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[*] posted on 23-5-2017 at 12:07 PM
Royal Navy 2017 onwards


HMS Diamond Shows Type 45’s Potent Firepower in High Sea Missile Test

(Source: Royal Navy; issued March 19, 2017)


HMS Diamond, a Royal Navy Type 45 destroyer, has fired a Sea Viper missile as part of its pre-deployment work-up program. The firing tested the ship’s ability to defend herself and other ships around her from air attack. (RN photo)

In a flash of fire and smoke, Type 45 destroyer HMS Diamond has tested her world-beating Sea Viper missile system off the coast of Scotland.

Blasting from the warship's silo, the missile flew four times the speed of sound before obliterating an incoming drone target designed to simulate a projectile attack on the ship.

It marks a major milestone in the intense work-up period of the 7,500-tonne warship ahead of her deployment on operations later this year, and proves the Type 45 destroyer's capability to defend herself and other ships around her from attack.

Commander Ben Keith, the Commanding Officer of HMS Diamond, said: "An explosion in the sky marked the missile destroying her target, all in all the culmination of another successful week's work for HMS Diamond. I am immensely proud of my team and the work they put in over the past few weeks to make this test firing possible.

"We have proven once again that the Type 45 destroyer is a world-beating ship when it comes to air defence and this firing gives us the utmost confidence in Diamond and her systems in advance of our deployment later this year."

Just two and a half seconds after erupting from its silo, the 450kg Aster missile had accelerated to more than four times the speed of sound - otherwise known as Mach 4.

High over the seas, the missile manoeuvred at G-forces which no human being could withstand, to close in and destroy the target.

In this case, the target was a Mirach drone heading through the skies of the Outer Hebrides at around 500mph.

VIDEO: http://youtu.be/nQaHKJZalhU
In a flash of fire and smoke, Type 45 destroyer HMS Diamond has tested her world-beating Sea Viper missile system off the coast of Scotland. (Royal Navy video)

Sea Viper is the combination of the Sampson radar system - the distinctive spinning spiked ball on top of a Type 45 destroyer's main mast - and the Aster missile system in a silo on the forecastle.

The system tracks aircraft and other objects across thousands of cubic miles of airspace, identifies threats, and destroys them when necessary.

The successful missile firing was the final tick in the box for HMS Diamond's training package and marks the end of a busy few months for the ship and the men and women on board.

She will now return to Portsmouth for a final period of preparations before deploying later this year.

Diamond’s sister ship HMS Daring returned home to Portsmouth last week after a nine-month deployment to the Middle East protecting some of the world’s most vital shipping lanes. During her time away, Daring visited 12 countries, steamed 50,000 miles and undertook 20 patrols of the Bab-al-Mandeb strait to reassure merchant vessels and keep the sea lanes open for trade.

-ends-
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[*] posted on 24-5-2017 at 11:37 AM


UDT Europe: Audacious prepares for sea trials

23rd May 2017 - 18:13

by Alice Budge in London



Audacious, the fourth of seven Astute class attack submarines being built for the Royal Navy, was launched in April by BAE Systems and is now being prepared for sea trials.

The 97m long, 7,400 tonne nuclear powered submarine was lowered into the dock water for the first time at the company's site in Barrow-in-Furness, Cumbria, marking the next phase of its test and commission programme ahead of sea trials in 2018.

Will Blamey, BAE Systems submarines managing director, said that the launch marked ‘an important milestone in the Astute programme’ and that Audacious entered the water ‘in a more advanced state of build than any previous Astute class submarine’.

Blamey went on to comment that BAE ‘looks forward to working alongside Audacious’ crew to prepare her for sea trials, before she joins her sister submarines in service with the Royal Navy.

According to assistant chief of naval staff submarines, Rear Admiral John Weale, the £1.2 billion attack submarine ‘will go on to serve on operations right around the world, helping keep Britain safe’.

The first three submarines in the Astute class, HMS Astute, HMS Ambush and HMS Artful are already in service with the final three at various stages of construction and testing.

In April, the Ministry of Defence announced it had negotiated a new £1.4 billion contract with BAE for Agamemnon, the sixth Astute class submarine.

However, the new contract was announced just a week prior to a Public Accounts Committee report that criticised the MoD’s continued ‘problems in delivering the Astute submarine programme within budget’.

Replacing the Royal Navy’s Trafalgar class submarines, the Astute class feature the latest nuclear-powered technology, operating covertly and remaining undetected in almost all circumstances despite being 50 per cent bigger than their predecessors.

The submarines also have the ability to circumnavigate the world submerged, manufacturing the crew’s oxygen from seawater as they go and are armed with Spearfish torpedoes and Tomahawk land attack missiles.

Alongside its production of the Astute class, BAE Systems is also the industrial lead for the Dreadnought programme, the Royal Navy’s next generation of nuclear deterrent submarines. 
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[*] posted on 19-6-2017 at 08:00 PM


PARIS: Raytheon talks to UK over US Navy precision landing system for new carriers

19 June, 2017 SOURCE: Flight Daily News BY: Beth Stevenson Paris

Raytheon is in discussions with the UK government regarding the potential adoption of the US Navy's precision landing system onto the Royal Navy’s new Queen Elizabeth-class aircraft carrier, for use with the Royal Navy's Lockheed Martin F-35B.

The Joint Precision and Landing System (JPALS) is currently being tested at NAS Patuxent River, in Maryland, and has received $750 million in funding to date. The GPS-guided system is being developed to allow for the USN to land its F-35B/Cs on vessels, allowing the aircraft to land within 20cm (8in) of its target.

This could be rolled out to other F-35 operators that are planning to integrate their systems into ship operations, including the UK, which is acquiring the F-35B for operations at sea, with the second carrier being the most likely to initially adopt the system.

"We’re working with the UK government to see if we can add this to the second ship," Bob Delorge, vice-president of transportation and support services at Raytheon, told Flight Daily News. “The window of opportunity for this is probably a couple of years out for the UK.”

The first carrier is due to begin operating as of 2018, but could be retrofitted with the JPALS system should it be required, just as the USN’s ships are being modified to integrate the system.

Italy could also be a potential market for JPALS, as it is acquiring F-35Bs for its Cavour-class carrier.

Additionally, Raytheon is also pitching the system for land and vehicle-mounted applications.

"We’re looking at an expeditionary and land version of this," Delorge says. "We see a bigger market out there than just the F-35 and ship-based operations."

This could include integration onto a Humvee, guiding an aircraft to a forward operating base to provide close air support.

Meanwhile, Raytheon's Joint Miniature Munitions Bomb Rack Unit (JMM BRU) to be integrated onto the F-35, recently completed its critical design review. Development is still in the design phase, with the next step being to test that it can withstand “harsh naval environments”.

