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Peter Cross

Nothing new in Mod incompetence they’ve had years of practice to reach unbelievable skills of c…ups.
Shame that we have no engine manufacturing to match Wartsila Diesel.

Dave S

You don’t half spout simplistic claptrap… Grow up

Ken Goatley

Is the Wartsila a Sulzer design engine?

Steven Hannath

By the time these type 45’s are fixed and properly seaworthy, how much life will they have left. What an embarrassment for the MOD, but reflecting on the overstretched and ever shrinking RN. As one who served during the 70’s and 80’s during the age of steam, I say bring it back!

Dave S

You are so very very funny… than heavens people don’t have to act on your opinions


Says you , it’s a comments section if some ones to comment what’s it got to do with you .you dont have to act on your opinion 😜


They are perfectly seaworthy if we want to use them in the Atlantic, North sea or other places like that… It’s really only in exceptionally hot water like the Med, Red Sea, Gulf of Aden and a few places around the Caribbean (unfortunately where they have frequently been deployed recently, or else transiting through).

Steam plants are vastly more expensive than diesels and gas turbines to buy, run and maintain. They also use intercoolers which could have been poorly designed, in which case it would be FAR more work to replace that kind of powerplant!


Any idea if this work will be part of a general refit or will ships get this work as a stand-alone job?


It’s stand alone work – upkeeps etc will continue to be done in Portsmouth as usual


“The principles are sound but the selection by government, against the advice of the builder BAE Systems, of an unproven Gas Turbine design has left a painful legacy. ” – That statement is not factually accurate! BAE Systems did not advise against using the WR-21. BAE Systems offered two solutions to provide the Type 45 with propulsion. Option 1 WR21 with an ICR system and small diesels for harbour services. Option 2 GE LM2500 with diesels for cruise. BAE Systems was careful not to favour either solution and stated both were capable of offering the performance, fuel efficiency and most importantly range required for the type. Type 45 is required to be able to get from Ascension to the Falklands without refueling. They did state using WR-21 with ICR as more risky but they never went as far as advising against using the solution. People conveniently forget this was a political decision with the then Defence Secretary Geoff Hoon having the Rolls Royce factory not for from his constituency. I remember much patting on the back from defence commentators in the UK when it was decided to choose the ‘British’ choice for Type 45.


No, you are the one that is factually incorrect. Bae advised against the WR21 solution on the grounds that it was too risky. Hoon chose to overrule that advice. This was explained in Parliament and to the Defence committee.


No you and the committee are wrong, this is well discussed and reported elsewhere. What I laid out is what happened.


Was the MT-30 ever considered for the type 45?

John Ritenour

The Cranky Yankee here: I see the RN Builders and Contractors have been taking lessons from those in the US. Seriously – new technologies should be thoroughly tested and trialed before adoption. We in the US Navy had to learn the same lesson(s). As an example: Our newest Carrier the Gerald R Ford is equipped with the EMALS (Electro Magnetic Aircraft Launching System). After a tremendous effort – the ship just recently succeeded in conducting a regular cat shot. Had the get well effort not been successful – repiping and rework of the Ship would have cost just North of 1.5 Billion Dollars (approx £1.1 Billion).


Its usually the other way round, the US learning from British experience 😉 but yeah, the lesson has definitely been learnt. Almost every system for the Type 26 is being fitted to the old T23s first so that their capabilities and limits are well known.

To be fair, the RN has a history of innovation working out well for them: for instance, the Queen Elizabeth class battleships, with their oil fuel and untested 15″ guns, ended up being the most powerful warships in the world at launch, provided invaluable service through both world wars. The steam catapult, angled flight deck, and optical landing system were all British innovations as well. Of course, this doesn’t always work out, for instance battlecruisers in general (although the concept was sound), or aluminium superstructures to save weight (the Falklands proved that to be a false economy), but overall, the RN has gained a lot from pioneering new technologies.


Battlecrusier where a sound idea and when used for what they where intended for ie: battle of the Falklands they proved there worth.
They where never meant to stand in line of battle like jutland.
They where designed to over power weaker ships and runaway from stronger ones.
The QE class where meant to be a fast battleship they where 2 knots slower than designed intend to form fast battlegroup to support the battle cruisers.


