Two Super Hornet video clips

The Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet and its EA-18G Growler electronic warfare variant are currently the front-line fighter and strike aircraft in the US Navy.  Here are two interesting video clips depicting the aircraft.

The first is from Boeing, showing an E-model (single-seat) on a pre-delivery check flight.  As you can see, the aircraft hasn’t been painted in Navy colors yet.  The test pilot talks us through what’s involved, with some great video shot from the cockpit.

The next, from the US Navy, is a G-model (two-seat) being launched from the prototype EMALS (Electromagnetic Aircraft Launch System) electrical catapult system, which will be installed on USS Gerald R. Ford, the Navy’s next carrier, when she becomes operational in 2016.  Note the absence of steam from the catapult track, unlike previous-generation catapults.

Very capable aircraft they are, too.  I hope Boeing gets to build its proposed ‘Advanced Super Hornet‘, particularly with more powerful engines.  However, budget constraints may render that impossible.



  1. Good birds, and yeah, we're screwed on the upgraded engines… Gotta pay for the 'spare' F-35 engine…

  2. Boeing's been thinking up updated versions of stuff. The Silent Eagle, now the Advanced Hornet.

    Too bad Lockheed keeps getting the military to throw money down the bottomless hole that is their programs. We could save some money AND have something that works (to say nothing of having it before the heat death of the universe). But no, the Air Force absolutely MUST have the funky looking new planes, whether they work or not.

  3. The increased fuel capacity and range of the Advanced Super Hornet would be the big selling point for me. Hornets are notoriously short-legged bugs, but the "stealth" aspects are just so much buzzword bingo. It might be a bit stealthier until you hang bombs and drop tanks on it to make it a useful strike aircraft. Once you do that, you can hang your "stealth" out to dry.

    Of course, the F-35's weapons load is painfully small unless you use the external hardpoints and sacrifice stealth. I'd write off the F-35 as a lost cause (as lost for the Navy as the F-111B), but by no means have all the R&D costs been wasted. Some of the technology can be used. But our broken procurement system pretty much ensures that any use of it is at least another decade away, probably further. F-35 should've been named 'Turkey' or 'Gold-Plated Albatross', not 'Lightning II'

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