Monthly Archives: October 2015

Stryker 8×8 vehicles Kongsberg’s MCT30 Remote Turret


The U.S. Senate has approved a $371 million U.S. Army budget for General Dynamics‘ Stryker armored vehicle. General Dynamics will equip the Stryker 8×8 armoured vehicles with a Medium Caliber Remote Weapons Station. At AUSA 2014, Konsgberg from Norway has presented a project of Stryker vehicle fitted with its Protector turret MCT30. Stryker 8×8 armoured vehicle fitted with Konsberg MCT30 remote weapon station at AUSA 2014, defense exhibition in Washington D.C.

Remote Turret Stryker MCT30 2

The PROTECTOR MCT30 provides highly accurate firepower for wheeled and tracked combat/armored vehicles. The system is remotely controlled and operated from a protected position inside the vehicle compartment. The main armament is a 30mm automatic cannon equipped with a link less ammunition handling system for increased reliability compared to traditional link fed cannon systems.

Remote Turret Stryker MCT30Remote Tur

The system is remotely controlled and operated from a protected position inside the vehicle compartment. 

XM813 rapid-fire 30mm autocannon

XM813 Linkless

Linkless Ammunition Feed System with Two 75 Round Ammo Boxes on Each Side of 30mm Cannon


Traditional link fed cannon systems

The Konsberg Protector RWS (Remote Weapon Station) on the LAV Demonstrator was armed with an ATK Mk44 30mm automatic cannon and a co-axial 7.62mm machine gun located to the top and left side of the main gun.


The turret is remotely operated under armor to increase the protection for the gunner. It is equipped with a dual ammunition feed with 75 rounds each and can carry a total of 150 rounds ready to fire.

AmmoBox inside hull

The ammunition boxes for the main gun and the coax gun that were generally in the basket for the two-men turret have to be relocated to the turret hull. The former 2 men turret hull did not include these, so it usually means you have to increase the turret hull size to accommodate the ammo boxes. These ammo boxes takes up considerable volume inside the turret hull for a remote turret.

The medium caliber automatic cannon and coaxial machine gun combined with optional non-lethal effects provides the vehicle crew the necessary tools to engage in a wide spectrum of situations and to conduct Escalation of Force. The availability of having two ammunition types simultaneously gives the flexibility to configure the system to engage both soft and hard targets beyond 3,000 meters.


A Commander’s sight solution, based on the PROTECTOR RWS family, gives the commander an independent surveillance and lethal/non-lethal engagement capability and enables a two way hunter/killer capability.

U.S. Army Spc. Ruben Casiano Jr., from Alpha Company, 1st Battalion, 5th Infantry Regiment, uses the Stryker Infantry Carrier Vehicle's remote weapon system to scan the area for enemy contact during Talisman Sabre 2007 in Shoalwater Bay, Australia, June 20, 2007. The biennial exercise is designed to train Australian and U.S. forces in planning and conducting combined task force operations, which will help improve combat readiness and interoperability. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Sandra M. Palumbo) (Released)stryker_interior_by_detroitdemigod-d3ec03x

Source: War Fare Tech,  Wheeled Armoured Vehicles Part Deux

Hongdu L-15 Supersonic Trainer / Attack Aircraft, China

Hongdu L-15 is a twin engine, modern jet trainer or light attack aircraft designed and manufactured by Hongdu Aviation Industry Group (HAIG) of China. It has been built as a rival to Guizhou JL-9/FTC-2000 Mountain Eagle. The L-15 will be used as a lead-in fighter trainer (LIFT) by the People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) and the People’s Liberation Army Naval Air Force (PLANAF). About five prototypes have been built by HAIG.

rdn_51d227c0c9291July 1, 2013 at 13:04 pm, a yellow factory painting coaches -10 “Falcon” senior trainer, in a central airplane in central China flew to the blue sky, the scene guests have applauded. According to sources, the coach-10 “Falcon” advanced trainer conducted the first test flight, it is learned that the aircraft will soon be delivered to the PLA Air Force, allegedly, our air force and naval aviation forces equipped with L-15 aircraft has been “Coach -10” official number, in the June 29 to complete the delivery of the first overseas users after the ceremony, “Coach -10” delivery ceremony has also been a complete success. (Globe picture) -Image:

A Hongdu brochure obtained at the 2015 Paris Airshow indicated that a lead-in fighter trainer (LIFT) version was also being developed. The LIFT version was said to have “afterburning engines, high-performance fire control radar, and weapons-carrying capacity for combat missions.”

Images appeared on Chinese websites in October 2015 showing an L-15 carrying a small radar, possibly a passive electronically scanned array (PESA) with a reported range of about 75 km: a development that would greatly improve the aircraft’s air-to-air combat capability.

Adding to the confusion, a model of an armed L-15 described as the attack/fighter/trainer (AFT) version was displayed during the Singapore Airshow in February.

An L-15 was not seen flying with weapons until the Hongdu anniversary video appeared on Chinese websites in early May. The aircraft was seen taking off with PL-5II air-to-air missiles, a centre-fuselage pod carrying a 23 mm cannon and underwing fuel tanks.

It also carried two Luoyang Electro Optical Technology Development Center LS-6 extended-range guided bombs. Introduced in 2006, the LS-6 has fold-out wings that give it a range of up to 60 km.

The L-15 in the video appeared to have non-afterburning turbofans, most likely the Lotarev DV-2s or the non-afterburning Progress AI-222-25 used in the L-15 prototypes. The production version of the L-15 is expected to use the 5 tonne-thrust Minshan afterburning engine that is currently being developed by the Guizhou Aero Engine Research Institute. Source

Hongdu L-15 trainer aircraft orders


PLAAF ordered four Hongdu L-15 trainer aircraft in April 2006. Pakistan Air Force (PAF) is planning to procure Hongdu L-15 supersonic jet trainers from HAIG to replace its existing K-8 Karakorum jet trainer. The procurement will allow PAF to reduce its trainer aircraft from four to two.

It was rumored in September 2013 that JL-10 might be adopted by PLAN as a carrier-based trainer but this has not been confirmed. Several foreign countries have expressed serious interest in acquiring L-15. It was reported that 6 L-15Z upgraded AFT version (Attack/Fighter/Trainer) were ordered by Zambia in 2012. 

These L-15Zs could carry PL-5II AAMs, LS-6 GPS/INS bombs, a belly 23mm gun pod and be used as a light attack aircraft. As a result a small fire-control (PESA? max range 60nm/111km) radarmay have been installed. It was reported in June 2014 that Venezuela expressed the intention to acquire 24 L-15s. Uruguay also showed some interest in August 2016.  Source

K-8 Karakorum: Details

Zambian L-15 debuts

yourfileImage: Abri Kriegler – Source

The first Chinese-made Hongdu L-15 supersonic light attack/jet trainer for Zambia has broken cover at Africa Aerospace and Defence in the markings of the air force’s 15 Sqn.

According to Flight Fleets Analyzer, Lusaka has ordered six of the Motor Sich AI-222-25-powered aircraft and the first example – AF-001 – arrived in Zambia “earlier this year”, says 15 Sqn’s Maj Paul Besa, who has been flying the type since 2015, initially in China, with “no problems”.

The L-15 was displayed with an array of Chinese weaponry, including a PL-5E II air-to-air missile and LS-6 guided glide bomb. 15 SEPTEMBER, 2016 SOURCE: FLIGHT INTERNATIONAL BY: MURDO MORRISON – Source

Uruguayan Air Force eyeing China’s Hongdu L-15: Here

Hongdu L-15 design


HAIG unveiled the L-15 aircraft design in September 2001 during the 9th Aviation exhibition in Beijing. The large leading edge extensions (LEX) design allows the aircraft to offer a maximum angle of attack of 30°. The aircraft can also be changed into light air-to-ground attack aircraft with minor modifications.

The aircraft has been designed to train pilots of the third-generation fighters encompassing Su-27, Su-30, J-10, and J-11. The enhanced design provides safety to the pilot while cutting down the training cost compared to its rivals.


Two variants are being developed initially. One is advanced jet trainer (AJT), powered by two Ukraine AI-222-25 turbofan engines. The other is lead-in fighter trainer (LIFT), powered by two AI-222-25F with afterburner which give L-15 a supersonic capability. Source

HAIG L-15 development

The development of Hongdu L-15 began when Hongdu planned a modern trainer aircraft which would meet the requirements of PLAAF’s new generation fighters. Russian based Yakovlev Design Bureau aided in the L-15 manufacturing as its design resembles that of the Yak-130 aircraft.

Yak-130: Detailss (4)_olnc

The initial prototype was rolled out in September 2005 and took its maiden flight in March 2006. The second prototype completed its first flight in May 2008. The first and second prototypes are powered by two ZMKB-Progress (Lotarev) DV-2 engines. An improved version, the DV-2F, which boasts of afterburner capabilities, was fitted in the third model. Ukraine’s Ivchenko-Progress AI-222K-25F turbofan engines with afterburner are incorporated in the later L-15 versions.

The Hongdu L-15 was displayed at the Dubai Air show organised in November 2009 to promote its aircraft in the potential Middle East market. HAIG will receive export orders from Africa, the Middle East and South America.

The first operational variant powered by Ivchenko-Progress AI-222K-25F turbofan engines was introduced in August 2010 upon completion of six months production.

06 LIFT prototype stretched nose housing a small PESA radar 

l-15_0606 LIFT prototype – Image:

The 06 LIFT prototype finally took off on October 26, 2010. It features a stretched nose housing a small PESA radar developed by the 607 Institute (range ~75km), an improved glass cockpit with three MFDs, and two AI-222K-25F turbofans capable of supersonic flight.  Source

29yqo9106 LIFT prototype – Image:

Hongdu L-15 cockpit


The Hongdu L-15 features a full glass cockpit which can accommodate two crew members, either a student pilot and instructor, or an official pilot and weapons systems officer. A multi-colour head down display is fitted on both front and rear cockpit, while the head up display is installed at the cockpit front. Digital fly by wire (FBW), and hands-on throttle and stick (HOTAS) flight control systems are also installed in the aircraft.




The Hongdu L-15 comprises six hard points of which four are located under the two wings and two under the wing-tips. It can accommodate 3,000kg of payload. The aircraft can carry short range air-to-air missiles, air-to-ground missiles, bombs and rocket pods.

