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Thread: Carrier Battle Group Essay

  1. #1
    Military Professional
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    09 Aug 03

    Carrier Battle Group Essay

    This is a little essay Im working on tracing USN surface combatant and carrier battlegroup evolution.

    (Sorry diagram wont paste. See link below.)

    The above is a typical USN tactical formation circa 1940. When battleships were still the primary offensive weapon. It was an enormus battlegroup consisting of Battleships, a carrier, cruisers, destroyers and destroyer minelayers.

    In December 1941 on the eve of the start of WWII the Enterprise (CV-6) battlegroup consisted of three cruisers and a nine destroyer DESRON.

    CV Enterprise
    CA Salt Lake City, Northampton, Chester

    DD DesRon6 Balch/SF
    DesDiv11: Gridley, Craven, McCall, Maury
    DesDiv12: Dunlap. Fanning, Benham, Ellet

    As the #s in the chart below show those #'s per carrier could not be sustained during WWII.

    A typical carrier battlegroup in 1944 consisted of two large Essex class carriers and one small Independence class carrier in addition to CRUDIV of four cruisers(CA,CL,CLAA) and a DESRON of nine destroyers.

    CV USS Enterprise - Capt. M.B. Gardner
    Air Group 10 - 32 F6F, 30 SBD, 16 TBF; 4 F4U (night fighters)
    CV USS Yorktown - Capt. R.E. Jennings
    Air Group 5 - 37 F6F, 36 SBD, 18 TBF; 4 F6F (night fighters)
    CVL USS Belleau Wood - Capt. A.M. Pride
    Air Group 24 - 24 F6F, 8 TBF

    Crudiv 13
    R. Adm. L.T. DuBose

    CL USS Santa Fe - Capt. J. Wright
    CL USS Mobile - Capt. C.J. Wheeler
    CL USS Biloxi - Capt. D.M. McGurl
    CLAA USS Oakland - Capt. W.K. Phillips

    Desron 50
    Capt. S.R. Clark

    DD USS C.K. Bronson - Lt. Cdr. J.C. McGoughran
    DD USS Cotten - Cdr. F.T. Sloat
    DD USS Dortch - Cdr. R.C. Young
    DD USS Gatling - Cdr. A.F. Richardson
    DD USS Healey - Cdr. J.C. Atkeson
    DD USS Cogswell - Cdr. H.T. Deuterman
    DD USS Caperton - Cdr. W.J. Miller
    DD USS Ingersoll - Cdr. A.C. Veasey
    DD USS Knapp - Cdr. F. Virden

    We also can see the drastic drawdown from VJ day to the start of the Korean War on 25June 1950.

    Notice the USN appears to have gone to great lengths to preserve the destroyer force.

    Type 8/14/45* 6/30/46 6/30/47 6/30/48 6/30/49 6/30/50
    Battleships 23 10 4 2 1 1
    Carriers, Fleet 28 15 14 13 11 11
    Carriers, Escort 71 10 8 7 7 4
    Cruisers 72 36 32 32 18 13
    Destroyers 377 145 138 134 143 137
    Frigates 361 35 24 12 12 10
    Submarines 232 85 80 74 79 72
    SSBNs - - - - - -
    Command Ships - - - - - -
    Mine Warfare 586 112 55 54 52 56
    Patrol 1204 119 74 50 50 33
    Amphibious 2547 275 107 86 60 79
    Auxiliary 1267 406 306 273 257 218
    Surface Warships 833 226 198 180 174 161
    Total Active 6768 1248 842 737 690 634

    On the eve of the Korean War a typical carrier battlegroup looked like this:


    Task Group 77.1. Support Group. Captain Edward L. *****ard, USN.

    Rochester (CA-124)
    (Fleet Flagship) 1 Heavy Cruiser.

    Task Group 77.2. Screening Group. Captain Charles W. Parker, USN

    Destroyer Division 31 [ less Keyes and Hollister plus Radford and Fletcher]:
    Shelton (DD-790), Eversole (DD-789), Radford (DD-446), Fletcher (DD-445) 4 Destroyers

    Destroyer Division 32:
    Maddox (DD-731), Samuel L. Moore (DD-747), Brush (DD-745), Taussig (DD-746) 4 Destroyer

    Task Group 77.4. Carrier Group. Rear Admiral John. M. Hoskins.
    Valley Forge (CV-45) (Flagship)

    The chart below shows the build-up of the fleet in the 1950s. The impetus of course being the Korean war.

    Notice the Battlship, cruiser and escort carrier categories took hits with the end of the war in July 1953.

    Eight ship DESRON's had become the norm although as few as six and as many as thirteen ship were sometimes assigned.

    Type 6/30/51 6/30/52 6/30/53 6/30/54 6/30/55 6/30/56 6/30/57
    Battleships 3 4 4 4 3 3 2
    Carriers, Fleet 17 19 19 20 21 22 22
    Carriers, Escort 9 10 10 7 3 2 -
    Cruisers 15 19 19 18 17 16 16
    Destroyers 206 243 247 247 249 250 253
    Frigates 38 56 56 57 64 70 84
    Submarines 83 104 108 108 108 108 113
    SSG/SSBNs 1 1 2 2 1 2 2
    Command Ships - - - - - 1 1
    Mine Warfare 91 114 121 117 112 113 104
    Patrol 40 29 23 22 15 11 12
    Amphibious 208 189 226 223 175 139 134
    Auxiliary 269 309 287 288 262 236 224
    Surface Warships 262 322 326 326 333 339 355
    Total Active 980 1097 1122 1113 1030 973 967

