- The Washington Times - Thursday, June 18, 2015

The U.S. Navy’s new Electromagnetic Aircraft Launch System (EMALS) is so powerful that it can skip a 4-ton cart across the water like a pebble.

The new system, which uses technology similar to a rail gun, was tested in Newport News, Virginia, on Wednesday. A YouTube video uploaded by the U.S. Navy shows crewmembers of the USS Gerald Ford cheer as a test sled soars off the deck and into the ocean.

Popular Mechanics reported Thursday that the sled appears to be similar in nature to a 7,900 version used for other tests. The website said that EMALS will eventually be capable of “flinging payloads of 80,000 pounds, more than the average fighter jet.”

The Navy plans to launch an operational aircraft from a ship sometime in 2017, Popular Mechanics reported. The system has already launched aircraft during land-based tests.

• Douglas Ernst can be reached at dernst@washingtontimes.com.

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