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    US Navy Aircraft Carriers

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    US Navy Aircraft Carriers Empty US Navy Aircraft Carriers

    Post  Russian Patriot Fri Jul 24, 2009 1:25 am

    Carrier Strike Group [CSG]
    Introduction

    Battle Groups


    US Carrier Groups:

    Carrier Task Force (CTF)

    Where are the Carriers?

    Kitty Hawk Strike Group
    Enterprise Strike Group
    Kennedy Strike Group
    Nimitz Strike Group
    Eisenhower Strike Group
    Vinson Strike Group
    Roosevelt Strike Group
    Lincoln Strike Group
    Washington Strike Group
    Stennis Strike Group
    Truman Strike Group
    Reagan Strike Group
     


    Deployment  Battle Force  Other  Deploys  Returns  
    CV CVW CG DDG DD FFG SSN AOE  
    WESTPAC 02 Lincoln CVW-14 CG-53
    CG-67 DDG-60 DD-992 FFG-37
    FFG-57 SSN-718 AOE-2 2002
    24 Jul 2003
    06 May
    WESTPAC 03-1 Constellation CVW-2 CG-50
    CG-52 DDG-69
    DDG-76 DD-965 FFG-43 SSN-771 AOE-7 2002
    2 Nov 2003
    2 Jun
    MED 03-1 Truman CVW-3 CG-56 DDG-57
    DDG-75
    DDG-79 DD-977
    DD-989 FFG-53 SSN-720
    SSN-765 T-AO-196
    T-AE-34 2002
    5 Dec 2003
    23 May
    MED 03-2 Roosevelt CVW-8 CG-68
    CG-71 DDG-51
    DDG-78
    DDG-81  FFG-52  AOE-8 2003
    4 Feb 2003
    29 May
    Kitty Hawk CVW-5 CG-62
    CG-63 DDG-56 DD-975
    DD-985  FFG-48
    FFG-51 SSN-698 T-AO 204 2003
    6 Feb 2003
    06 May
    WESTPAC 03-2 Vinson CVW-9 CG-54
    CG- DDG-82  FFG-54
    FFG-60
      2003
    6 Feb 2003
    19 Sep
    WESTPAC 03-3 Nimitz CVW-11 CG-59
    CG-65 DDG-53
    DDG-62
    DDG-65 DD-972  FFG 60 SSN-752 AOE-10 2003
    3 Mar 2003
    5 Nov
    MED 03-4 Enterprise CVW-1 CG-58
    CG-64  D-13   SSN-706 AOE-4 2003
    02 Oct 2004
    29 Feb
    MED 04-1 Washington CVW-7 CG-72 DDG-84  FFH-333  T-AOE-6 20 Jan 2004 26 Jul 2004
    Kitty Hawk CVW-5 CG-62
    CG-63 DDG-56 DD-975
    DD-985  FFG-48
    FFG-51 SSN-698 T-AO 204 18 Feb 2004 24 May 2004
    WESTPAC 04-1 Stennis CVW-14 CG-57 DDG-83  FFG-54 SSN-716 T-AOE-7 24 May 2004 01 Nov 2004  
    MED 04-2 Kennedy CVW-17 CG-66
    CG-69 DDG-64
    DDG-68
    DDG-80 DD-963 FFG-36
    FFG-50  AOE-3 07 Jun 2004 13 Dec 2004  
    WESTPAC 04 Lincoln CVW-2 CG 67 DDG 65
    DDG 86    AOE-7 19 Oct 2004 04 Mar 2005
    MED 05 Truman CVW-3 CG 61
    DDG-52
    DDG-87    SSN-706
    SSN- AOE-8 13 Oct 2004 18 Apr 2005
    WESTPAC 05 Vinson CVW-9 CG-54
    DDG-77
    DDG-89    SSN-717
    SSN- AOE-2 01 Feb 2005  31 Jul 2005
    WESTPAC 05 Nimitz CVW-11 CG-59 DDG-76
    DDG-90   SSN-724 AOE-10 07 May 2005 08 Nov 2005
    MED 05 Roosevelt CVW-8 CG-56 DDG-75
    DDG-79    T-AE 34
    T-AO 196 01 Sep 2005 11 Mar 2006
    WESTPAC 06 Reagan CVW-14 CG-57 DDG-73
    DDG-85    AOE 7 04 Jan 2006 06 Jul 2006
    WESTPAC 06 Lincoln CVW-2 CG-53 DDG-59
    DDG-86     27 Feb 2006 08 Aug 2006
    MED 06 Enterprise CVW-1 CG-55 DDG-74  FFG-47 SSN-757 T-AOE 6 02 May 2006 22 Nov 2006
    MED 07 Eisenhower CVW 7 CG 68 DDG 61
    DDG 87   SSN 750 T-AOE 8 01 Oct 2006 01 Apr 2007
    WESTPAC 07 Stennis CVW-9 CG-54 DDG-77
    DDG-88
    DDG-60
    DD-  SSN-722 T-AOE 10 16 Jan 2007 15 Jul 2007
    MED 07 Nimitz CVW- CG-
    CG- DDG-
    DDG- DD-
    DD- FFG- SSN-
    SSN- AOE- Mar 2007 Sep 2007
    MED 07 Washington CVW- CG-
    CG- DDG-
    DDG- DD-
    DD- FFG- SSN-
    SSN- AOE- Jun 2007 Dec 2007
    WESTPAC 08 Lincoln CVW- CG-
    CG- DDG-
    DDG- DD-
    DD- FFG- SSN-
    SSN- AOE- 2007  
    MED 08 Roosevelt CVW- CG-
    CG- DDG-
    DDG- DD-
    FFG- SSN-
    SSN- AOE- 2008  
    MED 08 Truman CVW- CG-
    CG- DDG-
    DDG- DD-
    HMS Manchester FFG- SSN-

    http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/agency/navy/csg.htm
    SSN- AOE- 2008
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    US Navy Aircraft Carriers Empty Reagan Carrier Strike Group :

    Post  Russian Patriot Fri Jul 24, 2009 1:50 am

    Reagan Carrier Strike Group Enters U.S. 5th Fleet
    Navy NewsStand

    Story Number: NNS060219-04
    Release Date: 2/19/2006 11:03:00 PM



    From USS Ronald Reagan Public Affairs

    ABOARD USS RONALD REAGAN (NNS) -- The Navy’s newest aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76), along with embarked Commander, Carrier Strike Group (CCSG) 7 and Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 14 arrived in the U.S. 5th Fleet Area of Operations Feb. 18 as part of a routine rotation of U.S. maritime forces.

    While in the region, Reagan will support Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom, as well as conduct Maritime Security Operations (MSO). More than 6,000 Sailors are currently assigned to the Reagan Carrier Strike Group.

    “The Ronald Reagan Strike Group is ready on arrival,” said Rear Adm. Michael H. Miller, commander, Carrier Strike Group 7.

