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Navy Planes

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309502.  Wed Apr 02, 2008 7:25 pm Reply with quote

The question isn't right yet - the trap's a bit obvious, I think - but:

In the Fleet Air Arm, what do they call the right-hand side of their 'planes?

F: Starboard

A: the Right

This was posted by PDR in the outer forums:
My day-job concerns the Harrier aircraft, which comes in two basic flavours for the UK armed forces. The "harrier" is used by the RAF and the "Sea Harrier" is used by the Royal Navy (at least it was, before it was retired from service a couple of years ago). The two aircraft are very different animals and so have completely separate suites of manuals. In one suite all locations are referenced using port & starboard, so they'd talk about the port wing, the starboard cannon pod etc. In the other suite all references are to left & right, and the use of port & starboard is explicitly prohibited in these manuals. You'd expect the Navy ones to be the ones that used Port & Starboard, but you'd be wrong... The reason is that, when on ship, Port & Starboard only ever refer to the ship-axis, so if a Sea Harrier was on the deck facing aft its Port wing would be the right-hand one. Similarly if a tug-driver was towing a bomb trolley towards the aft end of the carrier and he was commended to move over to Starboard to clear the deck he would turn left. So references to port and starboard in the manuals were eliminated to avoid confusion.

I thought it was interesting, anyway.

309586.  Thu Apr 03, 2008 4:28 am Reply with quote

I really like that, mainly because the explanation is so sensible, when you're expecting it to be something daft and hidebound. It's one of those that makes you go "Well, yes, of course ..."

309795.  Thu Apr 03, 2008 7:27 am Reply with quote

Will everyone know that the Fleet Air Arm is part of the Navy?

809245.  Sun Apr 24, 2011 8:36 pm Reply with quote

Do they still use the Harriers or have they switched them out for something more... up to date and do they still have the sea kings (I think they're called)

809372.  Mon Apr 25, 2011 9:16 am Reply with quote

The RAF in fact retired its Harriers in March of this year, while the Royal Navy retired them in 2006. The Indian Navy continues to use them.

The British-made Sea King continues to be used by both the RAF and the Royal Navy, and the armed forces of a dozen other countries besides. Even more countries continue to use the American Sikorsky Sea King upon which the British version was largely based.

809424.  Mon Apr 25, 2011 11:26 am Reply with quote

suze wrote:
The RAF in fact retired its Harriers in March of this year, while the Royal Navy retired them in 2006. The Indian Navy continues to use them.

Actually the RAF and RN (Fleet Air Arm, more recently known as "Naval Strike Wing") both operated Harrier GR7, 7A, 9 and 9A aircraft as a combined unit known as "Joint Force Harrier". The navy's Sea Harriers were withdrawn in 2006 to release funding for the Harrier GR9 upgrade programme (the Sea Harrier is primarily and air-defence platform, where the GR9 is a dedicated close-air-support [ground attack] platform). JFH was stood down in the 2010 defence review, with the last operational flying taking place on December 15th 2010 (the Release To Service being withdrawn at 23:59 on that day).

Harriers and Sea Harriers are still in operational service with the US Marine Corps, the Indian Navy, Spain, Italy, Thailan and a few other odds & sods. One former development Sea Harrier has found its way into private hands, and has been restored to flying condition by a former USMC pilot in the USA.


809736.  Tue Apr 26, 2011 11:21 am Reply with quote

To amplify the above - as I type this I note that the USS Kearsarge & ITS Giuseppe Garibaldi are both off the North African coast in "Banghazi Bay" both with a full compliment of Harriers on board, both conducting operations.

So Harrier isn't dead yet...



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