Engineering/Design for Commercial Shipbuilding

RN Submarine

Hythe Marine Services. No ordinary day at work.

Ever wondered what it’s like to build a submarine? What about a Type 45 destroyer, superyacht or aircraft carrier? These may seem like radical projects to most of us, but for Hythe Marine Services (HMS) Structural Engineers and shipbuilding Designers, it’s a lifetime of craft, and ultimately, another day at work.

Structural Engineers are the creative brains behind many of our most beloved vessels. Often seen as a sub-discipline of Civil Engineering, Structural Engineers are responsible for the core form, and shape, of a structure. Working closely with Designers they ensure vessels are stable, rigid and strong (to put it simply). In essence they create the muscles and bones that hold a ship together.

Having a comprehensive understanding of static and dynamic loading is just the start line in this profession. As modern Designers keep raising the bar, so too must our engineers strive for creative techniques that meet the brief, whilst ensuring structures can both support and resist the loading they will be subjected to.

Hythe Marine Structural Engineers must be clever with materials, calculate the effects of loading and be adept at working within budgets, and with Designers. In essence they are the person in the background, without which, we would not have many of the incredible vessels we see today.

Currently contracted by HMS to BAE Systems in Barrow, Hythe Marine Engineers and Designers are assisting with the Dreadnought Programme.

Here we find out what it’s like to be a Structural Engineer and Designer, working on some of the biggest projects in the world. And why many of the team have been doing it for over forty years.

 

The Dreadnought Programme

BAE Systems are leading the design and construction of a new class of submarines. A class that will carry the UK’s independent nuclear deterrent.

Hythe Marine Services contract specialist Engineers to BAE Systems, where they provide structural and design support. As the leader of the build, BAE Systems is due to deliver four new submarines to the Royal Navy, replacing the current Vanguard class.

With the first of the submarines due in 2030 it’s clear the team are incredibly busy. BAE Systems stated on their website that, “The next generation of nuclear deterrent submarine is widely considered to be one of the world’s most complex engineering challenges. Technological advances, threat changes, new methods of design and production mean the new submarines will be a completely new design. Once built, the submarines will measure 152.9 m long, with a displacement of 17,200 tonnes.”

The Dreadnought class are expected to be the largest submarines ever built for the Royal Navy. They will require 42.5 km of piping, almost 13,000 electrical items and 20,000 cables. This will also be the first submarine class to have separate female quarters, toilets and washing facilities, as well as an innovative lighting system that enables the crew to simulate night and day.

The Royal Navy are calling this project the Successor Programme and on October 21, 2016, the name of the first Successor was announced as HMS Dreadnought.

At present Structural Engineers and Designers from HMS continue to work with BAE Systems at Barrow-in-Furness. By nature they are not able to tell us much about their work, but as and when they are permitted to do so, we will share their stories with you here.

To read more about the Dreadnought Programme click here.

 

A career and a lifestyle of Structural Engineering and Design

Aside from their current work on submarines Hythe Marine’s history with BAE Systems goes back much further. The design talent of HMS can be traced right back to the 60’s when the company was known under the names Mathon Engineering B.V. and Avrotech International Design.

When asking a member of the team why he’s stayed with HMS for so long, he simply commented, “I have enjoyed working with my colleagues immensely as they have always been happy to stand up to a challenge. There has always been a social but professional side to this business which has helped me to sustain longevity within the industry.

In terms of the work, HMS have a core team of loyal, regular people who have worked on past projects together. As a result they all have a network of experienced colleagues, which gives HMS the advantage of being able to take on work with complete confidence in the ability of their team.”

 

Contracting specialist Engineering Services

When we asked what other projects some of the Hythe Marine team have worked on, the list was endless. The first to be mentioned was a 70 metre Fast Cat Car Ferry design.

“We were contracted to do the full steelwork, outfit, piping and mechanical packages from design scantlings and arrangements to piping and instrument diagrams and fabrication drawings.

From there we went on to work on a roll-on-roll-off ferry build, where the project was based on modifications to a previous client design. Due to these modifications the team had to work with the designer to revise existing steel and pipe work to meet the new specifications.”

 

BAE Systems before the submarines

After the ferry projects Hythe Marine sent a team of engineers to assist BAE Systems with their Landing Platform Dock and Auxiliary Oiler Naval Vessels. A package that included scantling drawings, equipment seat design, fabrication drawings and steelwork outputs for the primary steel.

After which they were seconded by BAE Systems to work on Type 45 destroyer vessels. This involved integration of equipment into a 3D model together with pipe systems for the ships mid-section.

