Dassault Mirage 2000

Mirage 2000 (single – and two-seat versions)

Origin: Avions Marcel Dassault/Breguet Aviation. France.

Type: Multi-role fighter with emphasis on interception and air superiority combat.

Engine: One SNECMA M53-5 single-shaft afterburning by-pass turbojet (low-ratio turbofan) with maximum thrust of 12,3501b (5602kg) dry and 19.8401b (9000kg) with afterburner.

Dimensions: Span 29ft 6in (9 0m): length 50ft 3^in (15-33m).

Weights: Empty, not released: normal takeoff, air-intercept mission 33,0001b (14,969kg).

Performance: Maximum speed at 36,000ft (11,000m) Mach 2-3, 1,518mph (2440km/h).

Armament: Two 30mm DEFA 5-53 cannon: normal air-intercept load two Matra Super 530 and two Matra 550 Magic air-to-air missiles: intention is to develop ground-attack version with maximum overload of 1 1,0251b (5000kg) of weapons and/or tanks and ECM pods on five external hard – points.

History: Announcement of project December 1975: first flight 10 March 1978: production delivery, probably late 1982.

Users: Egypt (intended licence-production), France.

Development: In December 1975 the French government cancelled the Dassault-Breguet Super Mirage, which had been publicised as the Avion de Combat Futur and mainstay of the Armee de I’Air in the 1 980s. In its place it announced a decision to award a study contract with Marcel Dassault for a smaller and simpler single-engined delta fighter outwardly looking very much like the Mirage III of 20 years earlier. In fact the Mirage 2000 — some-

Dassault Mirage 2000





Dassault Mirage 2000

Dassault Mirage 2000

Above: Three-view of Dassault Mirage 2000.

times called the Delta 2000 – will differ significantly from the old Mirage, in aerodynamics, propulsion, structure and equipment. Aerodynamically it will be designed to incorporate American discoveries in CCV (control – configured vehicle) technology, in which aircraft are deliberately made unstable – for example, by positioning the centre of gravity much further back than usual – and using high-authority fail-safe flight-control systems to keep them under control. The result is either a smaller wing or, as in the Mirage 2000. dramatically higher manoeuvrability. Unlike the earlier Mirage deltas the 2000 will have leading-edge devices, either hinged droops or some form of slats, which will work in conjunction with the trailing-edge elevons to counteract the unstable pitching moment, or, in

Below: The second prototype Dassault Mirage 2000, with two Matra Super 530 air-to-air missiles (which are intended to be a standard weapon on aircraft of this type with the Armes de I’Air).

Dassault Mirage 2000

tight turn, relax their effort or even help the aircraft to pitch nose-up. In the landing configuration the leading-edge devices (the French call it a "variable-camber" wing) will allow the elevons to be deflected down, adding to lift, whereas in earlier tailless deltas they have to be deflected up, effec­tively adding to weight just at the worst time.

Already the Mirage 2000 is being publicised as "being able to outclass combat aircraft presently being developed and produced in the Western world". It will have: "fly-by-wire" multi-channel electrically signalled flight controls: composite materials, carbon fibre being mentioned: large – radius Karman fairings (a reference to area ruling of the fuselage for minimum transonic drag): an elaborate weapon system with "g. p." (general-purpose?) computer and inertial unit; and long-range digital radar. Ratio of thrust to weight is to exceed unity. Such features are what one would expect of such an aircraft, but the problems are clearly enormous, especially in a time of severe inflation and economic pressures. France has since 1975 made attempts to acquire the base of technology, especially in digital avionics, necessary to build the Mirage 2000, but has little capability as yet. Only a single French aircraft, a two-seat Mirage 111В with Sfena system, has flown with a primitive fly-by-wire system. Thomson-CSF estimate it will take "seven to eight years" to develop a 170-km-range digital radar needed to match the developed Super 530 missile. France has little experience of advanced composite structures, and that only in small test pieces and heli­copters. SNECMA has not announced how the M53 engine, with very limited flight-time and no other application, is going to be increased in thrust by 35 per cent. If the aircraft to fly in 1 978 is truly a prototype, and not the first off a production line, it will need everything to go right to meet an in-service date of 1982 with a developed aircraft. Not least, the proposed price of Fr40 to 50 million (£4 5 to 5-5 million) will be extremely difficult to hold, even in December 1 975 Francs, because the magnitude of the system – development problems to France appear to have been grossly under­estimated.

