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  • swerve
    Rank 5 Registered User
    • Jun 2005
    • 13612

    2016 is not the previously planned launch date, but the commissioning date. She'd be afloat for a couple of years before that.

    We don't know anything about the revised schedule except when she is planned to be operational with aircraft, which is 2020 in the published documents. That's unlikely to mean a four year delay in the launch. The delay probably includes both a delay in launch, & longer fitting (as Geoff_B says) & working up periods than before, to allow for regenerating capabilities after the carrier aviation hiatus which is coming, & the greater complexity of building up catapult launch capability.
    Juris praecepta sunt haec: honeste vivere, alterum non laedere, suum cuique tribuere.
    Justinian

    Comment

    • pjhydro
      Rank 4 Registered User
      • Apr 2009
      • 886

      Originally posted by swerve View Post
      2016 is not the previously planned launch date, but the commissioning date. She'd be afloat for a couple of years before that.

      We don't know anything about the revised schedule except when she is planned to be operational with aircraft, which is 2020 in the published documents. That's unlikely to mean a four year delay in the launch. The delay probably includes both a delay in launch, & longer fitting (as Geoff_B says) & working up periods than before, to allow for regenerating capabilities after the carrier aviation hiatus which is coming, & the greater complexity of building up catapult launch capability.
      Technically the hiatus is going to be 42 years if we are going back to CATOBAR, the RN has a lot to learn again.

      Comment

      • nocutstoRAF
        Rank 5 Registered User
        • May 2010
        • 954

        Originally posted by swerve View Post
        2016 is not the previously planned launch date, but the commissioning date. She'd be afloat for a couple of years before that.
        I realised after posting that I got the wrong end of the stick.
        If having a little knowledge is dangerous then I must be bloody deadly

        Comment

        • Stonewall
          Rank 5 Registered User
          • Jan 2006
          • 451

          Britain's Cameron, France's Sarkozy sign defence treaties

          British Prime Minister David Cameron and French President Nicolas Sarkozy signed two landmark defence treaties at a summit in London on Tuesday.

          "Today we open a new chapter," Cameron told a joint press conference with the French leader at a Foreign Office mansion in central London, adding: "Britain and France are natural partners."

          Under the deal, the two countries will create a joint military force and share aircraft carriers and nuclear test facilities.


          2010 AFP
          http://www.expatica.com/fr/news/fren...es_107512.html

          Comment

          • Stryker73
            Rank 5 Registered User
            • Jun 2010
            • 274

            'Share aircraft carriers' is such a nonsense term. We will both operate carriers which can fly both countries fast jets.

            Nothing different than what happens between the US & France. You will not get a french crew manning the QE or vice versa.

            What the deal does do is put to bed any nonsense that a new British CVF won't be built.

            Comment

            • Frosty
              Rank 5 Registered User
              • Jan 2008
              • 334

              The idea is that if we only have 1 carrier each then when either one is in refit the other can be used for training were not planning to hand over carriers to other nations for them to use to go to war.

              Comment

              • Liger30
                Armed Forces supporter
                • Jul 2010
                • 901

                For the UK, the deal is going to mean that when the QE is in refit, the Naval Strike Wing (which i guess will be the 12-planes strong squadron "normally deployed on the carrier" with the SDSR words) will be able to deploy on Charles de Gaulle.
                Similarly, french planes will crow the deck of QE (not a bad thing at all if you ask me!) when CdG is out.

                Standing to the worlds of Luff in parliament, even with catapults, the QE class is still going to maintain roughly the very same mainteinance cycle foreseen when they were going to be STOVL configured:
                12 weeks a year in mainteinance, which gives an availability for hull of 281 days a year, coherent with the combined 562 day for year figure for both hulls, with a major 36 weeks refit roughly every six years.

                He also said PoW is "unlikely" to be sold, and most likely to be in extended readiness.
                Which means, pretty much, that when QE is out in peacetime, planes continue to work from CdG.
                In case of war/need/improved financial situation, PoW can be pulled out of reserve and work in place of her sister.

                In itself, it is not bad at all an agreement.
                I'm surprised by the lack of Air Tankers-sharing news in the Agreement, though. It does seem like the RAF truly asked a price too high to the frenchies to resupply them with gas... but it may well surface again later, since the french do NEED tankers, and the UK could do with getting some money for the A330 KC1 fleet.

                The drone for 2015/2020 ISD is most likely Mantis, while the "post 2030" drone is almost certainly a UCAV (hopefully carrier-capable) shaped by joint development that will evolve from Taranis and Neuron.

