The electromagnetic Aircraft launch System (EMAlS) successfully completed the first launch of a C-2A greyhound belonging to Air Test and evaluation Squadron Two Zero (VX-20) from the NAVAIR lakehurst, New Jersey, test site June 8. The greyhound was launched 18 times over a wide range of aircraft weights on June 8 and 9 as part of ongoing aircraft compatibility testing. EMAlS, a complete launch system designed for Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) and future ford-class aircraft carriers will replace the steam catapult system which has been in use for more than 50 years.
EMAlS is the Navy’s launch choice for ford-class aircraft carriers, replacing steam catapults used on current and prior generations of aircraft carriers. EMAlS lowers overall operating costs and reduces maintenance over current steam catapults, and provides less ‘wear and tear’ on carrier-based aircraft. EMAlS also expands the mission envelope by launching a broader range of naval aircraft with less stress on the ship and aircraft systems. Implementation of the EMAlS system for the ford-class will meet the Navy’s fixed-wing launch capability, while offering the flexibility to support future carrier air wings.