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Exclusive interview with Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier programme Director

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Takeda
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Exclusive interview with Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier programme Director

Mensaje por Takeda el 15/5/2012, 11:27 am

Exclusive interview with Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier programme Director

Contributor: Andrew Elwell
Posted: 05/15/2012 12:00:00 AM EDT | 0


Geoff Searle, Programme Director for the UK’s new Queen Elizabeth-class (QEC) aircraft carriers, sits down with Defence IQ to discuss the Aircraft Carrier Alliance and its progress to date as these two world-class carriers, HMS Queen Elizabeth and HMS Prince of Wales, begin to take shape. During the interview Searle discusses how the government’s announcement about returning to the STOVL F-35 variant may affect construction, challenges the Alliance has overcome as well as giving us some facts and figures on how big, fast and better these new carriers are. Hint: it’s really, very and a lot.
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What is the Aircraft Carrier Alliance?

The Aircraft Carrier Alliance is a unique partnering relationship between BAE Systems, Thales UK, Babcock and the UK Ministry of Defence. The Aircraft Carrier Alliance has been formed specifically to deliver the aircraft carriers HMS Queen Elizabeth and HMS Prince of Wales to the Royal Navy.

What stage are you currently at with the project?

HMS Queen Elizabeth is now firmly in the assembly phase. Sections constructed at yards across the UK are making their way to Rosyth where assembly is taking place. Currently (as of May 15) there are 13,000 tonnes of HMS Queen Elizabeth already assembled in the dry dock at Rosyth. That’s equivalent to more than one and a half T45 destroyers!

HMS Prince of Wales is well into its construction phase, and elements are being built at yards in Portsmouth and Glasgow.

Has the project been successful to date in terms of time and budget?

It’s well-known that alterations to the requirements have resulted in several changes to the programme, and although these have meant changes to scheduling and budgets, I am very proud of the way teams across the Aircraft Carrier Alliance have responded. The entire project, despite being massively complex, is running well and the build of both ships is progressing apace.

What has been the biggest challenge in the construction of the carriers so far?

The aircraft carriers are a new class of ships, requiring an entirely new approach to shipbuilding and are on a scale unlike anything constructed for the Royal Navy before.

Developing the Aircraft Carrier Alliance, and in doing so creating an environment where different companies can work with each other and alongside the customer has been a huge success. But that sort of change doesn’t come naturally. It required a considerable change in thinking and approach, but it’s a credit to everyone involved that we continue to put the alliance first. The progress made over the last few months in particular stands in testament to that.

Did the delay over the F-35 variant decision make any difference to the carriers’ construction – will reverting back to the F-35B STOVL jet cause any significant difficulties for you?

The ships were always designed to be able to be adapted for either STOVL or CV operations and they are already being built in the STOVL configuration. The decision to go with the STOVL aircraft means we can now firm up the plans and we are now working with MOD to re-activate our plans to develop both ships as STOVL-capable.

How different are the QE class carriers to the ones they are replacing? What’s the most significant change?

The most obvious change is their size. But the power and propulsion units and the mission systems which will bring the ship to life will help create a new level of military capability. Of course the F-53B aircraft they will operate will represent a step change in capability too. By building the ships with two 'islands' - one for ship control and one for air traffic control - we can ensure they are as effective and efficient as possible when it comes to mounting future operations. They will play a pivotal role in the UK's defence strategy, while also providing a platform for humanitarian aid.

How many people are working on the construction effort?

There are in the region of 10,000 people directly involved in the delivery of the Queen Elizabeth Class, and more than 300 UK companies providing everything from mission systems to microwave ovens.

Just how big are these carriers – could you give us some perspective?

The Queen Elizabeth Class are the largest warships ever constructed for the Royal Navy, by orders of magnitude. Three times the size of the Invincible Class, they will give the UK four acres of sovereign territory and require 1.5 million metres2 of paintwork, which is slightly more than the acreage of Hyde Park. The picture to right is of HMS Queen Elizabeth in Rosyth Dockyard, beside HMS Illustrious, which shows just how large the ships will be in comparison.



What’s been your proudest moment while working on the project?

Not surprisingly, some of the most visual moments really stand out, the arrival of LB03 and the Goliath crane’s first lifts were particularly memorable. But the most important thing for me has been the team of people I have the privilege to work with. None of us have operated in an alliance environment before, but everyone has risen to the challenge. Teams across the alliance continue to work incredibly hard to deliver their objectives time and again.

I was also particularly proud to see the programme achieve one million man-hours without a single reportable accident last year. Without a doubt ensuring the health and safety of the workforce is a top priority for us all.

What about some stats – the weight of the carrier when it’s completed, length, how fast will it go, number of engines, number of decks, how many aircraft will it be able to hold?

