The T-45C Goshawk trainer aircraft has begun Advanced Arresting Gear (AAG) performance testing at the Runway Arrested Landing Site (RALS) located at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey on Aug. 13.
This series of testing ensures the new recovery system can support the air wing on board the U.S. Navy’s newest aircraft carrier, USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) .
McDonnell Douglas (now Boeing) T-45 Goshawk is a highly modified version of the British BAE Systems Hawk land-based training jet aircraft used by the U.S. Navy as an aircraft carrier-capable trainer.
In April, the trainer aircraft completed 60 arrestments at RALS during a five-day, risk-reduction test period utilized to evaluate AAG system integrated performance. By the end of this year, the AAG Program is scheduled to release formal approval authorizing T-45 Type Model Series aircraft flight operations on CVN 78.
Advanced Arresting Gear (AAG) is a type of arresting gear currently in development by General Atomics for the U.S. Navy’s newest Gerald R. Ford-class aircraft carriers. It will replace the MK 7 hydraulic arresting gear which is in use on the ten Nimitz-class aircraft carriers.
The AAG system is designed to arrest a broader range of aircraft (including UAVs), reduce the fatigue impact load to the aircraft, and provide higher safety margins while reducing manpower and maintenance.
According to the Aircraft Recovery Bulletin (ARB) released on Aug. 2, AAG system received the green light to recover all “props and jets” aircraft. The ARBs enable propeller aircraft: C-2A Greyhound, E-2C Hawkeye and E-2D Advanced Hawkeye, and jet aircraft: F/A-18E/F Super Hornet and E/A-18G Growler to perform flight operations aboard USS Gerald R. Ford.
ARBs are official Navy instructional documents identifying the weights and engaging speeds authorized for shipboard arrestments of specific aircraft, along with other pertinent information.