Carrier-Strike Capability Returning To U.K.
Britain’s largest ever warships will not serve as a base for fixed-wing aircraft for at least another four years, but their introduction is being felt across the breadth of the country’s armed forces.
At 65,000 tons, HMS Queen Elizabeth and its sister ship—HMS Prince of Wales—will dwarf the Invincible-class carriers they will replace, while a host of new technologies will transform how carriers are operated and maintained.
When the Queen Elizabeth is fully operational in 2020, Navy commanders see the ships being at the center of a Responsive Force Task Group, capable of handling a wide variety of rotary-wing platforms as well as a squadron of the planned F-35B Lightning II Joint Strike Fighters (JSF).
Computer-generated image courtesy of the Royal Navy.