Incredible Jet Landing on an Aircraft Carrier
Incredible Jet Landing on an Aircraft Carrier AV-8B Harrier jet with no front gear to land on the USS Bataan makes an incredible maneuver when the marine pilot brings the nose of the jet down on a padded stool for an absolutely perfect landing.
The pilot, Capt. William Mahoney, explains that when his front landing gear didn’t work, a colleague in the ship’s tower suggested improvising by putting the plane’s nose down on the stool.
But the plan’s success would depend on him putting the aircraft down in exactly the spot they usually do, even though he couldn’t see the stool as he descended.
Since there is no way to train to land in this kind of situation, the pilot had to fly a perfect vertical landing, using the ship lighting system and the help of a landing signal officer or landing safety officer (LSO) on his first attempt.
Capt. Mahoney was deployed with the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit, of Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, which at the time was travelling at sea with the U.S. Navy on the Bataan and two other ships.
The McDonnell Douglas (now Boeing) AV-8B Harrier II is a single-engine ground-attack aircraft that constitutes the second generation of the Harrier Jump Jet family. Capable of vertical or short takeoff and landing (V/STOL), the aircraft was designed in the late 1970s as an Anglo-American development of the British Hawker Siddeley Harrier, the first operational V/STOL aircraft. Named after a bird of prey, it is primarily employed on light attack or multi-role missions, ranging from close air support of ground troops to armed reconnaissance.
USS Bataan is a Wasp-class amphibious assault ship in the United States Navy. The ship is named for the Battle of Bataan in the Philippines, during World War II.
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