Each JMM BRU has positions for four weapons, and is designed to carry Raytheon’s Small Diameter Bomb II.
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[*] posted on 21-6-2017 at 04:29 PM


Big British Queen Elizabeth Carrier Featured At Paris Air Show

By Colin Clark

on June 20, 2017 at 10:54 AM


A computer-generated image of a Royal Navy F-35B taking off vertically from the new carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth

PARIS AIR SHOW: First it was cyber. Now I find myself covering ships at an air show. Ok. They are aircraft carriers so I guess we can give the Queen Elizabeth carriers a pass. The big news here? The first of the two ships should sail for the first time later this month, or maybe next month — depending on the weather and the tides. That was the word from Rear Adm. Keith Blount of the Royal Navy who came here for a visit of several hours, much of which he spent with the press.

Why did he spend so much time with the dreaded media at an air show? Probably because the main combat power of the ship (aside from SAS, Royal Marines and anti-submarine helicopters) will derive from the 36 F-35Bs the QE class can carry into battle.


HMS Queen Elizabeth capabilities

Among the QE class’ most intriguing characteristics will be its completely clear and uncluttered flight deck which will allow a large number of helicopters to be stationed ready for takeoff or a large number of F-35s. Since the QE class was reportedly built from the start with an eye to putting Special Air Service and Royal Marines directly into harm’s way, supported by Merlin helicopters and F-35Bs, there’s an obvious logic to this deck.

And Blount told reporters the carriers would carry a Royal Marine Special Purpose Task Group of indeterminate size on every mission. In addition, they will sail with the best Combat Search and Rescue (CSAR) capabilities they can carry, given whatever other missions they’ve got, Blount told us. One of the more likely aircraft to be added to the ship to support these is some version of the V-22. There have been persistent rumors that Britain wants to buy some, but nothing definitive has been said publicly.

And that’s why we’re talking about ships at the air show.
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[*] posted on 22-6-2017 at 12:56 PM


PARIS: UK carrier's helicopter fleet comes to the fore

21 June, 2017 SOURCE: Flight Daily News BY: Murdo Morrison Paris

While the Lockheed Martin F-35B will inevitably be the main attraction of the Royal Navy’s new Queen Elizabeth-class carrier, the service is expecting the rotary fleet to really come into its own through the deployment of the AgustaWestland AW101 Merlin, plus other possible rotorcraft in the future.
It is currently residing at Rosyth in Scotland, and weather-dependent it will embark on the first phase of sea trials in coming weeks.

“HMS Queen Elizabeth is just about to sail, and I hope it will sail this month,” Rear Adm Keith Blount, assistant chief of naval staff (aviation, amphibious capability and carriers), told a media briefing at the show. “We’re now counting down the days to sail, opposed to the months.”

It will end up in Portsmouth by the end of the year, followed by rotary-wing testing in 2018. It will then transit to the east coast of the USA for trials of the F-35 by the end of 2018.

The RN’s future carrier strike group will consist of 24 F-35Bs deployed on-board the vessel, plus a blend of Merlins in both the standard and Crowsnest roles, although the carrier can carry up to 36 F-35B examples. Initial operational capability (IOC) for carrier strike is planned for 2020.

The Merlin’s new Crowsnest capability will be provided via the Thales-developed Searchwater radar and Cerberus mission system, which is expected to reach IOC with the RN in 2020, and full capability in 2021-2022.

“We’re proud to say the F-35B will be the aircraft of choice,” Blount says, although he stresses that it will have to work “in harmony” with the Merlins.

“Although we’ve been operating this [the Merlin] for years, I think we’ll soon see a purple patch where it really blooms,” he notes.

Merlin Mk3/4 variants will be initially used to support the UK’s equivalent of the carrier on-board delivery (COD) mission, until a decision is made on how to carry this out long-term. The Royal Air Force’s Boeing Chinooks could be utilised, or a new aircraft such as the Bell Boeing V-22.

The RN is considering buying the tiltrotors for this mission in alignment with the US Navy’s execution of COD – a V-22 can carry one F-35 engine – but is yet to make a decision on this.

“What I’m quite keen to do is get as many rotary-wing authorisations for the carrier [as possible],” Blount noted.
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[*] posted on 27-6-2017 at 02:01 PM


British Navy’s aircraft carrier sets sail for first sea trials

By: Andrew Chuter, June 26, 2017 (Photo Credit: UK Ministry of Defence)



LONDON — Nearly 20 years after the British government first decided to build two large aircraft carriers to revive the Royal Navy’s global air strike capability, the first of those warships, HMS Queen Elizabeth, has left the dock at Rosyth, Scotland, to start sea trials.

The 70,000 ton carrier slowly emerged from the dock today where the BAE Systems-led Aircraft Carrier Alliance has assembled the warship from modules built by shipyards around Britain in a program set to cost around £6.2 billion (U.S. $7.8 billion) by the time the second carrier, HMS Prince of Wales, is completed in 2019.

The Queen Elizabeth squeezed out of the dock with just 14 inches clearance either side to start initial trials in the North Sea.

The contractor trials are expected to last for around 11 weeks before the carrier heads for the naval base at Portsmouth, which will be her home for the next 50 years or so. 


If things go according to plan, the carrier is expected to be accepted off contract by the Royal Navy around the end of the year.

Unspecified technical issues have delayed the start of the trials by about two months, but Ministry of Defense officials have previously said it is a minor setback and within the tolerance of the program to remain on track.

The carriers are the largest warships ever operated by the Royal Navy.

The vessels are 280 meters long and can embark up to 40 Lightning II short take-off vertical landing jets and helicopters — although senior naval officers have said they could actually carry many more aircraft if required.

The most notable design feature is the carriers two island sections instead of one. The design provides independent control of navigation in the forward island with an air traffic operations in aft island.

The hangar deck measures 155 meters by 33 meters with lifts capable of lifting two aircraft onto the flight deck simultaneously in about 60 seconds. The vessels are powered by an integrated electric propulsion system employing two Rolls-Royce MT30 gas turbine units and two Wärtsilä diesel generators. 

Although not referring directly to the sea trials process, the National Audit Office, the government’s financial watchdog, warned in a report recently that the MoD was now entering a “high risk phase” of the project as it sought to bring together various core carrier strike programs between now and full flexible operating capability in 2026.

“The next three years will be critical to establishing the carrier strike capability. The MoD must bring together the carriers, F-35B Lightning II jets, and Crowsnest [airborne early warning ] radar [helicopters] with trained crews and supporting infrastructure, logistics, communications and surveillance. It needs to test and operate all these elements together in preparation for deploying in 2021,” said the NAO.

“It [the MoD] is focusing on managing strategic risks across the program over the next three years which could have a significant impact on delivery,” said the NAO report on delivering the Royal Navy’s carrier strike.

