U.S. Department of Defense
* Dept. of the
Navy (since 1798)
Arlington County, Virginia
Arlington County, Virginia , U.S.
"_Non sibi sed patriae_" (English: "_Not for self but for
Anchors Aweigh " _ Play (help ·info )
see Equipment section below
American Revolutionary War
First Barbary War
War of 1812
Second Barbary War
West Indies Anti-Piracy Operations
African Anti-Slavery Operations
Aegean Sea Anti-Piracy Operations
First Sumatran expedition
First Sumatran expedition
United States exploration expedition
Second Sumatran expedition
Capture of Monterey
Bombardment of Greytown
Battle of Ty-ho Bay
First Fiji expedition
Second Opium War
Second Fiji expedition
American Civil War
Bombardment of Qui Nhon
Bombardment of Qui Nhon
United States expedition to Korea
Egyptian Expedition (1882)
Bering Sea Anti-Poaching Operations
Kingdom of Hawaii overthrowal
Second Samoan Civil War
* Occupation of Nicaragua
* Occupation of Haiti
* Occupation of the Dominican Republic (1916)
World War I
World War I
Bombardment of Samsun
World War II
World War II
1958 Lebanon crisis
1958 Lebanon crisis
Occupation of the Dominican Republic (1965)
Iranian Hostage Rescue
Multinational Force in Lebanon
Invasion of Grenada
Bombing of Libya (1986)
* Earnest Will
* Prime Chance
* Eager Glacier
* Nimble Archer
* Praying Mantis
Invasion of Panama
Iraqi no-fly zones
Somali Civil War
International Force for East Timor
Operation Enduring Freedom
* Afghanistan (2001–2014)
* Horn of Africa
* Pankisi Gorge
* Trans Sahara
* Caribbean and Central America
Operation Burnt Frost
Operation Odyssey Dawn
Operation Odyssey Dawn
2014 Intervention against ISIL
Operation Inherent Resolve
War in Afghanistan (2015–present)
2017 Shayrat missile strike
Presidential Unit Citation
Navy Unit Commendation
Meritorious Unit Commendation
Meritorious Unit Commendation
SECRETARY OF DEFENSE
SECRETARY OF THE NAVY
Richard V. Spencer
CHIEF OF NAVAL OPERATIONS
ADM John M. Richardson
VICE CHIEF OF NAVAL OPERATIONS
ADM William F. Moran
MASTER CHIEF PETTY OFFICER
Steven S. Giordano
ANCHOR, CONSTITUTION_, AND EAGLE
The UNITED STATES NAVY (USN) is the naval warfare service branch of
United States Armed Forces and one of the seven uniformed services
United States . The U.S.
Navy is the largest, most capable navy
in the world, with the highest combined battle fleet tonnage .
Navy has the world's largest aircraft carrier fleet, with
eleven in service , two in the reserve fleet , and two new carriers
under construction. The service has 322,421 personnel on active duty
and 107,577 in the
Navy Reserve . It has 276 deployable combat vessels
and more than 3,700 operational aircraft as of June 2017 .
Navy traces its origins to the Continental
Navy , which was
established during the
American Revolutionary War and was effectively
disbanded as a separate entity shortly thereafter. It played a major
role in the
American Civil War by blockading the Confederacy and
seizing control of its rivers. It played the central role in the World
War II defeat of Imperial Japan. The 21st century U.S.
a sizable global presence, deploying in strength in such areas as the
Western Pacific , the
Mediterranean , and the
Indian Ocean . It is a
blue-water navy with the ability to project force onto the littoral
regions of the world, engage in forward deployments during peacetime
and rapidly respond to regional crises, making it a frequent actor in
U.S. foreign and military policy.
Navy is administratively managed by the Department of the
which is headed by the civilian Secretary of the
Navy . The Department
Navy is itself a division of the Department of Defense , which
is headed by the Secretary of Defense . The Chief of Naval Operations
(CNO) is a four-star admiral and the senior naval officer of the
Department of the Navy.
* 1 Mission
* 2 History
* 2.1 Origins
* 2.2 From re-establishment to the Civil War
* 2.3 20th century
World War I
World War I and interwar years
World War II
World War II
* 2.4 21st century
* 3 Organization
* 3.1 Operating forces
* 3.2 Shore establishments
* 3.3 Relationships with other service branches
United States Marine Corps
United States Coast Guard
* 4 Personnel
* 4.1 Uniforms
* 4.1.1 Commissioned officers
* 4.1.2 Commissioned warrant officer ranks
* 4.1.4 Badges of the
* 5 Bases
* 5.1 Eastern
* 5.2 Western
United States and Hawaii
United States territories
* 5.4 Foreign countries
* 6 Equipment
* 6.1 Ships
* 6.1.2 Amphibious warfare vessels
* 6.1.3 Cruisers
* 6.1.5 Frigates and Littoral combat ships
Mine countermeasures ships
* 6.1.7 Patrol boats
* 6.1.8 Submarines
* 6.3 Weapons
* 7 Naval jack
* 8 Notable sailors
* 9 See also
* 10 References
* 11 External links
The mission of the
Navy is to maintain, train and equip combat-ready
Naval forces capable of winning wars, deterring aggression and
maintaining freedom of the seas. — Mission statement of the United
Navy is a seaborne branch of the military of the United
States . The Navy's three primary areas of responsibility:
* The preparation of naval forces necessary for the effective
prosecution of war.
* The maintenance of naval aviation, including land-based naval
aviation, air transport essential for naval operations, and all air
weapons and air techniques involved in the operations and activities
of the Navy.
* The development of aircraft , weapons, tactics, technique,
organization, and equipment of naval combat and service elements.
Navy training manuals state that the mission of the U.S. Armed
Forces is "to prepare and conduct prompt and sustained combat
operations in support of the national interest. "As part of that
establishment, the U.S. Navy's functions comprise sea control , power
projection and nuclear deterrence , in addition to "sealift " duties.
Main article: History of the
It follows then as certain as that night succeeds the day, that
without a decisive naval force we can do nothing definitive, and with
it, everything honorable and glorious. —
Navy was rooted in the colonial seafaring tradition, which
produced a large community of sailors, captains, and shipbuilders. In
the early stages of the
American Revolutionary War ,
Massachusetts Naval Militia . The establishment of a national
navy was an issue of debate among the members of the Second
Continental Congress . Supporters argued that a navy would protect
shipping, defend the coast, and make it easier to seek out support
from foreign countries. Detractors countered that challenging the
Navy , then the world's preeminent naval power, was a
foolish undertaking. Commander in Chief
George Washington resolved the
debate when he commissioned the ocean-going schooner USS _Hannah_ to
interdict British merchant ships, and reported the captures to the
Congress. On 13 October 1775, the
Continental Congress authorized the
purchase of two vessels to be armed for a cruise against British
merchant ships; this resolution created the Continental
Navy and is
considered the first establishment of the U.S. Navy. The Continental
Navy achieved mixed results; it was successful in a number of
engagements and raided many British merchant vessels, but it lost
twenty-four of its vessels and at one point was reduced to two in
active service. In August 1785, after the Revolutionary War drew to a
close, Congress had sold _Alliance_ , the last ship remaining in the
Navy due to a lack of funds to maintain the ship or
support a navy.
