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HMS Prince of Wales left for deployment in early September with a goal to further develop how the Royal Navy utilizes Carrier Strike Groups. After a visit to Mayport, Florida, the warship will be pushing the limits of their carrier, operating drones, strike fighters, tilt-rotors and helicopters from both the U.S. Navy and the U.S. Marine Corps.
Over the next few months the warship will specifically be pushing the boundaries of carrier landings for the U.K.’s fifth-generation jets, the F-35 Lightning stealth fighter.
Allowing the jets to land on the carrier faster and while carrying heavier loads (i.e. more fuel and weapons) will allow HMS Prince of Wales to launch more strike missions, faster.
The carrier will also practice launching and landing the F-35 in heavy sea states to demonstrate their ability to operate in harsh environments.
These sea states are why the HMS Prince of Wales is operating off the East Coast, to capitalize on the heavy seas that come with hurricane season in the United States.
Part of HMS Prince of Wales’ deployment will include multiple port calls to Naval Station Norfolk this fall, where they will be hosted by Carrier Strike Group-10 and the Nimitiz-class aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush (CVN 77).
Sailors aboard HMS Prince of Wales will be able to tour Naval Station Norfolk and visit surrounding areas in the coming months.