An aircraft carrier is a warship that serves as an open sea air base, equipped with facilities such as transporting, deploying, maintaining aircraft. Typically, it allows a navy to use air power worldwide to carry out aircraft operations without being dependent on local bases. In this sense, it is the most important ship of a fleet. Aircraft carriers have evolved since the early twentieth century, from wooden ships used to distribute balloons to nuclear-powered warships carrying a large number of fighters, strike aircraft, helicopters and other types of aircraft.
With its diplomatic and tactical power, mobility, autonomy and variety of vehicles, the aircraft carrier is often the center of modern war fleets. Tactically or strategically, it replaced the battleship as the flagship of a fleet. One of its major advantages is that it does not interfere with any regional sovereignty by sailing in international waters. Thus, it reduces the risk of diplomatic problems with third-party countries while the operation is taking place. Of course, it reduces the arrival time of aircraft to the operation area. Therefore, the duration of the aircraft in the war zone increases.
Aircraft Carrier History
Planes became increasingly important shortly after the Wright brothers discovered manned flight in the 1900s. Like any new combat device, airplanes did not receive the importance they deserved in the beginning. After their usefulness has been proven, they have gained more and more importance.
However, the fact that the runways required for the landing and taking off of the aircraft were only on land restricted their use. Airplanes were also a threat to ships. Aircraft carriers were invented both to carry aircraft and to use them against enemy ships.
During World War I
The first aircraft carrier studies date back to the First World War. Eugene Ely, who landed on the USS Pennsylvania, which was transformed into an aircraft carrier after various changes, thus realized an innovation and went down in history (November 1910).
However, the first aircraft carrier title was given to HMS Ark Royal. Originally a merchant ship, this ship has undergone various changes, as in USS Pennsylvania, and a runway has been added on which aircraft can land and take off.
Aircraft Carrier – Today
Today, aircraft carriers have developed in direct proportion to technology, and they continue to dominate the seas with the names of Super Aircraft Carriers. Along with the United States of America, 9 countries today have aircraft carriers of various sizes. These countries are United States (11), Italy (2), Russia (1), Thailand (1), France (1), Spain (1), India (1), Brazil (1), China (1).
In addition, the UK planned to start using 2 aircraft carriers in 2020.
The United States has deployed many aircraft carrier fleets in various seas around the world.
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