HMAS Supply, one of the Royal Australian Navy’s two new auxiliary oiler replenishment (AOR) ships, has completed its first ever replenishment at sea (RAS) with HMAS Anzac.
CAPTION: HMAS Supply conducts her first replenishment at sea with HMAS Anzac, while sailing in the East Australia Exercise Area. Story by Acting Sub Lieutenant Jack Meadows. Photo by Able Seaman Jarryd Capper.
This first RAS marks a significant milestone for Navy’s refuel and resupply at sea capability, which is critical to extending time at sea for Australian and allied ships.
Supply’s first RAS took place off Australia’s east coast and involved the transfer of diesel fuel to Anzac.
Commanding Officer Supply Captain Ben Hissink said the successful RAS was a strong indicator of the AOR’s versatility and criticality.
“Navy’s new AORs are exceptionally versatile and a valuable generational shift from previous logistics ships,” Captain Hissink said.
“They can carry larger volumes of fuel, operate in a wider range of sea states and environmental conditions, support smaller ships and are now equipped with a combat management system that enhances their interoperability with Australian and allied assets.
“The success of our first RAS means we are one step closer completing our operational test and evaluation period and being out on the seas delivering a critical enabling capability.”
Supply commissioned in April 2021 and with the support of Sea Training Group has been progressing through her operational test and evaluation period to certify her readiness to join the fleet.
So far, the ship has completed combat survivability training, man overboard exercises, boarding party training, gunnery and warfare training and been rocked through a sea state six and executed a Heavy Jackstay trial – the first completed in the RAN since HMAS Success’s last Heavy Jackstay in 2018.
Executive Officer Supply Lieutenant Commander Peter Dargan said the ship’s successful first RAS and testing period prior, was largely attributable to her highly trained crew.
“The journey in getting to this stage of operational readiness has been long and challenging, but our crew has continually stepped up to the task,” Lieutenant Commander Dargan said.
“Our sailors and officers have received and been part of developing some of the most comprehensive training in the world, and their application during the RAS was evidence of their hard work.
“It is always rewarding to witness the result of perseverance, but the completion of our first RAS is particularly satisfying, seeing cutting-edge capability matched with highly qualified crew.”
Successful completion of the RAS means Supply is well on the way to achieving initial operating capability.