The report highlighted shortages of skilled naval personnel, tight schedules with limited contingency on the three core carrier related programs and operational unknowns that would only become clear after equipment testing as being the prime risks.

Queen Elizabeth’s emergence from the dock at Rosyth has been a long time in the making. The Labour Government led by Prime Minister Tony Blair mandated the revivial of the Royal Navy’s large deck carrier capability in the defense review of 1998.

The contract with the Aircraft Carrier Alliance saw the first metal cut on the warships around eight years ago. To finally get this far is no mean achievement for the program. Labour and Conservatives have both sought to reduce, delay or cut the program altogether at various times. 

At one point, the Conservatives even sought to have parts of the carrier redesigned during construction when they opted to swap the F-35 B for the conventional take-off and landing carrier variant. ‎That idea was eventually scrapped due to the high cost of amending the carrier design. It will be the first time the British have had a large deck carrier at sea since 1984 when the Royal Navy pensioned off HMS Hermes. Since the Conservative government's Strategic Defence and Security Review of 2010, the British haven’t operated a naval air strike capability at all after the Invincible-class light carriers with their Harrier jets were controversially scrapped.

British pilot and carrier operational skills have been retained primarily by seconding personnel to the U.S. Navy

Initial operating capability of a force of F-35B short take and vertical landing strike jets, along with Crowsnest radar-equipped, airborne early warning-equipped helicopters, onboard HMS Queen Elizabeth are expected by 2020.

Fixed-wing flight trials with three British F-35Bs off the East coast of the United States are slated for next year following earlier helicopter tests with Merlin and Chinooks.

The cash-strapped British won’t have sufficient F-35Bs available initially to fully equip the warship and the British government announced late last year that U.S. Marine Corp jets would also be deployed on the Queen Elizabeth during it’s first operational deployment scheduled for 2021.

The British don’t have the resources to operate both of their carriers at once but the completion of HMS Prince of Wales will enable the Royal Navy to have one carrier available for operations at all times.

The jets are also being flown by the Royal Air Force on land-based operations.

The British government has pledged to buy 48 jets and has given a vague commitment that it will eventually acquire 138 Lightning II’s by the time the aircraft program ends.
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[*] posted on 27-6-2017 at 02:07 PM


Pic report compliments of the UK Daily Mail (so the article is shyte)

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4640214/HMS-Queen-El...
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[*] posted on 28-6-2017 at 08:38 AM


It's being moved by tug under a bridge, British media however are treating it like the five year mission of the statrship Enterprise, "boldy going where no man has gone before" :mad: :dork:



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[*] posted on 2-7-2017 at 04:39 PM


BAE Systems gets green light on $4.9 billion deal from UK for anti-sub warfare frigates

By: Andrew Chuter, July 1, 2017 (Photo Credit: Courtesy of BAE Systems)



LONDON -The British government has given the green light to BAE Systems to build three Type 26 anti-submarine warfare frigates in a deal worth around £3.7 billion, or U.S. $4.9 billion, Defence Secretary Michael Fallon announced.

The deal is the first batch of a fleet of eight warships due to be handed over to the Royal Navy to replace the current Type 23 frigates for escorting the new Queen Elizabeth class aircraft carriers and protecting the nuclear submarine fleet as they come and go from their base in Scotland.

No precise delivery timelines for the new warships have been given by the MoD, but a BAE spokesman said the ship was scheduled to be accepted by the Royal Navy around the mid-2020s.

That would suggest a delay of a couple of years past the original timescale. Previously the two sides had been working towards having the first warship available for operations in 2023, when the first of the Type 23s, HMS Argyll, was due to be pensioned off.

The first of the new aircraft carriers started sea trials last week and is expected to start its first operational deployment in 2021, protected by updated Type 23s.

The Royal Navy had originally been scheduled to receive 13 of the Type 26s, but five of the warships were axed in the 2015 strategic defense and security review. Alternatively, those will eventually be replaced by a new general purpose frigate known as the Type 31. The Type 31 program remains undefined, and industry executives here said there is no real money yet available to get the project underway.  

That said, signing of the Type 26 contract after around three years of fierce negotiations over price and terms and conditions might provide a boost for the marine industry here beyond the local market. The deal will reassure potential export buyers the program is going ahead roughly to schedule, said the executives.

Australia and Canada are expected to go forward with a new frigate program in the next few months and the Type 26 is a contender for both requirements.   

Commenting on the deal, Fallon said: “The contract is structured to ensure value for taxpayers ’ money and, importantly, now designed to protect them from extra bills from project overrun. The investment will secure hundreds of skilled jobs at BAE Systems on the Clyde for the next 20 years, and thousands of jobs in the supply chain across Britain. ”

The MoD said in a statement the contract was “specifically structured to motivate both sides to deliver to a successful outcome, where both parties share in the pain and gain in the delivery of the programme.”

BAE and Britain’s cash-strapped Ministry of Defence had originally been expected to cut  steel on the first of the 6,900 tonne warships around this time last year, but the prolonged negotiations resulted in the deal only being concluded a few weeks ago. The official announcement was held up by last month’s general election.

The delay in completing negotiations has been mitigated by a series of long-lead item contracts to key equipment suppliers and demonstration phase work with BAE to mature the design.

The £3.7 billion price tag for the three ships includes money already spent on long-lead items, ongoing development costs and some infrastructure work being paid for by the MoD at BAE’s two yards in Glasgow, Scotland, where the warships will be built.

In a briefing with reporters last week, executives at Rolls-Royce Marine said the first of three MT30 gas turbines ordered under the long-lead time arrangement had already been delivered to BAE’s Glasgow yards where the warships are to be built.

Rolls-Royce is set to be a major beneficiary of the program. Aside from supplying one MT30 package per warship the company is providing a range of equipment including steering gear, rudders, propellers and mission bay handling systems. Its German subsidiary MTU is supplying diesel generators.

The MoD said the contract for the second batch of five ships is not expected to be negotiated until the early 2020s. 
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[*] posted on 3-7-2017 at 07:41 PM


Rejoice, but bad news awaits for Type 26?

03rd July 2017 - 9:45

by Richard Thomas in London



Seemingly timing the release to coincide with the Sunday papers, the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) announced on 2 July that it had awarded BAE Systems a £3.7 billion contract for the manufacture of three Type 26 frigates.

Typically, industry has reacted positively for the most part, with prime contractor and employment unions scrabbling over themselves to issue embargoed releases days in advance.

In a statement BAE Systems said that steel for the first vessel is due to be cut in Glasgow in the coming weeks and that the contract ‘provides a strong foundation for the next two decades of shipbuilding in Scotland’ while ‘securing more than 3,400 jobs across BAE Systems and the wider UK maritime supply chain’.

Charles Woodburn, chief executive BAE Systems, said: ‘We are extremely proud to be chosen to design and manufacture vessels that will give the Royal Navy an essential, next generation capability and be a vital addition to its fleet.
 