The ships will be 65,000 tonnes at full displacement
Length: 280m
Width: 70m
Range; 8,000 to 10,000 nautical miles
Each ship has two propellers which together will generate 80MW of power - enough to run 1,000 family cars or 50 high speed trains
56m from keel to masthead, which is four metres taller than Niagra Falls!
The distribution network on board will generate enough energy to power 300,000 kettles or 5,500 family homes (a town the size of Swindon)
1.5 million m2 of paintwork, which is 370 acres, or slightly more than acreage of Hyde Park
Each ship’s two propellers will weigh 33 tonnes each - nearly two and half times as heavy as a double decker bus and one and half times as high
Each of the two huge aircraft lifts can move two Joint Strike Fighters from the hangar to the flight deck in 60 seconds. They're so powerful that together they could lift the entire ship's crew
Weapons: Designed to receive the latest generation of the Phalanx close-in weapon system for defence of the vessel. Each ship is also designed to receive 30mm guns and mini-guns located to counter asymmetric threats
Power: 2 x Rolls-Royce MT30 Gas Turbines and 4 x Diesel Generator Sets giving total installed power of 109MWe
110MW power station on board each ship – that’s enough to provide all of Portsea Island with power
The ship's Long Range radar is the same size as a large mobile home
The anchors will be 3.1m high, each weighing 13 tonnes - almost as much as a double decker bus
Water treatment plant onboard: The ships will produce over 500 tonnes of fresh water daily
£1.3 billion worth of sub contracts for work on the QE Class have now been placed with companies across most regions in the UK
What’s the next big milestone?

The next stage is moving the programme into Dock Cycle B.

There are three cycles in the assembly phase. Dock Cycle A – the assembly of LB03 and CB03 and sponsons – is almost complete. Dock Cycle B involves integrating the blocks that make up the forward section of the ship. So the arrival of sections LB02 later this month, and CB02 in early June, will signal the start of the next phase in the construction of HMS Queen Elizabeth. But also this year we start the vitally important activities of setting the ship to life as we power up the electrical systems and set equipment to work – the start of the process that will lead to trials and acceptance over the coming years.

Link: http://www.defenceiq.com/naval-and-maritime-defence/articles/exclusive-interview-with-uk-s-aircraft-carrier-chi/&mac=DFIQ_OI_Featured_2011&utm_source=defenceiq.com&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=DefOptIn&utm_content=5/15/12

Takeda
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Re: Exclusive interview with Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier programme Director

Mensaje por Takeda el 15/5/2012, 11:28 am

Yo no había visto fotos del estado de construcción del HMS Queen Elizabeth, se ve bastante avanzado allá, por lo que se vé ya sólo se están ensamblando los módulos.

Takeda
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Re: Exclusive interview with Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier programme Director

Mensaje por Takeda el 31/5/2012, 10:46 am

Defence Minister Peter Luff discusses the F-35 and carrier strike capability
Contributor: Andrew Elwell
Posted: 05/29/2012 12:00:00 AM EDT | 0



Does the UK need an aircraft carrier? Does carrier strike represent a relevant strategic capability considering Britain’s likely role and influence in world affairs over the next 50 years?

There is growing debate among politicians, the military, historians and analysts about whether or not carrier strike capability is justifiable on the back of the significant cost of building two Queen Elizabeth class carriers and acquiring the new fleet of fifth generation fighters that they will accommodate.

I posed this question to Peter Luff, the Minister responsible for defence procurement at the MOD, during an interview recently. He is firmly on the side of the exponents.

“It would be a very big decision for the UK to abandon carrier strike as one of its key capabilities to project power around the world,” Luff said.

His slight hesitation in answering the question suggested the premise itself was somewhat amiss. That even the thought of not proceeding with a carrier strike strategy was unrealistic, irrational.

As a strategic defence capability to protect our nation we need carrier strike. As an effective way of safeguarding our trade, resources and supplies globally we need carrier strike. As a way of projecting our power around the world we need carrier strike.

“We are still, I think, fundamentally a maritime power with absolute dependence on trade,” said Luff. “Our ability to show that we are able to use the sea to protect our nation is of strategic importance.

“The ability to project power around the world is uniquely offered by carrier strike, so it’s the right thing to go for.”

The strategic importance of carrier strike was highlighted in the government’s recent decision to revert back to the STOVL F-35B variant of the Joint Strike Fighter. One of the key drivers for that decision was based on the fact that if the MOD proceeded with the current plan then the UK would have been without carrier strike capability for 13 years. With the STOVL variant, carrier strike will be restored three years earlier.

“A ten year gap [in carrier strike capability] was the most we felt we could take strategically – a thirteen year gap would have been irresponsible,” said Luff.

In his article, ‘Does anybody still need aircraft carriers?’, Tom de Castella says that “there have been sceptics for some time."

“In 1981, David Howarth wrote in Famous Sea Battles that "the only practical value of carriers in the future will be in simply existing, not in fighting". To use them in anger would be to trigger a nuclear war, he argued.

“But just a year later, the UK's carriers ensured that the Falkland Islands were regained.”

Having an operational aircraft carrier capability allows the UK to not only project power on the world stage, but also support other nations around the globe.

“They will play a pivotal role in the UK's defence strategy,” Geoff Searle, Programme Director for the QEC aircraft carriers, told Defence IQ in an interview earlier this month, “while also providing a platform for humanitarian aid.”