PL-5 (霹雳-5) air-to-air missile


The PL-5 (霹雳-5) air-to-air missile (PL stands for Pi Li, “Thunderbolt” in Chinese, the generic designation for all PRC air-to-air missiles) is a short-range, Infrared homing missile use by Chinese fighters. It is based on AA-2 Atoll technology and resembles the AIM-9 Sidewinder.  The PL-5 have been continuously upgraded by Luoyang and the latest variant, the PL-5EII added a dual band, multi-element detector as well as a laser proximity fuse similar to the PL-9. According to Chinese export/import agency CATIC, the PL5E has an all-aspect capability with the seeker having a maximum off boresight angle of ±25° before launch, and ±40° after launch.

LS-6 GPS/INS bombs


The LS-6 designation is applied to a family of guidance kits for a range of low drag bomb bodies. Known variants of the tailkit are for 500 kg, 250 kg, 100 kg and 50 kg bombs. The former variants are glidebombs, the latter variants strake equipped analogues to the US GBU-39/B Small Diameter Bomb (SDB).

The 500 kg / 250 kg LS-6 glidebomb design is modelled in many respects on the concept of the Australian developed planar wing Kerkanya glidebomb kit, more recently adapted to form the JDAM-ER. Unlike the Kerkanya which uses a low wing monoplane configuration with a blended adaptor fairing, the LS-6 glide wing kit is much simpler in design and the weapon flight configuration is  that of a high wing monoplane. Cited range for an 11 km release altitude at 900 km/h is 60 km, considerably less than the Kerkanya/JDAM-ER design4.


Luoyang Description for 500/250 kg Variants (Cite):

LS-6 guided glide bomb is a low-cost but highly effective air to surface weapon for standoff precise attack on fixed ground targets, such as airports, seaports, bridges, commander centers, etc. With a wing kit and GPS/INS guidance unit, the conventional low-drag aerial bombs are modified into precision guided bombs with standoff attack ability.     

System features:

Launched outside mid/short range air defense firepower

All-weather, day & night attack capability

Low cost but highly effective

Fire and forget capability

Excellent anti-interference capability

Modular guidance and control unit

Single target or multiple targets attack capability

Weapon delivery:

The LS-6 standoff guided glide bomb (SOGGB) utilizes high-altitude and high-speed launching, high lift-drag ratio aerodynamic configuration and suitable control scheme to ensure a remote gliding control. Before the bomb is dropped, its on-board INS coordinate system must be aligned with that of the aircraft and the fire control system downloads the mission planning into the bomb. Within a specified period of time after the bomb being dropped, the stabilizing system of the bomb starts to work to ensure the bomb and the aircraft being separated safely. And then, the folded-wings expand, putting the bomb into the autonomous flight course, and the on-board control system of the bomb starts to operate to keep the bomb body stable. A combined GPS/INS navigation is adopted during this course. The guidance system translates and calculates the guidance commands and outputs to the autopilot to ensure the bomb flying in a planned trajectory. Based on the relative position of the bomb to the target, the bomb will enter its terminal guidance at a preset distance from the target. On the terminal course of the trajectory, attitude control will be performed via a vertical lead-bias to improve the kill effect.

Technical data:

  1. a) Kill Area:

   For normal target:5,000 – 10,000 m2

   For armored targe:100 – 500 m2

  1. b) Operational Altitude and Speed:

   Launch altitude:4,000 – 11,000 m

   Launch speed:600 – 1,000 km/h

  1. c) Maximum Launch Range:No less than 60 kilometers with a launch altitude of 11,000 meters and an initial speed of 900 km/h.
  2. d) Guidance Mode:Combined GPS/INS guidance.
  3. e) Guidance Accuracy: ≤15 meters CEP


Ivchenko Progress AI-222K-25F Engines

The aircraft is powered by two Ivchenko Progress AI-222K-25F afterburning turbofan engines. Each engine can generate 4,200kg of thrust afterburner.

The aircraft is also integrated with full authority digital engine control (FADEC), which decreases the work load of the pilot by executing autopilot operations.

The length and width of the engine are 2.2m and 0.86m respectively.

The height is 1.09m. The service life of the engine is 3000 flight hours, while the dry weight is 440kg.

AI-222K-25F Engines


Full afterburner thrust rating (SLS, ISA, уinl=1,0 ):  
thrust, kgf (flat rated to ISA+15°C), not less 4200
SFC, kg/kgf•h, not more 1.9
(H=11000 m; Mfl=1.4; ISA; уinl=0,97 ):  
thrust, kgf 2760
Max thrust rating (SLS, ISA, уinl=1,0 ):  
thrust, kgf 2500
SFC, kg/kgf•h, not more 0.66
air flow rate, kg/s 49.7
pressure ratio 15.43
by-pass ratio 1.18
maximum TIT, K 1471
Dimensions and weight  
Fan diameter, mm 624
Length, mm 3138*
Weight, dry (to State Standard 17106-90), kg, not more 560

* length from front flange to nozzle throat.

AI−222−25 Turbofan data

The Hongdu L-15 can climb at the rate of 150m/s. Its maximum speed is 1,715km/h. The range and combat radius of the aircraft are 3,100km and 550km respectively. The service ceiling of the aircraft is 16,000m. Its maximum loitering time is two hours. The aircraft weighs around 4,960kg and its maximum take-off weight is 9,500kg.

Technical data

Entered service 2013
Crew 2 men
Dimensions and weight
Length 12.27 m
Wing span 9.48 m
Height 4.81 m
Weight (empty) ?
Weight (maximum take off) 9.5 t
Engines and performance
Engines 2 x AL-222K-25F
Traction (dry / with afterburning) ?
Maximum speed 1.4 Mach
Service ceiling 16 km
Ferry range 3 100 km
Combat radius over 550 km
Cannon ?
Missiles ?
Bombs ?

Technical data

Main material source

Revised Feb 18, 2017

CAMEL Helps Designers Make Vehicles ‘Safe for Combat’


The US Army presented today a new concept vehicle designed to explore how to design current and future combat vehicles to better protect the warfighters riding in those vehicles to combat. The Concept for Advanced Military Explosion-Mitigation Land (CAMEL) vehicle designed by the Tank Automotive Research, Development & Engineering Center (TARDEC), demonstrates the ‘Occupant Centric Platform’ (OCP) concepts developed at the center. A 30-ton 8×8-class troop carrier, CAMEL is designed to safely and securely transport nine troops and two crew-members safely and securely. The goal is to reduce combat vehicle casualties well below 50 percent, compared to current combat vehicles.


This CAMEL demonstrator is ergonomically designed around the Soldiers and their gear, incorporating cutting edge technologies to increase comfort and efficiency while improving soldier safety, by diverting blast energy away from its occupants. TARDEC recently evaluated the vehicle with fully equipped active-duty troops, to gather feedback from soldiers who would use such vehicles in the future. The demonstrator is undergoing tests, including live fire, that are designed to evaluate its safety, comfort and blast resistance.


“This is a new concept in that we are designing the vehicle around the soldier,” said Steve Knott, the Associate Director of Ground Systems Survivability at TARDEC. “There are a lot of vehicles that, when you get in the back, it is tight. There are protrusions that could cause injury and loose gear that can be harmful in certain situations. These OCP demonstrators are designed around the occupant and offer a new level of survivability for our warfighters”.

The OCP Technology Enabled Capability Demonstrator (TECD) program aims to reduce casualties on legacy platforms by as much as 50 percent, using OCP concepts. The ultimate goal is to eliminate crew injuries for any occupant position.


Blast protection is the basic consideration for the design of the hull, seating and ergonomics. Two primary factors contribute to the dissipation of blast effect caused by an underbelly explosion – the distance (height) from the source and the shape of the hull. An OCP-designed vehicle uses a U-shaped hull, with a deflector shield that channels shock waves away from the vehicle’s hull and interiors.


An look into the troop compartment shows the padded ceiling, canted corners, blast isolated ‘floating floor’ and individual seating, with head and foot rests, stowage for the personal gear and ‘virtual windows’ – vision blocks displaying a video image taken from 360 degree cameras located all around the vehicle.


OCP-designed vehicles are equipped with individual seating, fitted with harness straps and foot rests – their role is to isolate the passenger from the blast affecting the hull, while maintaining comfortable and ergonomic design. Seat angles are designed and shaped to prevent spinal injuries, and the ceiling contains impact-absorbing materials to reduce the chance of head injury. The hull is designed with protective trim on the top and sides, also reducing the danger of injury. 360-degree views with cameras capturing the surroundings outside the vehicle and beaming the video onto internal screens provide situational awareness inside, without exposing the crew to hostile fire.


The fighting compartment can be reconfigured to provide space for stretchers, carrying injured squad members. The litters are designed specifically for the vehicle and hang from straps attached to hooks on ceiling-mounted anchor tracks to isolate the wounded from the floor (preventing further injury from blast).


Source: Thread: Wheeled Armoured Vehicles Part Deux

Mi-24 Hind (Mi-35 Export Version)

The Mi-24 (NATO designation Hind) is one of the most widely-known assault helicopter gunships in the world, and remains in service with at least 50 air arms. tumblr_nm3u9hRXbU1r94kvzo8_1280

The Mi-24 was developed from the tried and tested Mi-8 multirole transport helicopter and was first flown in V-24 prototype form in 1969. Production commenced in 1971 and ceased in 1991. Over 2,300 Hinds of all variants were produced.


The definitive initial production variant was the Mi-24D Hind-D (Mi-25 for export). This introduced heavily-armored, stepped cockpits ant an undernose gun turret. Vital components of the helicopter are also armored. This gunship has a crew of three and can carry up to 8 fully-equipped troops.

Russia to start fitting Mi-24 gunships with Vitebsk electronic warfare system: HERE

mi-24-mi-24-hind-931162-1920x1080OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

From 1976 to 1978, the Hind-D was joined in service by the up-engined Mi-24V Hind-E (export Mi-35), which also featured improved armament of tube-launched 9M114 Shturm (AT-6 Spiral) ATGMs.

Mi-35M (Hind E): HereAIR_Mi-35M_Pirana_Venezuela_Parked_lg

9K114 Shturm


The 9K114 Shturm is an anti-tank missile system of Soviet origin. It was developed in the early 1970’s and is employed since 1976. The system is called 9K114 Shturm and is missile is known as the 9M114 Kokon. In the West the NATO reporting name AT-6 Spiral is used often. The 9M114 was designed to provide attack helicopters with a more capable anti-tank missile than the Falanga (AT-2). Besides helicopters it is also used on vehicles and ships.


