If the water-brake cylinder elbow pressure drops
below minimum value the water brakes should be
suspended and the CCP/main control console operator
notified immediately. The malfunctioning water-brake
pump should be secured and the standby pump started.
Do not allow excessive oil to accumulate on top of
the water in the water-brake reservoir. Skim off the oil,
or remove it by adding fresh water and allowing the oil
to flow out the overflow drain.
During in-port periods, do not skim the
water-brake tanks or allow the water level to
reach the overflow pipe. Maintain the water
level by use of bottom tank drains. This is to
prevent oil from being dumped into harbors.
All loose gear and tools must be kept clear of the
retraction engine and cable system. Maintain all
pressures at predetermined settings.
If any malfunction is observed during the advance
of the grab or the retraction of the shuttle and grab,
immediately SUSPEND the retract engine and notify
the CCP/main console operator. All sheaves must be
inspected for freedom of motion before beginning a
series of launchings.
Operating personnel should wear appropriate
protective clothing to prevent burns from steam or from
contact with hot metallic surfaces. Earplugs should be
worn in areas of high noise level.
The entire hydraulic system must be vented
thoroughly and frequently, particularly after extended
periods of idleness. Air in the fluid system may cause
unpredictable variations in catapult performance and
delays in actuation of operating components.
Combustible and volatile fluids and materials must
be kept away from heated catapult parts to reduce the
hazard of fire and explosion. Adequate ventilation must
be provided below flight deck level to prevent the
accumulation of explosive vapors.
If a hangfire occurs, personnel must not pass
forward of the aircraft until all danger of a delayed
launching has passed.
The catapult must NOT be operated with any
known broken lockwires, loose or cracked components,
major hydraulic leakage, defective reeving, or electrical
During any type of launching, live steam escapes
from the track and brake areas. As this steam can cause
severe scalding of exposed areas of the body, personnel
in the area must avoid contact with it. When the catapult
is in operating status, exposed metallic parts, such as
track covers, launching and exhaust valves, and steam
supply piping, may be hot enough to burn exposed
areas of the body on contact. Therefore, operating
personnel with duties in these areas should be equipped
with appropriate protective clothing.
Aircraft launchings must NOT be made if the
required minimum cylinder elongation has not been
attained. An exception to this rule may be made under
requirements have been increased as specified in
applicable Aircraft Launching Bulletins.
Aircraft must not be launched at weights and wind
requirements other than those specified in applicable
Aircraft Launching Bulletins. Maximum loading of
aircraft as specified in the NATOPS Manual for each
type of aircraft, must be adhered to at all times.
Inspect all pumps and their limit switches and
safety valves. Failure of safety devices can result in
dangerous overpressures if the pump continues to
operate. This condition may result in rupture of
hydraulic pneumatic lines and danger to personnel.
SECURING THE CATAPULT
At the completion of aircraft launching operations,
the catapult officer shall decide what state of catapult
readiness conditions will be established:
The order to maintain the catapult in a READY
condition should be given when launching operations
are intermittent or when certain conditions make it
necessary to keep the catapult in a state of preparedness
for launching within seconds after an order is given.
In the READY condition, the catapult is kept in a
fully operational status, as between launching cycles.