Assault Carrier Tarawa class

The Tarawa class established the basis for all future assault carriers. They combine in a single hull the capabilities of previous LPH (helicopter carrier), LPD (well decks), LKA (cargo ships) and LCC (command and control ships) classes. They have distinctive bow sponsons, originally for 5in (127 mm) Mk 45 lightweight guns, subsequently removed in order to gain a squared-off forward flight deck.

    Derivatives / Succeeded by
US Wasp class 1989
                        US America (2014) class 2014


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39400full load (tn)
250length (m)
32beam (m)
7.90draught (m)
24max speed (knots)
70000power (shp)
2Naval Engine boilers
2Naval Engine steam turbines
2Missile Launcher Mk 49 21-cell RAM
4Naval Gun Mark 38 25 mm
2Close-In Weapon System CIWS Phalanx 20 mm
1Chaff and decoys Mark 36 SRBOC
1Aids TACAN URN-20
1Naval Radar air search radar AN/SPS-52


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    Typical Max
US USMC B-V 107M H-46 Sea Knight 1242
US USMC Sikorsky S-80 H-53E 60
US USMC Bell 209 AH-1 Cobra 40
US USMC Bell UH-1N 20

The Max option implies only aircraft of this model onboard    


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US Ingalls Shipbuilding - 5

List of Ships

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    Sorted by Year Filter:     Hide Transfers     Hide deriv.    
USUS NavyLHA-7America (2014) class USS Tripoli7----
USUS NavyLHA-1USS TarawaNLHA - 119762009
USUS NavyLHA-2USS SaipanNHOV - 219772007
USUS NavyLHA-3USS Belleau WoodNBWD - 319782005
USUS NavyLHA-4USS NassauNJPX - 419792011
USUS NavyLHA-5USS PeleliuNPEL - 519802015
USUS NavyLHD-1Wasp class USS WaspNEBP - 11989--
USUS NavyLHD-2Wasp class USS EssexNESX - 21992--
USUS NavyLHD-3Wasp class USS KearsargeNNKP - 31993--
USUS NavyLHD-4Wasp class USS BoxerNBXR - 41995--
USUS NavyLHD-5Wasp class USS BataanNBAT - 51997--
USUS NavyLHD-6Wasp class USS Bonhomme RichardNBHR - 61998--
USUS NavyLHD-7Wasp class USS Iwo JimaNXXG - 72001--
USUS NavyLHD-8Wasp class USS Makin IslandNMXG - 82009--
USUS NavyLHA-6America (2014) class USS America62014--

15 units


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1969-may-1OrderedUS LHA-1 USS Tarawa
1969-nov-15OrderedUS LHA-3 USS Belleau Wood
1970-nov-6OrderedUS LHA-5 USS Peleliu
1971-nov-15Laid downUS LHA-1 USS Tarawa
1972-jul-21Laid downUS LHA-2 USS Saipan
1973-mar-5Laid downUS LHA-3 USS Belleau Wood
1973-aug-13Laid downUS LHA-4 USS Nassau
1973-dec-1LaunchedUS LHA-1 USS Tarawa
1974-jul-20LaunchedUS LHA-2 USS Saipan
1976-may-29CommissionedUS LHA-1 USS Tarawa
1976-nov-12Laid downUS LHA-5 USS Peleliu
1977-apr-11LaunchedUS LHA-3 USS Belleau Wood
1977-oct-15CommissionedUS LHA-2 USS Saipan
1978-jan-21LaunchedUS LHA-4 USS Nassau
1978-sep-23CommissionedUS LHA-3 USS Belleau Wood
1978-nov-25LaunchedUS LHA-5 USS Peleliu
1979-jul-28CommissionedUS LHA-4 USS Nassau
1980-may-3CommissionedUS LHA-5 USS Peleliu
1981-mar-3AircraftUS LHA-3 USS Belleau Wood accident CH-46D 153961
1982-oct-1Port VisitUS LHA-4 USS Nassau visited Portsmouth 1-6 Oct 1982 with Ships Flt UH-1N 160838 embarked.
1984US LHA-3 USS Belleau Wood organic helicopter was HH-1N 160834
1985DeploymentUS LHA-1 USS Tarawa Pacific deployment for 6 months, including testing Mastiff UAV procedures in support of amphibious operations, until early 1986
1986-aug-29AircraftUS LHA-2 USS Saipan CH-46 157689 accident
1988AircraftUS LHA-2 USS Saipan SAR bird was UH-1N 158256 at least until 1992
1989-sep-10AircraftUS LHA-5 USS Peleliu UH-1N 160828 accident
1997-marDeploymentUS LHA-4 USS Nassau Operation Helvin ordered off Albanian coast (under Operation Silver Wake) to evacuate US personnel and civilians from its embassy in Tirana.
1998-jul-9Port VisitUS LHA-1 USS Tarawa Embarked 6 AV8 of VMA-211 UH-1 159689 : 160175 AH-1 165044 : 165277 : 165280 : 165323 H-46 150958 : 151915 : 153350 : 154817 : 156420 : 156426 : 156439 : 157696 H-53 164362 : 164363 : 164364 : 164365 except for the 2 US Navy HH-46D all aircraft for composite unit HMM-268 with code YQ-..
2000-dec-23Port VisitUS LHA-4 USS Nassau , Italy up to 4jan01
2001-jan-8Port VisitUS LHA-4 USS Nassau , Malta up to 11jan01
2001-feb-2Port VisitUS LHA-4 USS Nassau , France up to 5feb01
2001-mar-13Port VisitUS LHA-4 USS Nassau , Malta up to 16mar01
2001-nov-25DeploymentUS LHA-5 USS Peleliu Launched CH-63Es from HMM-163 carrying US Marines from Task Force 58 in their assault on Rhino.
2002-sepDeploymentUS LHA-3 USS Belleau Wood part of a 3 ship Amphibious Ready Group
2004-jun-29DeploymentUS LHA-1 USS Tarawa RIMPAC 04 Participated in RIMPAC 04 exercise
2005-jun-24DeploymentUS LHA-2 USS Saipan Fleet Review: Trafalgar 200 Present at Trafalgar 200 Fleet Review, off Ryde Sand anchorage
2005-jul-1Port VisitUS LHA-2 USS Saipan Present at International Festival of the Sea 2005, Portsmouth
2005-oct-28DecommissionedUS LHA-3 USS Belleau Wood
2005-oct-28StruckUS LHA-3 USS Belleau Wood
2006-jul-13Fate: sunkUS LHA-3 USS Belleau Wood as target during RIMPAC 06
2007-apr-25DecommissionedUS LHA-2 USS Saipan
2008-jun-2Port VisitUS LHA-5 USS Peleliu visit Singapore
2009-mar-31DecommissionedUS LHA-1 USS Tarawa to fleet reserve
2010-jan-18DeploymentUS LHA-4 USS Nassau Operation Panlake Diverted with its embarked V-22 and 24 MEU to Haiti for Earthquake relief effort (arrived 18 Jan) as part of US Operation Unified Response, with USS Bataan.
2011-mar-31DecommissionedUS LHA-4 USS Nassau to reserve fleet at Beaumont, TX

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