HMS Queen Elizabeth and her Carrier Strike Group pulled into Apra Harbor in the midst of the CSG21 deployment this week.

The U.S. Navy say here that the deployment is the UK’s first by a carrier strike group in the Indo-Pacific for almost 25 years and “marks a historic achievement in the bilateral partnership between the U.S. and UK”.

“CSG21 is a prime example of the powerful partnerships we have, not just with our neighbors in this region, but around the world,” said Rear Adm. Benjamin Nicholson, commander, Joint Region Marianas.

“The U.K. is one of our most stalwart and skilled allies, and their participation in our exercises and operations in the Pacific is a demonstration of the deep relationship we share in terms of defense and deterrence of our adversaries.”

HMS Queen Elizabeth sailing her Carrier Strike Group.

“The arrival of the Carrier Strike Group in Guam is an important milestone for CSG21,” said Commodore Steve Moorhouse, commander of the United Kingdom Carrier Strike Group.

“Since we left the UK in May, our journey has taken us from the familiar waters of the Atlantic, through the Mediterranean, across the Indian Ocean and into the Western Pacific. During this time we have undertaken exercises and engagements with more than 20 nations,” Moorhouse added.

“Our visit to Guam provides an opportunity for some much deserved rest and recreation. We are grateful to the U.S. Navy for the use of their facilities and we look forward to exploring this beautiful Pacific Island.”

The Carrier Strike Group, not shown is an Astute class submarine that’s part of the group.

Capt. Mike Luckett, Naval Base Guam commanding officer, was quoted as saying:

“The deployment of Carrier Strike Group 21 is an incredible and historic milestone for both the Royal Navy and the U.S. Navy, highlighting the interoperability and global reach of our combined forces, as we work together with our allies and partners towards our shared interest in a free and open rules-based order. It marks the culmination of nearly 10 years of carrier cooperation between the U.S. and UK defense establishments and demonstrates the depth of our bilateral defense relationship. U.S. Naval Base Guam is proud to host our allies for this historic visit, which is a vital reminder of Guam’s strategic importance in the Western Pacific.”

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Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago

Just thinking is this the biggest deployment for the RN in the Pacific since the Eagles last tango ?

AV
AV
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

If viewed from the perspective and size of the actual sovereign air wing probably not. Otherwise when looked at from the naval tonnage and capability point, I’d say almost certainly.

farouk
farouk
2 months ago

Silly question time. When a ship lies up, are there fittings which allows the ship to:
1) Take on water
2) Take on power
3) Take on fuel
4) Clear its sewage?

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
2 months ago
Reply to  farouk

Alongside a pier , jetty or at anchor – Shore power can be provided via shore power lines to a Shore power connection box. the power comes from either a dedicated supply in the pier or jetty or rented in Gensets placed on the jetty or sometimes a barge (if at anchor). For a T23 and T45 there are 2 boxes , 1 x Fwd and 1 x Aft. A T23 usually takes 600 Amps, 440V on each box. This allows the ship to shut down its Gensets although one usually remains on immediate standby to flash up in an… Read more »

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
2 months ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

OMG that’s is absolutely roasting. I take it you get used to it after a period of acclimatisation? It was 25c in Scotland recently and outside in the sun I thought I was going to melt lol. Keep up the good work out there.

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
2 months ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

My last job in the RN involved 3 1/2 years in the Land of Sand where the fun police do not let you have any fun. I was given an offer I couldn’t refuse so retired and started work in the land of Sand next door where you can have loads of fun!. Having been here for for 6 + years my 10 years out here have made me used to it.

My house AC unit is set to 26 degs and I think that is cold!

Robert Blay.
Robert Blay.
2 months ago
Reply to  farouk

Yes to all 4. Dockyards that can take such vessels have shoreside power generators, bit like aircraft using ground power before start up.

Order of the Ditch
Order of the Ditch
2 months ago
Reply to  farouk

The need to take on water and discharge sewage in port is slim to none.
QE will have a desalination plant (most probably reverse osmosis) allowing her to make tonnes of fresh water a day at sea. In addition a sewage treatment plant will allow her to discharge sewage at sea. Other than during refit I am not aware of any warship running on shore power, they usually just run a generator or two.

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
2 months ago

500 tons a day if I remember rightly.

Cheers CR

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
2 months ago

Well… Where to begin… Every port visit involves water and sewage pumping… Every port visit. I recently delivered nearly 1000t of fresh water to a RFA ship alongside in just one week and it all came by tanker . This was in addition to the regular deliveries of 45 T per day for the crew. It also had 4 x gensets running with 2 on standby to allow it to come off its own gensets. If its own gensets are on then you need a full watch and cannot do maintenance on the engines due to HV restrictions. Alongside a… Read more »

Bluemoonday
Bluemoonday
2 months ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Strangely fascinating!
Any idea on the total power output required from the generators for the QE when alongside? How much power would she potentially need available?

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
2 months ago
Reply to  Bluemoonday

You need to differentiate between peak power, for transient use, and continuous baseline use. Most commercial gensets will, for instance, support say 440V 300A continuous with an ability to surge to say 600A for 90 seconds to cover transient loads. As the total load becomes bigger the need for such a big transient ratio generally becomes less as the loads tend to average out more and become less significant as an overall proportion of load. Again it depends how the load is being fed in and how much of the ships, these days very sophisticated, HV system is running to… Read more »

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
2 months ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

There is also the issue of it being simply cheaper to buy grid power, in most places, and mains/tanker water than to try and make it on the ship.

Even if you are running land side gensets you don’t care about the hours you put on those as they are not buried deep in the ship. And as they tend to be more modern they are more efficient and quieter.