Aside from strategic relevance, there’s also the plain fact that we are building the carriers now. Does mothballing both really present itself as a viable option?

“We have two superb carrier ships being built, not to use them would be a crime,” Luff concluded.

God Save the Queen…and the Prince of Wales

On the QEC aircraft carriers though Luff did say that, although the reversion to the STOVL variant may lead to both carriers being active in the future, “there’s no immediate plan to operate two carriers.”

“We now have the ability to operate a second carrier should we choose to do so,” said Luff, “but that decision is effectively for the next SDSR.

“So at present we stick with using one, but with the next SDSR due by 2015 … we will review that.”

That’s probably not quite the affirmative answer many would hope for. The Navy Campaign, an independent body borne out of the SDSR, has been working closely with the government as it weighed up which F-35 variant to buy. At the time of Hammond’s announcement it said the following:

“The Government has repeatedly stated that by reverting to the STOVL jet, both carriers will become operational sooner than the one ‘cats and traps’ carrier would. We look forward to seeing both carriers in service.”

The F-35

The obvious question: Why did the government choose to make a U-turn on the decision to procure the STOVL F-35B variant of the JSF?

“The facts changed,” the purposeful and candid defence minister told me.

“We had understood that the carriers were easily adaptable to take the ‘cats and traps’ system. That probably was true in their early design life, say ten years ago … but it was just more expensive to install the equipment in the carriers than we had been told at the time of the SDSR [in 2010].”

So cost was a major driver in the decision. But so was capability.

“The other fact that changed from the SDSR was that there were doubts being stressed about the B variant,” Luff said, referring to the questions being asked about the design of the new jets after a number of issues surfaced at the time.
“But those doubts have now been swept aside; [the F-35B] is off probation,” Luff confirmed. “It’s done a lot of flying hours and landing on vessels, so that uncertainty over the B variant has disappeared.”

“The 2010 SDSR decision on carriers was right at the time, but the facts have changed and therefore so too must our approach,” Philip Hammond announced in a statement to parliament earlier this month regarding the F-35 decision. “This Government will not blindly pursue projects and ignore cost growth and delays.”
On the F-35 U-turn Luff is equally clear: “It was the responsible thing to do.”
You can read the second part of this interview with Peter Luff here, where the Minister talks about balancing the books at MOD and the future of DE&S.

Link: http://www.defenceiq.com/air-forces-and-military-aircraft/articles/defence-minister-peter-luff-discusses-carrier-stri/&mac=DFIQ_OI_Featured_2011&utm_source=defenceiq.com&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=DefOptIn&utm_content=5/31/12

Rogersukoi27
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Re: Exclusive interview with Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier programme Director

Mensaje por Rogersukoi27 el 29/9/2012, 6:17 pm



Le incluyo un video por computadora creando escenarios del diseño del Portaviones clase Queen Elizabeth del Reino Unido!
Esta impresionante el tamaño del diseño!!!!


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oIEQgBKXkME&feature=player_detailpage

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Re: Exclusive interview with Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier programme Director

Mensaje por Rogersukoi27 el 29/9/2012, 6:20 pm



Aqui otro video del mismo diseño!!!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9nsxjWDl7Lk&feature=player_detailpage

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Re: Exclusive interview with Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier programme Director

Mensaje por Sun Tzu el 18/10/2012, 6:17 pm

Primer Ministro británico supervisa construcción de portaaviones clase Queen Elizabeth.


El primer ministro del Reino Unido, David Cameron, visitó el astillero Rosyth para observar los trabajos de construcción del primer – de dos unidades contratadas – portaaviones clase Queen Elizabeth. Cameron arribó a las instalaciones en la mañana del 5 de octubre, donde sostuvo una reunión con unas 200 personas que participan activamente del proyecto, que pretende entregar al Ministerio de Defensa británico en el año 2016, el buque de guerra más potente jamas construido para la Real Armada. De una eslora de 280 metros, 65 mil toneladas métricas de desplazamiento y con capacidad para embarcar unas 40 aeronaves – el doble de capacidad del HMS Illustrious – el portaaviones está siendo constrido en diversos lugares del Reino Unido pero el ensamblaje se lleva a cabo en Rosyth.

De forma paralela a la visita del primer ministro, se realizó la transferencia de la sección de popa del portaaviones hacia una de las más grandes barcazas a nivel mundial, en el astillero Govan shipyard, en preparación para su traslado, el próximo 3 de noviembre, a Rosyth. Esta será la última sección del HMS Queen Elizabeth en arribar al astillero en el que empleados de BAE Systems y Babcock unen esfuerzos para ensamblar las diferentes secciones del inmenso navío. La manufactura del segundo portaaviones, HMS Prince of Wales, también se ha iniciado en los astilleros Govan y Portsmouth.