    Type 6/30/58 6/30/59 6/30/60 6/30/61 6/30/62 6/30/63 6/30/64
    Battleships - - - - - - -
    Carriers 24 23 23 24 26 24 24
    Cruisers 15 12 13 12 13 18 24
    Destroyers 245 237 226 223 240 222 215
    Frigates 71 61 41 41 68 40 40
    Submarines 109 109 106 105 104 102 102
    SSG/SSBNs 2 4 7 10 14 17 23
    Command Ships 1 1 1 1 1 2 2
    Mine Warfare 77 82 81 83 84 84 84
    Patrol 12 6 4 4 2 - -
    Amphibious 121 120 113 110 130 132 133
    Auxiliary 213 205 197 206 218 216 212
    Surface Warships 331 310 280 276 321 280 279
    Total Active 890 860 812 819 900 857 859

    In the late 50's the WWII built DE's began to be retired again in great #'s. The decommissioning of the escort carriers made them less useful. But their slow speed which had seen their almost comlete demise by 1950 was again seen as a liability for ASW work along with general obsolescence. By the end of 1960 only 24 remained and twenty-two of these had been reconfigured as radar-pickets during the mid-50's to man the DEW line (Distant Early Warning).

    This time also saw the decommissiong of 33 (in addition to six decommissioned shortly after the end of the Korean War 1953-1954) of the 100 Fletcher class destroyers in-commission during the Korean War.

    Thirteen DE's of the Dealey class completed from 1954-1958. Most of the nine Atlantic fleet units escorted the USS Wasp CVS-18 on a MED cruise mid- 1958. They were not conceived originally for this task but the DE category were now being seen as integral battlegroup participants.

    Beginning with the Garcia/Brooke class and continuing with the Knox and later Oliver Hazard Perry classes this was the case as replacements for the mass of WWII destroyers that even with FRAM refits were nominally programmed to be retired five to eight years after completion. Although many served for much longer.

    The FRAM (Fleet Rehabilitation and Modernization) beginning in 1959 and lasting through 1965 saw 33 Sumner class and 95 Gearing class destroyers become essentially fast ASW frigates. With the removal of anti-surface torpedos and 3" AA guns all that remained for those roles were their 5" dual purpose guns.

    Also from the late 50's through the mid-60's the USN built AAW guided-missle destroyers and frigates(redesignated cruisers or destroyers depending on the class in 1975. This redesignation is reflected in the chart above beginning in 1963.). There were also a number of destroyer and cruiser conversions to AAW guided-missle ships.

    So by 1970 a carrier battle was nominally made up of four AAW ships and eight destroyers or destroyer escorts(redesignated frigates in 1975).

    The USN was very unhappy with the Knox class frigates and the follow-on class of Oliver Hazard Perry class.

    So while the ships were actually serving in carrier battlegroups in official documents they were relegated to Amphibious Task Groups, Underway Replenishment Groups and Convoy duty.

    See link below for the 1979 requirement table on page 39.:

    The requirements were updated in 1982. See USNI Proceedings May 1985 for the chart on page 185.

    There is one on the internet I think but cant find the link.

    Nominal Composition per carrier:

    2 Guided missle cruisers
    2 Guided missle destroyers
    2 Destroyers(DD 963 class)

    In the January 1988 USNI Proceedings Captain (then Commander)George Galdorisi produced a chart on page 106:

    Nominal Carrier Battle Group Composition
    1 Carrier
    2 Guided missle cruisers
    2 Guided missle destroyers
    2 Destroyers (DD963s)
    4-6 Frigates (FF-1052s)/Guded missle Frigates (FFG-7s)
    1-2 Nuclear-powered attack submarines (direct support)
    1 Fast combat support ships/oilers

    Notice he includes the frigates in the nominal composition whereas the official USN compositions do not.

    The early decommissioning of the 1950's built DL Mitscher class( 2 1969 and 2 1978) and DD Forrest Sherman class(18 1982-1983) added to the pressure to provide adequate escorts for all the USN's combat formations.

    Nonetheless Knox and Oliver Hazard Perry class frigates began entering non-deploying NRF(Naval Reserve Force) service, 13 and 16 respectively from 1982 through 1991.

    From 1988 through 1992 sixteen Garcia/Brooke FF's, nine Coontz class DDG's, twenty-two CF Adams class DDG's and thirty Knox class were decommissioned.

    In late 1992 the nominal carrier battle group consisted of :

    1 Carrier
    4 Guided missle cruisers/Guided missle destroyers
    4 Spruance class destroyers
    4 OH Perry class frigates
    2 SSN
    1 Combat Support Ship

    There were twelve carrier battle groups requiring 144 escorts if all were up to strength this wasnt the case.*

    *See Norman Polmar's Ships and Aircraft of the U.S. Fleet 1993 for exact composition of the carrier battlegroups.

    There were 49 cruisers(One cruiser, Belknap, was the 6th fleet flagship and is not included) and 7 guided missle destroyers more than enough to suffice by eight. But only 31 Spruance class destroyers coming up 17 short. Of the 67 frigates only 35(13 short) were assigned to the carrier battlegroups all OH Perry class.

    Sixteen OH Perry class along with eight Knox class were in NRF service. Plus eight other Knox class scheduled to be in 1993. So there were enough ships in-service but barely.

    But in late 1993 in another cost-cutting move 18 CG's of the Leahy/Belknap class began decommissioning all but one gone by the end of September 1994.

    The surviving Knox class frigates all left service by the end of June 1994.

    In addition between 1994-1999 all seven of the nuclear powered cruisers left service.

    OH Perry class frigates also began to leave service in 1994.

    In the mid-1990's the OH Perry class fulfilled in part the guided missle destroyer/destroyer role for which they were ill-equipped. As enough A Burkes were not yet in service.