The 9M114 has a better performance than the older Falanga (AT-2) and Malyutka (AT-3) in range, penetration and accuracy. During Western tests accuracy proved poor while Russian sources claim 75 to 85 percent effectiveness in the Afghan war. The original 9M114 missiles penetrates about 560mm RHA and has a maximum range of 5 km. The 9M114M2 extends this range to 7 km and penetrates 600 to 650 mm RHA. A thermobaric version is available.


Type Anti-tank missile
Diameter 0.130 m body, 0.36 m wingspan
Length 1.625 m
Weight 31.4 kg
Guidance Radio command guidance
Warhead 5.3 kg HEAT warhead, penetration 560 – 600 mm RHA
Propulsion Solid propellant rocket motor
Speed 345 m/s
Range 400 m minimum, 5 km maximum


1287145867_mi2405_conv.jpg9M114 Shturm (AT-6 Spiral) ATGMs.

Combat experience in Afghanistan led to the development of the Mi-24P Hind-F with a 30-mm GSh-30K twinbarrel cannon mounted on the forward fuselage. Later specialised Hind variants include the Mi-24RKR Hind-G1 NBC reconnaissance helicopter; Mi-24K Hind-G2 for artillery fire correction; Mi-24BMT minesweeper conversion and Mi-24PS for paramilitary use.

30-mm GSh-30K twinbarrel cannon


It is designed for firing with fragmentation-mine, armour-piercing-explosive and armour-piercing-tracer shells from different types of aircrafts and helicopters at air and ground targets. Operation of automated mechanism is based on use of powder gases energy.

The gun can be used on right or left feed.

The gun is produced in two modifications: GSH-30 — with length of barrels of 1500 mm installed on aircrafts “Su-25” type; GSH-30K — with length of barrels of 2400 mm, evaporative cooling system of barrels and variable rate of fire. The gun is installed on helicopters of “Mi-24P” type.

Technical Characteristics
Calibre, mm 30
Fixed resource, shot 4000
Fire control electric 27V
Mass, kg 105 (126)
Overall dimensions, mm, not more than
2944 (2044)


dsc_436430-mm GSh-30K twinbarrel cannon

At the beggining of the 21 century Mi-24s remains in widespread service, the Russian army being the most significant operator with around 700 helicopters. Other major users include Algeria, Angola, Belarus, Czech Republic, Hungary, India, Kazakhstan, Libya and Poland. The Mi-24 has seen widespread combat action, fighting in Afghanistan, Chad, Angola, Sri Lanka and, most recently, in the wars in Chechnya in 1995 and 1999. The market for upgrades is substantial, with an estimated 1 500 Hinds remaining in service. A number of programmes are available.

full-hd-the-mi-24-helicopter-cool-wallpapers-for-android-1024x681Cockpit of Venezuelan Mi-35 Gunship Helicopter Mi-24P (Mi-25 and Mi-35) Hind Attack Transport Helicopter (8)Upgraded Cockpit Venezuelan Mi-35IMG_9224-2Pilot SeatLl7IHbRGunner seat

The Mi-24VM (export designation Mi-35M) is available from Mil as a staged upgrade that includes a refurbished airframe for prolonged service, Mi-28 dynamic systems, upgraded 2,194-shp (1 636-kW) TV3-117VMA engines, and MFD-equipped cockpit compatible with night vision googles, pilot’s head-up display, forward-looking infra-red, a nose turret carrying a GSh-231 23-mm two-barrel cannon, 9M120 (AT-12 Swinger) ATGMs, and compatibility with 9M39 Igla (SA-18 Grouse) air-to-air missiles. Mil proposes to upgrade around 200 Russian Federation Hinds to these standards as Mi-24VMs, but the future of this programme is uncertain.

2 x TV3-117VMA engine

Tv3_117Vm2,194-shp (1 636-kW) TV3-117VMA engines

GSh-231 23-mm two-barrel cannon

AIMG_0050X612X121_Berezin_GSh-23LCannonGSh-231 23-mm two-barrel cannonKrzesiny_82RB

General characteristics

  • Crew: 2–3: pilot, weapons system officer and technician (optional)
  • Capacity: 8 troops or 4 stretchers or 2400 kg (5,291 lb) cargo on an external sling
  • Length: 17.5 m (57 ft 4 in)
  • Rotor diameter: 17.3 m (56 ft 7 in)
  • Wingspan: 6.5 m (21 ft 3 in)
  • Height: 6.5 m (21 ft 3 in)
  • Disc area: 235 m² (2,530 ft²)
  • Empty weight: 8,500 kg (18,740 lb)
  • Max. takeoff weight: 12,000 kg (26,500 lb)
  • Powerplant: 2 × Isotov TV3-117 turbines, 1,600 kW (2,200 hp) each


  • Maximum speed: 335 km/h (208 mph)
  • Range: 450 km (280 miles)
  • Service ceiling: 4,900 m (16076 ft)



Internal guns

  • flexible 12.7 mm Yakushev-Borzov Yak-B Gatling gun on most variants. Maximum of 1,470 rounds of ammunition.
  • fixed twin-barrel GSh-30K on the Mi-24P. 750 rounds of ammunition.
  • flexible twin-barrel Gryazev-Shipunov GSh-23L on the Mi-24VP and Mi-24VM. 450 rounds of ammunition.
  • PKB passenger compartment window mounted machine guns

12.7 mm Yakushev-Borzov Yak-B Gatling gun


The Yak-B is a late Cold War era gatling gun of Soviet origin. It was developed for use on the Mi-24 attack helicopter as a far more capable machine gun than the UB-12.7 as used in the early models of the Mi-24. The Yak-B is a much heavier weapon than a heavy machine gun, but its 12.7mm caliber is much lighter than autocannon ammunition.

The Yak-B fires the 12.7x108mm round that is commonly used in Soviet heavy machine guns. The rate of fire is 4.000 to 5.000 rpm. In the Mi-24 it is fed by a 1.470 round belt. The Yak-B proved effective against infantry in the open and soft skin vehicles. Against dug-in infantry and armored vehicles performance proved poor.


Type Gatling gun
Caliber 12.7x108mm Soviet
Mechanism Gas operated
Barrel Four barrel, rifled
Dimensions ?
Weight 45 kg
Feeding Single belt feed
Rate of fire 4.000 – 5.000 rpm
Muzzle velocity 810 m/s
Recoil 540 kg peak recoil force


External stores

  • Total payload is 1,500 kg of external stores.
  • Inner hardpoints can carry at least 500 kg
  • Outer hardpoints can carry up to 250 kg
  • Wing-tip pylons can only carry the 9M17 Phalanga (in the Mi-24A-D) or the 9K114 Shturm complex (in the Mi-24V-F).


  • Bombs within weight range (presumably ZAB, FAB, RBK, ODAB etc.), Up to 500 kg.
  • MBD multiple ejector racks (presumably MBD-4 with 4 × FAB-100)
  • KGMU2V submunition/mine dispenser pods

First-generation armament (standard production Mi-24D)

  • GUV-8700 gunpod (with a 12.7 mm Yak-B + 2 × 7.62 mm GShG-7.62 mm combination or one 30 mm AGS-17)
  • UB-32 S-5 rocket launchers
  • S-24 240 mm rocket
  • 9M17 Fleyta (a pair on each wingtip pylon)

GUV-8700 gunpod


The large size of the gondola (3 meters) allow you to stow up to 1800 7,62x54R caliber rounds and 750 rounds caliber 12.7 × 108.

Alternatively, the Yak-B can ‘be replaced by an automatic 30mm grenade launcher AP-30 (9A800), and that’ the Air Force version of the more ‘known AGS-17infantry. With the AP-30 mounted the ammunition load drops to a maximum of 300 shots.

Aiming is done through a traditional viewfinder collimation.

Technical features

Gondala Universalnaya Vertolotnaya 8700
Name in Cyrillic: Универсальная вертолётная гондола 8700;
English name: Universal Helicopter Pod 8700;
Nationality ‘: USSR / Russia;
Type: gun-pod for helicopters;
Armament: two machine guns quadrinate GShG 7,62x54R caliber machine gun and a quadrinata Yak-B caliber 12,7 × 108 or an automatic grenade launcher AP-30 30mm;
Length: 3000 mm
diameter: 480mm
empty: 140 kg
with weapons and ammunition: 452 kg
Total loaded ammunition: 1,800 rounds cal. 7,62x54R, more ‘750 shots 12,7x108mm gauge (300 30mm for the AP-30)
Compatible aircraft: I-24/35; Mi-8/17; Ka-25; Ka-50/52.

Translated by google – Source

12.7 mm Yak-B


2 × 7.62 mm GShG-7.62 mm combination


one 30 mm AGS-17


Second-generation armament (Mi-24V, Mi-24P and most upgraded Mi-24D)

  • UPK-23-250 gunpod carrying the GSh-23L
  • B-8V20 a lightweight long tubed helicopter version of the S-8 rocket launcher
  • 9K114 Shturm in pairs on the outer and wingtip pylons

S-8 rocket


B-8V20 a lightweight long tubed


Upgraded cockpit

151399_800Upgraded cockpitmi-35m1287145867_Later_Hind_series_conv.png

Source: Military Today, Wiki,

Updated Dec 14, 2016

Video Hind in Syria Operations

The Russian Bumerang 8×8 Armoured Personnel Carrier


Boomerang-BM Turret

The Bumerang is an 8×8 wheeled Modular Armoured Fighting Vehicle and one of Russia’s most recent AFV’s unveiled during the 2015 Moscow Victory Day Parade.

The Bumerang is still under development and pending trials. During the 2015 Moscow Victory Day Parade, 2 variants were on display, the Armoured Personnel Carrier and Infantry Fighting Vehicle.

They can be fitted with mission/variant role modules. The modular construction normally allows them to be easily up armoured. Their chassis, engine and suspension are capable of accepting these upgrades with out significant loss in mobility.

boomerang_front_wavebreaker_belly_protection_zpstvyjmpgiThe Boomerang has a wave breaker at the front, deployed when the vehicle enters the water. The belly is also protected by an armor plate seen at the lower front.

