F-16 Fighting Falcon News

Greece placing order for weapons and work on F-16

December 22, 2006 (by Lieven Dewitte) - Lockheed Martin has been awarded a $931.3 million contract modification for work on 20 F-16C block 50 aircraft and 10 F-16D block 52 aircraft under the Peace Xenia IV program. This contract is additive to a February 2006 contract for $99.7 million.

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Front view of HAF F-16D block 52 #617 parked on the tarmac with opened canopy and ladders ready. [Photo by Tokunaga]

The initial contract was awarded for the "long lead" requirements only, the notice said. Such items typically include raw materials and tooling.

The latest Pentagon action represents "basically another payment to continue long lead tasks toward production of these airplanes," said Joe Stout, a Lockheed spokesman.

Greece is to take delivery of the new aircraft in 2009. They will supplement the existing Greek Air Force F-16 fleet. Under the government-to-government deal announced last December, Greece had an option for another 10 F-16s, which it turned down on March 15th, 2006.

On December 08, 2006, the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) notified Congress of a possible Foreign Military Sale to Greece of F-16C/D munitions, as well as associated equipment and services. The total value, if all options are exercised, could be as high as $104 million. Items requested include:
  • 40 AGM-154-C Joint Standoff Weapons (JSOW). The JSOW-C precision glide bomb incorporates an imaging infrared seeker for high precision, and adds a Broach multi-stage warhead that has both hard target penetration and blast-fragmentation capability. The JSOW glide-bomb is also popular with Greece's rival Turkey;
  • 100 GBU-31 Joint Direct Attack Munitions (JDAM) GPS/INS guidance Kits;
  • 200 CBU-103 Wind Corrected Munitions Dispenser (WCMD) with FZU-39 Proximity Mechanisms - these are similar to JDAM, but are cluster bombs. The CBU-103 variant is a 1,000 pound bomb with anti-personnel munitions inside. See DID article;
  • 100 Enhanced Paveway II with BLU-109. The BLU-109/B is an improved 2,000-pound-class bomb designed as a penetrator for hardened targets like bunkers. Enhanced Paveway kits add GPS as well as laser guidance to bombs.
  • 136 Enhanced Paveway II with MK-84 Warheads. Mk-84 warheads are conventional 2,000 pound bombs.

Also included are JSOW training missiles, BRU-57/A Smart Rack Launchers, containers, system integration and testing, sensors, missile modifications, fuzes, software development/integration, test sets and support equipment, spare and repair parts, publications and technical data, maintenance, personnel training and training equipment, U.S. Government and contractor representatives, contractor engineering and technical support services, and other related elements of logistics support.

The principal contractors will be:
  • Boeing Integrated Defense Systems in Arlington, Virginia (JDAM)
  • Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control in Orlando, Florida (JSOW, WCMD)
  • Raytheon Missile Systems in Tucson, Arizona (Enhanced Paveway)

Peace Xenia IV

Since the cancellation of the billion Eurofighter Typhoon deal, rumours existed whether the Greek government would buy more F-16s instead. In July of 2005 a first glimpse of a new fighter deal was noted. Ultimately, on December 13th, 2005 the Greek government signed a LOA for the delivery of 30 new block 52 F-16s with an option on 10 more. The first batch consists of 20 C-models and 10 D-models.




Additional images:

A HAF F-16D block 52 is going ballistic over the Aegean Sea. [Photo by Tokunaga]

Acrobatic manouvres of HAF F-16D block 52 #602 during a photo shoot above the Adriatic. [Photo by Tokunaga]