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  • nocutstoRAF
    Rank 5 Registered User
    • May 2010
    • 954

    Originally posted by philbob View Post
    @ nocuts -It would be far wiser to withdraw the Ocean, the Argus from service, and then place one of the Bay's into cold storage; reason being the Albion and Bulwark are fairly expensive and 'high end' amphibs for the RN and they have considerable capability, the Bay class which there are the most of are fairly popular and in demand ships. The mothballed Bay can be used for parts or fully recommissioned at a later date.

    Not going to disagree, but sadly we do not get to decide and the MoD has according to stories in the Portsmouth press decided to cut Albion, and either Bulwark or Argus, along with Ocean (look through the SDSR thread in the main forum for the link and more discussion). Personally if I was in charge the Army would be up for the cut backs, the RAF and RN would actually get more resources, though I would be re-configured. However one of my changes would be 30,000+ tonne LHD to replace Ocean and Argus.
    If having a little knowledge is dangerous then I must be bloody deadly

    Comment

    • graeme65
      Rank 5 Registered User
      • Nov 2008
      • 63

      The RN has new built amphibious shipping coming out of its ears, what it lacks is the ability to project a credible amount of air power that would make an amphibious operation feasible against someone who shoots back.

      The option for a fleet without air cover is patrol oriented roles. So perhaps the option would be uprated river class patrol ships.

      Comment

      • swerve
        Rank 5 Registered User
        • Jun 2005
        • 13612

        Originally posted by philbob View Post
        @ nocuts -It would be far wiser to withdraw the Ocean, the Argus from service, and then place one of the Bay's into cold storage;
        And if the RN ever wants to carry out an amphibious operation, what does it do for helicopters?

        Albion, Bulwark, & the Bays lack hangars. The RN has chosen to invest in specialised amphibious ships, which complement each other, rather than multi-role ships. Amphibious helicopter capability is in Ocean & the carriers, & for that to work, we need three of 'em, or have to accept that there'll be times when we have a capability gap.

        BTW, one of the Bays is being mothballed now, before the SDR.
        Juris praecepta sunt haec: honeste vivere, alterum non laedere, suum cuique tribuere.
        Justinian

        Comment

        • philbob
          Rank 5 Registered User
          • Mar 2008
          • 308

          I was under the Impression that the Albion class had a small hanger, but anyway they can use the HMS Ark Royal or Illustrious for that one of them is certified to function as a Commando carrier. The Reasons I chose the ships for mothballing was because they were one of a kind and in some cases successful (Ocean) despite some of its short comings and degrading material condition, and the unsuccessful (Argus) because it was reported that after the Bosnian conflict in the 90's she really wasn't that good of a aviation ship. I also chose the Bay because there are so many of them, comparatively for the RN at least, and its still in good shape so it could be reactivated later under best case scenario or used as a parts hulk in worst case.

          By keeping the Albion and the Bulwark, and as many Bays as possible they maximize the RN's Potential landing Capability

          Comment

          • swerve
            Rank 5 Registered User
            • Jun 2005
            • 13612

            Originally posted by philbob View Post
            I was under the Impression that the Albion class had a small hanger, but anyway they can use the HMS Ark Royal or Illustrious for that one of them is certified to function as a Commando carrier.
            No, absolutely no hangar. They were ordered after Ocean, on the assumption of there always being an LPH available, or a spare carrier able to act as one. Hence this -

            Amphibious helicopter capability is in Ocean & the carriers, & for that to work, we need three of 'em, or have to accept that there'll be times when we have a capability gap.
            With two light carriers, there will be times when only one will be in commission. What happens if we need both amphibious helicopter lift and air cover? We can't do it. Hence three ships, so that we can always have one carrier, & either an LPH, or a carrier in the LPH role.
            Juris praecepta sunt haec: honeste vivere, alterum non laedere, suum cuique tribuere.
            Justinian

            Comment

            • philbob
              Rank 5 Registered User
              • Mar 2008
              • 308

              well if that is the case then I would retain the Ocean over the Argus. That being said this really comes down to is how the UK sees itself in the world, if they want to give up being considered a major, or even regional power, they have to build up there military accordingly. If they dont, the people of the UK better start hardening up because the next few decades are going to bring some pretty atrocious things.

              Comment

              • Liger30
                Armed Forces supporter
                • Jul 2010
                • 901

                Argus is the only Hospital ship the navy's got, apart from being the place where chopper crews practice their landing skills at sea.
                Are we sure that the RN can do without a Joint Casualty Treatment vessel...?

