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Water fuel lighters for the Navy

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WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 21, 1977. NO. 215/77


The Royal Australian Navy's most manoeuverable

vessel in a couple of years1 time will not be a sleek

destroyer or a fast patrol boat, but a squat, grey

lighter, which has been designed by the Navy's team of

designers at Canberra.

Called a self-propelled combined water fuel

lighter, the new craft will have swivelling propellers,

resembling outboard motors fitted at each end, which will

enable the craft to move ahead, astern or sideways and

to turn in its own length.

The steel hull is also unusual in that it is

self-supporting and requires no internal struts. This

makes it cheaper to build and easier to maintain.

Four of the lighters will be built at a cost

of about $7m. The first vessel is expected to be

delivered by Williamstown Naval Dockyard early in 1979.

The lighters, which will be 38 metres in

length and displace 1,100 tonnes, will be used to supply

Naval ships with fuel and fresh water when berths are not



Further Enquiries: Mr Noel Tanswell 65 2690 (office hours) 48 0476 (after hours)