    The USN attempted to mitigate this by reducing the carrier battlegroups to six ships but soon reverted to eight as sufficient A Burke class guided missle destroyers entered service.

    Selected CVBG compositions of the mid-1990s. The Atlantic Fleet on page 78 and the Pacific Fleet on page 79:

    Another CVBG:

    May 1996-November 1996
    The Carl Vinson Task Group includes the guided missile
    cruisers USS Arkansas (CGN 41), USS California (CGN 36) and USS Shiloh (CG 67), fast combat support ship USS Camden(AOE 2), guided missile frigate USS Crommelin (FFG 37) and attack submarines USS Jefferson City (SSN 759) and USS Hawkbill (SSN 666).

    In FY 1996 there was a reorganization of the Pacific and Atlantic Fleets:

    Pacific Fleet reorganization underway
    WASHINGTON (NNS) -- (This is the second of a two-part series highlighting the reorganization of the Atlantic and Pacific

    The Pacific Fleet's surface ships are being reorganized
    into six core battle groups and eight destroyer squadrons.

    The reorganization is scheduled to be completed by Oct. 1, withhomeport changes completed within the next year.

    Permanent core battle groups will include a battle group commander, aircraftcarrier, carrier air wing and at least two cruisers.

    While most of the reorganization will be accomplished by
    realigning existing shore commands and the staffs of operational commanders, the following changes will apply:

    San Diego:
    - A regional support organization will be established to cover
    administrative and maintenance support for ships which do not
    deploy as port of their core battle group.

    - Commander Destroyer Readiness Squadrons 13 and 33 will be disestablished, with the billets reassigned to new or existing
    commands in San Diego.

    Pearl Harbor:
    - Commander Destroyer Squadron 5 will shift homeport from San Diego to Pearl Harbor.

    - Commander Naval Surface Group Middle Pacific will be the Immediate Superior In Charge (ISIC) for all non- cruiser/destroyer ships in Pearl Harbor.

    Everett, Wash.:
    - Commander Destroyer Squadron 9 has moved from San Diego to Everett.

    - Commander Logistics Group One will move to Everett and serve as Commander Naval Surface Group Pacific Northwest while maintaining ISIC responsibilities for logistics ships.

    Once the transition period is complete, the following ship
    assignments will apply:

    - Commander Cruiser-Destroyer Group One/USS Constellation
    Battle Group: USS Lake Erie and USS Chosin.

    - Commander Cruiser-Destroyer Group Five/USS Kitty Hawk Battle Group: USS Cowpens and USS Antietam.

    - Commander Cruiser-Destroyer Group Three/USS Carl Vinson
    Battle Group: USS Shiloh, USS California and USS Arkansas.

    - Commander Carrier Group Seven/USS Nimitz Battle Group: USS Port Royal and USS Lake Champlain.

    - Commander Carrier Group Three/USS Abraham Lincoln Battle
    Group: USS Princeton and USS Chancellorsville.

    - Commander Carrier Group Five/USS Independence Battle Group: USS Bunker Hill and USS Mobile Bay.

    - Destroyer Squadron 1(all NRF except Reid): USS Copeland, USS George Philip, USS John A. Moore, USS Lewis B. Puller, USS Mahlon S. Tisdale, USS Sides, USS Wadsworth and USS Reid.

    - Destroyer Squadron 5: USS Cushing, USS John S. McCain, USS Ingersoll, USS Crommelin and USS Reuben James.

    - Destroyer Squadron 7: USS Elliot, USS Curtis Wilbur, USS
    Merrill, USS John Paul Jones and USS Harry Hill.

    - Destroyer Squadron 9: USS Paul F. Foster, USS David R. Ray, USS Callaghan, USS Chandler, USS Ford and USS Ingraham.

    - Destroyer Squadron 15: USS Fife, USS Hewitt, USS O'Brien,
    USS Curts, USS McClusky, USS Rodney M. Davis and USS Thatch.

    - Destroyer Squadron 21: USS Kinkaid, USS Stethem, USS
    Benfold, USS Valley Forge, USS Jarrett and USS Rentz.

    - Destroyer Squadron 23: USS Oldendorf, USS John Young, USS Fitzgerald, USS Vincennes, USS Garry and USS Vandegrift.

    - Destroyer Squadron 31: USS Fletcher, USS Leftwich, USS
    Russell and USS Paul Hamilton.

    NORFOLK, Va. (NNS) -- The Atlantic Fleet's surface combatant
    ships are being reorganized into six core battle groups, nine
    destroyer squadrons and a new Western Hemisphere Group.

    The reorganization will be phased in over the summer and take effect Aug. 31, with homeport shifts occurring through 1998.

    The plan focuses on developing squadron integrity, increasing
    Sailors' time in homeport, economizing training, and providing a
    more efficient organization to meet Western Hemisphere

    The greatest savings and improvements in efficiency are
    expected to come from tailoring intermediate and advanced training to the missions the ships will perform.

    All ships will still complete the basic training phase, but for some the overall training time could be cut between 20 and 44 days.

    The change in training strategy should bring about 17 percent less time at sea between deployments for most cruisers, destroyers and frigates.

    Once reorganization is completed, two cruisers will be
    permanently assigned to each carrier battle group. At the start of the intermediate training phase, a four-ship destroyer squadron, two submarines and a replenishment ship will join the core group to establish the battle group.

    Nine destroyer squadrons will be used to support the six
    carrier battle groups, as well as supporting commitments with the Middle East Force, NATO's Standing Naval Force and
    other required operations.

    The squadrons will be assigned to the battle groups on a rotational basis, depending on where they are in their maintenance and deployment cycles.

    With minimal homeport changes, ships will be phased into their new squadrons upon completion of their current deployment cycle.

