Council on Geostrategy – While the fight to repel Russia’s territorial ambitions takes place in Ukraine, this war has also proved that a critical component of the centre of gravity of European economic security rests on the vulnerability of an invisible network of undersea connectors. More broadly, undersea spaces matter to Euro-Atlantic security, and not least to the United Kingdom (UK) as an insular nation.
Category Archives: RoyalNavy
Snapshot: The Royal Navy escort fleet in March 2023
Navy Lookout – In this article we summarise the current activity of RN surface combatants and look at the health of the force.
British hunter-killer nuclear submarine in Gibraltar after long Mediterranean patrol
Majorca Daily Bulletin – One of Britain´s latest nuclear submarines has docked in Gibraltar after a long Mediterranean patrol which has seen her tracking the Russian navy. HMS Audacious is returning home after many months of operations across the Mediterranean.
(Thanks to Alain)
In focus: the Fleet Solid Support ship design
Navy Lookout – There has been plenty of coverage of the Fleet Solid Support ship procurement process but here we take the first detailed look at the winning ship design.
The Royal Navy’s Astute class submarines: Part 2 – platform design
Navy Lookout – In the second of a series of articles focussing on the Astute class SSNs, we look at the overall design of the boat, its propulsion and accommodation arrangements.
Peregrine rotary wing UAV to enter service with the Royal Navy
Navy Lookout – Under the Future Tactical Uncrewed Air System (FUTAS) programme, the RN has selected the Schiebel S-100 Camcopter which will operate in the intelligence-gathering, surveillance and reconnaissance role, initially from warships based in the Persian Gulf.
Keeping the fleet stealthy – the acoustic ranges used to support the Royal Navy
Navy Lookout – As part of a series covering UK naval infrastructure, here we look at the little-known facilities used to evaluate the acoustic and magnetic signatures of the navy’s ships and submarines.
Royal Navy orders investigation into nuclear submarine ‘repaired with glue’
The Guardian – The Royal Navy has ordered an urgent investigation amid claims that workers on a Trident nuclear armed submarine fixed broken bolts in the vessel’s reactor chamber using glue.
Mothership to support autonomous mine hunting systems arrives in the UK
Navy Lookout – Offshore Support Vessel, MV Island Crown arrived in Devonport yesterday on her delivery voyage from Ulsteinvik, Norway. She will join the Royal Fleet Auxiliary and operate Uncrewed Surface Vehicles (USV) in support of mine countermeasures tasks around the UK and in European waters.
Royal Navy Begins NSM Anti-Ship Missile Upgrade On Type 23 Frigate
Naval News – The Royal Navy’s Type 23 frigate HMS Somerset announced the commencement of Naval Strike Missile (NSM) upgrade work.
The Type 32 frigate programme – over before it began?
Navy Lookout – There are strong indications the five Type 32 frigates that would follow on from the Type 31 programme will be axed due to lack of funding. Here we look at the implications of this decision and its impacts on industry and the future RN fleet.
UK purchases commercial vessel for conversion to ocean surveillance ship
Navy Lookout – The offshore support vessel, MV Topaz Tangaroa has been purchased by the UK Ministry of Defence for conversion to a Multi-Role Ocean Surveillance (MROS) ship. She will arrive at Cammell Laird shipyard on Merseyside this week for conversion and will serve in the Royal Fleet Auxiliary renamed RFA Proteus.
Developing the Type 31 frigate
Navy Lookout – To some extent, the capability of the Royal Navy’s Type 31 frigate cannot be fully appreciated without understanding the background to its development. Public perception has perhaps been over-focused on cost and initial armament, obscuring what has been achieved. In this article, we look at the procurement process and design philosophy that underpins the project.
The Royal Navy’s Astute class submarines: Part 1 – development and delivery
Navy Lookout – In the first of a series of articles focussing on the Astute class SSNs, we look at the programme’s history and how decisions made decades ago continue to impact today’s fleet.
UK Forward-Deployed Frigate Program Enhances Availability And Operational Effect
Navy Lookout – The UK has completed the first phase of its forward-deployed frigate programme, with the Type 23 frigate HMS Montrose handing over to sister ship HMS Lancaster in the Gulf. The programme has demonstrated improved availability at sea and improved operational effect.
Crowsnest Airborne Surveillance and Control due to achieve Initial Operating Capability in 2023
Navy Lookout – The Merlin helicopters equipped with the Crowsnest ASaC role kit provide are a critical aspect of the carrier strike programme. In this article, we look at how the troubled Crowsnest development project and efforts to bring the system into frontline service have progressed in the last year or so.
In focus: delivering the Type 26 Frigates
Navy Lookout – A multi-billion pound project to build 8 warships for the Royal Navy is now well underway on the Clyde. Here we look at the Type 26 frigate project in context, its progress to date and the likely future delivery schedule.
Tilting at windmills? UK Defence and the Indo-Pacific
Wavell Room – Far from presenting a binary choice between European and Indo-Pacific theatres, UK Defence’s Integrated Review refresh should seek to harmonise these seemingly divergent approaches. Understanding the different utility of Naval, Air and Land forces in meeting regional challenges and political goals would go some way to squaring the circle.
Brief UK Carrier Strike Group 2022 deployment wraps up
Navy Lookout – HMS Queen Elizabeth, her air group and escorts recently conducted a three-week period of training and re-familiarisation. Here we round up RN aircraft carrier activity for the latter part of this year.
Royal Navy purchases its first uncrewed submarine
Navy Lookout – MSubs Ltd has been awarded a £15.4m contract to build the first XLUUV (Extra Large Uncrewed Underwater Vehicle) owned by the Royal Navy.
A guide to the Type 26 Frigate
Navy Lookout – As the first of class, HMS Glasgow prepares to begin the fitting out phase of construction, here we take an overview of the Type 26 frigate design. This is a highly complex warship and it is not possible to cover every aspect of the vessel in a single article but this provides a primer on the overall design, weapons and sensors.
How Can the Marines Learn From the Falklands War?
War on the Rocks – The U.S. Marine Corps has made it a priority to address the rise of great-power competition in the Indo-Pacific. British forces in the Falklands operated in a similar manner to how the commandant envisions marines operating in the future: small formations distributed across vast expanses of maritime terrain, relatively limited indirect fire support, and limited traditional close air support. Vertical lift aircraft were critical to enabling British maneuver and logistical sustainment in the South Atlantic. But these aircraft are largely absent from new Marine Corps concepts.
Royal Navy to buy the Naval Strike Missile
Navy Lookout – While meeting with his Norwegian counterpart on board HMS Queen Elizabeth in Oslo today, Defence Secretary Ben Wallace has finally confirmed the RN will purchase the Kongsberg Naval Strike Missile (NSM) to fulfil the interim anti-ship missile requirement.
Team Resolute selected as preferred bidder to build the Fleet Solid Support Ships
Navy Lookout – Subject to final ministerial approval, the Team Resolute consortium comprising BMT, Harland & Wolff and Navantia UK has been selected ahead of Team UK to build the three Fleet Solid Support Ships. This decision has been announced earlier than expected and will prove to be controversial.
A future vision for the Royal Navy – the Maritime Operating Concept
Navy Lookout – In September 2022 the RN published the Maritime Operating Concept (MarOpC) which essentially lays out a vision of how the RN and other stakeholders in the maritime domain will evolve and develop to meet the challenges of the future. Here we examine aspects of the document and look at some of the questions around taking its ideas and making them a reality.
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