What's happening with the Harriers?

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by BlueDZ, Mar 25, 2011.

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  1. Hi aviation types! Been watching HMS Ark Royal on Discovery and wondered what has actually happened with our 30 odd Harriers? I know Cameron has "scrapped" em but what exactly does this mean? Obviously Ark will be mothballed, gutted and cannibalised for her sistership but what do they do with the aircraft? Are they put in storage and wrapped in plastic with an "open in the case of emergency" sticker on it? Or do they get parked up and forgotten about slowly rusting away in the corner of a hanger?
  2. They tend to get put up for 'disposal'. DE&S use either Witham or Everett Aero (EVERETT AERO - HARRIER JUMP JET FOR SALE).

    They tend to either go to collectors (museums) or the scrap man. Generally not airworthy!

    As it happens, when we binned the Jag, they got stuffed away at Bentwaters (where they still are). I think there are about 15-20 aircraft by the side of one of the HAS's. Again awaiting sale to museums. Unfortunately, we dont have the resources like the yanks do where they mothball huge amounts of aircraft at Davis-Monthan. A lot of their types that go in to storage are long term preserved to be able to be put back in to service should the need arise (A10's being the most recent type I can think of). We just tend to stuff them in a hangar up at Shawbury waiting for them to be sold off for scrap.

    Of course, if the aircraft is potentially an embarrassment to the MoD/Govn, they'll spend 200 million to 'secretly' chop them up immediately.......Nimrod MR4 anyone?
  3. A friend of mine has just finished with the Harrier force and he mentioned an RN senior Officer running round the World trying to find some buyers for the Harriers. (AFAIK they are all pretty well spec'd).
  4. Was in our local rag yesterday about Cottesmore closing next thursday and 400 staff getting kept on to look after the harriers until they are sold off.
  5. all the jets are wrapped in brown paper over all possible intakes/openings to stop the ingress of FOD. We are still looking for a buyer but if not they will be scrapped. To scrap them it will cost £1 million per jet because the amount of carbon fibre in them, not many people offer a carbon fibre disposal service!

    some may go to museums and gate guards.

    Attached Files:

  6. Daft question but what are all FAA pilot's doing at the mo if they have **** all to play Goose and Maverick in?
  7. Cutting brown paper shapes?
    • Like Like x 1
  8. Take it when they're not doing that they're flying for Ryan Air to mantain flying hours, that and driving taxis on Thurs nights?
  9. Seconded to the USN for some big deck experience.
  10. I think about 10-12 of them went to the USN on F-18s (preserving deck experience etc etc whilst we await F-35) with the remainder going RW within the FAA; not sure if anyone got the dunt or didn't get signed on or whatever. That said I do recall seeing a Royal Navy Redundancy DCI that stated that if you were "QHI or QOI with recent experience within 6 years", or words to that effect, then you are safe from compulsory redundancy. Everyone else, stand by......

    Within the RAF our GR9 jockeys, almost to a man, went to the GR4 or the Typhoon.

    PS QHI or QOI - Qualified Helicopter Instructor or Qualified Observer Instructor. Pilot or navigator instructor, in plain English.
  11. I do like the slant on that, the MOD could say they are conversant with off the shelf F-18's so might as well save a packet not bothering with F35's!
  12. I thought the USN sent all RN FW guys home? Nothing to exchange with, therefore they were unhappy footing the bill for our guys keeping current?
  13. I thought this was a thread bout the Kidderminster football team who look like making it into the play offs.

  14. These aren't exchange postings.

    From Janes

    RN sends cadre of pilots to train on US carriers

    Reuben F Johnson JDW Correspondent

    Robert Hewson Jane's Air-Launched Weapons Editor

    Additional reporting by

    Peter Felstead Editor
    Key Points


    A larger than usual number of UK pilots are taking part in carrier training in the US

    The move may indicate that the UK favours a commitment to conventional aircraft launched by catapult rather than a STOVL platform

    An uprecedented number of UK Royal Navy (RN) Harrier pilots have begun training for catapult-assisted take-off but arrested recovery (CATOBAR) carrier operations in the United States, information obtained by Jane's has revealed.

    The news further fuels rumours that the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) may be re-assessing its previous commitment to fulfilling the UK's Joint Combat Aircraft (JCA) requirement with the F-35B short take-off and vertical landing (STOVL) variant of the Lockheed Martin Joint Strike Fighter (JSF), instead opting for a conventional aircraft launched by catapult.

