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Future Carrier (Including Costs)

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Future Carrier (Including Costs)

Old 7th Jul 2011, 22:35
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Glojo

The last ships with steam propulsion (standfast our nuclear subs) were built in the 60s. We haven't had a boiler room on anything since Fearless & Intrepid. QEC has electric propulsion, with gas-turbine and diesel generators.

As for F35, the Marine Corps variant (the risky one) is the STOVL F35B. F35C is a "normal"(!) aeroplane.

Your info re beam is flat wrong. Ark was 58m at her widest, QEC will be just shy of 70m.

Dr Lewis has been remarkably quiet for the last 18 months.....
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Old 7th Jul 2011, 23:24
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U.K. Auditors Warn Of Program Risks | AVIATION WEEK

U.K. Auditors Warn Of Program Risks

Jul 7, 2011

By Robert Wall

LONDON — The U.K. government’s decision to change its approach on buying aircraft carriers and Joint Strike Fighters has added risks to the long-term program that are still not fully understood months after those changes were spelled out in the Strategic Defense and Security Review (SDSR), the National Audit Office warns.

...

Auditors also point to risks with using the Electromagnetic Aircraft Launch System, in part because of risks in the overall U.S. program, and because the U.K. version would feature a two-rail rather than a four-rail system.[/COLOR]



Two rails, four rails? Whut dey talkin' 'bout?

Last edited by Modern Elmo; 8th Jul 2011 at 03:21.
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Old 8th Jul 2011, 03:20
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The USN CVNs will have 2 catapults on the bow and 2 on the angle, while CVF will have 1 in each position.

4 vs 2... (for "rails" read "catapults").


As for "risk"...

EMALS is nearly done... between May 25 and June 9 they conducted 14 launches with F/A-18E, and 12 launches each with C-2As and T-45Cs.

More launches are scheduled this month, and launches with an E-2C will begin shortly.

Production and delivery of EMALS components is proceeding for the Gerald R. Ford CVN-78.

http://www.pprune.org/6534939-post26.html


One suspects a bit of "it wasn't built in the UK so it couldn't possibly work" in that report.
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Old 8th Jul 2011, 03:30
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(1) I suspect that UK ends up buying some VSTOL F-35's for Queen E.

(2) Installing catapults in the second aircraft carrier -- they probably didn't leave enough volume and mass margin in the current design to do that, even if it's only two catapults instead of four.

It's much bigger than some sort of auxiliary power unit that might be bolted into a spare storage locker ... much more money and re-design work needed.
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Old 8th Jul 2011, 07:01
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ME

You wouldn't believe how much weight and space margin is in the design. There's plenty......

GK121, wouldn't disagree with you there. The chairwoman (chairthing?) of the PAC is also not the most technically competent person in the world....
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Old 8th Jul 2011, 08:21
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ARES: U.K. Audit on JSF: Concerns But No Calamities

The U.K.’s National Audit Office paints a mixed picture for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter in the U.K.

The auditors write that “the decision to buy the carrier variant of the JSF will deliver an aircraft with greater range, payload and the ability to stay over a target area for longer when compared to the STOVL variant” and also that it covers a requirements gap created when the Deep and Persistent Offensive Capability effort was scrapped last year to achieve ₤1 billion in savings.

But the outlook is not all rosy. The NAO also highlights concerns that remain about the F-35 purchase and integration of the fighter into U.K. inventory. The six risk areas are spelled out here (click to view larger version):



Beyond the F-35, the NAO also raises questions about technology risks linked with the anticipated move to the electromagnetic aircraft launch system, in part because of risks in the overall U.S. program, and because the U.K. version would differ with a two-rail rather than a four rail system.
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Old 8th Jul 2011, 08:24
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Not a boffin,
Thank you very much indeed for correcting me ... I did think it strange how the newer ships would be narrower than the old Eagle class.

In my pathetic defence all I can say is I had a quick look on the dreaded Wikipedia at beam measurements of the Queen Elizabeth and FAILED to notice it was water-line width... My fault, my bad. (I blame my morphine medication) They are indeed big fat momma's I have a 66 - 67 Janes for the good old Ark Royal

I am showing my age by not realising the age of the boiler room was over and no doubt my brain has been influenced too much by all the brilliant documentaries about the United States nuclear carriers that have my boiler rooms. I would guess this makes the EMALS system the option to go for.

It is indeed the STOVL aircraft that is at risk and I am again guessing that this risk should not be under estimated...

Regarding Dr Lewis he is still going strong regarding Naval issues. The last documented question I have that he asked in the Commons is dated the 4th July 2011 but I cannot see any relevant period where he has kept quiet.

