The US Navy’s Nimitz-class supercarrier USS George H W Bush (CVN 77) has successfully field-tested the new Maritime Augmented Guidance with Integrated Controls for Carrier Approach and Recovery Precision Enabling Technologies (MAGIC CARPET) software.
MAGIC CARPET software has been developed for F/A-18E/F/G aircraft to adjust the jet’s speed and angle of attack in relation to the intended landing surface automatically.
Initial tests of the system were carried out at Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River in Maryland, US.
Carrier qualification (CQ) operations and the offload of ordnance to the Military Sealift Command dry cargo and ammunition ship USNS William McLean (T-AKE 12) were also carried out by the crew.
US Navy assistant air operations officer lieutenant commander Dan Marzluff said: "This underway marked the first use of the MAGIC CARPET technology on an aircraft carrier. This software greatly reduces misses and wave-offs, which translates into more time on-mission and makes us an overall more effective force.
"The majority of flight operations with the system were touch-and-goes. We didn’t have to actually land to determine how the software takes the aircraft to the flight deck."
USS George H W Bush also carried out CQs with from the ‘Flying Eagles’ of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 122, the ‘Vikings’ of Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) 129, the ‘Lancers’ of VAQ-131, and the ‘Sharpshooters’ of Marine Fighter Attack Training Squadron (VMFAT) 101.
The training offers pilots the opportunity to prepare in carrier-based launches and recoveries in a safer environment than a combat zone.
Lead flight deck controller for VMFAT 101 staff sergent Joshua Bryan said: "We’re getting our pilots qualified for carrier-based operations in legacy F/A-18s, and this underway was the last phase of their training before the pilots are fully qualified."
Image: US Navy’s aircraft carrier, USS George H W Bush. Photo: courtesy of BotMultichillT.