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11: Weapons

12: Armament

13: Targets

2017-12-31

  Notes  

 
 
 

  BRITISH AIRCRAFT CARRIERS  

 
The story which did happen ... outside Atlantic Air Combat
 
 
 
 

Introduction

The Royal Navy put up an impressive number of aircraft carriers during the so called Cold War.  However, most were retired by the mid fifties, and several underwent considerable rebuilt during the sixties.   So not only the list of carriers is of interest but also their availability.   This page will aim at identifying this information before proceeding with the choice of carriers classes and carriers for the Royal Navy.   Somehow, the result is already outlined on the Carriers Classes page, but like much else this preliminary result is subjected to corrections or modifications, at least to analysis.

Aircraft Carriers Availability
The time line below focuses on the 1963-1967 time frame, and the following color coding is used :
  : available (aircraft carrier)   : major rebuild
  : available (helicopter carrier)   : use other than carrier
  : refit period

Clearly, only the available periods are of interest and while the table only shows years by quarters, it's precise enough for our purpose.  Then, if we want HMS Eagle to remain available in AAC we would just have to "decide" upon different dates better suiting AAC.   But let's start with historical facts before tinkering with them :

Hull

ID Name Class in out 1962 1963 1964 1965 1966 1967 in out Notes

R05

E Eagle Audacious 1946 >> - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1972

1964:SeaCat

R09

R Ark Royal Audacious 1955 >> - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1980

1964:SeaCat

R07

A Albion Centaur 1954 >> - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1972

1962:Helicopter

R08

B Bulwark Centaur 1954 >> - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1981

1960:Helicopter

R06

C Centaur Centaur 1953 >> - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1971

1966:"hostel"

R12

H Hermes Centaur 1960 >> - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1985

1964:SeaCat

R38

V Victorious Illustrious 1941 >> - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1968

-

R16

- Triumph Colossus 1946 >> - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1975

1958:Workshop

R67

- Formidable Illustrious 1940 1953 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

-

R87

- Illustrious Illustrious 1940 1955 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

-

R92

- Indomitable Illustrious 1941 1955 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

-

R86

- Implacable Implacable 1944 1955 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

-

R10

- Indefatigable Implacable 1944 1956 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

-

R76

- Pioneer Colossus 1945 1954 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

-

R62

- Glory Colossus 1945 1956 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

-

R64

- Theseus Colossus 1944 1957 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

-

R68

- Ocean Colossus 1946 1958 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

-

R51

- Perseus Colossus 1945 1958 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

-

R61

- Colossus Colossus 1946 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1974

-

R63

- Venerable Colossus 1948 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1968

-

R71

- Vengeance Colossus 1956 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 2001

-

R31

- Warrior Colossus 1958 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1968

-

R36

- Magnificient Majestic 1948 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1957

-

R95

- Powerful Majestic 1957 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1970

-

R49

- Hercules Majestic 1961 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1997

-

R93

- Terrible Majestic 1948 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1973

-

R77

- Majestic Majestic 1955 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1982

-

R97

- Leviathan Majestic - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

-

As the table shows, while the RN operated 8 carriers in one role or another, HMS Eagle was unavailable for most of the period and the situation was half as bad for HMS Ark Royal, with HMS Victorious and HMS Centaur bearing the main burden before the latter was turned into accommodations.

Cheating the Availability Time Line
Setting aside HMS Albion (an helicopter carrier as from 1962), and HMS Triumph (which AAC keeps for vintage aircrafts purposes), we end up with the following simplified/cheated AAC availability time line, with either "historic", "classic" or "modernized" ships showing their refit moments :
Modernized? Deck Displacement Dimensions 1963: 2 1964: 3 1965: 4 1966: 5 1967: 5
R06 Centaur 20,260/27,800 738×121ft - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
R08 Bulwark 22,000/27,800 738×123ft - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
R38 Victorious 1950.10-1957.12 30,530/35,500 781×157ft - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
R05 Eagle 1959.05-1964.05 43,000/50,536 813×171ft         - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
R09 Ark Royal 1964.01-1964.11 43,060/49,950 808×158ft                 - - - - - - - - - - - -
R12 Hermes 1964.03-1966.05 23,000/27,800 775×148ft - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
R16 Triumph 13,200/18,000 694×080ft - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
R07 Albion                                        

Which would make AAC end up with the following kind of vessels
Classic carriers (2) provide for early jets : Sea Hawk, Wyvern (includes the Gannet)
Modern carriers (4) provide for later  jets : Scimitar, Sea Vixen FAW1/FAW2, Buccaneer
HMS Triumph provides for piston engined aircrafts : Sea Fury, Avenger (but the Wyvern is possible)
HMS Albion provides for helicopters (should we need any in AAC)
VTOL carrier (2) pvovide for the fantasy Sea Kestrel

Starting with two carriers, and ending up with 5 or potentially 6, this cheated availability time line caters for "losses" and allows for a growing force in view of a grand finale.

Cheating the Aircraft Carriers Appearances - Illustration

In order to simplify the representation of these various carriers it is suggested to cheat their respective designs as follows :

Classic carriers : the Centaur class essentially being an enlarged Colossus, so that's how they will look like.  It shall also apply to the HMS Albion as a potential helicopter carrier.  Like real Centaur carriers, they will have two bow catapults.