The Minister for the Armed Forces (Nick Harvey): As we set out in the Strategic Defence and Security Review, under Future Force 2020 the future surface Navy will have a world-class carrier strike capability, with 19 frigates and destroyers, including the state-of-the-art Type 45 destroyer; an amphibious fleet able to land and sustain a commando group from the sea; 14 mine counter-measures vessels; a global oceanographic survey capability; and a fleet of resupply and refuelling vessels. Work is also under way on the requirements and design of the Type 26 global combat ship, our next generation frigate.
Dr Lewis: I am encouraged by that response. Does the Minister remember when he and I sat on parallel Opposition Benches under the previous Government as the size of the frigate and destroyer fleet went down successively from 35 to 32 to 31 to 25 and then to 19? Will he specifically confirm that that figure of 19 frigates and destroyers will not be reduced to a pathetically inadequate baker’s dozen, as posited in some parts of the press?
Nick Harvey: I can certainly confirm that the situation remains unchanged from the SDSR. The future force will comprise 19 destroyers and frigates. It was a matter of great regret that the Government had to make a range of cuts in the SDSR, but that was a result of the general economic climate and, specifically, of the defence black hole that we inherited.
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Old 8th Jul 2011, 14:37
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NaB - The NAO report is full of references to the operating cost of F-35B. I'm also guessing that the SDSR reviewers were aware of the ructions in Washington over the B, which culminated in the current "probation" phase - and just because the aircraft is STOVLing under test at Pax doesn't mean that the issues which drove that have gone away.

B is at best going to be expensive to operate. There are also numerous fixes in the work to solve technological issues that can be worked around in flight test (such as clutch heating in up-and-away) but are not acceptable operationally. The probation period is to show that those fixes work without adding more cost (that is, mostly in terms of durability and maintenance) or degrading bring-back through added weight or reduced lift.

And how much is it all worth? The Marines are talking about "11 extra carriers" but the fact is that the LHA/LHD can carry six jets (with no EW, AEW or tanker support) before they start pushing helicopters over the side.
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Old 8th Jul 2011, 15:21
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Mate, I think you should be pointing those comments at ME or Glojo, not me. I've already had to write RVL one more time than I wanted to this year.......
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Old 9th Jul 2011, 00:36
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And how much is it all worth?

Not much. Let's give peace a chance. Downsize the war machine!

The Marines are talking about "11 extra carriers" but the fact is that the LHA/LHD can carry six jets (with no EW, AEW or tanker support) before they start pushing helicopters over the side.

I think they get that number eleven by adding up the ten existing Wasp and Tarawa class amphibious assault ships plus the upcoming USS America, the first of the LHA(R) class 45,00 ton amphibious assault ships with no well deck.

It's similar to the "through deck cruiser" euphemism. Don't call it an aircraft carrier, geddit?



I don't think the older amphibs could accomodate F-35's or V-22's very well, so I'm dubious about there being eleven VSTOL F-35-capable USN ships in the near future. The Tarawa class is also supposed to be retired before long.

STOVL F-35's are primarily for the America class. That's what I suspect the plan is, anyway. The decks of the America class ships are supposed to be able to cope with the hot exhaust of F-35's and V-22's, the elevators are bigger, the hangar deck is taller, and so on.

As far as aircraft head count, it sez here:


The LHA(R) will be U.S. Navy's newest multifunctional and most versatile, amphibious assault ship and has been specifically optimized for aircraft, particulalry the MV-22 Osprey tilt rotor aircraft and the new J-35B VTOL Strike fighter. The America class will provide increased aviation capability, vehicle lift, cargo magazine capacity, better survivability, increased habitability standards and greater service life margins. As such the design includes enlarged hangar facilities to house more aircraft below decks and to more fully service them. There is no well deck, so no amphibious assault by sea is supported directly from the LHA(R) class.

The air assault role is optimized for larger air assault from much further out, allowing troops to arrive on scene more quickly and the LHA(R) to be better protected from its station further out to sea. In the air assault role, a typical load out for the LHA(R), USS America would be:

10 - F-35B JSF Strike Fighters
12 - MV-22 Osprey VTOL Tilt-Rotor Assault Aircraft
08 - AH-1Z Viper Attack Helicopters
04 - CH-53E Super Stallion Assault Helicopters
04 - MH-60S Seahawk SAR Helicopters

The America has also been designed specifically to serve in a Sea Control, aircraft carrier mode. In this role she would carry the following aircraft loadout:

22 - F-35B JSF Strike Fighters
06 - MH-60R Seahawk ASW Helicopters


...

WorldWideAircraftCarriers.com - America Class Page


Those numbers sound somewhat optimistic, do they not?

And notice, no ski jump.
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Old 9th Jul 2011, 04:12
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Lets see... "11 decks".

