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1 avril 2015 3 01 /04 /avril /2015 11:50
HMS Queen Elizabeth - photo QEC

HMS Queen Elizabeth - photo QEC


April 1, 2015 by George Allison · ukdefencejournal.org.uk


A leaked consultation document from this years Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR) planning phase appears to suggest that the Royal Navy will now order a third Queen Elizabeth class aircraft carrier in response to a resurgent Russia.


Sources in the MoD stress that the new ship, HMS Princess Diana, will incorporate lessons learned in the design and build stages of the first two vessels of the class. Queen Elizabeth was launched in 2014; Prince of Wales is due to join the fleet towards the end of the decade. After her launch and trials, Queen Elizabeth is due to be handed over to the Royal Navy in 2017.


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11 mars 2015 3 11 /03 /mars /2015 12:50
HMS Prince of Wales build intensifies

11 mars 2015 Royal Navy


The build profile of HMS Prince of Wales intensifies as blocks are moved around the yard to accommodate the programme of lifts including that of the Gas Turbine Alternator. This video shows one of the sponsons being moved.

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13 février 2015 5 13 /02 /février /2015 08:50
The Eyes of the Future RN Carrier Strike Force

Thales UK and Lockheed Martin submitted final offers for the Crowsnest carrier based, Helicopter borne AEW solutions last month, competing for the £500 million ($761 million) contract.


Feb 8, 2015 Defence-Update


The British MOD is set to select soon the future Airborne Early Warning (AEW) system to be deployed on the future Royal Navy (RN) Queen Elizabeth II aircraft carriers. The Crowsnest airborne surveillance and control (ASaC) program set to become operational in 2019, will providing the Queen Elizabeth Class aircraft carriers an organic air surveillance and battlespace management for the carrier strike force from 2020.


Thales UK and Lockheed Martin submitted final offers for the Crowsnest solutions last month, competing for the £500 million ($761 million) contract. Although the two radar systems proposed by the companies are designed for the Royal Navy AgustaWestland EH101 Merlin Mk 2 ASaC helicopters, they are profoundly different in their mission approach, future capabilities and cost. As part of the U.K. defense ministry’s assessment of the two options, both have been flight tested on a Merlin Mk. 2.

As the Sea King family helicopters is due to retire in 2016, MOD is extending the service of a number of the Sea King helicopters operated by 849 Naval Air Squadron through 2018, to prevent a capability gap between the withdrawal of the Sea King ASaC.7 and the introduction of Merlin ASaC.2. 10 of the Merlin helicopters are to be modified to accept the Airborne Surveillance and Control (ASaC) system, configured as ‘roll on/roll off’ kit.

Leading a £750 million ($1.15 billion) upgrade to 30 of the Royal Navy’s legacy Merlin HM1 helicopters, Lockheed Martin UK has been awarded a £24 million contract to run a competition to design, develop and demonstrate Crowsnest. As the company is also one of the competitors for the tender, the Merlin team has to be ‘firewalled’ to prevent leaking commercially sensitive information to Lockheed Martin UK.

The solution proposed by Thales UK recapitalizes existing the Searchwater 2000 radars currently providing the AEW mission for the Royal Navy on board HMS Ocean. These helicopters carry the mechanically rotating radar in a retractable drum-shaped dome lowered into position below the helicopter after takeoff. Positioned below the fuselage, the rotating radar gains unobstructed view of the hemisphere below, thus covering effectively 360 degrees. Thales plans to utilize this system for the new platform, using a modernized and updated radar along with its associated Cerberus mission system – both are currently used on the Sea King ASaC7.


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18 décembre 2014 4 18 /12 /décembre /2014 08:50
Babcock converting Phalanx for use of British carrier


LONDON, Dec. 17 (UPI)


Phalanx Close-In Weapon Systems are being converted back to their maritime configuration and upgraded for use on the Royal Navy's new Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier


Phalanx Close-In Weapon Systems are being converted back to their maritime configuration and upgraded for use on the Royal Navy's new Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier

Britain's new aircraft carrier, the Queen Elizabeth, is to be fitted with Raytheon's Phalanx weapon systems for close-in defense.

The three systems for the carrier will be provided by British engineering firm Babcock International, in association with Raytheon, which will deliver and install Phalanx 1B kits to convert the systems to their original configuration for maritime use. The kit also upgrades the system.

Babcock said a kit for a fourth Phalanx system will be delivered under the Ministry of Defense contract.

