New carriers will not have Airborne Early Warning - Falklands lesson forgotten?

Discussion in 'Royal Navy' started by jim30, Oct 21, 2010.

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  1. Just scanning through the various documents that have come my way over SDSR - in it, the way is clear that in 2016 the RN loses all Seaking aircraft. In other words, at this point, we lose our 3 AEW squadrons, and will be putting our brand new and jolly expensive aircraft carrier to sea without any AEW.

    There appears to be a growing 'ISTAR gap' post HERRICK - we're losing Sentinel, Nimrod, Sk AEW, it looks like Predator won't be put into the Core EP and in return we're gaining err, well, err nothing in return.

    AEW was identified as a critical gap in the Falklands, and now we're putting out a white elephant of a carrier without AEW, without any ASW helos and with only 12 aircraft onboard. Remind me again what we're getting for 5.2 billion?
  2. Presumably the 2015 SDSR will announce that we don't need a navy after all.

    More seriously, I can't believe that MOD or the RN would accept an AEW gap, after the lessons of 1982. I was under the impression from the SDSR document, that the RN will operate Wildcat and Merlin on a scale to fit the size of the fleet- I'd have thought that would include the need to replace SkASAC.
  3. The ASaC replacement will be a Merlin utilizing HC2 airframes and a palletised mission system.
  4. jim24

    jim24 Book Reviewer

    In September Agusta Westland/Thales unvieled a proposal to fit a palatised Searchwater 2000 Radar system that could just be slotted into any Aw101 through the rear ramp, with the raydome deployed through the rear door when in flight, Don't know if this idea has been taken up by the RN

    Attached Files:

  5. I know the RAF rear ramp Merlins don't fit on the current aircraft lifts without removing rotor blades, so this wouldn't work at the moment. Maybe they've planned this into the future carriers, but knowing the Navy procurement system I doubt it...
  6. jim24

    jim24 Book Reviewer

    This is what it looks like inside

    Attached Files:

  7. Merlin ASaC is for the future carriers
  8. SDSR indicates carriers now costed at £20 billion. Suggest that includes the MASC R&D and procurement ready for service in 2020. :wink:
  9. Oh goody. That must mean we are getting 150 JSF(B) for them too:
    The carriers themselves will cost nearer £5bn for the pair and at least £1bn of this is due to the procrastination of the last government:

    You do like alarming people with inflated figures, don't you? So do the media.
  10. Whitecity - now is not the time to attempt smugness
  11. And the main cost here is the hugely expensive F35 aircraft (at some £100 m each). Anyone for the Goshawk? At least the navy would not lose its skill-base, and could provide some sort of deterrent.
    McDonnell Douglas T-45 Goshawk - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


    And as for AEW, there are a couple of barrage balloons still at Duxford. Seriously, if you need a cheap over the horizon radar system, a barrage balloon on a picket would be better than nothing.

    A ship 20m tall can see 16 km to the horizon
    A barrage balloon 600m up can see 88km
    A barrage balloon 1000m up can see 114km

    The 1000m balloon would give you:
    7 minutes instead of 1 minutes, for tracking a subsonic sea-skimming missile
    3 minutes instead of 0.5 minute, for tracking a supersonic sea-skimming missile

    Just don't ask me to inflate it in a 10m swell and a 30 knot wind... ;-)