In 1972, the Chief of Naval Operations, Admiral
Elmo Zumwalt ,
Navy to celebrate its birthday on 13 October to honor
the establishment of the Continental
Navy in 1775.
FROM RE-ESTABLISHMENT TO THE CIVIL WAR
_ USS Constellation_ vs _L\'Insurgente_ during the
United States was without a navy for nearly a decade, a state of
affairs that exposed U.S. maritime merchant ships to a series of
attacks by the
Barbary pirates . The sole armed maritime presence
between 1790 and the launching of the U.S. Navy's first warships in
1797 was the
U.S. Revenue Cutter Service (USRCS), the primary
predecessor of the
U.S. Coast Guard . Although the USRCS conducted
operations against the pirates, their depredations far outstripped its
abilities and Congress passed the
Naval Act of 1794 that established a
permanent standing navy on 27 March 1794. The Naval Act ordered the
construction and manning of six frigates and, by October 1797, the
first three were brought into service: USS _United States_ , USS
_Constellation_ , and USS _Constitution_ . Due to his strong posture
on having a strong standing
Navy during this period,
John Adams is
"often called the father of the American
Navy ". In 1798–99 the
Navy was involved in an undeclared
Quasi-War with France. From 1801
to 1805, in the
First Barbary War , the U.S.
Navy defended U.S. ships
from the Barbary pirates, blockaded the Barbary ports and executed
attacks against the Barbary' fleets.
Navy saw substantial action in the
War of 1812 , where it
was victorious in eleven single-ship duels with the Royal Navy. It
drove all significant British forces off
Lake Erie and Lake Champlain
and prevented them from becoming British-controlled zones. The result
was a major defeat for the British invasion of New York state , and
the defeat of the military threat from the Native American allies of
the British. Despite this, the U.S.
Navy was unable to prevent the
British from blockading its ports and landing troops. After the war,
Navy again focused its attention on protecting American
shipping assets, sending squadrons to the Caribbean, the Mediterranean
where it participated in the
Second Barbary War that ended piracy in
the region, South America, Africa, and the Pacific. From 1819 to the
outbreak of the Civil War, the
Africa Squadron operated to suppress
the slave trade , seizing 36 slave ships, although its contribution
was smaller than that of the much larger British Royal Navy. _ USS
Constitution_ vs HMS _Guerriere_ during the
War of 1812
Mexican–American War the U.S.
Navy blockaded Mexican
ports, capturing or burning the Mexican fleet in the Gulf of
California and capturing all major cities in Baja California
peninsula. In 1846–1848 the
Navy successfully used the Pacific
Squadron under Commodore
Robert Stockton and its marines and
blue-jackets to facilitate the capture of California with large scale
land operations coordinated with the local militia organized in the
California Battalion . The
Navy conducted the U.S. military's first
large-scale amphibious joint operation by successfully landing 12,000
army troops with their equipment in one day at Veracruz, Mexico . When
larger guns were needed to bombard Veracruz,
Navy volunteers landed
large guns and manned them in the successful bombardment and capture
of the city. This successful landing and capture of Veracruz opened
the way for the capture of Mexico City and the end of the war. The
Navy established itself as a player in
United States foreign
policy through the actions of Commodore Matthew Perry in Japan, which
resulted in the
Convention of Kanagawa in 1854.
Naval power played a significant role during the
American Civil War ,
in which the Union had a distinct advantage over the Confederacy on
the seas. A
Union blockade on all major ports shut down exports and
the coastal trade, but blockade runners (mostly owned and operated by
British companies) provided a thin lifeline. The brown-water Navy\'s
control of the river systems made internal travel difficult for
Confederates and easy for the Union. The war saw ironclad warships in
combat for the first time at the
Battle of Hampton Roads in 1862,
which pitted USS _Monitor_ against CSS _Virginia_ . For two decades
after the war, however, the U.S. Navy's fleet was neglected and became
Great White Fleet demonstrates U.S. naval power in 1907; it
was proof that the U.S.
Navy had blue-water capability .
Our ships are our natural bulwarks. —
A modernization program beginning in the 1880s when the first steel
hulled warships stimulated the American steel industry, and "the new
steel navy" was born. This rapid expansion of the U.S.
Navy and its
easy victory over the Spanish
Navy in 1898 brought a new respect for
American technical quality. Rapid building of at first
pre-dreadnoughts, then dreadnoughts brought the U.S. in line with the
navies of countries such as Britain and
Germany . In 1907, most of the
Navy's battleships, with several support vessels, dubbed the Great
White Fleet , were showcased in a 14-month circumnavigation of the
world. Ordered by President
Theodore Roosevelt , it was a mission
designed to demonstrate the Navy's capability to extend to the global
theater. By 1911, the U.S. had begun building the super-dreadnoughts
at a pace to eventually become competitive with Britain. _
Columbia , personification of the United States, wearing a warship
bearing the words "World Power" as her "Easter bonnet" on the cover of
Puck _, 6 April 1901.
World War I
World War I And Interwar Years
Navy saw little action during
World War I
World War I . It concentrated
on mine laying operations against German U-Boats. Hesitation by the
senior command meant that naval forces were not contributed until late
1917. Battleship Division Nine was dispatched to Britain and served as
the Sixth Battle Squadron of the British Grand Fleet. Its presence
allowed the British to decommission some older ships and reuse the
crews on smaller vessels.
Destroyers and U.S. Naval Air Force units
contributed to the anti-submarine operations. The strength of the
Navy grew under an ambitious ship building program
associated with the
Naval Act of 1916 .
Naval construction, especially of battleships was limited by the
Washington Naval Conference
Washington Naval Conference of 1921–22. The aircraft carriers USS
_Saratoga_ (CV-3) and USS _Lexington_ (CV-2) were built on the hulls
of partially built battle cruisers that had been canceled by the
New Deal used
Public Works Administration funds to build
warships, such as USS _Yorktown_ (CV-5) and USS _Enterprise_ (CV-6) .
By 1936, with the completion of USS _Wasp_ (CV-7) , the U.S. Navy
possessed a carrier fleet of 165,000 tonnes displacement , although
this figure was nominally recorded as 135,000 tonnes to comply with
treaty limitations. Franklin Roosevelt, the number two official in the
Navy Department during World War I, appreciated the
Navy and gave it
strong support. In return, senior leaders were eager for innovation
and experimented with new technologies, such as magnetic torpedoes,
and developed a strategy called
War Plan Orange for victory in the
Pacific in a hypothetical war with Japan that would eventually become
World War II
World War II
World War II _ The
battleship USS Idaho_ shells Okinawa on 1 April 1945
Navy grew into a formidable force in the years prior to
World War II
World War II , with battleship production being restarted in 1937,
commencing with USS _North Carolina_ (BB-55) . Though ultimately
unsuccessful, Japan attempted to neutralize this strategic threat with
the surprise attack on
Pearl Harbor on 7 December 1941. Following
American entry into the war, the U.S.