8 Wasp-class LHDs*, all in commission.

1 Tarawa-class LHA** in commission.

I only count 9 right now, but in the future we will see:

at least 2 LHA(R) (one of which will replace the last Tarawa-class LHA in 2012), which brings us to 10... but more are planned, "up to 12" (to replace the LHDs as well).


I still don't see 11... and I expect that we will see 9-10 as the real sustained force.

However, 2 of those will be capable of that "22 F-35B" air-wing, and the Wasp-class LHDs are better suited for F-35B ops than the lone remaining Tarawa-class LHA.




* well, 7 to the original design with boilers and the 8th to a modified design using GTs instead.

** Of the 5 built, 1 was sunk as a target in 2006, 1 was sold for scrap in 2009, and 2 are decommissioned (1 in 2009 and designated for "other use" and the other in March 2011 and "in reserve").
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Old 20th Jul 2011, 06:54
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Originally Posted by Not_a_boffin
QE can be converted for catapult & trap - it's just that doing it right now is not possible because the detailed design work required to accommodate the systems has not yet been done. Any further delay in the programme for QE will add serious cost, given that large heavily outfitted chunks of the ship are all over the country at the minute, with armies of workers swarming over them.
Like the 2-year delay on QE that was announced last October in the SDSR?

Apparently, the £950 million is for BOTH carriers to be fitted with catapults and arresting gear...

http://www.publications.p...-0002.htm#11071817000001
18 July 2011 : Column 656

Mr Ian Davidson (Glasgow South West) (Lab/Co-op): Will the Secretary of State confirm the exact details of the announcement he made in his statement when he said, “I can therefore now give the go-ahead for the procurement of” a list of things, including “the cat and traps for the Queen Elizabeth class carriers”. Does that mean that both carriers will receive cat and traps?


Dr Fox: That is our plan, and I have agreed to my officials now getting involved in contract negotiations. They were not previously able to do so because we were not guaranteed that we would have the budget. When we make decisions of this nature we must ensure that we have the wherewithal to pay for them. Otherwise, as I have said, they are simply a wish list.
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Old 20th Jul 2011, 08:23
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Good morning Green Knight,
This issue has been discussed on a different thread.

Lord West of Spithead (retired First Sea Lord) sought clarification of the statement made by Dr Laim Fox, namely the clear implication that BOTH carriers were to be modified.

All I can say in the defence of Liam Fox is that there will be two catapults which allows the plural wording for cats and clearly there will be more than one arrester wire which also allows the use of the plural, BUT the wording to me is quite clear!

TWO CARRIERS

Sadly that is NOT the case and when asked to clarify this situation here is the exact reply:

Lord Astor of Hever (Conservative)
My Lords, I agree with the noble Lord that this is a very complicated issue which will take a lot of study. I am very happy to organise further briefings for noble Lords if they would like on any particular issue, be it on the reserves or basing or anything else. I am grateful that the noble Lord supports the increase in spending, albeit of 1 per cent, which will enable us to do quite a lot. I can confirm that the cats and traps will be for one carrier-at the moment, we do not know which one it is. Whether to equip the other carrier with them will be a decision for the 2015 SDSR.
Lord Astor is Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State at the Ministry of Defence and this is the transcript of the discussion regarding Dr Lam Fox's notification.
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Old 20th Jul 2011, 14:33
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Navy Experts Encouraged by Early F-35 JBD Test Results
Posted by Amy Butler at 7/19/2011 10:16 AM CDT

U.S. Navy officials are so far encouraged by the results of a week of testing the F-35C with jet-blast deflectors (JBD) designed for use on aircraft carriers.

Navy Experts Encouraged by Early F-35 JBD Test Results

...

At issue for the testing series is assessing how the single-engine F-35C affects JBD design currently deployed on carriers in the fleet. Though JBDs appear to simply be panels of metal and concrete, they actually contain a series of veins throughout their design that allow sea water to circulate to cool the structures. This is needed to conduct quick launches without overheating the deck or exposing other aircraft to excessive heat. JBDs are also needed on the carrier deck to divert hot exhaust as an aircraft launches from other aircraft lined up to takeoff seconds later. The outcome of these tests will provide input on whether changes to the cooling vein pattern need to be made to the existing JBD designs. ...


I expect that part of of the USS America's aviation deck will be water cooled in a similar manner, so as to cope with V-22 and STOVL F-35 hot exhaust. The USS America will probably also have tilt-up blast deflectors like the one in the photo at the link posted above.

Or maybe GreenLantern can correct me here.
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Old 21st Jul 2011, 04:56
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glojo... there does seem to be two levels of statements going on... the "official" line that (as per the statement from Lord Astor) "the cats and traps will be for one carrier"... and the "behind-the-scenes" line shown by Fox that efforts are on-going to find a way to buy and fit catapults and arresting gear in the second ship as soon as the money can be found.

