Major Powers Investing in New Super Aircraft Carriers

By: | April 6th, 2015

IndustryTap has reported on the UK’s new $8.3 billion aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth, the United State’s USS Gerald R. Ford that was built for $14 billion, and a Sunken Aircraft Carrier reef that pumps $92 million a year into the Florida economy. Recent reports suggest the trend toward large navy fleets isn’t over.

There are two main purposes for an aircraft carrier. First, to project air power in a location where no land bases exist, and second, to protect a fleet or fleets from land or carrier-based aircraft, including drones. The major powers of the world are increasingly investing in aircraft carriers to protect themselves from airborne attacks. Countries without huge aircraft carriers are at a disadvantage and can be easily intimidated.

In fact, Russia, China, India, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States are all planning on building new aircraft carriers between now and 2030. Here are some of the facts surrounding these developments:

  • The United Kingdom’s budget for two new large aircraft carriers to be built by 2025 is 6 billion British pounds. The UK launched its latest aircraft carrier, the HMS Queen Elizabeth, in 2014.
  • Russia is first planning on building a dozen new guided missile destroyers. After these are completed, Russia will begin construction on its first aircraft carrier, which may not begin until 2025. Russia estimates its first aircraft carrier will take 8 to 10 years to build.
  • The location of the construction of Russia’s aircraft carrier is up in the air as the Nikolaev shipyard is now located in Ukraine. Russia’s first aircraft carrier is expected to have a displacement of from 40-60,000 tons. Before Russia can build its first aircraft carrier it needs to modernize existing shipyards, which will be a challenging and expensive proposition.
  • The USS Enterprise, scheduled for completion in 2025, will be the ninth ship and the third aircraft carrier to bear the name Enterprise. The displacement of the USS Enterprise will be over 100,000 tons.
  • India will become the third nation after the United States and France to operate a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, the INS Vishal, pictured below. At 65,000 tons, it will be outfitted with the latest fighter jets and choppers.
  • China initially considered buying its first aircraft carrier off the shelf but in the end opted to build its own. China will be the fourth nation to build a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier. China has reported several aircraft carriers under construction at a shipyard in Shanghai, which is enclosed to prevent observation. China’s first aircraft carrier is expected to have a displacement of 78,000 tons.

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David Russell Schilling

David enjoys writing about high technology and its potential to make life better for all who inhabit planet earth.

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