Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Contains threads on Royal Navy equipment of the past, present and future.
Scimitar54
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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Post by Scimitar54 »

Building just two CVF’s was always going to be a STRATEGIC BLUNDER of the greatest magnitude.
Did those responsible not pause to consider why 3 x Invincible class were deemed necessary (apart from just the over simplistic theoretical increase in individual platform capability)?

Obviously this view has proliferated and has continued to be applied, with consequent dire effects on our ability to defend ourselves. Peacetime capabilities are different from conflict deterrence.

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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Post by SW1 »

There has been attempts by the RN and there favourite commentators to underplay issues around these ships, see what happened when they flooded the PoW as an example. So let’s reserve judgement to see what comes out the root cause analysis for how big an issue this is or not
Poiuytrewq wrote: 04 Feb 2024, 10:59
bobp wrote: 03 Feb 2024, 21:59 Good job PWLS is serviceable, They will have to transfer stores etc I guess.
This highlights the weakness in only having 2 carriers.

Whilst a 3rd CVF may be unobtainable, another F35 capable flattop is essential IMO.

As soon as QE has a major refit the lack of a 3rd flattop will become obvious to all. It’s strategically unsustainable but no one in the MoD appears to have the courage to admit that at the moment.
We could have build 4 vessels similar to the Italian cavour and crewed 3 of them with what we have spend and allocated crew to the cvf program or built 6 Canberra class and crewed 5. We made our bed.

It’s won’t be strategically unsustainable because as has been shown and for all the bluster and PR spin these things remain a niche capability within uk armed forces not a vital one.

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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Post by Ron5 »

SW1 wrote: 04 Feb 2024, 11:30 There has been attempts by the RN and there favourite commentators to underplay issues around these ships, see what happened when they flooded the PoW as an example. So let’s reserve judgement to see what comes out the root cause analysis for how big an issue this is or not
Just one commentator here rushed to judgement on the cause. And that one poster was you !!
SW1 wrote: 03 Feb 2024, 23:11 Nearly certain they said they checked QE after the issue with POW and nothing found. Was someone telling porkies or is there something bigger at play?

Also a good lesson in not making big PR and political puff about any single piece of equipment makes you look stupid when it breaks.
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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Post by Ron5 »

Interestingly, last night when I read about the problem on Navy Lookout, there were comments there by two people that sounded very much like sailors serving on QE that described in detail what the issue was. What's interesting is that those comments are not there this morning.

In the now deleted comments, potential SRB was highlighted.

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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Post by Ron5 »

SW1 wrote: 04 Feb 2024, 11:30 It’s won’t be strategically unsustainable because as has been shown and for all the bluster and PR spin these things remain a niche capability within uk armed forces not a vital one.
Unbelievable.
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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Post by new guy »

Ron5 wrote: 04 Feb 2024, 13:51 potential SRB was highlighted.
SRB??

From what I have heard it's a corrosion issue

SW1
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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Post by SW1 »

Ron5 wrote: 04 Feb 2024, 13:43
SW1 wrote: 04 Feb 2024, 11:30 There has been attempts by the RN and there favourite commentators to underplay issues around these ships, see what happened when they flooded the PoW as an example. So let’s reserve judgement to see what comes out the root cause analysis for how big an issue this is or not
Just one commentator here rushed to judgement on the cause. And that one poster was you !!
SW1 wrote: 03 Feb 2024, 23:11 Nearly certain they said they checked QE after the issue with POW and nothing found. Was someone telling porkies or is there something bigger at play?

Also a good lesson in not making big PR and political puff about any single piece of equipment makes you look stupid when it breaks.
Not really both those statements are fact. neither comment rush to judgement or define how serious the issue is, they ask questions maybe you don’t understand the difference and need to read what was written.

There is according to the navy an issue with a coupling that was supposedly checked after the coupling issue with pow.

Now we have rumours it’s corrosion minor issue ect ect but we’ve heard these rumours of minor issues spouted before when it wasn’t! So was it checked if it was ok how/why is there now an issue with it?

If they have to scrap a major deployment and recall another crew and attempt to scramble pow to sea in a crash program it’s clearly not minor.

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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Post by bobp »

Definitely not minor, to replace a coupling even if it is just corrosion damage is a big job.