Modern carriers : while their real respective dimensions were not exactly the same, they will nevertheless show as siblings only differenciated by the position of the elevators and their catapults.

Aircrafts Types
The "deck" operational life of the various types of aircrafts operated by the Royal Navy is naturally a key element.  If the background data is anything to go by it means that if the Seahawk were in service with the FAA up to 1969, clearly it wasn't on the deck of a carrier.  The table also shows the end of use of the Gannet in its ASW role, leading to a time line cheat.

The following coded colors are used in this table :
 Timeline : historic  Aircraft : presumably excluded from AAC
 Timeline : cheated  Aircraft : exclusively handled by the game AI

Note: AAC ID is used for aircrafts - see British Aircrafts Designation

- AAC.ID Name in out 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64 65 66 67 in out Notes
AT HKFB11 SeaFury - -                         - - HMS Triumph
AT W35S4 Wyvern.S4 - -                         - - HMS Centaur
FF HK40B6 SeaHawk.FGA6 - -               - -
FF DH112M SeaVenom.FAW21 - -               - -
FF DH112N SeaVenom.FAW22 - -             - -
FF S544F1 Scimitar.F1 - -                 - -
FF DH110A SeaVixen.FAW1 - -                 - -
FF DH110B SeaVixen.FAW2 - -                 - -
BB B103S1 Buccaneer.S1 - -           - -
BB B103S2 Buccaneer.S2 - -       - -





















ASW TBM3E Avenger.AS - -                         - - HMS Triumph
ASW G17S4 Gannet.AS4 - -                         - -
ASW HSS1N Wessex.HAS1 - -             - -
ASW HSS1N Wessex.HAS3 - -       - -
ASW HSS1N Whirlwind.HAS7 - -                       - -





















AEW A1D5W Skyraider.AEW1 - -                   - -
AEW G17W3 Gannet.AEW3 - -                 - -





















TM G17C4 Gannet.COD4 - -           - -





















PG HH05N Dragonfly - -                   - -
PG HH19F Whirlwind.HAR5 - -             - -
PG HHAS1 Wasp.HAS1 - -         - -
PG HH34D Wessex.HU5 - -         - -

Aircraft Quantities  -  Carrier Air Groups

The notion of "Carrier Air Group" refers altogether to the Squadrons (not referred to in this table), the types and quantities of aircrafts operated aboard carriers.  Again, if the data collected is anything to go by, we would have the following  RN CAGs, covering all essential roles, namely : FF/AT/BB, ASW/SAR, COD, AEW, and PG with the last two of being exclusively handled by the AI.

In the absence of dedicated recce aircrafts, the reconnaissance role will be handled via recce pods or a recce pack for the Buccaneer weapons bay.

Like in the previous table, some aircrafts mentioned in the table are presumably excluded from AAC (but we still have to keep helicopters fans happy...).  Naturally these "standardized" CAGs aren't historically accurate, as only HMS Eagle seems to have boarded Scimitars, Sea Vixens and Buccaneers at the same time, but their (maximum) size is thus consistent with background data.

This information needs further refinements, especially to cater for aircrafts whose "operational life" is artificially extended (the Sea Hawk in particular).  A clear option would be to have the Sea Hawk as a default aircraft and switch another type into the list of types to be acquired (eg: the Scimitar) or to swap the Scimitar in favour of the Sea Hawk on the decks of the HMS Centaur and HMS Bulwark (so the table should read : 8¹ Sea Hawk or 8² Scimitar, etc).

      R16 R06 R08 R38 R05 R09 R12 R03
      Triumph Centaur Bulwark Victorious Eagle Ark Royal Hermes Audacity
      Colossus Centaur Centaur Illustrious Audacious Audacious Centaur™ Audacity
  Aircraft Aircraft  Real   AAC   Real   AAC   Real   AAC   Real   AAC   Real   AAC   Real   AAC   Real   AAC   Real   AAC 
  AAC.ID Name ? ? ? - 60 63 - 1957 - 59 64 - 1964 - 1965 - 64 66 - None -
AT HKFB11 SeaFury - 8 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
AT W35S4 Wyvern - - - - 8 - 8 - - 4³ - 8³ - 8³ - - 4³ - -
FF HK40B6 SeaHawk - - 14 - 8¹ 16 8¹ - - 4¹ - 8¹ - 8¹ - - 4¹ - -
FF DH112C SeaVenom - - 8 - - 8 - 8 - - - - - - - - - - -
FF S544F1 Scimitar - - - 8 8² - 8² 8 - 4² 4 8² 12 8² 8 - 4² - -
FF DH110C SeaVixen - - - 9 - - - 8 8 4 16 8 14 8 12 12 8 - -
FF FGN2 SeaKestrel - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - (8) 8
BB B103S2 Buccaneer - - - - - - - - 16 4 14 8 - 8 - 7 8 - -
ASW TBM3E Avenger.AS - 4 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
ASW G17S4 Gannet.AS4 - - - - 4 6 4 - - 4 - 4 - 4 - - 4 - -
ASW HH19F Whirlwind.HAS - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
ASW HSS1N Wessex.HAS3 - - - - - 5 - - - - 5 - 8 - 5 5 - - -
AEW A1D5W Skyraider.AEW1 - 2 4 4 3 4 3 - - - - - - - - - - - -
AEW G17W3 Gannet.AEW3 - - - - - - - - 4 3 4 3 4 3 4 4 3 - -
COD TBM3R Avenger - 1 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
COD G17C4 Gannet.COD4 - - - - 1 - 1 - - 1 1 1 1 1 - 1 1 - -
PG HH05N Dragonfly - - 1 - - 1 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
PG HH19F Whirlwind.HAR5 - 2 - - 2 - 2 - 5 2 1 2 1 2 1 - 2 (2) 2
PG HH34D Wessex.HU5 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1 - - -
      - 17 33 26 25 40 25 24 33 22 45 34 40 34 30 30 30 - -

