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F-16 Fighting Falcon
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F-16 Fighting Falcon

F-16 Fighting Falcon

F-16C Fighting Falcon
Role Multi-role fighter
Crew 1 or 2
First Flight
Entered Service
Manufacturer General Dynamics
Length 14.52 m 47 ft 8 in
Wingspan 9.45 m 31 ft
Height 4.8 m 16 ft
Wing Area 27.87 m² 300 ft²
Empty 7,157 kg 15,778 lb
Loaded 10,348 kg 22,814 lb
Maximum Takeoff 16,057 kg 35,400 lb
Engine One Pratt & Whitney; F100-200 afterburning turbofan
Power 106 kN 23,840 lb
Maximum Speed 2,173 km/h 1,350 mph
Combat Range 547 km 340 miles
Ferry Range 3,890 km 2,415 miles
Service Ceiling > 15,240 m > 50,000 ft
Rate of Climb 15,240 m/min 50,000 ft/min
Guns 1 20 mm M61 Vulcan cannon
Bombs CBU-87, CBU-89 Gator Mine, CBU-97 Sensor Fuzed Weapon, Paveway, JDAM, Mk80
Missiles AGM-65 Maverick, AGM-88 HARM, AGM-119 Penguin, AIM-9 Sidewinder, AIM-120 AMRAAM
Other LANTIRN, Electronic counter-measures, fuel tanks

The F-16 Fighting Falcon is a modern US-built, multi-role jet fighter aircraft. It is in use by dozens of countries all over the world.

Table of contents
1 History
2 Versions
3 Inventory
4 Manufacturers
5 Specifications
6 See also
7 External links


From the very beginning, the F-16 was intended to be neither a technical break-through, nor an enormously powerful weapons platform, but rather a cost-effective "workhorse", that could perform various kinds of missions and maintain around-the-clock readiness. This distinguishes the F-16 from its predecessors, many of which were not designed for all-weather operation (F-104) or were extremely expensive / made for aircraft carrier operations (F-14). Because of its sleek, aggressive lines and quick handling, the F-16 earned the monicker "Viper" from its pilots.

From the point of view of design, the F-16 is closer to a fighter than to a ground attack aircraft. It is small and agile, and its canopy is designed for the pilot's optimal visibility, a feature vital during air-to-air combat. For this purpose, the F-16 carries an M61 Vulcan cannon, and can be equipped with air-to-air missiles. However, the F-16 can also perform ground-support tasks if necessary. For that task, it can be equipped with missiles or bombs.

The F-16 originates in a set of specifications the United States Department of Defense issued in 1974. Two companies were chosen during the concept stage: General Dynamics with the YF-16 design and Northrop with a design which bore the name YF-17 Cobra. The F-16 was chosen from the two prototypes; however the two-engined YF-17 was not abandoned and later on became the F/A-18 Hornet.

Initially, the F-16 was manufactured in two models: A (combat version) and B (two seats, used for training). The first time an F-16A took off was in December 1976; the first aircraft was delivered to the US Air Force in January 1979. In the 1980s, the F-16A/B was superseded by the F-16C/D with improved avionics and engine.

Due to their ubiquity, the F-16s have participated in numerous conflicts, most of them in the Middle East. In 1981, 4 Israeli F-16s participated in a raid that destroyed Osiraq, an Iraqi nuclear reactor near Baghdad. The following year, during the invasion into Lebanon, Israeli F-16s engaged on numerous occasions with Syrian aircraft, ending up victorious at all times but one. F-16s were also used afterwards in their ground-attack role for strikes against targets in Lebanon. In the Gulf War of 1991, F-16 from the air forces of the Coalition participated in the strikes against Iraq.



The figures are as of 1992.



See also

External links

Modern USAF Series Miscellaneous
Attack--OA/A-10,AC-130H/U RC-135V/W
Bomber--B-52,-2,-1B,F-117A OC-135B
F-15 Eagle Fighter--F-15/E ,F-16 KC-10,-135
F-15E Strike Eagle Electronic--E-3,-4B,-8C EC-130E/J,H HC-130P/N
F-16 Fighting Falcon Transport--C-5,-17,-141B, -20,-21 MC-130E/H/P
C-22B, -32, -130, -37A, -40B/C MH-53J/M
Trainers--T-1, -37, -38, -43, -6 HH-60G
Weather--WC-130, -135 UH-1N
UAV--RQ-1/MQ-1 UAV, Global Hawk U-2S/TU-2S
Related content
Similar Aircraft IAI Lavi - Mitsubishi F-2 - AIDC Ching-Kuo - Chengdu J-10
Designation Series YF-12 - F-14 - F-15 - F-16 - F-17 - F/A-18 - F-20
Related Lists List of military aircraft of the United States - List of fighter aircraft
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Airlines | Air Forces | Aircraft Weapons | Missiles | Years in Aviation