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  • nocutstoRAF
    Rank 5 Registered User
    • May 2010
    • 954

    Saw this in another thread but I thought it might be interesting here. I suspect the author of the article is wrong, but it also might be that he has some inside track:

    A model of the Queen Elizabeth carriers at the Thales display still showed the ski-jump configuration to launch its aircraft. But the decision last week by the British to switch to the F-35C conventional Joint Strike Fighter rather than buy the F-35B jump jet version means those ships now will use conventional steam catapults.

    Where those catapults would come from is a source of speculation, as the U.S. Navy plans to equip all future aircraft carriers with an electro-magnetic launch system still under development. The French Navy reportedly signed a $67.5 million deal in May to purchase two new C13 catapults from the U.S. Navy, but those catapults reportedly have not been delivered, and the order may have been put on hold.
    take from: http://www.defensenews.com/story.php...53&c=AME&s=SEA, third and second paragraph from the bottom of the article.
    If having a little knowledge is dangerous then I must be bloody deadly

    Comment

    • J-20 Hotdog
      Senior Member
      • Mar 2008
      • 3476

      Originally posted by nocutstoRAF View Post
      Saw this in another thread but I thought it might be interesting here. I suspect the author of the article is wrong, but it also might be that he has some inside track:

      take from: http://www.defensenews.com/story.php...53&c=AME&s=SEA, third and second paragraph from the bottom of the article.
      does this mean UK may consider E-2 Hawkeyes now that they can launch it? good news for RAN really! Watch out Argentine Pak-fas! :diablo:

      Comment

      • benroethig
        Rank 5 Registered User
        • Aug 2010
        • 487

        Originally posted by J-7 Hotdog View Post
        does this mean UK may consider E-2 Hawkeyes now that they can launch it? good news for RAN really! Watch out Argentine Pak-fas! :diablo:
        Not unless a more reasonable government comes to power. From what I've seen of british politics, fat chance.

        Comment

        • Bager1968
          Rank 5 Registered User
          • May 2005
          • 3635

          Originally posted by nocutstoRAF View Post
          Saw this in another thread but I thought it might be interesting here. I suspect the author of the article is wrong, but it also might be that he has some inside track:

          take from: http://www.defensenews.com/story.php...53&c=AME&s=SEA, third and second paragraph from the bottom of the article.
          This would be really bizarre, since the MOD is paying Converteam to develop EMCAT... the UK's counterpart to EMALS!

          http://www.janes.com/news/defence/jn...0726_1_n.shtml


          CHRISTOPHER P. CAVAS seems to be uninformed as to recent developments both in the UK and the US (EMALS).
          Last edited by Bager1968; 26th October 2010, 08:04.
          Germany, Austria and Italy are standing together in the middle of the pub, when Serbia bumps into Austria, and spills Austria's pint.

          Comment

          • J-20 Hotdog
            Senior Member
            • Mar 2008
            • 3476

            Originally posted by benroethig View Post
            Not unless a more reasonable government comes to power. From what I've seen of british politics, fat chance.
            you mean if Labour comes into power again?

            Comment

            • nocutstoRAF
              Rank 5 Registered User
              • May 2010
              • 954

              RE: Hawkeye purchase.

              I think that there is more chance that they might recycle all the Searchwater 2000's they have spare from the Nimrod MRA4 programme on a new plane, as obviously MASC called for Merlin's with Searchwater 2000 and the Cerberus system.

              Personally I love a reprieve for Coastal Command, and for RN Harrier pilots to join a joint RAF/RN Squadron based on 20ish SLEPed S-3B's equipped with Searchwater 2000, and FLIR. While the S-3B's might have about half the range of MRA4, less sensors and be less capable at the ISTAR role of a MRA4 they are still decent ASW platforms and if equipped with Cerberus and Searchwater 2000 better MASC platform than a Merlin. Plus you could deploy the S-3B's on the QE or PoW in the future.

              I know it is a very unlikely pipe dream but I still think it would be a good solution to a number of problems on a tight budget.
              If having a little knowledge is dangerous then I must be bloody deadly

              Comment

              • Bager1968
                Rank 5 Registered User
                • May 2005
                • 3635

                Originally posted by nocutstoRAF View Post
                RE: Hawkeye purchase.

                I think that there is more chance that they might recycle all the Searchwater 2000's they have spare from the Nimrod MRA4 programme on a new plane, as obviously MASC called for Merlin's with Searchwater 2000 and the Cerberus system.

