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Saunders Roe Hovercraft Aircraft Carrier

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Just to carry on from my last post. The hoverliner of the 60s is exemplified by this artwork from one of a pocket book series on ships.

The US also got in the hover carrier act and I know these are familiar but make no apologies for posting them to show that the idea was still alive and well in the 70s. Finally, doesnt this Disneyplanes carrier have more than a touch of vstol hovercarrier about it?
 

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Grey Havoc

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I've done some rescaling and the island comes out at 45 feet by 10 feet. But the Scimitar on the deck comes out at 60 feet as opposed to the actual 55 feet.
There is also a complete lack of any fire-control for the four Seacat launchers and having a 984 for three Scimitars seems unlikely and there is no associated target indication radar for example. More of a pure imaginative concept than a thought-out proposal.
I suspect it was intended more as a high speed aircraft ferry intended to be able to operate within a warzone and to be able to quickly bring replacement aircraft within easy flying distance of aircraft carriers that needed them, rather than as a small combat carrier in it's own right.
 
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Mike Pryce

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TomS

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Well spotted. According to Google Translate, it's a 1960 Sanders-Roe design -- 1500 tons, 88 meters long.
 

JFC Fuller

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It even comes complete with a Type 984 radar, that catapult run is very short though.

I love the techno-optimism, a nuclear powered aircraft carrying hovercraft!
 

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And on 1.500tons no less! Like putting a reactor in a Frigate!
By the what was/is the smallest vessel which ran/run on nuclear power? If my memory serves right even the Nuclear Icebreakers are heavier!
 

TomS

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And on 1.500tons no less! Like putting a reactor in a Frigate!
By the what was/is the smallest vessel which ran/run on nuclear power? If my memory serves right even the Nuclear Icebreakers are heavier!
Probably NR-1, the US Navy's nuclear research deep submersible submarine, at ~400 tons.
 

Grey Havoc

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It even comes complete with a Type 984 radar, that catapult run is very short though.

I love the techno-optimism, a nuclear powered aircraft carrying hovercraft!
I suspect it was intended more as a high speed aircraft ferry intended to be able to operate within a warzone and to be able to quickly bring replacement aircraft within easy flying distance of aircraft carriers that needed them, rather than as a small combat carrier in it's own right.
 

TomS

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It even comes complete with a Type 984 radar, that catapult run is very short though.

I love the techno-optimism, a nuclear powered aircraft carrying hovercraft!
I suspect it was intended more as a high speed aircraft ferry intended to be able to operate within a warzone and to be able to quickly bring replacement aircraft within easy flying distance of aircraft carriers that needed them, rather than as a small combat carrier in it's own right.
If the info at the link is to be believed (not totally convinced but it seems to hang together) this was meant as an ASW platform and the actual aircraft would have been some form of STOVL ASW aircraft (possibly with catapult assist, which would explain the really short cat?)

By the mid-1960s, the idea grew from this sketch to a 12,000-ton, 140-meter aircraft with 16 helicopters or STOVL aircraft. This version had immersed sidewalls (what we'd call an SES today) with conventional submerged propellers and a speed of 60 knots.

Both versions have that very distinctive Type 984 radar, which suggests something more than an aircraft ferry to me.
 

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Hood

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Don't we already have a thread about the Saunders Roe hovercraft carrier?
It's nothing to do with the subject of this thread though.
 

Jemiba

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Split and moved, but still yet, I haven't found that mentioned thread :(
 

Tzoli

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I assume this closed Nuclear Gas Turbine would not require the air intakes present on current Gas Turbine ships?
 

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Are hovercraft vulnerable to sea-mines?
... land-mines?
How long would bad guys need to develop a new generation of anti-hovercraft-mines?
 

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These catamarran,hovercraft, aircraft carriers mirror some earlier proposals for displacement hulled catamarran or trimarran escort carriers. The goal is to reduce hull rolling in heavy seas.
There have also been a few surface piercing catamarran proposals. Small waterline area hulls with the same objective of improving deck stability in rough seas. The question ermains: how light can you build an escort carrier before hangar volume or number of airframes suffers?
 

Tzoli

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Hovercraft are basically safe from underwater mines, as for floating mines under a few centimeteres below the sea level I'm not so sure, for floating mines surely not, though that depends on the sensor of the mine. Actually are floating (on the water level) mines still used in this modern age?
Land mines, that is tricky as to my knowledge almost all anti tank mines are designed to detonate when a certain force was applied to them (or detect metal?) but for a Hovercraft whose only the cushion touches the soil not much. On the other hand the large force of downward oriented air might be able to unearth them if the vehicle to be float over them?
Weren't military hovercrafts when under developing were tasted for such occasions?
 

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Sea mines come in so many varieties, it's hard to tell. Influence mines (acoustic, pressure, magnetic, etc.) are generally subsurface detonations, so true hovercraft should be pretty well insulated from the shock. Sidewall hovercraft (SES) would be potentially exposed, since they do have sidehulls and drivetrains in the water. Surface or shallow subsurface floating contact mines are definitely still a thing and could certainly threaten SES and skirted hovercraft.
 

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Would it be vulnerable to a magnetic mine?

Mind you, there's no hint of this in Ray Wheeler's book.
 

TomS

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Would it be vulnerable to a magnetic mine?

Mind you, there's no hint of this in Ray Wheeler's book.
See my comment about influence (including magnetic) mines above.

There was definitely interest in hovercraft for mine countermeasures by the Royal Navy and several others (the USN came close to buying a class of SES minehunters. Norway actually bought some.) Hovercrafts' apparent resistance to a lot of conventional influence sea mines was a factor. But there apparently were at least fears of dedicated anti-hovercraft mines with antenna triggers, to the extent that the National Hovercraft Trials Unit actually designed a team sweep to clear them (basically two hovercraft towing a chain between them).

Discussed in some detail here (from High Performance Marine Vessels by Liang Yun and Alan Bliault):

 

Jemiba

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Ah, yes, thank you, topics merged.
 
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