Scimitar54
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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Post by Scimitar54 »

Kind of reminds me of the MB ejection seat issue a few years ago, where all but essential flying was stopped until the cause had been identified and rectified. :lol:

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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

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Tempest414
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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Post by Tempest414 »

Well at least QNLZ has made close to her first major refit even if she has to go in a little early means we will have to push on with Bulwark to get her out

bobp
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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Post by bobp »

So we now know it was an underwater coupling that was corroded, but only on the starboard side, but not on the port. Is there a material difference in construction that caused it to corrode or some other cause such as stray electrical currents ?

Max Jones
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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Post by Max Jones »

SW1 wrote: 04 Feb 2024, 11:30
We could have build 4 vessels similar to the Italian cavour and crewed 3 of them with what we have spend and allocated crew to the cvf program or built 6 Canberra class and crewed 5. We made our bed.
A larger number of smaller carriers would never have been practical. You have more carriers in service and available for use, but I don’t think there are any other advantages.

How are you going to provide escorts for 2-3x as many carriers? Shrink the escort force to a single warship for each? There certainly wouldn’t be enough auxiliary vessels for multiple CSGs.

It also means more crew overall and the smaller decks will generally mean far less capability per carrier. Granted air wings have been small so far but after the helicopter package you only leave space for a single squadron of F-35Bs so you essentially end up with ASW carriers again that only have the capability for air defence of their own group and no strike capability (unless against a largely defenceless enemy). Even when the QE class are operating with fewer aircraft they benefit from far more hangar and deck space.
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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Post by SW1 »

Max Jones wrote: 05 Feb 2024, 11:19
SW1 wrote: 04 Feb 2024, 11:30
We could have build 4 vessels similar to the Italian cavour and crewed 3 of them with what we have spend and allocated crew to the cvf program or built 6 Canberra class and crewed 5. We made our bed.
A larger number of smaller carriers would never have been practical. You have more carriers in service and available for use, but I don’t think there are any other advantages.

How are you going to provide escorts for 2-3x as many carriers? Shrink the escort force to a single warship for each? There certainly wouldn’t be enough auxiliary vessels for multiple CSGs.

It also means more crew overall and the smaller decks will generally mean far less capability per carrier. Granted air wings have been small so far but after the helicopter package you only leave space for a single squadron of F-35Bs so you essentially end up with ASW carriers again that only have the capability for air defence of their own group and no strike capability (unless against a largely defenceless enemy). Even when the QE class are operating with fewer aircraft they benefit from far more hangar and deck space.
They were practical up until early 2010s when they had ocean, illustrious and ark royal at the end.

If you had 4 smaller ships each with a crew around 450 you have roughly the same as that being consumed by the 2 we currently have. If you had ocean type LHA capabilities as well like Cavour you would have had much more flexibility and could have been paired with say a bay and the lpds could have been sold. Adding 2 to 3 escorts per group much like the US amphibious strikes groups gives you 12 total (we still have that many I think). The entire group can work up as a group through the cycle as there would now be four groups.

They have banged on about being a task group navy not a singleton deployment navy so would have least allowed some semblance of force structure and planning being consistent it allows us to be a bit more dispersed and flexible while not having all eggs in one big basket.

there is only 2 f35 squadrons unlikely to be many more we are only a 8 squadron fast jet force as a nation and even at that those squadron have serious pinch point issues within them.

We don’t need anything more than what was the asw carrier style operations. A routine air group of say 4 F35 and 4 asw merlin 2 green Merlin and 2 wildcat would have been enough for our needs.

All water under the bridge now and the resultant mess is there for all to see.

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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Post by Ron5 »

SW1 wrote: 05 Feb 2024, 11:59
Max Jones wrote: 05 Feb 2024, 11:19
SW1 wrote: 04 Feb 2024, 11:30
We could have build 4 vessels similar to the Italian cavour and crewed 3 of them with what we have spend and allocated crew to the cvf program or built 6 Canberra class and crewed 5. We made our bed.
A larger number of smaller carriers would never have been practical. You have more carriers in service and available for use, but I don’t think there are any other advantages.

How are you going to provide escorts for 2-3x as many carriers? Shrink the escort force to a single warship for each? There certainly wouldn’t be enough auxiliary vessels for multiple CSGs.

It also means more crew overall and the smaller decks will generally mean far less capability per carrier. Granted air wings have been small so far but after the helicopter package you only leave space for a single squadron of F-35Bs so you essentially end up with ASW carriers again that only have the capability for air defence of their own group and no strike capability (unless against a largely defenceless enemy). Even when the QE class are operating with fewer aircraft they benefit from far more hangar and deck space.
They were practical up until early 2010s when they had ocean, illustrious and ark royal at the end.

