Skip to comments.Building the world's most advanced ships was never going to be plain sailing
Posted on 03/21/2012 7:41:16 AM PDT by sukhoi-30mki
Building the world's most advanced ships was never going to be plain sailing
Its news to reassure anyone who's worried that the sovereignty of the people and penguins of Port Stanley has been put at risk by government defence cuts.
Defence sources have told the Evening Standard newspaper that Britains two new Queen Elizabeth class carriers currently under construction are unnecessarily large for the needs of the Royal Navy.
'Unnecessarily large': An artist's impression of a Queen Elizabeth class aircraft carrier, two of which are under construction for the Royal Navy
There is even the suggestion that the decision to go for vast new vessels could have been due to a desire to outdo the French.
If reading that awakened jingoistic stirrings in your breast, I regret they will be short-lived. This is a programme beset by embarrassing, costly, and well-publicised setbacks. As a result the Royal Navy has been left woefully under-equipped in comparison to the old foe of Trafalgar.
Retired: The decommissioning of HMS Ark Royal (pictured) has left the navy without a working aircraft carrier
In retiring HMS Ark Royal, and converting HMS Illustrious to a helicopter platform, the Strategic Defence and Security review left Britain without an aircraft carrier capability. Delays to the new carriers have pushed their launch date back to 2018 at the earliest.
But problems have dogged the aircraft intended to fly from the carriers as much as the ships themselves. The MoD originally intended to purchase the jump jet (F35-B) variant of the Lockheed Martin Joint Strike Fighter, but under the Strategic Defence and Security Review it was decided that the second carrier, HMS Prince of Wales, would instead be fitted with catapults and arrestor wires designed to launch the
(Excerpt) Read more at dailymail.co.uk ...
Sadly, the Brits are coming to the realization that cradle-to-grave socialism and a robust ‘defence’ posture are incompatible. They basically gutted the RN’s budget to build these two carriers, and now .....
Sad, Larry, just sad.
“Unnecessary” until they need them.
“These 650,000-ton, 280 metre-long behemoths are of a complexity and size never attempted (the US Nimitz class carriers are larger, but certainly less advanced).
I worked on designing the new Brit carriers in 2003. I am here to tell you, the Nimitz carriers outclass them by a mile, and the Ford class will be coming online well before HMS Queen Elizabeth is launched. And unless I miss my guess, they are 65,000 ton ships. The Nimitz class is 90,000 tons.
Yes, long term in a democratic country socialism is tough to reconcile with a strong defense just as the UK is coming to the realization you can either be a Christian country or one the promotes sodomy...you cannot be both.
It was Mark Steyn that predicted, when the Defence Secretary position was only a steppingstone to the Healthcare Secretary position, then a nation had truly turned the corner. This happened in the UK in the 1950s. It is not a recent event.
All the formerly great nations of Europe are such. None of them has a military worth a d-mn and they therefore cannot fight to save their lives. All those great former traditions of the Norwegians, Germans, French.
It's also hilarious to think that these transformations to socialist utopia was underwritten by the USA. All belonged to NATO but 90% of the expense was paid for by the USA. All the while the liberals in western European nations were busy passing laws to promote their little socialist lands.
What a load of crap the Nimitz own the little british carriers, and the newer boats Gerald ford etc will continue the trend.
Typical RN arrogance.
I wish the US would start coming to the same realisation.
Daily Mail journo ignorance more like...
They thought carriers were unnecessary back in 1982 when they were ready to decommission the Hermes, and the first of the new Invincible class was just coming into the fleet and was already being proposed for sale to Australia.
Then the Falklands War came along and the UK canceled the plans to decommission the Hermes and rushed the Invincible into service. It is doubtful the UK could have taken back those islands without those carriers.
As it was the UK suffered severe naval losses in terms of dstroyers, firgates, and support vessels sunk in winning those Ilsands.
The Hermes went on to serve with the Royal Navy until 1986 when she was sold to India as two more Invincible class carriers came online for the UK.
Those three small, jump-jet carriers have served well and ably ever since.
Now, the UK is reliving history.
