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Cruisers

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Wars and warfare

Battlecruiser

The battlecruiser, or battle cruiser, was a type of capital ship of the first half of the 20th century. They were similar in size, cost, and armament to battleships, but they generally carried less armour in order to attain faster speeds. The first battlecruisers were designed in the United Kingdom in the first decade of the century, as a development of the armoured cruiser, at the same time as the dreadnought succeeded the pre-dreadnought battleship. The goal of the design was to outrun any ship with similar armament, and chase down any ship with lesser armament; they were intended to hunt down slower, older armoured cruisers and destroy them with heavy gunfire while avoiding combat with the more powerful but slower battleships. However, as more and more battlecruisers were built, they were increasingly used alongside the better-protected battleships.

Wars and warfare

Heavy cruiser

The heavy cruiser was a type of cruiser, a naval warship designed for long range and high speed, armed generally with naval guns of roughly 203mm calibre of whose design parameters were dictated by the Washington Naval Treaty of 1922 and the London Naval Treaty of 1930. The heavy cruiser can be seen as a lineage of ship design from 1915 through the early 1950s, although the term 'heavy cruiser' only came into formal use in 1930. The heavy cruiser's immediate precursors were the light cruiser designs of the 1900s and 1910s, rather than the armoured cruisers of before 1905. When the armoured cruiser was supplanted by the battlecruiser, an intermediate ship type between this and the light cruiser was found to be needed—one larger and more powerful than the light cruisers of a potential enemy but not as large and expensive as the battlecruiser so as to be built in sufficient numbers to protect merchant ships and serve in a number of combat theaters.

Wars and warfare

Light cruiser

A light cruiser is a type of small- or medium-sized warship. The term is a shortening of the phrase "light armored cruiser", describing a small ship that carried armor in the same way as an armored cruiser: a protective belt and deck. Prior to this smaller cruisers had been of the protected cruiser model, possessing armored decks only. While lighter and smaller than other contemporary ships they were still true cruisers, retaining the extended radius of action and self-sufficiency to act independently across the world. Through their history they served in a variety of roles, primarily as convoy escorts and destroyer command ships, but also as scouts and fleet support vessels for battle fleets.

Wars and warfare

Virginia-class cruiser

The Virginia-class nuclear guided-missile cruisers, also known as the CGN-38 class, were a series of four double-ended nuclear-powered guided-missile cruisers commissioned in the late 1970s to 1980, which served in the United States Navy until the mid-to-late 1990s. They were the final class of nuclear-powered cruisers completed.

Wars and warfare

Mogami-class cruiser

The Mogami class (最上型) were four cruisers built for the Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN) during the 1930s. They were initially classified as light cruisers under the weight and armament restrictions of the London Naval Treaty. After Japan refused to comply any longer with that agreement, all four ships were rearmed with larger guns and were reclassified as heavy cruisers. All four fought in World War II and were sunk.

Wars and warfare

Omaha-class cruiser

The Omaha-class cruisers were a class of light cruisers built for the United States Navy. The oldest class of cruiser still in service with the Navy at the outbreak of World War II, the Omaha class was an immediate post-World War I design.

Wars and warfare

Protected cruiser

The protected cruiser is a type of naval cruiser of the late 19th century, so known because its armoured deck offered protection for vital machine spaces from fragments caused by exploding shells above. Protected cruisers were an alternative to the armoured cruisers, which also had a belt of armour along the sides.

Wars and warfare

Armored cruiser

The armored cruiser was a type of warship of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. It was designed like other types of cruisers to operate as a long-range, independent warship, capable of defeating any ship apart from a battleship and fast enough to outrun any battleship it encountered. Varying in size, it was distinguished from other types of cruiser by its belt armor—thick iron plating on much of the hull to protect the ship from shellfire much like that on battleships. The first armored cruiser, the Imperial Russian Navy's General-Admiral, was launched in 1873 and combined sail and steam propulsion. By the 1890s cruisers had abandoned sail and took on a modern appearance.

Wars and warfare

Tone-class cruiser

The two Tone-class cruisers were the last heavy cruisers completed for the Imperial Japanese Navy. The Tone-class cruisers were originally envisaged as the 5th and 6th vessels in the Mogami class. However, by the time construction began, serious weaknesses in the Mogami-class hull design had become clear following the Fourth Fleet incident in 1935. As Japan no longer was obligated to abide by the limitations of the London Naval Treaty, a new design was created and new means of construction were utilized. Though the external dimensions were close to the Mogami class, the design was quite different, with all the main battery of guns placed forward of the bridge, reserving the entire stern area as a large seaplane operations deck. Unlike the U.S. Navy, the Japanese did not have a dual role attack/scout aircraft, nor did they assign any of their carrier aircraft to a reconnaissance role. Little emphasis was placed on this aspect of carrier warfare. Instead the Japanese reserved all of their carrier aircraft for attack roles. Reconnaissance then was relegated to the float planes carried by cruisers. The Tone and the Chikuma were intended to provide the long range reconnaissance needed for Japan's carrier Air Fleets.

Wars and warfare

Aircraft cruiser

The aircraft cruiser is a warship that combines the features of the aircraft carrier and a surface warship such as a cruiser or battleship.

Wars and warfare

Myōkō-class cruiser

The four Myōkō-class cruisers were built for the Imperial Japanese Navy in the late 1920s. Three were lost during World War II.

Wars and warfare

HMS Sheffield (C24)

HMS Sheffield was one of the Southampton sub class of the Town-class cruisers of the Royal Navy during the Second World War. She took part in actions against several major German warships. Unlike most Royal Navy ships of her time, her fittings were constructed from stainless steel instead of the more traditional brass. This was an attempt to reduce the amount of cleaning required on the part of the crew. Her nickname, the "Shiny Sheff", stemmed from this. A prototype radar system was placed into service in August 1938 on the Sheffield. It was the first vessel in the Royal Navy to be so equipped.

Wars and warfare

Kynda-class cruiser

The Project 58 missile cruisers, known to NATO as the Kynda class and sometimes referred to as the Grozny class, from the name of the first ship of the series to be constructed, were the first generation of Soviet missile cruisers and represented a considerable advance for the Soviet Navy. Their main role was anti-surface warfare using the SS-N-3b 'Shaddock' missile. The design proved top-heavy and was soon succeeded by the larger Kresta I class, but the Kyndas stayed in service until the fall of the Soviet Union.

Wars and warfare

USS St. Louis (CL-49)

USS St. Louis (CL-49), the lead ship of her class of light cruiser, was the fifth ship of the United States Navy named after the city of St. Louis, Missouri. Commissioned in 1939, she was very active in the Pacific during World War II, earning eleven battle stars.

Wars and warfare

HMAS Canberra (D33)

HMAS Canberra (I33/D33), named after the Australian capital city of Canberra, was a Royal Australian Navy (RAN) heavy cruiser of the Kent sub-class of County-class cruisers. Constructed in Scotland during the mid-1920s, the ship was commissioned in 1928, and spent the first part of her career primarily operating in Australian waters, with some deployments to the China Station.