                For the rest, it appears that joint-programmes like the 40 mm CTA gun and the Sea Skua II and Storm Shadow upgrades are going to become the norm under a 10-years long agreement.
                Then again, not bad a news. More chances to see Sea Skua II become a reality... and since i'm the greatest supporter of the CTA gun concept, i totally hope in more joint work equally succesful like that design.
                "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

                • Witcha
                  Rank 5 Registered User
                  • Jun 2010
                  • 1241

                  I've been trying to fathom the logic of the change from F-35B to C and I don't quite get it: if long-term savings are the goals with the Navy and RAF sharing resources then wouldn't the F-35B be the logical choice? With the CATOBAR version there's no hope of a joint F-35 force as the RAF would need to go for the A version. Immediate savings for the Navy may be more(due to lower cost price of the F-35C) but long-term they'll end up paying more for that decision...

                  Comment

                  • Liger30
                    Armed Forces supporter
                    • Jul 2010
                    • 901

                    It has been said that ultimately, differently from what originally envisaged, the F35C is said to promise 25% savings in running costs over the life of the plane compared to the F35B.
                    Dunno if it is true or not. May be a bit high, but personally, for that little that my opinion can matter, i thought from a long time already that the F35B was likely to require a lot more mainteinance and spare parts: there's no escape from the simple but deadly fact that the F35B adds to your mainteinance list a whole lot of moving parts, from doors to swingeing thrust duct to thrust jets in the wings to the transmission of the lift fan to the lift fan itself.
                    Considering the toll that the lift fan and its transmission are likely to be subject to with each VTOL landing, their need for mainteinance will be pretty damn high.

                    The F35C might be less mainteinance-intensive despite the stress of catapult launches, that anyway with the new ElectroMagnetic cats should be massively reduced.
                    I also suspect that the RAF/RN might be considering all sorts of cost saving measures, including (if it'll save a few pennies) scrapping the folding wings for fixed ones and such. They will also most likely NOT order the gun-pod, but that was going to happen with the F35B too, so that matters very little.

                    As to RAF buying F35A, that's not needed and not likely. Nor something the RAF has a real interest in.
                    The RAF wanted the range and payload of the F35C already from a long time. There had been proposals, back in nicer years, to buy 24 or so F35C on top of the B version as a replacement for Tornado in the Deep Strike role.
                    It'll be back to the times of the Phantom: RAF F35C will operate normally from land bases, but they'll be expected to deploy on the carrier regularly and obviously in case of need.
                    The RN will get 12 planes for its Naval Strike Wing and operate them out of Queen Elizabeth.
                    Nothing strange nor special.
                    "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

                    • PhilipG
                      Rank 5 Registered User
                      • Aug 2010
                      • 237

                      Originally posted by Witcha View Post
                      I've been trying to fathom the logic of the change from F-35B to C and I don't quite get it: if long-term savings are the goals with the Navy and RAF sharing resources then wouldn't the F-35B be the logical choice? With the CATOBAR version there's no hope of a joint F-35 force as the RAF would need to go for the A version. Immediate savings for the Navy may be more(due to lower cost price of the F-35C) but long-term they'll end up paying more for that decision...
                      Witcha The reason for the Navy going for the F35C are well known, it is cheaper, has a better load capacity, has a wider range, can land back on a carrier with a full weapon load unlike the B. Not forgetting that the C is at least as I understand it still undergoing testing. I am unsure as to why you say that the RAF would have to go for the A? If the RAF is to use their F35s as replacements for the Tornado in the strike role, then having one that can go further on a strike mission would sound a good idea. The A can do slightly higher G turns than the C, that is barred from doing these turns by software, I was not aware that high G turns in a 5th Generation aircraft was really that important.

                      Comment

                      • Witcha
                        Rank 5 Registered User
                        • Jun 2010
                        • 1241

                        Wouldn't the added weight and carrier-capable features of the F-35C be unnecessary baggage for the RAF?

                        Comment

                        • Liger30
                          Armed Forces supporter
                          • Jul 2010
                          • 901

                          No, because it allows them to deploy on the carriers, which they'll be expected to do too.

                          And no because it gives a formidable and currently unrivalled range. The C variant goes farther than anything else in the fighter-domain so far. Farther than the A variant 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 Witcha View Post
                            I've been trying to fathom the logic of the change from F-35B to C and I don't quite get it: if long-term savings are the goals with the Navy and RAF sharing resources then wouldn't the F-35B be the logical choice? With the CATOBAR version there's no hope of a joint F-35 force as the RAF would need to go for the A version. Immediate savings for the Navy may be more(due to lower cost price of the F-35C) but long-term they'll end up paying more for that decision...
                            As has been said here, several times, the SDR explicitly says that the UK will buy only F-35C. We will not get any F-35A. The RAF & FAA will share the F-35C.