                Personally I love a reprieve for Coastal Command, and for RN Harrier pilots to join a joint RAF/RN Squadron based on 20ish SLEPed S-3B's equipped with Searchwater 2000, and FLIR. While the S-3B's might have about half the range of MRA4, less sensors and be less capable at the ISTAR role of a MRA4 they are still decent ASW platforms and if equipped with Cerberus and Searchwater 2000 better MASC platform than a Merlin. Plus you could deploy the S-3B's on the QE or PoW in the future.

                I know it is a very unlikely pipe dream but I still think it would be a good solution to a number of problems on a tight budget.
                The S-3B has a very good surface search radar, so the ASW/SAR mission is covered... but the addition of a volume-area-air search radar would indeed be required if you want to have it act as an AEW aircraft.

                The S-3 already has a FLIR... but since it is a late-1970s (updated in the mid-1980s) design, replacing it wouldn't hurt anything but Treasury's feelings.
                Germany, Austria and Italy are standing together in the middle of the pub, when Serbia bumps into Austria, and spills Austria's pint.

                Comment

                • swerve
                  Rank 5 Registered User
                  • Jun 2005
                  • 13612

                  Originally posted by Jonesy View Post
                  The float out in 2014 is the consequence of the build being underway. All there is at the moment is rhetoric saying that the builds will be delayed. Doing so, in practice. with a modular build that depends absolutely on modules being delivered in a specific sequence is going to be bloody horrific!.

                  The redesign itself is by no means straight forward or even advisable right now. To date the number of workable EM catapults trialled in the maritime environment is zero. If they, the government, wanted to do catobar properly they pay converteam to install their EM test rig on Ark Royal before she decomms and launch off some UAV's to see what ship impact firing it has.

                  The redesign will plug in a delay, not least as the French position will have to be examined - seeings they thought that the base CVF-UK hull needed expansion for CATOBAR ops, but that cant be a big delay or the costs of parked workforce will start to appear on the bottom line. I agree 2015 float out is likely to be about the maximum this could be pushed to. 3 years in fit out and 2 years on manufacturers and operational sea trials though???.
                  Jonesy, it's not my timetable. All I'm trying to do is work out how what the government says can be done. I'm not trying to justify it. Don't shoot the messenger!
                  Juris praecepta sunt haec: honeste vivere, alterum non laedere, suum cuique tribuere.
                  Justinian

                  Comment

                  • Anixtu
                    Rank 5 Registered User
                    • Jul 2008
                    • 92

                    Originally posted by Liger30 View Post
                    Also, i'm thinking that the power of the propulsion system will be insufficient to power the ship and run the catapults as well.
                    The CVF is not exactly overpowered, with speed projected to be just over 26 knots.
                    Most sources seem to quote 25knots maximum sustained speed.

                    (Caveat: I'm not an engineer)

                    Installed generating capacity = 108MW
                    Installed propulsion = 80MW

                    Giving 28MW for hotel, weapons, sensors, catapult etc. power demands, at full speed with all generators available.

                    The limitation on speed is the motors, not the generating capacity, so if you want CVF to go faster, you will need to install more capable motors.

                    IME the maximum sustained speed of modern IEP ships is limited below maximum theoretical by cooling of the propulsion system, certainly in moderately warm waters.

                    Comment

                    • Fedaykin
                      Fueled by Tea
                      • Dec 2005
                      • 5295

                      I have no doubt that if they fit EMALS or EMCAT more diesels or Gas Turbines will be required to run it.

                      There is no chance that MK13 steam catapults will be fitted because the RN doesn't know how to look after steam plant anymore and doesn't want to relearn.

                      Also weight is important, CVF performance is marginal as it is for CATOBAR operations so the top weight of the plant required for catapult launch and landing will be critical!
                      Because sometimes in life we need a bit of fun

                      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TXNAp3mKepc

                      Comment

                      • Geoff_B
                        Rank 5 Registered User
                        • Jul 2010
                        • 507

                        Originally posted by Fedaykin View Post
                        I have no doubt that if they fit EMALS or EMCAT more diesels or Gas Turbines will be required to run it.

                        There is no chance that MK13 steam catapults will be fitted because the RN doesn't know how to look after steam plant anymore and doesn't want to relearn.

                        Also weight is important, CVF performance is marginal as it is for CATOBAR operations so the top weight of the plant required for catapult launch and landing will be critical!
                        I think you mean boilers, they should be very much aware of Steam plant with Nuclear powered Submarines !.

                        Don't forget its a dedicated steam plant for the Catobar system so not sure what the boiler requirement would be for steam catapults or what sort of modern boiler system could be fitted. Obviously it was investigated by Thales for PA2, but no idea what their preferred solution was.