RO is pretty energy intensive.

If you are fortunate enough to have a black water connection then that is cheaper too. Although as @GB says it is most likely tanker.

Quentin D63
Quentin D63
2 months ago

Does anyone know if the CSG is going to be visiting Sydney on the way back? It would be a great sight to have them all in the Sydney harbour here.

Quentin D63
Quentin D63
2 months ago
Reply to  Quentin D63

And any further news on the additional defensive armaments going on the carriers. 30mm, 40mm, Camm? If they added another 12 Camm to the T31s maybe their forward 40mm’s could then be transferred to the carriers?

Adrian
Adrian
2 months ago
Reply to  Quentin D63

I highly doubt they’ll be equipping 40mm naval guns to carriers – given they barely have room for a VLS system (hangar space), and I know the Italians have done it – but attaching serious naval guns to a carrier just doesn’t strike me as Britain’s style. I’m not sure what use they’d be either – unless they’re able to function reliably in a CIWS role. The defensive systems for the carriers are an ongoing debate, with plenty of people either defending the strength of the ships, or arguing that nothing less then the standard set by the American’s –… Read more »

AlexS
AlexS
2 months ago
Reply to  Adrian

New Indian carrier – which had some Italian influence – will have:

64x Barak 8
4x 76 Oto Melara
4x AK 630

Quentin D63
Quentin D63
2 months ago
Reply to  AlexS

Jeepers…. seriously… are we underdone or what?

Frank62
Frank62
2 months ago
Reply to  Adrian

Modern 40mm bofors have a much longer range than the 20mm Phalanx & yes, have great CIWS capabilities. 76mm OTO even longer AA/anti misile ciws range.

Robert Blay.
Robert Blay.
2 months ago
Reply to  Quentin D63

I think they are due to be fitted with 4 x DS30M Mk2’s at the next capability insertion. But that could be wrong.

Paul.P
Paul.P
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay.

Do you know if the DS30M Mk2 can use the sort of ammunition that would make it a valid alternative to Phalanx?

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
2 months ago
Reply to  Paul.P

Hi Paul.P,

My understanding is that the smallest caliber that smart fused ammunition goes down to is 40mm. The DS30M is really intended to stop small boats, UAV,s and helicopters in and around harbours.

Cheers CR

Paul.P
Paul.P
2 months ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

Just wondering; cheers.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
2 months ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

The mounts can take 20/30/40mm barrels interchangeably according to the manufacturers blurb. So if the need arose then it would be a pretty simple swap out. OK before @GB pops up nothing is plug-‘n-play. The questions as always are what (are RN defending from / what else can cover that tasking) and why (is it needed)? Otherwise you just end up with Soviet era ships bristling with every weapon you can think of and a chicken coup. Simplify and focus on the essential tasks of each ship. My **guess** is that there was some thinking about the adequacy of the… Read more »

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
2 months ago

Hi Supportive Bloke, Thanks for that, I had forgotten they could carry different barrels, although not sure if they would be able to fire the 3P smart rounds. As I understand it there needs to be a ‘signal’ sent to the round before firing i.e. as goes in to or when it is in the breech I think. So there is also the need to fit some electronic stuff as well. I think the RN will stick with the 30mm as most vessels that carry them also carry other weapons for dealing with higher value threats. However, in general I… Read more »

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
2 months ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

No worries. I too agree that 40mm is unlikely but not impossible and will probably depend on the cost of the ammunition. The ammunition selection programming would be done autonomously by the the CMS via the data cables already in place. There is an extra module and a few bits required to program the ammunition before firing. There was an online brochure kicking around that I saw a few years back. I think the main thing that 40mm has over 30mm is reach and programmability. As well as potentially cheapness if you can auto select dumb rounds for low value… Read more »

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
2 months ago
Reply to  Paul.P

I’m not sure Paul. I doubt it, others will know better than me 👍

Paul.P
Paul.P
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

Google found one or two articles to suggest that Northrop Grumman were investigating the possibility but no evidence it exists.

Rudeboy1
Rudeboy1
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay.

The DS30’s have been delivered from MSI but are not being installed apparently. Not sure why, but the plans to do so have been shelved.

Richard B
Richard B
2 months ago
Reply to  Rudeboy1

The upgraded Phalanx 1B CIWS can fulfil the short-range ship protection role against small fast attack that was originally envisaged as requiring separate light cannon – specifically the 30mm Automated Small Calibre Gun (ASCG) in the guise of the MDI-DSL 30 mm Calibre Gun System. Not fitting the ASCGs to the QEC will have saved on both crew numbers and maintenance/support/operating costs. However the 4 guns ordered for Big Lizzie at just over £1m apiece were delivered years ago (2019?) to the MoD and are sitting in storage.  Possibly these will eventually be fitted to the FSS ships – particularly as these won’t… Read more »

Quentin D63
Quentin D63
2 months ago
Reply to  Rudeboy1

Are these DS30s twin feed or the single type? I just feel it would be for carriers to have some surround back up to the Phalanx’s for fast incoming missiles out to at least 3km and if with 40mm’s maybe double that?

