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Increasing Aircraft Carrier Forward Presence

Increasing Aircraft Carrier Forward Presence: Changing the Length of the Maintenance Cycle

Roland J. Yardley
James G. Kallimani
John F. Schank
Clifford A. Grammich
Copyright Date: 2008
Edition: 1
Published by: RAND Corporation
Pages: 90
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  • Book Info
    Increasing Aircraft Carrier Forward Presence
    Book Description:

    The U.S. Navy's aircraft carrier fleet must meet the forward presence requirements of theater commanders. With a decreasing fleet size, planners must balance the timing of maintenance, training, and deployment with presence and surge demands. Evaluating multiple one- and two-deployment scenarios per cycle, RAND examines the feasibility of different cycle lengths, their effect on carrier forward presence, and their impact on shipyard workloads.

    eISBN: 978-0-8330-4595-9
    Subjects: Political Science, Technology

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-ii)
  2. Preface
    (pp. iii-iv)
  3. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  4. Figures
    (pp. vii-viii)
  5. Tables
    (pp. ix-x)
  6. Summary
    (pp. xi-xvi)
  7. Acknowledgments
    (pp. xvii-xviii)
  8. Abbreviations
    (pp. xix-xx)
  9. CHAPTER ONE Introduction
    (pp. 1-4)

    The U.S. Navy currently maintains a fleet of 11 aircraft carriers. These ships, which are among the most powerful and versatile elements of U.S. naval forces, allow the Navy to undertake a wide variety of tasks. These tasks include bringing airpower to bear against opponents, deterring adversaries, engaging friends and allies, providing humanitarian assistance, and other, evolving missions the military is likely undertake in coming years.¹

    Carriers, like all U.S. Navy ships, operate on a cycle that includes training to achieve readiness goals and then sustaining high readiness levels for a period of time. A deployment to a forward theater...

  10. CHAPTER TWO Past, Current, and Potential Carrier Cycles
    (pp. 5-20)

    Over the next two decades, the number of aircraft carriers in the Navy’s fleet will vary between 10 and 12. The ability of these carriers to deploy or be deployed will, as noted, depend in part on their operational and maintenance cycles. Below, we describe the current and planned fleet of carriers. We then discuss the evolution of maintenance cycles forNimitz-class carriers, including how their maintenance policies and operational cycles have varied. We also discuss some potential cycles for evaluation. The technical feasibility of these cycles is considered in subsequent chapters.

    Table 2.1 lists current and planned vessels in...

  11. CHAPTER THREE The Impact of Different Cycles on Operational Availability
    (pp. 21-30)

    The six cycles we examine have various effects on the operational availability of the fleet. In particular, as cycle length increases, so does deployability; however, the proportion of time deployed decreases. In this chapter, we examine the effects of each cycle on operational availability, first addressing the metrics for a notional carrier and then for the current and planned carrier fleet.

    Given the assumptions presented in Chapter Two, there is a direct relationship between cycle length and the percentage of time that a carrier is either deployed or capable of deploying in 30 days (this status represents the “6” in...

  12. CHAPTER FOUR The Impact of Different Cycles on the Maintenance Industrial Base
    (pp. 31-48)

    Our analysis in previous chapters describes the varied effects of each of the six cycles on the operational availability of the fleet. In this chapter, we examine the potential impact of each cycle on the maintenance industrial base and the costs of depot maintenance for carriers. We study the ways in which each cycle could affect the total maintenance workload over the life of aNimitz-class carrier, how resulting workloads would be distributed over depot maintenance availabilities, and how workloads could affect the demand for labor at Norfolk Naval Shipyard (NNSY) and Puget Sound Naval Shipyard (PSNSY), the two Navy...

  13. CHAPTER FIVE Findings and Recommendations
    (pp. 49-54)

    The depot maintenance program forNimitz-class aircraft carriers has changed several times since the USSNimitzwas commissioned in 1975. After the EOC, theNimitzclass was transitioned to the IMP in 1994. Like the EOC, the IMP used a 24-month schedule for depot availabilities. However, the IMP level-loaded the workloads across those availabilities to improve the materiel condition of the carriers and to avoid the workload and funding spikes of the EOC. The FRP, instituted in 2003, modified the training and readiness of the carrier fleet to increase its ability to respond to emerging crises. It also increased the...

  14. APPENDIX Workload Graphs for the Norfolk and Puget Sound Naval Shipyards
    (pp. 55-66)
  15. Bibliography
    (pp. 67-70)