**** SINGLE DECK CARRIERS ****
Given the very wide beam of catamaran and trimaran craft, has anyone thought of developing a through deck aircraft carrier with the flight and hanger decks on the same level? That is a catamaran or trimaran carrier with a greatly enlarged island incorporating the hanger. With frigate like hanger roller doors out onto the flight deck. The island hanger might take up 30 to 50% of the surface area of the main deck. The general effect might be a bit like the General Dynamics version of the LCS, though more extreme with an even larger flight deck and a through deck.
Such a design might have several advantages:
• Simplicity, from the removal of the need for lifts.
• Strength, as the flight/hanger/main deck would not need to include several large holes for the lifts.
• Lower centre of gravity as there could be one fewer decks and the fight deck could closer to the waterline.
Though of course the principle disadvantage would be low hanger capacity.
Other disadvantages might be:
• Possibly narrow flight deck.
• Larger wind currents from the larger island interfering with landings, even STOVL landings.
• Stability problems due to the large island offset to one side.
Does anyone think this idea might have any merit? Has anyone prepared any designs or concepts along these lines?
Presumably this concept would relate more to smaller STOVL or helicopter carriers but theoretically a larger angled deck CATOBAR carrier might also be possible. Especially as the angled deck might counter weight the enlarged island.
Another possible option might be to have the hanger at the forward end of the flight deck, under and in front of the STOVL ski jump, with a hanger door to starboard and the ski jump to port, with the ski jump maybe a third of the way back from the bow.
**** WIND OVER DECK ****
Also, as many catamaran or trimaran craft have speeds (at least in calm sea states) of 40, 45, or even 50 knots, is their any possibility of the high wind over deck speeds being used to assist the launching and recovery of STOL aircraft or UAVs?
Here I was thinking primarily of using turbo prop light STOL transport type aircraft as carrier based AEW, ASW, or COD aircraft, with the later being used to fly supplies in and casualties out from forward operating amphibious task groups.
True, the wide hanger island could greatly restrict the possible wing span of these STOL aircraft, and a STOVL ski jump would interfere with run ups into the wind. But wind speeds of 80km/hr upwards would certainly help!
The advantage of this arrangement would be that no catapults would be required, but longer endurance fixed wing aircraft might still be able to be operated.