Sunday, December 2, 2012

Big "E"

USS Enterprise (CVN-65) has been retired.

Much has been written about her service and I won't reprise that here. And it's nice to note that CVN-80, if the Navy builds her, will bear the name.*

But there are a couple of things to ponder. The Big E was so expensive to build that not only were her sister ships cancelled before they were even given prospective hull numbers, the next two carriers built were oil-fired (America and JFK). It was another fifteen years before the Navy built another nuclear-powered CV. With eight reactors, she was expensive to operate. Ideally, she should have been replaced and retired twenty years ago.
* If she is commissioned in 2025, as currently planned, she would also be the first CVN in fifty years not to be named after a politician.

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