Operations took place on the USS George H.W. Bush in the Ionian Sea

The landing and takeoff of a French Rafale fighter on an American aircraft carrier

The US and French navies have in common that they use the same systems to launch and pick up their fixed-wing aircraft from their aircraft carriers.

The impressive entry into dry dock of the aircraft carrier USS Essex in fast motion
The joint deployment of aircraft carriers of Spain and the United States in the Ionian Sea

For years, the French aircraft carriers (the Clemenceau, the Foch and the Charles de Gaulle) have had arresting cables for the landing of their planes and steam catapults for their takeoff. This offers the advantage that any French aircraft could operate from a US aircraft carrier, and vice versa. Until years ago this was only a theoretical reality, until on June 4, 2010, a French Navy Rafale fighter became the first foreign plane to land on a US aircraft carrier, specifically in the USS Harry S. Truman, of the Nimitz class.

The US Navy published yesterday a video in which we can see the operations of a French Rafael fighter on another Nimitz-class aircraft carrier, the USS George H.W. Bush. The landing and takeoff took place on November 23 in the waters of the Ionian Sea, during a joint deployment of the US Sixth Fleet along with French naval units:

We can see below some captures of this video. Here a failed approach of the French fighter . In addition to this one, he made two failed landings, what in the US Navy they call a "touch and go", which is what happens when a plane manages to land on the flight deck but fails to hook a arresting cable and has to return. take off to try again. Landing on an aircraft carrier is a very difficult maneuver.

On the fourth attempt, the French fighter finally managed to hook the third arresting cable and the landing was successful.

The French fighter already positioned on one of the carrier's catapults. We see the jet deflector already raised on the flight deck, behind the French fighter. The catapult officer (in yellow vest) is signaling the French pilot to launch.

The catapult officer gives the takeoff signal to the French pilot. In the video you can see the complete takeoff sequence.

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