‘Today we have five River-class offshore patrol vessels at varying stages of construction for the Royal Navy across our shipyards in Glasgow and we look forward to starting manufacture on the first Type 26 ship in the coming weeks.’

Meanwhile the GMB shipbuilders union ‘welcomed the announcement’ that a contract for the Type 26 build phase had been signed. The union stated that the deal will secure around 1,700 shipbuilding jobs in Scotland and 1,700 further jobs across the UK until 2035.

Ross Murdoch, GMB National Officer, called it 'fantastic news' but also commented on the desire to see 'future confirmation' on the other five ships planned.

Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon also met this tide of optimism with the standard line of rising defence budgets and the eponymous £178 billion ‘equipment plan’.
 
‘The Type 26 frigate is a cutting-edge warship, combining the expertise of the British shipbuilding industry with the excellence of the Royal Navy. We will cut steel on the first ship later this month – a hugely significant milestone that delivers on our commitment to maintain our global naval power.'

Eight of the near 8,000t frigates are expected to be built for the UK Royal Navy but with the usual practice of batch-buying, there is room for the Government to manoeuvre should it require the MoD to make some inroads into a growing financial black hole in the ministry’s finances.

Saving will be made in manpower when the crews begin switching across from the ageing T23 frigates to the new T26’s, however a move by European NATO countries to pool resources and capabilities could see a further reduction in surface fleet numbers. 

Recall that it was decided that six T45 air defence destroyers could do the job where 12 had been planned for, with the powers-that-be claiming that a class twice as capable as its predecessor needed only half the numbers.

That said, at least frigates are going to be built. 

However the spectre of a further hollowing out of the navy raises another ephemeral digit as it is not clear that the current build programme is going to be able to meet the schedule for the planned out-of-service dates for the Type 23’s. All the Type 23’s at the date of their departure will have endured over 30 years of hard service.

And questions remain as well over what arms will equip the Type 26 as any delays to industry programmes could, again, see the billion pound warships greatly reduced in firepower. The current frigate fleet has seen its Harpoon ASuW weapon system mostly removed, with only one of two Type 23's currently escorting the HMS Queen Elizabeth in its sea trials equipped with a ship-to-ship missile capability. 

Industry watchers are also awaiting the MoD's long-awaited response to Sir John Parker's National Shipbuilding Strategy document released last year which urged Government to diversify its industrial base and produce a vessel capable for export. 

The vessel intended to bulk up the number of the frigate fleet post Type 26, the so-called Type 31 light frigate, is in its infancy in terms of design. And while the UK industry and purse-holders procrastinate, export rivals such Naval Group (formerly DCNS) and its Bellharra light frigate are already ahead of the curve, and aiming for dozens of vessels produced for the international market as well as domestic customers.

So while this latest announcement in the long-running saga should be welcomed it remains to be seen what cuts, nicks and salami slices are hiding just around the bend.
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[*] posted on 3-7-2017 at 11:21 PM


It's a cutting edge warship. That we can't afford to arm with anti-ship missiles...





In a low speed post-merge manoeuvring fight, with a high off-boresight 4th generation missile and Helmet Mounted Display, the Super Hornet will be a very difficult opponent for any current Russian fighter, even the Su-27/30
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[*] posted on 4-7-2017 at 10:45 AM


Quote: Originally posted by ADMK2  
It's a cutting edge warship. That we can't afford to arm with anti-ship missiles...



Makes you wonder just how delusional the Brits actually are.

Ah well, I suppose it will be a nice make-work program for workers in marginal electorates.




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[*] posted on 4-7-2017 at 01:59 PM


Worse than that, the new missiles are part of the UK/France JV with MBDA..............IF the RN is lucky, they may see the missile in approx. 3-5 years time, IF they are lucky..................a reasonable approach would have been to buy the latest Harpoon as an intermediate SSM but no, let's all take a near-suicidal risk and see what happens...................
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[*] posted on 4-7-2017 at 04:33 PM


Quote: Originally posted by buglerbilly  
Worse than that, the new missiles are part of the UK/France JV with MBDA..............IF the RN is lucky, they may see the missile in approx. 3-5 years time, IF they are lucky..................a reasonable approach would have been to buy the latest Harpoon as an intermediate SSM but no, let's all take a near-suicidal risk and see what happens...................


Or they could do what we did and spend a whole, $30m on Block II upgrade kits for their existing Block 1C Harpoon missiles to extend their lives significantly.

So now there isn't a single anti-ship missile in-service anywhere within the entire British Defence Force...




In a low speed post-merge manoeuvring fight, with a high off-boresight 4th generation missile and Helmet Mounted Display, the Super Hornet will be a very difficult opponent for any current Russian fighter, even the Su-27/30
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[*] posted on 5-7-2017 at 11:13 AM


Precisely!
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[*] posted on 5-7-2017 at 01:07 PM


Article from UK Armed Forces Commentary blog...........basically a consolidation of all info related to costs................it's enough to make you weep................one of the costs hidden in all of this, are the White Collar costs of all of the scientists, engineers, and other hanger-on's who "feed" off this programme. Despite a specific promise to make redundant 30% of these plebs NOT ONE has so far been fired! These are the people "negotiating" with BAE over costs, specifications and delivery, and you can bet your ass it's over-specified and over-engineered as it currently is for the RN..................

http://ukarmedforcescommentary.blogspot.com.au/2017/07/type-...


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[*] posted on 7-7-2017 at 02:03 PM


Merlin makes first landing aboard new UK aircraft carrier

05 July, 2017 SOURCE: FlightGlobal.com BY: Craig Hoyle London

UK Royal Navy AgustaWestland AW101 Merlin helicopters performed the first deck landings aboard the service's new aircraft carrier, HMS Queen Elizabeth, just four days after the 65,000t vessel embarked on its maiden voyage.


Crown Copyright

The activity involved antisubmarine warfare/multimission helicopters from the Fleet Air Arm's 820 NAS, operating from the Royal Air Force's Lossiemouth base in Scotland in support of the carrier's introduction.

"We have proven our ability to operate aircraft safely," said the vessel's head of flight operations Cdr Mark Deller, adding: "Operating live helicopters adds another dimension to our understanding of how our flightdeck behaves.


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"Now our focus is getting the ship and all her systems fully tested and set to work, ready to commence full fixed-wing flying trials next year," Deller says.

The Queen Elizabeth sailed from Rosyth dockyard on 26 June, and is currently involved in sea trials off the northeast coast of Scotland. This activity will be followed by mission systems testing later this year, before the vessel is handed over to the RN at its Portsmouth base in the south of England.

