I was reading this answer here Aviation.SE, which includes the following video of multiple F7U-3 Cutlasses landing aboard the USS Hancock in 1955 (warning, video includes footage of a fatal rampstrike):
I notice that each and every pilot is landing with the canopy open. Why is this?
I'm not a pilot, so these are uneducated guesses:
It could be opened for visibility reasons, except I'm guessing it'd be forward visibility that's be most important, and the sliding canopy doesn't do that any obvious favors. And according to Wikipedia, the plane's high cockpit was already designed for good visibility for carrier landings.
My other guess would be that the canopy is opened in case of a bad landing/fire (less bad than the rampstrike later in the video), and the pilot has to get out in a hurry. But I doubt it'd make a huge difference as the pilot's (presumably) still strapped in. And if he can open the canopy while on approach to a carrier landing, it's probably fairly straightforward.
Last guess would be that it's in case the pilot has to eject, yet he should be able to do that, open canopy or no. Besides, the seat would still hit the canopy upon ejection, it seems - maybe just-in-case to avoid the pilot's head hitting first?