An Astute class submarine, part of HMS Queen Elizabeth’s Carrier Strke Group, has docked in Busan, South Korea.

The below images were taken by a local naval spotter.

The Astute class are the largest, most advanced and most powerful attack submarines ever operated by the Royal Navy, combining world leading sensors, design and weaponry in a versatile vessel. The class have provision for up-to 38 weapons in six 21-inch torpedo tubes. The submarines are capable of using Tomahawk Block IV land-attack missiles with a range of 1,000 miles and Spearfish heavyweight torpedoes.

Other Carrier Strike Group units are in Guam and Japan.

British Carrier Strike Group arrives in Guam

Previously, HMS Artful worked with the Carrier Strike Group in the Mediterranean Sea before heading back to the UK and another Astute class submarine meeting the vessel east of Suez and sailing with the group.

HMS Queen Elizabeth joins up with HMS Artful

What is the UK Carrier Strike Group doing?

HMS Queen Elizabeth is the deployed flag ship for Carrier Strike Group 21 (CSG21), a deployment that will see the ship and her escorts sail to the Asia-Pacific and back. The Carrier Strike Group includes ships from the United States Navy, the Dutch Navy, and Marines from the US Marine Corps as well as air assets from 617 Sqn, 820 NAS, 815 NAS and 845 NAS.

Not shown is an Astute class submarine.

The Royal Navy say that the UK’s Carrier Strike Group will visit more than one fifth of the world’s nations. Led by HMS Queen Elizabeth, the task group will visit 40 nations including India, Japan, Republic of Korea and Singapore in a deployment covering 26,000 nautical miles.

“While in the Pacific, ships from the Carrier Strike Group will mark the 50th anniversary of the Five Powers Defence Agreement between Malaysia, Singapore, Australia, New Zealand and the UK by taking part in Exercise Bersama Lima. Joining HMS Queen Elizabeth on her maiden deployment are destroyers HMS Diamond and Defender; frigates HMS Richmond and Kent; an Astute-class submarine in support below the waves; and Royal Fleet Auxiliary support ships RFA Fort Victoria and RFA Tidespring.

More than 30 aircraft will also embark across the task group including F-35 jets from 617 Squadron, the Dambusters, and the US Marine Corps’ VMFA-211; Wildcat helicopters from 815 Naval Air Squadron and Merlin helicopters from 820 and 845 Naval Air Squadrons. Royal Marines from 42 Commando will also deploy with the carrier. Dutch frigate HNLMS Evertsen and American Arleigh Burke destroyer USS The Sullivans are also part of the strike group.”

HMS Queen Elizabeth at sea with a mix of British and American jets.

Currently however, HMS Diamond isn’t with the group after suffering a defect. You can read more about that here. HMS Queen Elizabeth and her Carrier Strike Group will also undertake anti-submarine exercises whilst in the Pacific region.

 

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Airborne
Airborne
2 months ago

Force multiplier bar none! This machine is what global capability is all about.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago
Reply to  Airborne

Bravo. One of our trump cards.

Dern
Dern
2 months ago

Queue the people saying that we should cut them and get SSK’s to patrol the north sea in 3… 2… oh… they seem to be absent today.

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
2 months ago
Reply to  Dern

Hi Dern, Not SSK’s, but I’d like to see some autonomous submersibles capable of patrolling the North Sea particularly around those new wind turbines we’re planting in huging numbers out there. Very soon our main power ‘stations’ will mostly be off shore and vulnerable to you know who… I suggest small autonomus vehicles because there is not a lot of room in amongst the turbines and you know who is likely to use similar technology to sneak and plant explossive charge if they ever feel like it. Even if only the power cables were cut it could black out part… Read more »

Dern
Dern
2 months ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

Eyo CR
I mean, if you could get hypothetical robotic survey boat, and operate it off of something small like a P2000, you’d already have 90% of that capability developed pretty quickly.

Cheers.

Last edited 2 months ago by Dern
Rob Young
Rob Young
2 months ago
Reply to  Dern

Well, I like the idea of the UK having a tactical ‘North Sea’ squadron and that patrol SSKs would be an asset… but not at the expense of a strategic weapon. Completely different animals with a completely different function.

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

Absolute marvels of engineering and design. Seriously scary levels of capability.

Rob N
Rob N
2 months ago

This probably means that a US boat or another Astute is looking after the store while the port visit is on.

Deep32
Deep32
2 months ago
Reply to  Rob N

I’m under the impression that the CSG is currently dispersed on various port visits, so there is nothing to look after!
Whilst any US SSNs may still be about, we have only sent one Astute on this deployment. We don’t have the assets to send more.

Donaldson
Donaldson
2 months ago
Reply to  Deep32

HMS Queen Elizebeth, HMS Defender, HMS Kent, HNLMS Evertsen and USS The Sullivans are currently alongside in Guam.

HMS Richmond alongside in Sasebo, Japan

Astute in South Korea

Then obviously HMS Diamond still in Taranto, Unsure when she’ll be fixed in time to continue on the CSG.

Deep32
Deep32
2 months ago
Reply to  Donaldson

Cheers, knew they were alongside somewhere.

Tony
Tony
2 months ago
Reply to  Donaldson

Presumably they might get Diamond working in time to pick the fleet back up as it passes by in the Med on the way home!