A second Queen Elizabeth-class ship – the Prince of Wales ­– is currently being completed at Rosyth by the Aircraft Carrier Alliance: a venture between Babcock, BAE Systems and Thales UK.
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[*] posted on 7-7-2017 at 03:21 PM


Royal Navy’s New Flagship Carrier Begins Testing

Britain will embark F-35s on the Queen Elizabeth in 2018
Jul 7, 2017

Tony Osborne | Aviation Week & Space Technology

Getting Underway

Britain’s largest-ever warship, the aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth, now finally at sea, has sailed into a storm over the UK’s ability to afford the capability and its £178 billion ($230 billion) defense equipment plan.

The 65,000-ton, 280-m-long (920-ft.) ship inched out of Scotland’s Rosyth Dockyard on June 26, carefully sliding under myriad road and rail bridges crisscrossing the Firth of Forth, before heading out into the North Sea.

Pride of the Fleet
- The Queen Elizabeth-class carriers have been designed to carry 36 F-35s, but will usually carry 24.
- Carriers form basis of Britain’s Carrier Enabled Power Projection (CEPP) plan.
- The second ship, HMS Prince of Wales, should launch in 2019.

Since then, the first helicopters have landed on the ship’s four-acre deck and tests are continuing to prove the fundamentals of the carrier.

The ship had been expected to sail last April, but technical issues delayed the departure while the Aircraft Carrier Alliance—a consortium of BAE Systems, Thales UK and Babcock, which built the ship—performed additional derisking work with it still in harbor.

Now a debate is raging about the country’s ability to pay for the defense plans that were laid out in the last Strategic Defense and Security Review in 2015.


At 65,000 tons, Queen Elizabeth-class carriers will be the largest operating in Europe, dwarfing France’s nuclear-powered Charles de Gaulle. Credit: Royal Navy

Media reports suggest the next review, planned for 2020, could be brought forward by two years, due to the impact of Brexit negotiations following the UK’s decision to leave the European Union (EU) last June.

A botched snap election called by Prime Minister Theresa May on June 8, which saw her government lose its majority in Parliament, has created additional uncertainty.

In January, the UK National Audit Office was indicating the Defense Ministry may need to find almost £6 billion in savings to afford its 10-year £178 billion defense equipment plan. In April, Parliament’s Public Accounts Committee (PAC) said the Defense Ministry’s equipment plan was at a “greater risk of becoming unaffordable than at any time since its inception in 2012.”

The PAC said the plan was “vulnerable to cost growth” because of uncertainties around the expense of new projects, problems with cost control on long-standing programs and a “significant fall” in the value of the pound against the U.S. dollar, a direct result of Britain’s decision to leave the EU.

Major elements of the UK equipment plan are being purchased from the U.S., including the Lockheed Martin F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, the Boeing P-8 Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft and the UK’s new General Atomics Protector unmanned aerial system.

So far, the money continues to flow. In early July, the Defense Ministry signed a deal worth £3.7 billion to begin construction of the navy’s new Type 26 frigates, to be built by BAE Systems.

The new carriers—the second of which, HMS Prince of Wales, is expected to sail in 2019—are a central pillar of a plan to recreate a British carrier strike capability, or Carrier Enabled Power Projection (CEPP), a capability lost when the UK retired the Harrier in 2010. CEPP also introduces the F-35B and the Crowsnest helicopter-borne airborne early warning capability.

However, Nick Childs, a senior fellow for naval forces and maritime security at London’s International Institute for Strategic Studies, says the fate of the new carriers depends on London’s willingness to deliver the carrier capability.

“On that hangs the strategic credibility of the investment,” Childs says. “Deploying a carrier capability probably still makes a statement about national strategic ambition,” but he cautions that the UK will face problems in meeting major defense program targets.

The Royal Navy is expected to formally take delivery of the ship by year-end, with rotary-wing flight trials taking place during 2018. Trials with the F-35 will start during a deployment to the U.S. East Coast in late 2018.

Significant efforts are already underway to derisk the process before the aircraft come onboard.

BAE Systems, which is working on the integration of ship and aircraft, is using simulation to perform more than 2,000 deck landings, covering thousands of test points. The company has a simulated version of the Flying Control position on the rear superstructure directly linked to F-35 simulators.

Test pilots as well as qualified Royal Air Force and Royal Navy F-35 pilots have been involved in the simulated landings.

Dozens are being performed each day with aircraft simulated in different configurations, failure modes, weather conditions and sea states.

The goal is to declare initial operating capability with the F-35 operating from the ships by late 2020; the first operational embark, set for 2021, will feature a mix of British and U.S. Marine Corps aircraft onboard. Full operational capability for carrier strike capability is expected in 2023, although the full CEPP capability—including the ship’s littoral maneuver and amphibious assault support—is not expected until 2026. 
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[*] posted on 18-7-2017 at 01:36 PM


Thales sonar for Type 26 frigates

17th July 2017 - 11:30

by The Shephard News Team



Thales has received a contract from BAE Systems to equip the Royal Navy’s first three Type 26 frigates with its anti-submarine warfare sonar, the company announced on 12 July.

The company will supply its Sonar 2087 system - a towed array system that allows vessels to hunt submarines at considerable distances and detect them beyond the range from which they can launch an attack.

The Type 26 will be deployed for a range of missions by the Royal Navy, from anti-submarine warfare operations to humanitarian assistance.

Phil Jones, head of maritime missions systems, Thales, said: 'We are pleased to be able to announce this contract with BAE Systems which re-affirms our market position as a world class provider of anti-submarine warfare sensors and systems.

'It’s fantastic news to see our Sonar 2087 variable depth sonar deployed on the Type 26 platform based on the pedigree of the in-service equipment on the Type 23 and the latest inboard processing to provide an enduring capability for the Royal Navy.'
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[*] posted on 18-7-2017 at 02:49 PM


Protect Our Merchant Fleet: There's No More Time or Money to Waste

(Source: UK Chamber of Shipping, issued July 14, 2017)

The UK government can't afford to dilly-dally any longer in ordering new naval vessels to protect the world’s merchant fleet, writes Guy Platten, CEO of the UK Chamber of Shipping.

Awe-inspiring videos of the first Queen Elizabeth-class aircraft carrier have made a big splash on social media these past few weeks. But, in reality, the Royal Navy’s fleet is overstretched and still the Government is delaying making decisions that impact the security of our country and safe passage of the world’s food and energy supplies.

The security of our nation and its trading economy depend on the Royal Navy’s ability to protect the global merchant fleet. You don’t need me to tell you that the world’s geopolitical situation is becoming increasingly unpredictable. Added to this, maritime security threats can jeopardise the safe passage of oil, food, gas and other everyday commodities on which we depend.

Worrying research published last month by Chatham House highlighted the vulnerable “chokepoints” in trade corridors that could hamper the flow of energy supplies, food and manufactured goods, should vessel traffic in these areas be disrupted.

