Designs for a family of replenishment ships capable of supporting warships on rapid response missions are being displayed by Rolls-Royce at the Pacific 2008 exhibition in Sydney.
The family of underway replenishment ships is based on existing Rolls-Royce commercial designs, which means the company is able to meet conflicting pressures of capability, requirement and cost.
The Rolls-Royce designs, which range from 9,000 - 2,5000dwt and are designed for speeds of 18-27 knots, offer a cost-effective alternative to taking ships up from trade or building bespoke naval design ships.
Rolls-Royce has gained a great deal of ship design experience over the past 30 years with over 750 ships delivered, from offshore support vessels to high speed ferries. The ships feature a full range of Rolls-Royce propulsion and motion control equipment.
David Bricknell, Rolls-Royce Systems and Product Strategy Director - Naval, said: “Our solution is to take a commercial ship hull design that is then adapted and “navalised at the design phase”. This approach enables a navy to adopt a commercial ship with a basic level of replenishment capability but incorporates spaces where additional capability can be added.
“The ships can be incrementally upgraded to allow governments to plan spending based on known costs for packages. It also allows those spending plans to be changed at any point in the life the ship if higher priorities are found or greater capability is needed quickly.”
The Rolls-Royce family of replenishment ships is based on commercially-proven hullforms for fast Ro-Ro ferries. This offers better efficiency at speed than a conventional tanker and better course-keeping to ensure accurate station-keeping for replenishment operations.
Baseline hullforms in the designs are from the company's Ro-Pax range, while experience of oil handling is based on its product tanker designs and experience with refuelling and replenishment at sea systems and equipment.
Rolls-Royce is focusing its commercial design expertise on four key markets - Coastal Protection (Exclusive Economic Zone) vessels, Fast Naval Logistics, Survey and Research vessels and underway replenishment (UnRep) ships.