If you had 4 smaller ships each with a crew around 450 you have roughly the same as that being consumed by the 2 we currently have. If you had ocean type LHA capabilities as well like Cavour you would have had much more flexibility and could have been paired with say a bay and the lpds could have been sold. Adding 2 to 3 escorts per group much like the US amphibious strikes groups gives you 12 total (we still have that many I think). The entire group can work up as a group through the cycle as there would now be four groups.

They have banged on about being a task group navy not a singleton deployment navy so would have least allowed some semblance of force structure and planning being consistent it allows us to be a bit more dispersed and flexible while not having all eggs in one big basket.

there is only 2 f35 squadrons unlikely to be many more we are only a 8 squadron fast jet force as a nation and even at that those squadron have serious pinch point issues within them.

We don’t need anything more than what was the asw carrier style operations. A routine air group of say 4 F35 and 4 asw merlin 2 green Merlin and 2 wildcat would have been enough for our needs.

All water under the bridge now and the resultant mess is there for all to see.
Max, you are wasting your time. @SW1 is ex RAF and has a traditional RAF dislike of aircraft carriers. He trots out volumes of debunked and discarded arguments that make little sense to anyone outside the RAF. Sad.

Here he's arguing for 4 small carriers with 4 fast jets on each. If that had been implemented, I am 100% sure he would have argued they should be scrapped as having too small an airgroup to be useful. Just like the RAF argued for the scrapping of Sea Harriers, then all Harriers, then the Invincibles.
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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Post by Ron5 »

new guy wrote: 04 Feb 2024, 13:58
Ron5 wrote: 04 Feb 2024, 13:51 potential SRB was highlighted.
SRB??

From what I have heard it's a corrosion issue
The way it was explained in the now deleted comments on Navy Lookout, was that some time ago a routine pre-deployment underwater inspection revealed that a cover (fiber glass) on one of the couplings was not seated correctly and seawater had entered the coupling. Maybe the cover had not been reattached correctly after the earlier inspections done as a result of the POW problems. The divers removed the cover and visually inspected underneath. Some pitting was observed but not enough for concern. So they applied the standard fix of painting the corroded parts with heavy anti-corrosion paint and the cover was re-attached. So far so good.

However, since the Afghanistan Nimrod crash, new rules meant that somebody well up the food chain had to be identified as the risk owner and to sign off before the ship could sail. This person, presumably an Admiral, was finally briefed a couple of days ago and he/she pulled the plug on the grounds that a visual inspection was not sufficient to determine if there was catastrophic damage beneath the surface of the coupling e.g. done by Sulfate Reducing Bacteria (SRB).

The NL commentator added a few more inflammatory statements. One was that the coupling "only" had a 10% margin for safety and was not the standard coupling used by the Royal Navy but a new type from Voith. He speculated they were chosen on the basis of lower cost.

Please remember this was all from an anonymous poster and subject to my less than perfect memory.

It does make me think that investing in a QE capable dry dock at Portsmouth would be a great idea. Could also use it for my giant T83 trimarans!
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sol
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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Post by sol »

SW1 wrote: 05 Feb 2024, 11:59 If you had 4 smaller ships each with a crew around 450 you have roughly the same as that being consumed by the 2 we currently have.
3 smaller ships maybe ... 4 no chance. Cavour has crew of 486, compared to 679 of QE class (no counting air group personal), which means difference is less than 200. So benefits would be minimal (3) or not present at all (4) for smaller ships, while having less capable platform, with much less potential for serious modernisation.
SW1 wrote: 05 Feb 2024, 11:59 there is only 2 f35 squadrons unlikely to be many more we are only a 8 squadron fast jet force as a nation and even at that those squadron have serious pinch point issues within them.
There will be at least 3, which, not ideal, it is still enough to provide both carriers with enough planes. That would mean one could have full compliment of 24, with other at least 12, not to mention that in the time of need, 207 Squadron would probably be able to provide additional pilots and planes, just like 899 NAS did during the Falklands.
SW1 wrote: 05 Feb 2024, 11:59 We don’t need anything more than what was the asw carrier style operations. A routine air group of say 4 F35 and 4 asw merlin 2 green Merlin and 2 wildcat would have been enough for our needs.
Same thinking as before 1982 happened, but luckily HMS Hermes was still available back then. 4-6 planes was just not nearly enough to provide constant CAP and battle operations and it is basically a token force. Having usual 6 F-35B on their LHAs is not big issue for US as they always could count on support of their CVs, for the Royal Navy would be serious step down and loss of capability.
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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Post by SW1 »

