Subject to final confirmation* the plan is for HMS Queen Elizabeth to sail from Portsmouth on Monday 30th October shortly after midday.
The weather outlook appears very favourable with very good visibility wind speeds well below the 15-knot safe maximum for entering or leaving the harbour. Portsmouth Harbour channel will be closed to all other shipping for some time and the move will require the assistance of 6 tugs.
Nearly 11 weeks after her first arrival in Portsmouth on 16th August, HMS Queen Elizabeth is ready to begin part 2 sea trials which will mainly focus on mission systems, radars, communications, and electronics. In preparation for full-scale flying trials next year, the ship will also conduct air flow pattern tests, which demonstrate how air across the flight deck will affect aircraft taking off and landing.
Apart from a pair of additional flight deck information displays, there are few external clues to considerable engineering work that has been going on below decks in the last 3 months. Teams of Aircraft Carrier Alliance engineers, some brought in from Rosyth, together with Portsmouth-based staff have been at work fine-tuning the ship’s machinery and completing fitting out tasks. She has not yet been fitted with her Phalanx close-in weapon system or 30mm cannons, which will be added in 2018, along with equipment to support F-35 operations such as the Instrument Carrier Landing System (ICLS).
The Aircraft Carrier Alliance is confident that they are on target for the next major milestone when, in early December the ship will be handed over to the RN and formally commissioned in the presence of HM the Queen. Fixed wing aircraft flying trials will be conducted towards the end of next year and RN should be able to declare Initial Operating Capability (IOC) for Carrier Strike by late 2020.
*Like all naval shipping movements, the decision to sail is always at the discretion of the captain and may be subject to last minute change.
from Save the Royal Navy http://www.savetheroyalnavy.org/hms-queen-elizabeth-to-sail-for-part-2-sea-trials/