The APC version is equipped with a Remote Weapon Station, which can be equipped with various calibre Machine Guns, but is featured in pictures as a 12.7mm heavy machine gun. It will be operated by most likely the vehicle commander remotely at his station and will probably have day and thermal channels on its sighting equipment.

boomerang_propeller425_zpsozymjjmkTwo waterjets used for amphibious operations

The Boomerang is powered by a 500 hp turbo-charged diesel engine the same type that powers the Kurganets-25 platform.

Source: Tank Nut Dave, Thread: Wheeled Armoured Vehicles Part Deux

Pictures: © Интернет-журнал “Армейский Вестник”, 2010 г. and Vitaly Kuzmin

Updated Aug 15, 2016

Bumerang 8×8 Infantry Fighting Vehicle: HereBoomerang_BTR_wheeled_8x8_armoured_vehicle_personnel carrier_Russia_Russian_defence_industry_military_equipment_017.jpg

HAL Light Combat Helicopter (LCH), India – Update I


The light combat helicopter (LCH) was designed and built by Hindustan Aeronautical Limited (HAL). It is an attack helicopter derived from the existing Dhruv helicopter.

The LCH can be deployed in various roles, including tracking slow-moving aerial targets, insurgency, destroying enemy defences, search and rescue, anti-tank and scouting. A datalink system transmits mission data to mobile platforms and ground stations operating within the network.


The LCH was developed to meet the requirements of the Indian Air Force and the Indian Army, who have ordered 62 and 114 units respectively. Its maiden flight took place in Bangalore in March 2010.

The Indian Air Force will procure 64 LCHs as part of a $4bn contract signed with Hindustan Aeronautics in March 2011. The helicopters will be armed with Helina missile with an extended range of 7km, a missile warning system and anti-missile countermeasures. Deliveries are scheduled to take place between 2013 and 2014.


HAL light combat helicopter design

The LCH is effective as both an anti-infantry and anti-armour helicopter. Main and tail rotor diameters are 13.3m and 2.05m respectively. The two-seater craft also has a tricycle crashworthy wheel landing gear and stealth capabilities. The flight controls and hydraulics of Dhruv have been redesigned for the LCH.


The helicopter is equipped with electronic warfare systems and advanced weapons systems, including a chin-mounted, twin-barrel M621 20mm cannon on a Nexter THL-20 turret, 70mm rockets, MBDA air-to-air, air-to-surface and anti-radiation missiles, and Helina anti-tank guided missiles. Explosive ordnance includes iron bombs, cluster bombs and grenade launchers.

M621 20mm cannon


The M621 is a French 20 mm automatic cannon, designed by GIAT (now Nexter Systems). It is used on armored vehicles, aircrafts, helicopters and small coastal vessels in France, India, Romania and other countries. Its variants include THL 20, chin mounting for helicopters; SH 20, door mounting for helicopters; CP 20, pintle-mounted naval gun, and others. The gun entered service in 1973 and is still in service today.


  • Type: Automatic gun
  • Calibre: 20×102 mm
  • Gun Weight: 100.3 lbs (45.5 kg)
  • Gun Length: 86.9 in (220.7 cm)
  • Bore Length: 57.5 in (146 cm)
  • Capacity: Belt fed, platform dependent capacity (160 for model 15A naval mounting, 300-750 for THL 20)
  • Rate of fire: 750 rpm
  • Muzzle velocity: 980-1030 m/s depending on ammunition type


f0Hgr0m.jpgM621 20mm cannon on a Nexter THL-20 turretmaxresdefaultLCH_config

Helina anti-tank guided missile

Indian_Anti-Tank HELINA_Nag MissileIndian Helina anti-tank guided missiles

The Nag (Hindi for “Cobra”) is an Indian indigenously developed anti-tank missile. It was developed by DRDO – India’s premier defence agency. This missiles enables the Indian Armed Forces to destroy tanks up to the distance of 4 km. The Nag is comparable to the FGM-148 Javelin, Spike or PARS 3LR.

The missile was developed under Integrated Guided Missile Development Program (IGMDP) which was first initiated in 1982 by Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam. Under this program various missiles were developed which includes – Agni, Akash, Nag,Prithvi and Trishul. The program was approved by the Prime Minister and her Scientific Team in 1980 and Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam was inducted to lead the program.

The Nag is a 3rd generation fire-and-forget type missile. It has an 8 kg tandem HEAT warhead. The Nag is a top attack missile. During flight it when approaching the target it flies upwards and then suddenly dives towards the target. This method of attack is very suitable to destroy tanks, because most of them have only a minimum level of armor protection in the upper part of the turret. The Nag can penetrate the latest generation armor, like explosive reactive armor and composite armor.

helina launcher 2Image

For guidance the Nag uses imagining infrared passive seeker system which is difficult to jam. The guidance system is also equipped with a CCD camera. Before the launch missile locks on the infrared image of the target. In flight it automatically guides itself onto the target. Hit probability with a single missile is 77%.

The body of the missile is fully made of fiberglass structure. The rocket motor of the missile uses nitramene-based double base sustainer propellant which is smokeless and makes hard to trace the shooter. Missile has a flight speed of 230 m/s.

The Nag is used by the missile carrier known as the NAMICA. There is also a helicopter based version known as HELINA (HELIcopter NAg). The NAMICA version uses a ‘lock on before launch’ system which means that the missile locks on to a target and is then launched. However the HELINA version uses ‘lock on after launch’ system so the range of the missile is extended to 7 km. The HELINA variant of this missile is on the verge of completing its trail. The HELINA missile was test fired in July 2015 near Jaisalmer, India. It hit 2 out of 3 targets. Source

Lahat ATGM

800px-LAHATLahat ATGM

Late in 1998, Israel Aircraft Industries, MBT weapon Systems Division, revealed that it had developed, under contract to the Israel Defence Force, a new laser-guided anti-tank missile called the LAHAT (LAser Homing Anti-Tank) which can be fired from existing 105 mm and 120 mm tank guns.


IAI believes the LAHAT missile, a gun launched projectile designed to destroy armoured vehicles as well as helicopters, is a cost-effective way for countries to update their existing 105 mm fleets that are becoming outgunned on the battlefield.

For the United States market, Israel Aircraft Industries, MBT Weapon Systems Division, has teamed with General Dynamics Ordnance Systems of the United Siates.

To defeat MBTs fitted with explosive reactive armour the LAHAT missile includes a tandem High Explosive Anti-Tank (HEAT) and is claimed to have a high angle of attack for effective armour penetration. Source

Weight 13 kg (28.7 lb)
Length 975 mm (38.4 in)
Diameter 105 mm (4.1 in)
Warhead Tandem HEAT
Warhead weight 10 kg (22.0 lb)

6,000–8,000 m (6,600–8,700 yd)
8,000–13,000 m (8,700–14,200 yd) air launched
Speed 285–300 m/s (940–980 ft/s)
Semi-Active Laser Homing
105–120 mm smooth bore
rotary-wing aircraft

Specification data

HAL’s LCH passes rocket trials; will participate in ‘Iron Fist’ exercise: Here



The LCH has a glass cockpit accommodating two crew, who sit one behind the other. The cockpit is equipped with multifunction displays, target acquisition and designation systems, and a digital video recorder to capture footage of the battlefield for use in debriefing. A helmet-mounted target system controls the turret guns mounted on the helicopter’s fuselage.

1287114447_PIC_0638P1010133-734233.JPGLCH New 3-723160

Sensors and countermeasures

The LCH is also equipped with state-of-the-art sensor suite. It includes a charge-coupled device camera, a forward-looking infra-red camera and a laser designator. The two cameras capture the location and position of enemies, ensuring clear visibility during bad weather conditions. The laser range-finder and designator aim laser-guided bombs and missiles towards the target.


The helicopter is also fitted with radar and laser warning receivers, a missile approach warning system, countermeasure dispensing systems and a missile jammer.

0HAL Light Combat Helicopter (LCH) attach gunship missle combat helicopter army in India by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (4)


The helicopter is powered by two HAL/Turbomeca Shakti turboshaft engines, each of which can generate up to 871kW and can run for up to 3,000 hours without maintenance. Each engine weighs 205kg and has an output speed of 21,000rpm.

HAL/Turbomeca Shakti turboshaft engine


The Turbomeca Ardiden is a family of turboshaft engines featuring simple, modular and compact design. They are built around a gas generator with two centrifugal compressor stages, coupled to a single-stage high-pressure turbine. The power turbine comprises two stages. The engine is controlled by a dual-channel Engine Electronic Control Unit (EECU). The Ardiden engines offer very low cost of maintenance and ownership. Developing from 1,200 to 2,000 shp of maximum power, the engine is suitable to power helicopters in the five to eight tons class. Besides, the Ardiden engines satisfy the most demanding mission requirements, while retaining full performance under high altitude and hot temperature conditions.

The Shakti, also known as Ardiden 1H1, is a turboshaft engine jointly developed by Turbomeca (France) and Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) based on the Ardiden turboshaft to power weaponized variants of the Dhruv Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH).


Emergency Power: 1,204 kW (1,614 hp)

Max Continuous Power: 880 kW (1,180 hp)

Max Power at TakeOff: 1,053 kW (1,412 hp)

OEI 2 min: 1,099 kW (1,473 shp)

OEI Continuous: 1,024 kW (1,373 shp)


Time Between Overhaul: 3,000 hour


Dry Weight: 180 kilogram (397 pound)

Engine data

The engine received European Aviation Safety Agency certification in 2007. It features a Full Authority Digital Electronic Control system, which decreases the work of the pilot by automatically counting engine cycles.

d.jpgImage @Photos: HAL HQ


The LCH has a cruise speed of 260km/h and a max speed of 275km/h. Its never-exceed speed is 330km/h. It can climb at a rate of 12m/s, and hits its maximum and altitude and service ceiling at 2,743m and 6,500m respectively. The helicopter has a ferry range of 700km.

hal_lch_dra.jpgImage @helis.com0003LCH_COMPARISONTable

Source: Air Force Technology,

Updated on July 31, 2016

F/A-18E/F Super Hornet Strike Aircraft

The US Navy F/A-18 E and F Super Hornet maritime strike attack aircraft, manufactured by Boeing, flew for the first time on November 29 1995. The Super Hornet is about 25% larger than its predecessor, the F/A-18C/D, but contains 42% fewer structural parts. The single-seat F/A-18/E and the two-seat F/A-18/F fly greater ranges with heavier payloads, have more powerful engines and provide greater survivability.


