A Look at Where the U.S. Navy’s 11 Aircraft Carriers Are Now

The Navy is weighing what to do about the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower aircraft carrier, which has been battling Houthi rebel attacks on shipping in the Red Sea for nearly nine months. The question is how to replicate the carrier’s combat power if the ship returns home.

The service has 11 nuclear-powered aircraft carriers. Generally, they are getting ready to deploy, are deployed or have come off deployment and have gone in for maintenance and repairs.

The carriers have a lifespan of about 50 years, and halfway through they undergo a major overhaul of their nuclear and other systems, which can take several years.

Here’s a look at where the Navy’s carriers are now:


USS Dwight D. Eisenhower — Based in Norfolk, Virginia, and in the Red Sea, it left Norfolk on Oct. 14, 2023. Has been extended twice.

USS George Washington — It is off the coast of Chile, sailing from Norfolk to San Diego and then on to Japan, where it will be deployed, replacing the USS Ronald Reagan.

USS Theodore Roosevelt — Based in San Diego, it has been deployed in Indo-Pacific Command since January and is in the South China Sea.

USS Ronald Reagan — It has been the carrier deployed in Japan. It is on patrol in the Philippine Sea and will be going to San Diego.

Preparing to deploy

USS Harry S. Truman — It is based off the coast of Norfolk in pre-deployment workups. It is about halfway through its training for deployment and doing workups with the strike group. It is expected to deploy in October/November.

USS Carl Vinson — It is in the port in San Diego and is in pre-deployment workups. It will go to the large, multinational military exercise known as the Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) in July and deploy into Pacific Command late in the year.

USS Abraham Lincoln — It is based in San Diego and has just finished its final composite unit training exercises and will deploy to Pacific Command in July.

Being repaired

USS George H. W. Bush — It went into maintenance last December.

USS Gerald R. Ford — It just returned from deployment and has entered its maintenance phase, which should last about a year.

USS John C. Stennis — In May 2021, the Stennis went into what’s known as RCOH — the major refueling complex overhaul — which can take four years. It is expected to return to duty in 2025. RCOH happens about midway through a carrier’s lifespan, and during that time, the ship’s electronics and combat and propulsion systems are upgraded, replaced and tested.

USS Nimitz — It went into maintenance in October 2023 and will move to workups later this year.

Not in service

PCU John F. Kennedy — It will be delivered to the Navy next year.

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