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Royal Navy Problems

Old 28th May 2020, 11:02
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Royal Navy Problems

The latest edition of "British Warships & Auxiliaries" is out and the introduction, as usual, has a long ish op-ed piece by a well known naval writer.

Much of it is already known but I was surprised by the list of concerns the latest one has - they include:-

1. The absence of plans to fit SAM defence to the carriers

2. The need for in flight refueling for the F-35's ( a well discussed issue re the USN but first time I've seen it mentioned with regard to the RN)

3. Exactly which vessel the Merlin HC4's wil operate from

4. The concentration of vessels in CSG21 - Carier, 2 x T45 (out of 6) , 2 ASW T23's (out of 8), 1 SSN (out of 6 currently in operation) and a supply vessel

5. T45 Daring has been in Portsmouth harbour since 2017 as a training ship and will go into refit in early 2021 for at least 12 months - when she comes out she will have been out of front line service for at least 5 years

6. T45's still have no cruise missile capability and Harpoon is almost obsolescent

7. T26 's are now 1.3 Bn each and taking 2 years to build - no new ASW frigates until 2027 at the earliest

8. The RN only holds a stock of 60 Tomahawks for reasons no-one seems to understand.

9. The latest (4th) Astute SSN has been delayed by over 18 months due to "emergent technical issues" - this delay will push back further SSN's and the SSBN programme. The RN currently has 3 Astutes and 3 Trafalgar's in commission.

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Old 28th May 2020, 11:13
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Diddums,

The carriers didn’t get SAM because the RN insisted that was why they needed the T45s.

The RN got the carriers and the F-35s because they said they didn’t need AAR, which requires CTOL.

The RN got the RAF Merlins because they said they’d fit on their ships.

The concentration of almost all the rest of RN into one CTG was forecast when they asked for the carriers and it was pointed out that would be the inevitable result within their forecast budget. Which also accounts for points 5, 6 and 8......

Last edited by ORAC; 28th May 2020 at 11:33.
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Old 28th May 2020, 11:27
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Indeed, indeed - and on the RN Carrier thread many of us have pointed out some of the issues for a considerable time

but now chickens are coming home to roost - and at a very bad time for asking for more...............

PS The article refers to the MQ-25 as a possible answer to the refueling issue - but doesn't that need cats and traps at sea?
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Old 28th May 2020, 11:42
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Yes it does. The RN could of course consider the V-22 fitted with VARS, but that's even more money.......

p.s. Looking at the burner, I wonder if he was watching the gauges to see if he was actually gaining.....

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Old 28th May 2020, 12:13
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Originally Posted by ORAC View Post
Yes it does. The RN could of course consider the V-22 fitted with VARS, but that's even more money.......

p.s. Looking at the burner, I wonder if he was watching the gauges to see if he was actually gaining.....

That's photo-shopped why would you have both aircraft in a STOVL mode to refuel? Photos at the link below of dry hook-ups with a Hornet.

https://www.marinecorpstimes.com/new...tanker-option/
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Old 28th May 2020, 12:49
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Grrr UK RN Problems

I do hope that the OP appreciates that there is actually only one "Royal Navy", irrespective of its acknowledged problems and of course the existence of other navies using the prefix "Royal".

Jack


Fixed

SPlot
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Old 28th May 2020, 13:11
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But of course!!

Actually I started out just using the "RN" in the title but then remembered tahat, on another thread, I was carpeted by the Mods (God Bless Them!) for forgetting that PPRuNe is a multi-national Forum with people all over the world . So to avoid another spell on the naughty step I thought I'd better add "UK".
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Old 28th May 2020, 13:13
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Originally Posted by ORAC View Post
Yes it does. The RN could of course consider the V-22 fitted with VARS, but that's even more money.......

p.s. Looking at the burner, I wonder if he was watching the gauges to see if he was actually gaining.....

has some good imagery - but at $ 70 mm ++ a pop I can imagine the Treasury would suggest using a local airport on land to refuel.

w
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Old 28th May 2020, 15:34
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Originally Posted by Asturias56 View Post
But of course!!

