U.S. Navy’s priciest carrier has problems with aircraft takeoff & landing systems

Photo Courtesy: US Navy

The U.S. Navy’s priciest aircraft carrier, USS Gerald R. Ford, has still been facing technological problems since her commissioning in 2017. The $13.2 billion worthing carrier’s defects include problems getting jets off the deck and issues with the landing systems.

The issues on the USS Gerald R. Ford “remain consistent” with those from previous years, according to a Pentagon assessment obtained by Bloomberg News.

“Poor or unknown reliability of new technology systems critical for flight operations,” including the carriers’ electromagnetic launch system worth $3.5 billion could affect its ability to generate sorties, Bloomberg reported, citing the assessment.

Another criticisms about the supercarrier are the latency of her delivery and her cost exceeding expectations as well.

According to an article published by Geopolitics, as of the end of 2020, the U.S. has issued two important documents on the naval power: U.S. naval strategy titled “Advantage at Sea“, and a report by Congressional Research Service on China Naval Modernization. The naval strategy titled “Advantage at Sea” is a document prepared jointly by the U.S. Navy, the U.S. Coast Guard, and the U.S. Marine Corps, as in the case of the previous two strategies. The most distinct feature of the document is that it is much of a crisis/conflict strategy rather than a peacetime one.

The 2020 naval strategy clearly defines China and Russia as rivals and even adversaries. It places China in an exceptional position among these two, given its economic and military capacity. It clearly states that China is the most important and long-term strategic threat to the United States’ unfettered access to and dominance in the world oceans. The strategy includes this issue with the following statement: “We prioritize competition with China due to its growing economic and military strength, increasing aggressiveness, and demonstrated intent to dominate its regional waters and remake the international order in its favour.”

As a result, the 2020 naval strategy clearly states that the United States needs aircraft carriers to effectively fight China at sea. As the Navy’s priciest aircraft carrier, the USS Gerald R. Ford needs to have its problems solved as soon as possible and should be operational with full-capacity.

USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) during sea trials (US Navy)

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