Dassault Mirage 2000

In the original announcement the Mirage 2000 was described as "limited to high-speed and high-level interception and reconnaissance. . . . Attack and penetration at low levels will be undertaken by a different type." (The cancelled Super Mirage had been intended to fulfil all tactical roles.) But in December 1976 the Chief of Staff of the Armee de I’Air said he personally considered it would be necessary to build an interdictor and reconnaissance (he implied at low level) version of the Mirage 2000. It became known at this time that the new delta will apparently have nine weapon stations, which is diametrically opposed to the uncompromised high-altitude dog – finht concent announced in December 1975: and low-level use is dia-

metrically opposed to a large-area delta. The Armee de I ‘Air has from the start hoped to buy 200 Mirage 2000s, twice the number it judged it could afford of the Super Mirage. But future progress of the programme, helped by US industry strictly on an inter-company rather than a government basis, will be instructive to watch.

Hindustan HF-24 Marut

HAL HF-24 Mk I, IT and II

Origin: Hindustan Aeronautics, India.

Type: Single-seat fighter and ground attack (IT, two-seat trainer). Engines: Two 4,8501b (2200kg) thrust Rolls-Royce (originally-Bristol, then Bristol Siddeley) Orpheus 703 single-shaft turbojets, licence-made by HAL.

Dimensions: Span 26ft 63ІП (9m): length 52ft Ofin (15-87m); height 11ft 9Jin (3-6m).

Weights: (Mk I) empty 13,6581b (6195kg): loaded (clean) 19,7341b (8951kg): loaded (maximum) 24,085lb (10,925kg).

Performance: Maximum speed, 691 mph (111 2km/h, Mach 0-91) at sea level, about 675mph (1086km/h, Mach 1-02) at altitude: time to climb to 40,000ft (12,200m) 9min 20sec: range on internal fuel about 620 miles (1000km).

Armament: Four 30mm Aden Mk 2 cannon each with 1 20 rounds, retract­able Matra pack of 50 SNEB 68mm rockets, and four wing pylons each rated at 1.0001b (454kg).

History: First flight 17 June 1961: (pre-production) March 1963: (series production) 15 November 1967; (Mk IT) 30 April 1970.

User: India.

Hindustan HF-24 Marut
Development: After 1950 the Indian government decided to authorise development of an Indian combat aircraft, and the services of Dipl -1 ng Kurt Tank, the renowned Focke-Wulf designer, were secured to lead a new team formed by Hindustan Aircraft at Banglore. Detail design began in 1956, the objective being to create a multi-role aircraft potentially capable of reach­ing Mach 2 with minimal technical risk. The prototype, powered by two of the same engines already being produced for the Gnat, proved generally successful, and two of the 18 pre-production Maruts ("Wind Spirit")-were officially handed over (though as a token delivery) to the IAF in May 1964, the year the company reorganised and expanded into its present form as

Hindustan Aeronautics. By the end of 1 976 about 100 production Mk Is had been delivered, many of them being used (without loss) in the December 1971 war against Pakistan. The Mk IT has a second Martin-Baker seat in place of the rocket pack and has since 1974 also been produced in small numbers as a dual conversion and weapon trainer. In 1967 the German staff left and an Indian design team has since continued the 20-year search for a more powerful engine. HAL has tested afterburning engines and flew the Marut IBX with one Orpheus replaced by an Egyptian Brandner E-300. but the most likely solution will be the HSS-73 (Marut III) with two Turbo – Union RB.1 99 engines in a considerably improved airframe. Despite obvious handicaps HAL has already created a useful multi-role platform which could carry radar, cameras or other equipment and has reached a satis­factory state of operational development. The Mk III could continue the same basic design to the end of the century.