As if the collection of incredible projects were not enough, it seemed they were only set to continue. After completing work on Type 45 destroyers the Engineers went on to contract services to warship design and construction company Vosper Thornycroft (VT) (later acquired by BAE systems in 2009), providing piping and steelwork for their Offshore Patrol Vessel Helicopter Project.

The team also checked structural drawings for the Trinidad and Tobago Offshore Patrol Vessels and the Oman Royal Navy Corvettes, with the majority of this work being carried out in Romania.

 

Why choose Hythe Marine for Engineering and Design services?

A simple question, with which the team replied, “When you work with Hythe Marine you get access to an incredibly experienced personnel resource. The team has a long established background of producing quality packages of work, on time, and to budget. This was a deep rooted trait of the past associated companies, in which most of the personnel have worked, a trait that still carries on today.

Many of the team previously worked for Mathon Engineering and later for Avrotech Design, a team and design talent that was later absorbed by Hythe Marine Services. Our teams enjoy working and socialising together. This industry is a small place and the camaraderie is simply unbelievable.”

What a great way to look at your career!

Looking for project support?

The University of Portsmouth Pharmacy Installation

The Hythe Building Services team stripped out all existing Domestic, Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning Services and installed a completely new system that included new wash hand basins within the new Consultant rooms, a VAV system complete with heating coils to control the optimum environment within the teaching spaces, intricate BMS modifications to incorporate the new systems onto the existing BMS Schnieder infrastructure. 

The project was a great success and Hythe went on to secure and deliver two other extremely time sensitive projects with Kier for The University of Portsmouth, our relationship with Kier and the University continues to flourish. 

 

 

Storage & distribution solutions for Heathrow Airport

Bespoke storage and distribution solutions

Who and what is HOSMU?

HOSMU is a Hythe Group company which was introduced to support the mass production of custom metal fabrication projects, providing innovative solutions to customers’ storage and distribution challenges.

The HOSMU concept was developed in partnership with Heathrow Airfield Operations, the safety and workplace supplier, Our Soles Ltd. and proven engineering specialists, Hythe Marine Services (HMS).

The resulting turnkey solution is a concept driven, manufacturing business capable of designing, delivering and implementing consolidated and organised storage of essential resilience equipment.

This process has been designed to give customers the highest quality solutions, based on Hythe Marine Services knowledge and experience from the marine sector, including cost efficiencies and speed of a production line.

 

The Heathrow Airport project

Hythe HOSMU was installed airside at Heathrow Airport in readiness for winter 2019/20. The installation provided a new solution for a consolidated, single point of collection, for essential winter resilience operating equipment.

Operational efficiencies are instantly improved by placing all equipment into one modular system (situated in multiple locations airside) which ensure self-help snow and ice clearance equipment is organised and readily available. By providing a clear focal point for organistaion and storage HOSMU ensures operational equipment is returned, reducing the likelihood of trip hazards whilst lowering the need for tool replenishment.

The HOSMU for each stand or airside location is assembled depending upon the footprint and operational requirements of the area. Each unit can contain a number of functions such as:

  • Winter operations locker
  • Winter media distribution hopper
  • FOD (Foreign Object Debris) and POL (Polluted waste) wheelie bin storage

Hythe HOMSU on stand

What was the problem Heathrow Airport’s winter resilience team faced?

You might be wondering what winter resilience really means? Heathrow has a team specifically dedicated to winter operations and they are entrusted to plan, prepare and manage robust strategies and resources for effective winter resilience. This may concern the shocks and stresses of winter weather, such as snow and ice, which impact airport operations.

Heathrow provides a number of useful tools and consumables which are kept in strategic areas of the airport for use by stakeholders and contractors as ‘self-help’. This ensures the safe passage of working areas in the event of ice or snow.

Heathrow had previously been using open mesh steel cages to house self-help equipment (brooms, shovels, scoops and buckets) and HDPE bins for the storage of winter media (grit and prilled de-icer) for in-situ distribution when required.

The open mesh steel cages offered no protection from the elements, nor did they provide any dedicated space for each of the self-help items to be kept in an organised fashion. Items were routinely being tarnished by exposure to the elements or lost in use.

In addition the HDPE bins were proving inadequate to store bags of prilled de-icer, especially when they had been partially used due to the products requirement to be kept dry at all times. Therefore a solution was required to enable safe, dry storage of the prill and grit allowing for accessible dispensing without any deterioration of the media or risk of manual handling issues – as grit or prill were lifted out of the bins in bulk, or scooped out from the bin whilst bending.

