THE second of the United Kingdom’s Queen Elizabeth Class aircraft carriers, HMS Prince of Wales, recently completed a successful sea trial in Scottish waters powered by GE’s full-electric propulsion system.

Out of the 110 megawatts of power running through the system, 80 MW can be dedicated to GE’s energy-efficient electric propulsion motors – that’s how much it takes to move the 65,000-tonne carriers. To put that into context, that’s the amount of electricity needed to power around 5,000 UK homes.

Today, the UK Royal Navy has more than 90% of its major ships operating with GE’s electric propulsion solutions, including HMS Queen Elizabeth, as well as the Type 45 destroyers, the new Type 26 frigates and the Royal Fleet Auxiliary’s Tide Class tankers.


GE’s Marine Power Test Facility at Whetstone, England, is the world’s only commercial, land-based facility capable of full-scale testing of integrated electric propulsion systems for naval applications.

Andy Cooper, managing director of GE’s power conversion business UK, said, “Our contribution to the UK Royal Navy has been extensive, supporting so many diverse naval ship classes.

“As the program for the second carrier, HMS Prince of Wales, nears completion, another important milestone has been achieved through the successful sea trial.”