    The ships in the Western Hemisphere Group will be homeported
    in Mayport, Fla., and Pascagoula, Miss.

    These ships will be tasked primarily with supporting operations in the Caribbean and South America.

    USS Ticonderoga and USS Yorktown will move to Pascagoula
    in 1996. USS Thomas S. Gates will join them in FY98.

    Four ships will move to Mayport; USS Robert G. Bradley (FY97), USS Conolly (1996-97), USS Scott (1997) and USS Kidd (1998) , to join USS Moosbrugger, USS Dewert, USS McInerney, USS Boone, USS Doyle, USS Aubrey Fitch and USS Stark.

    When the transition period is complete, the following ship
    assignments will apply:

    - Commander Cruiser-Destroyer Group Two/George Washington
    Battle Group: USS South Carolina and USS Normandy.

    - Commander Carrier Group Two/John C. Stennis Joint Task
    Group: USS San Jacinto and USS Monterey. Monterey is scheduled to join the group in 1996-97.

    - Commander Carrier Group Six/John F. Kennedy/America Joint
    Task Group: USS Vicksburg, USS Hue City and USS Thomas. S. Gates until Gates transfers to the Western Hemisphere Group in June 1998.

    - Commander Cruiser-Destroyer Group Eight/Eisenhower Joint
    Task Group: USS Anzio and USS Cape St. George.

    - Commander Carrier Group Eight/Theodore Roosevelt Joint Task Group: USS Leyte Gulf, USS Vella Gulf and USS Mississippi. Mississippi is scheduled for decommissioning during FY97.

    - Commander Cruiser-Destroyer Group Twelve/Enterprise Joint
    Task Group: USS Philippine Sea and USS Gettysburg.

    Destroyer squadron assignments under the reorganization
    require no ship homeport changes.

    Norfolk-based Destroyer Squadrons 2, 18, 20, 22, 26, 28 and 32; and Mayport-based Destroyer Squadrons 14 and 24 each will have four ships assigned permanently as follows:

    - Destroyer Squadron 2: USS Arleigh Burke, USS Deyo, USS
    Stump and USS Kauffman.

    - Destroyer Squadron 14: USS John Rodgers, USS Obannon, USS Underwood, and USS Carney in FY96.

    - Destroyer Squadron 18: USS Stout, USS Nicholson, USS Thorn and USS Nicholas.

    - Destroyer Squadron 20: USS Mitscher, USS Briscoe, USS
    Klakring, USS Robert G. Bradley until transfer to Western
    Hemisphere Group in August 1997, and USS Gonzalez in FY96.

    - Destroyer Squadron 22: USS Laboon, USS Caron, USS Simpson, and USS Cole in FY96.

    - Destroyer Squadron 24: USS Spruance, USS John Hancock, USS Taylor, and USS The Sullivans in FY97.

    - Destroyer Squadron 26: USS Barry, USS Arthur W. Radford,
    USS Comte de Grasse and USS Samuel B. Roberts.

    - Destroyer Squadron 28: USS Peterson, USS Elrod, USS
    Halyburton, and USS Ross in FY97.

    - Destroyer Squadron 32: USS Ramage, USS Hayler, USS Hawes and USS Carr.

    Note: DESRON 1 in the Pacific fleet was analogous to DESRON 6 of the Western Hemisphere group in the Atlantic Fleet.

    Which was left out of the above reorganization news listing DESRON 6 contained seven NRF ships. Two other active ships that were shortly to be decommissioned were also left out:

    USS Antrim
    USS Clark
    USS Estocin
    USS Fahrion
    USS Flately
    USS OH Perry
    USS SE Morison

    USS Gallery
    USS J Williams

    In 1998-1999 the four Kidd class DDG's and seven Spruance class DD's prematurely decommissioned.

    In 1998 there was another reorganization the Pacific fleet lost one DESRON and the Atlantic fleet lost three. The ships from those DESRONs were reassigned to the remaining DESRONs

    Nominal make-up of a carrier battlegroup:

    2 Ticonderoga class guided-muissle cruisers
    2 A Burke class guided missle destroyers
    2 Spruance class destroyers
    2 OH Perry class frigates

    Note: The author has hard copies of the Atlantic Fleet DESRON's make-up in October of 1998 and 1999.

    At the beginning of 2000 the surface fleet consisted of:

    27 Ticonderoga class cruisers
    28 A Burke I/II destroyers
    24 Spruance class destroyers
    36 OH Perry class

    2000-2005 saw the decommissioing of the remaining Spruance class destroyers and more OH Perry class frigates.

    In 2002 a decision was made to remove the MK 13 launcher for firing Standard/Harpoon missles from the OH Perry class frigates. This in effect made them essentially mini-helo carriers or large patrol frigates depending on your perspective

    In 2002 the USN decided to break up the carrier battlegroups. Leaving three escorts with the carrier, adding three escorts to amphibious ready groups and forming three ship surface action groups.

    The were renamed Carrier Strike Groups(CSG), Expeditioary Strike Groups(ESG) and Surface Strike Groups(SSG) respectively.

    These separate and distinct formations can be brought together to form a Naval Expeditionary Force(NEF).

    The NEF resembling nothing so much as a the previous combined Carrier Battle Group/Amphibious Ready Group/Surface Action Group formations that were assembled under the umbrella of the Commander, Carrier Battle Group staff from the mid-1990's to early in this decade.

    The main difference is that the escorts assigned to the ARG and SAG have been formalized rather than being ad hoc.