    The latter could be the F-35C carrier variant of the JSF, which has a greater range and payload capability than the JSF STOVL variant and also costs slightly less per unit, or even the Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet on which the UK pilots are likely to be certified. The RN's two future Queen Elizabeth-class carriers that would operate the JCA are designed for, but not yet intended to be fitted with CATOBAR equipment.

    The programme for this exchange of aviators is much larger than normal and was apparently initiated in April when a senior US Navy (USN) officer announced training and squadron integration for 12 UK pilots. This officer then briefed the US Commander Naval Air Forces (CNAF) in mid-April.

    Sources who spoke to Jane's on condition of anonymity state that the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations (OpNav) is "driving the requirement and the CNAF is implementing [it]". Given the high level of support, the training and timing for the programme will be high priority for the local F/A-18 fleet replacement training squadrons (FRSs).

    USN sources anticipate that this training programme will be scheduled so that the RN will have 12 fully qualified carrier pilots by 2012. They did not mention whether or not any of these 12 would be trained for the rear-cockpit weapon systems officer (WSO) position in two-seat carrier aircraft or as landing signals officers (LSOs).

    According to the programme plan, eight of the 12 pilots will complete a full syllabus on the Boeing/BAE Systems T-45 jet trainer (a carrier-capable version of the BAE Systems Hawk Mk 60) and a full CAT I syllabus on the F/A-18 Hornet. The CAT I syllabus has recently been designated as the pilot certification training for the F/A-18. Three pilots will complete a partial T-45 syllabus and a full CAT II F/A-18 syllabus, which is the training for qualified pilot transition to the F/A-18. The training regime for the 12th and last pilot has not been specified, but it is anticipated that he will conduct some T-45 Goshawk training and a full CAT I or II syllabus that includes day/night landing carrier qualification. Eleven of the UK pilots will join USN fleet squadrons and will be flying both C/D legacy Hornet and E/F Super Hornet models of the F/A-18. The 12th pilot will remain at one of the FRS locations as an exchange pilot.

    The RN pilots will also fly US Marine Corps (USMC) McDonnell Douglas/BAE Systems AV-8B Harrier IIs.

    It is the much larger number of pilots included (typical exchange programmes with the USN involve only two or three pilots) along with the additional training involved that suggest this pilot training programme is not part of a standard exchange tour.

    "It's typical to take the RAF [Royal Air Force]/RN guy to the carrier for some 'good deal' [carrier] traps," said the USN source, "but they go in daytime only and are scheduled on a 'not to interfere with [regular USN] student traps' basis. In other words they do not have a quota. All 12 of the RN pilots addressed by this training will have a quota."

    Asked about the reasoning behind the programme, one source told Jane's that it is designed to "give additional STOVL and cat-and-trap experience and provide invaluable 'big deck' familiarisation prior to introduction of Queen Elizabeth . It will also further strengthen the bonds between the USN, USMC and RN".

    In conjunction with Jane's reports in July that the UK MoD is continuing to contract Converteam UK for the design, development and demonstration of an electro-magnetic catapult system, news of a cadre of UK pilots being carrier trained would seem to confirm the ministry is reassessing its carrier options. The contractual decision on what variant of F-35 to buy does not have to be made until early in 2011, although RN sources indicated to Jane's in July that the B/C decision would be made as part of the UK's Strategic Defence and Security Review process, so a decision could come this year even if no contract is signed.

    Meanwhile, unsubstantiated reports have emerged that the RN might even be offered an ex-USN carrier as the size of the USN carrier force is reduced from 12 down to 10 ships. This would provide the RN with a conventional 'cat-and-trap' aircraft carrier in advance of the UK's two Queen Elizabeth-class carriers entering service. Although the RN does have experience of operating nuclear-powered submarines, its aircraft carriers have always been conventionally driven. While all USN carriers in service are nuclear powered carrier, the last conventionally powered carrier in USN service, USS Kitty Hawk (CV 63), was decommissioned on 12 May 2009 and is currently maintained as a Ready Reserve Fleet asset.
  15. Why is it so expensive to scrap carbon fibre? It's commonplace in bikes, cars, kayaks, fishing rods etc, is there a specific hazard associated with dipsosal?