During a routine meeting with the Heathrow Winter Operations team to discuss the provision of PPE and safety workplace supplies (specifically related to the self-help clearance of Snow) Neil Robinson, managing director of Our Soles, was asked to provide concepts for robust self-help equipment that could develop innovative solutions to enable the safe storage and distribution of the items.

 

Why was Hythe Marine chosen to solve the problem?

Neil has been servicing Hythe Marine with safety kit and uniforms for almost a decade. During this time his relationship with key personnel within Hythe Marine Services has grown, as has his understanding of their capabilities related to turnkey projects. Neil’s experience watching HMS work made Hythe Group the perfect partner for this task. The project was reliant upon Hythes Marine’s metal fabrication and engineering skill set, and familiarity with bespoke problem solving, to ensure delivery of a robust, elegant and effective solution.

 

How did HMS solve the problem?

The brief was as follows:

  1. Manufacture a storage unit whereby all self-help tools could be safely stored and easily accessed.
  2. Design a hopper capable of dispensing prilled de-icer and grit without jamming whilst ensuring the disposal of media doesn’t involve any unnecessary bending or lifting
  3. Design a bin clamping mechanism to keep wheelie bins located airside and locked into one location
  4. Make the component parts modular

Following a number of meetings between key personnel the requisite self-help products to be housed in the locker were decided upon and each of the media. Prilled De-Icer and Aviation Grit were analysed for their mechanical properties to enable prototype hoppers to be developed. A shadow-boarded ‘locker’ was quickly developed that would effectively, safely and securely keep the tools shielded from the adverse weather conditions and ready for use when required.

The ‘Hopper’ was more of a challenge. After multiple trials of the media (particularly the prilled de-icer) in cold, wet, warm and dry simulated environments, and experimenting with numerous dispensing mechanisms, HMS Director of Value Engineering Luke Fitgerald and Operations Manager Greg Strange finally developed a solution. This is now in effective operation at Heathrow, dispensing media reliably, safely and accurately.

Following multiple prototypes, client led revisions and design developments the final HOSMU locker prototype was produced in time for presentation at the Summer Airside safety event in May 2019. At the event it was presented to the airside community for feedback as well as the winter operations team for approval.

 

What was difficult about the bespoke requirements of this project?

This project was different to others Hythe Marine Services is used to due to the requirement for airside stand locations and proximity to aircraft. Numerous operational safety considerations needed to be adhered to in order to enable a safe and robust solution to exist airside. The most tricky element was the design and mechanism of the hopper, specifically for prill which is a notoriously difficult media to work with.

This is what led to the pioneering bespoke hopper design. All modular component parts have been bespokely manufactured to the original brief.

 

What is difficult to adhere to airport regulations?

Numerous operational safety instructions exist for contractors working airside at Heathrow of which HOSMU are proud to have complied with in delivering this project.

Specific safety management systems were built to assist the project in complying with HOSMU’s obligations to the project Risk and Method Statements, control and procedures for aerodrome works.

Adherence to ground operations in terms of use of personal protective equipment, airside cleanliness and FOD management in accordance with the airport operations plan, alongside our commitment to environmental management and sustainability, all featured as part of the project delivery.

 

Future Development Plans for HOSMU?

To provide additional operational resource and further reduce hazards in operational areas, we are proposing the following additional equipment storage:

  • Cone and Cone trolley storage
  • Sawdust storage for minor spills
  • A tiered approach to chock storage

This will give ramp users a one-stop location for all equipment associated with the safe and efficient turnaround of aircraft, as well as providing our stakeholders with the necessary tools to carry out their role.

 

Looking for a bespoke storage and distribution solution?

Helping prepare HMS Prince of Wales for sea trials

HMS Prince of Wales is the second Queen Elizabeth-class aircraft carrier commissioned for the Royal Navy and will be in full active service by 2020. The vessel has been designed to operate V/STOL aircraft, and is currently planned to carry up to 40 F-35B Lightning II stealth multirole fighters and Merlin helicopters, for airborne early warning and anti-submarine warfare.

HMS Prince of Wales has a minimum crew of 700 which will rise to 1,600 once the aircraft and their crew are also onboard. It is hard to comprehend the size of this supercarrier, currently undergoing sea trials in Scotland, which is 280 metres in length and weighs an impressive 65,000 tonnes.

