CVF Construction

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Profile picture for user mrmalaya

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10 years 9 months

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Lets switch F35 and FOAS discussion to the UK F35 thread.

I shall start by asking Fedaykin why the RAF is to suffer?

Over on the UK F35 thread.....:)

Profile picture for user swerve

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Actually I do know one crisis that is rapidly approaching...the abandonment in theatre and retirement of billions of pounds worth of UOR's!

...maybe a slow burn relaunch of a MPA capability something the coalition has taken much flack over...Maybe a lease of some type?


I thought that transport of most of the kit back home had been decided on, as it finally dawned on the gubbinmint that shipping it home isn't actually very expensive, & with all that kit in service, it'd be easy to resist army requests for new AFVs, etc. They're also concerned about the bad PR of abandoning billions of quids worth of stuff to Afghan scrap merchants & the Taliban.

Yeah, they'll leave behind lots of low-value high-bulk stuff, to the benefit of the locals, but vehicles (the UOR stuff is almost all wheeled) can be driven in convoy through Pakistan to a port, from where sea transport home is pretty cheap (what do we have six militarised ro-ros for?), & high-value lightweight stuff can be flown out.

The no-brainer interim MPA solution is a software mod to give the Sentinels improved over water performance. They're paid for, in service, & work, & it deals with the opposition to retiring them early without seeming to back down.

Profile picture for user mrmalaya

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I think the main thing that will happen is that spending will move away from the Army for a while, and I have been told first hand that as soon as they got the UOR stuff they were planning for what would happen once the Afghan deployment was over.

Profile picture for user Jonesy

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So the Telegraph is backing up my version of events:

To soften the about face, the government line is:

The F35B will allow 2 carriers (with jets a flyin' from them) sooner than the C would allow one.

Agreed. Can I just point out that here we are seeing an official commitment to full, year-round available, tactical naval-air at a capability level equal to F-18C (with LO and EODAS) and with high sortie generation rate potential. Thats far in excess of anything we've ever had before and hardly something to be glum about!.

The only thing that you could consider negative about this, apart from the time and money wasted by the 801 lads playing Top Gun over in the States, is that it means that we aren't going to get 2 CATOBAR hulls with 3 dedicated naval tacair squadrons and a full revitalisation of the Fleet Air Arm. Seeings we weren't going to get that with the CATOBAR plan anyway though....its hardly a loss!.

The very worst outcome here is that F-35B falls at the next fence but, by that point, we have two fully built carriers in the fleet or in trials!. If STOVL fails, depending on the finances of the day, we shift over to the by-then more proven EM catapult technology and spend £2bn retrofitting the carriers. Alternately we give SAAB a £billion to get Sea Gripen rolling, give McTaggarts a new DAX-II contract and run on with STOBAR for the forseeable. In the process giving the RAF back its STOL deployable light fighter capability and something able to relieve the QRA pressure on the Typhoon force.

As bad news goes, in UK defence, I've read worse.

Profile picture for user mrmalaya

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The SAAB option sounds like a uniquely British approach. Lets hope it doesn't come to it.

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The SAAB option sounds like a uniquely British approach. Lets hope it doesn't come to it.

In many ways it would be the least desireable outcome as it gives us many of the CATOBAR problems without the benefits of the CATOBAR performance.

It does represent a viable option for naval fastjet ops from the CVFs, if we could not go the distance with EM cats for whatever reason, and provide a useful addition for the light blue. The point being at no time would we be left with no options for using the CVF's without them having catapults installed.

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I thought that transport of most of the kit back home had been decided on, as it finally dawned on the gubbinmint that shipping it home isn't actually very expensive, & with all that kit in service, it'd be easy to resist army requests for new AFVs, etc. They're also concerned about the bad PR of abandoning billions of quids worth of stuff to Afghan scrap merchants & the Taliban.

Yeah, they'll leave behind lots of low-value high-bulk stuff, to the benefit of the locals, but vehicles (the UOR stuff is almost all wheeled) can be driven in convoy through Pakistan to a port, from where sea transport home is pretty cheap (what do we have six militarised ro-ros for?), & high-value lightweight stuff can be flown out.

The no-brainer interim MPA solution is a software mod to give the Sentinels improved over water performance. They're paid for, in service, & work, & it deals with the opposition to retiring them early without seeming to back down.

Well we shall see, the UOR world is not as Rosy as some would portray in certain newspapers and blogs. Certainly there is one certain UOR which I don't expect to be retained or for that matter even see a picture..."Exactor" or better known as the Rafael NLOS Spike.

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12 years

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Finally wave good-bye to Deep and persistent strike RAF!

Maybe not?
Lord Moonie asked the following question, what discussions they have had with the Government of the United States or Northrop Grumman Corporation about the X-47B unmanned combat air programme.

The reply was, "The Ministry of Defence has held an initial scoping discussion with the United States Government on the X-47B unmanned combat air programme. Northrop Grumman Corporation has not been involved."

Going back to the carriers, should we have had the 12 Type 45's at the end of the day.

Dave

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12 years 9 months

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Going back to the carriers, should we have had the 12 Type 45's at the end of the day.

Dave

I see it in two ways I was originally upset that we didn't get the last two ships because I thought 8 was the right number as well as the fact the total number of hulls RN has is now rather low for it to carry out its tasking.

