New Zealand's new replenishment tanker arrives home

by Ridzwan Rahmat

Aotearoa
         has been designed with a wave-piercing bow, reducing resistance and lowering fuel burn. 
       (Hyundai Heavy Industries)

Aotearoa has been designed with a wave-piercing bow, reducing resistance and lowering fuel burn. (Hyundai Heavy Industries)

The Royal New Zealand Navy’s (RNZN’s) new replenishment tanker, which will be known as HMNZS Aotearoa (A 11) once it is commissioned, has arrived home.

The vessel sailed into Auckland Harbour on 26 June after a 15-day journey from Ulsan, South Korea. Aotearoa was built and launched by South Korean shipbuilder, Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI), in April 2019 to replace the now-decommissioned tanker HMNZS Endeavour .

The new tanker, which will be the largest vessel to be operated by the RNZN, has an overall length of 173.2 m, and an overall beam of 24.5 m, and is equipped with two NATO-compliant replenishment-at-sea (RAS) masts. The vessel can carry 8,000 tonnes of diesel fuel, 1,550 tonnes of aviation fuel, and 250 tonnes of fresh water.

Besides replenishing fuel and water, the replenishment tanker has also been equipped to store ammunition, victuals, and spare parts, and can carry out humanitarian assistance and disaster relief (HADR) operations.

The ship is also equipped with a hangar, and a flight deck that can accommodate rotor-wing aircraft such as the Kaman SH-2 Super Seasprite and the NHIndustries NH90 multirole medium helicopters.

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The Royal New Zealand Navy’s (RNZN’s) new replenishment tanker, which will be known as HMNZS Aotearo...

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