 

Hythe Marine Services: Working on-board HMS Prince of Wales

We spoke to Pete Davies, Site Manager at Hythe Marine Services, about the work their team was involved with on-board. Based in Rosyth, Hythe were initially recruited to work on a ‘water-tight-doors’ project. Starting in February 2019 the team worked to ensure there were no leaks on the vessel once the ship had been released into the water. There is a certain level of settlement on any new ship when going from the dry dock to the water stage, as they are designed to move without fractures. However, this settlement does mean that the vessel can be put under different strain points throughout the boat. Once the vessel was put in the water, and the shape of certain fittings had changed, the Hythe Marine team worked to make the required adjustments, such as those made to the corridor doors, by refitting door frames and welding them securely in place.

Initially, the contract was just for these doors, but once onboard Hythe was also recruited to supply joiners to C.C.I. compartments. This involved the completion of individual sections, for example, emergency signage for exits and “way out” arrows, in case of black out, brackets for fire extinguishers, and so on.

Hythe Marine Services then fitted smoke boundaries throughout the internal corridor lengths. Using safe water-tight doors at either end of each long corridor can cause potential issues when it comes to fire safety. Hythe Marine Services overcame this by fitting smoke boundary doors throughout the lengths of these passages.

The team also provided 400 eyelet switches for air conditioning units, many of which are at a great height. The switches allow for an immediate manual shut-off lever to be actioned on the air conditioning unit, to prevent the movement of smoke. 

Other tasks involved completing sealing work on the VanDam doors as the lifts for their ammunition needed to be completely sealable. Hythe used a Belzona treatment which is water repellent and breathable. The areas had to be shot blasted first, to ensure that they were perfectly clean before being treated. The HMS team is incredibly privileged to have eight people certified (and growing) in specialist Belzona treatments, as there are not many people within the industry who retain these skills. Luke Fitzgerald and Simon Pay promoted the treatment to the Royal Navy and Babcock as a strong solution to their requirements.

 

The team behind the skills

These tasks were governed by budgets and timescales because of the fixed deadline of the sea trials, so it was essential to have a productive team on the job. Pete’s crew consisted of four platers, two welders and two labourers. As it was such a prestigious role, some apprentices were assigned for on-the-job experience training as well, giving them invaluable insight into what it’s like to work with Royal Navy vessels.

The teams travelled to Rosyth and worked intense twelve hour days, six days per week for six weeks.  They then switched teams and had a few weeks either side as time off. Pete stressed that the ethos that underpins Hythe Marine and its team is that they go above and beyond to protect and care for their employees who often work away from home in some rather extreme environments.

 

The challenges of working on a sea ready vessel 

Being involved in the early design stage of shipbuilding is normal practice for Hythe Marine Services, however, this project was a vessel eight years into the build, in the water and ready for sea trials.  This meant that there were additional safety factors that needed to be considered, as flammable materials were surrounding the work that they needed to complete. All the electrics were running through the ship, along with pipework for plumbing and air conditioning. There was a lot of pre-preparation required, including speaking with the other trades onboard and the HMS Prince of Wales crew, to ensure it was possible to isolate areas, and work safely, without interrupting other operations being carried out at the same time.

 

A great reputation speaks volumes

Hythe Marine Services is based in a Naval dockyard and therefore have a close relationship with the Royal Navy. Every Royal Navy job goes out to tender, but the combination of previous excellence in work conducted with the Royal Navy and on HMS Queen Elizabeth, the 45s and the Minesweepers, along with a highly skilled workforce, ensured that Hythe was at the forefront of this project. As a result HMS recently started work on a submarine project in Barrow based on the excellent response they received from the watertight doors project.

 

What comes next?

When you consider the size of these aircraft carriers, it will always be a work in progress to keep the vessel in top condition. The Hythe Marine teams worked hard to develop strong working relationships with the Duty Officer of the day, the  Duty Mechanical Engineer Senior Rate (D.M.E.S.R’s) and the Duty Weapons Engineer Senior Rate (D.W.E.S.R’s) to ensure tasks were carried out safely. For example isolations had to be put in place if the work to be done was ‘hot work’, electrical, or on sections of pipework to be altered and/or tested. Even though Hythe Marine work to strict time schedules and tight budgets, within this industry safety must always come first.

Ian Cockburn Senior Manager at Babcock International Group stated that “Pete is a credit to the company, his professionalism and working ethos are second to none, he gave clear and precise reports on every aspect of the work that was carried out by Hythe, especially as the packages increased. The work carried out by the site team was seen as a success story, where (once again) the success rate was maintained at a 100% pass, which lays testament to the attention to detail and the leadership demonstrated. To the point that I have made a specific request that the same team be made available for further works if requested when she is in her home port.” He also added that, “the term of endearment we named Pete with ‘Sneaky Pete’ was not a derogatory phrase, it was a reflection of how he just seemed to appear and disappear in a flash!”

