NORFOLK, Va. – The USNS Big Horn, a Henry J. Kaiser-class fleet replenishment oiler of the United States Navy, is deploying Monday.
The deployment will send the ship to the Navy’s Fifth Fleet of operation that covers the Middle East, the Persian Gulf, and parts of the Indian Ocean, according to the Navy. They will be on deployment for five months.
The main function of the Big Horn will be to provide fuel, fleet cargo and stores to Navy ships at sea.
The USNS Big Horn is the twelfth ship of the Henry J. Kaiser’s Combat Logistic Force ships.
Underway replenishments are a critical naval capability which allows U.S. Navy and allied ships to be resupplied with fuel, food and stores without pulling into a port, say officials with the Navy.
Replenishment oilers like the USNS Big Horn can move at speed up to 20 knots and are fitted with five fueling stations capable of pumping 900,000 gallons per hour to two ships at a time.
MSC operates approximately 120 non-combatant, civilian-crewed ships that replenish U.S. Navy ships, conduct specialized missions, and strategically preposition combat cargo at sea around the world while moving military cargo and supplies used by deployed U.S. forces and coalition partners.