James
James
2 months ago
Reply to  Deep32

One astute escorted the fleet up to Suez then another took over east was what I read so thats 2 involved in the deployment.

Deep32
Deep32
2 months ago
Reply to  James

Yes James, and if you include the one that was used as part of the CSG workup package, that makes 3. They aren’t all EOS! The point is, there is only one Astute assigned to the CSG that is out in the Far East. We currently only have 6 SSNs available, two are T boats and 4 Astutes. On a 3 for 1 basis we would only ever have 2 SMs available at any one time, so, only one was ever going to deploy with the CSG. On a good day we might just have 3-4 available for a short… Read more »

James
James
2 months ago
Reply to  Deep32

Hopefully after Dreadnought they will start building the next gen Astutes to keep production at a constant rate.

Deep32
Deep32
2 months ago
Reply to  James

The first Dreadnought wont be in service until early 2030. The other 3 at about 2 yearly intervals, might be less.
SSN(R) hull one will start its build somewhere between Dreadnought hull 3 and 4 construction. It may be ready by 2040, by which time Astute will be 30 years young, obviously its far to early to say how many we will receive. So, for the next 20 yrs, we will have 7 SSNs period, while both Russia and China grow their SSN fleets. That is the reality of things, unfortunately.

Always Right
Always Right
2 months ago
Reply to  Deep32

while both Russia and China grow their SSN fleets. “

With cheap and inferior submarines. Oh no

Deep32
Deep32
2 months ago
Reply to  Always Right

You again! For someone who clearly has no relevent knowedge of the subject matter you make a lot of juvenile comments! Enjoy ur evening with your lemonade!

Ted
Ted
2 months ago

I would add the possibility of more than one sub (may be another Astute Class, a Virginia or another Allied Nation’s Boat) in the CSG – that would change the parameters somewhat 🙂

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky
2 months ago
Reply to  Ted

It was interesting to read last week about both the Astute class sub and the anti sub surface vessels being able to track trailing Chinese submarines in and around the South China Sea. I wonder how accurate that was and at what range.

Fernando Yap
Fernando Yap
2 months ago

….nice display, projection of might and stability……..law
and order……..long live the Queen….rule Britannia rule..

Steve
Steve
2 months ago

Yesterday were3 Voyagers in Indo Pacific area, 1 enroute Guam to Alaska, 1 fm BC to Guam and 3rd flying from DG across Western Australia, thats what was transmitting on ADS-B anyway 🙂

Donaldson
Donaldson
2 months ago
Reply to  Steve

You missed a C-17 too, Wonder what cargo/crew were being transported/rotated.

Isambard Hooper
Isambard Hooper
2 months ago

The United Kingdom should have entered a partnership with the US to use our assets
(Armed forces) in a joint partnership years ago .
The EU will in a few years have its own disjointed armed forces .
And to undermine NATO is the wrong way to go .

dan
dan
2 months ago

The US has always had a policy of providing Britain with any assistance it can when asked. The US has plenty of DDGs so assigning 1 of them to the Brit carrier group was approved. The US is probably thrilled that the Brits are back in the CV game since it will take some pressure off the US CVN groups.

Always Right
Always Right
2 months ago
Reply to  dan

It doesn’t take “any pressue” of the US carriers are they are different navies with different global interests.

The US has plenty of DDGs “

Has some yes.

Dern
Dern
2 months ago

Great first comment.
A common EU defence policy would only strengthen NATO. Why on earth would Nato be hurt by turning it from a treaty of 30odd member states, to a treaty between 6? Especially if it’s now not just the US that can start defence projects that benefit from massive economies of scale. The “EU undermining NATO” is a bit of a myth I’m afraid.

Always Right
Always Right
2 months ago

No it shouldn’t, as it has no requirement to, neither does the US.

Sceptical Richard
Sceptical Richard
2 months ago

Ouch! Wouldn’t like to be the master of one of those tugs. Where do you push without damaging any of the tiles or flank arrays.

Michael Lancaster
Michael Lancaster
2 months ago

There are a total of 3 Astute class submarines with the Carrier Group in the China Sea.

Last edited 2 months ago by Michael Lancaster
Deep32
Deep32
2 months ago

No, there really are not, there is only one, HMS Artful!

dan
dan
2 months ago

Never take the train to Busan. haha

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
2 months ago

Slighty off topic, but I know that folk like to follow our ships on the AIS system websites, but beware they are being spoofed. This article on Wired describes an investigation undertaken by a Swedish Journalist when they noticed that some of the tracks of warships from various coutries were in entirely the wrong place. For example, some months ago HMS Queen Elizabeth and an escort of British, Dutch and Belgian warships were operating off the north Cornwall coast, when checked there were pictures of HMS QE somewhere else entirely. US warships have been shown do very iffy stuff as… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

Morning CR.

That’s been covered here before by GB.

No surprise really. Government, military can do what they want if they need to for security and are hand in glove with providers.

I mean, we cannot have a situation where anyone can plot accurate locations of our military assets on a constant basis.

Unrelated, but like the TPS which was used in the Cold War and has similar usage today, in case of terror attacks and so forth.

Upstairs can and will manipulate.