R07 HMS Ark Royal

UK Royal Navy




1985 to 2011    


R07 HMS Ark Royal

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Flight Deck: R
Call Sign: GCDG
See Also: CV Audacious class R09


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1978-dec-14Laid downSwan Hunter as HMS Indomitable, Yard No. 109
1981-jun-2Launchedas HMS Ark Royal
1984-oct-19Trialsleft Tyne for 1st time for manufacturer trials
1985-jul-1Homeportarrived at HMNB Portsmouth
1985-nov-1Commissioned
1986-aprAircraftembarked Sea King HAS.5 of 820 NAS, until 5 Nov.
1986-jun-17Aircraftembarked Sea King AEW.2 of 849 NAS B Flight.
1986-nov-5Aircraftembarked Sea King HC.4 of 845 NAS.
1987-jan-12Deploymentdeparted HMNB Portsmouth for 3 month western N Atlantic deployment, returned 9 Apr.
1988-mar-18Port VisitNLRotterdam Harbour Wilhelminakade 18-22mar88 port visit embarked 801Sqn with 8 Sea Harrier.
820Sqn. and 849Sqn. embarked with Sea King XV649 : XV654 : XV672 : XV697 : XV700 : ZD631
1988-jun-13Deploymentsailed from HMNB Portsmouth for Far East, as flagship of the Outback 88 deployment. Arrived Singapore on 23 Jul and after visiting Australia, returned to Portsmouth on 15 Dec.
1988-sep-27Port VisitAUHMAS Kuttabul Fleet Review: Australia Bi-centennial Naval Salute to Sydney Harbour for Australian Bi-centennial Fleet Review
1990-apr-18DeploymentTask Group 318.1 sailed as flagship of TG 318.1 for western North Atlantic deployment, with HMS Glasgow, HMS Brave and HMS Cumberland, supported by RFA Fort Grange and RFA Olna. The Ark returned to HMNB Portsmouth on 5 Jul.
1990-nov-7Trialsfirst use of Sea Harrier FA.2 on Invincible class ship, for 10 days of operating trials
1991-jan-10DeploymentTask Group 323.2 Departed HMNB Portsmouth (in company with HMS Charybdis and HMS Sheffield) and embarked 820 Squadron Sea Kings before deploying with TG 323.2 to the eastern Mediterranean for long range surveillance of the Suez Canal and defence of western flank of coalition forces during the Gulf War. Worked with USS Philippine Sea, USS Spruance and USS Virginia in Mediterranean. Returned to Portsmouth in Apr.
1991-sep-10Deploymentdeparted HMNB Portsmouth for western N Atlantic deployment, including working up Sea King HAS.6 of 820 NAS at the AUTEC Ranges, off Bermuda. Returned to Portsmouth on 18 Nov.
1993-jan-14DeploymentHRDalmatian coast UNPROFOR departed HMNB Portsmouth for Adriatic deployment to assist UNPROFOR, with RFA Argus as aviation support. She was relieved by HMS Invincible in Aug 1993. Returned to HMNB Portsmouth 3 Aug 1993.
1993-junDeploymentcross-deck operations with Giuseppe Garibaldi in the Adriatic in late Jun.
1994-jan-28DeploymentHRDalmatian coast Task Group 612.02 UNPROFOR departed HMNB Portsmouth and relieved HMS Invincible at Gibraltar on 4 Feb, assisting UNPROFOR in the Adriatic. Relieved by HMS Invincible and returned to Portsmouth on 2 Sep.
1994-mar-31Port VisitGRPiraeus short mid-deployment maintenance visit to Piraeus until 11 Apr
1994-octHMD Rosyth into reserve at HMNB Portsmouth on 6 months notice to re-activate, until May 1999, when she was towed to Rosyth for refit.
1999-junRefitMerlin upgrade refit extensive refit at Rosyth until Mar 2001, including facilities to Operate Merlin and Sea King ASaC.7 and rejoined fleet in summer 2001
2001-julTrialspost refit shake down and work up
2003-jan-11Deployment Operation Telic to support combat operations in Iraq, completing 17 May 2003
2003-mar-22Deploymentnorthern Persian Gulf Accident Operation Telic while far north in the Persian Gulf supporting the assault on the Al-Faw peninsula, 2 embarked Sea King ASaC.7 from 849 NAS, Red Rat 34 and Red Rat 35 collided with fatal result 5nm from the ship. Recoveries were assisted by divers from USNS Catawba.
2004-mar-17entered a period of extended readiness
2004-octRefitrefit at Babcock in Rosyth to add a third mast, upgrade aviation facilities and improve communications, until 29 Sep 2006, rejoining the fleet in Dec 2006
2008-feb-8Port VisitNorth Shields Northumbrian Quay visited North Shields on Tyneside
2010-aprAircraft Exercise Auriga 2010 Embarked both 815 Squadron 212 Flight Lynx HAS.3ICE, on loan from HMS Endurance until Aug 2010.
2010-jun-28Port VisitCABedford Basin Fleet Review: 100th anniversary of Canadian Navy visited Halifax for MARLANT Fleet Review
2010-octAircrafthosted 656 Squadron (AAC) Apaches for maritime operations trials for c. 3 weeks.
2010-nov-17Port Visit5 day visit to North Shields, departing 22 Nov
2010-nov-24AircraftFlew off her last Sea King and 4 Harriers (2 from 800NAS and 2 from RAF 1 Squadron).
2010-dec-3She returned to Portsmouth that day from a 5 day visit to Hamburg.
2011-mar-11DecommissionedArk Royal was decommissioned at HMNB Portsmouth, 3 years early following defence cuts announced in the SDSR spending review of Oct 2010.
2013-may-20Fate: scrappedTRAliaga Shipbreakers departed Portsmouth under tow for scrapping in Turkey. Passed Malta on 5 Jun 2013.

Specifications    

    from Invincible class
725crew
16950light (tn)
20750full load (tn)
210length (m)
36beam (m)
8.80draught (m)
7000range (nm)
28max speed (knots)
4Naval Engine gas turbine - Rolls Royce Olympus
2Naval Engine propulsion system: COGAG
2Naval Gun Oerlikon 20mm Mk.7 cannon
2Naval Gun single 20 mm
3Close-In Weapon System CIWS Phalanx 20 mm
8Chaff and decoys Seagnat
1Naval Radar air search radar Type 1022
2Naval Radar navigation radar Type 1006
1Naval Radar surface and low level air search radar Type 996
1Sonar hull mounted sonar Type 2016

Aircraft    

    Typical Max
UK Royal Navy Westland sea king 012
UK Royal Navy AW eh.101 012

The Max option implies only aircraft of this model onboard    

Builder    

UK Swan Hunter, Wallsend


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