    “Our past nine months of training have been in preparation to support our troops on the ground in Iraq and carry out Maritime Security Operations. It is an honor to serve with them and to once again prove President Reagan’s motto 'Peace through Strength' really works. With the speed, agility and persistence of the modern carrier strike group, we intend to make a difference in helping to set the conditions for security and stability,” said Miller.

    MSO help preserve the free and secure use of the world’s oceans by legitimate mariners and prevent terrorists from attempting to use the maritime environment as a venue for attack or as a medium to transport personnel, weapons or other material that could support their efforts.

    According to Reagan’s Commanding Officer, Capt. Terry B. Kraft, the ship was made ready for the Western Pacific deployment through the hard work and dedication of crew.

    “We have spent months of training preparing us for the types of real-world operations we are now conducting,” said Kraft. “I know this particular crew and air wing are ready to carry out any mission that will be asked of us during this deployment. This theater is where the rubber meets the road.”

    The Ronald Reagan Strike Group is comprised of CVW-14, Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 7, the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier Reagan, the guided-missile cruiser USS Lake Champlain (CG 57), the guided-missile destroyers USS McCampbell (DDG 85) and USS Decatur (DDG 73), the fast-combat support ship USS Rainer (T-AOE 7), and Explosives Ordnance Disposal Unit 11, Det. 15.

    The squadrons of CVW-14 include the “Redcocks” of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 22, the “Fist of the Fleet” of VFA-25, the “Stingers” of VFA-113, the “Eagles” of VFA-115, the “Black Eagles” of Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 113, the “Cougars” of Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron (VAQ) 139, the “Providers” of Carrier Logistics Support (VRC) 30, and the “Black Knights” of Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron (HS) 4.

    Commander, U.S. 5th Fleet's area of responsibility encompasses about 7.5 million square miles and includes the Persian Gulf, Red Sea, Gulf of Oman and parts of the Indian Ocean. This expanse, comprised of 25 countries, includes three critical chokepoints at the Suez Canal, the Straits of Hormuz, and the Straits of Bab al Mandeb at the southern tip of Yemen.


    http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/library/news/2006/02/mil-060219-nns01.htm
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    US Navy Aircraft Carriers Empty Nimitz Carrier Strike Group :

    Post  Russian Patriot Fri Jul 24, 2009 1:56 am

    Nimitz Carrier Strike Group Deploys to U. S. Central Command
    Navy NewsStand

    Story Number: NNS070403-03
    Release Date: 4/3/2007 2:53:00 PM



    From USS Nimitz Public Affairs Office

    USS NIMITZ, At Sea (NNS) -- More than 6,000 Sailors and Marines attached to the USS Nimitz (CVN 68) Carrier Strike Group (CSG) deployed from their homeport of San Diego on April 2.

    The Nimitz CSG will join the USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) CSG and relieve the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) CSG, currently operating in the Persian Gulf.

    Nimitz’s arrival will continue the current two-carrier presence in the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility, demonstrating the U.S. resolve to build regional security and bring long-term stability to the region.

    While deployed, the Nimitz CSG will work closely with allies to support Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Iraqi Freedom and to conduct Maritime Security Operations (MSO).

    “We’re ready to fight the war on terrorism and support troops on the ground in Afghanistan and Iraq,” said Capt. Michael Manazir, Nimitz commanding officer.

    This is the fifth deployment for Interior Communications Electrician 1st Class (SW) David Wilson, Nimitz's Combat Systems Department. He knows every deployment can be unpredictable.

    “You can’t really say 'this is what’s going to happen,' 'this is what you’re going to experience'; they’re all different,” said Wilson.

    This is the Nimitz’s third deployment to the Central Command area of operations in four years. In mid-2005, the Nimitz CSG operated in the supported operations in Iraq and throughout the region. In 2003, the carrier flew combat missions over Iraq and supported combat operations during an eight-month deployment.

    The Nimitz CSG, commanded by Rear Adm. Terry Blake, is comprised of Commander, Carrier Strike Group (CCG) 11, Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 11 and Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 23. It includes the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier Nimitz; guided-missile cruiser USS Princeton (CG 59); guided-missile destroyers USS Higgins (DDG 76), USS Chafee (DDG 90), USS John Paul Jones (DDG 53), and USS Pinckney (DDG 91); two detachments from the Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron Light (HSL) 49 “Scorpions,” and Explosives Ordnance Disposal Unit 11, Det. 15.

    http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/library/news/2007/04/mil-070403-nns01.htm
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    US Navy Aircraft Carriers Empty John C. Stennis Carrier Strike Group :

    Post  Russian Patriot Fri Jul 24, 2009 2:01 am

    John C. Stennis Carrier Strike Group Arrives in 7th Fleet

    Navy NewsStand

    Story Number: NNS070201-09
    Release Date: 2/1/2007 3:33:00 PM



    By Lt. Nathan Christensen, Deputy Public Affairs Officer, USS John C. Stennis Public Affairs

    USS JOHN C. STENNIS, At Sea (NNS) -- The USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) Carrier Strike Group (JCSSG) entered the U.S. 7th Fleet’s area of responsibility (AOR) Jan. 31, as part of a deployment to promote peace, regional cooperation and stability.

    While Stennis and the rest of the strike group, led by Rear Adm. Kevin Quinn, is scheduled to transit from 7th Fleet to U.S. Central Command to provide support for coalition forces operating there, JCSSG remains ready to respond to any mission in any theatre of operation.

    “Our strike group provides an agile, flexible, responsive and robust set of capabilities ranging from humanitarian assistance all the way up through major combat operations,” said Quinn, commander, Carrier Strike Group Three (CCSG 3). “We have spent a year preparing for this deployment and we are ready for whatever tasking comes our way.”

    Since the beginning of 2006, JCSSG has completed multiple training events, qualifications and inspections, leading up to certification as a combat-ready strike group.

    “Though we are planning to simply transit through the Pacific en route the Persian Gulf, we are prepared to respond to any emergent tasking in the Pacific Command area of operations,” said Quinn.

    The ship will remain postured to render aid in the region if needed, in support of Commander, U.S. 7th Fleet’s goal of delivering responsive, short-term readiness.

    JCSSG is comprised of Commander, CSG 3, Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 9, Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 21, the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier Stennis, the guided-missile cruiser USS Antietam (CG 54), the guided-missile destroyers USS Preble (DDG 88) and USS O’Kane (DDG 77), the fast combat-support ship USNS Bridge (T-AOE 10), and Explosive Ordnance Disposal Unit 11, Det. 11. In all, more than 6,000 Sailors are currently assigned to JCSSG.

    Commander, U.S. 7th Fleet is permanently embarked aboard USS Blue Ridge (LCC 19), which is forward deployed to Yokosuka, Japan. The 7th Fleet AOR includes more than 52 million square miles of the Pacific and Indian oceans -- stretching from the international date line to the east coast of Africa, and from the Kuril Islands in the north to the Antarctic in the south.

    More than half of the world's population lives within the 7th Fleet AOR. In addition, more than 80 percent of that population lives within 500 miles of the oceans, which means this is an inherently maritime region.