Angus Holt, funcionario de BAE Systems y encargado de la entrega de los bloques de los portaaviones clase Queen Elizabeth, en la ocasión, afirmó: “El evento marca la culminación de meses de arduo trabajo y preparación, y estoy muy orgulloso por los logros del staff al haber embarcado exitosamenete la sección de popa, a tiempo y además, construida bajo un estandar excepcional. El mero tamaño y complejidad del bloque, resalta las capacidades de los astilleros y el inmenso progreso realizado para entregar los buques bandera de la nación.” Los portaaviones clase Queen Elizabeth están siendo construidos y entregado por la Aircraft Carrier Alliance, una asociación entre BAE Systems, Thales UK, Babcock y el Ministerio de Defensa del Reino Unido.

maquina-de-combate.com


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Por Mèxico siempre leales.


Si luchas con monstruos, cuida de no convertirte también en monstruo." />

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Re: Exclusive interview with Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier programme Director

Mensaje por Von Leunam el 11/7/2014, 1:31 am


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Re: Exclusive interview with Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier programme Director

Mensaje por chapulincolorado el 11/7/2014, 1:46 am

se estan preparando para los f-35!!!

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Re: Exclusive interview with Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier programme Director

Mensaje por estril_02 el 11/7/2014, 12:10 pm





Ya tomo forma, y por la ultima foto se ve imponente, lo único que no me gusto es el skyjump, su forma se ve muy anticuada, de ahí para atrás se ve muy bien.

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Re: Exclusive interview with Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier programme Director

Mensaje por Von Leunam el 12/7/2014, 11:08 pm




·¦·Füµ®€R·¦·
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Re: Exclusive interview with Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier programme Director

Mensaje por ·¦·Füµ®€R·¦· el 12/7/2014, 11:25 pm

Mientras tanto los franceses nada mas miran el avance británico.


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Hola Invitado. Bienvenido(a) al foro Todo por México.

Recuerda visitar las Reglas del Foro
Si tienes dudas y sugerencias puedes postear en el Buzon
O solicitar asistencia vía Mensaje Privado
                         

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Re: Exclusive interview with Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier programme Director

Mensaje por Takeda el 13/7/2014, 9:20 am

Tampoco creo que tengan tanta prisa por terminarlo, no creo que su ala embarcada esté próxima a entregarse.

Takeda
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Re: Exclusive interview with Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier programme Director

Mensaje por Takeda el 6/11/2014, 7:35 am

Regenerating UK carrier airpower: The challenges and opportunities ahead


Contributor: Dr James Bosbotinis
Posted: 11/06/2014 12:00:00 AM EST

The process of regenerating UK carrier airpower has received two considerable boosts in the course of 2014. Firstly, the naming ceremony for HMS Queen Elizabeth constituted an important symbolic milestone in the development of the carrier programme and provided a tangible glimpse of the new aircraft carriers as complete ships. Secondly, the decision announced in September to commission Prince of Wales and operate both aircraft carriers has, for now at least, removed the uncertainty introduced in the 2010 Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR) regarding the fate of the second carrier. This decision places the prospects for the regeneration of UK carrier airpower on a much more solid foundation by ensuring that at least one of the ships is available continuously and avoids the UK possessing only a part-time carrier capability with the associated implications for proficiency and credibility. Moreover, the decision to operate both aircraft carriers enables a shift in focus for analysis: that is, a move from considering what is to be acquired to how is the capability provided by the carriers going to be utilised?

In this regard, two issues are of particular significance: how is the concept of Carrier Enabled Power Projection (CEPP) to be implemented, and how will Joint Force Lightning (JFL) be delivered? Both constitute unorthodox approaches to carrier airpower. Joint Force Lightning marks a continuation of the joint (Royal Navy and Royal Air Force) approach to deliver an interoperable land and sea-based fast jet capability, first attempted with Joint Force Harrier. CEPP reflects the legacy of the intense pressures on the carrier programme during the SDSR. Those pressures resulted in the need to highlight the flexibility of the carriers, with a particular emphasis on the role of the ships in supporting amphibious and helicopter operations - both of which are central to the expanded CEPP approach.

This paper discusses the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead as the UK moves toward bringing the Queen Elizabeth-class aircraft carriers and F-35B combat aircraft into service. The new aircraft carriers and the F-35, individually and combined, will provide the UK with potent new levels of capability, in some respects, unmatched outside of the United States (especially with regard to a sea-based fifth generation air capability). Realising this potential is, however, no simple task, presenting a number of challenges but also offering opportunities for innovation in the delivery of expeditionary airpower.

Developing Credible Carrier Airpower

The development of credible carrier airpower involves substantially more than just the acquisition of the relevant ships and aircraft. It encompasses the generation of an integrated capability drawing together a range of assets and personnel, guided by an overarching conceptual/doctrinal framework within a stable policy context (political vacillation has contributed to significant cost increases and delays to the Queen Elizabeth-class programme). Moreover, the generation of credible carrier airpower requires sustained long-term investment, financially and temporally, in order to ensure that the various elements of the complete capability – the carrier itself, the embarked fixed and rotary-wing aircraft and all personnel (including those from other services) – are proficient in operating in the maritime environment in all weathers, by day and night. In this regard, Fleet Air Arm experience suggests that at least 18 months front-line service are required for a fixed-wing pilot to attain full day and night deck qualification.