Actually I started out just using the "RN" in the title but then remembered tahat, on another thread, I was carpeted by the Mods (God Bless Them!) for forgetting that PPRuNe is a multi-national Forum with people all over the world . So to avoid another spell on the naughty step I thought I'd better add "UK".
In which case I can't wait to see you referring to the UK RAF and see how far that gets you when you make one of your forays into the Military Aviation thread. I don't actually believe that any "blessed" Moderator, or indeed anyone who genuinely comes from within the community defined at the top of the page, would have objected to the omission of "UK", especially since the fifth word of your post is "British".

Jack
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Old 28th May 2020, 16:17
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Jack

Whatever it's called in my post it doesn't change the problems flagged by someone (Chris Cope - who has won prizes for his military journalism) who has spent years studying the RN - that surely is the issue here? Addressing some of the problems will cost serious money - and where that will come from has got to be a concern.



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Old 28th May 2020, 20:09
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Originally Posted by ORAC View Post
The RN got the RAF Merlins because they said they’d fit on their ships.
They do, the same as the original RN Merlins do. Unless you can point to a ship they don't fit on I don't believe that's the issue, the question is where is the best place in the task group to put them?
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Old 28th May 2020, 22:08
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Originally Posted by Asturias56 View Post
Jack

Whatever it's called in my post it doesn't change the problems flagged by someone (Chris Cope - who has won prizes for his military journalism) who has spent years studying the RN - that surely is the issue here? Addressing some of the problems will cost serious money - and where that will come from has got to be a concern.
No wonder the Hamlet quotation, "The lady doth protest too much, methinks" comes to mind! Having spent more years in the Royal Navy, both above and below the waves, than I suspect Chris Cope has spent studying it, I'm only too well aware of the major issues concerned. What you now appear to be saying is that it doesn't matter if you, as a someone who has ducked questions about your own background at least twice to my knowledge, feels that it is perfectly acceptable to identify the Senior Service inaccurately, and I am saying perfectly politely that it does, particularly on this forum.

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Old 28th May 2020, 22:25
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Flight international routinely refers to the 'UK Royal Air Force' which is a bit irritating.....
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Old 28th May 2020, 22:52
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Originally Posted by Bing View Post
They do, the same as the original RN Merlins do. Unless you can point to a ship they don't fit on I don't believe that's the issue, the question is where is the best place in the task group to put them?
Maybe the best place to put them.. HMS Ocean..
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Old 29th May 2020, 06:54
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Originally Posted by Parson View Post
Flight international routinely refers to the 'UK Royal Air Force' which is a bit irritating.....
Its off topic but Flight really needs a sub-editor who speaks English - things like "inked an agreement" drive me nuts...............
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Old 29th May 2020, 06:59
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Originally Posted by Bing View Post
They do, the same as the original RN Merlins do. Unless you can point to a ship they don't fit on I don't believe that's the issue, the question is where is the best place in the task group to put them?
Bing - that' seems to be the issue - but perhaps you could shed some light on why it's even a question. Surely they should fly off the carrier? Or am I missing something?
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Old 29th May 2020, 07:16
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Originally Posted by Out Of Trim View Post
Maybe the best place to put them.. HMS Ocean..
I thought that had been sold to Brazil?
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Old 29th May 2020, 09:51
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Your surprise is a surprise, given the number of times you seem to comment on naval matters.

One might just as easily amend to....

Originally Posted by Asturias56 View Post
The latest edition of "British Warships & Auxiliaries" is out and the introduction, as usual, has a long ish op-ed piece by a well known naval writer.

Much of it is already known but I was surprised by the list of concerns the latest one has - they include:-

1. The absence of plans to fit SAM defence to the carriers to RAF stations or for mobile Army units

2. The need for in flight refueling for the F-35's ( a well discussed issue re the USN but first time I've seen it mentioned with regard to the RN) a large proportion of the RAF "heavy" fleet (C17, RC135, P8, E7)

3. Exactly which vessel the Merlin HC4's wil operate from role the A400M fills and what will replace C130J which was unexpectedly extended because the Atlas could not meet the requirement

4. The concentration of vessels in CSG21 - Carier, 2 x T45 (out of 6) , 2 ASW T23's (out of 8), 1 SSN (out of 6 currently in operation) and a supply vessel is perfectly normal for a carrier strike group and significantly more powerful and effective than a singleton DD/FF. By contrast, a USN CVBG would generally have 4 or 5 CG/DDG from a total of 80 ish hulls. For 10 carriers, that's about 50-60% of available hulls. Doesn't actually work like that, but four ships from 19 isn't earth-shattering either.

