Судьба F-16


Rare IRST Pod Toting "Ghost" F-16D Likely Based At Area 51 Spotted In Star Wars Canyon
You never know what you are going to catch flying through Rainbow Canyon, and in this case the photographer caught a rare specimen indeed.
By Tyler Rogoway
November 24, 2017

"At first glance the Block 30 F-16D pictured above, serial number 86-0052, may look like any other F-16, but upon closer examination its registration and the unique equipment it carries makes it clear that it is anything but.

On the right intake "chin" station, the F-16 carries an infrared search and track (IRST) pod."

"Amazingly, just days ago, what is likely this same exact F-16 was photographed doing just that near Area 51. In this case it was chasing an F-117 Nighthawk, with what appears to be its IRST pod attached. I have long posited that a handful of F-117s still flying are being used to evaluate new low observable applications and radar attenuating structures."

за что не люблю роговая - он дико многословен. модель пода установили? вроде LM, но как-то не похож на легион
за что не люблю роговая - он дико многословен. модель пода установили? вроде LM, но как-то не похож на легион
А в чем вообще интрига? Сам Локхид говорит:
Legion Pod has completed integration and flight tests on F-16 and F-15C aircraft, successfully demonstrating its detection and tracking capabilities in representative threat environments.
хз. не нашел у легиона лазерного дальномера. может без него обойдутся - или подвесят и легион и снайпер, но есть рассуждения, что можно без него - с помощью триангуляции. трекать могут оба, но легион лучше обнаруживает.
адептам механического скана предлагается выкинуть свои телевизоры и заменить моделями с диском нипкова
почитав все что нашел по F-16XL - вот что подумалось. а не совершила ли натовская военщина грандиозную ошибку в развитии F-16?
As the recognized “Father of the F-16,” and Chief Project Engineer during the concept formulation and preliminary design phases of the F-16XL and Vice President and Deputy Program Director during the prototype phase, the article was of considerable interest to me. The disappointment was that only one side of the issue was presented, a highly biased, self-interest input that does not adequately, nor accurately, present the real story of the selection of the F-15E.

First, it should be understood that we (General Dynamics) did not initiate the F-16XL as a competitor to the F-15E, then identified as the F-15 Strike Eagle. We stated as unequivocally as possible to the Air Force, that the Dual-Role mission should be given to the F-15: that the F-15 should complement the F-16 in ground strike missions in the same manner that the F-16 complements the F-15 in air-air missions. A fundamental tenet of the F-16, from its inception, has been as an air-air complement to the F-15—no radar missile capability, no M=2.0+ capability, no standoff capability: a multi-mission fighter whose primary mission was air-surface with backup air-air capability.

We proposed the F-16XL as a logical enhancement of its air-to-surface capabilities. The F-16C represented a progressive systems enhancement and the XL would be an airframe enhancement optimized more to its air-surface mission—lower weapons carriage drag and minimum dependence on external fuel tanks.

The statement that “a prototype version of the F-15E decisively beat an F-16 variant called the F-16XL,” is misinformation. I don’t know what was meant by “beat,” it is patently true that McDonnell-Douglas clearly won what was called a “competition.” However, by the Air Force’s own definition, it was, in reality, an evaluation to determine which airplane would be better suited to the dual-role mission. In a formal competition, each party is evaluated against a common set of requirements and conditions. Such was not the case for the dual-role fighter. The F-15 Strike Eagle and the F-16XL were evaluated and flight tested to different sets of conditions and to different test plans—no common basis for evaluation existed.

The F-15 had only one clear advantage in the evaluation—a “paper” advantage. The weapon loading for one of the missions used in the evaluation precluded the use of external fuel tanks on the F-16XL; the F-15 could carry that particular weapon loading and still carry external fuel tanks, the F-16XL could not. That one mission was the only place the F-15 had a clear advantage. (It should be noted that a fundamental design feature of the XL was the elimination of external fuel tanks with their attendant restrictions on flight limits and their weight and drag penalty.)

Further, the Air Force would not allow us to use the GE F110 engine in our proposal even though the No. 2 XL, the 2-place version, was powered by a F110 engine and provided better performance than the P&W F100 engine. And although you would expect the F-16’s clear advantage to be cost, the Air Force treated the F-15E as a simple modification to a planned production buy and the F-16XL as a totally new buy. Neither airplane used in the flight test evaluation was a “prototype” of a dual-role fighter. The F-15 was closer systems and cockpit-wise than the F-16XL and the F-16XL was closer, much closer, airframe-wise.

The F-16XLs were designed to, and flew, at their maximum design gross weight of 48,000 pounds, whereas the F-15, more than once, blew its tires while taxiing at 73,000 pounds, well below its maximum design gross weight [which was 81,000 pounds], a condition not demonstrated in the flight test program.

In a meeting that I attended with General Creech, then TAC CINC [Commander-in-Chief], the general stated that either air¬plane was fully satisfactory. When asked why he and his staff only mentioned the F-15 (never the F-16XL) in any dual-role fighter statement or discussion, he gave a reply that was impossible to refute, “We have to do that because the F-16 has a heart and soul of its own and we have to sell the F-15.” I’ll have to admit that I sat mute upon hearing that statement because there was no possible retort.

We had no allusions as to what the outcome of the Dual-role fighter “competition” would be and debated whether to even respond to the request for information. We did submit, knowing full well that it was a lost cause and that to not submit would be an affront to the Air Force who badly needed the appearance of a competition to justify continued procurement of the F-15—they had patently been unable to sell the F-15 Strike Eagle for five years. As is the case with too much in our culture today, the Air Force was more interested in style, in appearances, than in substance.

Even today, I feel that giving the F-15 a precision air-surface capability was proper and badly needed. What continues to disturb me is that the F-16XL had to be a pawn in that decision and had to be so badly denigrated to justify the decision—a selection that could have been made on its own merits.
Совет министров Болгарии дал зеленый свет на покупку F-16C/D Block 70:
Стоимость контракта составляет $1,256 млрд. для восьми самолетов с необходимым оборудованием. Для завершения сделки необходимо и одобрение парламента Болгарии