Babcock is the in-service support provider to the Ministry of Defense for Phalanx systems, managing and performing all support activities and providing logistics support for spares and repairable units. It said it will procure the Phalanx 1B systems in partnership with Raytheon, and will also undertake the land-based Phalanx weapon system conversions using Babcock weapons support engineers.

The systems are to be delivered by March of next year.

"Following the successful on-schedule delivery of a similar contract last year, we are delighted to have this further opportunity to apply our expertise and work with Raytheon to help the MOD and Royal Navy build the Phalanx CIWS capability it needs."

Phalanx CIWS is a rapid-fire, computer-controlled radar and 20mm Gatling gun system. The Phalanx 1B upgrade incorporates a side-mounted Forward Looking Infra-Red Camera that enables the system against surface targets and slow air targets in addition to anti-ship missiles.

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17 décembre 2014 3 17 /12 /décembre /2014 08:50
UK Places Order For Lightning II Fighter Jets

16 déc. 2014 British Forces news


The UK has formally placed an order for its first four front line F-35 fighter jets.

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4 décembre 2014 4 04 /12 /décembre /2014 13:50
Defence Secretary gets update on aircraft carrier project


1 December 2014 Ministry of Defence, Defence Equipment and Support and The Rt Hon Michael Fallon MP


Michael Fallon visited Scotland to see the progress being made in building the UK's Queen Elizabeth Class (QEC) aircraft carriers.


While visiting the Aircraft Carrier Alliance, in Rosyth, Mr Fallon met with the project team to discuss the build progress of the second carrier, HMS Prince of Wales.

HMS Queen Elizabeth, which was formally named by Her Majesty the Queen in July this year, is currently being fitted out in Rosyth dockyard before arriving in Portsmouth.

Assembly of HMS Prince of Wales is also well underway. Speaking from the flight deck of HMS Queen Elizabeth, Mr Fallon said:

I came here to see for myself that the project is on track and on time to give Britain carrier strike capability, with HMS Queen Elizabeth operating with new F-35 planes by 2020.

These carriers will spearhead Britain’s sea power for the next 50 years, keeping the nation safe at home and protecting our interests abroad.

These magnificent ships are testament to the skill of the British shipbuilding industry and have created jobs not only in Rosyth and Scotland but across the UK. Our investment demonstrates the Government’s commitment that UK warships are only built in UK shipyards.

Work on the QEC carriers has created or sustained around 8,000 highly skilled jobs.

In Scotland alone, the QEC work has helped to directly support some 4,000 jobs and hundreds of apprentices at the Rosyth and Clyde shipyards.

With the MOD having invested some £2.66 billion in the programme at these shipyards so far – it is clear that Defence is making an unequivocal and continuing commitment to Scottish industry.

Ian Booth, Managing Director of the Aircraft Carrier Alliance, said:

We’re incredibly proud to be delivering the nation’s flagships and delighted to have the opportunity to show the Defence Secretary the progress we’re making on both ships following the naming ceremony in July.

HMS Queen Elizabeth has now reached an important engineering milestone which allows us to bring all her systems to life and HMS Prince of Wales, which only started assembly in September here in Rosyth, is now more than 40% complete.

HMS Queen Elizabeth will be handed over to the Royal Navy in 2017 and are expected to enter service by 2020.

With an expected service life of up to 50 years, the QEC carriers will be highly versatile and powerful joint Defence assets, able to meet the widest range of tasks around the world.

They are the largest, most capable and effective surface warships ever constructed in the UK.

The Defence Secretary also reiterated that there has been no change in the delivery programme for the F-35B strike aircraft which will fly from the carriers.

The phased approach to ordering F35 is working, with the first batch on track to enter initial maritime operating capability alongside HMS Queen Elizabeth in December 2020 as planned.

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1 décembre 2014 1 01 /12 /décembre /2014 08:52
Ministry of Defence clarify Queen Elizabeth class carrier F-35 plans


November 30, 2014 by George Allison · ukdefencejournal.org.uk


The Ministry of Defence have clarified the details surrounding the Queen Elizabeth class aircraft carriers and their complement of F-35B strike aircraft.


There has been speculation in the media that there has been a change in the delivery programme for the F-35B that may result in delays to the roll out of the UK’s Carrier Strike capability – and that, in an operational emergency, US jets may fly from the Carriers until the UK F35 fleet is ready.


    This is not the case. It was always the intention to take a phased approach to ordering F35.


    We are fully committed to both the F35 and the Queen Elizabeth Carrier programmes -both of which are on track to enter initial maritime operating capability in December 2020 as planned.