    Nominal compositions:

    12 CSG:
    1 Ticonderoga class cruiser
    1 A Burke I/II* destroyer
    1 A Burke IIA destoyer

    12 ESG:
    1 Ticonderoga class cruiser
    1 A Burke class destroyer
    1 OH Perry class frigate(Eventually to be replaced by DD(X))

    9 SSG:
    3 A Burke class destroyers

    *The A Burke I/II destroyers could operate with LAMPs III helicopters including refueling and rearming but have no hanger.

    The USN does not yet have enough A. Burke class destroyers to make this happen.

    Although with 22 Ticonderoga class cruisers*, 47 A Burke destroyers** and 30 OH Perry class frigates there are enough ships existing.

    Sea Swap also helps mitigate the short-fall somewhat.

    *The five non-VLS shisp were decommissioned 2004-2005.

    ** 28 Burke I/II and 19 Burke IIA( these have helo hanger facilities)

    The OH Perry class frigates operate in conjunction with an A Burke I/II destroyer in the ESG's and sometimes SSG's.

    The 14 OH Perry class frigates still used in battlegroups are only placeholders until enough A. Burkes and DD(X) are built.

    All 30 of the remaining OH Perry class frigates are nominally to be replaced by some 60 LCS(Littoral Combat Ship).

    A comparison of the USS John F Kennedy CV-67 Carrier Battle Group (CVBG) and the new Carrier Strike Group(CSG):

    Release Date: 7/19/2002 12:03:00 PM

    Also being relieved of the watch in the Arabian Sea are: Carrier Air Wing Seven (CVW 7) from Oceana, Va.; Mayport-based USS Vicksburg (CG 69), and the Norfolk-based fast combat support ship USS Seattle (AOE 3).

    The remaining ships of the Kennedy Battle Group, all Mayport-based, remain deployed overseas. They include: USS Hue City (CG 66), USS The Sullivans (DDG 68) , USS Carney (DDG 64), USS Roosevelt (DDG 80), USS Spruance (DD 963), USS Underwood (FFG 36), and USS Taylor (FFG 50).

    Two attack submarines are also members of the Kennedy Battle Group: USS Toledo (SSN 769), home ported in Groton, Conn., and the Norfolk-based USS Boise (SSN 764).

    Kennedy deployed in early February and has been the only U.S. carrier supporting Operation Enduring Freedom since April.

    Release Date: 3/5/2004 9:40:00 AM

    -- Ships and aircraft of the USS John F. Kennedy (CV 67) Carrier Strike Group (CSG) are in the midst of their Composite Training Unit Exercise (COMPTUEX).

    Commanded by Rear Adm. Donald K. Bullard, Commander, Carrier Group 6, the JFK CSG is comprised of the Mayport, Fla.-based ships John F. Kennedy, commanded by Capt. Ronald H. Henderson; the guided-missile cruiser USS Vicksburg (CG 69); the guided-missile destroyer USS Roosevelt (DDG 80); the destroyer USS Spruance (DD 963); the fast combat support ship USS Seattle (AOE 3), homeported in Earle, N.J.; the attack submarine USS Toledo (SSN 769), homeported in Groton, Conn., and Carrier Air Wing 17, commanded by Capt. Mark D. Guadagnini, embarked aboard USS John F. Kennedy.

    Heres the USS George Washington CVBG 2002 and CSG 2004:

    Release Date: 12/18/2002 12:51:00 PM

    -- More than 7,500 Sailors and Marines assigned to the ships and squadrons of the USS George Washington (CVN 73) Aircraft Carrier Battle Group (CVBG) will return to Norfolk this week, completing a six-month combat deployment in the Arabian Gulf, in addition to operations in the Mediterranean Sea and Atlantic Ocean.

    On Dec. 20, returning units include USS George Washington; Commander, Destroyer Squadron Two; the guided-missile cruisers USS Normandy (CG 60) and USS Monterey (CG 61); the Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyers USS Laboon (DDG 58) and USS Mahan (DDG 72); and the fast combat support ship USNS Supply (AOE 6). The embarked squadrons of Carrier Air Wing 17 will fly off Dec. 19.

    Other units of the Washington CVBG returning later this winter include the guided-missile frigate USS Kauffman (FFG 59), the guided-missile destroyer USS Barry (DDG 52) and the destroyer USS Arthur W. Radford (DD 968) .

    During their six-month deployment, George Washington launched approximately 10,000 sorties.

    Release Date: 1/13/2004 4:15:00 PM

    Commanded by Rear Adm. H. Denby Starling II, commander, Carrier Group 8, the GWCSG includes the Norfolk-based aircraft carrier George Washington with its embarked air wing, Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 7, the Norfolk-based guided-missile cruiser USS Vella Gulf (CG 72), the Norfolk-based guided-missile destroyer USS Bulkeley (DDG 84), and the combat logistics ship USNS Supply (T-AOE 6) from Naval Weapons Station Earle, N.J. HMCS Toronto, a Canadian Halifax-class patrol frigate, will also deploy with the GWCSG. Additionally, the Norfolk-based submarine USS Albany (SSN 753) is a part of the GWCSG.

    The above post were Atlantic Fleet groups below are Pacific Fleet groups:

    USS Nimitz Battle Group Commences Southern California Training Exercise
    Story Number: NNS030113-13
    Release Date: 1/14/2003 11:29:00 AM

    Joining Nimitz as participants in the exercise will be CCDG-5; CVW-11; Destroyer Squadron 23; Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit 11 Detachment (Det) 1; cruisers USS Chosin (CG 65) and USS Princeton (CG 59); guided-missile destoyers USS Fitzgerald (DDG 62) and USS Benfold (DDG 65); guided-missile frigate USS Rodney M Davis (FFG 60); destroyer USS Oldendorf (DD 972); attack submarine USS Pasadena (SSN 752); and fast combat support ship USS Bridge (AOE 10).

