donald_of_tokyo wrote: I really think MHC must adopt bulky hull. Large deck space, more flexibility to future MCM drones. I think we must omit "high speed" requirement, which will significantly degrade the effectiveness as MHC ship, by requiring more slender hull. I think, 18 knot is max. Even 16 knots is doable.
I think it all depends on how this programme now proceeds. The crucial question appears to be, is the patrol capability still a major requirement or not? The perceived wisdom is that the RB2's are effectively the patrol element and we now have an MHC programme rather than a MHPC programme. This may be true but could this be effected by Brexit? Will at least 4 of the RB2's now be required to police the EEZ? Personally I think the minimum number required will be more like 6, hence the retained RB1's. A lot depends on the Brexit deal so time will tell.
If we proceed on the basis that it is now an MHC programme are we effectively just replacing the Echo Class with a similar sized vessel with a more modern configuration?
Here's the baseline,
Top Speed: 15 knots
And the heir apparent,
Dimensions to be confirmed but broadly similar to the Echo Class. Is Venari just a modernised Echo with a flight deck and garage added? The similarities are striking.
BMT tell us that Venari is available from 70m to 100m which provides plenty of options.
Another 90m vessel with 16.7m beam possibly worthy of consideration is the Kership LSPV90. http://www.navyrecognition.com/index.ph ... pv-90.html
At first glance it's hard to believe this vessel has virtually identical dimensions as an Echo and is the same length as an RB2.
Clearly the superstructure has been supersized to provide maximum accommodation but such high capacity in an OPV sized vessel is impressive.
The stern ramp is probably completely unnecessary on an MHC vessel but the side loading ramp might be a useful addition to Venari.
There are lots of things about this design that I don't like but equally I think there a number of things that this vessel does better than Venari. Overall for an OPV sized vessel the Kership LSPV90 is an impressive design especially when compared to something like an RB2.
Damen also have some interesting options that are a bit more conventional than the Kership.
The Damen MRAV 3600 has length of 85m, a 16m beam and a top speed of 16knots.
So lots of possible options for the MHC programme and it's interesting that all of these vessels are configured in a broadly similar way. If adopted Venari type vessels could become some of the most versatile assets that RN possess and this may be the reason the speed requirement rises above 16knots. Stretched out to 105m, a Wildcat embarked and a top speed of around 21/22 knots they could be very useful additions to the fleet.
Would vessels such as these actually be well suited to a wider patrol and HADR role?
Is it possible that outside of a conflict scenario they might just become a whole more useful that a basic Leander style T31?
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