Hindustan HF-24 Marut

Hindustan HF-24 Marut

Left: One of the production HF-24 Marut Mk 1 fighter/ attack aircraft, with four guns and underwing drop tanks.

Hindustan HF-24 Marut
Below: This more recent Mk 1 Marut has noticeably different dielectric (electronics aerial) fairings on the spine and fin, besides having the upper cannon deleted and blanked off.

Mikoyan/Gurevich MiG-27

MiG-27 "Flogger D” and "Flogger F"

Origin: The design bureau named for. Mikoyan and Gurevich,. Soviet Union: no production outside the Soviet Union yet reported.

Type: Single-seat tactical attack, probably with reconnaissance capability. Engine: One Tumansky R-29B afterburning turbofan rated at 17,6401b (8000kg) dry and 25,3501b (11,500kg) with full afterburner. Dimensions: Similar to MiG-23 except fuselage nose is longer but pitot head shorter giving fractionally shorter overall length: height about 1 5ft (4-6m).

Weights (estimated): Empty 17,3001b (7850kg): maximum loaded 44,3101b (20,100kg).

Performance: Maximum speed at low level (clean) about Mach 10, (maximum weight) subsonic: maximum speed at high altitude (clean) about 1,055mph (1700km/h, Mach 1 -6): take-off to 50ft (1 5m) at 34,600lb (15,700kg) 2,625ft (800m): service ceiling (clean) about 50,000ft (15,250m): combat radius with bombs and one tank (hi-lo-hi) 600 miles (960km): ferry range (wings spread with three tanks) over 2,000 miles (3200km).

Armament: One 23mm six-barrel Gatling-type gun in belly fairing: seven external pylons (centreline, fuselage flanks under inlet ducts, fixed wing gloves and swing-wings) for wide range of ordnance including guided missiles (AS-7 "Kerry") and tactical nuclear weapons to total weight of 4,200lb (1900kg). All ECM are internal and all’pylons are thus usable by weapons or tanks. Those on the outer wings are not always fitted: they are piped for drop tanks, but do not pivot and thus may be loaded only when the wings remain unswept.

History: First flight, possibly about 1970: service delivery, before 1974. Users: Cuba, Egypt, E Germany, Iraq, Poland, Soviet Union, Syria.

Development: Derived from the same variable-geometry prototype flown by the MiG bureau at the 1967 Aviation Day. this aircraft was at first called ”MiG-23B" in the West but is now known to have a different Soviet service designation that is almost certainly MiG-27. Bureau numbers are generally unknown for the MiG series: Mikoyan himself died in December 1970 and Gurevich in November 1976. and recent designs are known only by their service numbers. Compared with the MiG-23 this attack version carries heavier loads and is simpler and optimised for low-level operation. The air­frame differs in having a shallower nose with a flat pointed profile housing mapping/terrain-following radar, laser ranger, doppler radar and radio alti­meter, with good pilot view ahead and downward. The cockpit is heavily armoured. The engine is more powerful than that of the MiG-23 but is fed by fixed inlets and has a shorter and simpler nozzle. Main wheels are fitted with large low-pressure tyres, and special provision is made for rough-field opera­tion. Internal ECM equipment is extensive, and pods on the wing-glove leading edges appear to contain an opto-electronic seeker (left) and passive radar receiver (right). Internal fuel capacity is estimated at 1,1 83 Imp gallons

Mikoyan/Gurevich MiG-27

Above: Three-view of MiG-27 without swing-wing pylons.

(5380lit) including fuel in the fin: no provision for flight refuelling has been noted. The "Flogger F” has the engine installation and gun of the MiG-23, with variable inlets, and lack the comprehensive MiG-27 avionics. These are thought to be development aircraft or an export version. Possible problems with the basic aircraft are suggested by reports that in a few months the Syrian AF has written off 13 out of 50 supplied.

Mikoyan/Gurevich MiG-27

Above: Russian pilots pose for a propaganda picture in front of their extremely well-equipped MiG-27 ‘Flogger-D’ attack aircraft.