Paul.P
Paul.P
2 months ago
Reply to  Quentin D63

I think swapping out a 40mm for 12 more Sea Ceptors would be a poor exchange. Although the 40mm has only about 1/2 the range of Sea Ceptor it has a lot more destructive power against all targets; AShM, drones and FIAC. Sea Ceptor’s main advantage is its ability to provide limited area defence capability; to take out threats to other vessels. I’m guessing, but I suspect the RN don’t see that as a role for T31 and have optimised its armament for self defence.
https://www.baesystems.com/en-media/uploadFile/20210407061338/1434555371622.pdf

Last edited 2 months ago by Paul.P
geoff
geoff
2 months ago

Wonderful to see the RN restore this powerful and symbolic capability but without wishing to be a party pooper, the reality is that if we were to be caught up in another Falklands type scenario, the losses sustained during that campaign would be unsustainable for the fleet as it stands. We had a pool of 57 frigates and destroyers then against 17 now, so the most urgent task for Boris is to accelerate by whatever means, the restoration of a viable escort fleet

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
2 months ago
Reply to  geoff

Things have moved on since the Falklands mostly because of the hard lessons learned in the Falklands. It is not a valid comparison to use. You may as well compare the equipment and number of ships we had in the Falklands to what the RN had in WW2 …How did we manage to retake the Falklands without the hundreds of ships at the RNs disposal on the 1940s? WW2 to the Falklands – 40 Year gap. Falklands to now – 40 Year gap. You cannot compare the tactics used down south or the weapon systems on a like for like… Read more »

Nate M
Nate M
2 months ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

interesting. Vulcans could use the shrikes, however since the tornados retired has there been any RAF or Fleet air arms aircraft that could use anti-radiation missile.

Last edited 2 months ago by Nate M
ChariotRider
ChariotRider
2 months ago
Reply to  Nate M

Hi Nate,

Everyone is moving away from anti-radiation homing missiles and instead using systems like Brimstone. Simply programme in the shape of the radar (and vehicles) you want to hit and send off on its way. This approach will still do the business even if the radar switches off.

Also with the SPEAR 3 missile there is the soft kill / jamming EW variant becoming available.

Cheers CR

DaveyB
DaveyB
2 months ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

HI CR, not completely. The US Navy in particular like anti-radiation missiles. They have heavily invested in the new AGM-88G Advanced Anti-Radiation Guided Missile-Extended Range (AARGM-ER). This can purportedly travel at Mach 4 for a distance of 300km, as it has a much larger rocket motor than the earlier version of HARM. It also carries a millimetric radar that has similar capabilities to the Brimstone/Spear radar. See the link below: https://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zone/41798/first-live-fire-test-of-navys-new-long-range-anti-radiation-missile-was-a-success It cannot be carried in the F35B internal bay (too big), but would fit on the wing pylons. It will primarily be used by F/A18E/F and EA-18Gs. They also… Read more »

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
2 months ago
Reply to  DaveyB

Hi DaveyB, Thanks for that I was not aware of that programme. The introduction of the millimetric radar moves it away from the single mode ARM’s which I believe are now illegal. I seem to remember that as they often failed to find target and simply ended up lying in a field somewhere they were covered by a new convention on ‘landmines’. Something to do with the design didn’t lead automatically to a big bang, I can’t remember the details, but I am pretty sure that was the main reason airforces moves away from HARM and ALARM. I was not… Read more »

DaveyB
DaveyB
2 months ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

Hi mate, no worries. The ban on ARMs does sound familiar, now that you mention it. I know Storm Shadow will either go to a secondary target or head for a “safe” area then suicide. I’ll need to check but if cruise or guided weapons don’t have a self destruct sequence when they miss the target does that mean they fall under the same cluster munition/mine category? I do feel at times the US shoot themselves in the foot and miss out on golden opportunities. They’ve declined to purchase Brimstone in the past due to lobbying from Lockheed Martin because… Read more »

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
2 months ago
Reply to  DaveyB

HI DaveB,

The problem of cross equipping F35’s with each others weapons might not be such a problem. Firstly, I believe RAF and USMC pilots have flown each others aircraft to prove the point, not such that they do it routinely, but I am pretty sure I remember it being reported.

Secondly, the Times reports there being 4 flight simulators on board HMS QE. So should be relatively easy to at least teach the basics if required. I bet they have been sitting in on each other sims anyway.

Cheers CR

DaveyB
DaveyB
2 months ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

Cheers, that makes perfect sense.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
2 months ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

Or send it in to take out a GPS coordinate of where other assets have identified the main radar/radio kits as being – as opposed to the aerial – which is the other problem with AARM: the aerial can be connected to a long cable and it usually is for precisely these reasons. So you end up using an expensive missile to kill a pretty simple cheap bit of kit while the expensive stuff and crew as still intact and simply switch to aerial #2 or #3.

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
2 months ago

Hi Supportive Bloke,

True enough its been a ‘standard’ practice for high threat areas for about 30 years I believe. However, those aerials have got a lot more sophisticated and expensive in that time to be fair. Still better than loosing the CIC vehicle and crew.

Cheers CR

DaveyB
DaveyB
2 months ago

That’s one of the reasons why much like Brimstone/Spear-3, it has a millimetric radar. Which is operating in the V or W band. The higher frequency increases resolution. To the extent that the radar can produce pretty realistic high definition images similar to black and white photos. The other advantage is that it can see through foliage. Having these attributes means if the radar has been turned off, plus it has a two way data-link. The controller can retarget the missile depending on what the radar maps, be it the control truck or a generator.

Nate M
Nate M
2 months ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

I know that spear 3 has some SEAD capabilities but can it be used an anti-radiation missile.

