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The Royal Navy’s new aircraft carrier — and its largest ship ever — will be officially named by its namesake Queen Elizabeth in a naming ceremony on Friday (July 4).
With a displacement of 65,000 tonnes, the Queen Elizabeth will be the world’s second-biggest aircraft carrier, after the USS Nimitz, and larger than Russia’s Admiral Kuznetsov and China’s Liaoning.
The carrier enters service in 2020 and is expected to be in operation for 50 years.
The HMS Queen Elizabeth is being assembled in Rosyth, Scotland from six modules built around the United Kingdom. It was designed primarily for the F-35B Lightning II. The F-35B variation of the multi-role fifth generation fighter jet is a vertical and/or short take-off and landing (V/STOL) aircraft, which can take off on short runways and land vertically.
The HMS Queen Elizabeth will carry an assortment of 40 aircraft. In addition to the F-35 B, these will include Chinook heavy-lift helicopters, Apache attack helicopters and AW101 Merlins, which perform utility, transport and anti-submarine warfare roles.
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