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In addition to airplanes, the US Navy utilizes helicopters for attacking ships and submarines, conducting search and rescue operations, delivering supplies, and carrying out humanitarian missions. Some navy 62 Ship-launched missiles provide much greater range and accuracy than the cannons and naval guns of the past. helicopters have even been called upon to help fight forest fires. The SH-60 Seahawk helicopter is based on aircraft carriers, destroyers, and frigates. It has special sensors to detect submarines and can be equipped with machine guns, torpedoes, and missiles.

Special fleet support ships are designed to assist submarines. Hospital ships and tugboats are two other types of fleet support ships. Naval Aviation The strength of the US Navy comes from more than just its ships and submarines. In addition to guns, torpedoes, missiles, and other weapons, the navy has a large fleet of aircraft. These aircraft are used to defend fleets, strike enemy ships and targets on shore, perform patrols, and assist with humanitarian efforts. The F/A-18 Hornet and its advanced version, the Super Hornet, are multirole combat jets designed to accomplish a variety of missions.

Some submarines carry and launch missiles at targets on land. Others sink ships and other submarines using torpedoes. Submarines that fire nuclear missiles are called ballistic missile submarines. Those that fire torpedoes are called attack submarines. THE NAVY GOES NUCLEAR In 1955, the US Navy launched its first nuclear-powered submarine, the Nautilus. Since that time, many nuclear-powered vessels have been built. The Enterprise became the first nuclear-powered aircraft carrier in 1961. Today, all US carriers are nuclear powered.

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US Navy by Susan E. Hamen Susan


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