In order to provide the context for the discussion of the regeneration of UK carrier airpower over the coming decade, it is useful to briefly outline the task ahead, commencing with the introduction to service of HMS Queen Elizabeth. As first-of-class and, alongside the Type 45 Daring-class destroyers (which incorporate many new systems), marking a step change in capability for the Royal Navy, HMS Queen Elizabeth will be subject to extensive sea trials, due to commence in 2017, before initial fixed-wing aviation operations start the following year. The gap between the arrival of HMS Queen Elizabeth and the F-35B is fortuitous, as it will enable the Royal Navy to work-up HMS Queen Elizabeth and become familiar with its new systems and operation. This process will be facilitated by the experience already garnered through bringing the Daring-class into service; the command system in the Queen Elizabeth-class, for example, has evolved from that used in the Type 45. It also avoids the added risk of seeking to simultaneously bring into service a complex new ship and a fifth generation air system.

The core role of the Queen Elizabeth-class will be the delivery and support of joint expeditionary airpower, whether fixed-wing, rotary-wing or a combination of the two, drawing on Royal Navy, Royal Air Force and Army Air Corps assets. The utilisation of the Queen Elizabeth-class as ‘joint defence assets’ places an even greater premium on the development of an effective ship-air interface in order to facilitate the deployment of Royal Air Force and Army assets into an unfamiliar operational environment. This is key to enabling a cross-domain capability, that is, the ability to operate effectively across the physical environments (air, land and sea). In this context, it refers specifically to the ability to operate proficiently from the maritime environment into the land (in support of air manoeuvre operations) or air environments, utilising carrier basing. Developing cross-domain interoperability is contingent on the existence of ‘domain experts’, that is, personnel with an in-depth understanding of both environments, able to bridge the language and experience barrier and ease the integration of the unit into an unfamiliar environment. In this case, the Fleet Air Arm would provide the domain expertise necessary to enable carrier-based fixed and rotary-wing operations. As will be discussed below, this is particularly relevant to Joint Force Lightning.

The development of a proficient ship-air interface is also critical to generating interoperability with key allies and fellow F-35B operators, in particular the United States, Spain and Italy. The US Marine Corps (USMC), which actively lobbied in support of the UK opting for the F-35B, has and continues to provide significant assistance to UK efforts to regenerate its carrier air capability, namely with regard to ensuring that Royal Navy and RAF aviators continue to fly the Harrier thereby gaining sea-based STOVL experience. The Deputy Commandant for Marine Corps Aviation, Lieutenant General Jon Davis, who served a three-year tour with No. 3 Squadron RAF flying the Harrier GR5/7 from 1988 to 1991, has been instrumental in this process as was the former Commandant of the USMC, General James Amos and the Assistant Commandant, General John Paxton.

A notable example of Royal Navy-USMC cooperation, and demonstration of interoperability was the July 2007 Exercise Bold Step. This exercise saw the embarkation of 14 USMC Harriers on-board HMS Illustrious for two and a half weeks. During the deployment, approximately 30 pilots were qualified for embarked operations, albeit only by day. The majority of the pilots did not have sufficient consolidated embarked day experience, nor was there sufficient time available, to progress to night flying. However, the embarked US Marine Corps squadron demonstrated a flexibility and enthusiasm for, and were culturally wedded to, the concept of supporting whichever capability or Command required it, and thus contributed to all roles of maritime and air warfare for which their radar-equipped AV-8Bs were suitable. Bold Step demonstrated that generating an interoperable capability whereby one nation’s aircraft could operate from another nation’s carrier was feasible, if approached in a safe manner and controlled by subject matter experts with decades of corporate experience. That is, Bold Step demonstrated that a sea-based equivalent to the close cooperation developed by NATO and other coalition forces operating from land bases such as Incirlik, Turkey, and Gioia del Colle, Italy, could be attained.

The experience of Bold Step emphasised that maintaining the capability to operate at sea also confers the ability to operate from a land base. The alternative, generating a sea-based capability from a land-based force, even one with a latent maritime expeditionary capability such as the US Marines, requires significantly longer. Many of the Marine pilots who embarked on Illustrious for Bold Step were operational from land but only achieved a very basic daytime capability from the carrier in the two-and-a-half week deployment, and would require months to obtain the necessary experience to progress to a safe level of proficiency in night flying. This is instructive with regard to planning for sea-based deployments of Joint Force Lightning. In order to attain an effective and credible carrier-based capability, a sufficient number of F-35Bs will have to be routinely embarked on HMS Queen Elizabeth or Prince of Wales for sustained periods to ensure that there is a cadre of pilots (and supporting personnel) who are proficient in carrier operations by day and night and critically, also possess the mind-set of sea-going aviators.