sol wrote: 05 Feb 2024, 21:25
SW1 wrote: 05 Feb 2024, 11:59 If you had 4 smaller ships each with a crew around 450 you have roughly the same as that being consumed by the 2 we currently have.
3 smaller ships maybe ... 4 no chance. Cavour has crew of 486, compared to 679 of QE class (no counting air group personal), which means difference is less than 200. So benefits would be minimal (3) or not present at all (4) for smaller ships, while having less capable platform, with much less potential for serious modernisation.
SW1 wrote: 05 Feb 2024, 11:59 there is only 2 f35 squadrons unlikely to be many more we are only a 8 squadron fast jet force as a nation and even at that those squadron have serious pinch point issues within them.
There will be at least 3, which, not ideal, it is still enough to provide both carriers with enough planes. That would mean one could have full compliment of 24, with other at least 12, not to mention that in the time of need, 207 Squadron would probably be able to provide additional pilots and planes, just like 899 NAS did during the Falklands.
SW1 wrote: 05 Feb 2024, 11:59 We don’t need anything more than what was the asw carrier style operations. A routine air group of say 4 F35 and 4 asw merlin 2 green Merlin and 2 wildcat would have been enough for our needs.
Same thinking as before 1982 happened, but luckily HMS Hermes was still available back then. 4-6 planes was just not nearly enough to provide constant CAP and battle operations and it is basically a token force. Having usual 6 F-35B on their LHAs is not big issue for US as they always could count on support of their CVs, for the Royal Navy would be serious step down and loss of capability.
It’s around 750-800 crew allocated to the carrier now they upped it after trials and exercises.

I’m glad you are confident of deployable f35 numbers it will be some considerable time to anything like those numbers become available if at all. It’s a specialist capability for us that should be used sparingly.

Funny enough Cavour is roughly the same size as Hermes. We didn’t sail around with dozens of jets on carriers after the Falklands either nor will we be re fighting it.

4-6 a/c is what provides the full qra response so air defence can be meet with that number. We wouldn’t be asking them to do both missions at the same time in routine deployments and exercises. We have deployed 4 jets to areas many times for exercises and presence which is why it would be a routine commitment to a ship going to a single area. when we reinforced NATOs border after the Ukraine invasion it was with such deployments was that a token force?

You could expand this number up to say 10-14 for a major operation. We don’t have many fastjets period and only deploy them in small numbers for any extended period. We are not alone in this situation in fact many can’t deploy there fast jets at all without considerable support from others.

There would be no loss of capability or any serious step down.

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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Post by inch »

How many can France deploy on their single carrier deployment, shouldn't we be able to match them at least with our 2 carriers ? Just asking

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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Post by new guy »

SW1 wrote: 05 Feb 2024, 22:00
sol wrote: 05 Feb 2024, 21:25
SW1 wrote: 05 Feb 2024, 11:59 If you had 4 smaller ships each with a crew around 450 you have roughly the same as that being consumed by the 2 we currently have.
3 smaller ships maybe ... 4 no chance. Cavour has crew of 486, compared to 679 of QE class (no counting air group personal), which means difference is less than 200. So benefits would be minimal (3) or not present at all (4) for smaller ships, while having less capable platform, with much less potential for serious modernisation.
SW1 wrote: 05 Feb 2024, 11:59 there is only 2 f35 squadrons unlikely to be many more we are only a 8 squadron fast jet force as a nation and even at that those squadron have serious pinch point issues within them.
There will be at least 3, which, not ideal, it is still enough to provide both carriers with enough planes. That would mean one could have full compliment of 24, with other at least 12, not to mention that in the time of need, 207 Squadron would probably be able to provide additional pilots and planes, just like 899 NAS did during the Falklands.

It’s around 750-800 crew allocated to the carrier now they upped it after trials and exercises.

I’m glad you are confident of deployable f35 numbers it will be some considerable time to anything like those numbers become available if at all. It’s a specialist capability for us that should be used sparingly.

Brother, Next year we are deploying 24 British F-35B. Ignoring that, we also have 4 other allies operating or destined to operate Bravo. The extra capacity is well needed. Without batch 2 I would say we could deploy 24 semi frequently. With it, I would say we could do it frequently

It is actually around 700 crew for QEC.
Cavour is around 500.
at first you proposed 6 cavours at 3,000 vs UK 1,500.
then under complaint you lowered it to 4, still at an insulting 2,000 vs UK 1,500.

