Aircraft carrier flight sustainability

Unread postPosted: 13 Dec 2012, 02:39
by delvo
There's a finite amount of space inside the ship, and not all of that can be full of aircraft fuel, so how long can the planes keep flying before it runs out? And once a tanker ship arrives to replenish it, how long does that take, and can the planes still fly during that time?

Unread postPosted: 13 Dec 2012, 07:40
by LinkF16SimDude
The carrier may get low on jet fuel but it never runs out. I'm sure there are planners that crunch numbers and determine when and where a refuel is needed, either via an UNREP or at a Port of Call.

And with the exception of heli-borne resupply, there are no flight ops during an UNREP AFAIK. Safety factors and such.

Unread postPosted: 02 Feb 2013, 22:27
by spazsinbad
No such problem for STOVL ops on flat decks of old in the UK however. Cannot say about USMC flat decks.

Unread postPosted: 02 Feb 2013, 23:11
by count_to_10
Googling around, I get 3.5 million gallons on a Nimitz, about a million kg, or over 100 F-35C loads.

Re: Aircraft carrier flight sustainability

Unread postPosted: 23 Feb 2014, 08:00
by avon1944
delvo wrote:There's a finite amount of space inside the ship, and not all of that can be full of aircraft fuel, so how long can the planes keep flying before it runs out? And once a tanker ship arrives to replenish it, how long does that take, and can the planes still fly during that time?


Two levels above the keel (NOTE 1), the USS Nimitz class carriers have forty fuel bunkers in armored cells and forty ammunition magazines also in armored cells. This is all below the water-line! Several more levels then the hangar deck (NOTE 2) then, three levels between the hangar deck and the flight deck!!
Remember, the Nimitz class carriers were designed when the Soviet navy used one metric ton warheads on anti-ship missiles and torpedoes! The Nimitz can take a lick'n and keep on tick'n.

NOTE:
1) The keel is not a single beam but, a network / lattice of beams, to limit the damage of "keel hunting" torpedoes.

2)The hangar deck three sets of two armored doors that weigh 110 tons each -made of steel and concrete that divides the hangar deck into thirds, just part of the damage control.

Re:

Unread postPosted: 24 Feb 2014, 02:14
by rotosequence
count_to_10 wrote:Googling around, I get 3.5 million gallons on a Nimitz, about a million kg, or over 100 F-35C loads.


Assuming your numbers are accurate, and 24 F-35C sorties per day, that would require replenishing the jet fuel stocks of the Nimitz every five days.

Re: Re:

Unread postPosted: 24 Feb 2014, 04:32
by sprstdlyscottsmn
rotosequence wrote:
count_to_10 wrote:Googling around, I get 3.5 million gallons on a Nimitz, about a million kg, or over 100 F-35C loads.


Assuming your numbers are accurate, and 24 F-35C sorties per day, that would require replenishing the jet fuel stocks of the Nimitz every five days.


at 3.5 million gallons, 6.7 lbs/gal, that yields 23,450,000 lbs of fuel. (11,725 of the carriers ~100,000tons) and at ~19,500 lbs per F-35C, that is 1,200+ flight loads, not 100. However, during combat ops there would be more than 25 flight ops a day, and at the same time the F-35 is not the only aircraft on the deck.