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These mighty beasts are among the most powerful weapons of war ever deployed
Since it's impossible to take off on the short runway of an aircraft carrier conventionally, four catapults are used to give planes an extra boost. These catapults have two pistons that sit inside parallel cylinders that are positioned under the deck. These pistons are roughly 100 yards in length!
Taking off from an aircraft carrier, pilots say, is like getting a punch in the face. The combination of the catapaults and the plane's afterburners get it to go from 0 to almost 300 km/h in 2 seconds!
-Picture courtesy Reuters-
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