F-16 AIM-7 Capability

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viper187

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Unread post31 Mar 2021, 05:43

From what I've gathered, the US only had AIM-7 capability for the F-16A ADF. Did USAF F-16Cs ever receive this capability too and which export F-16 users besides Iraq, Egypt, Bahrain, Taiwan and Singapore also received AIM-7s for use on their F-16s before the introduction of the AIM-120?
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basher54321

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Unread post31 Mar 2021, 09:01

Apparently some USAF F-16Cs could because someone told me they used to train fitting the pylons and missiles and they were fully capable. This was 2002 period but no details on if this was a universal thing - I get the impression they just spent their lives in crates.

Best I know is that according to Lockheed the first F-16CD AIM-7 capability didn't happen until 1992 which can only guess at Egypt/Bahrain maybe. However USAF went FOC with AMRAAM on F-16s mid 1992 so currently it doesn't look like anyone had AIM-7 much before AMRAAM outside of the F-16A ADF.
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Boman

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Unread post31 Mar 2021, 09:36

To add to what's already said;
The F-16C could carry the AIM-7 just as much as the AIM-120, however the AIM-120 came on the scene and replaced it effectively. Although never used on USAF F-16C/D's the capability was there. By simply fitting the AIM-7 pylon to station 3/7 will allow any F-16C/D to fire it.
As the AIM-120 was coming onboard, the AIM-7's were seen to be a scale down that could be used on F-16's sold to ie Egypt, Pakistan, Iraq etc. whom were not elligeble to get the AIM-120.
The ANG used a AIM7/9/120 combo on their ADF versions until the ADF was retired in 2007, although the last years were mainly AIM9/120 combos.

For sake of interest, there is a photo of a 119FW 178FS F-16A/ADF firing an AIM-120 from a AIM-7 pylon on station 7 in the ANG gallery.
Last edited by Boman on 31 Mar 2021, 19:41, edited 1 time in total.
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magnum4469

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Unread post31 Mar 2021, 18:41

Boman wrote:The ANG used a AIM7/9/120 combo on their ADF versions until the ADF was retired between 92-96.

The Happy Hooligans, 119FW 178FS flew the F-16ADF until 2007...
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Boman

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Unread post31 Mar 2021, 19:40

Ah, your correct, sorry - I'll correct :)
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LinkF16SimDude

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Unread post31 Mar 2021, 22:44

Boman wrote:By simply fitting the AIM-7 pylon to station 3/7 will allow any F-16C/D to fire it.
I'm not so sure it's that simple. You can mount the hardware but there has to be SMS support for the missile also and I don't remember ever seeing that in any of the C-model sims I worked on (which ran an actual aircraft SMS package). There were also gadgets mounted to the ADF jets to tune the missile(s) to a particular guidance channel in the FCR. I checked Jake Melampy's Viper books and couldn't find these horns on the C-models. So if C-models could fire Sparrows, how was this tuning done?
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basher54321

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Unread post31 Mar 2021, 22:56

LinkF16SimDude wrote:There were also gadgets mounted to the ADF jets to tune the missile(s) to a particular guidance channel in the FCR. I checked Jake Melampy's Viper books and couldn't find these horns on the C-models. So if C-models could fire Sparrows, how was this tuning done?[/size]


Assume you are talking about a CW horn added to the antenna of the APG-66 that the ADF used. The ADF could only guide AIM-7 via CW AFAIK.

The APG-68 on the other hand didn't need to use CW guidance, it used a Pulse Doppler waveform native to the radar via the Dual Mode Transmitter.

The certification on the C was done in 1989 - no idea why it took another 3 years to get it ready.

From Code One ( with photo of A model 8) )
First Sparrow Shot from F-16C_Oct89.JPG
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LinkF16SimDude

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Unread post31 Mar 2021, 23:03

basher54321 wrote:Assume you are talking about a CW horn added to the antenna of the APG-66 that the ADF used. The ADF could only guide AIM-7 via CW AFAIK.
I get that it needed CWI after launch. But prior to that the missile needed tuning to the guidance channel to be used (There were 4 selectable via the SCP AIM7 page IIRC) and I thought those tuning horns were mounted on the aft fuselage. I'll go recheck Jake's books again.
Last edited by LinkF16SimDude on 31 Mar 2021, 23:14, edited 1 time in total.
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basher54321

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Unread post31 Mar 2021, 23:10

Typically it is on the front like on the F-15 for example if we are talking about the same thing because you generally want to fire the CW out the front.

If you have the Early Viper Guide that is a Block 10 radar - not sure if I have any photos of the ADFs radar - will check
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basher54321

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Unread post31 Mar 2021, 23:29

We are talking about different things then and you are right if the manual is anything to go by that the AIM-7 had to be tuned on the ADF.
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phantomfixer

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Unread post01 Apr 2021, 00:40

Having worked both F-4 and F-16 RADAR I never saw the option or capability to launch an AIM-7 off of a F-16C model. F-4's had signal horns at the front and rear of each missile station. The missile would get pre-launch guidance in the form of Pseudo signal and post launch would receive a simulated doppler signal and rear signal, as well as CW illumination from the RADAR antenna. In the mid 80's the pseudo signal was deleted and the missile would receive the sim dop signal pre-launch. I will have to scrounge around and see if I can locate one of my old cards for SMS stores codes from my block 30 days.
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F-16ADF

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Unread post01 Apr 2021, 16:52

Front end of a F-16ADF from summer 1992.
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APG-66 from ADF.jpg
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LinkF16SimDude

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Unread post01 Apr 2021, 19:34

Well this is the tuning gadget I was trying to describe but not very accurately. The pic is taken from the A/B Dash 1 page 1-181. I couldn't find a free USAF C/D Dash 1 online to compare it to but I'd guess these things aren't on the C/D jets or if they were it was only for testing (see Basher's post above) and never deployed to the C/D fleet because of the AIM-120 phase-in. I also didn't see any in Jake Melampy's C/D Viper guide. I suppose it would be entirely possible that if AIM-7 was included in any C/D FMS deal that they could be added if the design called for it.
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sparrow tuning antenna.jpg
AIM-7 tuning antenna location.
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edpop

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Unread post01 Apr 2021, 22:54

Vietnam veteran (70th Combat Engineer Battalion)(AnKhe & Pleiku) 1967
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basher54321

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Unread post01 Apr 2021, 23:09

LinkF16SimDude wrote:Well this is the tuning gadget I was trying to describe but not very accurately. The pic is taken from the A/B Dash 1 page 1-181.


Here is the starboard side of an ADF (Italy) although these may have had a few mods. Are you referring to the tiny panel to the left of the blue picture?

F-16A_ADF_Italy4.jpg
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