For reference see CF-18 Hornet: Details


F/A-18 Super Hornet orders and deliveries

The first low-rate initial production aircraft was delivered in December 1998, and all 12 of the first batch were delivered by November 1999.

In February 1999, the US Navy placed an order for 30 Super Hornets, in addition to the 12 already ordered. Following successful completion of operational evaluation, in June 2000 the USN ordered 222 fighters to be produced over five years.


The first full-rate production aircraft was delivered in September 2001.

A second multi-year contract was signed in January 2004 for 42 aircraft to be purchased between 2005 and 2009. Total requirement was for at least 545 aircraft. Over 500 aircraft had been delivered by April 2011.

Super Hornet programme and development

In July 2002, the F/A-18E/F began its maiden operational deployment on board USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72). In November 2002, the aircraft made its combat entry, striking air defence sites in Southern Iraq with Joint Direct Attack Munitions (JDAM). The aircraft was also deployed as part of Operation Iraqi Freedom in March 2003.


Improvements scheduled for Block 2 aircraft include a redesigned forward fuselage which has fewer parts and changes to the aircraft’s nose to accommodate the Raytheon APG-79 Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar. The first aircraft was delivered in September 2003.

The aircraft is fitted with new mission computers, fibre-optic network, Raytheon AN/ASQ-228 ATFLIR targeting pod, Boeing joint helmet-mounted cueing system and Raytheon AIM-9X next generation Sidewinder air-to-air missile.

In April 2007, Boeing announced that it had been asked by the US Navy to provide an Infrared Search and Track (IRST) system for the F/A-18E/F. Boeing has selected Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control to supply the system. In November 2011, the US Navy awarded a $135m contract for engineering and manufacturing development of the IRST sensor system. The IRST system is expected to achieve initial operating capability by 2016.

U.S. Navy Purchases F/A-18E/F Infrared Search and Track Systems

The Boeing Co., St. Louis, is being awarded an $82,084,777 fixed-price-incentive-firm contract for the procurement of 12 low-rate initial production infrared search and track (IRST) systems for the F/A-18E/F aircraft. The IRST system is a long-wave infrared detection system that targets airborne vehicles in a radar-denied environment. Work will be performed in Orlando, Florida (50 percent); St. Louis (38 percent); Santa Ana, California (7 percent); and Irvine, California (5 percent). It is expected to be complete in January 2020. Fiscal 2016 aircraft procurement (Navy) funds in the amount of $82,084,777 are being obligated on this award, none of which will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was not competitively procured pursuant to 10 U.S. Code 2304( c)(1). The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Maryland, is the contracting activity (N00019-17-C-0026). Source

F/A-18E/F Infrared Search and Track System

AN/AAS-42 system

irstaas42F-14D AAS-42 – Image:

Lockheed Martin’s IRST is a development of the AN/AAS-42 system that was originally carried by Northrop Grumman F-14D Tomcats. However, it has been undergoing development since then, first for the abortive pod-mounted system for the F-15 Eagle, and now further refined for the Super Hornet application. Source

irst10IRST21 Sensor System – Image: lockheedmartin.com20fs0pf


  • Long-range infrared scan and detection of airborne threats
  • Passive detection and ranging
  • Large field of regard
  • Immune to electronic deception
  • Programmable scan modes
  • Low false-alarm rate
  • Automatic target detection algorithms
  • Multiple mounting options


Source PDF


The F/A-18E/F IRST system is installed in the nose section of the centerline fuel tank on the aircraft. The IRST is the next generation of the F-14D AN/AAS-42 IRST that accumulated over 200,000 flight hours aboard US aircraft carriers. Boeing awarded the technology development contract to Lockheed Martin in May 2009. The US Navy has a requirement for 150 IRST systems with first deliveries due in 2011.

The new IRST technology developed by Lockheed Martin features high resolution providing dramatically improved raid cell count at maximum ranges. Compared to a radar at a maximum range the IRST is 40 times more accurate. The information gathered by the new sensor can stand alone or be fused with other sensor data to enhance situational awareness, ensuring first-to-see, first-to-shoot capability. It also enhances the engagement range of high performance air-to-air missiles such as the AIM-120 AMRAAM. The IRST has been designed to complement the latest generations of tactical radars providing long-range detection of airborne targets with low false alarms under subsonic and supersonic speed and clutter backgrounds such as blue sky to severe mountain and urban terrain. An additional benefit is that the IRST systems are effective against low radar cross section targets while reducing the threat posed by anti-radiation missiles and radar warners. Source

m02010102300006F/A-18E/F IRST system – Image:

In February 2007, Australia requested the FMS of 24 F/A-18F Block 2 aircraft. The contract was placed in May 2007. The first five aircraft were delivered in March 2010 and and rest of them were delivered by October 2011. The F/A-18F Block 2 aircraft cover the capability gap between the retirement of the F-111s in December 2010 and the delivery of the first F-35 Joint Strike Fighter to Australia in 2013.

The US Navy has approved System Development & Demonstration (SD&D) for an electronic attack version of the Super Hornet, the EA-18G, to replace the EA-6B Prowler. The EA-18G incorporates the Improved Capability III (ICAP III) suite developed for the Prowler. Two SDD aircraft were delivered. First flight of the EA-18G was in August 2006.

EA-18G Growler: Details


In May 2009, Boeing received a contract worth $48.9m for the development of Distributed Targeting (DT) system for super hornet aircraft.

In November 2011, the US Navy awarded a $48m contract to develop the Type 4 Advanced Mission Computer (AMC) for F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, which will replace the Type 3 AMC currently in use. It is expected to be completed by 2012.

Type 4 Advanced Mission Computer (AMC)


Boeing will collaboratively develop a new mission computer for the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet and EA-18G Growler following a contract awarded by the US Navy. According to a company statement issued on 10 November 2011, Boeing received the $48 million contract for the Type 4 Advanced Mission Computer (AMC).

The Type 4 Advanced Mission Computer (AMC) will replace the current Type 3 on the Super Hornet and Growler aircraft, both of which are manufactured by Boeing. The company said that the new hardware will increase aircraft performance, address obsolescence issues, and improve image- and mission-processing functions, ‘increasing warfighter capabilities for both domestic and international customers’.

The system will also better position the aircraft for future Navy Flightplan capability upgrades, which will see the US Navy ensure that the Super Hornet and Growler remain ahead of future threats. Boeing expects a production contract during 2012. Source

In September 2011, Boeing and the US Navy proposed to offer F/A-18E Super Hornet Block II version aircraft to the Japan Air Self Defence Force (JASDF).

In September 2011, the US Navy awarded a $5.297bn contract that includes delivery of 66 Super Hornet aircraft between 2012 and 2015.

AN / APX-111 IFF


The AN / APX-111 is a system for friend-to-enemy detection (IFF), which is used on the F / A-18 Hornet . Produced by BAE Systems .


Since IFF requests have to be received and answered from all directions, there are a total of five antennas on the F / A-18 flight cell covering the entire airspace. In addition to receiving and responding to requests, the system can also send such requests via an antenna at the front of the machine. In order to protect the inquiries from interception and interference by the enemy, they are encrypted in various ways. The APX-111 is equipped with a computer with the designation KIV-6 / TSEC.

AN APX-111 IFF transponder 3 Feb 2016.jpg.scale.LARGE

Technical specifications

  • Weight: 20,60 kg
  • Volume: 0,0134 m³
  • Power consumption: 180 watts
  • MTBF : 2500 hours
  • MTTR : 15 minutes
  • Error detection probability: 97%

Transponder system

  • Transmission power: 0.5 kW
  • Reception: -76 dBm
  • IFF modes: 1, 2, 3 / A, C, 4, S (Mode 5 can be retrofitted)

Query system

  • Range:> 185 km
  • Transmission power: 1.4 kW
  • Reception: -83 dBm
  • Target sector: 70 ° × 60 ° (forward direction)
  • Angular deviation: ± 2 °
  • Distance resolution: <152 m
  • Maximum targets: 32
  • IFF modes: 1, 2, 3 / A, C, 4 (Mode 5 can be retrofitted)
  • Waveform: monopulse


F/A-18 cockpit


The cockpit in the F/A-18E/F is equipped with a touch-sensitive control display, a larger multi-purpose liquid crystal colour display, which shows tactical information, two monochrome displays and a new engine fuel display. The aircraft retains the mission software and a high proportion of the avionics found in the C/D models.

1168906Front seat 

Honeywell AMPD 5-by-5-inch display

Honeywell AMFD 16 Sept 2014.jpg.scale.LARGE.jpg

The AMPD rugged display family consists of 5-by-5-inch forward avionics displays; 5-by-5-inch aft displays, and 8-by-10-inch avionics displays.

The AMPD replaces obsolete cathode ray tube (CRT)-based displays in legacy aircraft, and uses state-of-the-art active matrix liquid crystal display (AMLCD) technology.

The displays are full color, high density, and can be used during the day, at night, and with the night vision imaging system (NVIS). Of the AMPD family, the 5-by-5-inch versions are for the F/A-18E/F/G models, and the 8-by-10-inch versions are for the F/A-18F/G aft cockpit. The 8-by-10-inch model includes a direct digital video input.

The displays provide symbology, raster, and hybrid display formats, and support mono and full-color modes. Source

The cockpit also has a colour digital map and the pilots are equipped with night-vision goggles. The zero/zero ejection seat is the SJU-5/6 from Martin Baker Aircraft Company Ltd in the UK.

Martin Baker SJU-5/6 zero/zero ejection seat

F-18 Hornet Ejection: Here

Super Hornet weapons


The Super Hornet has 11 weapon stations which include two additional wing store stations and will support a full range of armaments including AIM-9 Sidewinder, AIM-7 Sparrow and AIM-120 AMRAAM air-to-air missiles, guided air-to-ground weapons such as Harpoon, SLAM/SLAM-ER, GBU-10, GBU-51, HARM and Maverick; and free-fall air-to-ground bombs, Mk-76, BDU-48, Mk-82LD, Mk-82HD and Mk-84. The aircraft can also carry the GPS- / inertially guided JDAM (Joint Direct Attack Munition), JSOW (joint stand-off weapon) and JASSM (joint air-to-surface stand-off missile).