 

So, what now for HMS Prince of Wales?

In September the vessel set off for nine weeks of sea trials and will be heading towards Portsmouth in November. Once the sea trials are done and the finished completion package is presented it will be handed over from the Aircraft Carrier Alliance to the Royal Navy.

 

The Royal Navy: Putting their life on the line

Pete Davies’ passion for the company he works for shines through, with him even stating “I really wish I had met Hythe Marine Services earlier in my career. The company and all the staff are great to work with”.

When we asked Pete about his passion for the job, he summarised brilliantly with a few sentences that give you goosebumps. “I’m proud to be looking after our Royal Navy, they are putting their life on the line for our country. I couldn’t serve for our country, so I make sure that I look after the people that do.They deserve a safe working life.  Myself, the team and Hythe Marine Services ensure that for them, in the work we complete for the crew and their military vessels”

What a great way to think about your working life!

Looking for a solution to a bespoke project?

 

Hythe Marine team up with HMS Queen Elizabeth crew for pit stop service

Hythe Marine Services team up with the Royal Navy crew onboard HMS Queen Elizabeth for pit stop service and maintenance.

The Royal Navy’s HMS Queen Elizabeth is the newest flagship within her class of aircraft carriers. Capable of carrying up to 40 F-35 Lightning jets and weighing an astounding 65,000 tonnes HMS Queen Elizabeth is the largest, and arguably the most impressive, vessel ever built for the Royal Navy.

Hythe Marine Services fast response team

In August this year Hythe Marine Services (HMS) Director of Value Engineering Luke Fitzgerald, a Hythe Marine veteran of over thirteen years, was contracted to carry out routine maintenance work on HMS Queen Elizabeth at Portsmouth’s naval base.

Unlike normal service pit stops this one required rapid response from the HMS team who needed to ensure HMS Queen Elizabeth was fighting fit and ready to dock-out in record time, ahead of the vessels departure for sea trials in America.

Quality of workmanship, speed and efficiency is essential when working within the fleet, delays and or unforeseen repair work can not only cost a huge amount of money, but cause knock on effects for the ship and crews entire operational schedule.

As Luke explained, “Not just any welder can jump in and do the work we do, as you must have specialist qualifications. Any of the welding undertaken on these vessels requires you to be a Lloyds registered welder before you’re even permitted to step onboard. To do this we weld a pipe (or a test piece) in our workshop, Lloyds witness it and then it gets sent away for testing. When Lloyds confirm the test piece qualifies within their quality standards, then you’re allowed on the ship. Every time we do a job we are required to submit evidence that then gets sent to a third party for non-destructive testing, to prove the quality is there.”

 

Sea inlet maintenance and servicing

One of Luke’s jobs was the inspection and maintenance of sea inlets onboard the aircraft carrier. Sea inlets are used to allow water into the ship to cool machinery. By their nature these pipes are regularly exposed to salt water and as such detailed maintenance and care is essential. You have to know what to look for so you can spot any possible signs of wear in the early stages, make repairs and avoid costly delays.

 

What makes Hythe Marine services different?

One of the things that sets HMS apart is their deep history within the industry, Luke in particular has worked on every vessel across the Royal Navy fleet and knows the crews and managers well.

As Luke commented, “We are acutely aware that time is of the essence for the Royal Navy. Requests for support might come in at the last minute and you need to be able to respond instantly, retaining the skills in-house, to get the job done right there and then. My mission is to keep service and maintenance disruption to a minimum by keeping an eye on metal work and ensuring it’s looked after well.

The key thing about HMS ship repair welders is that we can do the same quality of work as someone in a spacious workshop, but in the rather limited confines of a ship. We know the crews, the rules and regulations so rather than losing time and money by having to remove parts and bring them back ashore for servicing, our team wedge themselves into some rather interesting spaces to get the job done onboard. The result is valuable time saving for the Royal Navy and in some cases quick solutions to what otherwise might be seen as a mission impossible.”

 

Ramp light design services

Luke wasn’t the only Hythe Marine Engineer onboard that day, Greg Strange, an HMS Production Engineer, was busy collaborating with BAE Systems on designs and drawings for the installation of new ramp lights.