But times have changed and with one CVF and one Albion class always being in extended readiness then 6 of Type 45 is probably enough. Then when you consider the cost of Type 45 compared to other ship types such as the Type 26 then it is probably better that the money saved by cancelling the last two Type 45 is used for other vital projects such as the Astute class and the Type 26.

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11 years 11 months

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Isn't the x47 a USN carrier UCAV? That is requiring EMALS and AAG to operate. Or did you mean as an RAF land asset only?

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12 years

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Or did you mean as an RAF land asset only?

Dave

Profile picture for user swerve

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Well we shall see, the UOR world is not as Rosy as some would portray in certain newspapers and blogs. Certainly there is one certain UOR which I don't expect to be retained or for that matter even see a picture..."Exactor" or better known as the Rafael NLOS Spike.

Yeah, but it won't just be abandoned in Afghanistan. The remaining stock will either be passed on to friendly (& not Afghan) forces out there , or flown home for disposal.

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12 years

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Hello

Just thought I would make a post here I don’t often post here but just thought I would give my opinion on the CVF modernisation to cats and traps.
I work in the marine IT industry and have to install computer systems networks and other electrical equipment onboard ships, mostly in refit. The ship yard I go into has worked on a few of the Royal Navy’s P2’s. I would not want to take on a job refitting all the extra equipment into an already built QE it would be a nightmare.

First up I believe that the ship was designed before a decision had been made on what the backup choice of catapult and arrestor gear would be used in case of dumping STOVL, so big voids where left for the equipment to be installed into, now from my experience I know that a lot of work would have to be done to that void to get it ready for the installation of the equipment. As they had not decided what version of the equipment to use they are going to have to figure out where all the cable runs are going to go how to get all the electrical power up to the cats how to install all the network cable and computers required for the cats how to plumb in extra fire suppression systems for the electrical systems and other pipe work needed. I guaranty that you would be ripping parts of the ship apart to run all the cabling.

Then you have got to work on the deck mirror which again will need all its electrical systems and network cable run through the ship which will mean making internal modifications. You also have the installation of extra equipment on the island. The installation of the arrestor gear will be another challenge on an already completed ship.

I have seen people that say it will be a simple bolt in 12 month exercise but I just don’t see that, starting from scratch with POW would be much easier but a near £2bn cost for refitting an already completed QE for all the equipment I can believe, some people seem to think that the external structal changes are the hard part but they are infact the easy part imo.

The only saving grace having been onboard a couple of Type 45 destroyers is they are more spacious than the Type 42 so cable runs would be a bit easier.

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12 years 9 months

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So the Defence Secretary has said that fitting PoW with cats and traps would cost £2 billion and that refitting QE would cost even more than £2 billion and he admitted that this cost would mean that it was unlikely that QE would ever be refitted. He also said that having continuous carrier availability is far more important than interoperability.

[EDIT] Hammond has announced the U-Turn back to the F35-B.

Profile picture for user jbritchford

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16 years 1 month

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Looks like the cats and traps are well and truly canceled, back to the original plan!

What a farce this is turning into, I half expect to see Cameron and the MoD mandarins with big red noses, floppy shoes and colourful wigs :D

Profile picture for user kev 99

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So it looks like the adaptable design that we were all sold with has turned out to be a load of claptrap.

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10 years 4 months

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On the BBC it says...

Defence Secretary Philip Hammond said the F35-C had hit development problems and it would be cheaper in the long term to order F35-B jump jets

So does he know something we don't with regards to the development of the various versions? You would hope so, given that he said the F35C wouldn't be available till 2023.

So it looks like the adaptable design that we were all sold with has turned out to be a load of claptrap.

I missed the statement and the replay isn't up on the BBC yet, if his advisors were anything like competent he must have mentioned that in response to the undoubted shellacking he got from the opposition benches.

Profile picture for user Jonesy

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So it looks like the adaptable design that we were all sold with has turned out to be a load of claptrap.

Not really....look at the list Prom generated....nothing on it is especially difficult. Its not the carrier being adaptable to the CATOBAR layout thats the issue. Its the costs of being able to build in CATOBAR and operate it thats the sore point. If it was the only option then we'd have to find the money or do what the French had to do and make the best effort at it with one deck. Luckily we have another option.

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[QUOTE=Jonesy;1888684]Not really....look at the list Prom generated....nothing on it is especially difficult. QUOTE]
I don't think that is true - see DuffGun's response for example

Profile picture for user swerve

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An increase in the estimated cost of the work (excluding the purchase price of EMALS & AAG) from £400 mn to £1.5 bn, & perhaps more, for an unbuilt ship, & more for the part-built one isn't the issue?

We're being told that the spaces reserved for catapults aren't suitable for EMALS & therefore more redesign of PoW is needed, that the redesign & extra construction cost is 75% of the original cost of the ship, & that refitting to an existing ship supposedly designed to be adaptable is even more expensive and technically risky & you say it isn't the issue?

We're being told, in effect, that adapting an existing supposedly adaptable design costs almost as much as designing & building from scratch, & it'd probably be cheaper to scrap QE & build new than refit this supposedly adaptable ship, & it's not the issue?

Something, somewhere, is seriously wrong. Either the quoted costs are nonsense, or the CVF design is the opposite of adaptable, & we were sold a pup.