Weapon pylon

fa-18e_165898_12_of_20F-18E – Image: michael_blockbugloadout22

Boeing is the prime contractor for the Joint Helmet-Mounted Cueing System (JHMCS) for the Super Hornet, to be fitted to Block 2 and retrofitted to Block 1 aircraft. Vision Systems International (jointly owned by Kaiser and Elbit) is the major subcontractor. JHMCS is currently in full-rate production. Deliveries of full-rate production systems began in 2005, although the system was deployed operationally during Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Joint Helmet-Mounted Cueing System (JHMCS)

The F/A-18E/F new lightweight gun system is the General Dynamics M61A2 20mm Gatling gun, which has a switchable firing rate of 4,000 or 6,000 shots a minute and a fully integrated linkless ammunition feed system.


Main Gun: 1x M61A1/A2 Vulcan 20mm gatling gun with 578 rounds;
4x AIM-9 Sidewinder (AIM-9X projected) + 2x AIM-120 AMRAAM; or 6x AIM-120 AMRAAM.
Other Weapons Carried: AGM-65 Maverick; AGM-84 Harpoon, SLAM, SLAM-ER; AGM-88 HARM/AARGM;
AGM-154 JSOW; AGM-158 JASSM; GBU-38 500-pound Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM);
GBU-31 2,000-pound Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM); Mk 82/84 General Purpose Bombs;
CBU-87 1,000-pound Combined Effects Munition; CBU-89 GATOR Mine System; CBU-97 1,000-pound Sensor Fuzed Weapon;
GBU-10 2,000-pound Paveway II; GBU-12 500-pound Paveway II; GBU-16 1,000-pound Paveway II;
GBU-24 2,000-pound Paveway III laser-guided bomb; Mk 62/63 Quickstrike Naval Mines.


1x M61A1/A2 Vulcan 20mm gatling gun


The M61A1 and M61A2 produced by General Dynamics Ordnance and Tactical Systems are externally powered six-barrel 20mm Gatling gun systems that offer lightweight, highly lethal combat support for a variety of air, land and sea platforms.

The M61A1 and M61A2 increases multiple-hit probabilities when compared to single barrel guns operating at lower rates of fire. The M61A1 and M61A2 weapons are based on the proven Gatling principle of operation and provide reliability up to 10 times greater than single-barrel guns.

The M61A2 shares the same features as the M61A1, but is 20 percent lighter. The M61A2 will meet or exceed the M61A1 gun’s reliability, maintainability and supportability features. It is now available for applications where weapon system weight reduction is critical.


Gun type Six-barrel, 20mm, externally powered



248 pounds (112.5 kg)

202 pounds (light barrel), 228 pounds
(heavy barrel) (91.6, 103.4 kg)

Rate of fire 4,000/6,000 shots per minute
Dispersion 8 milliradians diameter, 80 percent circle
Muzzle velocity 3,380 feet (1,030m) per second
Average recoil force

@ 4,000 shots per minute

@ 6,000 shots per minute

Rotary, linkless, closed loop

2,133 pounds (9.4 kN)

3,200 pounds (14.2 kN)

Drive system Hydraulic, electric, pneumatic


AIM-9M Sidewinder missile

Sidewinder AIM-9M

The Lima was followed in production in 1982 by the AIM-9M, which is essentially an improved AIM-9L. The Mike has improved background rejection, counter-countermeasures capability and a low smoke motor to reduce the visual signature of the inbound weapon. The AIM-9M has the all-aspect capability of the AIM-9L model, but provides all-around higher performance. The M model has infra-red countermeasures, enhanced background discrimination capability, and a reduced-smoke rocket motor. Deliveries of the initial AIM-9M-1 began in 1982. The only changes from the AIM-9L to the AIM-9M were related to the Raytheon Guidance Control Section (GCS). Several models were introduced in pairs with even numbers designating US Navy versions and odd for US Air Force. All AIM-9M GCS are comprised of three major assemblies; a seeker assembly for detecting and tracking the target; an electronics assembly for processing detected target information; and a servo assembly that transforms electrical tracking signals to mechanical movement of the fins. An umbilical cable assembly provides electrical interface between the missile GCS and the aircraft launcher. The umbilical I-3 cable also allows the flow of coolant from the LAU-7 to the missile GCS. AIM-9M GCS versions include the WGU-4A/B used in the AIM-9M-1 and AIM-9M-3, the WGU-4C/B used in the AIM-9M-4, the WGU-4D/B used in the AIM-9M-6, and the WGU-4E/B GCS used in the AIM-9M-8. The WGU-4E/B GCS uses advanced technology that has evolved through the WGU-4D/B development, while expanding the potential of the IRCM detection circuitry and improving the missile’s capability with respect to tactical IRCM deployment. Source



The AIM-120 AMRAAM (Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missile) is one of the most modern, powerful, and widely used air-to-air missiles in the entire world. After it entered limited service in 1991, this missile has been exported to about 35 countries around the world, where it has certainly been proven with over 3 900 test shots and 10 combat victories.

By the 1980s, the US deemed its current stock of air-to-air missiles, particularly the medium-range AIM-7 Sparrow, were obsolete, or at least not as capable as the latest Soviet missiles of the time. While the Sparrow was effective, with about 60 kills, it was not effective enough. In particular, it had one crushing fault—it was not fire-and-forget, meaning that the pilot was forced to remain on the scene and in danger until the missile reached its target. So, development of the AIM-120 AMRAAM began, along with European development of a short-range missile, resulting in the ASRAAM. In 1991, the AMRAAM entered limited service in the US Air Force. Two years later, it was fully operational there as well as the US Navy, while other countries started to show considerable interest.

Country of origin United States
Entered service 1991
Missile length 3.66 m
Missile diameter 0.18 m
Fin span 0.53 m
Missile launch weight 150.75 kg
Warhead weight 22.7 kg
Warhead type HE blast-fragmentation
Range of fire up to 75 km
Guidance active radar homing



AGM-65 Maverick

AGM-84 Harpoon, SLAM, SLAM-ER


The Harpoon missile provides the Navy and the Air Force with a common missile for air, ship, and submarine launches. The weapon system uses mid-course guidance with a radar seeker to attack surface ships. Its low-level, sea-skimming cruise trajectory, active radar guidance and warhead design assure high survivability and effectiveness. The Harpoon missile and its launch control equipment provide the warfighter capability to interdict ships at ranges well beyond those of other aircraft.

The Harpoon missile was designed to sink warships in an open-ocean environment. Other weapons (such as the Standard and Tomahawk missiles) can be used against ships, but Harpoon and Penguin are the only missiles used by the United States military with anti-ship warfare as the primary mission. Once targeting information is obtained and sent to the Harpoon missile, it is fired. Once fired, the missile flys to the target location, turns on its seeker, locates the target and strikes it without further action from the firing platform. This allows the firing platform to engage other threats instead of concentrating on one at a time.

An appropriately configured HARPOON can be launched from an AERO-65 bomb rack, AERO-7/A bomb rack, MK 6 canister, MK 7 shock resistant canister, MK 12 thickwall canister, MK 112 ASROC launcher, MK 8 and MK 116 TARTAR launcher, or submarine torpedo tube launcher.

The AGM-84D Harpoon is an all-weather, over-the-horizon, anti-ship missile system produced by Boeing [formerly McDonnell Douglas]. The Harpoon’s active radar guidance, warhead design, and low-level, sea-skimming cruise trajectory assure high survivability and effectiveness. The missile is capable of being launched from surface ships, submarines, or (without the booster) from aircraft. The AGM-84D was first introduced in 1977, and in 1979 an air-launched version was deployed on the Navy’s P-3 Orion aircraft. Originally developed for the Navy to serve as its basic anti-ship missile for fleetwide use, the AGM-84D also has been adapted for use on the Air Force’s B-52G bombers, which can carry from eight to 12 of the missiles.

The AGM-84E Harpoon/SLAM [Stand-Off Land Attack Missile] Block 1E is an intermediate range weapon system designed to provide day, night and adverse weather precision strike capability against high value land targets and ships in port. In the late 1980s, a land-attack missile was needed. Rather than design one from scratch, the US Navy took everything from Harpoon except the guidance and seeker sections, added a Global Positioning System receiver, a Walleye optical guidance system, and a Maverick data-link to create the Stand-off Land Attack Missile (SLAM). The AGM-84E uses an inertial navigation system with GPS, infrared terminal guidance, and is fitted with a Tomahawk warhead for better penetration. SLAM can be launched from land-based or aircraft carrier-based F/A-18 Hornet aircraft. It was employed successfully in Operation Desert Storm and UN relief operations in Bosnia prior to Operation Joint Endeavor.


The SLAM-ER (Expanded Response) Block 1F, a major upgrade to the SLAM missile that is currently in production, provides over twice the missile range, target penetration capability, and control range of SLAM. SLAM-ER has a greater range (150+ miles), a titanium warhead for increased penetration, and software improvements which allow the pilot to retarget the impact point of the missile during the terminal phase of attack (about the last five miles). In addition, many expansions are being made to improve performance, survivability, mission planning, and pilot (man-in-the-loop) interface. The SLAM-ER development contract was awarded to McDonnell Douglas Aerospace (Now BOEING) in February of 1995. SLAM-ER achieved its first flight in March of 1997. All Navy SLAM missiles are currently planned to be retrofitted to SLAM-ER configuration. About 500 SLAM missiles will be converted to the SLAM-ER configuration between FY 1997 and FY 2001.

Primary Function: Air-to-surface anti-ship missile
Mission Maritime ship attack
Targets Maritime surface
Service Navy and Air Force
Contractor: Boeing [ex McDonnell Douglas]
Power Plant: Teledyne Turbojet and solid propellant booster for surface and submarine launch
Program status Operational
  sea-launch air-launch SLAM SLAM-ER
First capability 1977 1979    
Thrust: 660 pounds
Length: 15 feet
(4.55 meters)
12 feet, 7 inches
(3.79 meters)
14 feet, 8 inches
(4.49 meters)
Weight: 1,470 pounds
(661.5 kilograms)
1,145 pounds
(515.25 kilograms)
1,385 pounds
(629.55 kilograms)
Diameter: 13.5 inches (34.29 centimeters)
Wingspan: 3 feet (91.44 centimeters)
Range: Greater than 60 nautical miles 150+ miles
Speed: 855 km/h
Guidance System: Sea-skimming cruise with mid-course guidance monitored by radar altimeter, active seeker radar terminal homing inertial navigation system with GPS, infrared terminal guidance
Warheads: Penetration high-explosive blast (488 pounds)
Explosive Destex
Fuze Contact
Development cost $320.7 million
Production cost $2,882.3 million
Total acquisition cost $3,203.0 million
Acquisition unit cost $527,416
Production unit cost $474,609
Quantity Navy: 5,983; Air Force: 90
Platforms A-6, F/A-18, S-3, P-3, B-52H, ships



Advanced Anti-Radiation Guided Missile (AARGM)

AGM-88 HARM high-speed anti-radiation missiles Range: 150 kilometres; 92 miles (80 nmi) Speed:  2,280 km/h (1,420 mph)

The Advanced Anti-Radiation Guided Missile (AGM-88E) provides the U.S. Navy, U.S. Marine Corps and Italian Air Force the latest and most advanced weapon system for engaging and destroying enemy air defenses and time-critical, mobile targets. AARGM is a supersonic, medium-range, air-launched tactical missile compatible with U.S. and allied strike aircraft, including all variants of the F/A-18, Tornado, EA-18G, F-16, EA-6B, and F-35 (external).