Navy grew tremendously as the
United States was faced with a two-front war on the seas. It achieved
notable acclaim in the Pacific Theater , where it was instrumental to
the Allies' successful "island hopping " campaign. The U.S. Navy
participated in many significant battles, including the Battle of the
Coral Sea , the
Battle of Midway , the
Solomon Islands Campaign , the
Battle of the Philippine Sea
Battle of the Philippine Sea , the
Battle of Leyte Gulf , and the
Battle of Okinawa . By war's end in 1945, the U.S.
Navy had added
hundreds of new ships, including 18 aircraft carriers and 8
battleships, and had over 70% of the world's total numbers and total
tonnage of naval vessels of 1,000 tons or greater. At its peak, the
Navy was operating 6,768 ships on
V-J Day in August 1945.
Doctrine had significantly shifted by the end of the war. The U.S.
Navy had followed in the footsteps of the navies of Great Britain and
Germany which favored concentrated groups of battleships as their main
offensive naval weapons. The development of the aircraft carrier and
its devastating utilization by the Japanese against the U.S. at Pearl
Harbor, however, shifted U.S. thinking. The
Pearl Harbor attack
destroyed or took out of action a significant number of U.S. Navy
battleships. This placed much of the burden of retaliating against the
Japanese on the small number of aircraft carriers.
_ USS George Washington_ (SSBN-598) , a ballistic missile
The potential for armed conflict with the
Soviet Union during the
Cold War pushed the U.S.
Navy to continue its technological
advancement by developing new weapons systems, ships, and aircraft.
U.S. naval strategy changed to that of forward deployment in support
of U.S. allies with an emphasis on carrier battle groups.
The navy was a major participant in the
Vietnam War , blockaded Cuba
Cuban Missile Crisis , and, through the use of ballistic
missile submarines , became an important aspect of the United States'
nuclear strategic deterrence policy. The U.S.
Navy conducted various
combat operations in the
Persian Gulf against Iran in 1987 and 1988,
Operation Praying Mantis . The
Navy was extensively
Operation Urgent Fury , Operation Desert Shield ,
Operation Desert Storm ,
Operation Deliberate Force
Operation Deliberate Force , Operation Allied
Operation Desert Fox and
Operation Southern Watch .
Navy has also been involved in search and rescue/search and
salvage operations, sometimes in conjunction with vessels of other
countries as well as with
U.S. Coast Guard ships. Two examples are the
1966 Palomares B-52 crash incident and search for the nuclear bombs,
and Task Force 71 of the Seventh Fleet operation in search for Korean
Air Lines Flight 007 shot down by the Soviets on 1 September 1983.
When a crisis confronts the nation, the first question often asked by
policymakers is: 'What naval forces are available and how fast can
they be on station?' — Admiral
Carlisle A. H. Trost
Navy continues to be a major support to U.S. interests in
the 21st century. Since the end of the
Cold War , it has shifted its
focus from preparations for large-scale war with the
Soviet Union to
special operations and strike missions in regional conflicts. The
navy participated in
Operation Enduring Freedom , Operation Iraqi
Freedom , and is a major participant in the ongoing
War on Terror ,
largely in this capacity. Development continues on new ships and
weapons, including the _Gerald R. Ford_-class aircraft carrier and the
Littoral combat ship . Because of its size, weapons technology, and
ability to project force far from U.S. shores, the current U.S. Navy
remains a potent asset for the United States. Moreover, it is the
principal means through which the U.S. maintains international global
order, namely by safeguarding global trade and protecting allied
In 2007, the U.S.
Navy joined with the
U.S. Marine Corps and U.S.
Coast Guard to adopt a new maritime strategy called A Cooperative
Strategy for 21st Century Seapower that raises the notion of
prevention of war to the same philosophical level as the conduct of
war. The strategy was presented by the
Chief of Naval Operations , the
Commandant of the Marine Corps , and
Commandant of the Coast Guard at
the International Sea Power Symposium in Newport, RI on 17 October
2007. The strategy recognized the economic links of the global system
and how any disruption due to regional crises—man-made or
natural—can adversely impact the U.S. economy and quality of life.
This new strategy charts a course for the Navy, Coast Guard, and
Marine Corps to work collectively with each other and international
partners to prevent these crises from occurring or reacting quickly
should one occur to prevent negative impacts on the U.S.
In 2010, Chief of Naval Operations, Admiral Gary Roughead, noted that
demands on the
Navy have grown as the fleet has shrunk and that in the
face of declining budgets in the future, the U.S.
Navy must rely even
more on international partnerships.
In its 2013 budget request, the navy focused on retaining all eleven
big deck carriers, at the expense of cutting numbers of smaller ships
and delaying the SSBN replacement. By the next year the USN found
itself unable to maintain eleven aircraft carriers in the face of the
expiration of budget relief offered by the Bipartisan Budget Act of
2013 and CNO
Jonathan Greenert said that a ten ship carrier fleet
would not be able to sustainably support military requirements. The
First Sea Lord
George Zambellas said that the USN had
switched from "outcome-led to resource-led" planning.
One significant change in U.S. policymaking that is having a major
effect on naval planning is the Pivot to East Asia . In response this,
Secretary of the
Ray Mabus has stated that 60 percent of the
total U.S. fleet will be deployed to the Pacific by the year 2020.
The Navy's most recent 30-year shipbuilding plan, published in 2016,
calls for a future fleet of 308 ships in order to meet the challenges
of an increasingly competitive international environment.
Navy officers aboard the aircraft carrier USS _Abraham Lincoln_
(CVN-72) monitor defense systems during early 2010s maritime security
The USS _America_
Amphibious assault ship , launched in 2012.
Navy patrol boat near
Kuwait Naval Base in 2009
Main article: Structure of the
flowchart of U.S.
Navy command structure
Navy falls under the administration of the Department of the
Navy , under civilian leadership of the Secretary of the
. The most senior naval officer is the
Chief of Naval Operations (CNO)
, a four-star admiral who is immediately under and reports to the
Secretary of the Navy. At the same time, the Chief of Naval Operations
is one of the
Joint Chiefs of Staff , which is the second-highest
deliberatory body of the armed forces after the
United States National
Security Council , although it only plays an advisory role to the
President and does not nominally form part of the chain of command.
The Secretary of the
Chief of Naval Operations are
responsible for organizing, recruiting, training, and equipping the
Navy so that it is ready for operation under the command of the
unified combat command commanders .
Main article: List of units of the
There are nine components in the operating forces of the U.S. Navy:
United States Fleet Forces Command (formerly United States
United States Pacific Fleet ,
United States Naval
Forces Central Command ,
United States Naval Forces Europe , Naval
Network Warfare Command ,
Navy Reserve ,
United States Naval Special
Warfare Command ,
Operational Test and Evaluation Force , and Military
Sealift Command . Fleet Forces Command controls a number of unique
capabilities, including Military
Sealift Command, Naval Expeditionary
Combat Command , and
Navy Cyber Forces .