Ships' Armament

Perhaps a more trivial subject but nevertheless playing a role in AAC, various kinds of anti-aircraft armament were carried aboard these vessels, even if 3inch and 4½inch guns actually were dual purpose.  Most guns were removed during the various refits and modernizations these vessels were submitted to and here is a quick comparison table, with the exception of HMS Triumph, not mentioned in the table, but whose details will be found on the Colossus Class page.

Armament in AAC is yet to be defined - information below should be read as a preliminary draft

ARMAMENT R06   R07   R08   R12   R38   R05   R09  
QUICK Centaur in Albion in Bulwark in Hermes in Victorious in Eagle in ArkRoyal in
COMPARISON Real AAC Real AAC Real AAC Real AAC Real AAC Real AAC Real AAC
2×4.5"/45 (twin) - - - - - - - - - - 8² - 8² -
2×3.0"/50 (twin) - - - - - - - - 6 6 - 4 - 4
6×40mm (sextuple) 2 - 2ª - 2ª - - - - - 8ª - 5ª -
4×40mm (quad) - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
2×40mm (twin) 8 8 8¹ 8 8¹ 8 5 5 - 1 2ª 1 2ª 1
1×40mm (single) 4 - 4ª - 4ª - - - 6 - 9ª - - -
1×3pdr saluting gun 4 - 4 - 4 - 4 - - - 4 - 4 -
4×SeaCat GWS22 - - - - - - - 2 - - 6 2 4 2
Notes - - [ª] 62':out.all - - - - - - - [²] 64':out.4 - - -
- - - [¹] '62:out.4 - - - - - - - [ª] 64':out.all - - -
 

Background Data
(partly supplied by Eswube, a contribuyor to AAC and to shipbucket.com)


Colossus and Majestic Class
General Basic Data of the Original Design Years Squadron Qty ID Aircrafts

Displacement: 13,200 tons standard, 18,000 tons full load
Dimensions: L=694ft, Beam =80'00"
Propulsion: 4 boilers, 2 shaft parsons geared turbines 36,000hp
Speed: 25 knots
Range: 7000 nautical miles at full speed.
Complement: 1300
Aviation Facilities:
Hangar : 332' x 52' x 17.5'
Flight deck:
Arrester wires : 10 x 15,000 lbs, 2 x crash barriers
Catapults : 1 x BH.3 145, 16,000lbs at 66 knots
Elevators : 2 × 15,000 lbs
Elevators : fwd: 45×34ft - aft:  45×34_ft
Aviation fuel : 98,000 gal
Aircraft:
Armament:
variable amount of 40mm Bofors or 2pdg "pom pom" buns
variable amount of 20mm Oerlikon guns
Radars:
-
-
-

Flight deck recognition letter:

Time Line :
-


The original data regarding carrier air groups is not to be relied upon as these essentially apply to piston engined aircraft while in AAC, most Colossus and Majestic carriers will be associated with jet aircrafts.  Most CAG data are from other ships than RN
R95 Arromanches : 4th campaigh to Indochina
1953.09
1954.09
--- 18
16
2
F6F5
SB2C5
HH05
Hellcat
Helldiver
Dragonfly
R95 Arromanches : Suez campaigh
1956.10
1956.12
--- 14
10
2
F4U7
TBM
HH25
Corsair
Avenger
Retriever
R81 Karel Doorman
1963
1963
--- 10
14
2
HK40
TBM
HSS1
Sea Hawk
Avenger
Seabat
R71 Vengeance
1946
1946
812
1850
16
16
F4Ux
---
Corsair
Firefly.FR1
19..
19..
--- -- -- --
19..
19..
--- -- -- --
19..
19..
--- -- -- --
19..
19..
--- -- -- --
19..
19..
-- -- -- --
Centaur Class
R06 HMS Centaur Years Squadron Qty Aircrafts

Displacement: 20,260 tons standard ; 27,800 tons full load
Dimensions: 737.75 oa x 120.5 x 27.8 feet
Propulsion: 4 Admiralty 3-drum boilers, 2 shafts, 76,000 shp turbines
Speed: 28 knots
Range: 5,040 nmiles at 20 knots ; 3,500 tons fuel oil
Complement: 1390 (including air group)
Aviation Facilities:
Hangar : 329 x 62 x 17.5 ft
Flight deck: 733 x 120 ft axial
Arrester wires : 6 35,000 lb (1960)
Catapults : 2 BS4 40,000 lb bow steam catapults (1958)
Elevators : 2 35,000 lb lifts
Elevators : fwd: 54×44ft - aft:  54× 44ft
Aviation fuel : 349,000 gallons (AVCAT & AVGAS)
Aircraft: up to up to 22 (1960)
Armament:
2 sextuple Bofors 40 mm AA
8 twin Bofors 40 mm
4 single Bofors 40 mm
4 single 3 pdr saluting guns
Radars:
Type 960 : Surveillance
Type 965 : Air Search (1963)
Type 982 ; Fighter Control
Type 277 : Fighter Direction
Type 983 ; Height-finding

