Vertical takeoff(VTOL) of Harrier jet from carrier

A vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) aircraft is one that can hover, take off, and land vertically. This classification includes fixed-wing aircraft as well as helicopters and other aircraft with powered rotors, such as cyclogyros/cyclocopters and tiltrotors.[1][2][3][4] Some VTOL aircraft can operate in other modes as well, such as CTOL (conventional take-off and landing), STOL (short take-off and landing), and/or STOVL (short take-off and vertical landing). Others, such as some helicopters, can only operate by VTOL, due to the aircraft lacking landing gear that can handle horizontal motion. VTOL is a subset of V/STOL (vertical and/or short take-off and landing).

Besides the ubiquitous helicopter, there are currently two types of VTOL aircraft in military service: craft using a tiltrotor, such as the Bell Boeing V-22 Osprey, and aircraft using directed jet thrust such as the Harrier family. Generally speaking, VTOL aircraft capable of V/STOL use it wherever possible, since it typically significantly increases takeoff weight, range or payload compared to pure VTOL.


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