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JDS Hyūga, a Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force Hyūga-class helicopter destroyer

A helicopter carrier is a type of aircraft carrier whose primary purpose is to operate helicopters, and has a large flight deck that occupies a substantial part of the deck, which can extend the full length of the ship like HMS Ocean[1] of the Royal Navy (RN), or extend only partway, usually aft, as in the Soviet Navy's Moskva class or in the Chinese Navy's Type 0891A. It often also has a hangar deck for the storage of aircraft.

Pure helicopter carriers are difficult to define in the 21st century. The advent of STOVL aircraft such as the Harrier Jump Jet, and now the F-35, have complicated the classification; the United States Navy's Wasp class, for instance, carries six to eight Harriers as well as over 20 helicopters. Only smaller carriers unable to operate the Harrier and older pre-Harrier-era carriers can be regarded as true helicopter carriers. In many cases, other carriers, able to operate STOVL aircraft, are classified as "light aircraft carriers". Other vessels, such as the Wasp class, are also capable of embarking troops such as marines and landing them ashore; they are classified as amphibious assault ships.

Helicopter carriers have been used as anti-submarine warfare carriers and amphibious assault ships.

HMS Hermes and two of her sisters were 22,000 ton fleet carriers converted to "commando carriers" only able to operate helicopters. Hermes was later converted to a STOVL carrier.

Helicopter carriers by country

Country Navy In service In reserve Under construction
 Algeria  Algerian National Navy 1 0 0
 Australia  Royal Australian Navy 2 0 0
 Brazil Brazilian Navy 1 0 0
 China  People's Liberation Army Navy 2 1 1 (4 planned)
 Egypt  Egyptian Navy 2 0 0
 France  French Navy 3 0 0
 India  Indian Navy 0 0 0 (4 planned total)
 Italy  Italian Navy 3 0 1
 Japan  Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force 4 0 0
 Russia  Russian Navy 0 0 2 (3 planned total)
 South Korea  Republic of Korea Navy 2 0 0
 Spain  Royal Spanish Navy 1 0 0
 Thailand  Royal Thai Navy 1 0 0
 Turkey  Turkish Navy 0 0 1
 United States  United States Navy 9 3 1 (11 planned total)