                Besides, again, the truth is that Argus costs very little to run, and cutting her won't save much.
                "It is upon the navy under the providence of God that the safety, honour and welfare of this realm do chiefly attend." - King Charles II

                Comment

                • philbob
                  Rank 5 Registered User
                  • Mar 2008
                  • 308

                  well if something is going to go you want to retain as much capability as possible, Ocean has more.

                  Does anyone know how crew and troop berthing on the CVF might be arraigned? I was on the USS Green Bay and the ships hospital was adjacent to the Hanger bay and the troop berthing was adjacent to the Well deck and vehicle stowage.

                  Comment

                  • swerve
                    Rank 5 Registered User
                    • Jun 2005
                    • 13612

                    Originally posted by Liger30 View Post
                    Argus is the only Hospital ship the navy's got, apart from being the place where chopper crews practice their landing skills at sea.
                    Are we sure that the RN can do without a Joint Casualty Treatment vessel...?

                    Besides, again, the truth is that Argus costs very little to run, and cutting her won't save much.
                    Both capabilities could be transferred to other ships, e.g. by modifying a Bay, but the modification would cost money, & since the aim is to save money now, the 'spend now to save long term' option is ruled out We're therefore stuck with either retiring ships without immediate replacement, or mothballing.

                    It's hard to think of a way to achieve significant savings in operating costs by retiring amphibious ships which won't cause huge losses in capability, disproportionate to the savings. The ships which cost most to run (the carriers, Ocean & the LPDs) have unique capabilities, & we have only one or two of each type. Cut any of them, & we'll have capability gaps, times when we won't be able to do certain things.

                    Personally, I think that's unwise. There's little point in having a capability at all if it's part time, & cutting major capabilities to save small sums is stupid. Therefore, I think the way to go is mothballing. We can put ships into reserve, thus saving operating costs, keeping crew skills by training on other ships, & reviving the mothballed ships periodically to make sure they're fit for use, & to keep the reactivation crews in practice. I think we could probably mothball an LPD, & Ocean, & perhaps another Bay (note that one is currently being mothballed).
                    Juris praecepta sunt haec: honeste vivere, alterum non laedere, suum cuique tribuere.
                    Justinian

                    Comment

                    • flanker30
                      Rank 5 Registered User
                      • Sep 2009
                      • 517

                      It seems as if the Falklands War has been a disaster for the Royal Navy. The war itself was won, but the requirements of that particular war and the deficiencies it exposed seem to have dominated fleet planning and ship design in the navy since then, with the unfortunate result that there are too many largely single-purpose big ships. This type of fleet can be sustained only by a wealthy superpower, which Britain no longer is.

                      The Royal Navy would be better off, IMHO, aiming for a fleet of 3 to 6 ~30,000 ton capital ships that are multipurpose carrier/LHA/LHD type ships, along the lines of the BPE/Canberra class. They may not have the 'sortie generation rate' of the CVFs, but (a) they would not be as expensive; (b) there would always be at least two available; and (c) if you really need to invade some serious opponent's country, then send two or three of these ships to provide the required air power.

                      Just a thought....

                      Comment

                      • Liger30
                        Armed Forces supporter
                        • Jul 2010
                        • 901

                        Originally posted by flanker30 View Post
                        It seems as if the Falklands War has been a disaster for the Royal Navy. The war itself was won, but the requirements of that particular war and the deficiencies it exposed seem to have dominated fleet planning and ship design in the navy since then, with the unfortunate result that there are too many largely single-purpose big ships. This type of fleet can be sustained only by a wealthy superpower, which Britain no longer is.

                        The Royal Navy would be better off, IMHO, aiming for a fleet of 3 to 6 ~30,000 ton capital ships that are multipurpose carrier/LHA/LHD type ships, along the lines of the BPE/Canberra class. They may not have the 'sortie generation rate' of the CVFs, but (a) they would not be as expensive; (b) there would always be at least two available; and (c) if you really need to invade some serious opponent's country, then send two or three of these ships to provide the required air power.

                        Just a thought....
                        I utterly disagree with this kind of assumptions.
                        The UK IS a major power still, and has got a greater GDP than France. The fact that the UK is no longer keeping pace with France is due merely to the fact that defence is the daughter of the slave of the house from at least 20 years.

                        The Falklands war brought a much needed sparkle of sanity in government planning that was about to definitively sink the british armed forces.
                        Arguably, much as it is an horrible though and a cynical observation, the UK desperately needs another war, and fast, so that the errors are tackled while they can still be tackled. Last time the Falklands came just in time for the carriers to be retained.

                        The fear is: what if the next one crisis come just a tad too late...?