Flight deck recognition letter: C (1954-1966)

Time Line :
1944.04 - 1953.09 : completed
1955.06 - 1956.01 : repairs
1956.05 - 1958.09 : modernisation : 6° angled landing area
                              2 sextuple, 4 dual and 2 single Bofors removed
                              beam increased t 127ft
1960.09 - 1961.02 : refit (arrester wires upgraded tà 35,000lb
1962.11 - 1963.02 : repairs
1963.05 - 1963.11 : refit (Type 965 radar)
1965.12 - 1971.02 : used as accommodation ship

1954
1956
806
810
820
Ship Flight
9
9
6
1
Sea Hawk FGA6
Sea Fury FB11
Avenger AS
Dragonfly HR5
1956 803/806
814
Ship Flight
18
6
1
Sea Hawk FGA6
Gannet AS4
Dragonfly HR5
1958
1960
801
891
810
849/D
Ship Flight
14
8
6
4
1
Sea Hawk FGA6
Sea Venom FAW22
Gannet AS4
Skyraider AEW1
Dragonfly HR5
1961
1963
807
893
849/A
824
8
9
4
5
Scimitar F1
Sea Vixen FAW1
Skyraider AEW3
Whirlwind HAS7
1963
1965
892
849/A
815
9
4
5
Sea Vixen FAW1
Gannet AEW3
Wessex HAS1
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
R07 HMS Albion Years Squadron Qty Aircrafts

Displacement: 22,00 tons standard ; 27,800 tons full load
Dimensions: 737.75 oa x 123 x 27.8 feet
Dimensions: 737 oa x 123.5 x 28.25 feet (when helicopter carrier)
Propulsion: 4 Admiralty 3-drum boilers, 2 shafts, 78,000 shp turbines
Speed: 28 knots
Range: 6,000 nmiles at 20 knots ; 4,083 tons fuel oil
Complement: 1596 (including air group)
Aviation Facilities:
Hangar : 329 x 62 x 17.5 ft
5.75° angled deck: 732 x 84 ft
Arrester wires : 6 30,000 lb arrester wires
Catapults : 2 BH5 30,000 lb hydraulic catapults at bow
Elevators : 2 35,000 lb lifts
Elevators : fwd: 54×44ft - aft:  54× 44ft
Aviation fuel : 349,000 gallons (AVCAT & AVGAS/MOGAS)(1962)
Aircraft: up to 42 or 30 helicopters (1962)
Armament:
2 sextuple Bofors 40 mm AA (removed in 1962)
8 twin Bofors 40 mm (4 removed in 1962)
4 single Bofors 40 mm (removed in 1962)
4 single 3 pdr saluting guns
Radars:
Type 960 : Surveillance
Type 982 : Fighter Control
Type 277 : Fighter direction
Type 983 : Height Finding

Flight deck recognition letter: A (1958-1973)


Albion Time Line :
1947.06 - 1954.05 : launched & completed
1958.01 - 1958.05 : refit
1959.08 - 1959.12 : refit
1960.12 - 1962.08 : conversion to amphibious-assault helicopter carrier
1966.09 - 1967.09 : refit
1969.07 - 1970.03 : refit
1972.10 - 1973.03 : paid off and broken up
1954
1956
898
890
813
815
849/C
Ship Flight
8
12
6
6
4
1
Sea Hawk FGA6
Sea Venom FAW21
Wyvern S4
Avenger AS
Skyraider AEW1
Dragonfly HR5
1956
1957
800/802
809
849/C
Ship Flight
16
12
4
1
Sea Hawk FGA6
Sea Venom FAW21
Skyraider AEW1
Dragonfly HR5
1957
1959
800/802
809
824
849/C
Ship Flight
16
12
6
4
1
Sea Hawk FGA6
Sea Venom FAW21
Gannet AS4
Skyraider AEW1
Dragonfly HR5
1959 804
809
849/C
820
Ship Flight
8
12
4
8
1
Sea Hawk FGA6
Sea Venom FAW21
Skyraider AEW1
Whirlwind HAS
Dragonfly HR5
1959
1960
806
894
849/D
815
Ship Flight
8
12
4
8
1
Sea Hawk FGA6
Sea Venom FAW21
Skyraider AEW1
Whirlwind HAS
Dragonfly HR5
1962
1964
845
846
12
7
Wessex HAS1
Whirlwind HAS7
1965
1972
848
Ship Flight
16
1
Wessex HU5
Wasp HAS1
1972
1973
845
Ship Flight
16
1
Wessex HU5
Wasp HAS1
R08 HMS Bulwark Years Squadron Qty Aircrafts