DaveyB
DaveyB
2 months ago
Reply to  Nate M

Possibly, it uses a very high frequency (millimetric) radar. The radar homing will depend on the bandwidth of the radar’s receiver. The Spear-EW definitely can, as it’s equipped with a digital radio frequency memory (DRFM) receiver. This allows it to not only lock on to a radar emission, but also to mirror it or manipulate it. Thus it will cause the radar to be jammed or spoofed (displaying false targets). It has a limited loitering ability which is governed by the release point and distance it has to travel. But it can also perform a kinetic kill, by suiciding into… Read more »

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
2 months ago
Reply to  Nate M

Hi Nate M, Following on from what DaveB has said, the main approach to SEAD and DEAD is to employ smart weapon capabilities that can target known vehicle types be it a tank (the initial target set for Brimstone) or elements of a SAM battery or C2 system. Basically, using ESM systems you can identify and locate pretty much anything that emitts. You can confirm with recce assets if you need to which is increasingly being done by autonomous vehicles, and then you can hit them with suitably programmed smart weapons such as Brimstone / SPEAR 3. If the target… Read more »

Peter S
Peter S
2 months ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Exocet fitted to RN ships in 1982? Or did you mean fired at RN ships? Your comments on the improvements in technology are otherwise correct. But that doesn’t invalidate the concern many have about inadequate numbers. The CSG graphic shows the kind of escort that would be needed in times of real threat: 3 destroyers, 3 frigates ( including guests). We have 2 carriers and plan 2 LRGs that will also need protection. For the next decade, we will have no more than18 destroyers and frigates or even fewer, allowing for those in major refit. Plans have already been announced… Read more »

Steve P
Steve P
2 months ago
Reply to  Peter S

Yes, Exocet MM38 (or “Guided Weapon System 50” in RN terminology) was fitted to many of the Royal Navy surface units in the South Atlantic in 1982, including Leander Class & Type 21 frigates, Type 22 frigates, and GMD’s HMS Antrim & HMS Glamorgan. Each ship carried four MM38 missiles. However the sinking of ARA Belgrano by a submarine-launched torpedo sent the Argentine surface fleet back to home waters and hence we never had the opportunity to use GWS50 in any surface-to-surface actions.

AlexS
AlexS
2 months ago
Reply to  Peter S

“Exocet fitted to RN ships in 1982?”

Yes, County class, Type 21, Type 22

Peter
Peter
2 months ago
Reply to  AlexS

And Leander…..

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago
Reply to  Peter S

T21, Exocet Leander’s, T22’s batches 1 and 2 all had Exocet Peter.

T22 Batch 1’s, T21’s and a few Leander all in South Atlantic in 82.

Last edited 2 months ago by Daniele Mandelli
ChariotRider
ChariotRider
2 months ago
Reply to  Peter S

HI Peter, I agree with your final point, but the situation is even worse than just the RN. When the USN met up with CSG21 in the Indian Ocean, I think it was, the US carrier had 1 (one) destroyer and the same went for the Amphibious Group that was present, so thin is the USN escort fleet. They have between 90 and 100 escorts (discounting the Littoral Combat Ships) to escort 5 ish ready carrier, plus a similar number of amphibs, spread spread around globally. Remember, 50% of so of the US escort fleet will be in maintenance or… Read more »

Netking
Netking
2 months ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

It is true that the USN sometimes deploy 1 DDG with a carrier but that argument ignores a crucial point. The USN can surge the number of escorts if necessary. The RN will lack this ability for at least the next decade at best. As an example the USS Vinson just out of retrofit is deploying with 6 DDGs and a Tico. No one expects the RN or any other navy(except maybe China) for that matter to be able to match those numbers but it is imo critical to increase the number of escorts asap to protect these impressive carriers.

Last edited 2 months ago by Netking
Gunbuster
Gunbuster
2 months ago
Reply to  Netking

They will struggle to surge Ticos. They are not in a good place with those at present. Old hulls that are cracking, old machinery, old electronics…they are clinging on with there Tico fingertips until AB Flight 3 come online and can take over the duties.

netking
netking
2 months ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

No doubt about that. My guess is they will continue to pump out the AB Flight 3s for at least another decade as it seems they can’t quite decide what the requirements are for the DDG(X)program.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky
2 months ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

Not saying you are strategically wrong but we have to remember the Battle of the Atlantic in WW2 was especially crucial indeed war winning/losing because Britain had no access to Europe or to Africa and beyond via Europe, we were totally reliant upon sea access. Fact is if we are in that situation again the war would already have been lost on this side of the Atlantic whatever the size of our navy.

James
James
2 months ago
Reply to  Peter S

What scenario in the next 10 years would we be able to launch 2 highly equipped carriers to respond to a threat?

As a worst case both could be thinly equipped with air frames and helicopters but they would both sail as a single group using what escorts 1 carrier would need to cover 2.

Peter S
Peter S
2 months ago
Reply to  James

We are in a bit of a mess with the carriers. The F35 is proving too expensive to buy and operate to allow us to get anything like the original planned fleet. Now the hope is to fit EMALS and flesh out with affordable drones.
If we were to use both carriers at the same time, I imagine we would need double the escort protection of a single carrier.
The trouble is that the carriers themselves have almost no self defence armament so are almost entirely dependent on escorts.

James
James
2 months ago
Reply to  Peter S

F35 price is dropping quite regularly the main reason other than money we dont have more is they arent of a certain capability yet, which I totally agree with not buying more of them quicker until they are of a certain capability. Why buy more now to then spend even more money later altering them? Drones are inevitable, no way of avoiding them and again its probably going to be an excuse not to buy lots more F35 later as they wont be needed. Adding a second carrier to a single CSG would probably only require a couple more escorts… Read more »

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
2 months ago
Reply to  James

None to be honest, but they are going to be around for 50 years, hopefully.

Cheers CR

Dern
Dern
2 months ago
Reply to  Peter S

I mean, the Type 31’s were never intended as CSG escorts anyway?

Peter S
Peter S
2 months ago
Reply to  Dern

Absolutely. But we have now committed to 2 LRGs which will need escorts. To me it seems a no brained to uparm the T31s so that they can undertake a wider range of operations.

