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Carrier transporting cars

Posted: Thu Apr 12, 2018 11:14 pm
by phavoc
There was a thread a few weeks ago about military ships carrying cargo. While it's not normal, evidently the Navy does it on an irregular basis. It's called an opportunity lift, and when a large ship, like a carrier, is doing a home port change the navy takes advantage of the carrier to save a lot of money by transporting the sailor's cars. From the photo it looks like they keep the forward catapults free, but the main sea deck is covered with vehicles. For this trip the carrier was going from San Diego to Bremerton for maintenance, so it's air wing was not present.

In reference to the discussion about using naval vessels as cargo ships, I suppose it might occur more often in a Traveller setting as well, but it seems like the logical use would be opportunity transport where the ships are not expected to do any fighting while they transit to their destination. And this is meant to take advantage of free cargo space.

Still interesting and something I wasn't aware of. ... ald-reagan

Re: Carrier transporting cars

Posted: Sat Apr 14, 2018 10:16 pm
by Condottiere
I think this falls under strategic manoeuvres.

Re: Carrier transporting cars

Posted: Sun Apr 15, 2018 2:11 am
by Reynard
Navies do have supply ships, tankers and the hybrid dromedaries. If you plan to move cargo I'd say a purpose built vessel not on other duties would fit the bill. A space borne version of each could match.

Re: Carrier transporting cars

Posted: Sun Apr 15, 2018 4:10 am
by Epicenter
I think it's very reasonable that military ships that are "going that way anyway" would carry cargoes. I think a ship going to a Naval Depot for maintenance or coming back would likely be packed to the gills with cargo - ranging from hard-to-find and no-longer-produced items being used to refit older ships that can be found on ships in some boneyard on the frontiers ("We selling a bunch of really old TL11 fighters to a client state...but we realized we don't have any spares for the landing gear...but there's a naval base way out in the boonies that has several hundred of those fighters ... we could ask them to break up those fighters for spares and ship it out to us") to comestibles (comfort foods and so on) being sent to the depots. If the trip is long, it's likely that naval personnel might even ride along for some portion of the trip going from duty station to duty station, or back towards their mustering out world.

Depending on the degree of corruption in some area, military ships may spend a lot of time doing "strategic relocation" between planets carrying cargoes that are making a group of admirals and nobles immensely wealthy (since the crew costs and maintenance are billed to the Imperium at large).

Similarly, if in your TU teams of Patrol Cruisers go on circuits of frontier worlds, it's entirely possible they carry a lot of the mail and supplies for the local presence in a system. On some frontier world with only a few thousand people living on it and the "Imperial Presence" consists of perhaps a mustered out imperial marine and family serving as constable, judge, and ambassador, the ability to secure off-world goods for the locals and getting them shipped via Patrol Cruisers might be a way for the Imperium to project soft power by earning the gratitude of the locals on some world that is so out of the way and has such a low population it's not even worth free traders to visit.

Re: Carrier transporting cars

Posted: Sun Apr 15, 2018 6:24 pm
by phavoc
These activities are, at least as I read, a rarity. It would only work when the ship is expected to not have to engage in any sort of patrol or action. In this particular case it was off the west coast of CA, a short jaunt for the carrier.

Using military for jobs and functions outside of their job is generally frowned upon my modern militaries. You've seen the images of Russian and Eastern European militaries helping out with the harvest season, but these are conscripts and their economies are relatively less efficient than their western counterparts. If you look at the US, it's only the Guard that gets called out in an emergency, not the main branches.

So it would/should be exception rather than the rule for Imperial forces to do the same - using modern-day precedents. Now system navies, or 2nd..N tier navies would be more likely to have this encountered. But keep in mind you don't have planets with outsystem ownership of other worlds (I think there are some exceptions in descriptions I've read). The Imperium doesn't want planets to own more than a single world. Having smaller polities like that makes for more liklihood of a real challenger to Imperial authority.

Re: Carrier transporting cars

Posted: Sun Apr 15, 2018 10:03 pm
by Condottiere
The Kokirraks have a lot of spare space.

It depends on spare capacity that can be utilized, which the Imperium Navy probably has a lot of.

My take on the Confederation Navy might permit this on their auxiliaries; the Zhodani have an elite caste.