    We expect Queen Elizabeth carrier to commence sea trials in 2017, and have been clear that UK F35 aircraft will be used for first of class flying trials in 2018.


    Our relationship with the US is mutually beneficial and we share a sense of common purpose. In 2012 we signed an agreement to enhance cooperation on carrier operations. Indeed, UK pilots have already flown from US ships in preparation for UK carrier operations.


It is our hope that by publishing this, we raise awareness of the nonsense typical of defence journalism in the mainstream media.

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1 décembre 2014 1 01 /12 /décembre /2014 08:50
Des avions de chasse américains sur le futur porte-avions britannique ?


28 novembre 2014. Portail des Sous-Marins


La Royal Navy pourrait demander à des escadrilles américaines d’utiliser son futur porte-avions, suite à des retards de livraison de ses chasseurs F-35 B.


Des sources au sein du ministère britannique de la défense expliquent que l’US Marine Corps se verrait proposer d’utiliser le HMS Queen Elizabeth.


La Grande-Bretagne prévoit que sa première escadrille de F-35 soit opérationnelle en 2018, mais selon la BBC, des retards sont prévisibles. Le ministère ne dit être informé d’aucun retard.


L’objectif est qu’une escadrille de F-35 britanniques soit opérationnelle en 2021. Mais il s’écoulera au moins 3 ans entre la mise en service du Queen Elizabeth (2018) et celle des escadrilles de F-35.


La commande des 14 premiers chasseurs devait intervenir en février. Mais des doutes persistants sur la fiabilité du logiciel et un incendie de moteur ont retardé la décision. Le mois dernier, la Grande-Bretagne a finalement annoncé sa première commande, mais elle ne portait que sur seulement 4 avions, juste de quoi effectuer les essais du Queen Elizabeth, « avec des F-35 B britanniques, pilotés par des pilotes britanniques. »


Après les élections générales en 2015, une nouvelle revue de défense devrait être lancée. Les 2 porte-avions devraient faire l’objet d’une attention particulière.


De nombreuses décisions ont été bloquées en attendant le résultat de la revue, comme par exemple les moyens de communication.


Référence : BBC News

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4 octobre 2014 6 04 /10 /octobre /2014 16:50
UK CVF Royal Navy aircraft carriers, HMS Queen Elizabeth

UK CVF Royal Navy aircraft carriers, HMS Queen Elizabeth


October 4, 2014: Strategy Page


On August 28 th , 2014 the last of Britain's Invincible class carriers, HMS Illustrious, was decommissioned. This comes only three years after Illustrious returned to service after a $60 million refurbishment. At that point the Illustrious no longer carried Harrier vertical takeoff/landing jets. Instead, 20 helicopters were on board and crew size had been reduced to 600. At that time it had already been decided to replace Illustrious with HMS Ocean in 2014. Ocean is an amphibious assault ship that was out of service from 2012 until 2014 for upgrades and maintenance. The 22,000 ton Ocean is now in service. The ship carries 18 helicopters, along with 840 marines and 40 vehicles. Ocean can also operate up to 15 Harriers.


Meanwhile the Royal Navy is looking for someone to adopt the Illustrious as a museum ship. The three Invincible class carriers entered service in the early 1980s and the other two were scraped in 2011 and 2014. All three were originally built for anti-submarine operations against Soviet subs in the North Atlantic. But the Soviet Navy disappeared in the early 1990s and the Invincibles were converted to more varied uses.


In early 2011, only 18 months after returning to service (after another round of upgrades) another Invincible, the HMS Ark Royal was decommissioned. Thus for a few months Britain had no aircraft carrier in service. The HMS Ocean did not count, as it only carried helicopters. But until the end of the decade, all British carriers will carry only helicopters. That's because in 2011 Britain retired all its Harrier vertical takeoff jets, which were the principal warplanes on the Invincible class carriers.


It was in late 2009 that the Ark Royal returned to service after seven months in the shipyard (for $20 million worth of repairs and upgrades). The Ark Royal also had a $47 million refit in 2006, and a more extensive, $210 million one, in 1999-2001, that resulted in a larger flight deck. The Ark Royal was to remain in service until the first of the two Queen Elizabeth class carriers entered service at the end of this decade. The Queen Elizabeths have been in the works since the late 1990s and the first one is expected to enter service by 2020.


The 22,000 ton Ark Royal entered service in 1985, one of three Invincible class carriers. It carried 24 aircraft and helicopters, and was operated by a crew of 1,100. The most notable aspect of a recent refit was the addition of accommodations for 400 marines. This made the Ark Royal into an amphibious carrier, and it could deliver the marines via helicopter, or boats. Earlier this year, the Invincible was towed to Turkey, where it is being broken up for scrap.