HMS Queen Elizabeth set sail at the end of August to carry out F-35 Lightning sea trials in North East America, we look forward to seeing her back in Portsmouth with HMS Prince of Wales soon!

 

About Hythe Marine Services

With a global reach, HMS have a highly skilled team of shipbuilding engineers and designers.

As an independent family run business HMS is the leading turnkey provider of engineering, fabrication, design and repair services to the marine, civil engineering and waste management sectors. Trusted to deliver projects and packages for the full life-cycle of valuable afloat and civil infrastructure assets.

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Basingstoke College of Technology

Christchurch Care Home

HMS Queen Elizabeth: Hythe Marine Showcase

Hythe Marine Services and HMS Queen Elizabeth

The team at HMS are proud to have supported both HMS Queen Elizabeth and the team at BAE during her recent visit to her home base of HMNB Portsmouth. Hythe Marine Services conducted mechanical works, fabrication works, electrical and hydraulic engineering as well as consultancy support to ensure that HMS Queen Elizabeth is ship shape.

Hythe was able to showcase its ability to integrate with the world leading BAE team and the Royal Navy on a vast array of different projects and packages during this period with up to 100 HMS staff involved on any given day.

The Royal Navy aircraft carrier left Portsmouth on Monday and is making a trip to the dry-dock in Rosyth in Scotland for maintenance work. She will also be reunited with her sister ship HMS Prince of Wales to begin a six-week maintenance period.

During the dry-dock period, the carrier will undergo a routine, planned hull survey and maintenance of its underwater systems, according to the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD).

Once completed, Queen Elizabeth will return to HMNB Portsmouth and continue to conduct a period of helicopter trials in UK waters before heading to the east coast of the US later this year for more fixed-wing flight trials involving Lockheed Martin F-35B Lightning II aircraft.

UK’s New Carrier “Ready to Roam”

Britain’s flagship of the future has demonstrated that it can now strike out anywhere across the globe after refuelling at sea for the first time.

After a dry run, HMS Queen Elizabeth successfully took on fuel, receiving ‘amber gold’ from RFA Tidespring, the tanker purpose-built to support the new aircraft carrier on her global operations.

For the maiden transfer, just 220 ‘cubes’ of F76 marine fuel was sent across on both her port (left) and starboard (right) sides. The replenishment was more about testing the principle rather than the carrier’s tanks running low.

HMS Queen Elizabeth is due to return to Portsmouth shortly for a spot of maintenance, leave for her crew and preparations for her maiden voyage across the Atlantic in the early autumn, when she conducts flying trials with F-35B Lightning stealth fighter/bombers for the first time.

The team at Hythe Marine Services is looking forward to welcoming the carrier back to its home port at HMNB Portsmouth and to support her crew and conduct preparations for her maiden voyage across the Atlantic in the early autumn when she conducts flying trials with F-35B Lightning stealth fighter/bombers for the first time.

Hythe Marine Services is the Marine industry’s choice for quality engineering services due to our multi-skilled, cross-platform approach ensuring that each member of the team across the business has a wide skill-set and expert industry knowledge. We provide engineering teams to attend vessels throughout the UK and internationally for a variety of marine projects, planned or reactive ship repair and maintenance such as the preparing the Royal Navy’s new Aircraft Carrier for her maiden voyage.

Aircraft carrier dry dock success

HMS Queen Elizabeth

HMS Queen Elizabeth has successfully completed her first dry docking in Rosyth which comprised primarily of a routine hull survey and maintenance of her underwater systems. This £5M project sustained 100 jobs with Babcock at its peak. The MoD had been considering tenders for this work for over a year but it is not surprising that Rosyth was selected as the winner. HMS Prince of Wales is still being fitted out onsite before delivery and much of the highly skilled workforce and management team that built QE is still employed there. The support facilities are fantastic and the site has a high standard of security.

The team at HMS are proud to have supported both the Royal Navy’s new Flagship and the team at Babcock in Rosyth. Hythe Marine Services conducted welding and fabrication support during the refit as well as Rigging, slinging and fleeting work aboard the carrier.

Hythe was able to showcase its ability to integrate with the fantastic Babcock team with up to 30 HMS staff involved on any given day.

The Royal Navy aircraft carrier has left Rosyth and is making a trip to her home port of HMNB Portsmouth where she will no doubt take pride of place in the upcoming 75th anniversary of D-Day Celebrations.

After the celebrations, Queen Elizabeth will conduct a period of helicopter trials in UK waters before heading to the east coast of the US later this year for more fixed-wing flight trials involving Lockheed Martin F-35B Lightning II aircraft.