The Plan view for carriers is a top down view that can be zoomed and panned around the map. It is the default view for carriers. Note the grey rectangle on the minimap depicting the current field of view. You can also see the current waypoints and the attack setup for the selected flight. Once you have chosen the target for the flight with the Left Mouse Button [LMB] you can grab the attack vector indicator on the circle and drag it to any bearing you desire. Torpedo bombers usually do better with a flank attack while dive bombers do better attackng down the axis of the ship; or so I have been told. Note the attack plan is shown in the minimap as well.
Center View on Carrier
The control section identifies this as "Bring View Back to Ship". It is the last selection in the controls settings menu. Many patches ago all ships could press shift and pan a top down view anywhere on the map and spin the camera in any direction. That has gone away for all classes but carriers. Still, for carriers is is very handy to be able to center the top down view on their ship in order to navigate the vessel or see what is threatening them. Pressing [Space] brings the view back to the carrier.