Navy has six active numbered fleets – Third ,
Fifth , Sixth , Seventh Fleet and Tenth Fleets are each led by a vice
admiral , and the Fourth Fleet is led by a rear admiral . These six
fleets are further grouped under Fleet Forces Command (the former
Atlantic Fleet), Pacific Fleet, Naval Forces Europe-Africa, and Naval
Forces Central Command, whose commander also doubles as Commander
Fifth Fleet; the first three commands being led by four-star admirals.
United States First Fleet existed after the Second World War from
1947, but it was redesignated the Third Fleet in early 1973. In early
2008, the navy reactivated the
United States Fourth Fleet to control
operations in the area controlled by Southern Command, which consists
of US assets in and around Central and South America.
_ USS Kitty Hawk_ (CV-63) docks at the U.S.
Navy base in
Yokosuka, Japan .
Shore establishments exist to support the mission of the fleet
through the use of facilities on land. Among the commands of the shore
establishment, as of April 2011 , are the Naval Education and Training
Command , the
Naval Meteorology and Oceanography Command , the Space
and Naval Warfare Systems Command , the Naval Facilities Engineering
Command , the
Naval Supply Systems Command , the Naval Air Systems
Command , the
Naval Sea Systems Command , the Bureau of Medicine and
Surgery , the
Bureau of Naval Personnel , the
United States Naval
Academy , the
Naval Safety Center , the Naval Strike and Air Warfare
Center , and the
United States Naval Observatory . Official Navy
websites list the Office of the
Chief of Naval Operations and the
chief of naval operations as part of the shore establishment, but
these two entities effectively sit superior to the other
organizations, playing a coordinating role.
RELATIONSHIPS WITH OTHER SERVICE BRANCHES
United States Marine Corps
_ A Marine
VMFA-451 prepares to launch from USS Coral
Sea_ (CV-43) Main article:
United States Marine Corps
In 1834, the
United States Marine Corps came under the Department of
Navy . Historically, the
Navy has had a unique relationship with
the USMC, partly because they both specialize in seaborne operations.
Navy and Marine Corps form the Department of the
report to the Secretary of the
Navy . However, the Marine Corps is a
distinct, separate service branch with its own uniformed service
chief – the Commandant of the Marine Corps, a four-star general.
The Marine Corps depends on the
Navy for medical support (dentists ,
doctors , nurses , medical technicians known as corpsmen ) and
religious support (chaplains ). Thus
Navy officers and enlisted
sailors fulfill these roles. When attached to Marine Corps units
deployed to an operational environment they generally wear Marine
camouflage uniforms, but otherwise they wear
Navy dress uniforms
unless they opt to conform to Marine Corps grooming standards.
In the operational environment, as an expeditionary force
specializing in amphibious operations, Marines often embark on Navy
ships to conduct operations from beyond territorial waters. Marine
units deploying as part of a Marine Air-Ground Task Force (MAGTF)
operate under the command of the existing Marine chain of command.
Although Marine units routinely operate from amphibious assault ships,
the relationship has evolved over the years much as the Commander of
the Carrier Air Group/Wing (CAG) does not work for the carrier
commanding officer, but coordinates with the ship's CO and staff. Some
Marine aviation squadrons, usually fixed-wing assigned to carrier air
wings train and operate alongside
Navy squadrons; they fly similar
missions and often fly sorties together under the cognizance of the
CAG. Aviation is where the
Navy and Marines share the most common
ground, since aircrews are guided in their use of aircraft by standard
procedures outlined in series of publications known as
United States Coast Guard
U.S. Coast Guard helicopter prepares to land on the flight
deck of the amphibious assault ship USS Wasp_ (LHD-1) . Main
United States Coast Guard
United States Coast Guard , in its peacetime role with the
Department of Homeland Security , fulfills its law enforcement and
rescue role in the maritime environment. It provides Law Enforcement
Detachments (LEDETs) to
Navy vessels, where they perform arrests and
other law enforcement duties during naval boarding and interdiction
missions. In times of war, the Coast Guard operates as a service in
the Navy. At other times, Coast Guard port security units are sent
overseas to guard the security of ports and other assets. The Coast
Guard also jointly staffs the Navy's naval coastal warfare groups and
squadrons (the latter of which were known as harbor defense commands
until late-2004), which oversee defense efforts in foreign littoral
combat and inshore areas.
Main article: Personnel of the
Navy SEALs at
one of the entrances
Zhawar Kili cave complex.
Navy has nearly 500,000 personnel, approximately a
quarter of whom are in ready reserve. Of those on active duty, more
than eighty percent are enlisted sailors, and around fifteen percent
are commissioned officers ; the rest are midshipmen of the United
States Naval Academy and midshipmen of the Naval Reserve Officer
Training Corps at over 180 universities around the country and officer
candidates at the Navy's
Officer Candidate School .
Enlisted sailors complete basic military training at boot camp and
then are sent to complete training for their individual careers .
Sailors prove they have mastered skills and deserve responsibilities
by completing Personnel Qualification Standards (PQS) tasks and
examinations. Among the most important is the "warfare qualification",
which denotes a journeyman level of capability in Surface Warfare,
Aviation Warfare, Information Dominance Warfare, Naval Aircrew,
Submarine Warfare or Expeditionary
Warfare. Many qualifications are denoted on a sailor's uniform with
Navy badges and insignia .
See also: Uniforms of the
The uniforms of the U.S.
Navy have evolved gradually since the first
uniform regulations for officers were issued in 1802 on the formation
Navy Department. The predominant colors of U.S.
are navy blue and white . U.S.
Navy uniforms were based on Royal Navy
uniforms of the time, and have tended to follow that template.
Navy officer rank insignia and Ranks and
insignia of NATO navies officers
The commissioned officer ranks of the U.S.
Navy are divided into
three categories: junior officers , senior officers , and flag
officers . Junior officers are those officers in pay grades O-1 to
O-4, while senior officers are those in pay grades O-5 and O-6, and
flag officers are those in pay grades of O-7 and above.
grade STUDENT OFFICER
Lieutenant (junior grade)
Rear Admiral (lower half)
MIDN / OC
* 1 Rank in abeyance . Appointments no longer made to this rank in
* Note: Pin-on insignia for paygrades O-3, O-2, and O-1 shown above
are incorrectly depicted as
U.S. Army /
U.S. Air Force insignia; the
U.S. Naval Services (Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard) use insignia
that do not have beveled edges and the O-3 insignia have the
connecting links near the ends of the bars rather than towards the
center. (See the illustration at Lieutenant rank insignia (Navy) for
correct depiction of bars)
Commissioned Warrant Officer Ranks
Chief Warrant Officer Two
Chief Warrant Officer Three
Chief Warrant Officer Four
Chief Warrant Officer Five
See also: List of
Navy enlisted rates and Ranks and
insignia of NATO navies enlisted
Sailors in pay grades E-1 through E-3 are considered to be in
apprenticeships. They are divided into five definable groups, with
colored group rate marks designating the group to which they belong:
Seaman/Seawoman, Fireman, Airman, Constructionman, and Hospitalman.
E-4 to E-6 are non-commissioned officers (NCOs), and are specifically
called Petty Officers in the Navy. Petty Officers perform not only
the duties of their specific career field but also serve as leaders to
junior enlisted personnel. E-7 to E-9 are still considered Petty
Officers, but are considered a separate community within the Navy.