Below: Egyptian ‘Flogger-F’ versions have export designation MiG-23.

Mikoyan/Gurevich MiG-27

Tupolev Tu-28P

Tu-28P "Fiddler";

Tupolev bureau, Tu-102 or Tu-128

Origin: The design bureau of Andrei N. Tupolev, Soviet Union.

Type: Long-range all-weather interceptor.

Engines: Originally, two large axial turbojets of unknown type, each with afterburning rating of about 27,000lb (12,250kg), probably similar to those of Tu-22; later versions, afterburning turbofans of about 30,0001b (13,610 kg) each, as in later Tu-22.

Dimensions: (Estimated) span 65ft (20m): length 85ft (26m): height 23ft (7m).

Weights: (Estimated) empty 55,000lb (25,000kg): maximum loaded 100,0001b (45.000kg).

Performance: (Estimated) maximum speed (with missiles, at height) 1,150mph (1850km/h, Mach 1 75): initial climb, 25,OOOft (7500m)/min: service ceiling (not gross weight) about 60,000ft (18,000m): range-on internal fuel (high Patrol) about 1,800 miles (2900km).

Armament: No guns seen in any version; mix of infra-red homing and radar-homing "Ash” air-to-air guided missiles, originally one of each and since 1965 two of each.

History: First flight, believed 1957; service delivery, probably 1961.

User: Soviet Union (PVO).

Tupolev Tu-28P

Development: Largest fighter known to be in service in the world, this formidable machine is essentially conventional yet has the greatest internal fuel capacity of any fighter and the biggest interception radar known to exist. It was one of a number of supersonic types produced by the Tupolev bureau with technology explored with the family of aircraft of the late 1950s known to NATO as "Backfin" (another is the Tu-22), Like the

Tupolev Tu-28PRight: A flight-line of what are in many respects the largest interceptors in regular combat service. The Tupolev bureau has played every kind of tune on this classic basic design, relatives of which are seen in the Tu-22 ‘Blinder’ and the swing-wing ‘Backfire’ long-range multi-role aircraft. It has been reported that the IA – PVO has a missile­armed interceptor version of the Tu-22 in service as a replace­ment for the Tu-28P.

Three-view of the Tu-28P long-range interceptor, with four "Ash" air-to-air missiles.

others the Tu-28P has a distinctive wing with sharply kinked trailing edge, the outer 45° panels being outboard of large fairings extending behind the trailing edge accommodating the four-wheel bogie landing gears. Two crew sit in tandem under upward-hinged canopies, and all armament is carried on wing pylons. Early versions had twin ventral fins and usually large belly fairings, but these features are absent from aircraft in current service. The Tu-28P would be an ideal strategic patrol fighter to operate in conjunction with the ”Moss" AWACS.

Tupolev Tu-28P

Tupolev Tu-28P

Left: A typical Tu-28P of the IA-PVO, with МАТО code-name of ‘Fiddler’. Usually these very large long-range aircraft carry two IR – homing and two radar­homing versions of the ‘Ash’ air-to-air missile.

Dassault Super Mirage 4000

Type: Multi-role combat aircraft.

Engines: (prototype) two SNECMA M53-5 single-shaft afterburning by-pass turbojets each with maximum thrust of 19,8401b (9000kg). Armament: Not fitted to prototype.

History: Company launch January 1976: first flight 9 March 1979. User: None announced (August 1979).

In January 1976 Marcel Dassault announced that, as a private venture, he was launching the Delta Super Mirage as a long-range multi-role aircraft for export. One hesitates to doubt the credibility of either the man or the com­pany, but to fund such a programme would need many times the net worth of the company, and no consortium of overseas buyers (South Africans? Arabs? Black Africans?) appears to be conceivable. It would not be im­possible for the company to finish the defunct tailed Super Mirage prototype, which was to have flown in July 1976, as an empty shell to show possible customers what the proposed Delta Super Mirage would look like. To develop it as an operational aircraft does not by any stretch of the imagination appear possible. One is left to conclude that M Dassault either expects the French government to find the money, which is extremely unlikely, or he hopes to organise a programme involving a large number of nations pre­pared to share the costs and risks.