The new "Queen Elizabeth" class carriers are planning on having a ship's crew of 800 (or less) and an air wing complement of 600 personnel. Currently, you need a ship crew of about 2,000 for a carrier that size, plus nearly as many for the air wing. These carriers are going to cost about $5 billion each, and are to be in use for half a century (via periodic refits and refurbs). But the biggest cost will be personnel. Currently, it costs the U.S. Navy a bit over $100,000 per sailor per year. Do the math ($7 billion in crew costs over the life of each carrier.) So the smaller the crew, the greater the savings, and the more you can spend on upgrading the ship, buying new aircraft and the like.


These carriers will haul 34-45 aircraft and helicopters each and be able to handle about 110 flight operations every 24 hours. That's with current aircraft. The F-35C will be the primary warplane on the British carriers. But it's also likely that many, or all, of the next generation of aircraft on these ships will be robotic.

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11 septembre 2014 4 11 /09 /septembre /2014 16:50
BAE starts assembly phase of HMS Prince of Wales

Construction begins on the second Queen Elizabeth-class aircraft carrier, HMS Prince of Wales. Photo BAE Systems.


11 September 2014 naval-technology.com


BAE Systems has successfully docked the hull sections of the UK Royal Navy's second Queen Elizabeth-class aircraft carrier, HMS Prince of Wales, at its Rosyth shipyard, marking the commencement of the carrier's assembly phase.


The latest move comes within days of the announcement by the UK Prime Minster David Cameron that HMS Prince of Wales will be commissioned, assuring that Britain would always possess an aircraft carrier, available from 2020.


Aircraft Carrier Alliance managing director Ian Booth said: "Every milestone in the carrier programme is hugely significant and the recent announcement that HMS Prince of Wales will enter service means there is a real sense of excitement as we start to bring the second ship together.


"Everyone working across the Alliance is incredibly proud of the work undertaken so far, in what is currently one of the biggest engineering projects in the country and we remain focused on delivering both ships to the highest standards."


Weighing at 6,000t and 8,000t respectively, both Lower Blocks 02 and 03 will form the distinctive forward hull section and the mid-section of the aircraft carrier's hull respectively.


Lower Block 02 will be equipped with machinery spaces, stores and switchboards, while Lower Block 03 will feature 160 cabins and the ship's bakery.


Following the anticipated structural completion by July 2016, Prince of Wales will begin sea trials in January 2019, followed by acceptance in August of the same year.


In addition, BAE is currently working on outfitting the HMS Queen Elizabeth preparing it for scheduled sea trials in 2016, with scheduled commissioning in 2017.


The UK is also investing to transform HM Naval Base Portsmouth as the home port of the Queen Elizabeth-class aircraft carriers, with work involving dredging the approach and main channels within the harbour, upgrading navigational support and the revamp of several jetties, together with extensive infrastructure enhancements.


Delivered by the Aircraft Carrier Alliance, a joint initiative by BAE Systems, Thales UK, Babcock and the UK Ministry of Defence, both aircraft carriers will be the showpiece of Britain's defence capability for the 21st century.


The two 300m-long, 74m-wide and 65,000t vessels will boost sustained operations and ferry an air wing of up to 40 aircraft, as well as offer armed forces with a four-acre military operating base that can travel about 500 miles per day and be deployed anywhere worldwide.

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5 juillet 2014 6 05 /07 /juillet /2014 11:50
HMS Queen Elizabeth Naming Ceremony


04.07.201 British Forces News

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4 juillet 2014 5 04 /07 /juillet /2014 11:50
HMS Queen Elizabeth Facts


04.07.2014 Defence Headquarters


As the carrier is named today, find out more about this feat of British engineering.

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26 juin 2014 4 26 /06 /juin /2014 11:50
Tour around the Air Engineering Dept on HMS Queen Elizabeth

25 juin 2014 Royal Navy


Here is a video giving you a short tour around the Air Engineering Department on board HMS Queen Elizabeth, the first in her class.

Her naming ceremony takes place on the 4th July and is a Naval tradition dating back hundreds of years.

For more information about HMS Queen Elizabeth visit our feature page

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24 juin 2014 2 24 /06 /juin /2014 16:50
David Atkinson - Reservist - video by BAE Systems


24.06.2014 BAE Systems


David is the Military Air & Information Lead for integrating the F-35 with the Queen Elizabeth-class aircraft carriers. In the Territorial Army he's currently Vice-President of the Army Officer Selection Board and Assistant Director (Reserves) for the Land Directorate.