They have separate berthing and dining facilities (where feasible),
wear separate uniforms, and perform separate duties.
After attaining the rate of Master Chief Petty Officer, a service
member may choose to further his or her career by becoming a Command
Master Chief Petty Officer (CMC). A CMC is considered to be the
senior-most enlisted service member within a command, and is the
special assistant to the
Commanding Officer in all matters pertaining
to the health, welfare, job satisfaction, morale, utilization,
advancement and training of the command's enlisted personnel. CMCs
can be Command level (within a single unit, such as a ship or shore
station), Fleet level (squadrons consisting of multiple operational
units, headed by a flag officer or commodore), or Force level
(consisting of a separate community within the Navy, such as
Subsurface, Air, Reserves).
CMC insignia are similar to the insignia for Master Chief, except
that the rating symbol is replaced by an inverted five-point star,
reflecting a change in their rating from their previous rating (i.e.,
MMCM) to CMDCM. The stars for Command Master Chief are silver, while
stars for Fleet or Force Master Chief are gold. Additionally, CMCs
wear a badge, worn on their left breast pocket, denoting their title
(Edit ) _NO INSIGNIA_
Petty Officer Third Class
Petty Officer Second Class
Petty Officer First Class
Chief Petty Officer
Senior Chief Petty Officer
Master Chief Petty Officer
Command Master Chief Petty Officer
Force Master Chief Petty Officer Master Chief Petty Officer of the
Badges Of The
United States Navy
See also: Badges of the
INSIGNIA AND BADGES OF THE UNITED STATES NAVY are military "badges"
issued by the
United States Department of the
Navy to naval service
members who achieve certain qualifications and accomplishments while
serving on both active and reserve duty in the
United States Navy.
Most naval aviation insignia are also permitted for wear on uniforms
United States Marine Corps .
As described in Chapter 5 of U.S.
Navy Uniform Regulations, "badges"
are categorized as _breast insignia_ (usually worn immediately above
and below ribbons) and _identification badges_ (usually worn at breast
pocket level). Breast insignia are further divided between _command_
and _warfare and other qualification_.
Insignia come in the form of metal "pin-on devices" worn on formal
uniforms and embroidered "tape strips" worn on work uniforms. For the
purpose of this article, the general term "insignia" shall be used to
describe both, as it is done in
Navy Uniform Regulations. The term
"badge", although used ambiguously in other military branches and in
informal speak to describe any pin, patch, or tab, is exclusive to
_identification badges_ and authorized _marksmanship awards _
according to the language in
Navy Uniform Regulations, Chapter 5.
Below are just a few of the many badges maintained by the Navy. The
rest can be seen in the article cited at the top of this section:
Naval Aviator Badge
Submarine Officer and
Surface Warfare Officer Insignia
Main article: List of
Navy installations Map of
Navy bases in the
The size, complexity, and international presence of the United States
Navy requires a large number of navy installations to support its
operations. While the majority of bases are located inside the United
States itself, the navy maintains a significant number of facilities
abroad, either in U.S.-controlled territories or in foreign countries
Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA).
EASTERN UNITED STATES
The second largest concentration of installations is at Hampton Roads
Virginia , where the navy occupies over 36,000 acres (15,000 ha) of
land. Located at
Hampton Roads are
Naval Station Norfolk , homeport of
the Atlantic Fleet;
Naval Air Station Oceana , a
Master Jet Base ;
Naval Amphibious Base Little Creek ; and Training Support Center
Hampton Roads as well as a number of
Navy and commercial shipyards
that service navy vessels. The Aegis Training and Readiness Center is
located at the
Naval Support Activity South Potomac in Dahlgren,
Virginia . Maryland is home to NAS Patuxent River , which houses the
Navy's Test Pilot School . Also located in Maryland is the United
States Naval Academy , situated in
Annapolis . NS Newport in Newport,
Rhode Island is home to many schools and tenant commands, including
Officer Candidate School ,
Naval Undersea Warfare Center , and
more, and also maintains inactive ships.
There is also a naval base in Charleston, South Carolina. This is
home to the Nuclear A-School, and the Nuclear Field Power school, and
one of two nuclear 'Prototype' Schools. The state of Florida is the
location of three major bases, NS Mayport , the Navy's fourth largest,
Jacksonville, Florida ; NAS Jacksonville , a Master Air
Anti-submarine Warfare base; and NAS Pensacola ; home of the Naval
Education and Training Command , the Naval Air Technical Training
Center that provides specialty training for enlisted aviation
personnel and is the primary flight training base for
Navy and Marine
Corps Naval Flight Officers and enlisted Naval Aircrewmen . There is
also NSA Panama City , Florida which is home to the
Navy Diving and
Salvage Training Center.
The main U.S.
Navy submarine bases on the east coast are located in
Naval Submarine Base New London in
Groton, Connecticut and NSB Kings
Kings Bay, Georgia . The
Portsmouth Naval Shipyard near
Portsmouth, New Hampshire , which repairs naval submarines. NS Great
Lakes , north of
Chicago, Illinois is the home of the Navy's boot camp
for enlisted sailors.
Navy Yard in
Washington, DC is the Navy's oldest shore
establishment and serves as a ceremonial and administrative center for
the U.S. Navy, home to the
Chief of Naval Operations , and is
headquarters for numerous commands.
WESTERN UNITED STATES AND HAWAII
Underwater Demolition Team members using the casting technique
from a speeding boat. Combat Camera Underwater Photo Team – A
Navy diver during underwater photography training off the coast of
The navy's largest complex is
Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake ,
California, which covers 1.1 million acres (4,500 km2) of land, or
approximately 1/3 of the
United States Navy's total land holdings.
Naval Base San Diego
Naval Base San Diego , California, is the main homeport of the
Pacific Fleet (although its headquarters is located in
Pearl Harbor ,
NAS North Island is located on the north side of Coronado ,
and is home to Headquarters for Naval Air Forces and Naval Air Force
Pacific, the bulk of the Pacific Fleet's helicopter squadrons, and
part of the West Coast aircraft carrier fleet. NAB Coronado is located
on the southern end of the Coronado Island and is home to the navy's
west coast SEAL teams and special boat units. NAB Coronado is also
home to the
Naval Special Warfare Center , the primary training center
The other major collection of naval bases on the west coast is in
Puget Sound , Washington . Among them, NS Everett is one of the newer
bases and the navy states that it is its most modern facility.
NAS Fallon , Nevada serves as the primary training ground for navy
strike aircrews, and is home to the
Naval Strike Air Warfare Center .
Master Jet Bases are also located at
NAS Lemoore , California and NAS
Whidbey Island , Washington, while the carrier-based airborne early
warning aircraft community and major air test activities are located
NAS Point Mugu , California. The naval presence in Hawaii is
centered on NS
Pearl Harbor , which hosts the headquarters of the
Pacific Fleet and many of its subordinate commands.
UNITED STATES TERRITORIES
_ USS Carl Vinson_ (CVN-70) pier side in
Apra Harbor ,
Guam , an island strategically located in the Western Pacific Ocean,
maintains a sizable U.S.
