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"Repurpose the Nimitz" Topic

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Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian08 Aug 2019 8:57 p.m. PST

The Navy needs an airpower platform to innovate, integrate, and test technology and tactics before the next great power conflict. It should overhaul the Nimitz (CVN-68) as an experimental aircraft carrier prior to her scheduled decommissioning.


Thresher01 Supporting Member of TMP08 Aug 2019 10:56 p.m. PST

Interesting article.

Clearly, China's ballistic missiles need to be priority targets, if/when we ever go to war with them. They should be eliminated/neutralized in the first 12 – 24 hours of any conflict.

Given the dangerous world in which we live in, it seems like extending its life would be prudent, instead of scrapping, or using it as a test-bad.

I support the latter over other options, if its life can't be extended.

OldGrenadier at work09 Aug 2019 5:48 a.m. PST

Given the age of the ship, there may not be any other economical options.

Personal logo SBminisguy Supporting Member of TMP09 Aug 2019 9:02 a.m. PST

What if you removed all the aircraft, added additional radars and fire control systems, then then turned the entire flight deck into a massive multi-celled VLS?

Personal logo FingerandToeGlenn Sponsoring Member of TMP09 Aug 2019 9:29 a.m. PST

Iirc, one reason for the Nimitz's demise was that as the sole ship in her class, spare parts had to basically be hand made and even conventional maintenance was way too expensive. I like the idea of the missile carrier, an idea the Navy has continuously rejected, but those VLS module would still sit in a hill too expensive to maintain.

Lion in the Stars09 Aug 2019 11:05 a.m. PST


Nimitz was the lead ship of her class of 10 carriers!

Enterprise was the one-off hull.

And refitting the Nimitz would require refueling her. Reactors close to the end of their design life will die faster if run at full power compared to running at low power, but aircraft carriers need to run close to full power all the time.

Refueling a carrier is a half-billion-dollar project!

Personal logo FingerandToeGlenn Sponsoring Member of TMP09 Aug 2019 2:40 p.m. PST

Right you are! My error. No idea how I mixed them up.
Still, the VLS option could free up ships being used for BMD.

Ghostrunner09 Aug 2019 6:01 p.m. PST

Love the idea of a nuke Arsenal ship, but won't fly from a cost perspective.

Carriers need speed and plenty of steam. Less room for ship fuel also means more fly juice.

Other than the high endurance, one wonders why a VLS platform would need the nuke plant.

HMS Exeter Supporting Member of TMP10 Aug 2019 9:51 a.m. PST

I've got a crazy idea.

Let's tow the Nimitz to a point, maybe 5 miles south of Guam. We piant a HUGE bullseye on her, and some insulting grafitti, you know, "Xi Xinping prefers US movies."

We tell the Chinese where it is, that there's no one aboard. Then we tell them, you know those scaaary ship killing misses you keep talking about…

"Put up or shut up."

It's a win win. Either they don't try, loss of face, they try and fail, loss of face, or they try and succeed, priceless intelligence coup.

Thresher01 Supporting Member of TMP10 Aug 2019 2:49 p.m. PST

It could make a heck of an arsenal ship, especially with a mix of ballistic and surface-to-surface cruise missiles on it.

Nuke powerplant is needed for speed to keep the enemy off balance as to where it is, or will be. It can steam at, or near full power for quite some time, giving them headaches.

Yea, I imagine age is the real killer here, but that cost to refuel is a drop in the bucket compared to buying new ones, not to mention the inevitable delays in fielding it/them.

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