Aerodynamically the 4000 closely resembles a scale-up (about *1-25) of the 2000, but with a proportionately larger fin and the important addition of electrically signalled powered canards on the inlets in place of the smaller fighter’s fixed strakes. The radar is the completely new RDM (Radar Doppler Multifonction) Cyrano 500, tested in a Vautour and also intended for export models of Mirage 2000. An l-band track-while-scan set, it is a frequency-agile pulse-Dopplor with several functions unavailable in the RDI (Radar Doppler Impulsions) of the regular 2000.

Dassault Super Mirage 4000
Below: This formation of the Super Mirage 4000 with two prototype Mirage 2000s shows the relative sizes of the two designs, and the slightly different aerodynamics (with controllable foreplanes) of the later twin-engined aircraft.

IAI Kfir

Kfir and Kf ir-C2

Origin: Israel Aircraft Industries, Israel.

Type: Single-seat fighter bomber.

Engine: One 17,900lb (81 20kg) thrust General Electric J79-17 single-shaft turbojet with afterburner.

Dimensions: Span 26ft 11-Jin (822m): length approximately 54ft (16-5m): height 1 3ft 11-jin (4-25m).

Weights: Empty 14,9601b (6785kg): loaded (fighter mission, half internal fuel, two Shafrir) 20,4701b (9305kg): maximum loaded 32,1 20lb (14,600kg). Performance: (Fighter configuration): maximum speed 850mph

(1370km/h, Mach 112) at sea level, 1,550mph (2495km/h, Mach 2-35) at altitude: initial climb 40,000ft (1 2.200m)/min: service ceiling, 55,000ft (16,765m): range on internal fuel 700 miles (1125km).

Armament: Two 30mm DEFA 553 cannon, each with 150 rounds: external weapon load up to 8,500lb (3855kg), normally including one ECM pod and two Shafrir air/air missiles.

History: First flight, prior to 1 974: service delivery, prior to 1 975.

Users: Argentina (Atar-powered Dagger version), Israel.

IAI Kfir

Development: In the 1950s the beleaguered state of Israel looked prin­cipally to France for its combat aircraft and it was mainly with Israeli partner­ship that Dassault was able to develop the original Mirage NIC as a combat type. In the fantastic Six-Day War of 5-10 June 1967 the Israeli Mirage IIICJ starred as the most brilliantly flown combat aircraft of modern times: but Dassault was angrily told by Gen de Gaulle not to deliver the improved Mirage 5 attack aircraft which had been developed for Israel and already paid for. With this history it was a foregone conclusion that Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI) at Lod Airport should be directed to apply their great technical expertise to making Israel more self-sufficient in combat aircraft and, in particular, to devising an improved IAI development of the Mirage which could be built in Israel. By 1 971 there were reports of a Mirage powered by the J79 engine, supposedly named Barak (Lightning), and such aircraft were even said to have participated in quantity in the 1973 Yom Kippur war. On 14 April 1975 the truth (some of it) escaped when tight Israeli security relented briefly at the public unveiling of the Kfir (Lion Cub). Described as one of the cheapest modern combat aircraft, the Kfir is not a remanufactured IIICJ – though the prototypes were – but a new multi-role fighter bomber making a significant advance over previous delta Mirages. The engine is considerably more powerful and necessitated redesign of the fuselage and addition of a ram-cooling inlet ahead of the fin. The shorter engine results in a shorter rear fuselage, but the nose is much lengthened and .equipped with

Подпись: Above: Three-view of IAI Kfir C2.

comprehensive avionics. The entire flight-control and weapon delivery system is by IAI companies and a generation later than that even of the Mirage F1. Though the Kfir did not mature in time to participate in the 1973 war, IAI did clear a number of locally built Atar-powered machines called Neshers which took part in that conflict. The Kfir has continued to develop considerably since entering service in early 1975, and by mid-1976 – when about one-third of the planned force of over 100 were in service — details were released of the Kfir-C2. This incorporates a sharply swept fixed fore­plane above the wing-root leading edge, dogtooth extensions to the outer wings and small fences on each side of the nose. The C2 has improved takeoff and landing and considerably better flight manoeuvrability. All Kfirs are believed to have one autopilot channel with electric "fly by wire" signalling. Production rate is about four per month, and in 1976 IAI an­nounced that it would welcome export orders, at a unit price (without support or spares) of only about $4 5 million. Discussions were then in progress with Austria and certain S. American countries.

