War Zone – Wildcat helicopters tasked with protecting Royal Navy ships can carry 10 of the lightweight air-to-surface missiles now, and potentially 20 soon.
Navy Lookout – The second iteration of the National Shipbuilding Strategy (NSbS) is due to be published soon. Here we consider the ambitions for the long-term naval construction programme and revival of the maritime enterprise.
War Zone – The Banshee target drone could help pave the way for regular drone operations from the decks of British carriers.
USNI News – Steel for the U.K. Royal Navy’s first new Type 31 frigate was cut on Sept. 24, raising hopes that the service may secure a larger fleet of frontline warships in the long term.
UK Defence Journal – The Ministry of Defence have confirmed that all Type 45 Destroyers will have recieved upgrades to their power systems by the mid-2020s.
(Thanks to Alain)
Defense News – The U.K. Royal Navy wants a future fleet with its sensors and weapons disaggregated and its ships flexible enough to change missions as needed, as the service acknowledges that traditional technology superiority may not be possible in the coming decades.
Naval News – Royal Navy River-class Offshore Patrol Vessels (OPV) HMS Spey and HMS Tamar have today begun deployment to the Indo-Pacific region to bolster Britain’s presence in the region.
CIMSEC – Despite its limited immediate impact, the significance of this FONOP cannot be overstated. Since the end of the Cold War, very few European nations have taken initiatives to upend their strategic interests in the face of powerful adversaries and have instead been relying on the American security umbrella. A multitude of factors are at play to influence this return to geopolitics in Europe, from the specter of Trump’s alienating policies towards America’s allies and partners, to the advent of a multipolar world. Yet this FONOP and renewed European interest in the Indo-Pacific shows that even a strategically independent Europe will remain a natural partner to America for military cooperation and burden-sharing, not just due to shared economic interests, but also common values.
Newsweek – China’s nuclear-powered submarines may have been using the U.K.’s aircraft carrier group for target practice before intentionally revealing themselves to British warships, a Communist Party newspaper said on Monday.
(Thanks to Alain)
Global Times – A report by a UK media organization recently claimed a UK aircraft carrier strike group that sailed in the South China Sea in late July spotted Chinese nuclear-powered submarines that shadowed it during its voyage, but Chinese military experts said on Monday that the report is not credible, and is aimed at showing off the group’s presence and boasting of the its anti-submarine capability.
War on the Rocks – Post-Brexit Britain has entered a new phase in security policy, one in which the use of its maritime posture as a tool of national statecraft will determine the global nature of its international standing.
War on the Rocks – Why is the Royal Navy sending two of its smallest warships to the world’s largest ocean? The First Sea Lord’s announcement of the Royal Navy’s intention to forward deploy two offshore patrol vessels to the Indo-Pacific has been met with skepticism. Given the region’s sheer size and the growing menace of China within the South China Sea, some argue that a frigate is a better platform for this role. But using a frigate, the work horse of the fleet, for all overseas tasking is akin to using a sledgehammer to crack a nut. Each new maritime task needs to be judged on its own merits considering its objectives and operating environment.
UK Defence Journal – The UK will operate two Littoral Response Groups, one deploying to the Euro-Atlantic region and the other deploying to the Indo-Pacific.
Defense News – Five of the Royal Navy’s Type 45 destroyers are unavailable for deployment, leaving just one warship in the class capable of operations, defense procurement minister Jeremy Quin acknowledged this week.
(Thanks to Alain)
1945 – Two cheers for Great Britain! Why only two? London merits two cheers because it has accepted that “Global Britain” must play its part in a democratic armada meant to face down aggressors who menace their neighbors while degrading freedom of the sea.
USNI News – The British aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth (RO8) and its carrier strike group carried out a two-day exercise called Exercise Konkan with the Indian Navy from July 21 to 22 in the Bay of Bengal. The exercise was designed to hone the ability of the two navies to operate together in the maritime domain, according to an Indian Ministry of Defence release. The exercise included anti-submarine warfare, anti-air and anti-surface warfare drills.
Reuters – Britain said on Tuesday it would permanently deploy two warships in Asian waters after its Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier and escort ships sail to Japan in September through seas where China is vying for influence with the United States and Japan.
War Zone – HMS Queen Elizabeth joined American and Dutch warships in the Gulf of Aden, an important maritime crossroads.
War Zone – New missiles, and more of them, are set to enhance the Daring class, especially in its vital role of protecting British aircraft carriers.
BBC – More than 20 Russian aircraft and two coastguard ships have shadowed a British warship sailing near Crimea.
Aviationist – UK Carrier Strike Group launching F-35B missions in support of Operation Shader from the eastern Mediterranean Sea.
USNI News – The tracking data of two NATO warships was faked off the coast of a Russian controlled naval base in the Black Sea while the actual ships were moored 180 miles away.
CIMSEC – This British naval deployment gives both political and operational support to the bigger U.S. efforts in the Indo-Pacific. The unstated rationale is sharing the burden against China.
War Zone – The last thing Britain seems to need right now is a Royal Yacht, a ship that could be as big of a security risk as it is a national symbol.
BBC – On 20 April, the Royal Navy’s latest nuclear-powered hunter-killer submarine, HMS Anson, emerged from a vast construction hall at Barrow-in-Furness, travelled down a slipway and entered the water. All 7,400 tonnes of it. Around 260 miles away in Plymouth, another submarine made its debut that same day. A minnow compared to HMS Anson, this secretive nine-tonne craft may have greater implications for the future of the navy than the £1.3bn nuclear boat.