Helicopter carriers

Helicopter carriers currently in use

Country Name (Hull number) Length Tonnage (mt) Class Propulsion Type Classification Commission
 Algeria Kalaat Béni Abbès (L-474) 142.90 142.90 m (468.8 ft) 8.800 8,800 mt San Giorgio Conventional VTOL Landing Helicopter Dock 4 September 2014 [2]
 Australia Canberra (L02) 230.82 230.82 m (757.3 ft) 027500 27,500 mt Canberra
(modified Juan Carlos I)
Conventional STOVL Landing Helicopter Dock 28 November 2014
 Australia Adelaide (L01) 230.82 230.82 m (757.3 ft) 027500 27,500 mt Canberra
(modified Juan Carlos I)
Conventional STOVL Landing Helicopter Dock 4 December 2015
 Brazil NAM Atlântico (A140) 203.4 203.4 m (667 ft) 021500 21,500 mt Ocean Conventional VTOL Multipurpose Helicopter Carrier 29 June 2018[3]
 China Type 75 Hainan (31) 237 m (778 ft) 40,000 tonnes (full load) Type 75 (NATO reporting name Yushen-class) Conventional VTOL Landing Helicopter Dock 23 April 2021[4]
 China Type 75 Guangxi (32) 237 m (778 ft) 40,000 tonnes (full load) Type 75 (NATO reporting name Yushen-class) Conventional VTOL Landing Helicopter Dock 26 December 2021 [5] [6] [7]
 China Type 0891A Shichang (82) 125 125 m (410 ft) 09500 9,500 mt Shichang Conventional VTOL Training Ship January 1997
 Egypt Gamal Abdel Nasser (L1010) 199 199 m (653 ft) 021300 21,300 mt Mistral Conventional VTOL Landing Helicopter Dock 2 June 2016[8]
 Egypt Anwar El Sadat (L1020) 199 199 m (653 ft) 021300 21,300 mt Mistral Conventional VTOL Landing Helicopter Dock 16 September 2016
 France Mistral (L9013) 199 199 m (653 ft) 021300 21,300 mt Mistral Conventional VTOL Landing Helicopter Dock December 2005
 France Tonnerre (L9014) 199 199 m (653 ft) 021300 21,300 mt Mistral Conventional VTOL Landing Helicopter Dock December 2006
 France Dixmude (L9015) 199 199 m (653 ft) 021300 21,300 mt Mistral Conventional VTOL Landing Helicopter Dock December 2011
 Italy San Giorgio (L-9892) 133 133 m (436 ft) 8.000 8,000 mt San Giorgio Conventional VTOL Landing Helicopter Dock 13 February 1988
 Italy San Marco (L-9893) 133 133 m (436 ft) 8.000 8,000 mt San Giorgio Conventional VTOL Landing Helicopter Dock 14 May 1988
 Italy San Giusto (L-9894) 133 133 m (436 ft) 8.300 8,300 mt San Giorgio Conventional VTOL Landing Helicopter Dock 14 April 1994
 Japan JS Kaga (DDH-184) 248 248 m (814 ft) 027000 27,000 mt Izumo Conventional VTOL Helicopter destroyer 22 March 2017
 Japan JS Izumo (DDH-183) 248 248 m (814 ft) 027000 27,000 mt Izumo Conventional VTOL Helicopter destroyer 25 March 2015
 Japan JS Hyūga (DDH-181) 197 197 m (646 ft)[9] 013950 19,000 mt Hyūga Conventional VTOL Helicopter destroyer 18 March 2009
 Japan JS Ise (DDH-182) 197 197 m (646 ft)[9] 013950 19,000 mt Hyūga Conventional VTOL Helicopter destroyer 16 March 2011
 South Korea Dokdo (LPH-6111) 199 199 m (653 ft) 018800 18,800 mt Dokdo Conventional VTOL Landing Platform Helicopter 3 July 2007
 South Korea Marado (LPH-6112) 199 199 m (653 ft) 018800 18,800 mt Dokdo Conventional VTOL Landing Platform Helicopter 28 June 2021
 Spain Juan Carlos I (L-61) 230.82 230.82 m (757.3 ft) 027079 27,079 mt Juan Carlos I Conventional STOVL Landing Helicopter Dock 30 September 2010
 Thailand Chakri Naruebet (CVH-911) 182.65 182.65 m (599.2 ft) 11486 11,486 mt Príncipe de Asturias Conventional STOVL Helicopter Carrier (Light aircraft carrier) 27 March 1997
 US America (LHA-6) 257.3 257.3 m (844 ft) 045000 45,000 mt America[10] Conventional STOVL Landing Helicopter Assault 11 October 2014[11]
 US Tripoli (LHA-7) 257.3 257.3 m (844 ft) 045000 45,000 mt America Conventional STOVL Landing Helicopter Assault 15 July 2020
 US Wasp (LHD-1) 257 257 m (843 ft) 040532 40,532 mt Wasp[10] Conventional STOVL Landing Helicopter Dock 29 July 1989
 US Essex (LHD-2) 257 257 m (843 ft) 040650 40,650 mt Wasp Conventional STOVL Landing Helicopter Dock 17 October 1992
 US Kearsarge (LHD-3) 257 257 m (843 ft) 040500 40,500 mt Wasp Conventional STOVL Landing Helicopter Dock 16 October 1993
 US Boxer (LHD-4) 257 257 m (843 ft) 040722 40,722 mt Wasp Conventional STOVL Landing Helicopter Dock 11 February 1995
 US Bataan (LHD-5) 257 257 m (843 ft) 040358 40,358 mt Wasp Conventional STOVL Landing Helicopter Dock 20 September 1997
 US Iwo Jima (LHD-7) 257 257 m (843 ft) 040530 40,530 mt Wasp Conventional STOVL Landing Helicopter Dock 30 June 2001
 US Makin Island (LHD-8) 258 258 m (846 ft) 041649 41,649 mt Wasp Conventional STOVL Landing Helicopter Dock 24 October 2009

Retired helicopter carriers

See also

References

  1. ^ "HMS Ocean (LPH01) Helicopter Carrier". Naval Technology. 2011-06-15. Retrieved 2014-04-20.
  2. ^ ""Kalaat Beni-Abbes" Delivered at Muggiano Shipyard - The new amphibious vessel for the Algerian Navy" (Press release). Fincantieri. 4 September 2014. Archived from the original on 9 December 2018. Retrieved 8 December 2018.
  3. ^ "Brazil commissions helicopter carrier". www.janes.com. 29 June 2018.
  4. ^ Vavasseur, Xavier (2021-04-24). "China Commissions a Type 055 DDG, a Type 075 LHD and a Type 094 SSBN in a Single Day". Naval News. Retrieved 2021-04-25.
  5. ^ "12月26日正式服役! 4萬噸"廣西艦"入列東部戰區,16個月創造奇蹟,預示關鍵時間點,針對台海詭譎,一錘定音!【一號哨所】". YouTube.
  6. ^ "New pictures released of Chinese Type 075 LHD Guangxi". Navy Recognition. Retrieved 2021-12-09.
  7. ^ "China's Third Type 075 LHD Starts Sea Trials". 28 November 2021.
  8. ^ "DCNS delivers the second Mistral-class helicopter carrier to the Egyptian Navy, the LHD Anwar El Sadat". 16 September 2016.
  9. ^ a b "Hyuga Class". JMSDF Gallery (in Japanese). JMSDF. Archived from the original on 10 March 2015. Retrieved 27 February 2015.
  10. ^ a b World Wide Aircraft Carriers
  11. ^ "America 'Sails Away' for Maiden Transit to San Diego Homeport". United States Navy. 10 October 2014.
  12. ^ "BBC News – Warship HMS Illustrious starts sea trials". Bbc.co.uk. 2011-06-17. Retrieved 2014-04-20.

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