Ticonderoga class cruiser

Ticonderoga class cruiser

The "Ticonderoga" class of missile cruisers is a class of warships in the U.S. Navy, first ordered and authorized in FY 1978. The class uses phased-array radar; the increased combat capability offered by the Aegis combat system and the AN/SPY-1 radar system justified the changing of the classification of USS|Ticonderoga|CG-47|2 and USS|Yorktown|CG-48|2 from DDG (guided missile destroyer) to CG (guided missile cruiser). "Vincennes" and "Valley Forge" may or may not have been authorized as DDGs; regardless, the DDG sequence continued with USS|Arleigh Burke|DDG-51|6 as DDG-51.

Of the “"Tico"s”, at least twelve (USS|Ticonderoga|CG-47|2, USS|Cowpens|CG-63|2, USS|Anzio|CG-68|2, USS|Yorktown|CG-48|2, USS|Valley Forge|CG-50|2, USS|Bunker Hill|CG-52|2, USS|Antietam|CG-54|2, USS|San Jacinto|CG-56|2, USS|Lake Champlain|CG-57|2, USS|Philippine Sea|CG-58|2, USS|Princeton|CG-59|2, and USS|Monterey|CG-61|2) share names with World War II aircraft carriers.

Vertical Launching System

In addition to the added radar capability, the "Ticonderoga" class built after the "Thomas S. Gates" are outfitted with two Vertical Launching Systems (or VLS). The two VLS allow the ship to have 122 launch tubes that can carry a wide variety of missiles, including the Tomahawk cruise missile, the Standard surface-to-air missile, the Evolved Sea Sparrow surface-to-air missile, and the ASROC anti-submarine missile. More importantly, the VLS enables all missiles to be on full stand-by at any given time, shortening the ship's response time. The original five ships, including the "Thomas S. Gates", had MK. 26 twin arm launchers which limited their missile capacity to a total of 88 missiles, and could not fire the Tomahawk missile. After the end of the Cold War, the lower capabilities of the original five ships limited them to home-waters duties. The ship's cluttered superstructure, inherited from the Spruance class destroyers , required two of the radar transceivers to be mounted on a special pallet on the portside aft corner of the superstructure, with the other two mounted on the forward starboard corner. Later Aegis ships, designed from the keel up to carry the SPY-1 radars, have them all clustered together. The high weight of the ships - 1,500 tons heavier than the "Spru-cans", resulted in a highly-stressed hull and some structural problems in early service, which were generally corrected in the late 1980s and mid-1990s. Several ships had superstructure cracks which had to be repaired.


Originally, the Navy had intended to replace its fleet of "Ticonderoga"-class guided missile cruisers with cruisers produced as part of the CG(X) missile cruiser program; however, severe budget cuts from the 21st century surface combatant program coupled with the increasing cost of the Sclass|Zumwalt|destroyer|0 guided missile destroyer program have led to wide spread rumors that the CG(X) program was cancelled. If this is in fact correct, then the "Ticonderoga"-class guided missile cruisers do not yet have an intended replacement.

All five of the twin-arm (Mk-26) cruisers have been decommissioned. The newer 22 of the 27 ships (CG-52 to CG-73) in the class will be upgraded to keep them combat-relevant, giving the ships a service life of 35 years each. [ [http://www.navysite.de/cg/cg47class.htm The Ticonderoga (CG 47) - Class ] ] In the years leading up to their decommissioning, the five twin-arm ships had been assigned primarily home-waters duties, acting as command ships for destroyer squadrons assigned to the eastern Pacific and western Atlantic areas.

Iran Air Flight 655

One ship of the class, USS|Vincennes|CG-49|6, became infamous in 1988 when she shot down Iran Air Flight 655, resulting in 290 civilian fatalities, which the captain of "Vincennes" had believed from misinterpreted radar returns to be an Iranian Air Force F-14 Tomcat jet fighter on an attack vector. "Vincennes" was decommissioned in 2005.

Interception of United States satellite USA-193

On February 14, 2008 the U.S. Department of Defense announced that the "Lake Erie" and two other ships would attempt to hit the dead satellite USA 193 in the north Pacific just prior to burn up during a period after February 20 using a modified SM-3 missile.cite news
title=Officials: U.S. to try to shoot down errant satellite
date=February 14, 2008
] cite news|url=http://www.reuters.com/article/topNews/idUSN1447206620080214?sp=true
title=Pentagon plans to shoot down disabled satellite
date=February 14, 2008
] On February 21, 2008, at approximately 3:30 UTC, the missile was fired and later confirmed to have struck the satellite. The military intended that the kinetic energy of the missile would rupture the hydrazine fuel tank allowing the toxic fuel to be consumed during re-entry.DoD confirmed that the fuel tank had been directly hit by the missile.Fact|date=March 2008



External links

* [http://navysite.de/cg/cg47class.htm navysite.de: The Ticonderoga (CG 47) - Class]
* [http://www.fas.org/man/dod-101/sys/ship/cg-47.htm Federation of American Scientists Report: Ticonderoga class guided missile cruisers]

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