Dern
Dern
2 months ago
Reply to  Peter S

Everything seems like a no brainer when you don’t have to consider the £’s behind it.

DaveyB
DaveyB
2 months ago
Reply to  Dern

They may not have been planned for being part of a CSG. But you can bet that if the cack hits the fan they will be. I would say there is a strong case for them to be used as goalkeeper ships operating alongside the carrier. Placed there to stop any leakers getting past the T45s. The T23/26s will be off hunting subs and the RFAs will only have point defences. Even though the ship has limited capability, it leans towards localised air defence. The 57 and 40 guns can do the job of a longer range CIWS and the… Read more »

Dern
Dern
2 months ago
Reply to  DaveyB

If the “cack” hits the fan there will still need to be an RN presence in places that the CSG won’t be. It was exactly the same during the Falklands and the World Wars.

DaveyB
DaveyB
2 months ago
Reply to  Dern

I agree. In an hour of need a task group will be made up with whatever is available. In 1982 we had a significantly larger fleet. Therefore, we could send a decent sized task group and still do our other commitments. Though we did have help with that. If we had prior warning and time, we would hopefully have the two T45s and two T23/26s. But that’s not always guaranteed when needed. At the moment we don’t really what the T32 will look like let alone its capabilities. Therefore, if a T31 is available and not on other duties, to… Read more »

Dern
Dern
2 months ago
Reply to  DaveyB

Well, you say you agree and then disagree. If you need to send a CSG, other tasks won’t go away, as I said it was exactly the same in the Falkland’s and during the World Wars: Task groups where created from the high end assets, while the second line assets where used to protect less important stations. If a CSG needs sending, then other tasking won’t go away either. If a Type 31 is available, it will not go with the CSG, it’ll go cover other taskings, because the alternative would be to send T26 or 45 on the other… Read more »

DaveyB
DaveyB
2 months ago
Reply to  Dern

You’re missing the point. We only have a finite number of ships. Some of which will be in various states of maintenance, from a quick kick of paint to planned modifications like the T45s PIP project. Other ships will be off on pre-planned tasks around the World.

So what I’m trying and clearly failing to communicate. Is that due to the lack of hulls, the RN will use whatever ships they have to hand. Therefore, if a T31 is not being used for policing tasks. Then it’s highly likely the Navy will send it.

Sjb1968
Sjb1968
2 months ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Your knowledge of modern naval warfare and the RN certainly outstrips mine but the pertinent point that Geoff made is the lack of numbers and whilst making comparisons between capabilities from different eras is dangerous the lack of numbers is frightening. We are still loosing hull numbers with 2 T23s and Sandowns the latest to go despite a growing Navy. Fine let’s loose some legacy platforms but with no replacements even laid down it is madness. I have also like others come to recognise that with the demise of the Hunts and Sandowns with small autonomous vessels any marginal increase… Read more »

Rudeboy1
Rudeboy1
2 months ago
Reply to  Sjb1968

You have to remember that the RN may have had lots of ‘escorts’ in 1982. But the majority were designed to operate only as ASW vessels under Allied air cover in the Cold War. And even then they were pathetically underarmed compared to USN vessels. The reality of 1982 was that the RN had 9 ‘Modern’ Destroyers (1 Type 82, HMS Bristol, and 8 x Type 42). However, only 2 of these had modern radars (the Batch 2 Type 42’s, HMS Exeter and HMS Southampton, although Southampton had to go in for repair following an accident). The RN also only… Read more »

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
2 months ago
Reply to  Rudeboy1

I would totally concur with your very realistic assessment.

In a way it was fortunate that so many floating targets were sent to confuse the Argentinians but a lot of them didn’t really have anything useful to offer other than NGFS: as you rightly say.

The thing that is most lacking ATM is NGFS as you wouldn’t want a T45 or T23/26ASW anywhere near that so you are left with 3/4 No T23 GP that are in service. Which given the magazine size is not that impressive……

Dern
Dern
2 months ago
Reply to  Sjb1968

Um, the first three replacements for the Type 23’s already have been laid down….

Bluemoonday
Bluemoonday
2 months ago
Reply to  Sjb1968

Times have changed my friend.
Of course more escorts are necessary, but the current economic reality for the RN and our allies is that we will have to make do. Comparing total hull numbers to those numbers of even a generation ago is not a valid method of evaluating overall strength. The modern warship is much more capable than even the boats they are replacing.

James
James
2 months ago
Reply to  Sjb1968

Realistically it was 1 T23 lost, the other was not in a useable condition and hadnt been for some time, it was never going to return to service with the RN.

The other one im sure some of the systems will be removed to be fitted to another coming ship which may have actually speeded up the introduction of a new platform.

Tom Keane
Tom Keane
2 months ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Hi … Moved on from the Falkland’s yes of course, but so has Argentina.
We do not have enough ships for the same type of gig.

We could probably field the same number of infantry, by combining units for a caper this size. We would need both carriers, even though we do not have enough aircraft to fill them. 1 Would probably play more of a role as transportation.

We would win, but I believe it would be the same slog as before, plus of course there would be the added hindrance of the 21st century ‘snowflake’ element of society.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
2 months ago
Reply to  Tom Keane

Looking at the Argentina military, they have not moved on very far from 1982.

Airborne
Airborne
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

Correct mate, they are currently, fortunatly, a bag of shite, all three services.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

I would respectfully suggest that they had moved backwards in terms of capabilities?