5. T45 Daring has been in Portsmouth harbour since 2017 as a training ship and will go into refit in early 2021 for at least 12 months - when she comes out she will have been out of front line service for at least 5 years. This is less than the length of time that ZH105, one of only seven E3D operated by the RAF spent as a spares reclamation/GI asset at Waddo. The other T45 remain in service, unlike the 4 of the RAF E3 fleet (several years before service entry of E7) which are withdrawn. The army has similar numbers of its AFV fleet stored inactive.

6. T45's still have no cruise missile capability and Harpoon is almost obsolescent. Can't find endorsed requirement for T45 cruise missile. Just like I can't find endorsed requirement for Typhoon launched extreme range anti--AWACS missile or A400M MOAB. Or Army Tactical nuclear missile system.

7. T26 's are now 1.3 Bn each and taking 2 years to build - no new ASW frigates until 2027 at the earliest. Displays a charming ignorance. A T26 takes the best part of six years to build (could be quicker, but that's the EP). A little like F35 being built up in increments limited by EP or no new AEW aircraft until "early 2020s".

8. The RN only holds a stock of 60 Tomahawks for reasons no-one seems to understand. Possibly because there's a limited number of firing platforms? A bit like the RAF only holding a limited number of Storm Shadow. Or the Army only having a limited number of MLRS systems.

9. The latest (4th) Astute SSN has been delayed by over 18 months due to "emergent technical issues" - this delay will push back further SSN's and the SSBN programme. The RN currently has 3 Astutes and 3 Trafalgar's in commission.
Audacious now commissioned, albeit not operational. C19 will have a more significant effect on follow-on boats. A bit like A400M, or god help us FRES/Boxer/whatever its called this week....

So no different to rest of HM armed forces then. You just chose to highlight the RN for some unfathomable reason.
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Old 29th May 2020, 10:13
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Asturia, the point is that CHF have normally had dedicated 'phibs to fly off. Back in the day 'Commando Carriers' such as Albion/Bulwark and LPDs (Fearless/Intrepid) gave them a lot of deck spots. Until recently with Ocean and the 'new' Albion/Bulwark, the LitM capability looked pretty good for a country of our size, albeit the latter two have constrained flight decks. With Ocean gone (to Brazil) and no direct replacement, the onus falls to the two Albion class ships. Whilst large and capable vessels, neither has a flight deck the size of Ocean so require careful 'lily-padding' and planning to effect an assault and the Merlin simply doesn't deliver anything like the punch per deck spot of the Chinook, nor can carry several of the RM's kit in a combat configuration for any meaningful distance. Albion/Bulwark also sit under the near constant threat of the 'chop' - publicly announced as being due to the financial/manpower pressure of the Carriers, hence why much was said of PoW being finished and operated as an LPH. The bald fact is that the RN has mortgaged it's 'phibs and DD/FFs to fund their capital ships and now, probably, would struggle to deploy an adequately escorted CSG and ATG concurrently. Blue water Fish-heads don't really care about LitM, and would trade the capability to preserve Carrier Strike in a heartbeat.
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Old 29th May 2020, 11:50
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Originally Posted by Asturias56 View Post
Bing - that' seems to be the issue - but perhaps you could shed some light on why it's even a question. Surely they should fly off the carrier? Or am I missing something?

That depends, if it's for CSG 21 I suspect as per Westlant 19 they'll only be taking a couple of Merlin Mk4 for intra-task group lift etc. At that point do you keep them on the carrier taking up room and getting in the way of the precious that is the F-35, or do you put them on another ship in the Task Group, e.g. Fort Victoria which can take several.
If you're deploying as an Amphibious Task Group then you just put them on the carrier.
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