KRI Bontang, one of Indonesian Navy’s three new Tarakan class, has completed its Replenishment at Sea (RAS) Exercise with corvette KRI Usman Harun. As part of the number of exercises performed, the crew of KRI Usman Harun engaged in Station Keeping by Distance Line (SKBDL) and Communication exercises took centre stage. Successful completion of the RAS means KRI Bontang is well on the way to achieving initial operating capability. This RAS marks a significant milestone for Navy’s refuel and resupply at sea capability, which is critical to extending time at sea for Indonesian Naval warships.
Replenishment at sea (RAS) (North Atlantic Treaty Organisation/Commonwealth of Nations) or underway replenishment (UNREP) (U.S. Navy) is a method of transferring fuel, munitions, and stores from one ship to another while under way. First developed in the early 20th century it was used extensively by the United States Navy as a logistics support technique in the Pacific theatre of World War II, permitting U.S. carrier task forces to remain at sea indefinitely.
KRI Bontang (907) is a type of ship Auxiliary Liquid Petroleum (BCM) was built by PT Batamec (BMC). KRI Bontang weighs about 2,400 tons and a length of 122 meters. This ship also can be driven up to speeds of 16 knots and has a helipad that can accommodate Bell-412 helicopter in its class. As a fuel ship, KRI Bontang able to carry 5,500 cubic meters of fuel, and able to make the provisions in the ocean known as the RAS method or Replenishment at Sea. After the inauguration, KRI Bontang Assistance Unit will join the Navy’s 1st Fleet Command (Komando Armada I). Its weapons systems for self-defense include 2x 20 mm canons and 2x 12.7mm machine guns.
KRI Usman Harun is a Bung Tomo-class corvette in service with the Indonesian Navy as of 2014. She was originally built for the Royal Brunei Navy and launched as KDB Bendahara Sakam in 2001. The Bung Tomo-class corvettes are three vessels built by BAE Systems Marine (now BAE Systems Maritime – Naval Ships). The contract was awarded to GEC-Marconi in 1995 and the ships, a variant of the F2000 design, were launched in January 2001, June 2001 and June 2002 at the then BAE Systems Marine yard at Scotstoun, Glasgow. Usman Harun is the third ship of the Bung Tomo class.