Thursday, August 18, 2022

U.S. Navy Super Hornet made an emergency landing with severed refueling basket

A U.S. Navy F/A-18E Super Hornet from attached to Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 5 made an emergency landing at Naval Air Facility Atsugi, Japan, after its refueling basket became disconnected from an aerial refueling aircraft during an aerial refueling mission in the skies. 

Fire and rescue equipment were on standby when F/A-18E Super Hornet fighter jet attached to Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 5 made an emergency landing at Naval Air Facility Atsugi.

A U.S. Navy fighter jet was forced make an emergency landing because of an incident that occurred during the practice connecting the aircraft’s probe to the basket to fuel in flight. During the flight, there was a mixing of the aircraft and a detachment of the refueling basket from the tanker.


Aerial refueling is the dangerous process of transferring aviation fuel from one military aircraft (the tanker) to another (the receiver) during flight.

The tanker boom operator holds the boom in a static position, while the receiver aircraft then flies the probe into the basket, grimly known as the “iron maiden” by naval aviators because of its unforgiving nature.

Photo by @pon_ikee


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About this Author

Dylan Malyasov
Defense journalist and commentator. Aviation photographer. Dylan leads Defence Blog's coverage of global military news, focusing on engineering and technology across the U.S. defense industry.