                            I keep repeating this, & links to the SDR have been posted several times. Why don't you read it? How can you comment on it if you don't know what it says?
                            Last edited by swerve; 5th November 2010, 08:52.
                            Juris praecepta sunt haec: honeste vivere, alterum non laedere, suum cuique tribuere.
                            Justinian

                            Comment

                            • Liger30
                              Armed Forces supporter
                              • Jul 2010
                              • 901

                              For now, it is the F35C that we are looking at. No doubts on this. And it will be this way at least until SDR 2015... which hopefully won't make me shiver like this one did. It won't be happy, of course... Last happy SDR was 1998, and even that was massively betrayed...
                              But hopefully it won't be a budget cutting excercise like it was this year, either.
                              However, my pessimist MOD analyzer side tends to agree that a real threat to the whole future of the carrier strike concept do exists, and in particular, with the words of Richard Beedal:

                              The capability 'holiday gap' is enormous - effectively a generation of RN sailors - and will mean the relearning of carrier operations by the RN. There is also the fundamental question that as the UK can apparently live without a carrier strike capability for nine years, does it really need it at all? I suspect that this question will be very high on the agenda when the next comprehensive spending review is due in five years time, one of whose key decisions will be to decide how many UK F-35C's to order at a potential cost of many billions of pounds. It may be all to easy by then to decide to save money by abandoning the intention to operate some of these from Prince of Wales.

                              Readers with very long memories may recall that when it was announced that American made Phantom fighters would be ordered for the RAF in 1965, the Defence White Paper stated that the RAF Phantom squadron's would be 'swing-role', operating from both land bases and Royal Navy aircraft carriers. However the RAF intended to avoid this by requiring the manufacturer - McDonnell Douglas - to remove some essential carrier compatibility features in order to supposedly reduce maintenance costs.

                              Another worrying possibility - which I suggest will be increasingly mentioned in the coming years - is for the UK to buy the JSF F-35A variant. Whilst this is land based only, it still has a longer range than the F-35B and will be cheaper than both the the F-35B and even the F-35C. For the RAF, it seems likely to be a quite acceptable final position for its next generation of manned strike aircraft; whilst leaving the Royal Navy totally 'high and dry' as to the provision of aircraft for its new carriers .
                              I find it extremely hard to disagree with what he reports, admittedly, and it will be hard for the Royal Navy to sustain its point about carriers.
                              If the deal with the French can help in avoiding demented decisions are taken, i welcome it totally.
                              I don't really trust anyone anymore when it comes to procurement for the armed forces and in particular for the navy.
                              "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

                              • Lindermyer
                                Rank 5 Registered User
                                • Dec 2009
                                • 408

                                Originally posted by Liger30 View Post
                                For now, it is the F35C that we are looking at. No doubts on this. And it will be this way at least until SDR 2015... which hopefully won't make me shiver like this one did. It won't be happy, of course... Last happy SDR was 1998, and even that was massively betrayed...
                                But hopefully it won't be a budget cutting excercise like it was this year, either.
                                However, my pessimist MOD analyzer side tends to agree that a real threat to the whole future of the carrier strike concept do exists, and in particular, with the words of Richard Beedal:



                                I find it extremely hard to disagree with what he reports, admittedly, and it will be hard for the Royal Navy to sustain its point about carriers.
                                If the deal with the French can help in avoiding demented decisions are taken, i welcome it totally.
                                I don't really trust anyone anymore when it comes to procurement for the armed forces and in particular for the navy.
                                My understanding of the A model is that it will only be configured for flying boom refueling - so wont be suitable for RAF usage (without modification) so the C will probably be a better choice -

                                i suppose there is the poasibility that some squadrons C models could have carrier stuff removed
                                DACT Proves nothing.

                                Comment

                                • Liger30
                                  Armed Forces supporter
                                  • Jul 2010
                                  • 901

                                  My understanding of the A model is that it will only be configured for flying boom refueling
                                  True, it should be that way. But it may still be fixed at a relatively small cost, possibly. Either by fixing the fighters... or, possibly a lot cheaper, fixing booms at the centerline stations of the new tankers.

                                  I suppose there is the poasibility that some squadrons C models could have carrier stuff removed
                                  It is a worrying possibility. It depends on the effective chance of saving money out of it. My hope and belief is that actually very little (if anything at all) would be saved by having, for example, fixed non-foldable wings.
                                  Similarly, the more important wire-hook might cost more to remove than to keep: modern fighters aren't Spitfires with hooks and called Seafires. They are designed in a way, and have a software coded for THAT way, to ensure it works.