This prompts the question: what is a sufficient number of embarked aircraft? The UK currently has a stated requirement for 48 F-35Bs, sufficient to equip four squadrons. Following the SDSR, there was a debate within the Ministry of Defence concerning the size and duration of F-35 embarkations on the Queen Elizabeth-class. The Royal Navy advocated routine squadron-strength deployments (numbering 12 aircraft) for extended periods; in contrast, the Royal Air Force advocated smaller detachments of four to six aircraft for short durations. An argument in support of shorter embarked periods centres on the evolving technological context, for example, the impact of simulation, thereby changing the requirement for working-up at sea, and that the most challenging aspect of air operations is in-the-air integration; that is, operating the aircraft proficiently and within a complex battlespace. The main area for focus, rather than being the aircrew, should be the on-deck maintainers and command and control.Under original Joint Force Harrier planning, out of three squadrons, one was intended to be at high-readiness and principally carrier-based; the second would be embarked half the time; and the third squadron was to be mainly shore-based. It also warrants mention in this regard that policy-makers could not expect in a crisis to order an extra 24 aircraft (to make use of the Queen Elizabeth-class capacity to operate 36 fixed-wing aircraft) out to the carrier and assume that those aircraft could be employed effectively in short order unless their pilots – and the support personnel on the ship – are well-versed in carrier operations and this is only achieved through regular and sustained embarkation.

Joint Force Lightning

A key driver in the creation of Joint Force 2000, the original title given to Joint Force Harrier, was the realisation by the RAF that, in order to acquire a fifth generation aircraft, it would have to agree with the Royal Navy on a force that could deploy from land and sea. This was due to, effectively, the UK being capable of only affording one fleet of such aircraft: Joint Force Lightning is intended to provide an interoperable joint force of fifth generation strike fighters equally capable of operating from land or sea. Joint Force Harrier (JFH) was intended to provide the prototype of this capability, however, the experience of that Force was less than satisfactory, mainly due to problems in integrating Royal Navy and RAF personnel on-board carriers, reluctance on the part of the RAF toward embarked operations and the focus on land-based operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Although JFH was intended to be a joint force and produce interoperable land and sea-based squadrons, embarked RAF activity was infrequent and small-scale. The most notable joint deployment being the 2005 Marstrike 05 exercise that saw the deployment of eight RAF Harrier GR7s from IV Squadron deploy aboard HMS Invincible, alongside seven Sea Harrier FA2s of 801 Naval Air Squadron. Following the retirement in 2006 of the Royal Navy’s Sea Harrier FA2, embarked activity dropped significantly (in part due to the demands of operations in Iraq and Afghanistan), impacting the training and number of night-qualified pilots as well as flight deck safety, efficiency and the carriers’ war-fighting potential. Further, between 2003 and 2007, the Fleet Air Arm lost influence within JFH. At the time of the Sea Harrier retirement, 50 per cent of pilots were night capable: at the time of the withdrawal of the Harrier GR9, only four to five per cent of pilots were night-capable and they were mostly former Sea Harrier pilots. This reduction in capability can be attributed to the decline in embarked activity, as illustrated by Exercise Hajjar Osprey (March/April 2008), where only four Harriers were embarked on Illustrious for a period of approximately three weeks. Moreover, a lack of embarked activity would have a detrimental effect not only on the operational capability of the pilots but also on the wider ship-air interface with a concomitant effect on military credibility and political utility.

The experience of JFH may prompt concern that Joint Force Lightning will be similarly constrained. However, the prospects for Joint Force Lightning are positive; the RAF has accepted split ownership of the F-35 force and the creation of an expeditionary training unit at RAF Leeming (a recommendation emanating from experience in Operation Ellamy) has resulted in the RAF and Royal Navy (along with the Army) working together in a genuine tri-service context. Moreover, in contrast to the JFH period, where the Harrier was one of three fast jets in British service alongside the Tornado and Typhoon, and a target of rationalisation initiatives, the F-35 will be the ‘flagship’ fast jet in service and thus a core asset for both the Royal Navy and RAF. This should perhaps ensure that Joint Force Lightning is seen to succeed. It also warrants highlighting that Joint Force Lightning offers significant opportunities. This is especially with regard to the potential for the Fleet Air Arm to act as a bridge between the Royal Navy and RAF, and facilitate cross-pollination, including through exchange tours, via exposure to and immersion in the respective service cultures. This would address a lesson emanating from JFH experience where friction between the respective Royal Navy and RAF cultures was problematic on occasions. It would also serve as a valuable conduit for the development of a cross-domain capability that can facilitate a more flexible and agile military posture. This would include the potential utilisation of sea-basing by appropriately trained and equipped (that is, platforms capable of operating in the maritime environment) Army Air Corps and RAF assets, for example, in order to stage into a theatre or to support Special Forces. Moreover, such an approach would be consistent with the aims of Carrier Enabled Power Projection and highlight the broader utility of the Queen Elizabeth-class aircraft carriers beyond their primary role of carrier strike.