Displacement: 22,00 tons standard ; 27,800 tons full load
Dimensions: 737.75 oa x 123 x 27.8 feet
Dimensions: 737 oa x 123.5 x 28.25 feet (when helicopter carrier)
Propulsion: 4 Admiralty 3-drum boilers, 2 shafts, 78,000 shp turbines
Speed: 28 knots
Range: 6,000 nmiles at 20 knots ; 4,083 tons fuel oil
Complement: 1596 (including air group)
Aviation Facilities:
Hangar : 329 x 62 x 17.5 ft
5.75° angled deck: 732 x 84 ft
Arrester wires : 6 30,000 lb arrester wires
Catapults : 2 BH5 30,000 lb hydraulic catapults at bow
Elevators : 2 35,000 lb lifts
Elevators : fwd: 54×44ft - aft:  54× 44ft
Aviation fuel : 349,000 gallons (AVCAT & AVGAS/MOGAS)(1962)
Aircraft: up to 42 or 30 helicopters (1962)
Armament:
2 sextuple Bofors 40 mm AA (removed in 1962)
8 twin Bofors 40 mm (4 removed in 1962)
4 single Bofors 40 mm (removed in 1962)
4 single 3 pdr saluting guns
Radars:
Type 960 : Surveillance
Type 982 : Fighter Control
Type 277 : Fighter direction
Type 983 : Height Finding

Flight deck recognition letter: B


Bulwark Time Line :
1948.06 - 1954.11 : launched & completed
1956.12 - 1957.05 : refit
1958.11 - 1960.01 : conversion to amphibious-assault helicopter carrier
1962.12 - 1963.12 : refit
1965.09 - 1966.04 : refit
1968.08 - 1969.04 : major refit
1974.03 - 1975.02 : refit
1976.05 - 1978.03 : reserve carrier
1978.03 - 1979.02 : conversion to ASW carrier
1981.03 - 1981.04 : paid off and scrapped (in 1984)
1955 800/811
751
Ship Flight
16
6
1
Sea Hawk FGA6
Avenger AS
Dragonfly HR5
1956 804/810/897
Ship Flight
24
1
Sea Hawk FGA6
Dragonfly HR5
1957 801/898
891
820
849/D
845
Ship Flight
16
8
6
4
5
1
Sea Hawk FGA6
Sea Venom FAW21
Gannet AS4
Skyraider AEW1
Whirlwind HAS7
Dragonfly HR5
1957
1958
801/898
891
849/D
845
Ship Flight
16
8
4
5
1
Sea Hawk FGA6
Sea Venom FAW21
Skyraider AEW1
Whirlwind HAS7
Dragonfly HR5
1960
1964
848
Ship Flight
13 Whirlwind HAS7
1964
1966
845
Ship Flight
13 Whirlwind HAS7
1966
1970
845
Ship Flight
16
1
Wessex HU5
Wasp HAS1
1970 848
Ship Flight
10
1
Wessex HU5
Wasp HAS1
1970
1972
848
Ship Flight
16
1
Wessex HU5
Wasp HAS1
1972
1976
848
Ship Flight
16
1
Wessex HU5
Wasp HAS1
1979 846
826
9
9
Sea King HC4
Sea King HAS5
1979
1980
846
820/826
9
18
Sea King HC4
Sea King HAS5
1980
1981
846
820/814
6
18
Sea King HC4
Sea King HAS5
R12 HMS Hermes Years Squadron Qty Aircrafts

Displacement: 23,000 tons standard ; 27,800 tons full load
Dimensions: 774.75 oa x 147.9 x 27.8 feet
Propulsion: 4 Admiralty 3-drum boilers, 2 shafts, 76,000 shp turbines
Speed: 28 knots
Range: 5,040 nmiles at 20 knots ; 3,500 tons fuel oil
Complement: 2100 (including air group)
Aviation Facilities:
Hangar : 365 x 62 x 17.5 ft
angled deck: 744.5 x 144.5 ft
Arrester wires : 5 35,000 lb
Catapults : 2 BS4 50,000 lb steam catapults at bow
Elevators : 2 35,000 lb lifts
Elevators : aft:  54× 44ft (25 sec) - port: 54x35ft (30 sec)
Aviation fuel : 332,000 gallons aviation fuel (AVCAT)
Aircraft: 28
Armament:
5 twin Bofors 40 mm
4 single 3 pdr saluting guns
Radars:
Type 984 : Fighter-control
Type 293 : Air/Surface Search
Type 963 : Carrier Approach

Flight deck recognition letter: H


Hermes Time Line :
1953.02 - 1959.11 : launched & completed
1964.03 - 1966.05 : major refit
                              fight deck widened to 160ft stb of island
                              all 40mm guns removed
                              2 GWS22 Sea Cat quad launchers added
                              standard displacement increased to 24,900 tons
1970.07 - 1973.08 : conversion to amphibious-assault helicopter carrier
1975.05 - 1976.12 : conversion to ASW carrier
1977.01 + 1979.12 : trials with Harrier & Sea Harrier respectively
1980.00 - 1981.06 : refit - 12° ski-jump, facilities for Sea Harrier
1982.04 - 1982.07 : Falkland war
1983.12 - 1984.03 : refit
1984.04 - 1984.04 : paid off
1986.04 - 1987.05 : refit, sold to India as R22 Viraat
1960
1962
804
890
849/C
814
Ship Flight
8
12
4
5
1
Scimitar F1
Sea Vixen FAW1
Gannet AEW3
Whirlwind HAS7
Dragonfly HR5
1962
1964
803
892
849/B
814
Ship Flight
8
12
4
5
1
Scimitar F1
Sea Vixen FAW1
Gannet AEW3
Wessex HAS1
Whirlwind HAR5
1966
1967
809
892
849/B
849/B
826
Ship Flight
7
12
4
1
5
1
Buccaneer S2
Sea Vixen FAW2
Gannet AEW3
Gannet COD4
Wessex HAS3
Wessex HAS1
1968
1970
801
893
849/A
849/A
814
Ship Flight
7
12
4
1
5
1
Buccaneer S2
Sea Vixen FAW2
Gannet AEW3
Gannet COD4
Wessex HAS3
Wessex HAS1
1973
1979
845
814
9
9
Wessex HU5
Sea King HAS1
1981 800
826
8
9
Harrier FRS1
Sea Kin HAS5
1982 800
899
826
846
8
8
9
9
Harrier FRS1
Harrier FRS1
Sea Kin HAS5
Sea Kin HAS5
Audacious Class
R05 HMS Eagle Years Squadron Qty Aircrafts

