Replenishing At Sea
Back to Sea Ops

REPLENISHING AT SEA (RAS)

To remain operational for long periods at sea it was essential that HMS Ambuscade was able to replenish fuel, stores, ammunition and people whilst on the move. Some of the methods are shown below. The crew was drilled in an Emergency Breakaway procedure if it came under attack.



Light jackstay

Light Jackstay Avenger '83  Light Jackstay Avenger '83
Light Jackstay (Personnel) transfer with HMS Avenger 1983 photos © S Griffin



RAS-L (Liquids) QRC
Usually carried out with a Royal Fleet Auxiliary ship or other NATO supply ship. The Fuel probe had a Quick Release Coupling which speeded up the process.

RAS Animation
This diagram is used with the permission of TOOTP (Unofficial RFA Site)

RAS-L

QRC RAS Fuel photo © David Marchant 1979
click to enlarge RAS PROBE QRC

RAS-L (Liquids) Stern

The tanker trails the hose and a marker float astern which is picked up by the receiving ship. this method was usually used when refuelling from civilian tankers .
Stern RAS
Stern RAS (Fuel) in Med with British Esk 1983photo © S Griffin



RAS-S (Stores)

This was carried out using the Heavy Jackstay method. A Stump Mast was erected in the middle of the flight deck providing a high-point, the Rope (Jackstay) was tensioned and stores and ammunition was then transferred between the delivering and receiving ship.
            Click to enlarge                      Heavy Jackstay RAS
"Erecting the stump mast at sea could be a tricky and dangerous operation. I have personal experience when one of the two tackles on the hanger roof gave way during this operation and if it had not been pulled to one side by one of the heavy stays whilst falling, my two oppos and i who were pushing it up would not be here to tell the tale"
Steve griffin


RAS
Refuelling at Sea in heavy sea HMS Ambuscade RFA Olwen and HMS Alacrity 1979
photo supplied by Michael Gretton (Capt 1978-1980)

VERTREP (vertical Replenishment)
A quick method of replenishing light stores and mail was using helicoptors
Sea King Vertrep San Falklands war 1982  Wasp VertRep
photos ©Mark Haynes and Dave marchant

  top of page