Friday, August 7, 2009

MOD to make about face on CTOL for CVF?

There have been reports (though denied by the MOD of course) that they are considering ditching the STOVL F-35B and buying the F-35C instead. This of course would mean the Queen Elizabeth carriers would need to be equipped for CTOL operations. Buying the F-35C is, i feel, the best option anyway as a CTOL carrier means you have greater opportunity for interoperability with the USN and French Navy and can operate "proper" AEW and COD aircraft. The C also has a greater payload and a longer range. The MOD will also like the fact that it will be £2.25 billion cheaper. You have to ask do we need to replace the Harrier with a similar STOVL aircraft or is that a relic of Cold War thinking?

Of course there is the problem of fitting the carriers with catapults, EMALS which is the next-generation electric catapult system being used by the USN on their new generation of carriers has some problems, number 1 being it doesn't actually work yet! The MOD would of course hope and expect it would be fixed by 2020. Of course like anything we'll believe it when we see it!

1 comment:

Alex said...

please, please, please let them do this!!