The second of the UK’s new aircraft carriers, HMS Prince of Wales, has sailed for sea trials.
This first phase of sea trials will look at platform stability and manoeuvrability.
At present, the ship’s company (around 600 people say the Royal Navy) are focusing on a successful spell of sea trials, having prepared for months, gradually bringing the many systems, sensors and items of machinery from the galley to the main engines into life.
They are joined for the trials by a team of 320 civilian contractors.
Captain Darren Houston, HMS Prince of Wales’ Commanding Officer, said in a release:
“I am immensely proud of the professionalism and determination that my ship’s company have shown in preparing themselves and their ship for this historic day. Whether through working alongside our industrial partners to support the build and commissioning of key systems or training tirelessly to operate the ship and work as a team, the crew have demonstrated unfaltering dedication and resolve in the face of a multitude of challenges.
We are looking forward to sea trials and the opportunity to test our new ship before heading to our new home base of Portsmouth to join our sister ship.”
Following her sea trials HMS Prince of Wales will sail for her Portsmouth where she is due to be formally commissioned in the presence of her Lady Sponsor, the Duchess of Cornwall, before the end of the year.