The Big E, as it is known to sailors and shipbuilders, was the Navy's first nuclear-powered aircraft carrier. The Newport News-built ship was commissioned on Nov. 25, 1961, and it's a giant even by aircraft carrier standards, at 1,123-feet long and with eight nuclear reactors,
On December 1, the US Navy retired the aircraft carrier USS Enterprise (CVN-65) - the world's first nuclear-powered aircraft carrier - after a remarkable 51 years of service.
|USS Enterprise Retired|
At the same time, the Navy announced that the third Ford-class supercarrier (CVN-80), due to be completed around 2025, will be named Enterprise.
The USS Enterprise ended its notable 51-year career on Saturday during a ceremony at Naval Station Norfolk in Virginia.
With the inactivation, the U.S. fleet is temporarily reduced to 10 aircraft carriers while the USS Gerald R. Ford is built. It will join the fleet in 2015.
Six ships of the United States Navy have been named Enterprise:
- USS Enterprise (1799) 12-gun schooner / 14-gun brig (17 December 1799 – 9 July 1823), the third ship to bear this name, was built as schooner, and later rerigged as a brig. She fired the first shots in the First Barbary War against the Tripolitanian shipTripoli
- USS Enterprise (1831) 10-gun schooner (15 December 1831 – 24 June 1844), the fourth ship to bear this name
- USS Enterprise (1874) barque-rigged screw sloop (16 March 1877 – 1 October 1909), the fifth ship to bear this name
- USS Enterprise (SP-790) motor yacht (1917–1919), the sixth ship to bear this name, was non-commissioned, serving in the Second Naval District during World War I
- USS Enterprise (CV-6) Yorktown-class aircraft carrier (12 May 1938 – 17 February 1947), the seventh ship to bear this name, served with unparalleled distinction in World War II, becoming the most-decorated vessel in the history of the U.S. Navy.
- USS Enterprise (CVN-65) Enterprise-class aircraft carrier (25 November 1961 – Present), the eighth ship to bear this name, is a unique design, and the first nuclear powered aircraft carrier. It is scheduled to be decommissioned in 2013.
- USS Enterprise (CVN-80) "Ford"-class aircraft carrier, the ninth ship to bear the name. As of June 6, 2011, there was a petition circulating online to eventually name CVN-80 as "USSEnterprise".. On 1 December 2012, at the decommissioning of CVN-65, the Secretary of the Navy announced that CVN-80 would be named USS Enterprise.