Minister 'misspoke over fast-jet pledge for new carriers' - Scotsman.com News

Note the last part of the article, though...

However, Labour MPs, who have been pushing for both carriers to be brought into service to allow for continuous carrier capability in the Royal Navy, as well as boosting jobs on the Clyde and at Rosyth, claimed last night that they had received private assurances from Dr Fox outside the chamber following the statement.

Mr Davidson said that he had taken the Defence Secretary at his word in the Commons and that Dr Fox would need to clarify his statements to MPs if a mistake had been made.

He said: "As far as I can see this is excellent news for the navy and the shipbuilding industry.

"It would have been absurd to build two carriers and then leave one of them unable to launch or land fast jets.

"The government are to be congratulated for recognising the error in their previous position and for being willing to change their mind."
So, Fox is saying more than once that "the plan" IS for both to get catapults & arresting gear, but the MOD says "not right now".

On another forum it was suggested that the bottom line is they do want both to get cats/traps but they only have funding secured for the one so can't announce it (hence the 'that is the plan' and 'private assurance' statements)... perhaps the second set will only be purchased in time for QE's first refit.

This fits in with the "Whether to equip the other carrier with them will be a decision for the 2015 SDSR." line as well.


We will have to see which side wins out.
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Old 21st Jul 2011, 05:13
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Originally Posted by Modern Elmo
I expect that part of of the USS America's aviation deck will be water cooled in a similar manner, so as to cope with V-22 and STOVL F-35 hot exhaust. The USS America will probably also have tilt-up blast deflectors like the one in the photo at the link posted above.
I haven't read anything about installing JBDs on the LHA(R) class... as per the illo you posted earlier, the plan is for rolling take-offs using nearly the whole length of the flight deck, thus there would be no aircraft spotted behind the departing F-35B, thus no need to deflect the exhaust away from it.

The other purpose of the JBD is for protecting the flight deck from heating during pre-launch run-up... but as the F-35B's hot exhaust is directed aft, not partially downward (as with the F-4 Phantom), this is also not needed.


As for landing, the primary problem with the hot exhaust and the deck was with true vertical landings. The USMC has continued the RVL* research & development the RN started, not only to increase bring-back weight but to also reduce deck heating by eliminating the "one area gets sustained hot exhaust" associated with true vertical landings.

Therefore, there would be less need for any special cooled deck sections... improved heat/blast resistant deck coatings will likely be sufficient.


*rolling vertical landing
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Old 21st Jul 2011, 09:24
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Gound runs are usually the biggest problem. Whilst they can mitigate the moving aspects of the aircraft operation, how will they mitigate the chained down high powered ground run?

When the GR7A was introduced into UK service, the Invincible class had to have all the deckheads on 2 deck stripped out and extra fire/soundproofing put in along with stronger lashing points. The deck still got warped and the noise underneath a run was quite intolerable!
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Old 21st Jul 2011, 10:45
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Maybe Mr Ward will flog us a few sheets of this stuff?

Starlite, the nuclear blast-defying plastic that could change the world - Telegraph
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Old 21st Jul 2011, 14:21
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"The USMC has continued the RVL* research & development the RN started, not only to increase bring-back weight but to also reduce deck heating by eliminating the "one area gets sustained hot exhaust" associated with true vertical landings."

Mr Boffin to the thread, please
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Old 21st Jul 2011, 18:58
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I haven't read anything about installing JBDs on the LHA(R) class... as per the illo you posted earlier, the plan is for rolling take-offs using nearly the whole length of the flight deck, thus there would be no aircraft spotted behind the departing F-35B, thus no need to deflect the exhaust away from it.

They are going to back the airplanes up all the way to the stern to start the takeoff roll? Maybe, OK ... Stern of the aircraft at ship's stern, exhaust nozzle horizontal... No need for jet blast deflectors.

Also wonder if afterburner will be needed for heavy gross weight takeoffs?

I'm thinking that a hold back/wheel chocking mechanism may be be needed to hold an F-35 as its engine spools up and the aviator ticks off some checklist items, even if blast deflectors aren't used.

Question for knowledgable Harrier person: what is the standard procedure for a ski jump takeoff? Set jet exhaust horizontal, and mash down on the rudder pedals/brakes as the engine spins up to X percent of nominal full throttle? Do the brakes hold to 100 percent standard power?

Another also: Heating the deck too hot is probably more of an issue for V-22 than for F-35. V-22 cannot rotate propulsion pods to horizontal if wheels are extended. But please, I'm sure the Navy has thought of this, so no need to worry that the deck's going to melt.
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