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The United States employs the largest and most powerful aircraft carrier fleet in the world, composed largely of Nimitz-class ships of more than 100,000 tons and will soon add advanced ships of the Ford class to the operational mix. These ships provide the nation with its most powerful force projection capabilities and, together with the attack groups that accompany them, each represents a firepower greater than that of many entire nations.
The point is that these ships are not the only vessels in Uncle Sam’s inventory capable of launching advanced fighters. The United States has a fleet of 11 aircraft carriers, because the Nimitz and Ford class ships are the only ones that meet the very specific definition of aircraft carriers according to the law of the United States. By the standards of other nations, the United States actually has between 19 and 24 aircraft, according to the definition you want to accept.
The other carriers who do not talk often do not meet the requirements to be considered carriers according to the law of the United States for good reason: Congress has legally ordered the Navy of the United States to maintain a fleet of 11 aircraft carriers. If the legal definition of an aircraft carrier were extended to include any vessel that launched an airplane, it would be too easy to eradicate the budget of the Navy aircraft carrier in difficult times. By establishing a legal definition of airline that excludes amphibious assault ships and similar flat tops, the Navy made sure that it will never be pressured to trade.the super aircraft carrier with nuclear propulsion by diesel boats much less capable and capable of launching aircraft.
The “real carriers” of the United States offer much more than a floating airstrip for launching, including a wide range of systems designed specifically to allow these massive ships to launch a variety of offensive and defensive combat operations that can actually be seen as a unique combat system. This system uses specialized aeronautical equipment and aircraft to maximize the aircraft carrier’s strength projection capabilities, from airborne early warning aircraft to electronic warfare platforms and missile defense capabilities. US aircraft carriers are autonomous systems built around air superiority and long-term “blue water” operations.
For the less demanding eye, with 844 feet in length and 45,000 tons, the USS America will surely look like an aircraft carrier. The same happens with the USS Wasp , with 843 feet and around 40,500 tons. While these ships may be dwarfed by their Nimitz and Ford class cousins, they are not really much smaller than ships like the newest Royal Navy carrier, the HMS Queen Elizabeth , which is 920 feet long and displaces approximately more than 20,000 tons. The USS America and the USS Wasp , both the homonyms of their respective vessel classes, were not built to do all the things an aircraft carrier can do, but they can launch raids on the most advanced combat platform in the world, the F-35 .
The aforementioned USS Wasp , in fact, is currently implemented in the Pacific with ten F-35B on board . These vertical takeoff and landing marches of the Joint Strike Fighter are operated by the United States Marine Corps from the decks of these amphibious assault ships, making them perhaps the most powerful “non-carrier” aircraft carriers in combat. of the planet.
In a large-scale conflict, these smaller vessels could be incredibly valuable, as the Nimitz and Ford class ships prove to be the chosen targets for anti-aircraft missiles and coastal defenses. While these vessels lack a large amount of the capacity assigned by a full-blown carrier attack group, they would offer a smaller and faster target with comparable combat capabilities in certain specific circumstances. With the support of other vessels in the fleet and even fighters deployed from “real” carriers in other locations, that capacity could increase dramatically.
The super carriers of the United States can get all the glory in the press, but if a fight starts in the Pacific, it could be that they are amphibious assault ships, traditionally supported by the projection of the ground force, that could shine as a method powerful delivery for fighters like the F-35. We may not call them carriers, but the targets turned into rubble by the F-35B of the Marine Corps will probably not be so demanding.
Source: Noticias de Israel