Great Britain has sent a message about the potential his Navy is accumulating through the simultaneous use of his two aircraft carrier on missions in different parts of the world. HMS Queen ElizabethLast week it sailed towards northern waters for international exercises in the Norwegian Sea, where it will lead a group of warships involving half a dozen allied countries, while HMS Prince of Wales travels towards the United States, where it will meet various undergoes tests and operates with different types of aircraft and drones.
He aircraft carrier Queen Elizabeth, with 900 sailors on board,Its voyage used F-35B fighter jets, the dedicated aircraft carrier vertical landing variant, and Merlin Mk2 helicopters, now equipped with more powerful radar. In the first phase of the operation, the aircraft carrier’s F35 fighter jets will take part in the exercise cobra warrior, The Royal Air Force’s (RAF) largest semi-annual exercise with aircraft from Australia, Canada, Germany, Italy, Norway and the United Kingdom, reports the UK Defense Journal.
British fighters will take part in the military exercise typhoon and F-35B, A400M transport aircraft and C17, and Voyager tanker, to develop interoperability together with allied aircraft and to practice integration between fourth and fifth generation combat aircraft in the air, at sea and on land. The F-35B is a stealth fighter aircraft with short take-off and vertical landing (STOVL) capabilities, meaning it can take off from land and sea on British aircraft carriers without the use of a catapult.
The use of British Queen Elizabeth Carrier Strike Group It occurs a few days after HMS Prince of Wales started from Portsmouth to the United States to develop some advanced surgical techniques Mojave drones, F-35B Lightning stealth fighters and MV-22 Osprey tiltrotor aircraft of the US Marine Corps. This will be the longest deployment since it became operational and will last until next Christmas. It should be recalled that the Prince of Wales was in the workshop for nine months to correct a fault in the propeller system.
He New Defense Secretary Grant Shappsassures that by deploying HMS Queen Elizabeth and HMS Prince of Wales at the same time, the Royal Navy is “sending a strong signal that the UK’s capabilities for aircraft carrier operations are among the strongest in the world.” Is this really the case? – ask some experts in the UK.
Criticism of loopholes on British aircraft carriers
In the pages of the Daily Telegraph, Lewis Page assures The Royal Navy’s two aircraft carriers lack the catapult system. This allows a larger number and more diverse aircraft to be launched. “In fact, the only aircraft that can be deployed is the B version of the F-35, the jump jet. This is not as good as other F-35s and other fighter aircraft in general because it is burdened by its weight and its “bulky vertical thrust equipment. This means it cannot carry as much fuel and weapons as a normal fighter jet. Plus it costs a lot more to buy and fly.”
This aircraft is so expensive that in 2021 the United Kingdom had only eight units of the F-35B, while the HMS Queen Elizabeth is designed to transport such a machine strong force of 36 fighter aircraft and four radar aircraft.
The British Navy is currently examining the possibility of equipping its two largest ships with catapults – aircraft launch and recovery systems – in order to be able to use truly powerful aircraft in a war scenario.
The lack of catapults means that long-range radar aircraft, such as those used by the US and French navies, are not an option for the Royal Navy and “lower-flying helicopters that cannot see as far will be used” instead. to operate so far from the mother ship,” writes Lewis Page, for whom ““We still don’t have a credible F-35 force.”
The lack of budget was felt on several occasions in the Ministry of Defense. Recently, former Chief of Naval Staff Lord West denounced this The UK’s military strength risks looking “weak” to powers such as Russia and China when its flagship aircraft carrier cannot fly fully armed.” Lord West said at the time that the lack of F-35s on British aircraft carriers was due to the lack of missiles to arm them.
What HMS Queen Elizabeth looks like
HMS Queen Elizabeth’s strike group will join later NATO allies Conduct exercises and training in the North Atlantic. It is the second time the Royal Navy flagship has led an international aircraft carrier strike group, following its deployment to the Indo-Pacific in 2021.
HMS Queen Elizabeth displaces 65,000 tons and It has a length of 280 meters and a width of 73 meters. Based in Portsmouth, he leads and has become the United Kingdom’s 21st Fighter Group National prideviewed by the British government as a symbol of “Global Britain” and the country’s diplomatic and commercial power.