In the United States Navy, the ten ships of the Nimitz-class are its major aircraft carriers. The Gerald R. Ford-class carriers, entering construction, will supplement them. They followed the one-of-a-kind USS Enterprise (CVN-65), built in 1961, though several conventionally powered carriers entered service thereafter. By now, all of the conventionally powered aircraft carriers of the U.S. Navy have been decommissioned, leaving only nuclear-powered carriers for the U.S.
This class of aircraft carriers is named after its lead ship, the USS Nimitz. That ship, in turn, memorializes Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz.
- USS Nimitz (CVN 68)
- USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69)
- USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70)
- USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71)
- USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72)
- USS George Washington (CVN 73)
- USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74)
- USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75)
- USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76)
- USS George H.W. Bush (CVN 77)
CVN 77, USS George H.W. Bush, is intended as a transition between the Nimitz and Ford classes. New features include:
- Passive Jet Blast Deflector: Redesigns and new materials mean reduced maintenance costs.
- Redesigned island: Improve flight deck access and reduce signature and electronic self-interference.
- Other Signature Reduction: Curved flight deck edges, enclosed antenna farms, smaller islands and internal aircraft elevators add up to maximum stealth.
- Aircraft Pit Stop: Semi-automated refueling and servicing in a new configuration and deck location provides faster, more efficient airwing pit stops and requires fewer people.
- Redesigned Hangar Deck: New designs reduce clutter.
- Manpower Reductions: Technology, space rearrangement, operational procedure changes, advanced sensor technologies and condition-based maintenance systems all allow for a smaller, specially-trained crew. Material movement devices, semi-autonomous, gravity compensated weapons handling devices, damage control automation systems and components will reduce the ship's crew and costs.
- Reconfigurable Spaces: Life-of-the-ship modular construction designs provide flexibility and reduce cost.
- Expanded Bandwidth: More onboard (Local area network_ and offboard capability gives the ship a communications edge.
- Zonal Electrical Distribution Systems: Isolate the potential for problems and minimizes the effect on the rest of the ship; crew laptops and other personal electronics, on- and off-duty, have greatly increased electrical demand
- Builder: Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding., Newport News, VA.
- First Date Deployed: May 3, 1975 (USS Nimitz)
- Propulsion: Two nuclear reactors, four shafts
- Length: 1,092 feet (332.85 meters)
- Beam: 134 feet (40.84 meters)
- Flight Deck Width: 252 feet (76.8 meters)
- Displacement: Approximately 97,000 tons (87,996.9 metric tons) full load
- Speed: 30+ knots (34.5+ miles per hour)
- Ship's Company: 3,200
- Air Wing: 2,480.
- Armament: Multiple NATO Sea Sparrow, Phalanx close-in weapons system, and RIM-116 Rolling Airframe Missile (RAM) mounts.
- Aircraft: Approximately 60+.
- AN/SPS-48E : Add brief definition or description 3-D
- AN/SPS-49(V)5 : A long-range air search radar, part of the AEGIS battle management system only on Ticonderoga-class cruisers, not Burke-class destroyers; non-AEGIS use on Canadian Halifax-class frigates
- AN/SPS-67 : Add brief definition or description surface search
- AN/SLQ-25 : Add brief definition or description
- AN/SLQ-32(V) : Add brief definition or description
Typical air wing
- 4 squadrons of F-18 Hornet and F-18 Super Hornet; some to be replaced by F-35C Lightning II.
- Some F-18 are equipped for air refueling
- Airborne early warning squadron flying E-2 Hawkeye
- Helicopter squadron: these have typically been SH-60F Oceanhawks, but will be replaced with a next generation of MH-60S Knighthawk utility and mine countermeasures with MH-60R Seahawks for antisubmarine work
- Electronic warfare detachment flying EA-6B Prowlers; to be replaced by EF-18 Growler; probably some unmanned aerial vehicle
- Carrier onboard delivery aircraft making trips from shore