                        1982: Argentina waits a few months more. Invincible is sold. Hermes is scrapped. Fearless is scrapped.
                        Result: goodbye Falklands. Uk forced to accept the humiliation of losing sovereign territory to the first desire of a foreign "power" that invades it with force.
                        Without doubt the worst moment EVER in UK's history.

                        Can the UK do the same errors so many times in a row...? It is surprising if the answer is yes. Everyone, after a few times, tends to learn the lessons.

                        Uk already regret decisions on aircraft carriers at least twice, in the "East of Suez" madness and then in 1982. Do you really need a third go...?
                        "It is upon the navy under the providence of God that the safety, honour and welfare of this realm do chiefly attend." - King Charles II

                        Comment

                        • philbob
                          Rank 5 Registered User
                          • Mar 2008
                          • 308

                          I agree, 5 25-30 Kt ships would of been what i would of done. I would of designed them as modern HMS Invincibles/Oceans. Each capable of 28-29 Kts, holding roughly up to 30 helos or up to 18 JSFs or any realistic combination of the above. They would all serve double duty as Comando carriers if the need be. I would then buy roughly 50-60 JSF's to fill out the Fleet Air Arm just to ensure if need be at least 3 could be used as limited avaition ships. I would design them with a small core crew of 150+/- and the airwing or EMF would rotate on as needed. The ships combat systems would be CAMM, a gun based CIWS, and two or three 30mm NGS and equiped with a Artisan Radar system.

                          Not trying to start a Flame war but I would say UK even with its higher GDP has fallen behind France as a maritime nation , and to that extent India and China (with Brazil determined to close that gap also) are more relevant maritime powers in this day and age. One thing all theses nations have is a vision on what it wants for their fleets and maritime doctrine and that is something the UK and US currently do not have
                          Last edited by philbob; 14th September 2010, 09:36.

                          Comment

                          • Liger30
                            Armed Forces supporter
                            • Jul 2010
                            • 901

                            Originally posted by philbob View Post
                            I agree, 5 25-30 Kt ships would of been what i would of done. I would of designed them as modern HMS Invincibles/Oceans. Each capable of 28-29 Kts, holding roughly up to 30 helos or up to 18 JSFs or any realistic combination of the above. They would all serve double duty as Comando carriers if the need be. I would then buy roughly 50-60 JSF's to fill out the Fleet Air Arm just to ensure if need be at least 3 could be used as limited avaition ships. I would design them with a small core crew of 150+/- and the airwing or EMF would rotate on as needed. The ships combat systems would be CAMM, a gun based CIWS, and two or three 30mm NGS and equiped with a Artisan Radar system.
                            Do you realize that each ship would cost well over a billion, yes...? You are talking of ships far more ambitious than both BPE Camberra, Italian Cavour and such.
                            Three crews, too, that combined would overcome the crewing needed for both CVFs. And thus overcome the cost too.
                            "It is upon the navy under the providence of God that the safety, honour and welfare of this realm do chiefly attend." - King Charles II

                            Comment

                            • swerve
                              Rank 5 Registered User
                              • Jun 2005
                              • 13612

                              Originally posted by philbob View Post
                              I agree, 5 25-30 Kt ships would of been what i would of done. I would of designed them as modern HMS Invincibles/Oceans. Each capable of 28-29 Kts, holding roughly up to 30 helos or up to 18 JSFs or any realistic combination of the above. They would all serve double duty as Comando carriers if the need be.
                              Right . . . so we get 5 Cavour clones, instead of two CVFs. That'd cost at least as much, & what do we do for amphibious assault? We'd still need LPDs or LSDs.
                              Juris praecepta sunt haec: honeste vivere, alterum non laedere, suum cuique tribuere.
                              Justinian

                              Comment

                              • philbob
                                Rank 5 Registered User
                                • Mar 2008
                                • 308

                                Well a billion dollars will be the down right minimum you will pretty much pay for any large aviation ship this day and age. And they really are not that ambitious of a design seeing that the Ocean is just slightly smaller then that size. The Self Defense capabilities Im giving them are really not that great, with the exception of maybe the Artisan which will be fitted on the Type 23's in best material condition and the CVF's

                                All five ships with their core crews of a 150 would come in even to just one CVF, and never at any time would all five ships be fully operational with a dozen JSF's and support helicopters. Some would be down for refit, or in training, or transit.

