26 June 2020
by Gabriel Dominguez
The Royal New Zealand Navy’s (RNZN’s) new fleet tanker/replenishment vessel sailed into Auckland Harbour on 26 June following a 15-day journey from the South Korean coastal city of Ulsan where it was built by Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI).
The 173.2 m-long auxiliary oiler replenishment (AOR) vessel, which will be known as HMNZS Aotearoa (A 11) once in service, was welcomed with a fly-past from the Royal New Zealand Air Force, and berthed at the Devonport Naval Base where it is expected to be formally commissioned in late July, replacing fleet replenishment tanker Endeavour, which was decommissioned in December 2017.
Aotearoa , the RNZN’s new fleet tanker/replenishment vessel, sailed into Auckland Harbour on 26 June following a 15-day journey from the South Korean coastal city of Ulsan. (RNZN)
The ship’s home port will be New Plymouth in New Zealand’s western region of Taranaki. Ordered for NZD493 million (USD317 million) in 2016 under the country’s Maritime Sustainment Capability (MSC) programme, the vessel, which has a displacement of 26,000 tonnes, was laid down in August 2018 and launched in April 2019.
Aotearoa, which is capable of carrying 30% more fuel than Endeavour, will be the largest vessel operated by the RNZN once commissioned. The vessel is able to carry 8,000 tonnes of diesel fuel, 1,550 tonnes of aviation fuel, and 250 tonnes of fresh water for resupply operations. It is also capable of carrying up to 14 standard 20 ft containers (or, double stacked, a maximum of 22), and producing 100 tonnes of fresh water each day, according to the RNZN.
The Royal New Zealand Navy’s (RNZN’s) new fleet tanker/replenishment vessel sailed into Auckland Har...