After 1959-1964 refit
Displacement: 43,000 tons standard ; 50,536 tons full load
Dimensions: 813.5 oa x 171 x 34.5 feet
Propulsion: 8 Admiralty 3-drum boilers, 4 shafts, 152,000 shp turbines
Speed: 30.5 knots
Range: 7,000 nmiles at 14 knots ; 3,200 tons fuel oil
Complement: 2750 (including air group)
Aviation Facilities:
Upper hangar : 409 x 67 x 17.5 ft (with 45ft fwd of the fwd lift)
Lower hangar : 172 x 54 x 17.5 ft (originally 364', the aft portion of the lower hangar was converted to various uses during the 1959-64 modernization)
8° angled deck : 800 x 160 ft 8-degree angled flight deck ;
Arrester wires : 4×35,000 lb
Catapults : 2×BS5 50,000 lb steam cat, 1 port bow + 1 waist
Elevators : 2× 40,000 lb lifts (35 second cycle)
Elevators : fwd, 54ft long x 44ft wide - aft  54 x 33 feet
Aviation fuel : 487,480 gallons (AVCAT)
Aircraft: 44
Armament:
8 twin 4.5-inch / 45 Mk 6 DP turrets - only 4 remaining (1964)
8 sextuple Bofors 40 mm AA
2 twin Bofors 40 mm
9 single Bofors 40 mm

6 GWS22 Sea Cat point-defence SAM quad launchers ;
4 single 3 pdr saluting guns
Radars:
Type 984 : Fighter Control
Type 983 : Height finding
Type 965 : Air Search
Type 963 : Carrier Approach
US Mk 37 gunnery directors

Flight deck recognition letter: E (1958-1972)

Time Line :
1954.05 - 1955.02 : Refit - 5.5° angled deck
1955.11 - 1956.04 : repairs
1957.01 - 1957.06 : refit and repairs
1959.05 - 1964.05 : refit with a 8° angled deck
                               forward 4.5' + all 40mm guns removed
                               6 GWS22 Sea Cat quad launchers
1965.05 - 1965.08 : repairs
1966.08 - 1967.04 : refit
1968.10 - 1969.03 : refit (phantomisation)
1970.04 - 1970.09 : repairs
1972.01 - 1972.02 : paid off.

1952
1953
800/803
812/814
827
809
849/A
Ship Flight
16
16
8
8
4
1
Attacker FB
Firefly FR
Firebrand TF4
Sea Hornet NF21
Skyraider AEW1
Dragonfly HR
1953 800/803
825/814
809
849/C
Ship Flight
16
16
8
4
1
Attacker FB2
Firefly FR
Hornet NF21
Skyraider AEW1
Dragonfly HR
1954 800/803
806
809
815
849/A+B
Ship Flight
16
8
8
6
8
1
Attacker FB2
Sea Hawk FGA6
Sea Hornet NF21
Avenger AS
Skyraider AEW1
Dragonfly HR
1955 802/804
813/827
826
849/A
Ship Flight
16
16
6
4
1
Sea Hawk FGA6
Wyvern S4
Gannet AS4
Skyraider AEW1
Dragonfly HR
1956 897/899
892/893
830
812
849/A
Ship Flight
16
14
6
6
4
1
Sea Hawk FGA6
Sea Venom FAW21
Wyvern S4
Gannett AS4
Skyraider AEW1
Dragonfly HR
1957
1959
803/806
894
813
849/A
814
Ship Flight
16
14
6
4
4
1
Sea Hawk FGA6
Sea Venom FAW21
Wyvern S4
Skyraider AEW1
Gannett AS4
Dragonfly HR
1964
1966
800
899
800
849/D
849/D
820
Ship Flight
14
16
4
4
1
5
1
Buccaneer S1
Sea Vixen FAW2
Scimitar F1 (TKR)
Gannet AEW3
Gannet COD4
Wessex HAS1
Whirlwind HAR5
1967
1970
800
899
849/D
849/D
829
Ship Flight
14
16
4
1
5
1
Buccaneer S2
Sea Vixen FAW2
Gannet AEW3
Gannet COD4
Wessex HAS3
Wessex HAS1/SAR
1971 800
899
849/D
849/D
826
Ship Flight
14
16
4
1
5
1
Buccaneer S2
Sea Vixen FAW2
Gannet AEW3
Gannet COD4
Sea King HAS1
Wessex HAS1
R09 HMS Ark Royal Years Squadron Qty Aircrafts

