58

RSS Home Page
<< . >>

NAME

USS. MIDWAY (CV.41)

CLASS

AIRCRAFT CARRIER

ENT/SERVICE

SEPTEMBER 10th 1945

BUILT

NEWPORT NEWS SHIPBUILDING / VIRGINIA / AMERICA

WEIGHT

45,000 TONS

LENGTH

968 FEET

WIDTH

113 FEET - FLIGHT DECK 136 FEET

SPEED

33 KNOTS

PROPELLERS

4 - 18 FEET DIAMETER - 22 TONS

ENGINES

4 - GEARED STEAM TURBINES - 212,000 HP

AIRCRAFT

137 - WORLD WAR TWO VINTAGE


Midway was the first of three ships in this class built for the US Navy, the others being Franklin D Roosevelt and Coral Sea. The hulls of these carriers were modeled on the cancelled Montana class battleships. With their slim hull design and large flight deck, they had a tendency to plunge forward in heavy seas. Although built for the Second World War, all three ships entered service too late to see any action. A captured German V2 rocket was launched from Midway’s flight deck in September 1947, this being the first time a missile had been fired from a ship. Midway completed seven Mediterranean patrols in her first ten years of service. On these deployments, she operated a variety of piston type aircraft.

Midway as built

Midway was returned to her builders in 1955 to be fitted with an angled flight deck. After the conversion had been completed, she re-entered service in September 1957 with an air wing of Phantom and Crusader jets. Midway’s first wartime deployment was to Vietnam in 1965. Soon after reaching the battle zone, one of her jets scored the first confirmed kill of a North Vietnam Mig. Midway was returned to America in February 1966 to undergo a four-year refit. Within two years of re-entering service, the navy had her returned to the war in Vietnam. An agreement to end the Vietnam War in 1973 led to Midway being stationed at Yokosuka/Japan. The families of her crew were moved to Japan soon after.

Midway with angled deck

Midway went through another refit in 1986 to allow her to operate F/A 18 Hornets instead of the aging F/4 Phantoms and A/7 Corsairs. These final modifications increased her flight deck width to 257 feet. On Midway’s next wartime deployment, she steamed from Yokosuka to take part in the liberation of Kuwait. That battle began January 17th 1991 and lasted for 43 days. Midway’s aircraft flew over 3,300 combat missions throughout the war without any losses. She was the only one of the four US carriers in the Gulf at that time not to lose any aircraft.

Midway from the air

After 17 years based at Yokosuka, Midway set out for Pearl Harbor in 1991 to rendezvous with the US carrier Independence. This Forrestal class carrier had been assigned to replace her at Yokosuka. Midway’s aircraft were transferred to Independence at Pearl Harbor before she set out for the North Island Navel Air Station/San Diego. Midway was decommissioned on arrival and handed over to the City of San Diego to serve as a floating museum. The US Navy used Franklin D Roosevelt to carry out the first tests of jet aircraft being launched from carriers. These trials began July 21st 1948. After being decommissioned in 1977, the navy had her scrapped at Kearny/New Jersey in 1980. Coral Sea was decommissioned in 1991 after 44 years of service. Work on her dismantling began at Baltimore in 1993.

<< . >>