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25 mars 2014 2 25 /03 /mars /2014 17:50
UK and US demonstrate new concepts for landing F-35 aircraft on carriers

An F35 simulator. Photof BAE Systems


25 March 2014 naval-technology.com


The UK and the US have jointly conducted piloted flight simulation trial at the BAE Systems' F35 Simulation facility at Warton to test new concepts for landing fixed wing aircraft on aircraft carriers.


The trials demonstrated a new shipborne rolling vertical landing (SRVL) manoeuvre concept, designed by BAE for recovering the UK Ministry of Defence's (MoD) Lockheed Martin-built F-35C Lightning II joint strike fighter on to the deck of its new Queen Elizabeth-class (QEC) aircraft carriers.


Both the nations have developed enhanced aircraft flight controls and displays for the F35C carrier variant arrested recovery and the F35B short take-off and vertical landing (STOVL) variant SRVL recovery to the aircraft carrier.


During the testing, the enhanced control law modes for F35C arrested recoveries have been validated to a Nimitz-class aircraft carrier, resulting in positive feedback from the US Navy and F35 test pilots.


The US Naval Air Systems Command Aeromechanics division James Denham said: "During this trial we've identified improvements to deliver more accurate touchdowns, less bolters and reduced pilot training.


"Ultimately, what we've been able to test in this simulated environment allows us to inform future concepts of operation," Denham added.


The SRVL manoeuvre offers enhanced 'bring back' payload, including weapons and fuel, capability for the F-35 aircraft when compared to vertical landings owing to the wing lift created by forward airspeed at touchdown.


Further trials to test the same control law mode for F35B SRVL recoveries are scheduled to commence soon for the UK's QEC aircraft carriers with the US Navy observing.

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10 septembre 2013 2 10 /09 /septembre /2013 11:50
Ground-breaking Radar for Aircraft Carriers Begins Testing at Secret Facility on Isle of Wight

Sep 9, 2013 ASDNews Source : BAE Systems PLC


A new 3D radar capable of cutting through interference equal to 10,000 mobile phone signals, has successfully commenced integration trials at a secret electromagnetic radar testing facility on the Isle of Wight.


The testing of ARTISAN 3D radar is in advance of installation on the new Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers (QEC) which are being assembled in Rosyth, Scotland.


The ARTISAN trials will test a series of integrated systems which include the provision of 3D air surveillance, target identification and air traffic management services for the ships,   The ARTISAN 3D Radar will provide extensive air traffic control and medium range tactical picture capability with ground breaking features such as tracking more than 900 targets at one time and has the ability to spot objects as small as a tennis ball travelling up to three times the speed of sound.


The BAE Systems radar testing facility on the island occupies the site of the old Somerton Aerodrome which began as an airfield in 1916. As well as being equipped for the manufacture and test of aircraft components, the aerodrome operated flights between London and the Isle of Wight in the 1930s. The site was taken over by the Decca gramophone company in 1959 which had contributed to the war effort resulting in a number of ventures into marine radar and navigation. This heritage continues today through BAE Systems’ expert radar testing at the site.


ARTISAN 3D is successfully providing 'real world' tracks and radar video to the QEC Combat Management System - which is also produced by BAE Systems - whilst receiving simulated 'own-ship' data in the QEC Mission System Test Facility.  ARTISAN 3D is being successfully controlled from CMS consoles to provide operators with both a medium range tactical picture and the essential air traffic control picture the ships will rely on.


In addition to the strong integration results, the system is operating successfully with the QEC Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) system, which can identify aircraft as friendly and track its range from a potential threat.


The aircraft carriers HMS Queen Elizabeth and HMS Prince of Wales are being delivered by the Aircraft Carrier Alliance, a unique partnering relationship between BAE Systems, Thales UK, Babcock and the UK Ministry of Defence. The first ship will begin sea trials in 2017.


Les Gregory, Product and Training services Director, BAE Systems said, "I am delighted that the ARTISAN 3D Radar is producing excellent results as predicted for the QEC, it is an exciting milestone not only in the development of BAE Systems radar programme but for the future of Royal Navy warships."


The medium-range radar system, which has a reach of up to 200km completed its factory testing in December 2012 and was installed at the Aircraft Carrier Alliance Electromagnetic Environment Assessment facility at BAE Systems, Cowes, earlier this year.

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