As built and 1964 refit
Displacement: 43,060 tons standard ; 49,950 tons full load
Dimensions: 808.25 oa x 158.4 x 35.6 feet
Propulsion: 8 Admiralty 3-drum boilers, 4 shafts, 152,000 shp turbines
Speed: 30.5 knots
Range: 7,000 nmiles at 14 knots ; 5,500 tons fuel oil
Complement: 2756 (including air group)
Aviation Facilities:
Upper hangar : 409 x 67 x 17.5 ft (with 45ft fwd of the fwd lift)
Lower hangar : 217 x 54 x 17.5 ft (originally 364')
In special refit of 1958/59, new compartments were built in aft 69' of lower hangar end for weapons storage and assembly. Aft lift stopped at upper hangar level; aft lift well used for accommodation. Ark lost a further 78' in the 1966-70 Phantomisation refit for electronics repair shops.
angled deck: 790 x 120 ft
Arrester wires : 6× 35,000 lb
Catapults : 2 BS4 50,000 lb steam bow cat
Elevators : 3× 40,000 lb lifts (35 second cycle)
Elevators : fwd: 54×44ft - aft:  54× 33ft - port:54× 35ft
Aviation fuel : 537,700 gallons (AVCAT & AVGAS)
Aircraft: up to 40
Armament:
8 twin 4.5-inch / 45 Mk 6 DP turrets
5 sextuple Bofors 40 mm AA
2 twin Bofors 40 mm ; 6 single Bofors 40 mm
4 GWS22 Sea Cat point-defence SAM quad launchers
4 single 3 pdr saluting guns
Radars:
Type 982 : Fighter Control
Type 983 : Height finding
Type 965 : Air Search
Type 963 : Carrier Approach
US Mk 37 gunnery directors

Flight deck recognition letter: R (1958-1979)

Time Line :
1956.05 - 1956.11 : refit Portside fwd. 4.5-inch removed
1957.02 - 1957.05 : repairs
1958.07 - 1959.12 : refit, deck-edge lift removed
1961.03 - 1961.11 : repairs
1964.01 - 1964.11 : refit (all 4.5' and 40mm guns removed
                              4 GWS22 Sea Cat quad launchers
1966.10 - 1970.02 : refit (phantomization)
1973.08 - 1974.04 : refit
1976.10 - 1977.05 : refit
1978.12 - 1978.12 : paid off

1955
1956
800/898
891
824
849/B
Ship
16
14
6
4
1
Sea Hawk FGA6
Sea Venom FAW21
Gannet AS4
Skyraider AEW1
Dragonfly HR5
1957 802/804/898
831
815
849/B
Ship Flight
22
6
6
4
1
Sea Hawk FGA6
Wyvern S4
Gannet AS4
Skyraider AEW1
Dragonfly HR5
1957
1958
800
893
849/B
Ship Flight
14
14
4
1
Sea Hawk FGA6
Sea Venom FAW22
Skyraider AEW1
Dragonfly HR5
1960 800
807
892
849/A
820
824
Ship Flight
6
8
8
4
6
8
1
Scimitar F1
Scimitar F1
Sea Vixen FAW1
Gannet AEW3
Whirlwind HAS7
Whirlwind HAS7
Dragonfly HR5
1962
1963
800
890
849/C
815
Ship Flight
12
14
4
8
1
Scimitar F1
Sea Vixen FAW1
Gannet AEW3
Wessex HAS1
Whirlwind HAR5
1965
1966
803
890
849/C
849/C
819
Ship Flight
12
14
4
1
8
1
Scimitar F1
Sea Vixen FAW1
Gannet AEW3
Gannet COD4
Wessex HAS1
Whirlind HAR5
1970
1978
809
892
849/B
849/B
824
Ship Flight
12
14
4
1
7
1
Buccaneer S2
Phantom FG1
Gannet AEW3
Gannet COD4
Sea King HAS1
Wessex HAS1
       
       
Illustrious Class
R38 HMS Victorious Years Squadron Qty Aircrafts

Displacement: 30,530 tons standard, 35,500 tons full load
Dimensions: L=781ft, Beam WL=103'06" , Beam Deck=157ft
Propulsion: 6 boilers, 3 shaft parsons geared turbines 110,000hp
Speed: 30.5 knots
Range: 11,000 nautical miles at 14 knots
Complement: 2400
Aviation Facilities:
Hangar : 458' x 62' x 17.5'
Flight deck: 781.5' x 156.8'
Arrester wires :
Catapults : 2 x BS.4A 145 ft steam catapults
Elevators :
Elevators : fwd: __×__ft - aft:  __× __ft
Aviation fuel :
Aircraft: up to 28 aircrafts (after refit) helicopters incl
Armament:
6 twin 3inch/50 guns
6 single Bofors 40 mm
Radars:
Type 984 : Fighter Control
Type 974 :
Type 293 ; Air/Surface Search

Flight deck recognition letter: V

Time Line :
1937.05 - 1941.05 : Laid down and commissioned
1950.10 - 1957.12 : Major refit
                             angled deck, lengthened to 240m,
1960.03 - 1960.08 : refit
1965.10 - 1966.04 : refit
1968.03 - 1969.07 : paid off and scrapped


