UK: Another Landmark in HMS Queen Elizabeth’s Life
A 1,000-tonne section of the Navy’s future flagship HMS Queen Elizabeth was lowered into place on February 8 at Rosyth dockyard – completing the forward section of the carrier. The successful operation comes just a day after the forward island left Portsmouth to join the rest of the ship on the Forth.
Just 24 hours after the forward island sailed from Portsmouth for Scotland, the upper bow was lowered into place, thus completing the forward section of the 65,000-tonne aircraft carrier.
Using the aptly-named Goliath crane, Aircraft Carrier Alliance workers at Rosyth in Scotland successfully moved the 1,000-tonne bow section on to the already completed bulbous and middle bow sections.
The 2,000 staff employed at the Forth yard have now assembled two thirds of the giant vessel.
“The fitting of the upper bow unit means that the majority of the forward half of HMS Queen Elizabeth is now in place,” said Rear Admiral Steve Brunton, director of ship acquisition at the MOD’s Defence Equipment and Support organisation.
“The forward and aft island structures, containing the ship’s bridges, funnels and radar masts, will be fitted in the next few months, followed by the final hull and flight deck sections.
“Assembly is progressing well with major additions almost every week. The team are working very hard at the moment with an increasing focus on completing the inside of the ship, whilst construction of HMS Prince of Wales is also well under way.”
Aircraft Carrier Alliance programme Director Ian Booth added: “Everyone working to complete the Queen Elizabeth knows how important she will be to the future defence of the UK.
“The project is progressing well but there is still much to be done before she is complete. We are completely focused on the task in hand.”
Queen Elizabeth is due to be launched – more accurately ‘floated out’ of the gigantic dry dock – next year, ready to undertake sea trials in 2017, ready for fast jet trials with the F35 Joint Strike Fighter the following year.
Naval Today Staff, February 11, 2013; Image: Royal Navy