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Material Support Ships
ship,  a  refrigerator  ship,  and  an  aviation  supply ship. The AFS (fig. 19-21) is designed for high-speed replenishment    operations.    Built-in    materials- handling    equipment,    consisting    of    elevators, vertical  tray  lift  conveyors,  and  pallet  conveyors, provide  for  the  rapid  breakout  of  cargo.  Forklift trucks  and  pallet  trucks  are  used  for  horizontal movement of cargo to the replenishment stations. In  addition  to  the  conventional  replenishment rigging, constant-tension highline transfer systems   are   available   to   all   transfer   stations. Large   free-deck   areas   provide   space   for   pre- positioning  loads  destined  for  receiving  ships.  A helicopter platform and hangar for launching and servicing  two   helicopters   add   the   capability   of vertical replenishment. FAST  COMBAT  SUPPORT  SHIPS.  —Fast combat  support  ships  (AOEs)  are  the  largest  and most powerful auxiliary ships in the Navy. Unlike other replenishment ships, the AOE is designed to operate as an integral force, rather than as a unit of an underway replenishment group. The AOE (fig. 19-22) is a multiple-product ship that can transfer missiles, conventional ammunition,  fuel,  and  general  and  refrigerated cargo to other ships at sea. The   AOE   combines   in   one   large   ship   the functions of three major service force ships—oiler, ammunition ship, and combat store ship. The deck layout and cargo-handling equipment of  the  AOE allow it to service the smallest patrol craft or the largest carrier. The  design  of  the  AOE  includes  a  helicopter flight deck capable of supporting three Sea Knight helicopters. The use of helicopters in replenishing has several advantages. It enables the transfer of provisions  faster  than  a  receiving  ship  can  stow them away. It  also  enables  the  transfer  of  highly perishable    commodities    without    the    risk    of defrosting   or   spoilage.   In   addition   it   makes possible  the  replenishment  of  a  ship  that  may  be 40 or 50 miles away. The AOE is larger than other UNREP ships. It has  15  replenishment  stations,  each  capable  of transferring a load of cargo to a ship alongside 134.199 Figure 19-21.-USS San Jose (AFS-7). 19-20

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