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Pakistan receives first MLU F-16s

February 6, 2012 (by Asif Shamim) - The Pakistani airforce received its first two MLU upgraded F-16s today at PAF Shahbaz airbase after the aircraft arrived back from the USA.

PAF F-16B block 15 #82603 is touching down on the runway at Lajes AFB on its way from Pakistan to the US for its MLU conversion. [Photo by Fabio Rocha]

Accompanying the two upgraded F-16s was the final block 52 airframe a D-Model (#10801) which had remained in the US for testing & trials. This concludes the delivery of all 18 of the newer Block 52 aircraft ordered as part of the 'Peace Drive' program.

According to PAF public affairs officials the two F-16 block 15 aircraft, were earlier sent to USA for Mid Life Upgrade (MLU) and have been delivered back to the PAF on time. On there return a small ceremony was held at the base attended by PAF dignitaries.

The United States has released $ 116 million to finance mid-life upgrades for Pakistan's existing fleet of block 15 A/B aircraft.

Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) will do the upgrade MLU which primarily involves replacement of avionics and structural modifications bringing them close to block 40 standards.