The UK Navy’s Royal Fleet Auxiliary vessel (RFA) Argus has successfully completed its 11-month revamp programme and returned to service at sea.
The upgrade programme followed after the vessel completed a six-month ebola-combatting mission in Sierra Leone.
The 28,000t ship was deployed to support efforts to tackle the ebola outbreak in West Africa.
During the operation, codenamed Operation Gritrock, RFA Argus served as the launch-pad for three Merlin helicopters from 820 Naval Air Squadron, and provided aviation and amphibious support, and medical capability to the Department for International Development.
The vessel also helped supply medicine, food and supplies around the country for both the forces on the ground treating the local population, as well as for the people in isolated or cut-off communities.
RFA Argus features a 100-bed hospital on-board, which can be suited to the kind of treatment that needs to be administered.
The vessel is fitted with self-defence guns and decoys, and has an occasionally embarked operational unit.
The ship, apart from serving as medical assistance, also has the capability to act as an aviation training ship, with Fleet Air Arm air and ground crews leveraging on her experience of operating helicopters at sea.
Image: RFA Argus returns to sea after overhaul. Photo: courtesy of Royal Navy.