Cavour in Dubrovnik

Trivia: on 23/11/14, an amphibious assault ship Cavour visited Dubrovnik. So I went and took a few photos.

Cavour

badge

Bow view; a PD gun is visible

A look at the command bridge section.

Command bridge up close

Command bridge rear

Stern view

Stern view – PD gun

Stern PD gun detail

Flight deck light

A jump ramp

Drawing with warnings

hangar deck

Fuel tanks

Hangar deck Harrier

Harriers

Harrier side

False canopy

False canopy and FLIR

tail art

A trio of Harriers

Few more can be found here:

http://www.pticica.com/oznake/cavour

Advertisements


Categories: news

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

23 replies

  1. Note: when I asked a maintenance technician, he told me that cockpit visibility from Harrier is good. This definetly seems to be true, even if rearward visibility seems to be lacking.

  2. Thank you for the pictures. I liked the hangar and think the deck is well though. For having a sky ramp it is a really nice looking ship.

    The F-35 should be able to take off in that ramp and that will help. I believe that it must land vertically.

    Is that a stern hatch in the back? If it is did you get a chance to look at it close and see if it had an over head crane or other method of bringing small vessels to the water?

    And I liked the two guns. The Oto Melara in the front is very good. Did you noticed how they handle the magazine?

    The Italians know how to build them.

    Great pictures.

    • “Is that a stern hatch in the back? If it is did you get a chance to look at it close and see if it had an over head crane or other method of bringing small vessels to the water?”

      Yes, it is a stern hatch, but that part of the ship wasn’t open for visitors.

      “Did you noticed how they handle the magazine?”

      No, I didn’t have the opportunity.

      “Great pictures.”

      Thanks.

      • “And I liked the two guns. The Oto Melara in the front is very good. Did you noticed how they handle the magazine? ”

        Those are the Oto Melara 76mm guns I’ve been talking about. Nice. Still very odd placement for CIWS weapons.

        • Hi Andrei. If you are talking about the front one is not that odd placement. It allows them to depress the gun and hit targets that might be closer to the ship as well as rotate maybe 130 degree and hit targets of the sides. This would be very important in the ship’s main area of patrol where there are so many small crafts.

          But it is a last last ditch defense weapon of sorts I do not think that it provides enormous protection since you need to turn the ship to point the gun in another direction which would take time and require it to be in open waters and given the small space underneath the gun I think it has a small magazine too. It can also be use to provide cover for search and boarding if a helicopter is not available.

  3. It’s interesting because that’s about the real life size of what your aircraft carrier proposal would be – about 30,000 tons maximum.

    Sadly the Cavour is slated to replace the Harriers with the F-35B variant rather than anything like the FLX or ALX.

  4. There’s one more thing worth noting.

    From your observations, do you think that the aircraft carrier would have been better (Ex: more operations sustained) were it 3.5x as big (ex: ~105,000 tons, which is about the displacement of a Nimitz class carrier)? For that to happen, it would need say, 3.5x as many sorties per ship or some other benefit. I just don’t see that happening. The only real benefit I can see (and it’s of questionable value) is that a larger carrier could sustain larger aircraft. That might be useful as a transporter, but as far as combat aircraft, probably not of much value.

    In that regard, the Nimitz is a totally poor value for the capability.

    • You already know my opinion on it… only problem I can see with Cavour is that it can only launch STOVL aircraft, but then it is not an actual aircraft carrier.

      • It is a very nice ship. It is working in the Mediterranean and it is sized for that. You can’t use something too big or the number of anchorages would be severely limited. A ship like this one has the right size and you have to give credit to the Italians for making a nice looking vessel that some one else would have made into an eye sore.

  5. I probably should have noticed this sooner but I did now. Those Harriers that the Italians are flying have a different nose than the British and I just made a quick Google and came up with this…

    http://www.airforce-technology.com/projects/harrier/

    If you notice the British Harrier’s nose looks like the tip of a pencil and these are a little bigger and have a little hump on top. So these are newer air crafts.

    • More powerful radar, probably. Original Harriers didn’t even have one.

    • Nope. They are actually AV-8 Harrier II’s, made in the earllt 90s so about 20 years old, and they have a bigger nose because they are fitted with radar. In that regard they are similar with British Sea Harriers that were fitted with radar post-Falklands war so they can act in fleet defense role. Radar fitted Sea Harriers were actually build in cooperation with the American AV-8 so they entered service about the same time. Harrier GR. 7 and GR. 9 were made to Royal Air Force specifications as a pure ground attack aircraft and thus were not fitted with radar, thus the pencil nose, and they are actually newer then the AV-8 Harrier II’s and Sea Harriers, build or upgraded in the late 90s and early 00s, thus the British retired their Sea Harriers and they operate RAF Harrier GR. 7 and 9 from the decks of their carriers.

