On 6th January the MoD announced it had placed a contract for production of SPEAR-3 missiles which the RN described on its website as “the principal strike weapon” of the F-35 flying from the aircraft carriers. Here we look at this weapon and the timetable for its entry into service.
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This month Harrier 809, by respected aviation author Rowland White, is published by Bantam Press. Written in his trademark gripping narrative style, White illuminates some of the lesser-known aspects of the air war during the Falklands conflict.
For the second time in 18 months, the Home Secretary formally requested assistance from the MoD to deal with migrants crossing the English Channel in small boats. Here we look at the background, recent actions and available options for government planners.
In two previous articles (written in 2017) we covered the background, procurement, design and equipping of the Poseidon MRA1 Maritime Patrol Aircraft being purchased by the RAF. With two of the nine aircraft having arrived in the UK in so far, here we provide an update on the progress of this project that is critical to UK naval operations.More
On 13th October the first British-owned jets landed on HMS Queen Elizabeth off the eastern coast of the US. This photo essay covers the arrival of the 4 jets from 17 Squadron and 617 Squadron.
Last week the US Marine Corps formally announced what had been known for some time, that their F-35B jets will join the 2021 Carrier Strike Group (CSG21) operational deployment on board HMS Queen Elizabeth. Here we look at the implications and benefits of this joint operating arrangement.
Deborah Haynes, foreign affairs editor at Sky News has reported that, behind the scenes, the RAF is arguing hard to split the UK purchase of F-35 aircraft into two variants. The F-35B is the only fixed-wing aircraft able to operate from the new QEC aircraft carriers but it’s no secret that the RAF harbours the ambition to procure F-35As as a direct replacement for its land-based Tornado force.
After sensibly postponing the trip for 24 hours due to bad weather, yesterday the first four UK-owned F-35Bs touched down at RAF Marham after a trans-Atlantic flight from the United States. Despite the postponement, the jets have arrived two months ahead of the original schedule and those involved in the programme deserve to be congratulated. These aircraft of 617 Squadron will form part of the initial main armament for the Queen Elizabeth class aircraft carriers and will be the cornerstone of the UK carrier strike capability. The MoD has provided some outstanding imagery and video which tells the story of their arrival.
As HMS Queen Elizabeth undergoes initial sea trials there is considerable discussion about her future embarked air group. Amidst endless media and online gibberish about “aircraft carriers with no aircraft” the UK is in fact, building up its fleet of F-35B Lightnings ready to go to sea. Here John Dunbar considers the concerns about the number of jets that will be available to form the Tailored Air Group, and how their efficiency might be maximised.