Tuesday, 22 Oct 2019

Royal Navy thwarts ‘submarine attack’ on HMS Queen Elizabeth

The Royal Navy foiled an attack on new aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth during a training exercise off the coast of the US.

The ship and the UK's new F-35 fighter jets are being tested under Westlant19, a three-month exercise.

And in one warfighting scenario test, the US Navy attempted to attack the £3billion ship using a submarine.

But the Plymouth based Type-23 Frigate HMS Northumberland and a specialist Merlin Mk2 submarine hunting helicopter thwarted the scenario attack, reports Plymouth Live.

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A Royal Navy spokesman said: "Anti-submarine experts working with HMS Queen Elizabeth have been pitting their wits against an American submarine in the North Atlantic.

"HMS Northumberland and the specialist Merlin Mk2 of 820 Naval Air Squadron have gained invaluable information on tactics and skills required to protect an aircraft carrier from the threat beneath the waves while working with an allied US sub.

"Type 23 frigate Northumberland used her specialist sonars, including the powerful towed array sonar, to hunt the submarine at range, keeping tabs on the sub before ‘destroying’ the target in training exercises.

"Joining in the chase was the RNAS Culdrose-based Merlin Mk2, the aerial submarine hunting experts on Queen Elizabeth.

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"The navy fliers utilised sonar buoys to cover a large area of ocean to prevent the submarine getting a clean shot at any of the UK Carrier Strike Group ships."

Principal Warfare Officer, Lieutenant Commander Kris White, said: “As a submariner, it has been a fantastic opportunity to see life and fight from the other side.

“The challenging environment has been a hurdle the team and I have had to overcome and adapt to but it has been a hugely valuable exercise period, allowing me to utilise my submariner experience, helping to forge the tactics we will require for the Carrier Strike Group in 2021.”

  • HMS Queen Elizabeth
  • Royal Navy

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