    “We are ready; we are sustainable; we are flexible; and we provide awesome combat capability,” said Quinn.

    JCSSG is headed west to provide support for U.S. and coalition forces operating in the 5th Fleet and will support Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom, be prepared to take part in Horn of Africa operations, and conduct maritime security operations (MSO).

    Coalition forces conduct MSO under international maritime conventions to ensure security and safety in international waters so that all commercial shipping can operate freely while transiting the region.

    http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/library/news/2007/02/mil-070201-nns01.htm
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    US Navy Aircraft Carriers Empty Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group :

    Post  Russian Patriot Fri Jul 24, 2009 2:08 am

    Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group Returns from Deployment

    Navy NewsStand

    Story Number: NNS070523-25
    Release Date: 5/23/2007 6:42:00 PM



    By Mass Communication Specialist Seaman (SW) Seth Scarlett and Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class (SW) Carla Morton, USS Dwight D. Eisenhower Public Affairs

    ONBOARD USS DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER (NNS) -- Nearly 6,000 Sailors from Eisenhower (Ike) Carrier Strike Group's (CSG) ships and aircraft squadrons returned home May 23 after successfully completing an extended deployment of almost eight months.

    Eisenhower CSG deployed Oct. 3 in support of Operations Iraqi Freedom (OIF) and Enduring Freedom (OEF) and in support of maritime security operations (MSO) in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of responsibility (AOR).

    “I’m extremely proud of our nearly 6,000 men and women of the Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group,” said Rear Adm. Allen G. Myers, Commander CSG 8. “We were successful in supporting our coalition and regional allies by strengthening our collective efforts to keep the seas free, safe and secure for trade and commerce, conducting maritime security operations and flying missions in support of U.S. and multinational ground troops in both OIF and OEF.

    "Ike CSG's deployment reflected the speed, agility, persistent presence and joint/combined warfighting capabilities that a carrier strike group provides in support of our national defense.”

    Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 7 flew approximately 12,000 sorties and has put in more than 31,400 flight hours since deployment began, providing air support for multinational coalition forces on the ground in support of various operations in the U.S. Naval Forces Central Command AOR.

    “We supported joint coalition forces both in Iraq and Afghanistan, not only with kinetic effects, such as precision guided weapons and 20 mm cannon fire, but also with essential non-kinetic support through show of force and the work of the EA-6B, helicopter and E-2C squadrons,” said Lt. Dale Gregory, CVW-7 operations staff officer. “Throughout our deployment, we have been an essential part, whether that be in support of troops on the ground or in our mere presence at sea, global war on [terrorism].”

    The guided-missile cruiser USS Anzio (CG 68) supported MSO throughout the U.S. 5th Fleet AOR, from the Persian Gulf to the Arabian Sea. Anzio participated in 32 compliant boardings, demonstrating our nation's commitment to maintaining international sea lines of communications open to all mariners, free from the threats of piracy, smugglers and terrorists. Anzio's boarding teams provided both local fishermen and merchants with fuel, food and medical care to ensure their safety and spread a sense of cooperation to fellow mariners.

    While deployed to the Central Command AOR working for Combined Task Forces 150 and 152, the guided-missile destroyer USS Ramage (DDG 61) participated in multiple pulse operations across the AOR.

    These pulse operations focused on building a comprehensive recognized maritime picture in support of national and coalition tasking in numerous regions, to include the Red Sea, the Persian Gulf, the Gulf of Oman and the Horn of Africa. Ramage conducted more than 40 approach and assist visits, three boardings, more than 100 maritime-awareness calls and 13 coordinated maritime-awareness calls.

    The guided-missile destroyer USS Mason (DDG 87) successfully executed Exercise Neon Falcon, a bilateral exercise between the United States and Royal Bahraini navies.

    The exercise was a vital step toward the chief of Naval Operation’s goal of an international “1,000-ship navy.” Additionally, Mason, USS Whirlwind (PC 11), and Bahraini ships participated in extensive in-port and at-sea exercises designed to flex the warfighting capabilities of both navies.

    A critical part in supporting sustained operations are underway replenishments (UNREP). From bringing to the ship everything from jet parts to food to fuel, an UNREP is essential. USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) completed 36 UNREPs, taking on more than 8,000 pallets of supplies and approximately 21,000,000 gallons of JP-5.

    "The underway replenishment operations are critical to keeping Eisenhower Strike Group on-station and combat-ready," said Ike ship's bos'n, CWO3 Lyedell Gibson.

    Boosting morale and keeping Ike Sailors in touch with their loved ones, the ship’s post office and mail are very important to Ike and her mission. During deployment, Ike's postal clerks brought on more than 300,000 pounds of mail.

    Another division tasked with keeping the lines of communication open is Combat Systems, CS-3 Division.

    Since deployment began, there were approximately 6,800,000 e-mails sent off the ship and approximately 7,300,000 e-mails sent to the ship.

    "I think the techs in CS-3 Division are amazing," said CWO3 Ken Kipler, CS-3 Division officer. "They have directly impacted the mission of the strike group by ensuring that when the top leaders have had to make decisions, they had all the required information at their fingertips and the ability to communicate that decision over multiple communications paths."

    Sailors have many opportunities to stay in touch with their loved ones at home, including use of the United Through Reading (UTR) program, which was established to provide a way for Sailors to comfort their children during an extended absence, such as deployment.

    Ike broke the record set by the USS Enterprise (CVN 65) for the most participation in UTR, producing a record number of 2,066 messages during a single cruise.

    Food Service Division also played a big part in keeping the crew happy. In eight months, Ike Sailors have gone through 45,780 gallons of milk, 633,120 eggs, 155,189 pounds of ground beef and 238,970 pounds of chicken. Food Service Division served a total of 3,190,211 meals to the crew.

    "We have a lot of pride in preparing the quality food for the crew,” said Culinary Specialist 1st Class (SW/AW) Jerry Johnson. “We do our best to make sure everybody is happy with the food we serve. It's been a very challenging experience serving everyone while underway, but also a very rewarding one."

    Looking back on the cruise, Ike Sailors reflect on some of the best experiences they’ve had.

    “This was my first deployment,” said Storekeeper Seaman Shannon Gray. “It was really challenging, especially dealing with such a large crew. I really enjoyed all the ports we visited and experiencing new cultures. I also realize how much I have grown from the experience.”

    Ike Sailors also had the opportunity to take part in a Navy tradition when the ship conducted a “crossing the line” ceremony to commemorate the ship’s crossing of the equator.

    “What surprised me the most was when we crossed the equator,” said Yeoman Seaman Eric Tyson. “My dad is a Shellback, and I am really glad that I got to follow in his footsteps and become one myself.”

    The world famous Harlem Globetrotters visited Ike, bringing great basketball and entertainment to Sailors.

    “This was a great cruise for so many reasons,” said Damage Controlman 3rd Class (SW) Jon Gerringer. “I loved it when we had the Harlem Globetrotters on board. I had never seen them before and they were great.”