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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Post by dmereifield »

Bro, I'd love to be wrong, but I doubt we'll see 24 UK F35 on board. I'm sure we'll see 24 on her, but I expect that will include US airframes. I'd be surprised/happy if we'd only meed them to contribute 8, and we can pony up 16 of our own...

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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Post by sol »

SW1 wrote: 05 Feb 2024, 22:00 We didn’t sail around with dozens of jets on carriers after the Falklands either
Yes, but not because it was a the RN choice, isn't it, as new carriers were to small to have larger air group. But that was a minimum what they could get from government at that time, but not what they actually wanted.

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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Post by SW1 »

new guy wrote: 05 Feb 2024, 22:20
SW1 wrote: 05 Feb 2024, 22:00
sol wrote: 05 Feb 2024, 21:25
SW1 wrote: 05 Feb 2024, 11:59 If you had 4 smaller ships each with a crew around 450 you have roughly the same as that being consumed by the 2 we currently have.
3 smaller ships maybe ... 4 no chance. Cavour has crew of 486, compared to 679 of QE class (no counting air group personal), which means difference is less than 200. So benefits would be minimal (3) or not present at all (4) for smaller ships, while having less capable platform, with much less potential for serious modernisation.
SW1 wrote: 05 Feb 2024, 11:59 there is only 2 f35 squadrons unlikely to be many more we are only a 8 squadron fast jet force as a nation and even at that those squadron have serious pinch point issues within them.
There will be at least 3, which, not ideal, it is still enough to provide both carriers with enough planes. That would mean one could have full compliment of 24, with other at least 12, not to mention that in the time of need, 207 Squadron would probably be able to provide additional pilots and planes, just like 899 NAS did during the Falklands.

It’s around 750-800 crew allocated to the carrier now they upped it after trials and exercises.

I’m glad you are confident of deployable f35 numbers it will be some considerable time to anything like those numbers become available if at all. It’s a specialist capability for us that should be used sparingly.

Brother, Next year we are deploying 24 British F-35B. Ignoring that, we also have 4 other allies operating or destined to operate Bravo. The extra capacity is well needed. Without batch 2 I would say we could deploy 24 semi frequently. With it, I would say we could do it frequently

It is actually around 700 crew for QEC.
Cavour is around 500.
at first you proposed 6 cavours at 3,000 vs UK 1,500.
then under complaint you lowered it to 4, still at an insulting 2,000 vs UK 1,500.
Well I hope you’re right we will see.

I suggest you read posts not regurgitate what you think I wrote I’ll copy what I wrote here for the avoidance of doubt

“ We could have build 4 vessels similar to the Italian cavour and crewed 3 of them with what we have spend and allocated crew to the cvf program or built 6 Canberra class and crewed 5. We made our bed.”

Nothing lowered or changed under protest.

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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Post by new guy »

dmereifield wrote: 05 Feb 2024, 22:56 Bro, I'd love to be wrong, but I doubt we'll see 24 UK F35 on board. I'm sure we'll see 24 on her, but I expect that will include US airframes. I'd be surprised/happy if we'd only meed them to contribute 8, and we can pony up 16 of our own...
STDE24 will also be another step in the journey towards achieving Full Operational Capability (FOC) for UK Carrier Strike. Cdre James Blackmore, COMUKCSG, he said that following Exercise Strike Warrior in the Autumn, 24 British F-35Bs will be onboard HMS Prince of Wales for the Indo-Pacific deployment in 2025. 617 Sqn and 809 NAS will provide 12 jets each.

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Re: Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion

Post by SW1 »

sol wrote: 05 Feb 2024, 23:01
SW1 wrote: 05 Feb 2024, 22:00 We didn’t sail around with dozens of jets on carriers after the Falklands either
Yes, but not because it was a the RN choice, isn't it, as new carriers were to small to have larger air group. But that was a minimum what they could get from government at that time, but not what they actually wanted.
HMS Hermes remained in service until 1986 and there was 14 harriers on invincible in the 90s. The majority of the time if they deployed with jets at all there was 7 or less.

What they want is irrelevant. This is repeatedly the problem wants and aspirations far beyond reality.

If you want to prepare a fast jet force for peer warfare they should be spending the majority of their deployed time in Nevada at the most complex air exercise in the world not bobbing about on a boat.

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