USNI News Fleet and Marine Tracker: May 1, 2023

May 1, 2023 1:26 PM
USNI News Graphic

These are the approximate positions of the U.S. Navy’s deployed carrier strike groups and amphibious ready groups throughout the world as of May 1, 2023, based on Navy and public data. In cases where a CSG or ARG is conducting disaggregated operations, the chart reflects the location of the capital ship.

Ships Underway

Total Battle Force Deployed Underway
(USS 238, USNS 58)
(USS 67, USNS 32)
(38 Deployed, 22 Local)

In Japan

Vice Adm. Kenneth Whitesell, commander, U.S. Naval Air Forces, addresses Sailors during an all-hands call on the flight deck aboard USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76), while in-port Commander, Fleet Activities Yokosuka, April 25, 2023. US Navy Photo

USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76) is in port in Yokosuka, Japan.

The America Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) is in Sasebo, Japan. The America ARG consists of USS America (LHA-6), Amphibious Squadron 11 and USS Green Bay (LPD-20).

In the South China Sea

A F/A-18F Super Hornet from the ‘Mighty Shrikes’ of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 94 launches from the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz (CVN-68) on April 22, 2023. US Navy Photo

The Nimitz Carrier Strike Group (CSG) is in the South China Sea.

According to the Navy, aircraft carrier USS Nimitz (CVN 68) and units from Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 11 left Laem Chabang, Thailand on April 29 after a four-day port visit.

The Nimitz CSG deployed from the West Coast on Dec. 3 and chopped into U.S. 7th Fleet on Dec. 16.

“During the visit, the Strike Group flagship USS Nimitz (CVN 68) will host a reception to celebrate the 190th anniversary of U.S.-Thai diplomatic relations. The visit also provides an opportunity for U.S. Sailors to explore the local culture and participate in professional engagements and community relations projects,” reads a news release from U.S. Indo-Pacific Command.

Carrier Strike Group 11

Capt. Craig Sicola, commanding officer of the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz (CVN-68), front seat, and Cmdr. Luke Edwards, commanding officer of the “Fighting Redcocks” of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 22, make an arrested landing in an F/A-18F Super Hornet from VFA-22 marking the 350,000th time the carrier has landed a fixed-wing aircraft on its flight deck on April 22, 2023. US Navy Photo

Aircraft carrier

USS Nimitz (CVN-68), homeported in Bremerton, Wash.

On April 22, “the oldest-serving U.S commissioned aircraft carrier in the world, successfully completed its 350,000th arrested aircraft landing while sailing in the South China Sea, a milestone nearly 48 years in the making,” reads a news release from the carrier.

Carrier Air Wing 17

Sailors move ordnance on the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz (CVN-68) on April 21, 2023. US Navy Photo

Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 17, based at Naval Air Station Lemoore, Calif., is embarked aboard Nimitz and includes a total of nine squadrons and detachments:

  • The “Fighting Redcocks” of VFA-22 Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) flying F/A-18Fs from Naval Air Station Lemoore, Calif.
  • The “Mighty Shrikes” of VFA-94 – F/A-18F – from Naval Air Station Lemoore.
  • The “Kestrels” of VFA-137 – F/A-18E – from Naval Air Station Lemoore.
  • The “Blue Diamonds” of VFA-146 – from Naval Air Station Lemoore.
  • The “Cougars” of VAQ-139 – EA-18G – Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) – from Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Wash.
  • The “Sun Kings” of VAW-116 – E-2D – Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) – from Naval Air Station Point Mugu, Calif.
  • The “Providers” of VRC-30 – C-2A – Fleet Logistics Multi-Mission Squadron (VRM) – from Naval Air Station North Island, Calif.
  • The “Indians” of HSC-6 – MH-60S – Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) – from Naval Air Station North Island.
  • The “Battle Cats” of HSM-73 – MH-60R – Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) – from Naval Air Station North Island.


Sailors fight a simulated flood during a damage control drill aboard the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Bunker Hill (CG-52) on April 20, 2023. US Navy Photo

USS Bunker Hill (CG-52), homeported at Naval Station San Diego, Calif.

Destroyer Squadron 9

Sailors aboard the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Wayne E. Meyer (DDG-108) conduct an underway replenishment with the Lewis and Clark-class dry cargo ship USNS Washington Chambers (T-AKE-11) on April 15, 2023. US Navy Photo

Destroyer Squadron 9 is based in Everett, Wash., and is embarked on Nimitz.

  • USS Wayne E. Meyer (DDG-108), homeported at Naval Station Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.
  • USS Chung-Hoon (DDG-93), homeported at Naval Station Pearl Harbor.
  • USS Decatur (DDG-73), homeported at Naval Station San Diego, Calif.
  • USS Paul Hamilton (DDG-60), homeported at Naval Station San Diego.

In Manila, Republic of the Philippines

Master Chief Intelligence Specialist Derik Burris, left, and Command Master Chief Luke Jenkins observe restricted maneuvering aboard amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD 8) in the Philippines, April 28, 2023. US Navy Photo

The Makin Island ARG – with the 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit embarked – is operating in Manila.