                                  Just like the Typhoon-without-gun idea, failed because of the impact on the software of removing the gun and its weight and all, screwing up the Fly By Wire software regulations, removing major components might have a massive impact in cost and complexity, in particular on the Flying Software, that is coded to fly a plane with certain weights and certain parts mounted in certain places.

                                  And then there's logic, that in an ideal world should be enough on itself to make it evident that planes that can go both on land and on carriers are better than land-stuck ones.
                                  But logic is in short supply lately, so the worries are unlikely to vanish anytime soon.
                                  Last edited by Liger30; 4th November 2010, 18:22.
                                  "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

                                  • Al.
                                    Al.
                                    Rank 5 Registered User
                                    • Nov 2008
                                    • 1005

                                    Originally posted by Liger30 View Post
                                    It'll be back to the times of the Phantom: RAF F35C will operate normally from land bases, but they'll be expected to deploy on the carrier regularly and obviously in case of need.
                                    A very interesting analogy and one with legs I feel. The F35 seems to have much more in common with the F4 than the F16. Of course in terms of commercial success that'd be a good thing for LM as well
                                    Rule zero: don't be on fire

                                    Comment

                                    • benroethig
                                      Rank 5 Registered User
                                      • Aug 2010
                                      • 487

                                      One that could be very dangerous.

                                      Comment

                                      • Hawkeye
                                        Rank 4 Registered User
                                        • Dec 2009
                                        • 70

                                        Originally posted by Lindermyer View Post
                                        i suppose there is the poasibility that some squadrons C models could have carrier stuff removed
                                        I work for an automotive manufacturing company, the answer is no. What you would be asking for is a sub-varient which would require re-planning for those aircraft in terms of what parts to buy and when, and a huge amount of design work to check that the design actually worked both physically, and as other posters have mentioned software. If you take out the ability to fold the wings, every single part, then what keeps the ends of the wings in place? Instant cost implication. You also have to consider that the reason the UK is buying Dave-C is it means all its airframes would be carrier capable. Highly important if you ever need to surge beyond the number of usual deployable airframes. I know you're thinking it's less components to buy but those cost savings would be eaten a dozen times over by the design work that would have to be done, and paid for entirely by the UK taxpayer and you get a less flexible aircraft as a result when you're 15 years down the line when international relations go tango uniform.

                                        Comment

                                        • Liger30
                                          Armed Forces supporter
                                          • Jul 2010
                                          • 901

                                          Which brings us straight to the real danger.

                                          The UK quits the Carrier-capability entirely, thus quits the F35C, and the RAF buys an handfun of F35A only, because the Treasury slaps its hand and points to the cheaper variant.
                                          The RAF wouldn't exactly cry. The UK as a whole would, with such a move, attempt to suicide like at the time of the CVA-TSR2 duel, and the Navy would either hide in a corner and cry or start a revolution, either by mass resignments of protest or by... more violent means. They made all sorts of sacrifices in the years to ensure the survival of some good sense. It would be a tremendous blow to see it all go wasted.

                                          My hopes against this scenario?

                                          1) Dispose of even one CVF and sell it won't be easy. India wants to build its carriers at home, and with the Gorshkov + 2 homebuilt ones, i think and HOPE it'll be satiated.
                                          Otherwise, the ones who babble about a world without arms race will look even more hopeless dreamers than they look now as they cheerfully ignore the evidence of triple-growing Russian budgets, Arabian countries expenditure ever rising and India Budget to grow to 100 billions in the next years from 32 now.
                                          France also would need to build PA2 at home, but actually it still is the most likely buyer for a CVF if truly it was to be sold. However, i still doubt massively that France will have the budget for a new carrier.
                                          However, the main point is: sell one CVF would be almost impossible. Sell two would go beyond immagination.

                                          2) Building them and then selling both, under-price, to make foreign nations stronger with the very one move that self-kicks the UK out of the big league and makes it weaker than it is ever been looks like total political suicide.

                                          3) Change ANOTHER time the plan, the numbers and even the type of plane the UK wants...? Well, that would make a lot of people angry in the US.
                                          ANd it is not like the current change made LM or the US Marines happier at all either.
                                          It would be embarrassing to say the very least.

                                          4) Here should be a few hundred tons of good, sound reasoning and strategic arguments pro-carrier capable force.
                                          But i won't drag it long, because i think that the advantages of aircraft carriers are so blatantly evident that i do not need to explain anything.
                                          Last edited by Liger30; 5th November 2010, 16:42.
                                          "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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