Author Topic: Military studying seabound transfers  (Read 1850 times)

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Military studying seabound transfers
« on: January 14, 2007, 08:16:27 »
Military studying seabound transfers
By CHRIS LAMBIE Staff Reporter

Defence scientists are spending $300,000 trying to figure out how to move larger loads from one warship to another in heavier seas. The navy now transfersspare parts, food, fuel and ammunition from supply ships to its frigates using a cable slung between the two vessels."It's something like a ski gondolaaffair,"said Kevin McTaggart, an engineer with Defence Research and Development Canada. "So the goods are transferred on a pulley from the supply ship to the receiving ship."But the navy wants to triple its standard payload limit of two tonnes. "The other thing that we would like to be able to do is increase the sea conditions in which we're able to do this," Mr. McTaggart said."Currently, we're limited to wave heights below three metres."The navy is hoping to be able to move goods, including items as large as a forklift or a helicopter engine, between ships in waves as high as seven metres.There's not a lot of room for error when warships do replenishments at sea, often while steaming along at more than 20 kilometres an hour.The navy is looking at making the changes for its new joint support ships. The military announced last summer it intends to spend $2.1 billion building the three 28,000-tonne vessels to replace a pair of supply ships launched in 1968 and 1970. The first new ship is to be delivered in 2012."As far as increasing the payload goes, a lot of it is just coming up with more robust equipment to do it," Mr. McTaggart said.That means using heavier wires and strengthening the replenishment gear on either ship to deal with greater tension loads."As far as the wave heights go, it's really trying to come up with a better understanding about how the ships behave in rougher conditions. And our goal is to achieve that better understanding through simulation."Mr. McTaggart's agency is spending $200,000 on an outside contractor that will use computer models to figure out the problem.
"When your draught exceeds your depth, you are most assuredly aground"

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