They have decommissioned two of the Invincible class already and taken all of the naval Sea Harriers out of service. They refit the sole remaining carrier, the Illustrious, into a helo-carrier and amphibious assault ship.
They are building two new large conventional carriers, but the first, the Queen Elizabeth will come out in 2016 with no catapaults or arrestors and no aircraft and also be turned immediately into a huge amphibious assault and helo carrier.
The second, the Prince of Wales will come out in 2018 with cats, arrestors, and a squadron of F-35Cs ready for that carrier by 2020. So, until 2020, the UK has no capable aircraft carriers. That’s an 8 year window for adversaries to try and conduct mischief...and Argentina is beatig the war drums again...though they are in even worse shape, and, the UK has stationed sufficient troops, modern aircraft (Typhoons) on the island, and warships around the island (a Offshore Patrol vessel, a destroyer, and a nuclear attck sub) to keep any repeat of 1982 from happening.
Once the Prince of Wales has its aircraft, the Queen Elizabeth will go into refit to add the catapaults and arrestors and then she will re-enter service in 2022-2023. At that point the UK will have two capable carriers and through the use of maintenance layovers and refits through their life, will always have one large and veru capable fixed wing aircraft carrier available for use with a couple of squadrons of F-35Cs.
Sad how protracted and wierd their procurement, building, and induction into the fleet has become...but it is due to the liberal mind set of their government and the socialistic nature of their nation which has reduced defense spending to the point that they have such a debacle.
World-Wide Aircraft Carriers - Queen Elizabeth Class
...and will remain tht way throughout their entire service life of well over 50 years.
Here's the QE Class, circa 2021:
And here's the Ford Class, circa, 2015-2016:
With their electro-magnetic catapaults, with the two new reactors delivering 200% of the power on the Nimitz class, with her air wing of Super Hornets and Joint Strike Fighters, with her capability to install Laser CIWS and rail-gun technology (probably before 2025 for the CIWS), and with her capability for upgrade and addition of new technologies, they will be the King of the Seas (particularly as protected with AEGIS vessels and Virginia Class SSNs) for decades and decades to come.
I’m not sure what, if anything, the Brits and French will end up building for aircraft carriers, but I am very confident that the monicker “World’s most advanced ships.” will not apply.
I think you are confusing advancedment with size.
You may be correct that the upcoming US ships will be the most advanced, but for a while it may the UK ships. They may be smaller than the Nimitz class, but we are talking ability and technological advancement, not size.
Besides, this is newspaper hype. Hardly the RN’s fault.
I hope the UK are not in that ‘not worth a damn list’.
1—At 65000 tons, they are hardly tiny.
2—As I said, this is about technological ability, not size.
Building plastic models can be time consuming, let alone huffing the fumes from all that glue and paint, but try and keep up.
Is it arrogance when America says it has the biggest and best ships on earth, or is it only when another country does it?. Is America the only nation allowed to be the best in the world at something?. Why is it ‘arrogant’ for someone else to say ‘we have the best’?.
Lets assume the UK builds a 100000 on ships, and one better than anything America, China, Russia etc can build. Is it arrogance to then say its the best?. HMS Daring has been called the most advanced ship in the world. If true, is that Limey arrogance?. Or just a simple fact?.
You cannot so arrogant to think that if something is American, that automatically makes it the best. You seem to have a problem with another country challenging your perception of the USN ships as top dog.
So the UK stating the abilities of its news ships is simply arrogance and boasting to you.
I have kept up, and read all about the potnetial for shifting back to the F-35B, and the talk is that they "may" revert, or that at some future dsate thay "will" revert back to the F-35B...but they have not offically announced doing so to date, unless you have a link to the official announcement that I am unaware of.
I have close friends in the UK in shipbuilding and they inform me it is not a done deal. They have already spent a lot of money making the changes for the last decision, and changing back will just delay things further and add more costs.
So, until they do officially announce this, I will keep the actual official announcement of going with the F-35C as part of my dialog and documentation.
Should they reverse course again, I will update my site and dialog accordingly.
But your carriers aren’t the most advanced and nothing you all have is even as advanced as our current super carriers -Nimitz. Those are just facts friend no need to get mad.