Carrier Enabled Power Projection

The shift from Carrier Strike to Carrier Enabled Power Projection in 2010 was reflective of enduring tensions in the Ministry of Defence over the Queen Elizabeth-class programme. By the time of the SDSR in 2010, the carrier programme enjoyed little support in the Ministry of Defence outside the Royal Navy and was under intense pressure financially. Further, despite its significant contribution, the role of US carrier airpower in supporting operations in Afghanistan was ignored. This context necessitated a shift in emphasis during the SDSR from highlighting the Carrier Strike role to emphasising the wider roles and flexibility of the Queen Elizabeth-class, in particular with regard to operating helicopters and providing support to amphibious operations.

Carrier Enabled Power Projection seeks to deliver a broader, more flexible spectrum of capability than a traditional carrier-operating concept. That is, in addition to being capable of delivering a carrier strike capability with up to 36 F-35s, CEPP calls for the Queen Elizabeth-class to also be capable of delivering options such as an all-helicopter air-group (potentially up to around 40 helicopters), or a mixed air-group comprising both fixed-wing aircraft and multiple rotary-wing types (up to 12 Merlin, a small number of Chinook and up to eight Apache helicopters alongside 12 F-35s). It warrants emphasising that the flexibility of the Queen Elizabeth-class is derived from the size of the vessels and the expansive flight deck such size confers: the size of the carriers was originally determined by the required weight of offensive airpower, calculated to be 36 fast jets undertaking two sorties per day for five consecutive days, to provide a medium-scale air capability. In essence, CEPP seeks to provide a capability more akin to that of an LHD, such as the US Wasp-class, rather than a conventional aircraft carrier.

CEPP constitutes a new and unprecedented approach to carrier airpower and in this respect, entails some additional risk. This is especially with regard to the intention to provide a hybrid carrier strike/littoral manoeuvre capability via a mixed air-group, and the integration of Army and Royal Air Force assets into embarked operations. Operating a ‘mixed deck’, that is, a combination of fixed and rotary-wing aircraft, imposes operational and safety limitations that result in inefficiencies not associated with a deck dedicated solely to fixed-wing operations. The successful integration of Army and Royal Air Force assets into embarked operations places an even greater emphasis on having a worked-up and proficient ship-air interface encompassing deep maritime experience and expertise. This is in order to facilitate the smooth integration of visiting units into the maritime domain and enable joint maritime-based operations. This is highlighted with reference to JFH experience. In 2008/9, in the context of a Royal Navy-RAF dispute concerning the future of the Harrier force, Major General (now Lieutenant General Sir) Paul Newton, then head of the MoD’s Development, Concepts and Doctrine Centre, was tasked to produce a report examining the size of JFH, its ethos and manning. The RAF contended that no Royal Navy input was necessary; the Royal Navy disagreed on two points: first, that there was no precedent anywhere for naval air operations that were not supervised by those with deep maritime knowledge; and second, that the RAF had consistently shown a determination to avoid going to sea. The Newton Report reemphasised the need for a sizeable portion of Joint Force Harrier to be naval, identified nearly 200 posts on the in-service Invincible-class that required naval experience and concluded that only the Royal Navy could produce the manpower to operate the Queen Elizabeth-class.

The adoption of CEPP can perhaps be viewed in one of two ways. It could be perceived as an attempt to package an overall reduction in capability (namely, a much-reduced fixed-wing capability and the combining of previously separate carrier strike and littoral manoeuvre roles) in a positive light. Alternatively, it could be viewed as an opportunity to develop a broader, more flexible package of capability and maximise the return from the significant investment in building the Queen Elizabeth-class. In this respect, the intention to develop a hybrid carrier strike/littoral manoeuvre capability could be seen as a means to build a force package akin to the Aviation Combat Element of a USMC Marine Air-Ground Task Force. However, to what extent will it be possible for the Royal Navy, with the support of the Army and Royal Air Force, to deliver the three distinct roles (carrier strike, littoral manoeuvre, and hybrid carrier strike/littoral manoeuvre) proficiently? In this respect, the decision to operate both Queen Elizabeth-class carriers will ensure that a ship is always available for operational use and for training and carrier qualification.

The importance of training and sustained periods of embarkation has been emphasised throughout this article; it also warrants highlighting that the training requirement extends to the integration of the ship and its air-group into wider task group operations. A carrier does not operate in isolation: it is one component of a task group that will include escort vessels (for example, a Daring-class destroyer and frigates), auxiliary ships, potentially a nuclear-powered submarine and allied assets. Moreover, the carrier task group may be operating in a wider coalition context and thus have to be integrated into, for example, the planning of the Joint Force Air Component Commander. The integration of the carrier and its embarked air assets – whether principally fixed-wing, all rotary-wing or a mix thereof – into a task group and subsequently into national and coalition operations will require extensive and sustained working-up to ensure operational proficiency, in particular in areas such as command and control. This will be especially with regard to cases where the carrier is operating across roles, undertaking, for example, concurrently carrier strike and littoral manoeuvre where command and control arrangements and expertise differs.