Navy presence, including NB
Guam . The
westernmost U.S. territory, it contains a natural deep water harbor
capable of harboring aircraft carriers in emergencies. Its naval air
station was deactivated in 1995 and its flight activities transferred
Andersen Air Force Base .
Puerto Rico in the Caribbean formerly housed NS Roosevelt Roads ,
which was shut down in 2004 shortly after the controversial closure of
the live ordnance training area on nearby Vieques Island .
The largest overseas base is the
United States Fleet Activities
Yokosuka , Japan, which serves as the home port for the navy's
largest forward-deployed fleet and is a significant base of operations
in the Western Pacific.
European operations revolve around facilities in Italy (NAS Sigonella
and Naval Computer and Telecommunications Station Naples ) with NSA
Naples as the homeport for the Sixth Fleet and Command Naval Region
Europe, Africa, Southwest Asia (CNREURAFSWA), and additional
facilities in nearby
Gaeta . There is also NS Rota in
Spain and NSA
Souda Bay in
In the Middle East, naval facilities are located almost exclusively
in countries bordering the
Persian Gulf , with NSA Bahrain serving as
the headquarters of
U.S. Naval Forces Central Command
U.S. Naval Forces Central Command and U.S. Fifth
NS Guantanamo Bay in Cuba is the oldest overseas facility and has
become known in recent years as the location of a detention camp for
suspected al-Qaeda operatives.
Main article: Equipment of the
As of 2013 , the navy operates over 280 ships, 3,650+ aircraft,
50,000 non-combat vehicles and owns 75,200 buildings on 3,300,000
acres (13,000 km2). In addition, the
Navy has more than one hundred
vessels operated by the Military
Sealift Command (MSC) crewed by a
combination of civilian contractors and a small number of uniformed
Main articles: List of
Navy ships and List of current
ships of the
Navy See also: List of currently active
United States military watercraft ,
Navy ships , and
United States ship naming conventions
The names of commissioned ships of the U.S.
Navy are prefixed with
the letters "USS", designating "
United States Ship".
Non-commissioned, civilian-manned vessels of the navy have names that
begin with "USNS", standing for "
United States Naval Ship" The names
of ships are officially selected by the secretary of the navy, often
to honor important people or places. Additionally, each ship is given
a letter-based hull classification symbol (for example, CVN or DDG) to
indicate the vessel's type and number. All ships in the navy inventory
are placed in the
Naval Vessel Register , which is part of "the Navy
List" (required by article 29 of the United Nations Convention on the
Law of the Sea). The register tracks data such as the current status
of a ship, the date of its commissioning, and the date of its
decommissioning. Vessels that are removed from the register prior to
disposal are said to be _stricken_ from the register. The navy also
maintains a reserve fleet of inactive vessels that are maintained for
reactivation in times of need.
Navy was one of the first to install nuclear reactors aboard
naval vessels; today, nuclear energy powers all active U.S. aircraft
carriers and submarines . In the case of the _Nimitz_-class carrier,
two naval reactors give the ship almost unlimited range and provide
enough electrical energy to power a city of 100,000 people. The U.S.
Navy previously operated nuclear-powered cruisers, but all have been
Navy had identified a need for 313 combat ships in early
2010s, but under its plans at the time could only afford 232 to 243.
In March 2014, the
Navy started counting self-deployable support ships
such as minesweepers, surveillance craft, and tugs in the "battle
fleet" in order to reach a count of 272 as of October 2016, and it
includes ships that have been put in "shrink wrap".
_ USS Nimitz_ (CVN-68) , a _Nimitz_-class aircraft carrier .
Main article: List of aircraft carriers of the
An aircraft carrier is typically deployed along with a host of
additional vessels, forming a carrier strike group . The supporting
ships, which usually include three or four Aegis -equipped cruisers
and destroyers, a frigate, and two attack submarines, are tasked with
protecting the carrier from air, missile, sea, and undersea threats as
well as providing additional strike capabilities themselves. Ready
logistics support for the group is provided by a combined ammunition,
oiler, and supply ship. Modern carriers are named after American
admirals and politicians, usually presidents.
Navy has a statutory requirement for a minimum of 11 aircraft
carriers. Currently there are 10 that are deployable and one, the USS
_Gerald R. Ford_ (CVN-78) , is currently undergoing extensive systems
and technologies testing until around 2021.
Amphibious Warfare Vessels
_ USS Bataan_ (LHD-5) , a _Wasp_-class amphibious assault ship .
_ USS San Antonio_ (LPD-17) , a _San Antonio_-class amphibious
transport dock . Main article: List of
Amphibious assault ships are the centerpieces of US amphibious
warfare and fulfill the same power projection role as aircraft
carriers except that their striking force centers on land forces
instead of aircraft. They deliver, command, coordinate, and fully
support all elements of a 2,200-strong
Marine Expeditionary Unit
Marine Expeditionary Unit in an
amphibious assault using both air and amphibious vehicles. Resembling
small aircraft carriers, amphibious assault ships are capable of
VTOL , tiltrotor, and rotary wing aircraft
operations. They also contain a well deck to support the use of
Landing Craft Air Cushion (LCAC) and other amphibious assault
watercraft. Recently, amphibious assault ships have begun to be
deployed as the core of an expeditionary strike group , which usually
consists of an additional amphibious transport dock and dock landing
ship for amphibious warfare and an Aegis-equipped cruiser and
destroyer, frigate, and attack submarine for group defense. Amphibious
assault ships are typically named after
World War II
World War II aircraft
Amphibious transport docks are warships that embark, transport, and
land Marines, supplies, and equipment in a supporting role during
amphibious warfare missions. With a landing platform, amphibious
transport docks also have the capability to serve as secondary
aviation support for an expeditionary group. All amphibious transport
docks can operate helicopters, LCACs, and other conventional
amphibious vehicles while the newer _San Antonio_ class of ships has
been explicitly designed to operate all three elements of the Marines'
"mobility triad": Expeditionary Fighting Vehicles (EFVs), the V-22
Osprey tiltrotor aircraft, and LCACs.
Amphibious transport docks are
named after U.S. cities, with the exception of the USS _John P.
Murtha_ (LPD-26) , named after a former Congressman and USMC Officer
and USS _Mesa Verde_ (LPD-19) , named for
Mesa Verde National Park in
The dock landing ship is a medium amphibious transport that is
designed specifically to support and operate LCACs, though it is able
to operate other amphibious assault vehicles in the United States
inventory as well. Dock landing ships are normally deployed as a
component of an expeditionary strike group's amphibious assault
contingent, operating as a secondary launch platform for LCACs. All
dock landing ships are named after cities or important places in U.S.
and U.S. Naval history.
Main article: List of cruisers of the
Navy _ USS
Port Royal_ (CG-73) , a _Ticonderoga_-class cruiser .
