Aircraft carrier has to be able to do following things:

a) carry as many aircraft as possible

b) launch them as quickly as possible

c) recover them as quickly as possible

d) have as many aircraft on deck as possible

While ski ramp is simpler, more reliable, and is safer than catapult-assisted takeoff, it puts heavy limits on payload carried. While two catapults can launch two aircraft in the air nearly simultaneously, there isn’t much difference in long-term launch rate. Thus ramp-equipped carrier is better for fleet defense, while catapult-equipped one is better for attack.

Both Navalised Typhoon and Rafale M are able to take off from ramp-equipped carrier with no catapult assistance. Rafale version will also carry E-2 Hawkeye AWACS, and A-262 Panther multipurpose helicopter.

Carrier would have four elevators, so that aircraft can be brought on deck as fast as possible. Bridge and Air Control Tower will be on opposite sides of the carrier, so there is no need to compensate for their weight, as they cancel each other out.

I have also decided to propose two possible sizes. First, smaller carrier will be 271,5 meters long and 46,4 meters wide (not counting superstructure). It will carry 21 Rafale and 2 Panthers on flight deck, and either 30 Rafales and 6 Panthers or 41 Rafale and 4 Panthers in hangar. Total will thus be 51 – 62 Rafales and 6 – 8 Panthers.

Second, larger carrier, will be 362 meters long at 69 meters wide, not countring superstructure. It will carry 31 Rafales, 3 Hawkeyes and 4 Panthers on flight deck, and either 35 Rafale, 2 Hawkeye and 10 Panther or 74 Rafale, 5 Hawkeye and 11 Panther in hangar. Thus, total will be 66 – 105 Rafales, 5 – 8 Hawkeyes, and 14 – 15 Panthers.

I personally prefer smaller carriers due to smaller number of eggs in one basket, and better handling in closed seas. While smaller EU carrier cannot launch AWACS, it can rely on AWACS from land bases, or use fighters for reconnaissance. They would also be used to escort larger carriers.

For United States, F/A-18C Hornet with IRST and DRFM jammer, EA-18G Growler, E-2 Hawkeye, C-2 Greyhound and SH-60 seahawk will be used. However, these have to use catapults for launch.

Carrier dimensions would remain same as EU carriers, but fighter compliment would differ. Small carrier would have 26 F-18s, 1 Hawkeye and 2 Seahawks on flight deck and either 29 F-18s, 3 seahawks and 2 Hawkeyes or 27 F-18s, 5 Seahawks and 2 Hawkeyes in hangar. Total would thus be 55 F-18s, 3 Hawkeyes and 5 Seahawks, or 53 F-18s, 3 Hawkeyes and 7 Seahawks.

Large carrier would have 31 F-18, 3 Hawkeyes and 3 Seahawks on flight deck and either 40 F-18s, 2 Hawkeyes and 10 Seahawks or 65 F-18s, 8 Hawkeyes and 20 Seahawks in hangar. Thus, total would be 71 – 96 F-18s, 5 – 11 Hawkeyes and 13 – 23 Seahawks.

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