                        Comment

                        • Bager1968
                          Rank 5 Registered User
                          • May 2005
                          • 3635

                          4 years ago the CVF design allowed weight & space for 2 more MT30 gas turbine/alternator sets in addition to the two needed for propulsion. This was after the final GT/diesel layout was chosen, so these would be "add later if needed" items, not replacements for the diesels.


                          I don't know for sure that this has been preserved, but if even space/weight for only one has been reserved, then that's an additional 36MW available for whatever gets installed, as well as a reserve in case some of the other generators quit working.
                          Germany, Austria and Italy are standing together in the middle of the pub, when Serbia bumps into Austria, and spills Austria's pint.

                          Comment

                          • Anixtu
                            Rank 5 Registered User
                            • Jul 2008
                            • 92

                            Here's some info on EMALS power consumption: "The average power required by EMALS is only 6.35 MVA."

                            From http://www.globalsecurity.org/milita...tems/emals.htm

                            Comment

                            • Geoff_B
                              Rank 5 Registered User
                              • Jul 2010
                              • 507

                              I agree 2015 float out is likely to be about the maximum this could be pushed to. 3 years in fit out and 2 years on manufacturers and operational sea trials though???.
                              Don't forget with QE it will be first of class sea trials, these do take alot longer, thats why the 2nd in the class tends to enter service about the same time as the lead ship.

                              The basic build schedule of the ships may not actually differ too much from the initial plans but fitting out and testing is probably going to be a longer process.

                              Comment

                              • Fedaykin
                                Fueled by Tea
                                • Dec 2005
                                • 5295

                                Well Diesels might well be adequate to provide the power requirements of EMALS/EMCAT then again a smaller Gas Turbine can be compact.
                                Because sometimes in life we need a bit of fun

                                https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TXNAp3mKepc

                                Comment

                                • Fedaykin
                                  Fueled by Tea
                                  • Dec 2005
                                  • 5295

                                  One thing of note is neither the Royal Navy or Carrier Alliance Websites have updated yet, still all the pictures and information about the STOVL design nothing nefarious in that but amusing nevertheless:

                                  http://www.aircraftcarrieralliance.co.uk/

                                  http://www.royalnavy.mod.uk/operatio...izabeth-class/
                                  Because sometimes in life we need a bit of fun

                                  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TXNAp3mKepc

                                  Comment

                                  • nocutstoRAF
                                    Rank 5 Registered User
                                    • May 2010
                                    • 954

                                    Originally posted by Bager1968 View Post
                                    The S-3B has a very good surface search radar, so the ASW/SAR mission is covered... but the addition of a volume-area-air search radar would indeed be required if you want to have it act as an AEW aircraft.

                                    The S-3 already has a FLIR... but since it is a late-1970s (updated in the mid-1980s) design, replacing it wouldn't hurt anything but Treasury's feelings.
                                    Thanks Bager - Jonesy has mentioned in the past that the S-3B was looked at in the past as a possible MASC platform, however I am not clear if the space needed for Searchwater would displace the sonarbouys, MAD and internally carried weapons, and at least for MRA4 it have both air and surface search capabilities, & sonorbouys. I really meant something more capable than FLIR but for the life of me I cannot think of the acroynm for the type wide angled IR/Vis sensor system that seems to be increasingly common for reconnicance part of the MRA role. EDIT its an electro-optical surveillance and detection system.

                                    However, I think it is still a pipe dream as in order to get 20 S-3B's for free, we would likely have to place the contract for SLEPing them in the US, and we would end up spending a lot of money re-wiring and re-conditioning them, adding a glass cockpit, adding night vision if they do not have it (I know 40 S-3B's do), intergrating Searchwater, possibly replacing the surface search radar with one of the Selex's AESA maritime radars (such as the Sea Spray), and optical sensors. My guess is you would need to spend about 300 million to get 20 SLEPed S-3B's and that would be with using spare Searchwater's and those in the Nimrod, along with recycling the electro-optical sensor system.

                                    EDIT: Also I am not sure that Searchwater on a Sea King is the same system as the Searchwater on the Nimrod, as I think the latter might be optimised for surface search.
                                    Last edited by nocutstoRAF; 26th October 2010, 12:39.
                                    If having a little knowledge is dangerous then I must be bloody deadly

                                    Comment

                                    • Liger30
                                      Armed Forces supporter
                                      • Jul 2010
                                      • 901

                                      Also I am not sure that Searchwater on a Sea King is the same system as the Searchwater on the Nimrod, as I think the latter might be optimised for surface search.
                                      They are different indeed. Nimrod MRA4 has got the Searchwater 2000MR while Cerberus is based on the Searchwater 2000AEW.

