For the last 60 years, the US Navy has launched fighters from carrier decks using steam catapults. While that made for some atmospheric Top Gun shots, the jerky motion adds wear-and-tear to aircraft and pilots alike. The military is now ready to test the next generation Electromagnetic Aircraft Launch System (EMALS) aboard the new USS Gerald R. Ford after successful land trials (see the video below). EMALS uses a prescribed dose of electromagnetic energy to smoothly launch a variety of aircraft at the precise speeds needed, reducing stress on airframes. It's more adaptable to different aircraft and launch conditions than current catapults, and is well-suited for lightweight drone systems like the X-47B now aboard US carriers.