                                Comment

                                • Liger30
                                  Armed Forces supporter
                                  • Jul 2010
                                  • 901

                                  Originally posted by philbob View Post
                                  I agree, 5 25-30 Kt ships would of been what i would of done. I would of designed them as modern HMS Invincibles/Oceans. Each capable of 28-29 Kts, holding roughly up to 30 helos or up to 18 JSFs or any realistic combination of the above. They would all serve double duty as Comando carriers if the need be. I would then buy roughly 50-60 JSF's to fill out the Fleet Air Arm just to ensure if need be at least 3 could be used as limited avaition ships. I would design them with a small core crew of 150+/- and the airwing or EMF would rotate on as needed. The ships combat systems would be CAMM, a gun based CIWS, and two or three 30mm NGS and equiped with a Artisan Radar system.

                                  Not trying to start a Flame war but I would say UK even with its higher GDP has fallen behind France as a maritime nation , and to that extent India and China (with Brazil determined to close that gap also) are more relevant maritime powers in this day and age. One thing all theses nations have is a vision on what it wants for their fleets and maritime doctrine and that is something the UK and US currently do not have
                                  5??? FIVE??? I had missed that detail!

                                  Even hoping for 3 is demented with the budget available, but 5!

                                  What next, scrapping CVF for a used Nimitz with air group and escort fleet...?

                                  Please. Get real. Not to be rude, but get real.
                                  "It is upon the navy under the providence of God that the safety, honour and welfare of this realm do chiefly attend." - King Charles II

                                  Comment

                                  • philbob
                                    Rank 5 Registered User
                                    • Mar 2008
                                    • 308

                                    Cavor was designed to act limitedly as a LPH. The ships Im talking about would be slightly less capable as from what I understand the Cavor has a long range VSR and EMPAR style MFR, with ASTER missile, a gun battery, she is nearly a destroyer. CAMM is just for limited area Defense. the 30mm are for small boat and asymetric defense, and the gun based CIWS is for last line point defnse. In addition the crew accomdations would probably be down graded slightly.

                                    Comment

                                    • RVFHarrier
                                      Rank 3 Registered User
                                      • May 2010
                                      • 105

                                      The problem with all this is that we're aiming to reduce cost but avoid losing capability where we can. For the sake of argument, let's use the Cavour as our yardstick here; it cost about $1.5b compared to about $2.5b for a CVF.

                                      First of all, we would have to pay penalties on the withdrawal of the CVF construction although I'm not sure how much those penalties would be.

                                      Then we have to consider that these new 30,000t ships have about 40% of the capability of a CVF yet are 60% of the price, it's been said on this forum before that the bigger the carrier the more cost effective it is. So to cancel the CVFs now (and incur penalty costs) and THEN replace them with ships that are either, depending on the number, going to cost even more or give less capability is a bit ridiculous given the nature of the current economic climate.

                                      Big carriers are the best trade off between cost and capability, what is being suggested above would end up costing more or result in reducing power projection capacity.

                                      Comment

                                      • Liger30
                                        Armed Forces supporter
                                        • Jul 2010
                                        • 901

                                        Originally posted by philbob View Post
                                        Well a billion dollars will be the down right minimum you will pretty much pay for any large aviation ship this day and age. And they really are not that ambitious of a design seeing that the Ocean is just slightly smaller then that size. The Self Defense capabilities Im giving them are really not that great, with the exception of maybe the Artisan which will be fitted on the Type 23's in best material condition and the CVF's

                                        All five ships with their core crews of a 150 would come in even to just one CVF, and never at any time would all five ships be fully operational with a dozen JSF's and support helicopters. Some would be down for refit, or in training, or transit.
                                        Core crew of 150???

                                        Cavour crew: 794, of which over 200 for the air crewing, to carry no more than 20/24 between planes and, mostly, helicopters. You want to carry no less than 18 F35 or 30 helos, so we probably go to almost 900 men and probably higher since normal air group for Cavour with this crew is merely 12 F35B and 8 Merlins helos.

                                        Cost without planes: 1108 million euro.

                                        You want a larger one, that carries more planes. Ideally, to justify them, they should have amphibious assault capability too, to replace Ocean and Albion class too.
                                        What we assume? 2 billions each, considering that british shipyards cost more than italian ones?

                                        No way. It will never work.
                                        "It is upon the navy under the providence of God that the safety, honour and welfare of this realm do chiefly attend." - King Charles II

                                        Comment

                                        • philbob
                                          Rank 5 Registered User
                                          • Mar 2008
                                          • 308

                                          This is fairly realistic, it is also a "what if" and "what i would do" secenario, until more real CVF news comes out. The ships I'm proposing are by no means gold plated. The UK built 4 ships of the Invinivible class and one slightly larger derivative so the size and scale are not outside the realm of possibility.
                                          The Original CVF plan called for either 3 40 kt ships or 2 60+ KT ships. The ships i have suggest are even smaller, and the air wings are notional and maxed out depending what configuration they go for.

                                          Comment

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