                                      http://digilander.libero.it/humboldt...earchwater.pdf 2000AEW

                                      Can't find the brochure for the MR anymore XD sorry.

                                      I'm fascinated by the dream of a S-3B capable to cover long-range ASW and AEW role both (and perhaps Carrier On-board Delivery and eventually a bit of Air-to-Air tanker too - the RN had investigated using F35B as Buddy-Buddy air tankers to remedy to the shorter-than-promised range!!!), but i think the chances of it happening are minimal to say the very least, unfortunately.

                                      Instead, i have high hopes for the Hawkeye: it was and is the favorite Navy option, but it was sorta abandoned because of the need for catapults.
                                      Now that there are the catapults, the Navy might be able to get to lease a bunch of Hawkeyes (possibly C, and not the latest D version, but it would still be a leap forwards from Sea King ASaC) for a very competitive price from US Navy surplus.

                                      Biggest obstacle, more than the cost that might actually be more advantageous, all things considered, than moving Cerberus onto the Merlins, will most likely be the RAF being bitchy about the Navy getting an AWACS system that "rivals" the E3D Sentry.
                                      You can bet the RAF will be collaborative like a terryfied cat holding onto your face with its claws when the admirals try putting the proposal forwards...

                                      The admirals have to play it all on budget savings. Gotta save every penny possible in the next few years, and contact the USN and try to get a bargain price and a joint-training agreement.
                                      Once they have it, then they must aggressively present their MASC solution and secure it.
                                      "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

                                      • Fedaykin
                                        Fueled by Tea
                                        • Dec 2005
                                        • 5295

                                        At the moment I still see Merlin as the MASC solution with Cerberus and Searchwater 2000AEW.

                                        The only way I see Hawkeye being operated by the UK is if we do some form of joint squadron with the French by co-financing at least a couple more Hawkeyes and then operating them as part of a common pool with the French keeping all maintenance and support in France where it already is. The French operate three Hawkeye as it stands and would like a fourth, that would give five Hawkeye which is enough to service Charles De Gaulle and whatever CVF is available at the time.

                                        The Key questions would be:

                                        a) Does purchasing a couple of Hawkeye and operating them with France cost less then refiting seven or eight Merlin as a MASC type?

                                        b) Could they sort out the politics of it and operational practicalities between the FAA and Aeronavale?
                                        Last edited by Fedaykin; 26th October 2010, 15:02.
                                        Because sometimes in life we need a bit of fun

                                        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TXNAp3mKepc

                                        Comment

                                        • Liger30
                                          Armed Forces supporter
                                          • Jul 2010
                                          • 901

                                          Meanwhile, Carrier sharing surfaces again!

                                          PARIS, Oct 26 (Reuters) - France and Britain could station warplanes on each other's aircraft carriers and refuel each other's planes in a new drive for military cooperation, France's defence minister said.

                                          In an interview published in the Tuesday edition of French business daily La Tribune, Defence Minister Herve Morin said cooperation could include such joint deployment and more.

                                          'Beyond joint exercises, we are in favour of sharing the accompanying of aircraft carriers. A British frigate could perfectly well participate in the protection of the (French aircraft carrier) Charles de Gaulle and vice versa,' he said.

                                          The leaders of France and Britain meet in early November and have been exploring ways in which cooperation on defence could work, especially as both governments are under pressure to cut costs and reduce big budget deficits.

                                          'I've asked our military command to consider the feasibility of stationing British aircraft on our aircraft carrier and vice versa,' Morin said. 'We're looking into other areas such as refuelling planes.'

                                          Other areas he cited were joint maintenance and staff training for the A400M military transport aircraft and joint work on a 'drone of the future'.

                                          'And finally there's the whole question of the European missile rationalisation,' he said, citing cruise missiles and light anti-warship missiles.
                                          If it ensures that PoW is completed as carrier as well, i'm totally for it!
                                          My guess is that the FRench navy is more than aware that funding for PA2 will not come, and thus having the chance to deploy their planes at sea on british carriers is advantageous like hell. Contrary to many others, i don't dislike this much... Unless it is used as an unrealistic excuse by the next british government to buy a ridiculous number of F35C and have a "fleet" of totally laughable size.

                                          Also, it seems that the 14 A330 KC1 of the RAF will work to refuel the french airplanes too, at least for a few years. Nothing against that either, since the RAF will be granted use of their own when they buy them in a few years time.

                                          The "drone of the future" would be most likely Mantis, and since the French plan a long term buy of around 60 drones, that is a rgeat news that potentially secures the project.
                                          The sharing on A400 should also be more radical than just joint mainteinance: whenever possible, the RAF or the Arme de l'Air should be allowed to task each others cargo planes in mission, running the fleet almost as a single, massive one. (potentially up to 72 planes with the 50 french ones!)