    “I believe this team excelled at every mission they were assigned. Our Sailors, 70 percent of whom had never deployed before, are the most inspiring men and women I’ve ever served with,” said Capt. Dan Cloyd, commanding officer of Dwight D. Eisenhower.

    “Looking back on the past eight months we know we’ve made a difference, that we saved lives every day and that we contributed significantly to the security and stability of uniquely important and remarkable parts of the world. We also know that our families helped make this excellence possible -- we can’t thank them enough for their sacrifices and support. It’ll be great to be together with them again,” Cloyd added.

    Eisenhower CSG includes the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier Dwight D. Eisenhower, with its embarked air wing, CVW-7, and embarked Destroyer Squadron 28; the guided-missile cruiser Anzio; guided-missile destroyers Ramage and Mason, all homeported in Norfolk.

    CVW-7 includes Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron 125 “Tigertails,” Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 103 “Jolly Rogers,” VFA-131 “Wildcats,” VFA-143 “Pukin’ Dogs,” VFA-83 “Rampagers,” Electronic Attack Squadron 140 “Patriots,” Helicopter Anti-submarine 5 “Nightdippers,” and Fleet Logistics Support Squadron 40 “Rawhides.”

    CVW-7 squadrons returned to Norfolk on May 21 and 22.

    http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/library/news/2007/05/mil-070523-nns03.htm
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    US Navy Aircraft Carriers Empty Ronald Reagan Carrier Strike Group Coming Home!

    Post  Russian Patriot Sat Oct 17, 2009 7:07 pm

    Ronald Reagan Carrier Strike Group Coming Home

    Navy NewsStand

    Story Number: NNS091015-12
    Release Date: 10/15/2009 3:17:00 PM

    By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class (SW/AW) Frank Nealy, Commander, U.S. 3rd Fleet Public Affairs

    SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- Four ships and more than 5,000 Sailors of Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 7 will return to their homeport of San Diego Oct. 21 after a five-month Western Pacific deployment.

    The Nimitz-class nuclear-powered aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76), the guided-missile cruiser USS Chancellorsville (CG 62), the guided-missile destroyers USS Gridley (DDG 101) and USS Howard (DDG 83) will arrive in San Diego to be greeted by family members on the pier.

    The guided-missile destroyer USS Decatur (DDG 73) and the guided-missile frigate USS Thach (FFG 43) will remain deployed in the Persian Gulf for a few extra weeks to provide maritime security operations (MSO), but are expected to arrive next month.

    "This is the finest team of Sailors I've been fortunate to call shipmate," said Rear Adm. Scott Hebner, commander, CSG 7. "I could not be more proud of each and every Sailor and their families. The Ronald Reagan Carrier Strike Group has been pretty busy the last few years, executing missions across the capabilities of our national maritime strategy – and answering the call with impressive results every time."

    USS Ronald Reagan and embarked Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 14 operated in the 5th Fleet Area of Operations, which encompasses the Arabian Gulf, Red Sea, Gulf of Oman and parts of the Indian Ocean, for more than two months, providing 30 percent of all air support to U.S. and coalition ground forces in Afghanistan. In total, the air wing flew more than 1,600 sorties in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

    Ships of the Ronald Reagan Carrier Strike Group were also vital in counterpiracy and MSO operations off of Somalia and the Horn of Africa, and protected vital Iraqi infrastructure in the North Arabian Gulf.

    "Every single Sailor knew how vital the mission was to accomplish," said Capt. Kenneth Norton, USS Ronald Reagan's commanding officer. "Because they understood, regardless of their operational tempo, they performed the mission, not just to get it done, but to get it done well. They're selfless. Everybody did their job well, to provide service to our Marines, Sailors, Soldiers, and Airmen in Afghanistan."

    Additionally, Ronald Reagan's Sailors participated in 50 community relations (COMREL) projects during port visits to Singapore, Dubai, United Arab Emirates, and Thailand.

    "Being able to afford our Sailors the opportunity to lend a helping hand to those who are truly in need, speaks volumes to the character of our Sailors," said Chief Religious Programs Specialist (SW/AW/FMF) Marcus Taylor, who coordinated Reagan's COMREL projects. "I believe the Sailors that volunteer really should be commended for their selfless efforts. It is a clear display of maturity and devotion to being goodwill ambassadors for the Navy and the United States."

    After returning home, many Sailors of the Ronald Reagan Carrier Strike Group will take leave to spend time with family and friends.

    "This is my second deployment in two years," said Interior Communications Electrician 2nd Class Adam Treptow, who will be going on leave to his hometown of Parker, Colo. "Homecoming is always an indescribable feeling. I'm too excited. This is a chance for me to get off the ship, relax, unwind and finally buy myself a new truck."

    The squadrons of CVW-14 include the "Redcocks" of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 22, the "Fist of the Fleet" of VFA-25, the "Stingers" of VFA-113, the "Eagles" of VFA-115, the "Black Eagles" of Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 113, the "Cougars" of Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron (VAQ) 139, the "Providers" of Carrier Logistics Support (VRC) 30, and the "Black Knights" of Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron (HS) 4.

    The Reagan is named after the 40th U.S. president, and carries the motto of "Peace through Strength," a recurrent theme during the Reagan presidency.

    http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/library/news/2009/10/mil-091015-nns04.htm
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    US Navy Aircraft Carriers Empty Alternatives to Super Carriers

    Post  Sujoy Wed Mar 20, 2013 5:13 pm

    Smaller, cheaper flattops; modified tanker ships; and missile-hauling submarines are three cheaper, more efficient and arguably more resilient options says a new study done for the US Navy by Navy Capt. Jerry Hendrix in his report entitled " At What Cost A Carrier " .

    http://www.cnas.org/files/documents/publications/CNAS%20Carrier_Hendrix_FINAL.pdf
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    US Navy Aircraft Carriers Empty Re: US Navy Aircraft Carriers

    Post  Firebird Wed Mar 20, 2013 5:41 pm

    Sujoy wrote:Smaller, cheaper flattops; modified tanker ships; and missile-hauling submarines are three cheaper, more efficient and arguably more resilient options says a new study done for the US Navy by Navy Capt. Jerry Hendrix in his report entitled " At What Cost A Carrier " .

    http://www.cnas.org/files/documents/publications/CNAS%20Carrier_Hendrix_FINAL.pdf

    Interesting this. I've been thinking about aircraft carriers. I thought the submarine with VTOL planes was an interesting idea- esp with Russia's prowess in building giant subs. I noticed Garry was not a fan of this idea.

    There are other options. A long time ago, planes landing on the sea was explored. Ofcourse this has limitations. But it also has advantages.

    There is also the option for a giant aircraft carrier eg a "temporary island" made up of several ships joined together.

    Another one is several small ships joining up to form a carrier platform. The advantage here is that the small ships can then split up and be less detectable.

    ANother option I wonder about is having two ships with some sort of "rolled out" runway "mat". More and more materials with properties like this could be developed with new tech.

    The final idea I can think of currently is a "micro carrier", fitted out with UCAVs etc, but no fighters etc.

    As an aside I wonder how far the concept of inflight refuelling could be brought forward.