According to a Navy release, the ARG, MEU and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) completed Exercise Balikatan 2023 on April 28, with a closing ceremony in Camp Aguinaldo, Philippines.

USS Makin Island (LHD-8), the flagship of the Makin Island Amphibious Ready Group, left Naval Base San Diego on Nov. 9 for a deployment to the Indo-Pacific. The ARG also includes amphibious transport docks USS John P. Murtha (LPD-26) and USS Anchorage (LPD-23).

Brig. Gen. Fridrik Fridriksson, commanding general, 3d Marine Expeditionary Brigade, addresses the ship’s crew during a change of command ceremony aboard amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD 8), April 28, 2023 in the Philippines. US Navy Photo

During the deployment to the Western Pacific, the ARG has worked with other U.S. assets, including Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 21, P-8A Poseidon aircraft and personnel from U.S. 7th Fleet and CTF 72, 73, 75, 76/3, Destroyer Squadron 7 and Amphibious Squadron 7. Task Force 76/3 was recently formed as a result of merging the staffs of the Navy’s TF 76 and the 3rd Marine Expeditionary Brigade, III Marine Expeditionary Force.

The MEU includes the aviation combat element with the “Flying Leathernecks” of Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 122 flying F-35B Lightning II Joint Strike Fighters and the “Ugly Angels” of Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 362 (Reinforced) flying MV-22B Ospreys; the Battalion Landing team of 2nd Battalion, 4th Marines; and Combat Logistics Battalion 13 making up the logistics combat element.

In the Red Sea

Expeditionary fast transport ship USNS Brunswick (T-EPF 6) arrives in to Tawau, Malaysia, on April 21, 2018, for a mission stop in support of Pacific Partnership (PP) 2018. US Navy photo.

USNI News reported that the Navy transported 300 evacuees on Monday from the Port of Sudan to Jeddah, Saudi Arabia as part of State Department-led evacuation of Sudan.

“USNS Brunswick (T-EPF 6) arrived in Port Sudan Sunday afternoon, April 30. Brunswick is supporting the Department of State’s ongoing efforts to evacuate [and] assist U.S. citizens and others who have requested departure from Sudan,” a U.S. Africa Command spokesperson told USNI News on Monday.

The aluminum catamaran left Diego Garcia on April 19 and arrived in Djibouti in April 25, The Maritime Executive reported on Sunday.

“She departed again that night and headed north towards Sudan, then disappeared from AIS,” wrote The Maritime Executive.
“Port Sudan is reportedly operating normally, with all services and businesses open. As a transport hub and a place of relative safety, it has become a mustering point for evacuees. A commercial ferry, the Amanah, is operating regular services to carry foreigners across the Red Sea to Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, and the government of India has deployed warships to carry Indian nationals on the same route. China’s PLA Navy and the Royal Saudi Navy have also used the seaport to evacuate their own citizens and other foreign nationals.”

An MH-60R Sea Hawk helicopter assigned to the ‘Easyriders’ of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 37 delivers cargo to the expeditionary mobile base USS Lewis B. Puller (T-ESB-3). US Navy Photo

In addition to Brunswick, guided-missile destroyer USS Truxtun (DDG-103) and expeditionary sea base USS Lewis B. Puller (ESB-3) are also in the Red Sea.

“Based on an Alaska-class oil tanker, Puller serves as an expeditionary sea base for mine countermeasures and special operation forces. Based in Bahrain, Puller has a massive flight deck and can host several helicopters and the tilt-rotor MV-22B Osprey. The exact composition of assets embarked on Puller isn’t clear,” reported USNI News.

In the Western Atlantic

A UH-1Y attack helicopter attached to the 26th MEU flies near USS Bataan (LHD-5) on April 24, 2023. USNI News Photo

The Bataan Amphibious Ready Group – with the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit embarked – is conducting an Amphibious Ready Group Marine Expeditionary Unit Exercise (ARGMEUEX).

According to the Marine Corps, the sailors and Marines ”recently conducted several training scenarios simulating an escalating situation involving a consulate overseas. The scenario included the deployment of the 26th MEU Forward Command Element (FCE), a rapid deployment (from the sea) of an Infantry Company to reinforce the consulate, the establishment of an Evacuation Control Center (ECC), and the conduct of a Noncombatant Evacuation Operation (NEO) within a realistic training scenario in the littorals of eastern North Carolina.”

USNI News was underway aboard USS Bataan (LHD-5) and observed the NEO exercise onshore at Camp Lejeune, N.C.

The ARG is led by Amphibious Squadron 8 and includes three ships – the Wasp-class multi-purpose amphibious assault ship Bataan, San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock ship USS Mesa Verde (LPD-19), and Harpers Ferry-class dock landing ship USS Carter Hall (LSD-50).
Guided-missile cruiser USS San Jacinto (CG-56) was also underway with the Bataan ARG.

USS Wasp (LHD-1) is underway in the Virginia Capes.

In addition to these major formations, not shown are others serving in submarines, individual surface ships, aircraft squadrons, SEALs, Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Forces, Seabees, Coast Guard cutters, EOD Mobile Units and more serving throughout the globe.

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