Monday, May 16, 2016

US Aircraft Carriers

The Nimitz-class supercarriers are a class of ten nuclear-powered aircraft carriers in service with the United States Navy. With an overall length of 1,092 ft (333 m) and full-load displacement of over 100,000 long tons, they have been the largest warships built and in service, although they are being eclipsed by the upcoming Gerald R. Ford-class aircraft carriers.

The carriers use two A4W pressurized water reactors which drive four propeller shafts and can produce a maximum speed of over 30 knots (56 km/h) and maximum power of around 260,000 shp (190 MW). The ships are capable of operating for over 20 years without refueling and are predicted to have a service life of over 50 years. They are numbered with consecutive hull numbers between CVN-68 and CVN-77

The Second Gerald R. Ford-class carrier,John F. Kennedy
Carriers of the Ford class will incorporate design features including: Advanced arresting gear. Automation, which reduces crew requirements by several hundred. The updated RIM-162 Evolved Sea Sparrow missile system. AN/SPY-3 dual-band radar (DBR). An Electromagnetic Aircraft Launch System (EMALS) in place of traditional steam catapults for launching aircraft. A new nuclear reactor design (the A1B reactor) for greater power generation. Stealth features to help reduce Radar cross-section. The ability to carry up to 90 aircraft.

Ford-class carriers carry 2,600 sailors, about 600 fewer than a Nimitz-class flattop.
A 2009 report said that Ford would cost $14 billion including research and development, and the actual cost of the carrier itself would be $9 billion.

The life-cycle cost per operating day of a carrier strike group (including aircraft) was estimated at $6.5 million.
The USS Gerald R. Ford, CVN-78, was launched on 27 May 2011.
The USS John F. Kennedy, CVN-79, is scheduled to be launched in 2018. CVN-80 is to be called USS Enterprise and will be the ninth U.S. Navy ship to bear this name. It will be launched in 2023.