Carrier Strike Group
A U.S. carrier strike group (CSG, CVBG) will typically include:
- One large aircraft carrier, most often Nimitz-class, with full catapult and arresting wire system, carrying 70-100 aircraft forming a carrier air wing
- Two cruisers of the Ticonderoga-class , which are major escort vessels with extensive capability for anti-air warfare and anti-submarine warfare. They also can conduct deep strike by launching cruise missiles, which might be fired ahead of an air attack to help in suppression of enemy air defenses
- Two or more destroyers of the Burke-class, which are units almost as powerful as a Ticonderoga and sharing many weapons and systems.
- One fast replenishment ship
- One or two Perry-class frigates, which are smaller, lighter ocean escorts, not as fast as the other ships, which are useful if the replenishment ship needs to be detached yet escorted, or if an Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) is attached.
- Two attack submarines, usually Los Angeles-class, especially the later versions that can launch cruise missiles. These have a major anti-submarine warfare role, can carry out clandestine intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, and deliver special operating forces such as U.S. Navy SEALs.
The group is commanded by a rear admiral or commodore, usually with the carrier as flagship. Group air defense control is most often run from one of the cruisers.
Under normal tempo of operations, for each group deployed in a theater of operations, two other groups will be in transit, training, or refitting. Forward groups usually always in the western Pacific with the United States Seventh Fleet and in the Mediterranean with the United States Sixth Fleet. There may be one in southwest Asian waters, under the United States Fifth Fleet. For peak demands, such as Operation DESERT STORM, as many as six groups may concentrate, with more airpower aboard than possessed by more than a small number of navies.
India probably has the closest equivalent formation, although with much lesser capabilities. France can put one group to sea, and Britain, with active construction, will have two.