  6. “British retired their Sea Harriers and they operate RAF Harrier GR. 7 and 9 from the decks of their carriers.” – I find this even more intriguing since Naval aircrafts are built to different specs than air force ones. The term they use is ‘navalized” and involves using corrosion and salt water resistant materials, seals, etc.

    For fleet defense the radar would be a pretty important tool and it is also interesting that given the experience in the Falklands where lack of air borne radar was so devastating they opted at a latter date for no radar. The British are interesting.

    • Lack of air borne AWACS was problematic, as well as a lack of air borne decoys for radar guided missiles. Harriers performed excellently even without radar.

      • “Falklands where lack of air borne radar was so devastating they opted at a latter date for no radar.”

        What are you talking about. With 24 kills to 0 the Sea Harriers record in the Falklands was anything but disappointing . You are probably thing of the sunk ships but Radar Equipped Harriers would not have helped. Up until the appearance of AESA radars, the radars carried by fighters were useless for surveillance, and early warning. They were used to target contacts that had already been detected by either AWACS or ground based long range radars and to which the fighters were vectored. Considering that in the early 80 a detection range of 30 km was considered good for a fighter radar, and that they could barely track one of two targets and, radar equipped Harrier would have not made a difference, not when the range of the Exocet was in excess of 80 km.
        Like Picard said what really mattered was the lack of AWACS and that was the first measure the British took by developing an AWACS helicopter. In fact the Radar equipped Sea Harrier would not have existed without the Americans financing the Harrier II, the British piggybacked their radar equipped Sea Harrier to the American order.

        ” I find this even more intriguing since Naval aircrafts are built to different specs than air force ones. The term they use is ‘navalized” and involves using corrosion and salt water resistant materials, seals, etc.”

        It was more of an economic decision and an attempt to twist Parliament hand in financing the acquisition of F-35B. The military justified that the Sea Harriers were nearing the end of their flight hours and life extension would not be economical seeing as their carriers were about to be retired to be replaced by the Queen Elisabeth class. So they retired them and all carriers but the newest Invincible which was reclassified as LPH to create the pressure for the need of carriers and their associated F-35s. This by the way ties well to Picards newest article:”CDI: The Stench of Elitism in the Defense Budget”. in the interim, the RAF Harriers can operate from the Invincible class but are not stationed there, for reasons you have already cited.

        • Andrei, I understand that the aircraft’s radars can scan for targets. Surely that would be an improvement over no radar or do you think it would not matter.

          What killed the Argentinians was their aircraft’s lack of range and inability to take fuel on the air (only the A4 could do that and that is why it was the most effective of the aircrafts). These limitations forced the Argentinians to follow direct and predictable flight paths and allowed the Harriers to lay ambushes over and over again.

          Once they arrived the lack of time over the battlefield had the perverse effect of forcing the Argentinians to seek dog-fights on unfavorable terms instead of waiting… if you check the dog fights occurred at lower speeds and elevations than optimal for the Argentinian aircrafts. This was a major contributor to the decision of switching to mostly attack instead of trying to dog fight.

      • They had good pilots, better than the Argentinians.

        The other issue was that the explosives that the Argentinians had was often defective.

      • “They had good pilots, better than the Argentinians.

        The other issue was that the explosives that the Argentinians had was often defective.”

        False. They had better trained pilots. Argentina back then had some of the best pilots in the world, but RN pilots spent the better part of a month in the gulf of Byscaine flying at least 3 training sorties a day against French Mirage’s. They knew what the Argentinian Mirage’s could do better then the Argentinians and that is why they knew how and when to engage them. Maybe that’s way most effective aircraft against the RN was the A-4 against which the Harrier pilots didn’t train.

  7. “The other issue was that the explosives that the Argentinians had was often defective.” – I think you misspoke. What you meant is that the bombs where released from such low altitude that they did not have time to arm themselves. They where old fashion iron bombs. There was a huge issue with the press since they publicized the problems and allowed the Argentinians to deal with it.

  8. “Andrei, I understand that the aircraft’s radars can scan for targets. Surely that would be an improvement over no radar or do you think it would not matter.”

    Not in the late 70s and early 80s. This was the era before AESA or even PESA arrays, when one man fighter radars had at best a search range of 30 kms. Think about it the F-14 which was built around it’s radar and was a new fighter back there could detect a target at about 100 kilometers and it was the biggest fighter operated by the US Navy. A radar on the Harrier would not have helped. There were barely a squadron worth of Harriers, they would have to be kept airborne all the time flying in ones or twos to cover a significant area, and even then they would have offered only about a 3 minute warning for incoming A-4 and probably less then a minute for Exocents which would not have helped. The solution would have been either a picket ship, the way the British did it (and lost two Air Defense destroyers) or an AWACS which they didn’t have at the time.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: