All very good, but the downside is we have gone from operating a fleet of 40+ Sea Kings to just 25 Merlins, which means we have lost a sqn (848NAS, the HQ/OCU). I'd like to see a batch of 15 new build HC4s ordered in the next few years, even if just as attrition replacements as these cabs will have to last a very long time...View attachment 37329 View attachment 37330 I also want to see the 8 HM1 airframes held in storage given the full HM2 upgrade so we have enough for both ASW and AEW instead of the undersized fleet of 30 airframes that will have to be shared between the two roles.
Hummm and yes a solution i have 12 HM1 44 build 2 lost 30 HM2 in service12 stored
They are very young and well stored i have see the birds.
But Merlin carry more troops up to 38 passengers saying 30 -35 much more than old Sea King max 20, so 21 Merlins can transport or almost a RM Cdo, 700 pers.
And RAF have 60 big CH-47s HC3-4 after HC-5 and new HC-6 can host 44 passengers ( + 23 Puma modernized ) ur lucky we don't have it in France surely a weakness imposible have all also !
ASW helos fleet also have decrease but even with 10 AEW Merlins remains 20 + 24 Wildcat
for 19 DDG/FFGs considering max 14- 15 deployed + CV with about 10 the number is sufficient.
We have only planned 27 NH-90 with only 14 ASW kits for planned 15 DDG/FFGs i hope 2 - 3 in more but remains now Lynx for Georges Leygues but after...
So the transport capacity is equal or almost but 4 years with only 7 Merlin iHC3 navalized capable to be deployed on ships !
Actualy i have 14 HC3/ iHC3 in the 2 Sqns but the 7 HC3 surely only used for training and only able do land operations.