Designed to upgrade the AGM-88 High-Speed, Anti-Radiation Missile system (HARM), AARGM features an advanced, digital, anti-radiation homing sensor, millimeter wave (MMW) radar terminal seeker, precise Global Positioning System/Inertial Navigation System (GPS/INS) guidance, net-centric connectivity, and Weapon Impact Assessment transmit (WIA). Missile Impact Transmitter capability is available for approved customers. The missile offers extended-range engagement, as well as organic, in-cockpit emitter targeting capability and situational awareness.

New capabilities for the warfighter include:

  • Anti-radar strike with advanced signal processing and vastly improved frequency coverage, detection range and field of view
  • Time-critical, standoff strike with supersonic GPS/INS point-to-point or point-to-MMW-terminal guidance
  • Missile-impact zone control to prevent collateral damage through tightly coupled, Digital Terrain Elevation Database-aided GPS/INS
  • Counter-emitter shutdown through active MMW-radar terminal guidance
  • WIA transmission prior-to-impact for bomb damage assessment

Orbital ATK is teamed with MBDA to provide this advanced, cost-effective weapon system to U.S. and approved allied customers.

AARGM Fact Sheet OA Interim

AGM-154 JSOW joint stand-off weapon

The AGM-154A (Formerly Advanced Interdiction Weapon System) is intended to provide a low cost, highly lethal glide weapon with a standoff capability. JSOW family of kinematically efficient, air-to-surface glide weapons, in the 1,000-lb class, provides standoff capabilities from 15 nautical miles (low altitude launch) to 40 nautical miles (high altitude launch). The JSOW will be used against a variety of land and sea targets and will operate from ranges outside enemy point defenses. The JSOW is a launch and leave weapon that employs a tightly coupled Global Positioning System (GPS)/Inertial Navigation System (INS), and is capable of day/night and adverse weather operations.

The JSOW uses inertial and global positioning system for midcourse navigation and imaging infra-red and datalink for terminal homing. The JSOW is just over 13 feet in length and weighs between 1000-1500 pounds. Extra flexibility has been engineered into the AGM-154A by its modular design, which allows several different submunitions, unitary warheads, or non-lethal payloads to be carried. The JSOW will be delivered in three variants, each of which uses a common air vehicle, or truck, while substituting various payloads.

AGM-154A (Baseline JSOW) The warhead of the AGM-154A consists of 145 BLU-97/B submunitions. Each bomblet is designed for multi-target in one payload. The bomblets have a shaped charge for armor defeat capability, a fragmenting case for material destruction, and a zirconium ring for incendiary effects.

AGM-154B (Anti-Armor) The warhead for the AGM-154B is the BLU-108/B from the Air Force’s Sensor Fuzed Weapon (SFW) program. The JSOW will carry six BLU-108/B submunitions. Each submunition releases four projectiles (total of 24 per weapons) that use infrared sensors to detect targets. Upon detection, the projectile detonates, creating an explosively formed, shaped charge capable of penetrating reinforced armor targets.

AGM-154B – Image:

AGM-154C (Unitary Variant) The AGM-154C will use a combination of an Imaging Infrared (IIR) terminal seeker and a two-way data link to achieve point target accuracy through aimpoint refinement and man-in-the-loop guidance. The AGM-154C will carry the BLU-111/B variant of the MK-82, 500- pound general purpose bomb, equipped with the FMU-152 Joint Programmable Fuze (JPF) and is designed to attack point targets. Source

GBU-38 500-pound, GBU-31 2,000-pound Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM)

CBU-97 1,000-pound Sensor Fuzed Weapon

Wind-corrected munitions dispenser (WCMD) – Image:

GBU-10 2,000-pound, GBU-12 500-pound, GBU-16 1,000-pound Paveway II

GBU-24 2,000-pound Paveway III laser-guided bomb

Mk 62/63 Quickstrike Naval Mines

wamus_mines_mk63_picMark 63 “Quickstrike” Mine. USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) in November 2003. U.S. Navy Photograph 031104-N-1573O-036. – Image:

Conversion of Mark 82 [500 lbs. (227 kg)] bomb. Superseded Destructor EX-52. Marks 62, 63 and 64 are known as the “Quickstrike” series and have a variable influence target designation system that can be used against either land or sea targets. Quickstrike was conceived as a new series of ground mines, replacing the ones that had become compromised as a result of the Vietnam War. These new mines use the same design concept as do “smart” bombs, that is, they are simple bolt-on additions to a standard air-dropped bomb. Quickstrike’s design emphasizes ease of maintenance and ease of mine preparation for use. For example, the older mines required refrigeration of their batteries to prolong life, the Quickstrikes do not. Source


The AN/ALQ-124 integrated defensive countermeasures system (IDECM) provides a coordinated situation awareness and manages the on-board and off-board deception countermeasures, the expendable decoys, and signal and frequency control of emissions. The system has been jointly developed by BAE Systems information & electronic warfare systems (IEWS – formerly Sanders) and ITT Electronic Systems.

The IDECM system includes the ALE-47 countermeasures dispenser, the ALE-50 towed decoy and the AN/ALR-67(V)3 radar warning receiver. IDECM began operational evaluation in December 2002 and was successfully deployed during Operation Iraqi Freedom.

The BAE Systems Integrated Defense Solutions (formerly Tracor) ALE-47 countermeasures dispenser system is capable of dispensing chaff cartridges, flares, and the POET and GEN-X active expendable decoys.

ALE-47 countermeasures dispenser

450px-ALE-47_countermeasures_detectorALE-47 countermeasures dispenser and associated equipmentsfa-18e_165898_11_of_20ALE-47 countermeasures dispenser under F-18E – Image: michael_block

The ALE-50 Towed Decoy, from Raytheon E-Systems, provides long-range detection and extremely fast deployment against most radar-guided threats.

ALE-50 Towed Decoy

AN/ALE-50 towed decoy system

The AN/ALE-50 towed decoy system was developed by Raytheon to protect multiple US military aircraft from radar-guided missiles. The ALE-50 consists of a launch controller, launcher and towed decoy. It can be used on a variety of platforms without modification. When deployed, the ALE-50’s expendable aerial decoy is towed behind the aircraft. The decoy protects the host aircraft providing a more attractive target and steering the radar-guided missile away from the aircraft and right to the decoy. ALE-50 has countered both surface-to-air and air-to-air missiles. Currently, the ALE-50 is installed on F-16s aircraft and is planned for installation on B-1B bombers and F/A-18 aircraft. The ALE-55 is a derivative of the ALE-50 would be the production decoy installed on B-1B bombers. Source

elec_an-ale-50_aerial_towed_decoy_lgAN/ALE-50 towed decoy system – Image:

BAE Systems AN/ALE-55 fibre-optic towed decoy has completed development testing and will replace the ALE-50 from December 2009 when it enters service. The Raytheon AN/ALR-67(V)3 radar warning receiver intercepts, identifies and prioritises threat signals, which are characterised in terms of frequency, amplitude, direction and pulse width.

Raytheon AN/ALR-67(V)3 radar warning receiver



The AN/ALR-67(V)3 Advanced Special Receiver is a radar warning receiver (RWR) designed to meet Navy requirements through the year 2020. This is an upgrade to the ALR-67 (V)2 system currently used on F/A-18 Hornet, F-14 Tomcat, and AV-8 Harrier aircraft. It will enable Navy and Marine Corps tactical aircraft to detect threat radar emissions, thus enhancing aircrew situational awareness and aircraft survivability. The program is in the Engineering and Manufacturing Development (EMD) phase, with development work by Hughes, Los Angeles, CA.

The AN/ALR-67(v)3 ASR contributes to full-dimensional protection by improving individual aircraft probability of survival through improved aircrew situational awareness of the radar guided threat environment.  Source



The Super Hornet is equipped with the APG-73 radar manufactured by Raytheon. The APG-73 radar has an upgraded processor with increased speed and memory capacity in comparison to the AN/APG-65, which was installed on the earlier builds of the Hornet. The modes of the APG-73 include air-to-ground tracking, air-to-air velocity search mode, range while search and track while scan.

Raytheon’s AN/APG-79 Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) fire control radar will increase the F/A-18’s air-to-air target detection and tracking range and provide higher resolution air-to-ground mapping at longer ranges. The The AN/APG-79 AESA entered Low Rate Initial Production (LRIP) in September 2003 and began Operational Evaluation (OPEVAL) in July 2006. It is being fitted to block 2 aircraft and retrofitted to 135 block 1 aircraft. The radar is planned to begin operational deployment on the USN F/A-18s in 2008.

APG-79 multi-mode radar

APG-79-AESA-1AAPG-79 multi-mode radar with passive detection mode and active radar suppression

With its active electronic beam scanning — which allows the radar beam to be steered at nearly the speed of light — the APG-79 optimizes situational awareness and provides superior air-to-air and air-to-surface capability. The agile beam enables the multimode radar to interleave in near-real time, so that pilot and crew can use both modes simultaneously.

Now in full rate production for the U.S. Navy and Royal Australian Air Force, the APG-79 demonstrates reliability, image resolution, and targeting and tracking range significantly greater than that of the previous mechanically scanned array F/A-18 radar. With its open systems architecture and compact, commercial-off-the-shelf parts, it delivers dramatically increased capability in a smaller, lighter package. The array is composed of numerous solid-state transmit and receive modules to virtually eliminate mechanical breakdown. Other system components include an advanced receiver/exciter, ruggedized COTS processor, and power supplies.

