donald_of_tokyo wrote:...how less the Bulwark can be manned without C&C and reduced damage control, is not clear. I guess, 150 at minimum as a core-crew (only ship handling) ? A ship designed with large manpower cannot be lean manned easily. Even the basic choice of design differs (Bay has a propulsion kit with less maintenance, but also with less shock resistivity, compared to Albions).
Firstly, I am not proposing any reduction of damage control standards. I don't think RN would accept it.
As for the core crew number, we are all guessing but if it can be reduced down to a T23 level I think the option is worth exploring.
donald_of_tokyo wrote:Secondly, APT-N/S is really so much needed?
- RN has been gapping APT-S for long. Do we really need it?
- Also, there are many assets which can be used for APT-N.
-- 2 RFA Waves are lacking peace time jobs (also their crew?),
-- River B2 is mentioned sometimes to be deployed for APT-N
-- in addition to a Bay allocated there now.
APT(N) and APT(S) are only two examples, there are many other possibilities. Others options could involve joint deployments with USN/USMC, RAN or the Dutch Marines etc. A wider NATO C&C role could be established with everything over and above the core crew provided by NATO. Flexibility and adaptability would be key.
donald_of_tokyo wrote:So, if ever to re-activate the 2nd Albion (Bulwark), I propose the "source" of manpower may come from:
- disbanding and selling the two Waves (80 crew to solve the RFA manpower, and 80 crew for Bulwark?)
- disbanding 2 Hunts and 2 Sandowns to be replaced with the Bulwark-revived, to provide ~70 crew for ship handling and ~90 crew for "4 sets of MCM drone systems".
Getting rid of the Waves would be a mistake but reorganising the MCMV's is worth looking at, especially if existing platforms can be used in a more efficient way.
donald_of_tokyo wrote:This will make Bulwark a "specialist MCM drone mother ship, which can be converted back into LPD if MCM need is less and landing need is high"
Why not? This level of flexibility could very well be the future with modular systems added and removed as and when necessary. It would have been good to see a bit more of this in the MDP, hopefully we will next time around.