Cruisers are large surface combat vessels that conduct
anti-air/anti-missile warfare, surface warfare, anti-submarine
warfare, and strike operations independently or as members of a larger
task force. Modern guided missile cruisers were developed out of a
need to counter the anti-ship missile threat facing the United States
Navy. This led to the development of the
AN/SPY-1 phased array radar
and the Standard missile with the
Aegis combat system coordinating the
two. _Ticonderoga_-class cruisers were the first to be equipped with
Aegis and were put to use primarily as anti-air and anti-missile
defense in a battle force protection role. Later developments of
vertical launch systems and the Tomahawk missile gave cruisers
additional long-range land and sea strike capability, making them
capable of both offensive and defensive battle operations. The
_Ticonderoga_ class is the only active class of cruiser. All cruisers
in this class are named after battles.
Main article: List of destroyers of the
Navy _ USS
Zumwalt_ (DDG-1000) , a _Zumwalt_ -class stealth guided missile
Destroyers are multi-mission medium surface ships capable of
sustained performance in anti-air, anti-submarine, anti-ship, and
offensive strike operations. Like cruisers, guided missile destroyers
are primarily focused on surface strikes using Tomahawk missiles and
fleet defense through Aegis and the Standard missile. Destroyers
additionally specialize in anti-submarine warfare and are equipped
with VLA rockets and LAMPS Mk III Sea Hawk helicopters to deal with
underwater threats. When deployed with a carrier strike group or
expeditionary strike group, destroyers and their fellow Aegis-equipped
cruisers are primarily tasked with defending the fleet while providing
secondary strike capabilities. With very few exceptions, destroyers
are named after U.S. Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard heroes.
Frigates And Littoral Combat Ships
Main article: List of frigates of the
Navy See also:
Littoral combat ship _ USS Independence_ (LCS-2) , a Littoral
combat ship . _ USS Freedom_ (LCS-1) underway in special naval
Modern U.S. frigates mainly perform anti-submarine warfare for
carrier and expeditionary strike groups and provide armed escort for
supply convoys and merchant shipping. They are designed to protect
friendly ships against hostile submarines in low to medium threat
environments, using torpedoes and LAMPS helicopters. Independently,
frigates are able to conduct counterdrug missions and other maritime
interception operations. As in the case of destroyers, frigates are
named after U.S. Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard heroes. As of
autumn 2015, the U.S.
Navy has retired its most recent class of
frigates, and expects that by 2020 the Littoral Combat Ships (LCS)
will assume many of the duties the frigate had with the fleet. The LCS
is a class of relatively small surface vessels intended for operations
in the littoral zone (close to shore). It was "envisioned to be a
networked, agile, stealthy surface combatant capable of defeating
anti-access and asymmetric threats in the littorals". They have the
capabilities of a small assault transport, including a flight deck and
hangar for housing two helicopters, a stern ramp for operating small
boats, and the cargo volume and payload to deliver a small assault
force with fighting vehicles to a roll-on/roll-off port facility. The
ship is easy to reconfigure for different roles, including
anti-submarine warfare , mine countermeasures , anti-surface warfare ,
intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, homeland defense,
maritime intercept, special operations, and logistics, all by swapping
mission-specific modules as needed. The LCS program is still
relatively new as of 2015 with only a few active ships, but the navy
has announced plans for up to 32 ships. (See: List of littoral combat
ships ) The navy has announced that a further 20 vessels to be built
after that will be redesignated as 'frigates'.
* In addition, USS _Constitution_ , commissioned in 1797 and one of
the original six frigates of the
Navy , remains in
commission at the Charlestown
Navy Yard in Boston. She serves as a
tribute to the heritage of the Navy, and occasionally sails for
commemorative events such as Independence Day and various victories
War of 1812 . _Constitution_ is currently the oldest
commissioned warship afloat. HMS _Victory_ is older, and in
commission, but is in permanent drydock.
Mine Countermeasures Ships
Main article: List of mine warfare vessels of the
_ USS Warrior_ (MCM-10) in port
Mine countermeasures vessels are a combination of minehunters , a
naval vessel that actively detects and destroys individual naval mines
, and minesweepers , which clear mined areas as a whole, without prior
detection of the mines. The navy has approximately a dozen of these in
active service, but the mine countermeasure (MCM) role is also being
assumed by the incoming classes of littoral combat ships. MCM vessels
have mostly legacy names of previous US
Navy ships, especially
Main article: List of patrol vessels of the
USS Typhoon_ (PC-5) departing
Naval Amphibious Base Little Creek in
A patrol boat is a relatively small naval vessel generally designed
for coastal defense duties. There have been many designs for patrol
boats, though the navy currently only has a single class. They may be
operated by a nation's navy or coast guard, and may be intended for
marine ("blue water ") and/or estuarine or river ("brown water ")
Navy has approximately a dozen in active service,
which are mainly used in the littoral regions of the
Persian Gulf ,
but have also been used for home port patrols and drug interdiction
missions. The navy's current class of patrol boats have names based on
Main article: Submarines in the
Navy _ USS
Kentucky_ (SSBN-737) , an _Ohio_-class ballistic missile submarine .
_ USS Virginia_ (SSN-774) , a _Virginia_ -class attack submarine .
All current and planned U.S.
Navy submarines are nuclear-powered, as
only nuclear propulsion allows for the combination of stealth and long
duration, high-speed sustained underwater movement that makes modern
nuclear submarines so vital to a modern blue-water navy. The U.S. Navy
operates three types: ballistic missile submarines , guided missile
submarines , and attack submarines . U.S.
Navy (nuclear) ballistic
missile submarines carry the stealthiest leg of the U.S. strategic
triad (the other legs are the land-based U.S. strategic missile force
and the air-based U.S. strategic bomber force). These submarines have
only one mission: to carry and, if called upon, to launch the Trident
nuclear missile . The primary missions of attack and guided missile
submarines in the U.S.
Navy are peacetime engagement, surveillance and
intelligence, special operations, precision strikes, and control of
the seas. To these, attack submarines also add the battlegroup
operations mission. Attack and guided missile submarines have several
tactical missions, including sinking ships and other subs, launching
cruise missiles , gathering intelligence, and assisting in special
As with other classes of naval vessels, most U.S. submarines (or
"boats") are named according to specific conventions. The boats of the
current U.S. ballistic missile submarine class, _Ohio_-class , are
named after U.S. states. As the four current U.S. guided missile
submarines are converted _Ohio_-class boats, they have retained their
U.S. state names. The members of the oldest currently-commissioned
attack submarine class, the _Los Angeles_ class , are typically named
for cities. The follow-on _Seawolf_-class ' three
submarines—_Seawolf_, _Connecticut_ and _Jimmy Carter_—share no
consistent naming scheme. With the current _Virginia_-class class
attack submarines, the U.S.
Navy has extended the _Ohio_ class'
state-based naming scheme to these submarines. Attack submarines prior
to the _Los Angeles_ class were named for denizens of the deep, while
pre-_Ohio_-class ballistic missile submarines were named for famous
Americans and foreigners with notable connections to the United
Navy F/A-18F Super Hornets . Main articles: List of
United States naval aircraft and List of military aircraft of the
United States (naval) See also: List of
squadrons and List of active
United States military aircraft
Carrier-based aircraft are able to strike air, sea, and land targets
far from a carrier strike group while protecting friendly forces from
enemy aircraft, ships, and submarines. In peacetime, aircraft's
ability to project the threat of sustained attack from a mobile
platform on the seas gives
United States leaders significant
diplomatic and crisis-management options.
provide logistics support to maintain the navy's readiness and,
through helicopters, supply platforms with which to conduct search and
rescue , special operations , anti-submarine warfare (ASW), and
anti-surface warfare (ASuW).
