5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Everything you want to know about Aircraft Carriers.,
This review is from: Aircraft Carriers of the World: 1914 to the Present - An Illustrated Encyclopedia (Hardcover)"Aircraft Carriers of the World - 1914 to the Present" is a hardback book measuring approx. 10in x 10in. Beginning with a chapter headed "Evolution of the Aircraft Carrier," the author successfully explains the early days of aircraft at sea and the problems encountered in providing them with a mobile, floating base from which to operate - and return. With sections devoted to explaining flight-deck geometry, the catapult, landing systems and hangars, this provides an essential lead-in to the information that is to follow.
Chapter 2 gives the reader an insight into the changing "Role" of the Aircraft Carrier. This is a journey from those early days of "spotter planes" - required to do no more than report the whereabouts of enemy ships, right through to the ultimate modern-day, mobile nuclear powered system for delivering offensive airborne weapons to any corner of the world's seas.
With the right amount of graphs, ships' profiles, technical and historical information, this book is a scholarly piece of work. It was particularly interesting to see how the speed of carrier-borne aircraft has improved from less than 100 mph in 1915 to over 1,500 mph in 1972 and how the ratio of capital ships to aircraft carriers had completely reversed over a similar period. Further changes and modifications due to the advent of the British designed Sea Harrier are also covered in great detail.
Surprisingly, few countries (14 in all) appear to have ever employed Aircraft Carriers in their fleets and the remainder of the book gives full details of these countries and their ships in alphabetical order. Here one discovers how such historic ships as HMS Warrior built by Harland & Wolff and launched 20 May 1944 and HMS Vengeance (Swan Hunter - 23 February 1944) were renamed Independencia and Minas Gerais when they eventually became the pride of the Argentinean and Brazilian navies respectively.
The plentiful supply of historical photographs throughout the book are particularly well chosen. These include everything from the earliest attempts at launching aircraft from warships prior to WW1, the only known picture of the Japanese Shinano - displacing a massive 64,800 tons and lost in November 1944 prior to completion, and examples of every type of Carrier right up to the mighty nuclear powered USS Nimitz class and much more besides.
In short, this book contains everything you are ever likely to want to know about Aircraft Carriers and I congratulate both the author and publishers for a job well done.
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