Britain's biggest warship uncovered

Discussion in 'Americas' started by nandu, Jul 18, 2010.

  1. nandu

    nandu Senior Member Senior Member

    Oct 5, 2009
    Likes Received:
    Britain's biggest warship uncovered
    A wide-angle lens can barely do justice to the scale of latest aircraft carriers being built in Glasgow.

    The Queen Elizabeth, Britain's biggest naval vessel, takes shape at BAE's Govan shipyard in Glasgow

    It almost needs a second look to understand the scale. This remarkable picture is one of the first from inside the shipyard that is building Britain's biggest ever naval ship – the aircraft carrier Queen Elizabeth. And, yes, that tiny figure at the bottom is one of the workers.

    The carrier's stern section is nearing the roof of BAE Systems' Glasgow shipyard just a year after work started – part of the wall will have to be removed before it can be taken by barge to the Rosyth dockyard in Fife. The sounds of cutting, welding and grinding steel can be heard around the clock.

    At a cost of £5.2bn, displacing 65,000 tonnes each, taller than Niagara Falls at 56m from keel to masthead, and built from three times as much steel as Wembley Stadium, the two new aircraft carriers are a pair of floating superlatives.

    But while workers get on with the job of building the huge vessel at different sites in Glasgow, Portsmouth, Devon, Newcastle and Merseyside, the carrier programme faces an uncertain future as the Ministry of Defence (MoD) undertakes a strategic review expected to result in cuts of at least 15pc in the £37bn defence budget over the next four years.

    BAE's own chief executive, Ian King, said last week both carriers may not go into active service with the Navy, although he believes that both will be completed.

    BAE is leading the consortium building the two Queen Elizabeth class ships, along with Thales and Babcock, which will oversee assembly at Rosyth once the parts are floated in by barge from the various UK yards.

    Geoff Searle, the programme director of the Aircraft Carrier Alliance, which also includes the MoD, is keen to stress the carrier's utility as a "defence asset, not just a Royal Navy ship".

    "Half of the air support missions in Afghanistan have been flown from US carriers in the Indian Ocean and the Gulf," he said. "They provide enormous flexibility and scope."

    Providing four acres of sovereign UK territory wherever it sails, the carrier will have a naval crew of 679, roughly the same as on the carriers in service now, although the ship is three times larger than HMS Illustrious and Ark Royal. With crews to operate the 36 F35 Joint Strike Fighters on board too, there will be close to 1,600 personnel.

    Helicopters used by all three services can operate from the ship, and the carrier could also be used to carry up to 500 troops, Mr Searle said. The ships, the Queen Elizabeth and the Prince of Wales, are due to go into service in 2016 and 2018 – funding permitting.

    On a visit to the shipyard in Govan on the south bank of the Clyde in Glasgow, where the largest sections of the carriers are being built, Mr Searle was also at pains to point out the economic benefits associated with the programme.

    Some £1.2bn of sub-contracts for work on the ship have been awarded to companies throughout the UK, and more than 14,000 jobs will be supported by the programme at the peak of production. The 80,000 tonnes of steel needed has already been ordered, mainly from Corus in the UK. A £100m transport contract has been agreed for moving the parts of the ship from around the UK to Rosyth, where a glide crane which can lift 1,000 tonnes has recently been installed.

    BAE will take on double the number of graduates this year to work on the programme, 42, up from 21 last year, and will add around another 28 apprentices to its pool of 207.

    Around 3,500 people are employed at the two BAE yards on the Clyde, and several hundred are still working on the final Daring class Type 45 destroyers. The last of the six, the Duncan, is on the berth at Govan and is due to be launched in October. The carriers will provide work for all those people when the destroyers are finished, BAE said.
  3. ahmedsid

    ahmedsid Top Gun Senior Member

    Feb 21, 2009
    Likes Received:
    At times of Economic hardship in England, this is an Extravagance. England is not doing this because they feel truly threatened, but because they want to be seen a power, a wannabe uncle sam. I feel England has enough to repel aggression, they should have used these funds to prop up their economy.

    I dont really think, that Britian will take in both these carriers. Can be that, it can be sold off, but to whom? :)
  4. p2prada

    p2prada Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

    May 25, 2009
    Likes Received:
    Holy Hell
    You meant TATA Steel. :happy_2:
  5. Neil

    Neil Senior Member Senior Member

    Jun 23, 2010
    Likes Received:
    there were reports that one of the carrier is being sold to India...whats happening on that front...??
  6. Kunal Biswas

    Kunal Biswas Member of the Year 2011 Moderator

    May 26, 2010
    Likes Received:
    We Indians are going smooth with our own IAC projects, If India do purchased this 60,000ton CV it may prove worthy within IN fleet..
  7. icecoolben

    icecoolben Regular Member

    Aug 14, 2009
    Likes Received:
    Then tata steel could transfer the technology to India, and when IAC-2,3 construction begin, it may offer better quality steel for the ships. Of course the grade should be higher than SAIL's and cheaper as well.
    The british need to ships to be built. Because it involves 5000 promised jobs in the country, they have cut jsf procurements though. One fighter compliment would be used on both or shared during war time. India won't buy it off the shelf. But may purchase its design, which is by any means world class, talk about a 60 ton ship with 60 fighters heavy. Indian navy would take cue and surely is interested in this design. The Indian design would by Catobar, that is for certain. So even this design would be modified before putting it to work in cochin shipyard.
  8. shuvo@y2k10

    [email protected] Senior Member Senior Member

    Apr 4, 2010
    Likes Received:
    this is a horrible british idea. with a fragile economy they can hardly maintain these warships.they are like a parasite country who can hardly fight a war with a country without US support.a with that amount of money india can make at least 6 carriers of that weight.
  9. 171K

    171K Tihar Jail Banned

    Jul 3, 2010
    Likes Received:
    Falklands war son!
    British military maintain their military hardware better then most, certainly better then India!
    And India with it's booming economy can't provide a toilet to 700 million Indians, yesterday 5000 Indian kids died of hunger, today 5000 kids will die of hunger & 2moz another 5000 kids will die of hunger :-(

Share This Page