Issue 60  
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Magazine News
09.02.2018 10:12

$20bn Ship

Today, the world’s largest operational aircraft carriers undoubtedly belong to the Nimitz and Theodore Roosevelt Class ships. Although there are similarities between USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN78), which is currently at sea and about to enter into service, and USS Nimitz (CVN68), in fact these are two very different classes – a fact known only to a small number of people.

 

Comparing these two classes bears great importance as regards battle management and crisis management capabilities.

First of all, it is required to remember the USS Enterprise (CVN65) and explain the importance of nuclear propulsion system. Modern aircraft carriers are often ideal ships to organise a fleet or task group. Based on Second World War experience Western armies, which acknowledged that aircraft carriers are the most determining weapon systems at the sea, in the air and on the land, developed effective doctrines against the Eastern Bloc. Nevertheless, aircraft carriers were limited in number; thus, in terms of efficiency, priority in the 1950s rested with their long-term cruise without stopovers. For this priority, nuclear propulsion systems were preferred as the ultimate solution. In this vein, the USS Enterprise became a pioneer and remained in service until 2012. As for Nimitz Class aircraft carriers, their production commenced in 1971 based on accumulation of knowledge through feedback gained from the USS Enterprise. They would later become one of the prominent weapons in the future.

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