Two of the critical “chokepoints” identified were the Suez Canal and, south of the canal, the Strait of Bab al-Mandab. The Royal Navy has played a leading role in EUNAVFOR’s operation in the Horn of Africa region, escorting merchant vessels through the high-risk area, which has been plagued by pirate attacks.

Somalian piracy is making an alarming comeback. During the first three months of 2017, armed pirates hijacked two vessels off the coast of Somalia, an area in which previously no merchant ship had been hijacked for five years. Four further incidents in the region were also attempted during the period, according to figures from the International Maritime Bureau’s Piracy Reporting Centre.

The situation in the Horn of Africa is just one of a range of threats that require a naval response to ensure that world trade keeps moving.

In the Mediterranean, the coordinated efforts of European naval forces, including the Royal Navy, have saved tens of thousands of lives during the migration crisis. The MoD has maintained at least one ship in the south-central Mediterranean since April 2015, as part of an international effort to save lives and disrupt people-smuggling activity. Royal Navy ships also contribute to the NATO operation that provides support to the Greek and Turkish coastguards. On the other side of the Med, the Royal Navy is assisting with training the Libyan coastguard to help improve border control and counter the activities of migrant smugglers in the country.

Maintaining a strong naval response to the migration crisis in the Mediterranean is key. Commercial ships will of course provide any help necessary to people in distress, but the ultimate responsibility lies with those who are best trained and equipped to undertake humanitarian missions at sea.

But the Government doesn’t seem to be taking seriously the renewal of its naval fleet – which should give all of us the jitters.

The first three of eight Type-26 frigates are to be built for the Royal Navy at Scottish shipyards, it was announced this month. The Government has committed £4.7bn to the Type 26 programme, which is scheduled for completion in 2035.

But it remains to be seen if all eight of the frigates will indeed hit the water. More amazing still will be if the project is completed on time and on budget – previous projects have not set a good precedent. In the case of the Type 45 destroyer, for instance, the Ministry of Defence had originally planned to order 12 of the vessels, which would have replaced a dozen of the older Type 42s.

But firm orders only materialised for six destroyers, which arrived two years behind schedule and over £1.5bn over budget. (Then there was the small problem that immobilised the vessel’s engine in warm climates).

The Queen Elizabeth-class project, thankfully, remains on schedule but its original budget has doubled to £6.2bn because the Government couldn’t decide on a design.

We have absolutely no more time to waste, let alone money – indecision costs billions.

More detailed plans to renew the frigate fleet are to be included in the Government’s National Shipbuilding Strategy, which was slated for release in “Spring 2017” but has still not materialised. New Type 26 and Type 31E general-purpose frigates have been mooted but we await clarity.

In maintaining Britain’s naval might, we also maintain the security of Europe and the world. Not only that, in protecting the world’s merchant fleet, the Royal Navy keeps the lights on and food on the table. It’s critical that the Government avoids any more delays or deviation. Order those frigates and show the world what the UK is made of.

-ends-
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[*] posted on 18-7-2017 at 10:15 PM


Published: Tuesday, 18 July 2017 09:22

Royal Navy Type 23 Frigate HMS Montrose Returns to Sea After Missile & Radar Upgrade
 
The Royal Navy Type 23 Frigate HMS Montrose went back to sea on 7th July for the first time in almost three years. HMS Montrose began her refit in 2014.The existing 996 radar and Seawolf air defence system have been replaced with the Artisan 3D radar and Sea Ceptor (also known as MBDA's CAMM).
 
 
Type 23 Frigate HMS Westminster sailing back to sea after major refit. Royal Navy picture.
  
This, and other upgrades will allow her to operate in any of the world’s hot spots well into the future. Sea Ceptor and the new “Shared Infrastructure “ Command System, the brains of the ship, provides the capability to protect Montrose and other units around her from a wide range of threats. When she sailed, it was the first time at sea for a number of young sailors onboard.

Other work carried out included stripping the ship back to bare metal and inserting over 1000 patches of new steel to replace worn out areas after her 25 years of service, since her launch in 1992.

Babcock Marine has used over 750,000 man hours of labour working on the hull as well as power generation, a new galley, improvements to living quarters and with over 10Km of electrical wiring and 5Km of piping replaced.

The ship leaves Plymouth to commence a period of trials and training in which the ship’s equipment and personnel will be tested, proving all the work carried out during the refit.

It will be followed by a period of Operational Sea Training, which will ensure that the ship and people are fully trained and ready to deploy in support of operations anywhere in the world.

  
HMS Westminster upkeep program. The same upgrade work was conducted aboard HMS Montrose. BAE Systems picture.
  
Montrose is one of three Type 23s to emerge from similar major overhauls simultaneously. HMS Westminster and Argyll were revamped as well. The latter will go on to be trials vessel for Sea Ceptor.

The new Artisan 3D radar (designed by BAE Systems) can track more than 900 targets simultaneously (in the air and on the surface), whether they’re the size of an enemy ship cruising at 15 knots or a missile no wider than a cricket ball incoming at more than 2,000mph and can see potential threats 125 miles away or as close as 650ft. It’s been designed to ‘see through’ all the invisible ‘clutter’ in our skies created by television, satellite and phone signals and can cope with more than 10,000 mobile phone signals trying to jam it. So far Artisan has been fitted to 11 of 13 Type 23 frigates, flagship HMS Ocean, assault ship HMS Bulwark, future flagship HMS Queen Elizabeth.

According to MBDA, CAMM (Common Anti-air Modular Missile) is the next generation air defence missile designed for land, sea and air environments. Incorporating advanced technologies to provide complete protection against all known and projected air targets. CAMM is currently in full scale production for the UK MOD to deliver the Sea Ceptor ship based air defence system that will equip the Royal Navy Type 23 frigates and future Type 26. The same CAMM missile will form the core of the land based air defence version for the British Royal Artillery. CAMM has an active RF seeker that provides true all-weather performance with excellent clutter rejection capabilities. In addition to the Royal Navy, CAMM in its maritime variant has been selected by the Royal New Zealand Navy (ANZAC frigate upgrade), the Brazilian Navy (to equip new Tamandaré-class corvettes) and recently by the Chilean Navy (to replace Sea Wolf on the current Type 23 frigates).
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[*] posted on 21-7-2017 at 01:21 PM


July 19, 2017

HMS Queen Elizabeth’s extended stop at Invergordon explained



HMS Queen Elizabeth has been alongside in the deepwater port of Invergordon for more than 10 days now and there is growing speculation about the reason for her extended stay. The planned stop at Invergordon had always been in the programme to allow refuelling and replenishment after 12 days at sea which included full power trials. Replenishment alone would not require 10 days, so it is clear there are engineering issues involved.