Conclusion

The purpose of this article has been to highlight the challenges and opportunities ahead as the UK works to regenerate its carrier airpower. In particular, the preceding analysis has sought to emphasise that, in order to generate a credible sea-based aviation capability, a sustained investment in extensive and intensive at-sea training is required to ensure that the ship, deck crew and air-group are worked-up and proficient at operating in and from the maritime domain and alongside national and coalition assets. It also warrants highlighting that British and international experiences points to the need for the air-group to be regularly embarked and in sufficient numbers to develop operational proficiency. Moreover, as the experience of Bold Step demonstrates, even a force with a latent maritime expeditionary capability, in this case, the USMC, would require a significant period of working-up at sea in order to attain a safe level of proficiency in night flying. In contrast, a force that was first and foremost sea-going and suitably proficient in operations by day and night would also be inherently capable of operating from land. This is significant and directly relevant to planning for Joint Force Lightning, which if it is to deliver an interoperable land and sea-based capability, must include a significant component that is principally carrier-based and equipped with the cultural mind-set of sea-going aviators.

The requirement for a core of deep maritime knowledge is also central to the effective implementation of the Carrier Enabled Power Projection approach. As discussed, CEPP seeks to provide a broader, more flexible package of capabilities than a traditional aircraft carrier capability. However, the integration of, for example, Army Air Corps Apache attack helicopters, into embarked operations will be contingent on the existence of a worked-up and proficient ship-air interface. This is not unprecedented: RAF Harrier GR3s of No. 1 Squadron were incorporated into the air-group of HMS Hermes during the Falklands campaign and made an important contribution to operations to retake the islands (albeit noting that the Harriers only operated by day). This was due to the presence of ‘domain experts’ who were able to facilitate the smooth integration of the RAF Harriers into an unfamiliar operating environment. In this regard, CEPP could potentially facilitate the development of a cross-domain capability for UK expeditionary airpower by providing a framework in which Royal Navy, Army and RAF aviators can operate closely, with the Fleet Air Arm providing a bridge between the respective services (as discussed above with regard to Joint Force Lightning). By providing the necessary domain expertise, the Fleet Air Arm can in conjunction with the Army and RAF enable a more agile approach to expeditionary air operations, thus permitting the use of carrier-basing for Army and RAF assets, thereby enhancing the flexibility and agility of UK airpower. Moreover, this would fulfil the original rationale for the Queen Elizabeth-class aircraft carriers, that is, joint defence assets capable of operating a wide range of air systems and exploiting the tactical, operational and strategic benefits of carrier airpower.


Enlace: http://www.defenceiq.com/air-forces-and-military-aircraft/articles/regenerating-uk-carrier-airpower-the-challenges-an/?utm_source=1-6361871014&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=14+11+06+DFIQ+NL&utm_term=DFIQ&utm_content=DFIQ&mac=DFIQ1-35OZKW9&disc=

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Re: Exclusive interview with Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier programme Director

Mensaje por Von Leunam el 25/6/2015, 5:08 pm

HMS Queen Elizabeth comes to life as first engine started



Minister of State for Defence Procurement, Philip Dunne, has officially started the first of the ship’s four diesel generators in Rosyth today bringing the ship to life.

“It is a real pleasure to be back in Scotland, home of the UK’s shipbuilding industry, to witness the impressive progress that is being made on our new aircraft carriers.

Powering up the diesel generator today marks an important milestone on the journey to bring these highly versatile ships into service with our Armed Forces. They will be the largest, most capable and effective surface warships ever constructed in the UK. The build programme is supporting thousands of jobs across the country, with over 4,000 of those jobs at Rosyth and the Clyde.”



The minister also announced that BAE has been awarded a £5.5M contract to install a new Vessel Traffic Management System to assist in the controlling and monitoring of ship movements within Portsmouth Harbour to prepare for the arrival of the vessel around the end of 2016, not 2015 as previously claimed by Penny Morduant MP.



The 70,600 tonne supercarrier has undergone significant preparation by the Aircraft Carrier Alliance to get it ready to start the first of her diesel engines.

The vessels feature a CODLAG (combined Diesel-Electric and Gas Turbine propulsion) arrangement and host two MT-30 Rolls Royce turbines, four Wartsila diesel generators and one Wartsila 2MW emergency diesel generator set. Each of the MT-30’s generate 36 MW (the Falkland Islands only consume 16MW!). Both gas marine turbines will provide the power for propulsion, weapons, sensors, command systems and the lower voltage requirements of the ship. The four Wartsila 38 marine diesel engines will generate 11.6 MW each. The vessels will have a total installed power approaching 110MW, enough to power a medium sized town.

Following sea trials in 2017 and flying trials for helicopters and the F-35B in 2018, HMS Queen Elizabeth will undertake a build up towards achieving an Initial Carrier Strike Capability in 2020.

https://ukdefencejournal.org.uk/hms-queen-elizabeth-comes-to-life-as-first-engine-started/

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Re: Exclusive interview with Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier programme Director

Mensaje por Takeda el 15/12/2015, 10:45 am

Un videíto:


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Re: Exclusive interview with Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier programme Director

Mensaje por Von Leunam el 4/11/2016, 1:53 pm


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Re: Exclusive interview with Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier programme Director

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