                                          While the missile part clearly refers to the joing FASGM(H) "Sea Skua II" programme for the anti-shipping part...
                                          While my personal lecture of the "cruise missile" part is an attempt of the French minister to push the UK to adopt Scalp Navale and Sylver A70 launchers for it for the Type 26 frigate.
                                          Sincerely, i think the UK should stay focused on TacTomahawk instead, but i wouldn't spit on the Scalp Navale if it was to be funded, which really is the main and unique real problem!

                                          Euronaval | Oto Melara (a subsidiary of the Finmeccanica Group) and Babcock International Groups Marine Division have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to offer the Oto Melara 127mm 64cal Light Weight (LW) Medium Calibre Gun System to the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) for the Type 26 frigate for the Royal Navy.

                                          The 127/64 LW has already been selected by other European navies and has been developed as a complete system, including long range precision guided ammunition.

                                          Under the agreed co-operation between the two companies, Babcock would be the prime contractor to the MoD, leveraging its established position as a Tier 1 contractor. The arrangements would provide significant licensed work for Babcock, with opportunities for a broad UK supply chain, in assembly, test, setting to work and on-going in-service support in the UK.

                                          There is also potential for the system to be offered in UK sales of Type 26 derivatives for the export market.

                                          The Oto Melara 127/64 LW gun is capable of firing up to 35 rounds per minute. The production turret weighs less than 29 tons and the peppered muzzle brake with an aluminium shield keeps cost down, improves maintenance and reduces radar cross-section. The gun uses an advanced ammunition handling system, consisting of four revolving drum magazines holding 56 ready-to-fire rounds of more than four different types, allowing flexibility in ammunition selection and a high rate of sustained fire. It is capable of anti-surface and anti-air defence, and area engagement. The new Vulcano ammunition is capable of precision engagement at ranges previously only achievable by missile systems but at a fraction of the cost.

                                          Both Babcock and Finmeccanica view this as an exciting and mutually beneficial relationship.

                                          Babcock Equipment Solutions managing director Roger Gillespie said: We are delighted to be working in co-operation with Oto Melara to offer this gun system for the Type 26 frigate. Babcock is already known as a leading contractor for weapon support work for the UK MoD and is expert in the manufacture, assembly, test and setting to work of naval weapon systems. We hold a long-term Phalanx Close-in Weapon System support contract, as well as having the contract to modify Mk8 Guns to Mod1 standard, and providing logistics support for the Mod1 Gun.

                                          Oto Melara senior vice president marketing and sales Ulderigo Rossi said: The 127/64 LW medium calibre gun system is now in production for the Italian FREMM and the German F125. We are delighted to be working with a UK industrial team to offer this for the Royal Navys Type 26 frigate.

                                          The two companies are also exploring other products and markets where they feel they may profitably co-operate.

                                          Babcock is at Euronaval on stand D2.6, UK Pavilion. Finmeccanica, including Oto Melara, is on stand B3 Hall 2.
                                          This other news is less pleasant to me. I'm a big supporter of the 155 mm TMF gun myself...
                                          But, again, the 127 is not bad at all, and it would still be a great step forwards from the old 114.

                                          Finally, a great news for the Navy (a much needed good news moreover!):
                                          Lockheed Martin UK - Integrated Systems and strategic partner, AgustaWestland, a Finmeccanica company, announced today that MCSP01, the first upgraded Royal Navy Merlin Mk2 helicopter has performed a successful maiden flight at the AgustaWestland facility in Yeovil.

                                          The 35 minute first flight went as planned and the initial flight test phase will focus on testing the new avionics, aircraft management system, cockpit displays, communications and navigation systems.

                                          Rod Makoske, Lockheed Martin UK - Integrated Systems VP, said "The first flight of MCSP01 is evidence of the cooperative efforts of the Ministry of Defence and industry team, and marks the start of an intensive flight-test programme for the Merlin Capability Sustainment Programme (MCSP).

                                          Our continued teamwork will enable us to complete the on-time development of this world-class multi-mission helicopter for the Royal Navy."

                                          Nick Whitney, AgustaWestlands Senior VP UK Government Business, said The first flight of Merlin Mk2 ahead of schedule is a great achievement that has been made possible by the strong teamwork between the industrial partners and the Ministry of Defence.
                                          Thanks God the Merlin MR2 programme seems to be going smoothly and ahead of schedule even! It is a welcome change, and a good news for the navy.
                                          In 2013 it'll have Merlin MR2 to deploy... later onto CVF 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

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