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
2 months ago

I think you are correct pal. 👍

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  Tom Keane

I don’t actually think Argentina has any capability left to repeat what they did in 82 and that was if the U.K. armed forces had stood still. But we did not and we have far more capability permanently based in the falklands than Argentinian could overcome. But if for some unforeseen reason the worst did occur. A couple of A class boats would close off Argentinian waters, with a couple of type 45s being able to do the same in the air domain. Even with its presently limited air wing, their is nothing in South America that could manage the… Read more »

DaveyB
DaveyB
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Imagine the S*** Storm, if after the conflict we asked for their half of Tierra Del Fuego as war reparations or else.

The Artist Formerly Known As Los Pollos Chicken
The Artist Formerly Known As Los Pollos Chicken
2 months ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Aye min You’d need to get outa bed very early to get any kind of up on you information wise even if you were to set your alarm for 0300hrs I very much doubt it would be possible😂 it’s like putting the ZX specy up against an Amiga 500

it’s still a fascinating challenge 😃👍🏻

🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿🇬🇧

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
2 months ago

I have a 2 hours time difference on the UK and am usually leaving for work before 0600 so I am up around 0430….

Andrew D
Andrew D
2 months ago
Reply to  geoff

Very well said Geoff 👍

Andy a
Andy a
2 months ago
Reply to  geoff

The fleet will never be that big again. Due to hi tech weapons the cost of cutting edge platforms is huge ie t45 1billion each. What this does mean is war has changed. It’s not just about numbers. Anyone we will be fighting will be badly out matched tech wise ie Argentina Iran North Korea. Any one that can afford a bigger fleet we will be fighting with allies.
yes the frigate fleet needs expanding but gone are the days when it was just the cost of steel, modern weapons are very expensive an RN always has the best!

geoff
geoff
2 months ago
Reply to  Andy a

Thanks Andy and all for comments above. I suppose what i was trying to say is the RN was able to absorb the loss of half a dozen major assets quite comfortably in the South atlantic and notwithstanding lessons learned from that campaign and huge advances in weaponry, these advances occur on both sides of the fence plus the’only in one place at a time’ rule would apply. Maybe what I mean is that the UK’s ability to operate alone in a middle order conflict has been affected and that, more so than in previous wars, we will need to… Read more »

Andy a
Andy a
2 months ago
Reply to  geoff

I know what your saying but if we struggle to field bigger navy so will they

Frank62
Frank62
2 months ago
Reply to  geoff

The truth is we only won by the skin of our teeth. Our ships were in dire need of repair & refit having been on station so long away from dock & the S Atlantic winter storms started just a few hours after the surrender was signed. That was Sandy Woodwoods assessment(Naval commander of the fleet there).
Let’s not forget the war was sparked by cuts to our S Atlantic presence which led the Argenties to believe we’d accept a coup de main.

Last edited 2 months ago by Frank62
geoff
geoff
2 months ago
Reply to  Frank62

Indeed Frank. I followed the campaign hour by hour from start to finish from my home in Durban and had to fight off some nasty and ill informed comments via some bitter Huguenot descended colonials from elsewhere in Africa deriding the performance of Britain’s Armed forces but the fact remains, it was an amazing victory considering the distances involved, the logistics nightmare, the appalling weather, the fact that we were significantly outnumbered on the ground (and no-they weren’t all ‘poorly motivated conscripts on the Argie side), outgunned on paper in the air and facing a well entrenched enemy fighting from… Read more »

David Steeper
David Steeper
2 months ago
Reply to  geoff

Huguenot ? Do you mean Africaner ?

geoff
geoff
2 months ago
Reply to  David Steeper

😀 Ha! No David not necessarily although the Huguenots were part of the Afrikaner gene pool, and not into racial profiling. Afrikaans and English people here in SA have grown much closer under the challenges that we face here in the sub-continent. Funnily enough it was a single individual who had a vitriolic hatred of all things British. His surname was closely allied to the Channel Islands or could have been from the English mainland via one of the Huguenot migrations to both Southern Africa and England a couple of centuries back. He was from the fringes of the old… Read more »

David Steeper
David Steeper
2 months ago
Reply to  geoff

Never knew that. What was his name ?

geoff
geoff
2 months ago
Reply to  David Steeper

Surname was Queripel and he was a notorious letter writer in the local press almost always on his favourite subject of Brit bashing.

David Steeper
David Steeper
2 months ago
Reply to  geoff

Well I suppose everyone needs a hobby !  😀 

DaveyB
DaveyB
2 months ago
Reply to  Frank62

Yet we managed to build an exact replica of HMS Invincible in that time, after she was sunk by their Airforce…..

David Steeper
David Steeper
2 months ago
Reply to  DaveyB

I think the Argentine Airforce have still got a picture of ‘Invincible’ burning and sinking on their home page. Stretching my memory but I think it’s a photo of USS Hornet during the Second World War.
 😂  😂 

CAM
CAM
2 months ago
Reply to  geoff

I wish that what you said would become reality!

Paul.P
Paul.P
2 months ago

Guam, where America’s day begins. Very much a symbolic visit, allies encircling the globe.

Goldilocks
Goldilocks
2 months ago

Any news on Diamond?

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
2 months ago
Reply to  Goldilocks

Checked yesterday – no.

I guess it is a more difficult issue than first thought or what broke is not kept as a spare on the shelf and needs manufacturing. The unexpected happens occasionally on complicated machinery, so it may be they are simply waiting for replacement parts to be made.

