List of airships of the United States Navy
List of airships of the United State Navy identifies the airships of the United States Navy
United States Navy
The United States Navy is the naval warfare service branch of the United States Armed Forces and one of the seven uniformed services of the United States. The U.S. Navy is the largest in the world; its battle fleet tonnage is greater than that of the next 13 largest navies combined. The U.S...

 by type, identification, and class.

Rigid airship
Rigid airship
A rigid airship is a type of airship in which the envelope retained its shape by the use of an internal structural framework rather than by being forced into shape by the pressure of the lifting gas within the envelope as used in blimps and semi-rigid airships.Rigid airships were produced and...


  • ZMC-2
    The ZMC-2 was the only successfully-operated metal-skinned airship ever built. Constructed at Naval Air Station Grosse Ile by The Aircraft Development Corporation of Detroit, the ZMC-2 was operated by the U.S. Navy at Lakehurst, New Jersey from 1929 until its scrapping in 1941...

    , a metalclad-airship built by the Aircraft Development Corp - 1929-41 (scrapped)
  • (ZR-1) Shenandoah
    USS Shenandoah (ZR-1)
    USS Shenandoah was the first of four United States Navy rigid airships. It was built in 1922-1923 at Lakehurst Naval Air Station, and first flew in September 1923. It developed the Navy's experience with rigid airships, even making the first crossing of North America by airship...

     - 1923-25 (lost due to structural failure in line squalls)
  • (ZR-2) R38 (see below) - 1921 (lost due to control inputs far in excess of structural strength)
  • (ZR-3) Los Angeles
    USS Los Angeles (ZR-3)
    The second USS Los Angeles was a rigid airship, designated ZR-3, that was built in 1923-1924 by the Zeppelin factory in Friedrichshafen, Germany, where it was originally designated LZ-126...

     - 1924-39 (decommissioned, 1932 and dismantled, 1940)
  • (ZRS-4) Akron
    USS Akron (ZRS-4)
    USS Akron was a helium-filled rigid airship of the United States Navy that was lost in a weather-related accident off the New Jersey coast early on April 4, 1933, killing 73 of the 76 crew and passengers on board...

     - aircraft carrier 1931-33 (lost in a storm 1933)
  • (ZRS-5) Macon
    USS Macon (ZRS-5)
    USS Macon was a rigid airship built and operated by the United States Navy for scouting. She served as a "flying aircraft carrier", launching Curtiss F9C Sparrowhawk biplane fighters. In service for less than two years, in 1935 Macon was damaged in a storm and lost off California's Big Sur coast,...

     - aircraft carrier 1933-35 (lost due to structural failure)

ZR-2 was under contract from Britain where construction had been started on it as the R38. ZR-2 was contracted for in October 1919 while under construction, but crashed in 1921 before the US Navy could take delivery of it and did not officially receive its US designation, though it was painted in accordance of its planned Navy designation. On the fourth test flight of R-38 severe control inputs at low altitude and high speed cause the structural failure of the airship with the loss of the majority of the crew. Sixteen of the men killed were USN training to fly the ship back to Cape May, NJ.

A blimp, or non-rigid airship, is a floating airship without an internal supporting framework or keel. A non-rigid airship differs from a semi-rigid airship and a rigid airship in that it does not have any rigid structure, neither a complete framework nor a partial keel, to help the airbag...

s (non-rigid airships)

  • DN-1-Class Blimp
  • B-Class Blimp
  • C-Class Blimp
  • D-Class Blimp
  • E-Class Blimp
  • F-Class Blimp
  • H-Class Blimp
  • G-Class Blimp
    G-Class Blimp
    -See also:...

  • J-Class Blimp
    J-Class Blimp
    -See also:...

  • K-1 Blimp
  • K-Class Blimp
    K-Class Blimp
    The K-class non-rigid airship was a class of blimps built by the Goodyear Aircraft Company of Akron, Ohio for the United States Navy. These blimps were powered by two radial air-cooled engines mounted on outriggers on the side of the control car that hung under the envelope...

  • L-Class Blimp (ZNN-L)
  • M-Class Blimp
    M-Class Blimp
    -See also:...

  • Goodyear ZP2K (ZSG-2)
  • Goodyear ZP3K (ZSG-3)
  • Goodyear ZP4K (ZSG-4)
  • N-Class Blimp
    N-Class Blimp
    |-References:*Wings Over Boston, Celebrating 75 Years of Naval Aviation, 1986, not copyrighted, Publisher Captain R.A.Perrault, Editor JO2 H.C.Kenyon, page 26-See also:...

     (ZPN-1. ZPG-1)
  • G-Class Blimp
    G-Class Blimp
    -See also:...

     (ZPG-2, ZPG-2W)
  • ZS2G-1 Blimps (ZP5K)
  • ZPG-3W, largest blimp ever built

See also

  • British Blimps operated by the USN
    British blimps operated by the USN
    During the First World War, the US Navy trained crews at British bases, and operated British designed and built blimps on combat patrols. The Navy purchased three types of British blimps. Operations were flown in a US SSZ and airships operated by the Royal Navy....

  • French Blimps operated by the USN
    French Blimps operated by the USN
    Records concerning the history of French airships in US Navy service are fragmentary. A number of airships of various classes were operated by the US Navy during World War I from the French Naval Base at Paimbœuf, which was designated a US Navy Air Station from 1 March 1918 onward...

  • US Army airships
    US Army Airships
    Between 1908 and 1942 the U.S. Army had a program to operate airships. With few exceptions, they were non-rigid "blimps," These airships were intended to perform search and patrol operations in support of coastal fortifications and border patrol. During the 1920s, the Army operated many more...

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