Balloons are too susceptible to wind and manoeuvre so would probably restrict the manoeuvrability of the ship. They also require significant helium stocks to be employed effectively for relatively little gain in altitude.
AEW not only increases the radar range due to antenna height, but it operates from a position in front of a task group. Not only does this extend the range, but it provides a way of maintaining security. The radar is powered up some distance from the ship.
Helium? We should use Hydrogen! I saw a programme in which a former NASA Engineer said he had spent his life struggling to ignite Hydrogen. He also said the Hindenberg disaster was the coating on the gas bags catching fire, as the flames were yellow, but Hydrogen burns with a blue flame.Balloons are too susceptible to wind and manoeuvre so would probably restrict the manoeuvrability of the ship. They also require significant helium stocks to be employed effectively for relatively little gain in altitude.
Kites are more effective but have a very limited payload.
There's an idea. Give any hostile recce aircraft, surface vessel or submarine a helium filled indicator of exactly where you are.
I think fighter aircraft first appeared over the Western front to counter enemy observation balloons and reece aircraft. Likewise the reason it was felt necessary to launch aircraft from ships was because only one RNAS aircraft took part in Jutland - there were several seaplane carriers but they had trouble getting to sea, and twenty five minutes was the time a well drill ship could achieve for stopping, craning the seaplane into the water, manning it, and starting it up.There's an idea. Give any hostile recce aircraft, surface vessel or submarine a helium filled indicator of exactly where you are.
Tactical brilliance; Jellicoe and Betty would've loved it.........
If it depended on wireless communication Beatty would not have been interested. Unless he could store some more Cordite charges in itBeatty might, Jellicoe had more brains.
There are hundreds of the things lying around however and the USAF has also chosen not to upgrade the engines on their E-3Gs.One would hope they're going to do the engine upgrade as part of it. Keeping those PWs going another 15 years may be interesting.....
Boeing 707 - last airframes built in 1978 IIRCMeanwhile, NATO are spending $1B to upgrade their fleet of 14 x E-3As (which have already undergone an extensive modernisation programme) to keep them in service to 2035. Thereafter, they will consider replacement options.
The French and UK E-3s used different engines - the CFM56.Boeing 707 - last airframes built in 1978 IIRC
Inefficient engines. They are starting to make Shacks look youthful.
All commercial 707s are now retired.