Multi-Mission Support Ship For $400 Million


MSC Adds A New Multi-Mission Support Ship In its MSC T-AKE ship Fleet.


The MSC T-AKE ship fleet consists of 14 ships.  This support ship is designed to provide flexible, blue water support in any Ocean of the world to the fleet with significant cargo space.  The system includes ammunition support, elevators to enable the crew to move cargo to the delivery and to the  point of support.  Using the modern logistical IT methods it can also find the cargo in its location aboard a ship with significant cargo space.  This vessel is multi mission as it can perform diverse activities far beyond simple fleet replenishment.

The total displacement of the ship is 41,000 tons; the dry cargo capacity is 6,675t; there are two cargo potable water tanks with a capacity of 200t or 52,800gals.

The ship can also provide fuel and is used regularly to do so as a complement to the MSC tanker fleet.

Highlights of T-Ake ship:

  • The vessel carries 121 civil service mariners and military onboard.
  • One of its major task was providing fuel during the transit as it is the only oiler in support of Joint Warrior
  • It has two fuel receivers.
  • The vessel supports the Portuguese Navy, the Dutch Navy, the German Navy and the Royal Navy.
  • The ship is capable of moving dry cargo at sea.

Capacities of T-AKE ship:

  • The dry cargo capacity is 6,675t.
  • There are two cargo potable water tanks with a capacity of 200t or 52,800gal.
  • The five cargo fuel tanks can carry 3,242t of fuel.
  • The ship is constructed with two multipurpose cargo holds for dry stores and ammunition, three specialty cargo and spares holds, and specialty cargo spaces on level 01.
  • A lightweight portable cargo dunnage system is used in the holds to protect the cargo from mechanical and water damage.  There is a dedicated cargo hold for frozen, chilled or dry stores.
  • The cargo holds are air conditioned.
  • There are also extensive cargo pre-staging areas on the main deck, four cranes each rated at 5t for loading and offloading pierside or at anchorage and eight cargo elevators for transferring the cargo between the main deck and the allocated stowage locations.
  • Each Lewis and Clark ship is capable of simultaneous operation of five connected replenishment (CONREP) stations and vertical replenishment (VERTREP) operation by aircraft, using the flight deck situated on the main deck.  There is a total of three dry-cargo and one liquid-cargo connected replenishment stations on each side of the ship.

Multi mission role:

  • Given the high demand on the tanker fleet, T-AKE ships can play a tanking role.
  • The Marines have used it as mini-amphibious support ship in the Pacific.
  • And with its helo deck has landed Ospreys and there is under consideration the possibility of modifying the two-hanger arrangement for helos to be modified for the Osprey itself.  For the distributed operational fleet, it makes sense to rely on the Osprey as a significant operational connector.
  • It can support either military helicopters for fleet replenishment at sea or commercial helicopters for other mission sets.

Highlighted events of USNS William McLean:

  1. The ship provided replenishment at sea to one of the amphibious ships involved in the rescue of Captain Phillips from the pirates that attacked his ship the Maersk Alabama.  The William McLean’s contribution to keeping Navy ships on station, roughly 7,000 miles from Norfolk, Va. during the Captain Phillips rescue operation, can be seen in the lifeboat on the deck of the USS Boxer.
  2. A sinking sailboat operating in open waters, not only saving the sailboat and its crew, but it also facilitated its repair at sea and the ability to return to shore.

Source: SLDInfo