It has been confirmed that while conducting sea trials, sometime in early July, she hit an item of debris in the sea. Whether it was a discarded fishing net or something else, the exact nature of the debris is unknown as it had cleared itself before the ship arrived in Cromarty. What is certain is that she did not hit a rock or a Russian submarine as claimed by some credulous online sources. On arrival, the shaft and propellers were quickly inspected by divers.

Repairs alongside and returning to sea soon

Mercifully the propeller shafts have not sustained major damage which would require dry docking and a complete change to the trials schedule, not to mention at the accompanying negative headlines. However, in the course of the inspection, a defect was discovered that had the potential to have caused significant future problems if it had not been caught at an early stage.

Divers have been working on the problem which is expected to be rectified soon. Unconfirmed reports suggest this involves one of the supports for the two shafts being slightly out of alignment. This reduces the efficiency of the propeller, causing vibration and noise. Engineering work that might have required dry-docking in the past can sometimes now be done underwater, thanks to pioneering developments by the offshore oil industry. QE had her propellers fitted underwater in the basin at Rosyth as she was originally fitted with brake blades that allowed the shafts to be turned to test the propulsion without moving the ship.


The supports for the QE propellor shafts seen here being mated with the hull while under construction in dry dock, February 2013. Photo via: ACA

There is confidence the ship will sail to resume trials in the next few days. These kind of issues are normal during the trials phase of any new vessel and are no cause for alarm. It should be remembered that QE is effectively a prototype design under testing and some way from being a fully capable warship. The trials programme was always flexible and likely to be subject to change. The ACA, who are still the owners of the ship, are understandably unwilling to discuss the details of every engineering problem that is encountered before the ship is handed to the RN and have not made a specific comment on this issue.

In the internet age, a flagship project like the QE is subject to extraordinary scrutiny and speculation that earlier generations of innovators and engineers never had to endure. Apart from the pub landlords in Invergordon, these delays are frustrating for everyone but should not be a huge surprise, and there maybe more. Keep calm and carry on. There is every confidence QE will prove to be a sound ship and remains well on course to meet the original target of handing her to the RN by the end of this year.

The dry dock conundrum

These events do raise an interesting question. In future where will the QE carriers be dry-docked and, if HMS Queen Elizabeth had required urgent docking, what are the options?

Unfortunately Portsmouth Naval Base does not have a dry dock large enough for the QE carriers. HMS Prince of Wales, currently under construction, occupies the dry dock in Rosyth. As QE’s departure demonstrated, moving in or out of the dock in Rosyth is a very complex process, requiring 11 tugs and can only be done within certain tidal and weather windows. The King George V graving dock in Southampton, which would be convenient for a Portsmouth-based ship, has been closed since 2005. The Harland and Wolff dry dock in Belfast is currently involved in wind farm construction and would require some time to be prepared. No 5 Dock on Merseyside, or Inchgreen Dry Dock, Port Glasgow (both owned by Cammell Laird) are just large enough for the ship. In these cases, it is unclear if there would be appropriate personnel and facilities available to support work on QE. The nearest foreign option would be in Rotterdam but relying on overseas facilities is likely to be highly controversial.

The expansion of D-Lock at Portsmouth would probably be the ideal solution but the funds for this are likely to be hard to find. Expect to see the QE carriers reliant on Roysth when needing to go into dry dock in the long term.

HMS Queen Elizabeth, Invergordon, July 2017. Main photo: Alan Pratt, via Flickr
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[*] posted on 22-7-2017 at 02:04 PM


Defence Secretary Reveals Name of First Type 26 as Manufacture Begins

(Source: UK Ministry of Defence; issued July 20, 2017)


BAE Systems has cut first metal on the future HMS Glasgow, the first of the Royal Navy’s Type 26 City-class frigates and the first escort ship to be built in the United Kingdom for decades. (BAE image)

The Defence Secretary has revealed HMS Glasgow will be the name of the first of eight City class Type 26 frigates as he cut her first piece of steel at Govan shipyard in Scotland today. HMS Glasgow will enter service with the Royal Navy in the mid 2020s.

In front of the assembled BAE Systems workforce, Sir Michael Fallon officially began the manufacture of HMS Glasgow the first in a new generation of cutting edge frigates, delivering on the commitment to start production this summer on a programme that will sustain 1700 jobs in Scotland for two decades.

Together the three ships being built under the first contract will safeguard 4000 jobs in Scotland and across the wider UK supply chain until 2035.

The Defence Secretary met some of the 260 apprentices that will be supported by the work on the Frigate on the Clyde by the autumn.

Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon said: “Today marks a historic milestone for the Royal Navy, Scottish shipbuilding and UK Defence more widely. HMS Glasgow and the other seven frigates in this new class will protect our powerful new aircraft carriers and nuclear deterrent, helping keep Britain safe across the world.

“The Type 26 is a cutting-edge warship that will maintain our naval power with a truly global reach. Designed for a service life of at least 25 years, the Type 26 frigates will form a backbone of the future Royal Navy surface fleet well into the future.”

The Type 26 is an advanced Anti-Submarine Warfare frigate that will provide essential protection to our nuclear deterrent and aircraft carriers, building on the pedigree of the Royal Navy’s current Type 23 frigates.

Its flexible design will allow its weapon systems to be adapted throughout its lifespan to counter future threats. The Type 26 benefits from the latest advances in digital technologies, including 3D and virtual reality, which ensures that the ship’s design is refined earlier in the process.

Admiral Sir Philip Jones, First Sea Lord and Chief of the Naval Staff, said: “The Clyde was the birthplace of some of the greatest fighting ships the world has ever known, and so cutting steel there today for the future HMS Glasgow is symbolic of a Royal Navy on the rise once again.

“As an island nation, we are utterly dependent on the sea for our security and prosperity, and the City-class names have been chosen for the Type 26 to provide an enduring link between the Royal Navy and our great centres of commerce and industry.”

“The name Glasgow brings with it a string of battle honours, stretching from the Arctic Circle to the South Atlantic. As one of the world’s most capable anti-submarine frigates, the Type 26 will carry the Royal Navy’s tradition of victory far into the future.”

As a world-class ship, the Type 26 has strong export opportunities. BAE Systems and the MOD are exploring these, with interest from international customers including Australia.

Tony Douglas, Chief Executive Officer for Defence Equipment and Support, the MOD’s procurement organisation said: “This is a very proud moment for all of those who have worked so hard to get the manufacture of the Type 26 underway.

“With the first steel cut today in Scotland and further work spread out across the UK supply chain the Type 26 programme is truly a national endeavour harnessing all our skills and knowledge to produce the best possible ships for the Royal Navy.”

Earlier this month the Defence Secretary announced the signing of a contract worth around £3.7 billion to start building the Royal Navy’s Type 26 frigates, securing the long-term future of the Scottish shipbuilding industry.

The contract is specifically structured to motivate both sides to deliver a successful outcome where both parties share in the pain and gain in the delivery of the programme. This will deliver better value for money for the UK taxpayer.

