History made as UK F-35s complete first operational missions

June 25, 2019 – The UK’s newest and most advanced fighter jet, the Lightning F-35B, has successfully completed its first operational missions. F-35s have flown alongside Typhoon aircraft on operational flights over the skies of Syria and Iraq, as part of the ongoing fight against Daesh, the Defence Secretary has confirmed. This follows a successful training period in Cyprus, known as Exercise Lightning Dawn, aimed at building capability for the aircraft and supporting elements. Due to the exceptional performance of the aircraft, pilots, and support staff during this time, it…

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HMS Queen Elizabeth Prepares for Transatlantic Training

June 4, 2019 – HMS Queen Elizabeth, the nation’s future flagship, will deploy in late summer for the eastern seaboard of the US, including a port visit in the Washington area where she will host the Atlantic Future Forum. The UK’s largest and most advanced warship ever will be making the transatlantic journey for the second consecutive year to train alongside the UK’s closest ally. She will also make a number of port calls whilst deployed before returning ahead of Christmas. Whilst in the Washington area she will host the…

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HMS Queen Elizabeth to Join NATO Rapid Reaction Force

June 4, 2019 – The Prime Minister announced today that the Royal Navy will ready the UK’s largest and most advanced warship ever to join allies in forming part of NATO’s major ‘Readiness Initiative’ when she becomes operational. The first of the UK’s Queen Elizabeth class aircraft carriers, together with the formidable F-35 fighter jets, will fly the flag of a Global Britain alongside NATO allies, projecting influence for peace and standing ready to fight, deliver aid and take on terrorism around the world. Prime Minister Theresa May said, “I’m…

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Apache Gunship Trials on HMS Queen Elizabeth

June 4, 2019 – The Army’s ‘flying tank’ has debuted aboard Britain’s biggest warship as the Apache gunship undergoes three days of trials with HMS Queen Elizabeth. Having already hosted RN Merlin and Wildcats and RAF Chinooks to help write the ship’s ‘operations manual’, the team on the carrier are now working with the gunship to practice some of the routines needed to support the Army Air Corps helicopters on operations. Apache operated sporadically from the decks of HMS Illustrious and HMS Ocean – including conducting air strikes at targets…

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Gavin Williamson Unveils Vision for Defense in Global Britain

February 11, 2019 – Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson has outlined the global role of the UK’s Armed Forces and defense industry after leaving the European Union and beyond in a speech at RUSI today. The Defence Secretary acknowledged that the UK faces a world of competing powers, hostile states and stateless ideologies, who are happy to operate in a ‘grey zone’ between war and peace. He claimed it is crucial that Britain’s Armed Forces and defense infrastructure are ready to meet these challenges and do not stand still as the world…

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Scottish yard awarded HMS Queen Elizabeth contract

January 9, 2019 – Babcock’s Rosyth dockyard has been awarded a contract to carry out the first planned dry-dock maintenance of Britain’s largest warship, HMS Queen Elizabeth. A Scottish dockyard has been awarded a contract to carry out the first planned dry-dock maintenance of Britain’s largest warship, HMS Queen Elizabeth, Defence Minister Stuart Andrew has announced. The £5 million contract, won by Babcock, will allow the 65,000-tonne carrier to undergo a routine, planned hull survey and maintenance of her underwater systems over a six-week period at the company’s Rosyth site.…

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HMS Monmouth Returns From F-35B Plane Guard Duty

December 14, 2018 – HMS Monmouth has returned to her home in Devonport after being deployed with the UK’s newest aircraft carrier, HMS Queen Elizabeth. The Type-23 frigate has operated as part of the Carrier Strike Group since the ships sailed in August on the WESTLANT 2018 Deployment. Her role has been to provide security at sea for the Strike Group on the East Coast of the US as the Carrier conducted hugely successful and historic trials with the F35B- Lightning II jets. During her deployment, she travelled over 20,000…

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Another milestone landing on HMS Queen Elizabeth

