Aircraft Carriers

Ministry of Defence written question – answered on 23rd November 2020.

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Photo of Douglas Chapman Douglas Chapman Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Small Business, Enterprise and Innovation)

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what (a) assessment he has made and (b) representations he has received on the potential constraints that would be placed on Carrier Strike in the event that the delivery of the full contingent of F-35B aircraft is delayed until 2025.

Photo of Jeremy Quin Jeremy Quin The Minister of State, Ministry of Defence

The current agreed F35-B Lightning procurement profile will see the UK reach 48 aircraft in Quarter four 2025. This delivery schedule has been developed to support the F35-B Lightning force generation build profile and the Carrier Enabled Power Projection (CEPP) milestone requirements. In December 2023, when Full Operational Capability (FOC) Carrier Strike is scheduled to be declared, the UK F35-B Lightning Force will have a total of 37 F35-B Lightning aircraft which will support two front line squadrons and the Operational Conversion Unit. The full complement, of 48 aircraft, will be available when the CEPP FOC milestone is reached in 2026. These figures include the three 17 Squadron UK F35-B Lightning aircraft base at Edwards Air Force Base in California, to conduct Test and Evaluation.

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