Countries by number of aircraft carriers

Lack of map.
Interactive map of aircraft carriers in each country. Includes helicopter carriers. Supported countries only.
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If we were to describe aircraft carriers very briefly, we would say that aircraft carrier is a warship that serve as mobile seaborne airfields, designed primarily for the purpose of conducting combat operations by Carrier-based aircraft which engage in attacks against airborne, surface, sub-surface and shore targets. Aircraft carriers are expensive to build and are critical assets. Aircraft carriers have evolved from converted cruisers to nuclear-powered warships. Aircraft carriers may be classified according to the type of aircraft they carry and their operational assignments.

Of course we should bear in mind that there is more to add regarding aircraft carriers. This class of ships has one particular goal to do, which is to serve as a landing and starting spot for all the aircrafts. First ships of this class were built at the end of the First World War. However, the most important part of their significance was 20 years later, during the Second World War. As one can guess, one of the most important places of usage was in the Pacific. There, the United States had to fight with Japanese and their suicide planes. Quite often the so called kamikaze were used to destroy large vessels, like for example aircraft carriers that were threatening the Japanese islands as well as Japan itself.

Although their role in modern navy is quite important, there is only one nation that can boast with larger fleet of aircraft carriers. As you can guess, these are United States. The rest countries own single aircraft impact carriers. Besides that, there are also countries that decided to construct light aircraft carriers that cannot serve as a landing spot for all the aircrafts. We should also remember that when aircraft carrier goes out on the mission, it is always escorted by a fleet of warships of different kind.

Of course we should bear in mind that there are many different types of carriers. For example, besides classic aircraft carriers, we can also encounter amphibious assault ships, anti-submarine warfare carrier, and some other classes. Carriers of this type can be also used for helicopters, balloons, or even seaplanes!

An interesting fact is that the most modern vessels are even nuclear-powered. One of such examples is American carrier USS Enterprise, which was at the same time the longest naval vessel ever built and one of the heaviest in the world. It was twice as long as Titanic. It only shows how gigantic, and sadly, costly and time-demanding in constructing these vessels really are.


Number of aircraft carriers in each country

Chart showing aircraft carriers by country