    Nimitz Strike Group Completes JTFEX 05-03
    Release Date: 4/6/2005 1:44:00 PM

    More than 6,500 Sailors and Marines from Nimitz, Carrier Air Wing 11, Destroyer Squadron 23, USS Princeton (CG 59), USS Higgins (DDG 76), USS Chafee (DDG 90), USNS Bridge (T-AOE 10) and USS Louisville (SSN 724) sharpened their operational skills in preparation for their upcoming summer deployment.

    Lincoln Carrier Battle Group Deploys With Numerous Innovations
    Release Date: 7/30/2002 10:48:00 AM

    The Ticonderoga-class cruisers USS Shiloh (CG 67) and USS Mobile Bay (CG 53) .

    Also in the battle group USS Fletcher (DD 992), USS Paul Hamilton (DDG 60) and USS Reuben James (FFG 57) and the attack submarine USS Honolulu (SSN 718)

    San Diego Ships to Depart with USS Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group
    Story Number: NNS041018-08
    Release Date: 10/18/2004 3:44:00 PM

    -- USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72) Carrier Strike Group arrived in San Diego Oct. 16 and will depart Oct. 19 to support Commander, U.S. 7th Fleet potential contingency operations and theater security cooperation initiatives.

    The Lincoln Carrier Strike Group will deploy with the following San Diego-based ships: the cruiser USS Shiloh (CG 67), commanded by Capt. Joe Harriss; and the destroyer USS Benfold (DDG 65), commanded by Cmdr. Don Hornbeck. Other ships deploying with the Lincoln Carrier Strike Group include the Everett, Wash.-based destroyer USS Shoup (DDG 86), led by Cmdr. Alexander T. Casimes; the Pearl Harbor-based attack submarine USS Louisville (SSN 724), under the command of Cmdr. David Kirk; and the fast combat support ship USS Rainier (AOE 7), based in Bremerton, Wash,.

    And so its gone for the last 65 years or so.

    How many escorts are necessary?

    Of what type and quality?

    And maybe more important whats actually available at any given moment in time rather than what would be optimal.

    The basic paradigm seems to have changed little.

  2. #2
    Global Moderator
    Comrade Commissar
    TopHatter's Avatar
    Join Date
    03 Sep 03
    Damn dude! That's a lot of info you've got there
    Are you planning on publishing this somehow? Online or something?

    Question: You noted that the USN was extremely unhappy with the Knox and OHP class of frigates.
    Were these basically forced upon them by fiscal frugality?
    Far better it is to dare mighty things, than to take rank with those poor, timid spirits who know neither victory nor defeat ~ Theodore Roosevelt

  3. #3
    Military Professional
    Join Date
    09 Aug 03
    Just a bunch of stuff Ive been looking at for years. And just trying to put it all together in a small format.

    And trying to solicit some feedback on my observations and conclusions.

    Cerainly cost containment was an issue as the cost of the AAW DDG's and DLG's extravagant. Also the Vietnam War was eating up tons of money.

    Some of the criticisms of the Knox as compared to the WWII destroyers they were ostensibly replacing and other shortcomings:

    Large size

    Slow speed: 27knts vs 35knts

    Very wet forward


    Only one 5" gun

    Due to the cost and the relative ineffectiveness of the Tartar AAW missle system there was no AAW missle installation until a Sea Sparrow launcher was backfitted from 1971 to 1975 in 31 of of the 46 built..

    Non-redundant propulsion system:

    Only two boilers, one turbine and one shaft compared to double that on a typical destroyer

    OTOH with a large low-frequency bow-mounted sona, VDS and later Towed array sonars, a small manned LAMPS I ASW helo made possible by the large hanger space originally provided for the failed DASH remote-control Drone ASw Helo, an ASROC with provison for reloads and a Prairie-Masker bubbler system for reducing radiated noise made them excellent ASW platforms.

    The OHP class was similarly vilified over the years although not all the criticisms were identical. Plus w/o LAMPS III helos or a towed sonar array in the first 1/2 of the class of 51, because of only having a hull-mounted medium-frequency sonar, no ASROC and noisier they were not nearly as effective at ASW. They also were considered quite expensive at the time of construction also taking into account their initial capabilities.

    The Spruance class destroyers to were criticised. For being too large and under-armed for the cost.

    But all three classes did yeoman work from the time they were introduced into service.

    I hope this explains things a bit.
    Last edited by rickusn; 26 Nov 05, at 17:45.

  4. #4
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    I'm impressed with your report. It's great to run accorss others with great knowledge of the navy. If ever you want to chat I'm the EQNEEDF or Batman47, NCOIC of the U. S. Armed Forces Section of Mail Call, Sound Off Forum or

    the owner and author of Home and or

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    I will be publishin 17-books about U. S. Aircraft Carrier History this year

    take care
    Last edited by Batman47; 08 Feb 07, at 03:52.

  5. #5
    Senior Contributor smilingassassin's Avatar
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    Rickusn, very informative post. I'm particularily interested in early carrier doctrine as I'm involved with a naval based simulation...

    Wesworld - Main Page

    If your interested drop by the site and drop a few posts.
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  6. #6
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    I only can say Wow!!!
    Collecting all that information and putting all together should had been a hard job.... but I think you enjoyed doing so .

    A pair of questions

    With only 10 Carrier air wings can we assume that it wil be really hard to see more than 6 Carriers deployed?
    My assumption goes on the fact that the other 4 Air wings aircrews will lack the required training or just came back from deployment

    If this is right will that allow more scorts available per Carrier group?

    My question is because reading part of the information Inoted that actually a Carrier will have only 3 scorts dedicated. I think from the AAW point it should not be a problem , but form the ASW point iit worries me a lot . Only imagine thta you had 2 of the scorts covering the main threat axis it only left you 1 scort in the near vecinity of the Carrir. I dont like that position.