Navy began to research the use of aircraft at sea in the
1910s, with Lieutenant Theodore G. "Spuds" Ellyson becoming the first
naval aviator on 28 January 1911, and commissioned its first aircraft
carrier, USS _Langley_ (CV-1) , in 1922.
United States naval aviation
fully came of age in World War II, when it became clear following the
Attack on Pearl Harbor , the
Battle of the Coral Sea
Battle of the Coral Sea , and the Battle
of Midway that aircraft carriers and the planes that they carried had
replaced the battleship as the greatest weapon on the seas. Leading
navy aircraft in
World War II
World War II included the
Grumman F4F Wildcat , the
Grumman F6F Hellcat
Grumman F6F Hellcat , the Chance
Vought F4U Corsair
Vought F4U Corsair , the Douglas SBD
Dauntless , and the
Grumman TBF Avenger
Grumman TBF Avenger .
Navy aircraft also played a
significant role in conflicts during the following
Cold War years,
F-4 Phantom II and the
F-14 Tomcat becoming military icons of
the era. The navy's current primary fighter and attack airplanes are
the multi-mission F/A-18C/D Hornet and its newer cousin, the F/A-18E/F
Super Hornet . The
F-35 Lightning II is presently under development
and was scheduled to replace the C and D versions of the Hornet
beginning in 2012. Initial operational capability of the F-35C is now
expected to be February 2019. The
Navy is also looking to eventually
replace its F/A-18E/F Super Hornets with the
Aircraft Investment Plan sees naval aviation growing from 30
percent of current aviation forces to half of all procurement funding
over the next three decades.
Main article: List of
Navy shipboard weapons systems are almost entirely
focused on missiles, both as a weapon and as a threat. In an offensive
role, missiles are intended to strike targets at long distances with
accuracy and precision. Because they are unmanned weapons, missiles
allow for attacks on heavily defended targets without risk to human
pilots. Land strikes are the domain of the
BGM-109 Tomahawk , which
was first deployed in the 1980s and is continually being updated to
increase its capabilities. For anti-ship strikes, the navy's dedicated
missile is the
Harpoon Missile . To defend against enemy missile
attack, the navy operates a number of systems that are all coordinated
by the Aegis combat system. Medium-long range defense is provided by
the Standard Missile 2 , which has been deployed since the 1980s. The
Standard missile doubles as the primary shipboard anti-aircraft weapon
and is undergoing development for use in theater ballistic missile
defense. Short range defense against missiles is provided by the
Phalanx CIWS and the more recently developed RIM-162 Evolved Sea
Sparrow Missile . In addition to missiles, the navy employs Mark 46
and Mark 50 torpedoes and various types of naval mines. Aviation
Ordnancemen loading GBU-12 bombs in 2005.
Naval fixed-wing aircraft employ much of the same weapons as the
United States Air Force for both air-to-air and air-to-surface combat.
Air engagements are handled by the heat-seeking Sidewinder and the
radar guided AMRAAM missiles along with the
M61 Vulcan cannon for
close range dogfighting. For surface strikes, navy aircraft utilize a
combination of missiles, smart bombs, and dumb bombs. On the list of
available missiles are the Maverick , SLAM-ER and JSOW . Smart bombs
include the GPS-guided
JDAM and the laser-guided
Unguided munitions such as dumb bombs and cluster bombs make up the
rest of the weapons deployed by fixed-wing aircraft.
Rotary aircraft weapons are focused on anti-submarine warfare (ASW)
and light to medium surface engagements. To combat submarines,
helicopters use Mark 46 and Mark 50 torpedoes. Against small
watercraft, they utilize Hellfire and Penguin air to surface missiles.
Helicopters also employ various types of mounted anti-personnel
machine guns, including the M60 , M240 , GAU-16/A , and GAU-17/A .
Nuclear weapons in the U.S.
Navy arsenal are deployed through
ballistic missile submarines and aircraft. The _Ohio_-class submarine
carries the latest iteration of the
Trident missile , a three-stage,
submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) with
MIRV capability; the
current Trident II (D5) version is expected to be in service past
2020. The navy's other nuclear weapon is the air-deployed B61 nuclear
bomb . The B61 is a thermonuclear device that can be dropped by strike
aircraft such as the
F/A-18 Hornet and Super Hornet at high speed from
a large range of altitudes. It can be released through free-fall or
parachute and can be set to detonate in the air or on the ground.
U.S. Naval Jack Former U.S. Naval Jack
The current naval jack of the
United States is the First
Navy Jack ,
traditionally regarded as having been used during the American
Revolutionary War. On 31 May 2002, Secretary of the
Navy Gordon R.
England directed all U.S. naval ships to fly the First
Navy Jack for
the duration of the "
War on Terror ". Many ships chose to shift colors
later that year on the first anniversary of the September 11, 2001
attacks . The previous naval jack was a blue field with 50 white
stars, identical to the canton of the ensign (the flag of the United
States ) both in appearance and size, and remains in use with vessels
U.S. Coast Guard and National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration . A jack of similar design was used in 1794, though
with 13 stars arranged in a 3–2–3–2–3 pattern. When a ship is
moored or anchored, the jack is flown from the bow of the ship while
the ensign is flown from the stern . When underway, the ensign is
raised on the mainmast. The First Naval Jack, however, has always been
flown on the oldest ship in the active American fleet, which is
currently USS _Blue Ridge_ (LCC-19) .
Main article: List of
Many past and present
United States historical figures have served in
the navy. Notable officers include
John Paul Jones , John Barry
Navy officer and first flag officer of the United States
Edward Preble ,
James Lawrence (whose last words "don't give
up the ship" are memorialized in
Bancroft Hall at the United States
Naval Academy ), Stephen Decatur, Jr. ,
David Farragut , David Dixon
Oliver Hazard Perry , Commodore Matthew Perry (whose Black
Ships forced the opening of Japan ),
George Dewey (the only person in
the history of the
United States to have attained the rank of Admiral
of the Navy), and the officers who attained the rank of Fleet Admiral
during World War II:
William D. Leahy ,
Ernest J. King , Chester W.
Nimitz , and
William F. Halsey, Jr. .
The first American president who served in the navy was John F.
Kennedy (who commanded the famous _PT-109 _). Others included Lyndon
B. Johnson ,
Richard Nixon ,
Gerald Ford ,
Jimmy Carter , and George
H. W. Bush . Both
Theodore Roosevelt and
Franklin D. Roosevelt were
the assistant secretary of the navy prior to their presidencies. Many
members of Congress served in the navy, notably U.S. Senators Bob
John McCain , and
John Kerry . Other notable former members
of the U.S.
Navy include astronauts, entertainers, authors and
Military of the United States portal
* Disestablished commands of the
* Ohio Replacement
Spearhead-class expeditionary fast transport
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