    PS obviously a modified oil tanker isn't perfect. But it IS a cost effective possibility. Maybe it has a place...
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    Post  GarryB Wed Mar 20, 2013 11:29 pm

    I noticed Garry was not a fan of this idea.

    Which doesn't mean it is a bad idea of course... Embarassed

    But there are problems when you look into it.

    Smaller, cheaper flattops; modified tanker ships; and missile-hauling submarines are three cheaper, more efficient and arguably more resilient options says a new study done for the US Navy by Navy Capt. Jerry Hendrix in his report entitled " At What Cost A Carrier " .

    The first option is what the Russian Navy is going with in their Kuznetsov carrier in the 50-60K ton weight range... they lack long range strike capability, but that can be achieved with cruise missiles.

    Modified tankers on the other hand have problems because a real military ship is built to a standard of protection and safety, oil tankers are built for different considerations.

    An aircraft carrier isn't just something that floats with a flat top for planes to take off and land on... it needs to carry fuel and ordinance for those aircraft to keep them operational, which means it is a floating bomb. Without the correct design that is what it becomes.

    Modern angle deck carriers are designed so aircraft can take off and land at the same time. WIth a simple flat deck like an oil tanker a landing aircraft... if there was a problem and it lost control could hit aircraft near the front of the deck waiting to take off, so when planes are landing no planes can be sitting ready to take off and vice versa... which means very slow launch and recovery performance. The K can launch three aircraft at once, or have two launching and one landing at once if needed... with a flat straight deck on a tanker or container ship that would not be possible.

    A carriers power is its aircraft, so when the aircraft are on the carrier it is a target and a liability. When its aircraft are in the air it greatly extends the vision and reach of the ships it is operating with. Even more it can send planes out hundreds of kms to inspect and check things that ships alone could only launch missiles at or leave alone. An approaching blip on the radar could be an F-14 or an Airbus... a missile wont know the difference... an aircraft sent out to investigate why that blip is not answering the radio can.

    PS obviously a modified oil tanker isn't perfect. But it IS a cost effective possibility. Maybe it has a place...

    As an emergency measure it might be useful... especially as a helicopter carrier, but at the end of the day if you want to start making your container ships and oil tankers targets for the enemy then you are inviting trouble by making them legitimate targets... I imagine most enemies would love for their enemy to do this as it legitimises attacks on otherwise non military targets.

    BTW I would say I actually agree that 100K ton carriers are excessive and too expensive, but if you have them they are also very valuable assets as well... you don't need overflight or foreign basing permissions and they can move as a unit to different areas within weeks or days... a very powerful and useful tool.
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    Post  GarryB Wed Mar 20, 2013 11:48 pm

    Actually one could argue that in 2018-20 when the Kuznetsov comes out of refit... if there is a naval PAK FA ready then the long range strike capability of the bigger carriers starts to become achievable with a smaller lighter carrier with fewer planes and fewer weapons.

    Certainly a naval PAK FA that can take off from a carrier perhaps with a conformal Brahmos II like missile would be as potent a long range strike package as anything a Hornet could carry... if not more so.

    During WWII you could send 1000 heavy bombers to hit a factory and still have to send them out a couple of times to make sure the job is done. Improvements in guidance and precision means today you could send one or two planes to destroy specific targets, but you will still need inflight refuelling aircraft. AWACS, top cover fighters, jammers, SEAD aircraft to suppress enemy air defences etc etc. In 10-20 years time however real 5th gen fighters should be able to handle most of that themselves so instead of sending dozens of aircraft you can send half a dozen... all armed and ready to fight whatever rears up in their way.

    The PAK FA is smaller than a Flanker and its power to weight ratio should make takeoffs no problem at all... perhaps the carrier compliment for the K in the 2020s will be Mig-29K2s/-35 as the fighter inner defence component hunting incoming anti ship and anti radiation missiles and a PAK FA based naval aircraft for long range interception/interdiction and perhaps AWACS with 360 degree radar coverage...

    I wonder what the USN will do if that happens... F/A-12M?
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    Post  GarryB Thu Mar 21, 2013 12:02 am

    Of course another option could be a huge airship with a flat top that could be moored to a customised mooring ship, or released to operate on its own.

    Made out of modern lightweight and fireproof materials and using helium and hydrogen it could be a very interesting option.

    Note helium is not as efficient, but is not flammable, though it is more expensive... the main internal lifting bags could use helium that is not released, while selected internal bags isolated and in the centre of the aircraft could be filled with hydrogen separated from the air to reduce the fire risk. A fuel cell could be used to generate electricity and also convert hydrogen from water ballast and back.

    A common problem with airships is that as they fly they become lighter, so some lifting gas has to be released to allow it to control its height (ie land). That is ok with Hydrogen as it is cheap, but helium is expensive. By going with helium and not releasing it you save money and reduce the fire risk, but by having hydrogen and fuel cells that can consume hydrogen and create water ballast or create hydrogen from water then you have a means of changing your bouyancy without releasing any gas.

    As aircraft land and take off then hydrogen would need to be created or converted to water ballast to compensate... but airships able to carry 1,000 ton payloads or more are certainly feasable... and putting radar antenna arrays on their sides means AWACS aircraft would not be needed... in fact very long wave radar antenna could be incorporated in the airships structure to make even stealth aircraft visible at long ranges... and perhaps as communications systems that can chat to deeply submerged submarines.

    The Tu-142 has a very long antenna it uses for the purpose of communicating to submerged subs but it needs to keep the line as vertical as possible which means it needs to fly very slow, which is quite dangerously close to its stall speed... these airships could simply drop a line several kms long and talk to them at minimal risk.

    The new Russian AIP systems for their subs that use diesel could be incorporated and it could operate with AIP and electric and diesel propulsion. Dropping a hose line to a tanker for refuelling at sea would be fairly straight forward... it could be designed so it can land on the ocean for maintainence or refuelling or in an emergency...
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    Post  Firebird Fri May 10, 2013 6:03 pm

    GarryB wrote:Of course another option could be a huge airship with a flat top that could be moored to a customised mooring ship, or released to operate on its own.

    Made out of modern lightweight and fireproof materials and using helium and hydrogen it could be a very interesting option.

    Note helium is not as efficient, but is not flammable, though it is more expensive... the main internal lifting bags could use helium that is not released, while selected internal bags isolated and in the centre of the aircraft could be filled with hydrogen separated from the air to reduce the fire risk. A fuel cell could be used to generate electricity and also convert hydrogen from water ballast and back.

    A common problem with airships is that as they fly they become lighter, so some lifting gas has to be released to allow it to control its height (ie land). That is ok with Hydrogen as it is cheap, but helium is expensive. By going with helium and not releasing it you save money and reduce the fire risk, but by having hydrogen and fuel cells that can consume hydrogen and create water ballast or create hydrogen from water then you have a means of changing your bouyancy without releasing any gas.

