vaq137good14 Dec –Installation of the Pilot Landing Aid Television system (PLAT) was completed on Coral Sea, the first carrier to have the system installed for operational use. Designed to provide a video tape of every landing, the system was useful for instructional purposes and in the analysis of landing accidents making it a valuable tool in the promotion of safety. By early 1963, all attack carriers had been equipped with PLAT and plans were underway for its installation in antisubmarine carriers and at shore stations. (ed. – and a whole generation of Ready Room LSOs is born… – SJS)


Bad Landing On Aircraft Carrier



  1. claudio

    Wow, something the CORAL SEA was first in…having spent 4 years on her, I’ve spent many a nights watching the PLAT. Best thing was about midnight or so, late recovery, 18 comes in and the missile off its stbd wingtip keeps going, streaight towards the bow full of parked A/C. At the last minute, it turns left over the angled deck.

    Youre right about the below deck LSO. heck, even before I knew better, as a mere snipe of 18, I thought I could tell when someone did good or not.

  2. Bill the Shoe

    Coral Sea, 87-88 Med cruise, in transit to Alexandria. Rough as a cob; no regular flight ops.

    COD with 17 souls on board. Normal approach, a little low. Power call late. Wallows, scrapes a couple of inches off the starboard lower vertical stabilizer on the rounddown, overcorrects again. Left wingtip misses the port catwalk by 3 feet. Goaround.

    Boss screams at the pilot to go home. Pilot says, sorry, can’t make it back dirty, and I had to blow the gear down. And by the way, one engine has been rough since about half an hour out of Crete.

    He made it down the second try. Blistering interview with Boss interrupted by call to visit CO. Blistering interview with CO interrupted by call to visit Admiral. Blistering interview with Admiral uninterrupted. FNAEB: good judgment, failure to exercise.

    Since by grace of God no-one was hurt, there were lots of belowdecks LSOs.

  3. Claudio


    I was there for that. The left wing was pretty much below the flight deck. scary as hell.

    Hard work but good ship.

  4. Thomas Barton, J.D.

    🙂 SJS, Could you elaborate on Bill the Shoe’s Dec. 19 post ? It sounds harrowing and it seems like there might be an entry idea concerning the flight deck , close oh so close calls and the ensuing ( and bit difficult to understand the jargon) tete a tetes with the Boys at the Top of the Food Chain.

  5. Steeljawscribe


    Try this:
    Pitching Deck (Pt 1)
    Pitching Deck (Pt 2)
    – SJS

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