QinetiQ North America is proud to have developed the user control stations, motor controllers, monitoring systems and advanced sensors that are now part of the US Navy’s CVN-78 USS Ford. Our Electro-Magnetic Aircraft Launch System (EMALS) and Advanced Arresting Gear (AAG) technology is integrated in America’s most modern warship.

QNA has been awarded a contract to deliver control CVN_79_JFKhardware and software for the Electromagnetic Aircraft Launch System (EMALS) and the Advanced Arresting Gear (AAG) to be installed on the Navy’s next aircraft carrier, the future John F. Kennedy (CVN-79).

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More information can be found on the General Atomics website.

Electro-Magnetic Aircraft Launch System (EMALS)
QinetiQ North America has been selected by General Atomics as being the provider of the EMALS and AAG software and hardware for the CVN 78 USS Gerald Ford and future John F. Kennedy CVN 79 aircraft carrier.


The Electromagnetic Aircraft Launch System (EMALS) is designed to replace steam catapult system currently used on U.S. Navy aircraft carriers. Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) is the first carrier to use EMALS.  John F. Kennedy (CVN 79) is the next carrier scheduled to install and use EMALS.

EMALS provides significant benefits over current launch systems, including:

  • Reduced manning and life-cycle cost
  • Reduced thermal signature
  • Increased launch operational ability for manned, unmanned aircraft
  • Reduced topside weight
  • Reduced installed volume

More information can be found on the General Atomics website.

Advanced Arresting Gear (AAG)
The electric motor-based Advanced Arresting Gear (AAG) system provides for aircraft deceleration during aircraft carrier recovery operations. AAG allows for arrestment of a broad range of aircraft, reducing manning and mainteAAG1nance, and provides higher reliability and safety margins. AAG’s design uses simple, proven energy-absorbing water turbines coupled to a large induction motor for fine control of the arresting forces.

The AAG system offers significant benefits over current recovery systems, including:

  • Operational capability to recover projected air wing, with renewed service life margins
  • Full compatibility with Nimitz-class and Ford-class carriers
  • Higher availability
  • Self-diagnosis and maintenance alerts
  • Reduced manning and total ownership cost

pdf_icon_small EMALS Data Sheet   pdf_icon_small  AAG Data Sheet