The US Navy’s newest aircraft recovery system Advanced Arresting Gear (AAG) has performed 22 aircraft arrestments in around 26 minutes.
The AAG achieved the milestone during testing at the Runway Arrested Landing Site (RALS) in Lakehurst, New Jersey.
According to the navy, the test represents the aircraft recovery system’s most demanding test event to date.
The US Navy’s Air Test and Evaluation Squadron (VX) 23 tested the capability of the AAG thermal management system to remove excess heat in scenarios that simulated the conditions encountered aboard an aircraft carrier.
The AAG is being developed by General Atomics for the navy’s newest Gerald R Ford-class aircraft carriers.
The series of tests are part of the evaluation process to ensure the system meets the operational requirements of the USS Gerald R Ford (CVN 78).
Aircraft Launch and Recovery Equipment (PMA-251) programme manager captain Ken Sterbenz said: “This never-before accomplished test event was effectively executed with herculean efforts by a collaborative programme office-fleet team.”
The testing also involved personnel from General Atomics, PMA-251, Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division Lakehurst and maintainers from Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 8.
It was performed with five F/A-18E/F Super Hornet aircraft.
Sterbenz added: “This achievement represents a significant datapoint for AAG performance as experienced at our single-engine land-based site. I’m highly confident with AAG going into CVN 78 Aircraft Compatibility Testing early next year where the full, three-engine recovery system configuration will be utilised.”
The AAG test programme has completed over 2,600 dead-load arrestments and more than 1,570 aircraft arrestments.
General Atomics’ turbo-electric Advanced Arresting Gear solution allows for the ‘controlled and reliable’ deceleration of aircraft.
It can arrest an increased range of aircraft and enable higher availability.