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Navy Fleets With the Most Aircraft Carriers

Aerial drone photo of USS Gerald R. Ford latest technology nuclear powered aircraft carrier anchored in deep blue open ocean sea

Navy Fleets With the Most Aircraft Carriers

In the history of naval warfare, no ship has been more dominant or feared than that of the aircraft carrier. With the ability to deploy and recover aircraft around the clock, aircraft carriers can project global dominance for whatever country has them available. 

While they can also serve humanitarian causes, aircraft carriers are, first and foremost, warships. Countries with navy fleets that have aircraft carriers are a large detriment to entering any conflict. With this in mind, let’s look at the countries with the most aircraft carriers worldwide.

11. Brazil

Brazil has one aircraft carrier in service and another on the way.
  • Number of aircraft carriers: 1
  • Total tonnage: 21,500

The Brazilian aircraft carrier Atlantico was acquired from the United Kingdom in 2018. The Atlantico is currently the only aircraft carrier in South America. 

10. Turkey

Turkey has one aircraft carrier dedicated to one type of fighter jet.
  • Number of aircraft carriers: 1
  • Total tonnage: 27,000

The TCG Anadolu is the lone Turkish aircraft carrier that allows the country to land its Bayraktar TB3 fighter jet fleet.

9. Spain

Spain has one aircraft carrier that serves as the tip of the Spanish Navy.
  • Number of aircraft carriers: 1
  • Total tonnage: 26,000

The Juan Carlos I is a multipurpose light aircraft carrier that is the backbone of the Spanish navy. It is only equipped to handle Spain’s fleet of Harrier fighter jets as a light carrier. 

8. Russia

Russia only has one aircraft carrier after taking two out of service.
  • Number of aircraft carriers: 1
  • Total tonnage: 58,000

The current Russian fleet has one aircraft carrier, the Admiral Kuznetsov, commissioned in 1991 and has a nautical range of 8,500 miles. 

7. France

Charles de Gaulle
The French Navy has one aircraft carrier and another on the way.
  • Number of aircraft carriers: 1
  • Total tonnage: 45,000

As of May 2024, France only has one nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, the FS Charles de Gaulle. It can serve a mix of aircraft, including helicopters and fighter jets. 

6. United Kingdom

The United Kingdom has two aircraft carriers after selling off older models.
  • Number of aircraft carriers: 2
  • Total tonnage: 72,000

The HMS Queen Elizabeth and the HMS Prince of Wales comprise the United Kingdom’s aircraft carrier fleet. 

5. Japan

The Japanese Navy has two aircraft carriers available in May 2024.
  • Number of aircraft carriers: 2
  • Total tonnage: 64,200

Japan announced in 2018 that it was converting its helicopter carriers, the Izumo and the Kaga, into aircraft carriers that could deploy and recover fighter jets. Combined, the two ships have a displacement of 64,200 tons. 

4. Italy

GIUSEPPE GARIBALDI aircraft carrier
The Italian Navy currently boasts two aircraft carriers.
  • Number of aircraft carriers: 2
  • Total tonnage: 44,150

Italy has two aircraft carriers in its naval fleet: the Giuseppe Garibaldi and the Cavour. The Giuseppe, commissioned in 1985, differs from the more modern Cavour. 

3. India

India will have three aircraft carriers within the next 10 years.
  • Number of aircraft carriers: 2
  • Total tonnage: 90,000

India’s two aircraft carriers, the INS Vikramaditya and the INS Vikrant, have a total tonnage of 90,000. 

2. China

China has the second-largest aircraft carrier fleet.
  • Number of aircraft carriers: 3
  • Total tonnage: 144,000

As of May 2024, China has three aircraft carriers in the People’s Liberation Army. The Liaoning, Shandong, and Fujian are all currently in service. 

1. United States

naval warfare
The United States has the largest aircraft carrier fleet.
  • Number of aircraft carriers: 11
  • Total tonnage: 1.2 million

The United States is the most dominant player in the aircraft carrier space. With 11 total aircraft carriers, each ship carries up to 90 planes and helicopters, plus thousands of pilots, sailors, and support staff. 

France

French aircraft carrier
The French are finalizing a new aircraft carrier for the next decade.

The Porte-Avions Nouvelle Generation, which will replace the FS Charles de Gaulle in the next decade, will launch with a displacement of 75,000 tons and is set to be around 980 feet in total length.

United States

The United States will add two more aircraft carriers to its fleet.

The United States currently has two aircraft carriers on order in addition to the 11 already in service. The Ford-class ship, with a total tonnage of 100,000 tons, will be 1,093 feet long and launch in 2034. An America-class boat, set to launch sometime in the next decade, will be 843 feet long and have a total tonnage of 45,000 tons.

India

India is building its first aircraft carrier coming in the next decade.

With India’s existing carriers coming from Russia, the country is set to launch its own locally manufactured aircraft carrier, the INS Vishal, with a displacement of 65,000 tons.

Brazil

Minas Gerais, Brazilian Navy
A new aircraft carrier will double the size of the Brazilian fleet.

Brazil is looking to double the size of its fleet. In 2029, it will launch the Rio de Janeiro aircraft carrier. At 50,000 tons, the carrier will give Brazil the largest overall fleet in South America.

China

China aircraft carrier
China is developing its next-generation aircraft carrier.

The Type 003 aircraft carrier, Fujian, is undergoing sea trials and is planned for a 2024 launch. At 1,037 feet long and 80,000 tons, it will be the largest ship in China’s fleet. It will also be the closest aircraft carrier on the planet close in size to American warships.

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