Navy launches first aircraft using EMALS

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LAKEHURST, N.J. (Dec. 16, 2010) The Navy launches the first aircraft, an F/A-18E Super Hornet, from the Electromagnetic Aircraft Launch System (EMALS) at Naval Air Systems Command, Lakehurst, N.J. The Navy has used steam catapults for more than 50 years to launch aircraft from aircraft carriers. EMALS is a complete carrier-based launch system designed for Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) and future Ford-class carriers. Newer, heavier and faster aircraft will result in launch energy requirements approaching the limits of the steam catapult, increasing maintenance on the system. The system’s technology allows for a smooth acceleration at both high and low speeds, increasing the carrier’s ability to launch aircraft in support of the warfighter. EMALS will provide the capability for launching all current and future carrier air wing platforms from lightweight unmanned aerial vehicles to heavy strike fighters. The first ship components are on schedule to be delivered to CVN 78 in 2011. (U.S. N

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