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USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63)



The history of  USS Kitty Hawk closely parallels the course of naval aviation over the past 37 years.  Built in Camden, NJ, Kitty Hawk was heralded as the first in a new class of "super carrier" at her commissioning at the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard on April 29, 1961.
The 86,000-ton ship departed her homeport of San Diego on her first Western Pacific (WESTPAC) deployment in 1962. Since that time, Kitty Hawk and a variety of Carrier Air Wings have completed 18 deployments in support of operations including Vietnam, the Iranian hostage crisis, Operation Restore Hope in Somalia and air strikes against Iraq. As leader of the joint, coalition offensive strike launched in response to increasing Iraqi violations of United Nations sanctions.
Kitty Hawk underwent three overhauls in the Bremerton, Wash., Naval Shipyard in 1977, 1982 and 1998. The ship's most significant maintenance period, however, was a Service Life Extension Program (SLEP) in the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard beginning in 1987. That rigorous four-year overhaul added an estimated 20 years to the planned 30-year life of the ship. Kitty Hawk displayed the long reach of carrier aviation by completing a world cruise on the way to Philadelphia and returned by rounding the southernmost tip of South America.
The Hawk set sail on its 17th deployment on June 24, 1994. During the six-month cruise, Kitty Hawk, and Carrier Air Wing Fifteen, under the direction of the Commander, Cruiser Destroyer Group FIVE, provided a stabilizing influence in the Western Pacific during a time of great tension in the Far East.
Soon after Kitty Hawk's return from deployment, the ship was awarded the Battle Efficiency Award, or Battle "E," given yearly to the best carrier in the Pacific Fleet.
In October, Kitty Hawk welcomed aboard the proud members and imposing airpower of Carrier Air Wing Eleven, fresh off a deployment to the Persian Gulf aboard the USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72).
Kitty Hawk and Carrier Air Wing Eleven, refined their teamwork during workups, enjoying a very successful participation in Exercise Rim of the Pacific '96, a multi-national exercise taking place around the Hawaiian Islands involving the maritime forces of Canada, Japan, South Korea, Chile and Australia, in preparation for deployment in October 1996.
Kitty Hawk began its 18th deployment Oct. 11, 1997. En route to the Arabian Gulf, the Kitty Hawk/CVW-11 team made port calls in Hong Kong and Singapore.  Christmas was celebrated import Bahrain, and two Gulf port calls were made to Jebel Ali, U.A.E.    Returning from a successful tour at the "tip of the spear," the crew enjoyed liberty in Freemantle, Australia and Hobart, Tasmania.  After a brief ft in Hawaii,   Kitty Hawk returned to San Diego April 11, 1997.
Throughout her illustrious career, Kitty Hawk has demonstrated the range, sustainability, flexibility and capability that are the hallmark of carrier aviation. With her excellent material condition and top-notch crew, Kitty Hawk will serve the United States with distinction well into the next century.

General characteristics

Builder New York Shipbuilding
Number of steam boilers Eight
Number of steam turbine engines Four, General Electric
Thrust 276,170 HP 205,940 kW
Number of propellers Four
Diameter of propeller 21 ft 6.4 m
Fuel capacity 4,000,000 gallons 15,142 000 lt
Length 1,065 ft 324.6 m
Width of flight deck 273 ft 83.2 m
Height above waterline 201 ft 61.3 m
Draft 36 ft 11 m
Average Displacement 86,000 US tons 78,018 t
Crew ship 2,800
airwing 2,700
Speed ±30 knots 55.6 km/h
Commissioned April 29, 1961
Total cost $400 millions (1961 dollars)
Anchors Two
Weight of anchors 66,140 lb each 30,000 kg each
Length of anchor chain 1,080 ft 329 m
Weight of chain links 360 lb each 163 kg each
Aircrafts ±75
Airwing F-14 Tomcat fighter
F/A-18 Hornet multirole aircraft
A-6E Intruder attack aircraft (incl. few tankers KA-6D)
S-3A/B Viking antisubmarine aircraft
E-2C Hawkeye early warning and control aircraft
SH-3H Sea King antisubmarine helicopter
C-2A Greyhound transport aircraft
Number of catapults Four, steam-powered
Length of catapult 263 ft 80.2 m
Arresting gear Four
Area of flight deck 4.1 acres 16,592 sq. m
Area of hangar bays 1.6 acres 6,475 sq. m
Aircraft elevators Four
Elevator lifting capacity 130,000 lb 58,967 kg
Armament Three Sea Sparrow missiles launchers (eight missiles each), four Phalanx CWIS mounts, nine .50-cal gun mounts (2,000-yard effective range), two M-60 gun mounts (650-yard effective range).

Miscellaneous
Total number of decks & levels 8 decks and 11 levels
Electrical system capacity 14.000,000 W
Doctors and surgeons Four
Hospital beds 65
Dentists Five
Lawyers Two
Chaplains Three
Total number of compartments and spaces 2,400 plus
Ship's stores Four
Barber shops Two
Post Office One
Laundry One
Telephone 2,400
Closed-circuit television Six channels
Average annual payroll $63 millions
Meals served with air wing 17,000 plus
Eggs served with air wing 9,600 - 12,000
Milk consumed per day 400 - 600 gallons (1,514 - 2,271 lt)
Loaves of bread baked per day 800 - 1,000
Water distilled per day 380,000 gallons (14,385 hl)
Pounds of mail processed per day 1,500 lb (680 kg)


Jirka Wagner

 

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Last updated 01.01.2017