    As aircraft land and take off then hydrogen would need to be created or converted to water ballast to compensate... but airships able to carry 1,000 ton payloads or more are certainly feasable... and putting radar antenna arrays on their sides means AWACS aircraft would not be needed... in fact very long wave radar antenna could be incorporated in the airships structure to make even stealth aircraft visible at long ranges... and perhaps as communications systems that can chat to deeply submerged submarines.

    The Tu-142 has a very long antenna it uses for the purpose of communicating to submerged subs but it needs to keep the line as vertical as possible which means it needs to fly very slow, which is quite dangerously close to its stall speed... these airships could simply drop a line several kms long and talk to them at minimal risk.

    The new Russian AIP systems for their subs that use diesel could be incorporated and it could operate with AIP and electric and diesel propulsion. Dropping a hose line to a tanker for refuelling at sea would be fairly straight forward... it could be designed so it can land on the ocean for maintainence or refuelling or in an emergency...

    I think airships (and ekranoplans) are a huge area for the navy and airforce to explore. My view is to use the airship/ inflatable landing strip just for landing planes. They could then be stored somewhere else eg in smaller ships, or even underwater.

    The hydrogen v fuel cell v helium debate is one to consider.Likeiwse, whether the airships should be at low or high altitude. Perhaps even use airships as an aerial launch platform for certain missiles..

    I really like the idea of modular construction. 3 airships coming together to form a landing strip etc..

    Obviously naval doctrine as adhered to a conventional path for many years. But with the advent of drones as "mini-planes", perhaps we will start seeing some divergence in coming year...
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    Post  runaway Tue May 14, 2013 1:28 pm

    [quote="Firebird"]
    GarryB wrote: Airships
    Made out of modern lightweight and fireproof materials and using helium and hydrogen it could be a very interesting option.

    I really like the idea of modular construction. 3 airships coming together to form a landing strip etc..

    The use of airship carriers has been tried, and rejected. They are to vulnereble to bad weather if anything else and i cant see them an serious option.
    See USS Akron (ZRS-4).
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    Post  GarryB Wed May 15, 2013 11:28 am

    Another feature of airships is their enormous size, so long wave radar built into the airships structure could be used for UHF and VHF and even ULF antenna fora range of detection and communication systems.

    Airships operating at very high altitude could fly above weather and could operate dozens of long wing high altitude UCAVs that operate at 20,000m or above while operating as AWACS for a naval force.
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    Post  George1 Mon Mar 16, 2015 9:20 pm

    US Carrier Group Joins Navy’s Sixth Fleet in Europe - US Navy

    The Strike Group includes the Theodore Roosevelt aircraft carrier, a destroyer squadron and nine aircraft squadrons, serviced by 6,000 sailors and Marines.

    The US Navy has started to deploy underwater drones beneath the arctic ice both to study the deterioration of the ice sheet due to climate change and to help plan for anticipated increases in traffic as previously frozen waterways open up.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The United States’ Theodore Roosevelt Carrier Strike Group, complete with tactical airborne early warning aircraft, joined the US Navy’s Sixth Fleet in Europe as it embarks on an around-the-world deployment, the US Navy said in a statement on Monday.

    “The strike group's various ships will work with allied and partner nations throughout Europe in order to continue building existing partnerships and improve war-fighting capability and interoperability,” the US Navy said.

    The Strike Group includes the Theodore Roosevelt aircraft carrier, a destroyer squadron and nine aircraft squadrons, serviced by 6,000 sailors and Marines.

    The carrier group will work on maritime security operations and European security cooperation.

    The deployment in Europe will be the first time the E-2D Hawkeye, an early warning aircraft with advanced radar, will be tied to the USS Theodore Roosevelt.

    Upon completing an around-the-world deployment, the Strike Group will be based in its new homeport of San Diego, California.

    The US Sixth Fleet is based in Naples, Italy, and is responsible for operations concerning Europe and Africa.

    Read more: http://sputniknews.com/military/20150316/1019579371.html#ixzz3Ua8JR1SS
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    Post  George1 Thu Mar 19, 2015 8:39 am

    Dual Band Radar Swapped Out In New Carriers

    WASHINGTON — In something of a surprise move, the US Navy revealed the long-touted dual band radar (DBR) being installed in new carriers of the Gerald R. Ford class will only be fitted on the first ship, and a new, yet-to-be-chosen radar will be installed on subsequent ships.

    The revelation came Tuesday as Rear Adm. Thomas Moore, program executive officer for aircraft carriers, spoke at the McAleese Credit Suisse defense conference in Washington.

    Moore indicated the move, decided upon last fall, was not due to particular problems with the DBR, now under development by Raytheon. Rather, he said, the decision was based on economics and need.

    "It's a very capable radar," he said of the DBR, but analysis showed the carrier didn't need all the system's capabilities. The move to the EASR, he told reporters, could save up to $120 million on the second ship, the John F. Kennedy.

    A specific EASR radar has not been chosen, Moore said, noting that "several candidates" were on the market.

    Raytheon has been working on the EASR oncept under a $6 million study and demonstration contract awarded in June 2014 by the Office of Naval Research. The ONR study, according to a press release, is intended to "leverage proven Radar Modular Assembly (RMA) architecture matured on Air and Missile Defense Radar (AMDR)." The EASR, like the AMDR — also under development by Raytheon to replace SPY-1 radars in new Aegis combat systems — is intended to be a scalable family of radars tailored to suit different sizes of ships.

    The complex DBR suite was once intended to be a cornerstone of a new combat system, fitted on DDG 1000 Zumwalt-class destroyers and CVN 78 Ford-class carriers. The system combines a SPY-3 X-band multifunction radar with a SPY-4 S-band volume search radar.

    The Navy decided in 2010 to remove the SPY-4 radar from the Zumwalt destroyers as a cost-reduction move, although the carriers were to retain the original configuration.

    With the decision to remove the DBR from subsequent ships of the class, the Ford now will be the only ship in the fleet to operate the full system.

    A spokeswoman for the Naval Sea Systems Command said an EASR Request for Proposals "should be forthcoming."

    The Ford, Kennedy and all other US aircraft carriers are built at the Huntington Ingalls Shipbuilding shipyard in Newport News, Virginia.
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    Post  Kyo Fri May 22, 2015 12:09 am

    Pentagon’s Newest Aircraft Carrier Already $370M Over Budget
    23:57 21.05.2015(updated 00:47 22.05.2015)

    The estimated cost to the US Navy's second Ford-class aircraft carrier is already $370 million above a Congressionally mandated cap set for its construction after the USS Ford ran $2 billion over budget.

    The cost of the USS John F. Kennedy was capped at $11.498 billion, but a new estimate from the Pentagon’s Cost Assessment and Program Evaluation office (CAPE) on Wednesday revised the numbers up to $11.868. That figure is a working estimate and the office is still waiting for more information from the Navy about particular costs to be confirmed.

    The USS Kennedy — also known as CVN-79, using the Navy's designation for a nuclear powered aircraft carrier — is the second of three Ford-class carriers included in a program whose budget is supposed to be $42.8 billion.

