabilities. Proceedings.
Royal Institution of Naval Architects..
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Increased sustainability of warships by Replenishment at Sea (RAS) is a vital factor in naval operations: firstly because it helps to avoid compromising the effectiveness and survivability of the warships by considerations of sustainability, and secondly because it provides economic advantage in holding stores centrally and replenishing the expenditure of surviving warships. The experience of the Falklands clearly demonstrated the importance of RAS. The question of how support should be provided has been exacerbated by several factors. Modern warships tend to be small and more efficient , and so more sustainable: frigates with long-range sensors, such as the T23 ((Duke class)), operate at large distances from supporting task-groups; and the new AOR combines both solid and liquid replenishment with helicopter maintenance facilities: the very high reliability and cost of modern equipment making it uneconomic and unnecessary to provide every ship with every spare. This paper will describe work carried out for MOD by YARD (now a BA""SEMA company), addressing the strategic questions of: how much support to provide, how this should be provided between AORs and traditional support ships, and what implications there are for AOR and warship design and for warship group tactics and speed. Who, what, when, why and how will be considered. Modelling will be described. Finally, methods for the assessment of design trade-offs will be considered, for example the relative benefits of extra speed from an AOR compared to extra fuel-capacity in a T23.
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