Mitsubishi F-l and T-2

F-1 and T-2A

Origin: Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd, Japan.

Type: (T-2A) two-seat supersonic trainer; (F-1) single-seat close-support fighter-bomber.

Engines: Two Ishikawajima-Harima TF40-801A (licence-built Rolls – Royce/Turbomeca Adour 102) two-shaft augmented turbofans with maximum rating of 7,1401b (3238kg): (F-1) may later have more powerful version.

Dimensions: Span 25ft 10in (7-87m); length 58ft 7in (17-86m): height (T-2) 14ft 7in (4 445m), (F-1) 14ft 9in.

Weights: Empty (T-2) 13,6681b (6200kg): (F-1) 14,3301b (6500kg): loaded (T-2, clean) 21,2741b (9650kg): (T-2 maximum) 24,7501b (11,200 kg): (F-1 maximum) 30,200lb (13,700kg).

Performance: Maximum speed (at clean gross weight) 1,056mph (1700km/h, Mach 1-6): initial climb 19,680ft (6000m)/min: service ceiling 50,025ft (15,250m): range (T-2 with external tanks) 1,785 miles (2870km): (F-1 with eight 500lb bombs) 700 miles (1126km).

Armament: One 20mm M-61 multi-barrel gun under left side of cockpit floor: pylon hardpoints under centreline and inboard and outboard on wings, with light stores attachments at tips. Total weapon load (T-2) normally

Mitsubishi F-l and T-2

2,0001b (907kg); (FI) 6,0001b (2722kg) comprising 12,5001b bombs, eight 5001b plus two tanks of 18 3g a I, or two 1,3001b (590kg) ASM-1 anti-ship missiles, and four Sidewinders.

History: First flight (XT-2) 20 July 1971; (T-2A) January 1975; (FST-2) June 1975; service delivery (T-2A) March 1975; (F-1) 1977.

User: Japanese Air Self-Defence Force.

Development: Japan’s first post-war military aircraft was the Fuji T-1 tandem-seat intermediate trainer, looking like an F-86 Sabre and powered by a licence-built Bristol Orpheus.’First flown in 1958, 42 were delivered as the T-1 A, followed by 22 T-1 В with the Japanese J3 engine. To replace the T-1 and other trainers such as the T-33 a design team led by Dr Kenji Ikeda designed the I – 2. Japan’s first supersonic aircraft, using the Anglo – French Jaguar as a basis. After flight trials had shown the validity of the design a single-seat version, the FST-2-Kai, was ordered to replace the F-86 as a close-support fighter. By mid-1 975 orders had been placed for 46 T-2A trainers and the first 4th Air Wing unit had formed at Matsushima Air Base. The T-2A has proved efficient and popular in service, and is incidentally the first properly supersonic aircraft to be designed in Asia. Though a trainer, it carries Mitsubishi Electric radar, with air search, mapping, lock-on and ranging modes, as well as a J/AWG-11 (Thomson-CSF) HUD. Production is at the rate of two per month; by the start of 1 977 orders stood at the planned level of 59, to be completed in 1 980, and deliveries at 37. The first 18 FST-2 fighters (since redesignated F-1) had also been bought, with four flown in 1975. Total F-1 procurement is to be 68, all delivered by the end of 1 979. The F-1 has a Ferranti inertial nav/attack system and Mitsubishi Electric weapon-aiming computer, radar altimeter and radar homing and warning system, most of the added boxes being installed in the bay occupied by the rear cockpit in the T-2A. Production began in 1977, with the letter of intent for a force of 68, all to be delivered by March 1 980. Planned total is 110.