    Currently, Virginia-based Huntington Ingalls Industries Inc. has been building the carriers in the Ford-class program, and the Kennedy is supposed to be completed by 2023.

    Since the USS Ford — slated for delivery in March 2016 — ran $2 billion over budget to a final cost of $12.8 billion, current cost overruns are likely to encounter extra scrutiny.

    Sen John McCain (R-Ariz.) — a longtime critic of wasteful, bloated military spending — responded that cost overruns on this project could put the entire Ford-class project at risk.

    "Accountability must be restored to the Ford-class aircraft carrier program," McCain, who is the head of the Senate Armed Services Committee, said in a statement in response to the revised estimate. "Our nation simply cannot afford these kinds of cost overruns amid rising global threats and fiscal challenges."

    McCain asserted that he expects the Pentagon to tell his committee "who is responsible for this cost overrun and what will be done to hold those individuals accountable."

    The Pentagon has decided that no one is to blame, and no one will face consequences, for wasting a staggering $36 million building a shiny, new, sprawling military facility in Afghanistan that has never been used and will probably be demolished.

    It does not bode well that just the day before, McCain was also issuing statements of condemnation over the Pentagon's inability to do exactly that — find someone accountable — for the waste of $36 million on a Marine facility in Afghanistan that military personnel never even used.

    The Navy declined to respond to the latest estimates from CAPE.

    "We do not discuss pending legislation, however controlling and improving CVN 79’s cost is of highest priority to the Navy. The Navy is committed to maintaining the cost of CVN 79 within the Congressional cost cap of $11.498 billion," Navy leaders said in a statement.

    Broken Promises

    The cost increases come after many Navy officials had asserted that lessons from the USS Ford were being applied to the Kennedy to reduce costs.

    "I fully expect we will build Kennedy for a billion [dollars] less than we built Ford," Rear Adm. Tom Moore told Military.com in July 2013 as the first pieces of the Kennedy were being constructed, an expectation that is now almost certainly out of reach.

    US Navy Aircraft Carriers 1022434170
    The USS Ford - seen here under construction in 2012 - ran $2 billion over budget but the Navy promised most of those costs were due to its being the first of its class and would not recur with the USS Kennedy.

    Read more: http://sputniknews.com/military/20150521/1022434359.html#ixzz3aoVcTOuS

    The possible cost overruns — estimated at 3.2% of the original budget — are being evaluated while the Defense Department's chief weapons buyer, Frank Kendall, considers the approval of a $4 billion construction contract for the Kennedy.

    Beci Brenton, a spokeswoman for Huntington Ingalls, told Bloomberg in an e-mail that the company expects a contract by June 30.

    The Senate Armed Services Committee's version of the 2016 defense authorization bill, S. 1118, includes provisions to review costs for the Ford-class program and to limit some funds for the Kennedy and the third carrier in the program — the USS Enterprise.

    New Class, New Costs, New Concerns

    The Ford-class carriers feature larger deck space, with an electromagnetic catapult to launch jets into the air at sea, as well as more computer automation to reduce manpower needs compared to the Nimitz class.

    The new carriers are also designed to generate three times the electrical energy of their predecessors, with four 26-megawatt generators supplying 104 megawatts to the ship.

    One of the reasons the Navy said the Ford cost more, and the subsequent ships will not, is that it was the first of its class, and some of the engineering that had to be completed for it will not recur with the next two ships using the same model.

    For example, there were problems with the Ford's new advanced arresting gear which catches the jets as they land on deck. That particular component underwent a two year delay due to redesign needs.


    However, the Ford is not entirely complete, while work has already begun on the Kennedy, and it is still being equipped with some of the new advanced technology unique to the class.

    McCain has pushed to have certain "shock tests" moved up to be performed on the Ford, which the Navy would prefer to have wait to test on the Kennedy. But McCain has had concerns about the stability of the new systems.

    "These issues with CVN-78 raise questions about whether now is the time to award this contract for CVN-79, " McCain said. "This latest news report does not give me confidence that the Department of Defense understands the risk and cost of CVN-79, which they will be passing along to American taxpayers."



    Read more: http://sputniknews.com/military/20150521/1022434359.html#ixzz3aoTArsY2
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    Post  George1 Sat Jun 20, 2015 2:26 am

    US Navy Plans to Equip Next-Generation Aircraft Carriers With Laser Weapons
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    Post  max steel Tue Jun 23, 2015 3:12 pm

    This is America's new $13 billion warship



    The US Navy is less than a year away from adding the most expensive warship in history to its fleet, the $13 billion USS Gerald Ford.

    The USS Ford, the lead ship of the new Ford-class aircraft carrier series, is expected to join the US Navy by February 2016, according to CNN. Once deployed, the ship will be the largest carrier ever to ply the seas and will feature a number of changes and advancements over the US' current Nimitz-class aircraft carrier.

    Here's a look at this multi billion-dollar beast:

    The USS Gerald Ford is expected to cost upwards of $13 billion by the time it is deployed.

    The Ford, and the accompanying Ford-class carrier fleet, are intended to relieve stress and over-deployment within the US Navy. Currently, the Navy operates 10 carriers but wants an additional vessel to take pressure off of the rest of the fleet.

    The ship will feature a host of changes over the current Nimitz-class carrier. Ford-class carriers will be capable of generating three times more electrical power than the older carrier classes, for example.


    This increased electrical power supply allows the Ford to use the newly designed Electro-Magnetic Aircraft Launch System (EMALS), which will allow the vessel to launch 25% more aircraft a day than the previous steam-powered launch systems.


    The amount of electricity onboard also makes the Ford-class carriers ideal candidates to field laser and directed-energy weapons in the future, like rail guns and missile interceptors.


    Once launched, the Ford will be the largest warship in the world. It will be 1,092 feet long and displace upwards of 100,000 tons.




    This size will allow the carrier to house about 4,400 staff and personnel while also carrying more than 75 aircraft.


    The aircraft carrier Pre-Commissioning Unit (PCU) Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) gets underway beginning the ship's launch and transit to Newport News Shipyard pier 3 for the final stages of construction and testing.


    But for all the advances within the Ford-class carrier group, some have questioned the wisdom of continuing an astronomically expensive carrier-heavy naval strategy in a time when inter-state warfare is rare and nations like China continue to develop potentially carrier-killing long-range anti-ship cruise missiles.

    http://www.businessinsider.in/This-is-Americas-new-13-billion-warship/articleshow/47776394.cms
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    Post  George1 Sat Aug 22, 2015 5:10 am

    US Navy Starts Working on Next Nuclear Super Aircraft Carrier
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    Post  max steel Wed Nov 25, 2015 10:33 pm

    This is America's new $13 billion warship


    $13 billion and still not wired for network centric warfare tongue

    US Navy Aircraft Carriers Screen14


    Last edited by max steel on Fri Nov 27, 2015 2:47 am; edited 1 time in total
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    Post  max steel Sun Jan 10, 2016 5:53 pm

    CENTCOM, PACOM face flattop gaps this spring amid tensions

    Crises in the world's most volatile regions could spell longer deployments and more uncertainty for fleet sailors.