Cheers CR

AlexS
AlexS
2 months ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

Check this photo and look at the support structure they build in Taranto. Look like they they are going to the guts.

https://twitter.com/NavyLookout/status/1419025948444348422

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
2 months ago
Reply to  AlexS

Its a gangway access tower for a high sided ship such as an LPD or Helo carrier….like the ones the Italian Navy operate. If you look Diamonds Accommodation ladder is down onto the jetty and is being used as the Gangway. It allows the ship to control access onto the ship in these covid biosecurity times. Tanks on the jetty and the pumps are for water to be pumped on or sewage to be pumped off into. Its a pretty standard set up for a ship alongside. As its a secure military port there is probably shore power from the… Read more »

Pete
Pete
2 months ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

Wonder if they are taking ‘opportunity’ to resequence PIP ?

AlexS
AlexS
2 months ago
Reply to  Pete

I don’t think so, that would be months – the first one is already in 14th month or more(expectation was 6).
But they were expecting to stay there some time. The helicopter was sent to Italian Grottaglie Navy and AFB for the crew to retain their flight hours.

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
2 months ago
Reply to  AlexS

The Flight will use any excuse to go to an airbase. Any FF/DD in for a FTSP in the UK and the Flight go home… When foreign they try to do the same as well.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky
2 months ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

Oh for the time when 3D printing is the norm. They can complete a whole rocket in 3 weeks now or so they boast.

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
2 months ago

That picture really gives a good impression of how big the QEC is. Saw both QE and PoW along side over Christmas 2019 and they were very impressive viewed from under the bowsprit of HMS Victory.

Blimey, that was pre-COVID!

Cheers from a reflective CR

Jon
Jon
2 months ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

I had that same view while there was an F-35 on deck. I was told the dockyard tickets allow a year’s worth of visits. Good value, I thought. I’ll be back down in the spring….

Andrew D
Andrew D
2 months ago

Can anyone tell me if the CSG has any contact with the Chinese navy yet ,been shadow ECT .When the Russian do this it gets on the media .But no word as yet if anything has been going on.🤔🇬🇧

James
James
2 months ago
Reply to  Andrew D

The Daily Mail supposedly had an article about 3 contacts, i don’t read the daily Mail, neither should you. But a good question we all have been wondering about. Also the return leg is yet to come. Plus possible contacts in ther Sea of Japan exercises.

Deep32
Deep32
2 months ago
Reply to  James

3 x SSNs (Shang class) apparently if you want to believe what’s been said. 2 were attempting to trail the CSG and were detected by the T23s, while the other was ahead and got detected by the A boat! Not entirely sure of the original source, but that was the general gist of the article.

James
James
2 months ago
Reply to  Deep32

Wonder if the Astute made itself known to the ahead sub as a subtle ‘move out the way’

Deep32
Deep32
2 months ago
Reply to  James

Whilst entirely possible, it would go against the last 5 decades of UK SM Ops.
The normal mission is to detect then track/trail any hostile SM while remaining undetected yourself. Depending on where you are, you either remain in contact with higher authorities or not.
What hasn’t been mentioned in any form is the involvement of US SSNs, after all this is their area of ops, and wouldn’t be surprised if 2/3 weren’t also prowling around.

Donaldson
Donaldson
2 months ago
Reply to  Deep32

Would the CSG and A boat know about the US SNNs locations if they were around, Would they be comms between them?

Deep32
Deep32
2 months ago
Reply to  Donaldson

When more than one SM are operating together, they are governed by a ‘water space management plan’ which in this case will be under the control of ComSubPac out of Pearl Harbour. Water space management stops friendly units straying into each others areas, avoiding potential friendly collisions, at the same time, anything you detect is not a friendly unit. The areas will be fairly large depending on where the CSG is. As the CSG moves, new areas along their route will open up, whilst the old ones close. This keeps all friendlies safe, and covers a broad area search very… Read more »

Donaldson
Donaldson
2 months ago
Reply to  Deep32

Very interesting, Thanks for responding.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago
Reply to  Deep32

“Water space management stops friendly units straying into each others areas, avoiding potential friendly collisions,”

Unless your a RN and French Bomber!

I understand that as part of the Special Relationship there is close co operation WRT submarines. I guess the deconflict procedures for SSBN are even more secret than the SSN’s, so Com Ops / RAS at Northwood would have no contact with his French counterpart?

Deep32
Deep32
2 months ago

Hi Daniele, yes an unfortunate event. All I can really say is that there has been no such event WRT any UK/US SSN/SSBNs since we have been operating them. French SSKs/SSNs have always operated under NATO control (water space management), certainly way before GW1. Not sure about their bombers, but, that has since changed-obviously! OpCon of the NA is divided into East and West, broadly a line running down the middle N-S. Northwood are responsible for the Eastern side and ComSubLant is responsible for the Western half, this is excercised via the various CTFs who do operate very closely. The… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago
Reply to  Deep32

Yep, that’s all as I understood it mate, cheers.

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
2 months ago
Reply to  Andrew D

Hi Andrew,

Simple answer is yes. There is an article on Navy Lookout.

Apparently the CSG stayed away from the Chinese built islands so the Chinese Navy returned the favour by shadowing at a distance in a polite and professional manner!

Some US commentators are saying we bottled it and should have done a close pass (within 12 miles). However, given certain kit is still very new I think for a first visit to the SCS just passing through the seven dash line was a sensible compromise.

Cheers CR

Andrew D
Andrew D
2 months ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

Thanks for update ,will take a look .

dave12
dave12
2 months ago
Reply to  George Allison

3rd rate state ? going by your name the UK out does your nation Bjorn by along shot and the hypocrisy of your comment shows you certainly have your head stuck up where the sun don’t shine since the day you where born because you don’t seem to know much. If you are a Russian troll on the other hand than things are even a lot worst for you lol.