All but the last data box regarding CAG is illustrated on this separate R38 Audacious Tentative Time Line 1958-1967, of which the below 1961-1967 illustration is a shortened version
1959.02
1959.08
894 8 SeaVenom
1961.04
1961.05
805 8 SeaVenom
1958.09
1960.02
803 8 Scimitar
1960.01
1960.02
807 8 Scimitar
1958.09
1960.09
1963.08
1967.06
893 8 SeaVixen
1959.10
1959.11
1960.10
1962.02
892 8 SeaVixen
1963.08
1963.09
899 8 SeaVixen
1963.08
1966.06
809 8 Buccaneer
1963.08
1967.06
801 8 Buccaneer
1960.10
1962.02
849/B 4 Gannet.AEW3
1963.08
1967.06
849/A 4 Gannet.AEW3
1958.02
1958.03
701 5 Whilwind.HAS
1958.08
1959.01
824 5 Whilwind.HAS
1960.10
1961.11
825 5 Whilwind.HAS
1961.12
1962.01
815 5 Wessex.HAS
1963.08
1965.07
1966.09
1967.03
814 5 Wessex.HAS
1966
1967
801
893
849-A
849-A
814
8
8
4
1
5
Sea Vixen
Buccaneer
Gannet AEW3
Gannet COD4
Whirlwind HAR5

 

 

Invincible Class
The Invincible class is beyond the scope of AAC.  However, the background data is kept for comparison purposes with the fantasy
Audacity class
R05 HMS Invincible Years Squadron Qty Aircrafts
Displacement: 16,000t std ; 19,500t full (20,000t Ark Royal)
Dimensions: 632 pp, 677.75 oa x 104.5 x 29 feet
Propulsion: 4 RR Olympus TMB3 Gas Turbines, 2 shafts, 94,000 shp
Speed: 28 knots
Range: 5,000 nmiles at 18 knots ; 3,000 tons fuel oil
Complement: 1100 (including air group) (R05 & R06), 1318 (R07)
Aviation Facilities:
Ski-jum : 7° (R05 & R06) or 12° (R07)
Hangar : 500 x 40 to 74 x 20 ft
Flight deck : 550 x 65 ft axial
Elevators : 2× 35,000 lb lifts - 54.75ft × 31.75ft
Aviation fuel :  250,000 gallons (AVCAT)
Aircraft: up to 20 (22 Ark Royal)
Armament:
1 GWS30 Sea Dart SAM twin launcher, 36 missile magazine
3 20 mm Vulcan Phalanx Mk 15 CIWS (Ark Royal only)
2 20 mm Vulcan Phalanx Mk 15 CIWS (Illustrious only)
2 20 mm GAM-B01 AA (Ark Royal only)
Radars:
Type 1022 : Air Search
Type 992R : Surface Search
Type 1006 : Navigation (×2)
Type 0909 : Fire Control (×2)
 
After first refit and modernisation (as above except) :
Displacement: 16,500 tons standard ; 20,600 tons full load
Complement: 1400 (including air group)
Aviation Facilities:
Ski-Jump : 12°
Hangar : 500 x 40 to 74 x 20 ft
Flight deck : 600 x 65 ft
Aircraft: up to 26
Armament:
1 GWS30 Sea Dart SAM twin launcher, 36 missile magazine
3 30 mm Goalkeeper CIWS
2 20 mm GAM-B01 AA

Flight deck recognition letter: N
Invincible Time Line :
1977.05 - 1980.07 : launched & completed
1982.04 - 1982.07 : Falkland war
1982.09 - 1983.02 : refit (Phalanx and GAM-B01 guns added
1986.04 - 1989.05 : modernisation
1980
1985
801
820
8
9
Sea Harrier FRS1
Sea King HAS5
1989
1990
800
814
849/A
9
9
3
Sea Harrier FRS1
Sea King HAS5
Sea King AEW2
1990
1995
800
814
849/A
9
9
3
Sea Harrier FRS1
Sea King HAS5
Sea King AEW2
1995
---
800
814
849/A
9
9
3
Sea Harrier FRS1
Sea King HAS5
Sea King AEW2
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
R06 HMS Illustrious Years Squadron Qty Aircrafts
Illustrious : Built by Swan Hunter, Completed 1982.06.20.
Flight deck recognition letter: L
 
1984 : Sea Harriers from 899 sqn. and Sea King from 810 sqn.
1987 : repairs
1991 : modernisation
1999 :  Sea Dart missile system removed
1982 809
814
824
8
9
3
Sea Harrier FRS1
Sea King HAS5
Sea King AEW2
1983
1987
800
820
8
9
Sea Harrier FRS1
Sea King HAS5
1987
1989
800
814
849/A
8
9
3
Sea Harrier FRS1
Sea King HAS5
Sea King AEW2
1994
---
801
820
849/B
9
9
3
Sea Harrier FA2
Sea King HAS6
Sea King AEW2
R07 HMS Ark Royal Years Squadron Qty Aircrafts
Ark Royal : Built by Swan Hunter, Completed 1985.11.01
Flight deck recognition letter: R
 
1985
1986
801
820
9
9
Sea Harrier FRS1
Sea King HAS5
1986
1991
801
820
849/B
9
9
3
Sea Harrier FRS1
Sea King HAS5
Sea King AEW2
1991
1994
801
820
849/B
8
9
3
Sea Harrier FRS1
Sea King HAS5
Sea King AEW2
 

___________