Replenishment oiler RFA Tiderace (A137)

Replenishment oiler RFA Tiderace (A137) 0Replenishment oiler RFA Tiderace (A137) 1Replenishment oiler RFA Tiderace (A137) 2Replenishment oiler RFA Tiderace (A137) 3

Classification

Basic information

Operator:
Country of build:
Laid down:
Launched:
Commissioned (service):
Status:
IMO number:
9655547

Ship measurements

Displacement:
37,000 t
Length:
200.9 m
Beam:
28.6 m
Draft:
10 m

Machine

Propulsion system:
Propulsion:
  • Combined diesel-electric or diesel
  • 2 * 7,500 kW Wärtsilä main engines
  • 2 * 3,170 kW Wärtsilä diesel generators
  • 2 * 1,000 kW Wärtsilä bow thrusters
Speed:
20 knots
Range:
18,200 nautical miles (33,700 km; 20,900 mi)

Personnel

Complement:
63
Embarked units:
46

Combat assets

Cargo capacity:
  • Tanks for diesel oil, aviation fuel (19,000 m³) and fresh water (1,400 m³)
  • Lubrication oil stored in drums
  • Stowage for up to eight 20 ft containers
Electronics:
  • Kelvin Hughes Integrated Bridge System
  • Servowatch IPMS System
  • 3 * SharpEye radar
Armament:
  • 2 * Phalanx CIWS (fitted for, depending on deployment)
  • 2 * 30 mm cannons (fitted for, depending on deployment)
  • 4 * MK44 Miniguns
  • 4 * General Purpose Machine Guns
Aircraft:
  • 1 * medium helicopter
  • Full hangar facilities (Merlin/Wildcat), flight deck capable of landing Chinook-size helicopter

RFA Tiderace represents a Tide-class replenishment oiler within the British Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA). Initially ordered from DSME in 2012, her official christening occurred on December 1, 2016, and she gained approval from the Ministry of Defence by June 2017. Tiderace commenced service on August 2, 2018.

Setting sail from her builders in August 2017, she headed for the United Kingdom, reaching A&P Falmouth in Cornwall by September 25, 2017, for final outfitting with sensitive military gear before undergoing UK sea trials and ultimately entering service in 2018.

As the second vessel of her class, Tiderace's order was placed on February 22, 2012. Similar to her companion ships, construction by DSME in South Korea was complemented by outfitting performed by A&P Group in Falmouth, England. The commencement of her construction began with steel cutting on December 8, 2014, followed by her laying down on June 8, 2015. A fire incident on an LPG carrier in the same drydock as Tiderace occurred on November 10, 2015, causing no damage to her but resulting in a delay of almost three weeks. Subsequently, she was launched on November 28, 2015, and officially named by her Lady Sponsor, Mrs. Anita Lister, wife of Royal Navy Vice Admiral Simon R Lister on December 1, 2016.

Builder's sea trials took place from January 13 to June 29, 2017. Upon completion, Tiderace embarked on her voyage from South Korea to the UK, traversing the Kanmon Straits of Japan, halting at United States naval bases in Yokosuka, Japan, and San Diego, United States, transiting the Panama Canal, and making a stopover in Curaçao. Arrival in Falmouth, England occurred on September 24, 2017, followed by drydock customization at A&P Falmouth, encompassing armor installation, self-defence weaponry integration, and communication system setup. Subsequently, a series of capability assessment trials commenced, involving replenishment at sea (RAS) trials and inaugural flying trials that included her first RAS with the Royal Navy frigate HMS Somerset and initial flying trials with a Merlin Mk2 helicopter from 814 Naval Air Squadron. She was formally integrated into the fleet on August 3, 2018, following a dedication service in Portland.

In April 2019, Tiderace partook in Exercise Joint Warrior, a sizeable NATO military drill held in Scotland. She joined a task force led by the Royal Navy's landing platform dock HMS Albion, in the company of the destroyer HMS Defender, frigate HMS Kent, landing ship dock RFA Lyme Bay, and 3 Commando Brigade, Royal Marines.

Commencing in January 2020, Tiderace underwent a refit and maintenance phase at the Cammell Laird shipyard in Birkenhead, England. Her comprehensive six-month refit involved significant alterations, including the replacement of all four engine/generator funnel exhausts and an upgrade to her high-pressure saltwater fire-main. After the refit, she made her inaugural call to Gibraltar.

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