Tman
Tman
2 months ago

That seems something of an ironic comment. Why do you feel that video is ‘informed’? Please take a long look at the videos and titles used in that YouTube channel to spot an obvious pattern. You might just spot some actual propaganda.

Unlikely though, I suppose, because you came here to spread it. Hence the irony.

Nick C
Nick C
2 months ago

I don’t know who the bloke is on the video you recommended, but he is barely coherent and has difficulty stringing a sentence together! And I am not sure his “take” is at all well informed.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago

Informed? I read the comments on that vid. They all have a serious chip on their shoulder. One comment even wants Britain to give up on our colonial past. I have news, we did, 60 years ago.
Britain, like it or lump it, is a P5 member, a G7 member, and a nation quite capable of taking part in world events despite what the momentum, Chinese, trolls, Russians, and other assorted oddballs on that vid want.

And we will. And are.

TypewriterMonkey
TypewriterMonkey
2 months ago

So far, this mission has been a tremendous success.

Andy a
Andy a
2 months ago

What is that rubbish, what the carrier group is doing is same as American groups exorcising their rights under international law and court rulings to sail there. Contrary to what China says international law says they don’t own it

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago

looking at how important this deployment is and that it shows how important having a global Naval presence for Global U.K. I wonder if buying a couple more Rivers and forward basing them would be more impactful than a royal pretty boat. If we can have a Rivers or two based in every Key part of the world that a trade envoy or minister could hold a meeting or reception in, with the host nation knowing that the RN is always about and helping out, that would have far more meaning than the Boris boat turning up for a few… Read more »

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

The Rivers as fantastic vessels that they are, don’t have the same impact as a floating embassy to conduct trades talks from or host defence trade shows. Fortunately for us, we can have both.

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

I don’t know Robert, being a practical individual I’ve never been sold on the show. I just prefer HMG spending money on useful stuff over image.

Dern
Dern
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

But, like it or not, image is an important part of soft power, and often results in getting deals done.

Jonathan
Jonathan
2 months ago
Reply to  Dern

To be honest is just my personal preference around how government money is spent. I got a pissy on when my boss redecorated the office with nice sofas and gave him a waste of taxpayer money lecture. If may be a good idea in the end and bring in money ect, but it’s not not in my nature to be happy with government spending on bling.

Paul.P
Paul.P
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

Symbols and icons are important. They convey a message. My concern is the message. It’s one thing to leverage your history, but not if the message works in the opposite direction to what you want to achieve. Would sailing a ‘Royal Yacht’; a symbol of imperialism into the harbour of a former colony be more or less likely to get you business?
Personally I think a WW2 light cruiser like HMS Belfast would work a lot better. Foreign businesses would fight for tickets. Alternatively a futuristic high tech design promoting cutting edge UK green technologies; wind power, composites, hybrid airships…

Last edited 2 months ago by Paul.P
Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago
Reply to  Paul.P

Would sailing a ‘Royal Yacht’; a symbol of imperialism into the harbour of a former colony be more or less likely to get you business?”

No. But the only people mentioning Royal Yacht are the NFS detractors. No one else sees it as a Royal Yacht and its been stated many times what the idea and role for the vessel is.

Paul.P
Paul.P
2 months ago

Well most of the press are calling it a Royal Yacht, the design we have seen looks like Britannia Mk2. If it walks like a yacht and talks like a yacht …it’s a yacht. We have to be hard headed about this. If it’s to go ahead it’s design is important. UK PLC is going to have to work hard to recover the economic damage of Brexit and now Covid. I don’t have a problem we it’s that. Making bad choices work is how you get character improvement 🙂
By the way, what’s NFS?

Last edited 2 months ago by Paul.P
Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago
Reply to  Paul.P

The National Flag Ship. Which is what the “Yacht” is. ( despite what the gutter press think! ) 🙄😆

Paul.P
Paul.P
2 months ago

Morning Daniele. Thx. I’ll add the acronym to my list. Has a name been chosen?

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago
Reply to  Paul.P

Morning Paul.

Don’t think so. Not even seen a design yet.

Dern
Dern
2 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Besides 2 fwd based in the Pacific, 1 in Gib, 1 in the West Indies and 1 in the Falkland’s how many more fwd based OPV’s do you really want?
Also, you really can’t hold a reception or an industry event on an OPV, there isn’t space for it, so that’s a bit of a non-starter.

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
2 months ago
Reply to  Dern

They have a flight deck and will have a flight deck awning. You would be amazed at the gatherings you can have on a flight deck…

Dern
Dern
2 months ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

I actually wouldn’t, despite an army background I’ve been on a couple of frigate flight deck based gatherings.

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
2 months ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Yeh, RN is very very good at honesting visitors. I got to be on HMS Bristol when she did her last little cruise off the South Coast. Fantastic day and we were made very welcome.

Cheers CR

Airborne
Airborne
2 months ago

Oh dear, how sad, never mind. Knowing nothing must be a proud achievement in your house.

Paul Gaunt
Paul Gaunt
2 months ago

What is the progress with HMS Diamond, is it on the mend?

Richard B
Richard B
2 months ago

Ten weeks in to the CSG21 deployment and a lot of painful lessons are clearly being learnt – top of which is that Crowsnest is a bad case of penny-wise, pound foolish. The absence of the three Crowsnest-fitted Merlin ASaC helicopters (ZH843, ZH846 and ZH856) from even PR photo’s has become a glaring omission. The lack of a decent COD capability is also proving a painful shortfall. The purchase of perhaps 3 Osprey CMV-22B’s must rapidly rising up the RN’s ‘whiteboard’ wish list. Finally, the constant deck parking of most of the 18 (or is it 17?) F-35Bs to give… Read more »