Surabaya, Indonesia- The Philippine Navy formally launched its first Strategic Sealift Vessel (SSV) in PT PAL Indonesia’s shipyard in Surabaya. Named the BRP Tarlac, the SSV will serve as the largest strategic vessel in the Philippines.
According to Navy Spokesperson Col. Edgardo Arevalo, the SSV is named after a city, similar to BRP-Dagupan (LCC-551) and BRP Bacolod City (LCC-550), which are both Logistics Support Vessels. This sets these vessels apart from frigates and other surface combatants under the Navy, as these are named after Filipino heroes and outstanding military personnel.
The BRP Tarlac is set to undergo sea trials and will be brought back to the shipyard for fine tuning. It is expected to arrive in the Philippines this coming May.
The country’s second SSV also went through a milestone ceremony around the same time as the launch of the BRP Tarlac, the Keel Laying Ceremony.
But what exactly is an SSV?
The BRP Tarlac Specification:
An SSV is a class of sealift vessels under the Philippine Navy, and is composed of four vessels that are intended to be the largest in the country. These ships are meant for amphibious operations and special transport duties in service to the Armed Forces of the Philippines, but can likewise be used for Humanitarian and Disaster Relief (HADR) and Search and Rescue (SAR) operations of the military.
The BRP Tarlac, also known as the SSV-1, was constructed to an overall length of 123.0 m, with a length waterline of 114.6 m, and a length between perpendiculars at 107.5 m. It has a breadth of 21.8m, depth of 11.3m, and a draft of 5.0 m.
The SSV-1 has an endurance of 30 days straight operation, and has an operating range of 9360 NM, with power required 2 x 2920 kW. It can accommodate a total of 621 persons, or troops of 500 persons. It likewise has a helipad and a VIP cabin for 121 persons, and displacement of 7,200 tons.
The SSV-1 can run up to 16 knots max, and cruising speed of 13 knots max.