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The LSO will be able to see the nose gear landing lights to make sure that the aircraft's angle of attack is at $8.1^\circ$ if the aircraft is "on speed". Are these lights (all 3 of them) attached to the landing gear on all the time or at their desired level of angle of attack?

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No. The lights match the standard AoA indexer in the cockpit.

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When the airplane is on AoA, the center amber light is illuminated, as is the amber ‘donut’ on the AoA display. If the airplane is at a higher AoA, the upper green light illuminates as does the green caret on the AoA display. Shallow AoA, the lower red light and red caret lights.

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    $\begingroup$ Just curious, is the main bright white light not illuminated during the carrier approach and landing? If it was, seems those colored lights would be hard to see--. Also do those colored lights have a more specific and correct name than "landing lights"? $\endgroup$ May 21 at 13:43
  • $\begingroup$ I’m not sure on that one. It may be that landing lights are not used during carrier flight operations for that reason. $\endgroup$ May 21 at 13:47
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    $\begingroup$ Correct, landing lights are always off for carrier ops, it's in the checklist to verify. P.S. Good answer, but I don't think "no" at the beginning is necessary or correct. The question is either/or... $\endgroup$ May 21 at 15:57
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The colored approach lights that the LSOs reference are not unique to the legacy Hornet, every carrier based aircraft is similarly equipped. These lights come on as soon as the gear is down and locked, and as such can provide secondary external confirmation of landing gear status in case there is an unsafe indication in the cockpit. During carrier operations the bright white landing light is left off to ensure that they can be seen by the LSOs.

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