  7. #7
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    Thanks gentleman.

    I have either emailed you or PMd you with my email address.

  8. #8
    Military Professional wabpilot's Avatar
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    Commuting between Dresden and Ft. Worth
    Rick, nice work. Many thanks.
    Quote Originally Posted by rickusn View Post
    ...And so its gone for the last 65 years or so.

    How many escorts are necessary?
    I think the lesson I take from your essay is that our escorts have become multi-dimensional. In WWII and even the FRAM ships of the early cold war a DD or DE performed one main task. For example, a FRAM DD was an ASW ship. It lacked any means of engaging a fast flying target aimed at anything other than itself. A FRAM DD also lacked the ability to engage a target at anything like the range necessary to be regarded as safe. In essence, if the 5" 38's opened up, it was too late! Much the same was said in late WWII of the 20mm's. Thus, for a CBG to have any air defense other than the air wing, it needed cruisers or guided missile frigates. (For a time we called CGs frigates.) Destroyers well into the 1960s were only ASW ships.

    Then the Adams class was built. For the first time since WWII, long range anti-air warfare was brought to a destroyer size hull. To be fair, an Adams displaced about twice what a FRAM DD did. An Adams had outstanding AAW and with ASROC it was a good if not great ASW ship. The lack of a towed array sonar was a real handicap when it came to ASW. An issue that was largely dealt with by the DEs at the time, which we came to know later as FFs. So, is it fair to say that an Adams replaced a FRAM on a one for one basis? I say no. I believe that one Adams is easily worth two FRAM ships.

    The same ratio has held for much of time since. The Burkes displace twice as much as the Adams class. From and AAW standpoint, they are far more than twice as effective. AEGIS and VLS Standard SM-2 are as great an advance from the Mk13, Tartar and later SM-1 as they were over previous AAW systems. The Burkes are also taking up the land attack role which was largely ignored from the end of the Korean war until late in the cold war. The Spruances got TLAMs. But, now all the Burkes have the capability. As time moves on, we see escorts becoming more and more capable. A Burke easily replaces two Adams and even some of the capability of a Spruance. The Flight IIA Burkes more than replace all the capabilities of two Spruances. Is it a danger to have only three escorts for a CV? In reality, that is like six of ther immediate predeceassors or twelve FRAMs.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by wabpilot View Post
    The Flight IIA Burkes more than replace all the capabilities of two Spruances. Is it a danger to have only three escorts for a CV? In reality, that is like six of ther immediate predeceassors or twelve FRAMs.
    I am not sure I agree with this, first because numbers count, but specifically because I don't believe what you say is true.

    They had other problems like all ships ultimately do, but I'm not sure I would agree a Flight IIA "more than replaces all the capabilities of two Spruances," because if we are being factually accurate, the VLS Spruance class almost always deployed with more Tomahawks than Flight IIAs do today and was a better ASW platform than the Flight IIAs are today.

    They may not have had good air defenses, but they were quiet, they were fast, they were big, and they were very stable on the water and the Spruance class may have been the best ASW surface ship the US Navy has ever fielded, in the past or present.

    The Arleigh Burkes are better ships, but I don't think any single Arleigh Burke class ship of any flight is able to substitute two Spruances straight up in a Carrier Battle Group.

    I think rick's question is hard to answer because throughout the history of carrier warfare, naval warfare was centrally focused in blue water. I think we are still in the first decade of a new naval era in which events will be decided in littorals, not blue water, and I'm not quite sure what any task force should look like yet in this new era, much less a carrier task force.

  10. #10
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    Ten carrier fleet


    When Carl Vinson (CVN)-70) completes her refuling, the Theodore Roosevelt (CVN-71) will most likely commence her 3 1/2 year refuling, thereby leaving the navy with 11-commissioned carriers, and ten active from 2009 to 2012.

    From 2008 (CV-63 Decommissioned/2009) through 2015, due to leave rotations, SRA, ESRA, DPIA, PIA, RCOH, etc., active carriers will average between nine to ten semi-annually and or annually while 4 to 6 carriers will make deployments if the level of threat in the middle east doesn't pick up.

    Commissioned U. S. Aircraft Carrier Status As Of 2006/07
    eqneedf - View topic - Commissioned U. S. Aircraft Carrier Status As Of 2006/07

    The USS Kennedy (CV-67) is scheduled to decommission in 2007, most likely around the same time USS George W. Bush (CVN-77) commissions due to manning relaties, leaving our navy with eleven active carriers due to USS Carl Vinson (CVN-70) RCOH, being towed from Naval Station Norfolk to Northrop Grumman's Newport News Shipbuilding in order to begin the Refueling and Complex Overhaul (RCOH) 11 November 2005, where she will be completely refitted, and the nuclear fuel that powers the Nimitz-class carrier will be replenished in a period of 3 1/2 years; commencing planning for 2005's RCOH upon return from her second around-the-world deployment and home port transfer from Bremerton, Washington, upon conclusion of her six-month deployment 31 July 2005, her tenth Indian Ocean deployment and fifth Arabian Sea/Gulf (Persian Gulf deployment) in support for Operation Iraqi Freedom on her first Gulf of Aden and Red Sea voyage, on her first Suez Canal transit and second voyage in the Mediterranean Sea.

