HMS Prince of Wales continues sea trials in the North Sea
Britain’s largest warship HMS Prince of Wales continued sea trials after a pit stop in Scotland ahead of tests in more tempestuous seas.
The HMS Prince of Wales has been undergoing sea trials in the North Sea after being assembled in Rosyth. The ship returned to Scotland for a brief stop ahead of trials in more extreme environments.
The 65,000-tonne aircraft carrier has been faced with Sea State 6 so far, meaning waves up to 20ft. The ship returned to Scotland briefly to stock up on supplies after hitting a number of targets.
Alex Derry, Able Seaman, said: “Not only I was the first sailor on HMS Prince of Wales to go under the Forth Bridge during our departure from Rosyth, but I also had the great honour to be the first gunnery rating to take part in a live machine-gun firing.”
“Being able to take part in both historic events fills me with a great sense of achievement and makes me proud to be part of such a momentous time in the ship’s life.”
During the trials so far the ship has achieved:
• The first helicopter landing;
• The first test of engines at full power;
• The first test of long-range radar;
• The first port visit to take on supplies;
• The first launch of a weather balloon by the meteorological team;
• 200 more compartments of the 3,000 aboard have been completed by contractors, leaving just 450 to finish off;
• The first test of the forward aircraft lift moving a 105-tonne load between the hangar and flight decks;
• The first test of the ‘citadel’ – the supposedly-impregnable self-contained heart of the ship where sailors are protected from the effects of chemical, nuclear and biological warfare;
• And the first test of small-calibre guns.
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