November 19, 2018 – For the first time a jet has landed backwards on Britain’s new aircraft carrier as HMS Queen Elizabeth and her F-35 Lightnings pass another milestone. RAF test pilot Squadron Leader Andy Edgell flew his specially-adapted stealth fighter facing the stern, not bow, before bringing the jet to a hover, slipping it over the huge flight deck and gently setting it down. The ‘back-to-front’ maneuver, described as “like driving the wrong way down a one-way street” is intended to give pilots and the flight deck team more…

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Future USS Michael Monsoor and HMS Queen Elizabeth Conduct PHOTOEX

November 16, 2018 – Two of the world’s most technologically sophisticated warships, the future USS Michael Monsoor (DDG 1001) and the British Royal Navy aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth (R08), conducted a photo exercise (PHOTOEX) with USS Lassen (DDG 82) and RFA Tidespring (A136), November 11. The rendezvous was a reminder of the long alliance between two maritime nations. “To come together on Veterans/Remembrance Day was a fitting way to commemorate the 100th Anniversary of the end of World War I,” said Capt. Scott Smith, Michael Monsoor’s commanding officer. “While…

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RFA Fort Victoria Returns from Refit

November 8, 2018 – Nearly ready to take up her place in HMS Queen Elizabeth’s task group is supply ship RFA Fort Victoria – at sea for the first time this year. The 24-year-old support ship is heading for Faslane after leaving Birkenhead, her home for more than 12 months, as her sailors prepare for renewed front-line duties. In the hands of the world-famous Cammell Laird yard – where battleships HMS Prince of Wales and Rodney, the third and fourth HMS Ark Royal were built – Fort Vic underwent both…

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HMS Queen Elizabeth Visits New York

October 19, 2018 – Britain’s biggest warship, HMS Queen Elizabeth, today made waves in the Big Apple beginning a historic week-long visit to New York. The ultimate symbol of British naval power dropped anchor within sight of the Statue of Liberty and the skyscrapers of Lower Manhattan for seven days in New York’s Upper Bay – in full view of Ellis and Liberty Island tourists and thousands of commuters on the Staten Island ferry. The visit – on the back of three weeks of intensive maiden trials with the new…

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First test bombs dropped from HMS Queen Elizabeth’s F-35s

October 18, 2018 – The first bombs have been dropped from F-35 Lightning fighter jets conducting trials on board Britain’s newest aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth. The inert GBU-12 Paveway II laser guided precision bombs were dropped off the east coast of the USA, marking another significant milestone in the carrier’s trials. Adding the 500lb bombs to the jets for take-off has enabled the trials teams to see how the jets behave when carrying various weights, gathering crucial test data. It is the first time the American-made bombs have ever…

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F-35 pilot makes history with revolutionary method of landing jets on HMS Queen Elizabeth

October 15, 2018 – A revolutionary method of landing an F-35 Lightning fighter jet on a ship has been carried out for the first time on board the UK’s newest aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth. British test pilot Peter Wilson made history when he conducted the first ever shipborne rolling vertical landing (SRVL) this weekend – a method which looks like a conventional aircraft landing but requires even more intense skill and precision. Previously the jets have conducted only vertical landings, hovering by the side of the ship before moving…

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F-35s Conduct First Night Landings on HMS Queen Elizabeth

October 3, 2018 – Aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth has reached another milestone in her flight trials with the first night-time landings of F-35 Lightning jets. Britain’s biggest warship is currently conducting flight testing off the east coast of the United States and part of that is practicing landing in darkness. These tests were carried out with and without the aid of night-vision technology, with the pilots and aircraft handlers successfully guiding the fast fighter jets onto the flight deck. Pilots initially flew in using only ambient light and the…

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HMS Monmouth Sails Into Baltimore for Fleet Week

October 3, 2018 – After several weeks largely in the shadow of Britain’s biggest warship, HMS Monmouth will be seen by upwards of 300,000 people over the next five days. The Plymouth-based frigate joins more than a dozen warships, classic sailing vessels and even a World War 2 Liberty ship at one of the biggest naval ‘festivals’ in the USA: Maryland Fleet Week/Baltimore Air Show. Since leaving Devonport in August, Monmouth has spent her time shadowing HMS Queen Elizabeth, the carrier’s guardian against the prying eyes of hostile submarines and…

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