    With Carl Vinson (CVN-70) (58th) under going a 3 year RCOH (July 2009 scheduled to complete) USS Nimitz (CVN-68) kicking off Planned Incremental Availability (PIA) six-month maintenance period on 5 March 2006, Harry S. Truman CVN 75 (63rd) scheduled to complete DPIA (Docked-Planned Incremental Availability) thanksgiving 2006, commencing January 2006. The number of active carriers from January to thanksgiving was 9, remaining 9 until around March 2007 because USS George Washington (CVN-73) will begin a DPIA in the Fall of 2006 at Norfolk Naval Shipyard and USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) commencing DPIA work at the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard from September 5 2006 through mid-March of 2007; thereby leaving the US Navy with 9 active carriers until mid-March of 2007 or earlier if CVN-72 completes DPIA before CVN-73.

    With the decommissioning of John F. Kennedy (CV-67), former CVA-67 (the 55th Aircraft Carrier of the U. S. Navy) scheduled in FY 2007 and provided George H. W. Bush is commissioned before CV-67's decommissioning, the US Navy will retain 12 commissioned carriers with CVN-70 out of commission until July 2009.

    In 2008, USS George Washington (CVN-73) is to replace the conventionally powered carrier USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63) at Yokosuka Naval Base, Japan and soon after CV-63 is scheduled to decommission at which time the US Navy will a have 11 commissioned aircraft carriers until the commissioning of CVN-78 (1st ship in the CVN-21 class) with the initial capability set for FY2015. Actual construction is to begin in January 2007 at Northrop Grumman Corp.'s Newport News shipyard.

    In 2008, the USS George Washington (CVN-73) is to replace the conventionally powered carrier USS Kitty Hawk(CV-63) at Yokosuka Naval Base, Japan and while the hole of Japan may be divided on the idea, Yokosuka mayor Ryoichi Kabaya told Japanese reporters prior to April 24, 2006, that the city would be willing to accept the deployment of a U.S. nuclear-powered aircraft, according to a report in the Asahi Shimbunand

    The U.S. Navy is planning to set up an emergency operations center in the event of an accident involving the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier it plans to deploy in 2008 to its base in Yokosuka, Kanagawa Prefecture, sources said August 4, 2006.

    From 2008 (CV-63 Dec.) through 2015, due to leave rotations, SRA, ESRA, DPIA, PIA, RCOH, etc., active carriers will average between nine to ten semi-annually and or annually while 4 to 6 carriers will make deployments if the level of threat in the middle east doesn't pick up.

    President George W. Bush will deliver the principal address at the christening ceremony of the Navy's newest aircraft carrier, named for his father, former President George H. W. Bush, at a 10 a.m. EDT on Saturday, Oct. 7 at Northrop Grumman Newport News Shipyard, Newport News, Va.

    You'd think we would have a carrier under going SLEP right know just in case we need to replace Kitty Hawk with a CV or for that matter, needed an extra carrier for back up. These very issues are one reason I decided three years ago to do something to get the Navy to start focusing on there carrier strengths and enlistments.

    It could be the Navy is relying on our subs with there rearmament package of nonnuclear intercontinental ballistic missiles (Conventional Trident Missiles) that will give America a necessary quick-strike weapon in the war on terror, the vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said June 7.

    Maybe 12 to 15 carriers won't be needed. If that's the case a lot of hurt will be felt by someone but I don't see how subs will be able to police the sky in order to prevent major escalation in the theater of operations in the Mid East in particular.




    End Note:

    Lend lease America (CV-66), former CVA-64 to Australia and build several LPH/jeep carriers, and put Independence (CV-62), former CVA-62 and Constellation (CV-64), former CVA-64 in a 2nd SLEEP.


    We no longer have an LPH that a jet fighter can land on with the exception of the Harrier Jet flown by our marines.

    COMEXSTRKGRU/PHIBRON Amphibious Squadrons/Ship's Master
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    USN, USMC and USCG Helicopter Squadron's
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    DoD, Homeland Def. Natl. Guard, OEF/OIF-U.S Military Master
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    Last edited by Batman47; 08 Feb 07, at 04:42.

  11. #11
    Military Professional wabpilot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Galrahn View Post
    I am not sure I agree with this, first because numbers count, but specifically because I don't believe what you say is true.
    Think again before you call someone a liar. If hurling insults is the way you like to conduct yourself, then I have no interest in further discussion on this matter with you.

  12. #12
    New Member thejester's Avatar
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    I think he's saying that your conclusions are mistaken, mate, not that you're a liar.

  13. #13
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    I'm a newbie

    And most likely do to many other tasks will not be very active, but my conclusions are just that, conslusions and most likely our Admirals would rather play with subs then ship's.
    Last edited by Batman47; 08 Feb 07, at 05:37.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by wabpilot View Post
    Think again before you call someone a liar. If hurling insults is the way you like to conduct yourself, then I have no interest in further discussion on this matter with you.
    poor wording on my part, I simply disagree with your assessment regarding your comparison of the platforms.

    Was not intended to be insulting or confrontational.

  15. #15
    Defense Professional Dreadnought's Avatar
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    Then the Adams class was built. For the first time since WWII, long range anti-air warfare was brought to a destroyer size hull. To be fair, an Adams displaced about twice what a FRAM DD did. An Adams had outstanding AAW and with ASROC it was a good if not great ASW ship. The lack of a towed array sonar was a real handicap when it came to ASW. An issue that was largely dealt with by the DEs at the time, which we came to know later as FFs. So, is it fair to say that an Adams replaced a FRAM on a one for one basis? I say no. I believe that one Adams is easily worth two FRAM ships.

    WABPilot, I pass her namesake every weekend heading for the New Jersey.
    DDG-2 Charles F. Adams (originally DD952) -The grand daddy of all of the guided missle destroyers is still afloat and berthed inside Philly Naval Yard basin along with a few others of note.
    Last edited by Dreadnought; 09 Feb 07, at 18:32.
    Fortitude.....The strength to persist...The courage to endure.

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