The aft island, the final section of the UK’s second aircraft carrier took to the sea yesterday, December 10.
The control tower of the ship is being transferred to Babcock’s dockyard in Rosyth, Scotland.
The 750-tonne section, which will control aircraft operations on HMS Prince of Wales, left BAE Systems’ shipyard in Glasgow for the journey by barge.
The section, which is ten weeks ahead of schedule, was driven from the ship hall by a platform with 144 wheels, 16 axles and a single remote control onto a seagoing barge for its 1,335 mile journey around the south of England.
Iain Stevenson, QE Class Project Director at BAE Systems, said: “This is a proud day for our employees throughout the UK, as well as our partners in the Aircraft Carrier Alliance.To see the final section delivered to Rosyth, ahead of schedule and to an incredible standard of engineering is testament to the dedication, skill and ingenuity of all those working on the programme.”
The Queen Elizabeth-class are the first aircraft carriers in the world to use a twin-island design. The forward island contains the bridge and is primarily responsible for the command of the ship.
The aft island is responsible for the ship’s mission systems and acts as an aircraft control tower for the F-35B Lightning II jets, as well as Royal Navy helicopters.
HMS Queen Elizabeth and HMS Prince of Wales were constructed in blocks in different shipyards throughout the UK and are being delivered by the Aircraft Carrier Alliance which is a partnering relationship between BAE Systems, Thales UK, Babcock and the Ministry of Defence.
Image: Royal Navy