    The tense waters of Asia-Pacific or the Middle East could go for weeks or months without a U.S. aircraft carrier patrolling there this spring. But military planners are weighing whether this is the right moment to drop carrier presence, with strikes against Islamic State militants intensifying, rivalry between Saudi Arabia and Iran, and North Korea's hydrogen bomb test. The other options are to cut one carrier's needed maintenance short or extend a crew's deployment beyond the 7-month goal — both unsavory options for fleet bosses.

    At issue is a weeks-long period between when the Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group heads home from the Gulf in May and when the Dwight D. Eisenhower CSG deploys later that summer. That leaves the John C. Stennis CSG, which deploys in a few weeks, as the only flattop in either 5th or 7th Fleet.

    Another option is abruptly canceling the carrier Ronald Reagan's overhaul. The flattop recently arrived in Japan and needs maintenance before preparing for its patrol this summer.

    The Navy declined to comment specifically on the looming carrier gap — precise deployment dates are not releasable to the public — but Navy spokesman Lt. Cmdr. Tim Hawkins said that leadership was constantly reviewing deployments.

    "It's important to keep in mind that military leaders continually review force requirements and adjust global force management plans accordingly,” Hawkins said. “Naval forces are inherently flexible, agile and will continue to be where it matters, when it matters.”

    None of the options facing the fleet and combatant commanders are good, according to officials familiar with the internal deliberations.

    f the Navy pulls the carrier from U.S. Central Command in favor of dispatching Stennis to U.S. Pacific Command, it will be the second time within a year that the fight with ISIS will lack a flattop. The ultimate decision will rest with Gen. Joe Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs, and Defense Secretary Ash Carter.

    Fleet Forces Command was tasked in 2014 by the Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Jonathan Greenert to get deployments down to seven months from as long as 10 months, a goal the current CNO Adm. John Richardson has committed to. But in order to close the looming carrier gap, the Navy will either have to extend Truman’s seven-month deployment to eight months or more, or curtail Reagan’s maintenance period in Japan. Cutting carrier maintenance, especially after years of straining optempo, is a step fleet bosses have pushed to avoid.

    All CSG and amphibious ready group deployments under the new deployment rotation plan are scheduled for seven months, according to Fleet Forces Command spokesman Cmdr. John Gay.

    More challenges


    All of this comes at a time when the fleet is attempting to reset after years of hard use, including a two-year period between 2011 and 2013 when the Navy was required to keep two CSGs in 5th Fleet. The Optimized Fleet Response Plan was designed to give the Navy the time and space to fix its ships and give sailors, who have borne the brunt of the deployment uncertainty, time to recover.

    Work stoppages in the Navy-run public shipyards due to automatic spending cuts called sequestration also created maintenance delays, further reducing the readiness of the fleet.

    Extending deployments and returning to uncertainty would take a toll on sailors and their families, said one former FFC leader.

    “How much will the sailors and their families sustain in an all-volunteer force before you start harming retention,” said retired Adm. John Harvey, who commanded FFC until 2012. “You do a back-to back deployment like [carrier Eisenhower] did in 2012/2013, you pay for that.”

    Harvey said the issues the Navy is facing are the result of the meeting combatant commander requirements beyond its capacity, including the stretch from 2011 to 2013 when the Navy was required to have two carriers in the gulf and one in the Pacific at all times.

    “There is no easy way to take a 10-carrier force and operate it like you have 16,” Harvey said. “At some point the wheels will come off the cart.”

    And the fleet will continue to be a 10-carrier force for most of the decade. The fleet has been at 10 carriers since the carrier Enterprise was decommissioned in 2013 and stayed at that figure because of delays in the deployment date of carrier Gerald R. Ford, said Bryan Clark, a retired submarine officer and analyst with the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments.

    “It was supposed to be a 14-month gap at 10 carriers and now the gap will be almost 8 years with shock testing being added to the Ford’s pre-deployment preparations,” Clark said. In August, the Pentagon ordered the Navy to run shock trials on Ford before she deploys, further delaying the Navy’s newest ship.


    Still, Clark argues that the COCOMs should just make do with the reduced presence so as not to endanger the Navy's future ability to generate force.

    “There will likely be more security challenges going forward, rather than less, as China continues to pursue its ambitions, North Korea strives to get attention, Russia looks to shift attention from its domestic problems, and ISIS tries to regain the initiative,” Clark said.

    “The U.S. should take this time, although it may mean less carrier presence now, to get the fleet back in good shape to prepare for a decade in which the U.S. will need to reassert its role as an enforcer of global norms.”

    For many observers, the carrier gaps are the result of delays created primarily by ill-considered cuts to the Navy’s budget and force structure.

    “We are reaping the consequences of our actions,” said Bryan McGrath, a retired destroyer skipper and influential consultant with the FerryBridge Group. “We cut too deeply in the face of mounting requirements and we’re either going to have to figure this out on our own, or we are going to be forced into figuring it out by a calamity.”
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    Post  JohninMK Mon Mar 07, 2016 11:52 pm

    Interesting article on the vulnerability of US carriers to current and next generation Russian anti ship missiles. A good VT article.

    http://www.veteranstoday.com/2016/03/07/americas-newest-aircraft-carrier-a-15-billion-floating-graveyard/
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    Post  max steel Fri Apr 08, 2016 10:25 am

    Supercarrier Ford to join Navy fleet in September

    The most expensive warship ever built, the $12.9 billion aircraft carrier USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78), is expected to join the U.S. Navy's fleet in September, a Navy official says.

    Sean J. Stackley, the Navy's assistant secretary for acquisitions, gave the timetable for the 100,000-ton, 1,100-foot-long supercarrier in testimony prepared for the Senate Armed Services Committee on wednesday.

    As of March, the Ford, on which construction began in 2009, was 97% complete, Stackley said. He said the carrier is expected to begin sea trials in July and be delivered to the Navy by Newport News Shipbuilding two months later.

    The ship is named after the 38th president, who died in 2006. He served aboard the USS Monterey during World War II and was discharged from the Navy as a lieutenant commander.

    Stackley said the next carrier in the Ford class, the USS John F. Kennedy (CVN 79), is scheduled to be launched in 2020. That ship was 18% percent complete as of March, he said.

    The third Ford-class carrier, the USS Enterprise (CVN 80), is set to begin construction in 2018, Stackley said.

    The timetable for the Navy's biggest warships came as Stackley gave lawmakers the Navy's budget request for the next five years. The service wants to spend $81.3 billion over that period to build 38 warships, he said.

    Included in that request are the first replacement for the aging Ohio-class ballistic missile submarines, nine Virginia-class attack submarines, 10 Arleigh Burke-class destroyers and smaller numbers of other surface ships.

    The goal of the building plan is to have a Navy battle force of 308 ships by 2021, according to Stackley's testimony.


    3 new Aircraft Carriers Suspect
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    Post  max steel Thu Apr 14, 2016 12:27 am

    The Most Expensive Warship Ever Built Might Already Be Close to Obsolete


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