(ends)

Production Begins in Glasgow for the First Royal Navy Type 26 Global Combat Ship

(Source: BAE Systems; issued July 21, 2017)

BAE Systems welcomed Sir Michael Fallon MP, Secretary of State for Defence, to its Glasgow shipyard to press the button to start production of the first of the new Type 26 Global Combat Ships for the UK Royal Navy. During his speech, the Defence Secretary unveiled the name of the first ship as Glasgow.

This ceremonial event follows the UK Government’s recent award of a contract worth c£3.7bn for the first three ships to be built at BAE Systems’ sites in Glasgow. This builds on the work already underway to construct five River Class Offshore Patrol Vessels and provides a strong foundation for the next two decades of shipbuilding in Scotland, securing more than 4,000 jobs across BAE Systems and its UK maritime supply chain.



During the visit to BAE Systems’ shipyard in Glasgow, Defence Secretary, Sir Michael said: “Today marks yet another historic milestone for the Royal Navy, Scottish shipbuilding and UK Defence more widely. Glasgow will protect our powerful new aircraft carriers and nuclear deterrent, keeping British interests safe across the world.

“The Type 26 is a cutting-edge warship that will maintain our naval power with a truly global reach. Designed for a service life of at least 25 years, the Type 26 Frigates will form a backbone of the future Royal Navy surface fleet into the 2060s.”

The Type 26 Global Combat Ship will be a world-class anti-submarine warfare ship, replacing the Type 23 anti-submarine variant frigates, with the first ship due to be delivered to the Royal Navy in the mid-2020s. Globally deployable, the flexible mission bay, aviation facilities and combat systems ensure it will be capable of undertaking a wide range of roles from high intensity warfare to humanitarian assistance, either operating independently or as part of a task group. We are exploring potential export opportunities where we have strong interest from international customers.

Type 26 is cutting edge in terms of its capability and benefits from the latest advances in digital technologies, including 3D and virtual reality, to ensure that the ship’s design is refined earlier in the process. This has enabled BAE Systems to work in collaboration with the Ministry of Defence and the Royal Navy to ensure every zone of the ship has the requirements of its crew at the heart of the design.

Commenting on this important announcement, Iain Stevenson, Managing Director, BAE Systems Naval Ships said: “This is an extremely proud day for our employees across the UK and our wider UK maritime supply chain. Providing our customers with next generation platforms and technologies that give them an essential edge is what inspires us. Working with the Ministry of Defence and the Royal Navy we have designed the Type 26 in a fully digital environment and have now seen her through the eyes of her crew in a 3D environment. Through this approach we have a mature ship design that is ready for manufacture.”

(ends)

First New Type 26 Frigate is Named as Steel Cutting Begins on the Clyde

(Source: Royal Navy; issued July 20, 2017)

The first new Type 26 frigate to be built for the Royal Navy will be named HMS Glasgow, it has been announced today.

Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon officially began the steel cutting for HMS Glasgow, the first in a new generation of cutting-edge frigates called the City-class.

Glasgow is a name with a distinguished historical pedigree, and this first name in the class provides a tangible connection with the city where the ships will be constructed.

The work will sustain 1,700 jobs in Scotland for two decades and, and together the three ships being built under the first contract will safeguard 4,000 jobs across the wider UK supply chain until 2035.

HMS Glasgow will enter service with the Royal Navy in the mid-2020s.

First Sea Lord Admiral Sir Philip Jones said: "The Clyde was the birthplace of some of the greatest fighting ships the world has ever known, and so cutting steel there today for the future HMS Glasgow is symbolic of a Royal Navy on the rise once again.

"As an island nation, we are utterly dependent on the sea for our security and prosperity, and the City-class names have been chosen for the Type 26 to provide an enduring link between the Royal Navy and our great centres of commerce and industry.

"The name Glasgow brings with it a string of battle honours, stretching from the Arctic Circle to the South Atlantic. As one of the world's most capable anti-submarine frigates, the Type 26 will carry the Royal Navy's tradition of victory far into the future."

The Type 26 is an advanced anti-submarine warfare frigate that will provide essential protection to our nuclear deterrent and aircraft carriers, building on the pedigree of the Royal Navy's current Type 23 frigates.

Its flexible design will allow its weapon systems to be adapted throughout its lifespan to counter future threats. The Type 26 benefits from the latest advances in digital technologies, including 3D and virtual reality, which ensures that the ship's design is refined earlier in the process.

There have been eight Royal Navy ships of the name Glasgow from the early 1700s, who between them have earned ten battle honours.

In more recent history, two ships served in the world wars, including the Arctic Convoys and the Normandy Landings, and the last ship to bear the name was awarded the Falkland Islands 1982 battle honour to add to the Falkland Islands 1914 honour won by her predecessor.

Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon said: "Today marks a historic milestone for the Royal Navy, Scottish shipbuilding and UK Defence more widely. HMS Glasgow and the other seven frigates in this new class will protect our powerful new aircraft carriers and nuclear deterrent, helping keep Britain safe across the world.

"The Type 26 is a cutting-edge warship that will maintain our naval power with a truly global reach. Designed for a service life of at least 25 years, the Type 26 frigates will form a backbone of the future Royal Navy surface fleet well into the future."

As a world-class ship, the Type 26 has strong export opportunities. BAE Systems and the MOD are exploring these, with interest from international customers including Australia.

Tony Douglas, Chief Executive Officer for Defence Equipment and Support, the MOD's procurement organisation said: "This is a very proud moment for all of those who have worked so hard to get the manufacture of the Type 26 underway.

"With the first steel cut today in Scotland and further work spread out across the UK supply chain the Type 26 programme is truly a national endeavour harnessing all our skills and knowledge to produce the best possible ships for the Royal Navy."

Earlier this month the Defence Secretary announced the signing of a contract worth around £3.7 billion to start building the Royal Navy's Type 26 frigates, securing the long-term future of the Scottish shipbuilding industry.

-ends-
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[*] posted on 22-7-2017 at 05:01 PM


A main gun and a solitary short range SAM system on a major fleet platform as the only primary weapon systems...

I just don't get who this is intended to fight. Pirates?




In a low speed post-merge manoeuvring fight, with a high off-boresight 4th generation missile and Helmet Mounted Display, the Super Hornet will be a very difficult opponent for any current Russian fighter, even the Su-27/30
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[*] posted on 22-7-2017 at 06:59 PM


I still find it staggering that a ship pushing 7,000 tonnes is being called a frigate, especially when that weapon and sensor load could fit on a ship half that size. And Western navies wonder why they struggle with ship numbers...



Repent!

The darkest hour of Humanity is upon us. The world
shall meet it's end and we shall be submerged into a
new dark age. Repent your sins, for the apocalypse,
and the end, is extremely f@#king nigh!
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