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Electromagnetic system to replace steam launches on US Navy carriers


In a few years, such launches may still be dramatic, but they'll also be a bit quieter and very plume-free. That's because the US Navy has completed testing of its Electromagnetic Aircraft Launch System (EMALS); clearing it for use on the new Gerald R Ford-class aircraft carriers.

When the Navy launched an F/A-18C Hornet for the first time as part of the second and final test phase of the EMALS at the Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey land-based test site, it opened the way for the system's deployment on US aircraft carriers starting with the USS Gerald R Ford (CVN 78) that is currently under construction at the Huntington Ingalls Industries shipyard in Newport News, Virginia.

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