Left: From this angle only an expert could tell that this is not an F-1 but a dual T-2A trainer, 71 of which are to be used at the 4th Air Wing base at Matsushima. Of these, 31 are of the basic T-2 type, while the other 40 are T-2A combat trainers with internal ‘Gatling gun’ and various other changes. A further two aircraft were converted into prototypes of the F-1 single-seat combat aircraft, 36 of which had been delivered by 1980.

Vought A-7 Corsair II

Vought A-7A to К and TA-7C and H

Origin: Vought Systems Division of LTV. Dallas. USA.

Type: Single-seat attack bomber (carrier – or land-based): (ТА) dual trainer.

Engine: (A) one 11,350lb (51 50kg) thrust Pratt & Whitney TF30-6 two – shaft turbofan: (В. C) 12,2001b (5534kg) TF30-8: (D) 14.2501b (6465kg) Allison TF41-1 (Rolls-Royce Spey derivative) of same layout: (E) 15.0001b (6804kg) TF41 -2.

Dimensions: Span 38ft 9in (1T80m): length 46ft 1Jin (14-06m): (ТА) 48ft 2in (14-68m): height 16ft Ofin (4-90m); (ТА) 1 6ft 5in (5m).

Weights: Empty (A) 1 5,904!b (7214kg): (D) 19,781 lb (8972kg): maximum loaded (A) 32,500lb (14,750kg): (D) 42.000lb (19.050kg).

Performance: Maximum speed (all single-seat versions, clean) 698mph (1123km/h) at low level: climb and ceiling, not reported (seldom relevant): tactical radius with weapon load, typically 715 miles (1150km): ferry range with four external tanks, typically 4,100 miles (6600km).

Armament: (A, B) two 20mm Colt Mk 12 in nose: six wing and two fuselage pylons for weapon load of 15,0001b (6804kg). (D, E) one 20mm M61 Vulcan cannon on left side of fuselage with 1,000-round drum: external load up to theoretical 20,000lb (9072kg).

History: First flight 27 September 1965: service delivery October 1966: first flight of D. 26 September 1968.

Users: Greece, Pakistan, USA (Air Force, Navy).

Development: Though derived from the Crusader, the Corsair II is a totally ►

Vought A-7 Corsair II

Vought A-7 Corsair II

Left: An A-7A Corsair II serving during the Vietnam conflict with VA-195 Navy attack squadron embarked aboard USS Kitty Hawk. No longer in service.

Below left: A-7Es of the Carrier Air Group embarked aboard USS America. The A-7E is the most numerous type in Fleet Attack Squadrons.


Vought A-7 Corsair II


Vought A-7 Corsair II
different aircraft. By restricting performance to high subsonic speed, structure weight was reduced, range dramatically increased and weapon load multiplied by about 4. Development was outstandingly quick, as was production. Vought built 1 99 A-7A, used in action in the Gulf of Tonkin on 3 December 1967, followed by 196 В models. The C designation was used for the first 67 E models which retained the TF30 engine. In 1966 the Corsair II was adopted by the US Air Force, the A-7D having the superior TF41 engine, Gatling gun and more complete avionics for blind or automatic weapon delivery under all conditions, with head-up display and inertial/

Vought A-7 Corsair IIVought A-7 Corsair II
Above: A-7E Corsair lls from USS Enterprise (nearest camera) and Coral Sea an older carrier now stripped of her wing and replaced in the Atlantic Fleet by Carl Vinson. Today nearly all the E-models are being equipped with pods under the right wing containing a FUR (forward-looking infra-red) with a new Marconi raster/HUD (head-up display) in the cockpit. This is greatly augmenting their capability to attack at night.

