The Battle of Midway redefined the central importance of air superiority for the remainder of the war when the Japanese suddenly lost their four main aircraft carriers and were forced to return home. Had Japan won the battle as thoroughly as the U. Japanese pilots reported to Nagumo that a second aerial attack on Midway's defenses would be necessary if troops were to go ashore by 7 June. On 10 June, the Imperial Japanese Navy conveyed to the military liaison conference an incomplete picture of the results of the battle. Naval Oceanographic Office searched for the Japanese aircraft carriers. Navy commissioned more than two dozen fleet and light fleet carriers, and numerous escort carriers. To aid his aviators, who had launched at extreme range, he had continued to close with Nagumo during the day and persisted as night fell. Under heavy anti-aircraft fire, they dropped their bombs. A few TBDs managed to get within a few ship-lengths range of their targets before dropping their torpedoes—close enough to be able to strafe the enemy ships and force the Japanese carriers to make sharp evasive maneuvers—but all of their torpedoes either missed or failed to explode.
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