There are those who have suggested that electro magnetic catapults are a high risk techology which will not be ready in time for Britain's Queen Elizabeth class aircraft carriers.
We have disagreed with this point of view in an earlier post.
For some time now,we have been waiting for the American Electro Magnetic Aircraft Launch System (E.M.A.L.S.) to conduct it's first aircraft launch.
With all the excitement at this time of year we almost missed it.
Here it is:
"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. Navy video/Released)"
The above quote and video is taken from the excellent United States Navy Visual News Service.