“Besides, this is newspaper hype. Hardly the RNs fault.”
I agree with you there.
I agree as well the reporter wrote 650,000 tons, lol that would be a monster.
I would not call it arrogance on either side, really.
The US Nimitz class na d the Ford class even more so, in every conceivable measure out class the new UK carriers.
This does not mean that the new UK carriers are “bad”. In fact they are going to be very good if the UK government ever gets it’s head out of its backside over this and just lets them be finished to the best standard possible. They are going to be very effective vessels and far better than what the UK had in the Invincibles and as good as or better than the French nuclear carrier, or the Russian Kuznetsov, or the Chinese new Carrier...but in this time frame it is likely that the PLAN will have their own indegenous carrier so we will have to wait and see what that holds.
As to the Daring, it is another very, very good vessel. Again, due to the UK governments dragging its feet, the vessels are not being launched or even commissioned with their full set of capabilities...ie. the full ASW suite or Anti-surface capabilities.
I believe it is arguable that the latest AEGIS system upgrades aboard the Burkes are as good as or better than the new system on the Darings. I believe the coming upgrades will eclipse the Daring capability in the AAW areana, and already meet or exceed them in certain areas.
Given the Burkes full capabilities in ASW and ASuW, I’d still overall class them better. not because they are US per sey, but just because of the technical capabilities.
But the Darings are very, very good, and a great compliment to the new carriers. I just wish the UK would build at least 12-16 of themn instead of the current number.
See my two site:
World-wide Aircraft Carriers
AEGIS AND AEGIS-LIKE VESSELS OF THE WORLD
And Compare the specs of each to one another.
Anyhow, cheers to you and the UK. We’re happy...and glad to have you as loyal, capable, and long-time allies. Our capabilities on the high seas compliment one another immensely...and I hope the draw down and indecision and confusion resulting from pols over-reach ceases and the Royal Navy gains back her luster and full capabilites.
...and with the new naval “sodomy is perfectly natural” training being implemented the “King of the Seas” will no doubt have many “Queens of the Seas” aboard and ready for action. Mike Mullen and Admiral Rough-Head will be proud!
Apart from the cost of purchase and installation of catapult and arresting gear is the manpower bill. On a US CVN the crews operating this equipment number around 200-250. I would bet that this figures prominently in the ongoing debate at the MoD.
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They have no need for the power project capability of a real Carrier.
I would MUCH rather see them with 5 Heavy Cruisers, 15 Aegis Destroyers, 25 Light, modern Frigates and 20 subs...10 nukes and 10 of the new, advanced diesels.
Plus their 3-4 Boomers.
It's time for them to let go.
If France and Germany would take the same approach we would have civilized partners on the seas.
The Falklands showed that they need a capability to project power and still need the carriers. Two of these will be adequate, though three would be a better number for always having one opn station and being able to surge two when necessary.
What they really need is to shed the rediculus liberal politicians and mentality that has infected them.
They still have significant foreign interests and the sea lanes are absolutely necessary for their survival as a nation. And they cannot expect, nor can we, that those cases (like the Falklands) that we would step in and send our carriers to do their job.
So, a couple of carriers is well within their capabilities if they just get their head straight.
Their Daring class are the near equivalent of our AEGIS DDGs. Their Astute SSN is an excellent boat which is being built to replace their Trafalga class which were also very good. Sort of like the Virginias replacing the LA Class Flight III boats.
Their new Frigates will also be excellent vessels and will serve very adequately if they simply build enough of them.
With that force (adding the Ocean and other Amphibs that they have) they will remain a very capable ally to us should the baloons go up in such a manner where we need to have allied battle groups that can work together in a larger war.
"I hope the UK are not in that not worth a damn list."
I was perhaps a bit hasty with my words. The UK is our partner and their troops as fearless as ever, but your military has shrunk so as to be almost unrecognizable. Could the UK sustain a long way against a determined enemy?
As for the other countries with formerly great military reputations -- Norway, Germany, France -- I expect that all the men in their armed forces have been so emasculated that they would surrender before firing a shot.
Kinda reminds me of that old joke from World War II: "How do you spot a French rifle? Never been fired and only dropped once."