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The first ever Shipborne Rolling Vertical Landing (SRVL) has been carried out by an F-35B Lightning II joint strike fighter jet conducting trials onboard the UK’s new carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth. The UK is the only nation currently planning to use the manoeuvre, which will allow jets to land onboard with heavier loads, meaning they won’t need to jettison expensive fuel and weapons before landing.

A Merlin Mk4 From 845 Naval Air Squadron taking off in the SAR role as UK test pilot Peter Wilson, prepares to take off to conduct the worlds first SRVL in the F-35B aircraft.

Previously the jets have conducted vertical landings, coming to a hover to the side of the ship, translating sideways over the deck, before gently lowering to land on. It is regarded as a safer method to reduce speed before the jet lands on in this way, rather than landing on at speed, coming to a stop before it runs out of deck.

UK test pilot Peter Wilson, conducts the worlds first SRVL

An SRVL uses a different approach, with the jet using a more conventional landing pattern, approaching the ship from the aft end, at speed, using the thrust from the nozzle and lift created by air over the wings to touch down and come to a stop as soon as possible.

Today’s landing, conducted by BAE Systems UK test pilot Peter Wilson, took place at exactly 1030 off the east coast of the USA. Landing 755 yards back from the end of the carrier’s ski jump, the jet came to a complete standstill at the 580 yard mark.

| British Armed Forces News

© Crown Copyright 2018
Photographer: LPhot Kyle Heller

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