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The Queen will formally commission HMS Queen Elizabeth into the Royal Navy fleet in just three weeks on the 7th of December.

The name HMS Queen Elizabeth is a continuation of an historic Royal Navy name dating back over a century and the vessel herself is not named after the current monarch.

The carrier is currently on sea trials and will return to her home port in Portsmouth before the 7th of December.

Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson said:

“In a world of intensifying global threats, this magnificent ship will be a leading force fighting to protect the values of the UK and our allies. It’s an honour to visit her at sea, and to meet such a passionate crew. I’m sure Her Majesty will be similarly impressed at next month’s historic ceremony for the nation’s new flagship, which proudly bears her name.”

The Defence Secretary took a Merlin helicopter from RAF Northolt and landed on the flight-deck this morning, where he met the ship’s company, from the Captain Jerry Kyd to the most junior ranks.

Captain Jerry Kyd said:

“I was delighted to be able to welcome the Defence Secretary on board HMS Queen Elizabeth at what is a very exciting time for the ship, for the Royal Navy, and for Defence as we move into the final phase of our sea trials.

We spoke about the progress made on our trials so far and the exciting future ahead as the UK regenerates its strike carrier capability.

We’re glad the Defence Secretary took the time to visit us and really get under the skin of this aircraft carrier and see for himself the enormous potential of this ship that will be deployed across the globe for the next half century.”

27 COMMENTS

  1. So she will have been delivered, trialled, system tested and commissioned all on time then …

    Just thought I would add some positivism.

    US East Coast in the New Year then ….

  2. She will be a magnificent asset for the UK and in a strike group as good as any in world.

    Missile point defence tho – why is she the only carrier in world without?

    Bothered bothered bothered.

  3. Me to Ian. Very bothered, bothered, bothered.
    why the hell can we not find the money to equip her with sea ceptor.
    £3 billion strike carrier only one in the world with no SAM.
    insane!

    • Hopefully in time she will be – just need to tell the Treasury it means we can decommission a frigate if they fit SeaCeptor – they’ll jump at the chance 🙁 !!!!

    • £3bn is the build cost. They will also carry IRO;

      £4bn of F-35s (at full load)
      £0.5bn of Merlins

      Plus weapons, ammo and most importantly of all the people, knowledge, know how etc

      So, £10bn directly perhaps?

      • Sea Ram or RIM-116 RAF would be cost effective on the carriers. I agree with Mr Bell

        You dont buy a Rolls Royce and dodge buying insurance (unless you are stupid of course).

        Its literally loose change in the scale of these things. Whilst I understand she is still on Sea trials it doesn’t cost anything to have a plan and set the record straight.

        RN PR is a disaster zone – they should be all over these forums.

        • That’s what the T45 is for plus missile defences take up way more valuable room than people perceive, leaving less room for flight related equipment etc.

          • You don’t think every other carrier has AAW escorts Hugh?

            It’s either the height of ignorance, complacency or arrogance to think it won’t happen to us.

            There’s no British exceptionalism for any future enemy – we will just be the enemy – with a glaring gap to exploit.

        • Platform has not been designed to accept Sea-Rim, Sea Ceptor etc. Cabling, power and all the things needed to install these things are just not there. The requirement was there, someone though has traded that requirement and has accepted the risk. That is the person you need to talk to, he/she is known as the the SRO (Senior Responsible Owner) delegated by the MoD to make these decisions and judgements.
          The risk has been accepted, not mitigated but accepted.
          1st Sea Lord accepts the platform and HMQ will commission it into service on the 7th December 2017 – at that point it becomes the problem of the RN and all the personnel who will be deployed on HMS QE.

          • I know it’s not there now Lee, or planned as I understand it, which doesn’t mean it can’t or shouldn’t be.

            She’s designed for 50 years of systems growth; each new system will require, cabling, power, training etc

            Missile point defence and (maybe or) DEW would be the very first thing to change from the original risk acceptance.

    • @ Mr Bell

      The Royal Navy could also Try Deploying a Otherwise Land-Based Air Defense System (i.e. “Patriot”) as a Stand-In System. As similarly tried by the US Navy in Testing an HIMAR from the Deck of an LHA-2, USS Essex class Assault Ship/Fire Support Ship…

  4. Would be interested if the S1850M/Artisan combination on the QE’S can support the Sea Viper/Aster system,admittedly this is obviously the most expensive solution,failing that Sea Ceptor should be the minimum defence they should be equipped with.Yes in an ideal world they will always deploy with suitable escorts but in an uncertain world can this always be the case ?

  5. Agree with all. The Nimitzs have ESSM for medium range air defense, plus RAM close, before Phalanxes as last ditch CIWS. They also have plenty more escorts than us. We could be sacrificing 1,000s of lives just to save a few quid. I believe the Japs, S Koreans, Italians, French, Indians all have more escorts than we have, beside those obvious.

    Still I hope it’s a nice day for HM, bright clear, dry & mild.

    • FrankLT.

      As another poster with experience has pointed out over many months the lack of a SAM system is not always advisable with carrier ops. What the hell do I know? Seems a must to have one myself.

      The main defence is the escorts.

      The Japs, Koreans and Italians may have more escorts, but they do not have Carriers, SSN’s with TLAM, and SSBN’s.

      Who here proposes we scrap our SSN’s to afford lots more escorts. I don’t.

      We all want more escorts, but if HMG are so stubborn, blind, arrogant, inept, whatever that they will not increase spending what do we choose?

      The UK cannot have everything, in numbers.

      If it wants everything, to be able to operate alongside our greatest ally, the USA, with a wide range of capabilities, then many areas will indeed be small in numbers, like we see.

      What do we choose?
      What did the admirals who run the navy choose?

      • True except for Italy has two Harrier carriers/big deck LHDs in service with one under construction. Cavour is being modified for the F-35 and Trieste is being built from the keel out for it.

      • Evening gents
        The CTG works on a layered defence principle.
        Outer layer – CAP supported by ASACS which will also give you the wide area RAP (recognised air picture). This will normally be up threat to provide the best defensive posture for the group.
        Middle layer – the picket, Type 45 operating away from the carrier utilising its Sampson and 1850 radar and ESSM suite but fully fused into the ASACS platform and CAP which it will normally control.
        Inner layer – the escort, Type 26 operating in front and to the side of the carrier utilising it ESSM suite and fused data from T45 etc. One T26 will operate forward, sprinting and then trailing its 2087 listening for targets above and below the water, sharing that data with the CTG.
        One T26 operating within the CVF MEZ providing point defence with Sea Ceptor.
        The Carrier will also have a/c on R1 ready to launch on demand dependent on requirement.
        Point Defence – Phalanx 20mm point defence weapon – sea wizz
        Chaff
        Layers of defence providing depth, flexibility and mobility.

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