Left: By far the greatest number of A-7 Corsair lls are those in service with the US Air Force, nearly all of them being of the A-7D type (the first to have the TF41 engine). These examples were serving with TAC (Tactical Air Command) but most have now been passed on to the Air National Guard. In 1980 Vought began building the new two-seat A-7K combat – capable trainer for ANG units.

doppler navigation. By late 1976 over 480 had been delivered, with reduced production continuing. The Navy adopted the same model, with an even more powerful TF41. and by late 1976 about 540 E models had been built, bringing output to well over 1,400 within a decade. Vought funded develop­ment of a tandem-seat YA-7H, and is converting 81 В and C into the dual TA-7C. Greece is receiving 60 A-7H, similar to the D but without the on­board starter or flight-refuelling receptacle, at a price of $259-2 million. Pakistan accepted sale of 110. on condition (it was reported) it did not buy a nuclear reactor offered by France!

Dassault Super Etendard

Super Etendard

Origin: Avions Marcel Dassault/Breguet Aviation, France.

Type: Single-seat carrier strike fighter.

Engine: 11,2651b (5110kg) thrust SNECMA Atar 8K-50 single-shaft turbojet.

Dimensions: Span 31ft 5Jin (9-6m); length 46ft 11 Jin (14-31m); height 12ft 8in (3-85m).

Weights: Empty 1 3.889lb (6300kg): loaded 25,350lb (11,500kg). Performance: Maximum speed 745mph (1200km/h) at sea level, Mach 1 at altitude: initial climb 24,600ft (7500m)/min: service ceiling 52,495ft (16,Q00m): range (clean) at altitude, over 1,243 miles (2000km). Armament: Two 30mm DEFA cannon: mission load up to 9,9211b (4500kg) carried on five pylons.

History: First flight (converted Etendard) 28 October 1974: first delivery, late 1 977.

User: France (Aeronavale).

Dassault Super EtendardDevelopment: During the late 1 960s it had been expected that the original force of Etendards would be replaced, in about 1971, by a specially de­veloped version of the Jaguar, the M version with single main wheels, full carrier equipment and specially fitted for the naval strike role. A Jaguar M completed flight development and carrier compatability. but for various reasons, mainly concerned with politics and cost, this was rejected by the Aeronavale and a search began for an alternative. After studying the A-4 Skyhawk and A-7 Corsair, the Aeronavale chose Dassaub Breguet’s proposal for an improved Etendard. This has a substantially redesigned structure, for operation at higher indicated airspeeds and higher weights: a nevv and more efficient engine, obtained by removing the afterburner from the Atar 9K-50 of the Mirage F1 ,C: completely new inertial navigation

Dassault Super Etendard

Three-view of the Super Etendard (centreline pylon not shown).

system, produced mainly by SAGEM with American help; new multi-mode nose radar, produced jointly by Thomson-CSF and Electronique Marcel Dassault, with especially good performance in surface vessel detection and attack; and much greater and more varied mission load. Flight development was completed in 1974-77 with three converted Etendard IVs, the first testing the engine, the second the avionics and weapons, and the third the new wing with slats and double-slotted flaps like the Jaguar. In 1973 the Aeronavale announced it would buy 100, but this has now been cut back to 30, and service delivery delayed until late 1978.

Below; Unlike Britain, which has no conventional aircraft carriers, the French Navy has no plans to withdraw either Foch or Clemenceau from operational commission. Here a Dassault Super Etendard (No 7) is seen aboard the former vessel, though the first dozen aircraft to be delivered went to the land airfield of Landivisiau, where they replaced the obsolescent Etendard IVM. Super Etendards are also replacing Crusader F-8(FN) fighters.

Dassault Super Etendard

Nesher (Eagle)

Nesher (Eagle)
When General De Gaulle instructed Dassault not to deliver the Mirage 5 aircraft ordered and paid for by Israel, and developed by Dassault specifically for the Israeli Air Force, IAI was assigned the task of making Israel in­dependent of French help. The ultimate result was the Kfir (see above ),but as an interim measure IAI produced a copy of the Mirage 5 with Atar 9C engine. The prototype is reported to have flown in October 1969. Deliveries began in 1972, and about 40 Neshers are said to have participated in the October 1973 war.