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HMS Invincible (R05)

The sixth and current HMS Invincible (R05) is a light aircraft carrier, the first of three in the Invincible class. She was built at Barrow-in-Furness[?] by Vickers Shipbuilding and Engineering. She was laid down in 1973, and launched on 3 May 1977. The ship commissioned on July 11, 1980, and joined the older carriers HMS Hermes and HMS Bulwark[?] in service.

The carrier's air group comprises nine Harriers and twelve helicopters (usually all Sea Kings, either ASW or AEW variants). The carriers also provide a operational headquarters for the RN task force. The runway is 170 m long and includes the characteristic "ski jump" (initially 7 it was later increased to 12).

For defence the carriers have a number of systems. They have either the Raytheon or the Thales Goalkeeper CIWS; they also have two 20 mm Oerlikons. Countermeasures are provided by a Thales jamming sytem and ECM system, Sea Gnat launchers provide for chaff or flare decoys. Initially the carriers were also armed with a Sea Dart SAM missile system, these were removed in order to increase the flight deck size and to allow magazine storage for Royal Air Force Harrier GR7's.

  • Length: 209 m
  • Beam: 36.1 m
  • Draught: 8.4 m
  • Displacement: 20,400
  • Crew: around 1000 including aircrew, can carry an extra 500 soldiers
  • Power: 4 of Rolls Royce Olympus gas turbines, COGAG (100,000 shp)
  • Speed: 28 knots, 18 knots cruising
  • Range: 7000 nm at 18 knots

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