I did say the concept of battlecruisers was sound, the problem was that they were far too expensive and powerful to leave behind when the battlefleet sailed out. Unfortunately, they were one trick ponies, which is why the idea died off in favour of fast battleships.

Yes, the QE class were technically slower than their design spec, but for the time it was an incredibly demanding spec, and in any case the final result was still faster and more powerful than every other battleship at the time.

Jonathan Chadworth

Pitiful and typical


No, I would never describe it in this way. It is a positive step forward and we should recognise it in this way.

Ken Pearson

A bit confused. The caption with the picture says ‘using access paths designed into the ship without cutting the hull open’ and the text has ‘The cutting open of the hulls to remove the old generator sets and inserting the new plant will be done at Cammell Laird’s shipyard’. Are the replacement generators so much larger than the existing ones and so the access paths designed into the ship are not big enough?


Possibly the new higher output sets are to big. Plus the are adding a third diesel gen set.


The T45s were designed so that the original generators could be removed and replaced during refits (like the one shown in the photo from 2015). However, that only works if you’re only replacing the old ones with the same model. To fit three bigger generators into the ship is going to need some pretty heavy modification to the internal layout, and there’s just no way you could design that sort of working space into a warship


As far as I can tell the 2 original diesel engines (Wärtsilä 20V200) are 4.2×1.7×2.5m whereas the new MTU 20V 4000s (same as are going into the Type 26) are 3.9×1.5×2.4m so actually slightly smaller…There are of course 3 of them, not 2, so my guess is much of the open heart surgery is thanks to having to make space for the extra engine, and getting that one into place as there is likely no pre-built access path to the new location.


I doubt there’ll be a better opportunity to fit the Mk41s/A70s, if we’re ever going to do it.

Rick O'Shea

I agree, if they are ever to receive the Mk41 upgrade now is the time


It sounds like this job is a pure power plant change and not part of the regular refit cycle.


Better opportunity? No, this would definitely be it. Better time? Unless the budget gets a big uptick (and we need that just to keep what we already have) or LM want’s to do us a discount for ordering more Mk41s at the same time, fitting strike VLS to the T45s just isn’t a priority compared to getting the last Astute, more T31s, and retaining the Albions.

Geoffrey Simon Hicking

This may be a painful lesson, but at least we have the capability to correct this error. It could have been worse… couldn’t it?


Yes. Have you heard of the Mary Rose…


At least you lot didn’t buy the LCS. MOD made a mistake but it was correctable. We also bought the DDG 1000, right now it also is almost a complete waste. I’ll take MOD over DOD anytime. I’m an American by the way.


Yet again another kick In the balls to Babcock


Thing is with tried and tested is you have to do the trying and testing, which implies a certain amount of failure. I think I read that RR said that the turbines worked to specification which means somewhere the sums were wrong or use cases models were incomplete , I expect someone had done the math and knew the issues and rather than saying it we ended up with the “higher risk” verbiage, what is what bambozald Hoon.


Nothing much happening is there? T45’s come and go from Portsmouth. Some even get minor refits. The amazing thing to me is that everything is moving at a snail’s pace. T26 is the same story. Will the Treasury never learn that slow is expensive?

Darby Allen ex RN 42 1/2 years served

Darby Allen. I am not an engineer but see large cruise liners many many go about the seas with little problem in propulsion/power/electrics with little time in port or refit, can we not learn a little from them. We are not talking about weapons just power needed for the ship and kit that requires it.

Ronald Grinter

This Electrical propulsion system should be dumped with the MOD group who insisted on it, they have made the Royal Navy a laughing stock.

Col. Jaquirer



They could put sails on it……just a thought.

R Watt

Can anyone explain how six vessels built over a long period of time can all have the same built-in flaw. One would have thought that having completed the first one or two the problem would have been identified and corrected for the remaining vessels.

Much like the aircraft carriers, have these ships got any defence against the new breed of hypersonic missiles? It seems to me we are spending a huge amounts of money building wonderful targets in the event of a real war. Submarines would seem a much better investment.