Tag Archives: super hornet

Christian Marine, Fighter Pilot Find New Callings

Alan Clyne recently retired from the US Marine Corps after a long career. Clyne was in Iraq in 2005 when he was tasked with driving an armored bulldozer to clear a path for engaged fellow Marines:

It was there, at a tiny forward operating base called Camp Gannon in November 2005, that Chief Warrant Officer 4 Clyne and a fellow Marine, Master Sgt. Scott Witmer, hopped aboard an armored Caterpillar D9 bulldozer that neither man had been trained to operate and drove into a high-risk rescue mission in an active combat zone.

A tank accompanied them — from Read more

Two F/A-18s Crash off North Carolina Coast

Two US Navy F/A-18 Super Hornets crashed last Thursday during a “routine training mission” off the North Carolina coast. All four crewmembers ejected safely.

The Navy initially reported only that they crashed, though it was a reasonable conclusion they collided (as confirmed later by the Navy):

The fighters were based in Virginia Beach and collided about 10:40 a.m., said Navy spokesman Ensign Mark Rockwellpate. Witnesses reported seeing four parachutes floating down into the Atlantic after the incident.

As with every incident, the Navy will investigate the mishap and report on it at some point in the coming months.  Read more

Fighter Pilot Followed Rules, but Must Defend his Wings

In January, a US Navy F/A-18E Super Hornet flew over Berkeley, California, creating smiles, a news story, and setting off a few car alarms.

The Navy “investigated” and determined the pilot (“naval aviator”) violated no rules. In fact, he was under FAA control at the time, and Air Traffic Control approved his altitude and flight path.

Yet the pilot will still have to defend his wings and flying career:  Read more

F/A-18E Pilot Ejects, in Critical Condition

According to the US Navy, an F/A-18E Super Hornet pilot ejected last Wednesday and was picked up by a local fisherman. The pilot is reportedly hospitalized in critical condition, with local news reports saying he was having trouble breathing when the fisherman recovered him.

The pilot (or aviator, in Navy parlance) was ultimately picked up by an MH-60 — from the same squadron that suffered a helicopter loss the week prior.

The Super Hornet was assigned to the “Pukin’ Dogs” of VFA-143 out of Oceana Naval Air Station. As is the usual practice, the Navy will investigate the incident.


Super Hornet Crashes in Mideast, Crew Ejects

The US Navy reported an F/A-18F Super Hornet crashed while operating off the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower in the North Arabian Sea:

Search and Rescue (SAR) swimmers from an SH-60F of HS-5 “Night Dippers” recovered the two aircrew and safely delivered them back to the carrier.

Unlike Air Force reports, which withhold details until a month-long investigation is completed, the initial Navy release speculated as to the cause of the crash:

The two aircrew, from VFA-103 “Jolly Rogers” based in Virginia Beach, Va., safely ejected from their jet when it incurred an engine failure at 12:20 p.m. local time.

In case you were wondering, the F/A-18 has two engines.


US Navy Electromagnetically Launches E-2

The US Navy used its in-development Electromagnetic Aircraft Launch System (EMALS) to launch an E-2D Hawkeye last week.

The upcoming Gerald R. Ford class of aircraft carriers will be the first that abandons the steam catapult for the EMALS, marking a significant change in naval aviation.  To date, the EMALS has also launched F/A-18E Super Hornets, T-45 Goshawks, and the C-2A Greyhound.

The Navy posted videos of the launch, in which the traditional steam is noticeably absent, on YouTube.

Fighter Pilots Grounded after Flyby

Two F/A-18E Super Hornet pilots were grounded–permanently–after a board decided that their flyby of a college football game was intentionally too low and thus “unsafe.”  A Military Times article states that the pilots performed a flyby of the November 7, 2009 Georgia Tech v Wake Forest game below the 1,000 foot minimum set by Navy rules…and then reported the incident after landing.  (The flyby in question is on YouTube, which also lists the names of the pilots and indicates they were both 96 grads of Georgia Tech.  The flyby was low-speed, gear down, and high power.)

The pilots went before a Naval Aviator Evaluation Board, which is likely Read more