In addition to the APG-79, Raytheon supplies the F/A-18E/F aircraft with several other systems. Among these are the current APG-73 radar, ATFLIR forward-looking infrared targeting pod, ALR-67(V)3 digital radar warning receiver, ALE-50 towed decoy and a variety of missiles and bombs, including laser-guided weapons such as the Paveway and JSOW. Source


The Super Hornet also carries Raytheon’s Miniature Airborne Global Positioning System Receiver (MAGR-2000). Using an open systems architecture, the receiver provides improved position, velocity and time performance reporting, resulting in a more accurate weapon delivery.



The MAGR 2000 design is a GPS Receiver Applications Module (GRAM) based open system architecture that is modular in design and incorporates modern electronics. The MAGR 2000 is a form, fit, and function backward compatible replacement of the MAGR, and provides enhancements including improved acquisition and GPS solution performance, all-in-view GPSsatellite tracking and GPS integrity. Source

The aircraft is being fitted with the Raytheon AN/ASQ-228 ATFLIR (Advanced Targeting Forward-Looking Infrared) precision targeting pod. ATFLIR consists of a 3-5 micron staring focal plane array targeting FLIR, BAE Systems Avionics high-powered diode-pumped laser spot tracker, BAE Systems Avionics navigation FLIR and CCD TV camera. Initial Operating Capability (IOC) was achieved in April 2003 and the system is now in full-rate production.

Raytheon AN/ASQ-228 ATFLIR targeting pod

rtn_231015Advanced Targeting Forward-Looking Infra-Red (ATFLIR)

The AN/ASQ-228 Advanced Targeting Forward-Looking Infrared (ATFLIR) is a multi-sensor, electro-optical targeting pod incorporating thermographic camera, low-light television camera, target laser rangefinder/laser designator, and laser spot tracker developed and manufactured by Raytheon. It is used to provide navigation and targeting for military aircraft in adverse weather and using precision-guided munitions such as laser-guided bombs. It is intended to replace the earlier AN/AAS-38 Nite Hawk pod in US Navy service.

2145381511Image: Avia News

ATFLIR is 72 in (183 cm) long, weighs 420 lb (191 kg), and has a slant range of 40 mi (64.3 km), said to be useful at altitude of up to 50,000 ft (15,240 m).[1] It has fewer parts than many previous systems, which is intended to improve serviceability (although early examples, in service with VFA-115 ‘Eagles’ in 2003 experienced problems). Crews indicate that it offers much greater target resolution and image accuracy than previous systems.

ATFLIR presently is used only by the US Navy on the Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet and the earlier F/A-18C/D and with Marine F/A-18Cs when deployed onboard aircraft carriers. It is normally carried on one of the fuselage hardpoints otherwise used for AIM-120 AMRAAM missiles. 410 pods were delivered to the U.S. Navy. Pods have also been delivered to Switzerland and Australia, and six pods will be delivered to Malaysia. Source

US Marine Corps aircraft are being fitted with the Northrop Grumman Litening AT Advanced Targeting pod, with 540 x 512 pixel FLIR, CCD TV, laser spot tracker, infrared laser marker and infrared laser rangefinder / designator.

Northrop Grumman Litening AT Advanced Targeting pod

Northrop Grumman’s widely fielded LITENING system is a combat proven, self-contained, multi-sensor targeting and surveillance system. LITENING enables aircrews to detect, acquire, auto-track and identify targets at extremely long ranges for weapon delivery or nontraditional intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance missions. LITENING’s 1K FLIR, 1K charged-coupled device (CCD), laser imaging sensors, advanced image processing and digital video output provide superior imagery, allowing aircrews to identify and engage targets under a wide range of battlefield conditions.

LITENING is in operation worldwide

The pod is currently flown by the U.S. Marine Corps, all components of the U.S. Air Force, and international customers. The latest configuration, LITENING G4, is authorized for export to NATO countries, including Canada, the United Kingdom and Korea.

LITENING targeting pods feature:

  • Full 1K FLIR and CCD, the highest resolution available in any fielded targeting pod
  • Digital, high definition video to the cockpit
  • Laser imaging sensors for more accurate identification
  • Color symbology for reduced pilot workload and integration with new cockpit displays
  • Multiple fields of view for a complete view of the situation
  • Advanced two-way plug-and-play datalinks, including NET-T integration, that seamlessly communicate with ground stations
  • Flexible upgrade path to bring older pods to the latest configuration affordably.

LITENING by the numbers

  • More than two million hours flown, including more than 770,000 combat flight hours
  • Greater than 97% availability
  • Integrated on the F-16 Block 30, F-16 Block 40/50, A-10C, AV-8B, B-52, EA-6B, F-15E and F/A-18 C/D.
  • More than 500 LITENING G4 pods delivered
  • More than 800 pods total delivered


F/A-18F aircraft also being fitted with the Raytheon SHARP multi-function reconnaissance pod, set to replace USN Tactical Airborne Reconnaissance Pod (TARPS), currently flown on the F-14 Tomcat. SHARP is capable of simultaneous airborne and ground reconnaissance and has sensors manufactured by Recon/Optical Inc. 16 LRIP systems have been ordered and the first was delivered in April 2003. The system is deployed on aircraft operating from USS Nimitz carriers.

Raytheon SHAred Reconnaissance Pod (SHARP)


The U. S. Navy requires an organic, all-weather, day/night, manned, tactical air reconnaissance capability to provide continuous and immediate intelligence support to the Battle Group Commander (BGC) in the prosecution of independent, joint, or combined operations as well as to provide intelligence data for the security of those forces under his/her command. This capability is required to replace the F-14 Tactical Air Reconnaissance Pod (TARPS) capability, scheduled for phase-out in FY03. To meet this requirement, the Department of the Navy will incorporate a SHAred Reconnaissance Pod (SHARP) on the centerline of the F/A-18E/F that will employ a suite of sensors to collect infrared, visible, and synthetic aperture radar (SAR) digital imagery at medium and high altitudes.

SHARP will be a major contributor to the precision strike capability of GPS and digital, image-guided weapons and will IOC with the first FA-18F squadron. The system will utilize COTS/NDI dual-band electro-optic/infrared (EO/IR) sensors and subsystems in a pod for tactical and other aircraft. It will provide all altitude over flight and long range stand-off EO/IR imagery and SAR, capable of near real-time datalink to afloat and shore-based JSIPS stations. The SHARP program is currently funded to meet the Navy’s minimum warfighting requirement of 24 pods. The inventory objective is 50 systems (40 operational and 10 pipeline).


The required capability described herein must be supportable within the capability of the deployed carrier air wing or the F/A-18E/F aircraft forward deployed support posture. The complete airborne reconnaissance system must employ digital technology and be compatible with Common Imagery Ground/Surface System (CIG/SS) compliant ground stations. The reconnaissance system must include overflight and standoff capability in both day and night conditions. The full range of reconnaissance capability may be provided through separate and interchangeable medium and high altitude sensors that can be easily reconfigured into optimum mission suites. However, a single sensor that could meet both medium and high altitude requirements is desirable. To ensure true multi-mission capability of the F/A-18E/F aircraft the SHARP pod must be capable of being installed or removed with full mission turnaround capability of less than one hour. Source


26500333_nRjJ6-MImage: from the web

The aircraft’s power is provided by two F414-GE-400 turbofan engines from General Electric. The engines are an advanced derivative of the GE F404 engines installed on the Hornet. The air inlets have been enlarged to provide increased airflow into the engines.

The engines each provide 22,000lb thrust, with afterburn giving a maximum speed in excess of Mach 1.8.

The structural changes to the airframe on the F/E variant of the aircraft increase the internal fuel capacity by 3,600lb, a 33% higher fuel capacity than the F-18C/D variant. This extends the mission radius by up to 40%.

F414-GE-400 turbofan engines

f414_01General Electric F414 turbo-fan engines

The General Electric F414-GE-400 is a 22,000-pound class afterburning turbofan engine. The engine features an axial compressor with 3 fan stages and 7 high-pressure compressor stages, and 1 high-pressure and 1 low-pressure turbine stage. At a weight of 2,445 pounds, the F414-GE-400 has a thrust-to-weight ratio of 9. The F414 is one of the U.S. Navy’s newest and most advanced aircraft engines. It incorporates advanced technology with the proven design base of its F404 predecessor – for example the F414 features a FADEC (Full Authority Digital Engine Control) system – to provide the Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet and the EA-18G Growler with a durable, reliable and easy-to-maintain engine.


Manufacturer: General Electric Co.
Thrust: 22,000 pounds
Overall Pressure Ratio at Maximum Power: 30
Thrust-to-Weight Ratio: 9
Compressor: Two-spool, axial flow, three-stage fan
LP-HP Compressor Stages: 0-7
HP-LP Turbine Stages: 1-1
Combustor Type: Annular
Engine Control: FADEC
Length: 154 in (3.91 m)
Diameter: 35 in (88.9 cm)
Dry Weight: 2,445 lbs (1,109 kg)
Platforms: F/A-18E/F Super Hornet; EA-18G Growler


Main material source

Revised Mar 15, 2017


Aircraft Specifications:

Primary Function: Multi-role tactical fighter and attack aircraft
Prime Contractor: Airframe: McDonnell Douglas (The Boeing Co.); Engines: General Electric Co.
Power Plant: 2x General Electric F414-GE-400 afterburning turbofan engines
Thrust: 14,000 pounds dry thrust; 22,000 pounds thrust with afterburner (each engine)
Wingspan: 44 ft 9 in (13.68 m)
Length: 60 ft 1 in (18.5 m)
Height: 16 ft (4.87 m)
Weight (Empty): 32,000 lbs (14,520 kg)
Maximum Takeoff Weight (MTOW): 66,000 lbs (29,930 kg)
Payload: Max. 34,000 lbs (15,420 kg)
Speed: Max: Mach 1.8+/1,034 kts/1,190 mph (1,934 km/h)
Service Ceiling: 50,000+ ft (15,240+ m)
Range: 1,275 nm/1,467 miles (2,346 km) – clean plus two AIM-9 Sidewinder missiles
Combat Radius: 390 nm/449 miles (723 km)
Crew: E models: One; F models: Two

Aircraft Inventory (September 2015):

F/A-18A: 95
F/A-18B: 21
F/A-18C: 368
F/A-18D: 129
F/A-18A/B/C/D Hornet Total: 613

F/A-18E: 279
F/A-18F: 261
F/A-18E/F Super Hornet Total: 540