British Royal Navy de Havilland Sea Vixen twin tail boom carrier based interceptor jet fighter - Photographic computer wallpaper British Royal Navy de Havilland Sea Vixen carrier based interceptor jet fighter

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British Royal Navy de Havilland Sea Vixen carrier based interceptor jet fighter

The de Havilland Sea Vixen was the first British interceptor jet fighter to be armed only with missiles. It saw combat in 1961 in the Persian gulf and was retired from service in 1971. It had begun to replace the de Havilland Sea Venom in 1959 and became the Royal Navy's main carrier fighter of the 1960s. The de Havilland Sea Vixen interceptor was the largest of the de Havilland twin tail boom series of jet fighter aircraft. Both wings folded to enable storage on a sea going carrier. When the de Havilland Sea Vixen FAW.1 (Fighter All Weathers) entered service with the British Royal Navy it was a very modern jet fighter aircraft, matching nearly any possible enemy. It caused considerable interest from other countries, including NATO allies and Australia.

In 1963 the improved Sea Vixen FAW.2 variant entered operational service. It had the enlarged tail booms that extended forward of the wing leading edge to give more room for Electronic Counter Measures ECM equipment as well as the more fuel. The Sea Vixen could carry more modern missiles and the canopy was changed to give the pilot and observer better visibility.. Improved ejector seats were fitted.

In the summer of 1961 Iraq was about invade Kuwait. This was the time of the height of the British Fleet Air Arm and the Royal Navy's carrier force before the cuts. The British carrier HMS Victorious moved from the South China Sea to the Persian Gulf. Royal Marines were landed in Kuwait. De Havilland Sea Vixens patrolled the skies, and when a further RN carrier arrived off Aden, Iraq's President Kassem suddenly back-pedalled on his intentions to invade. The Sea Vixen's final job was to oversee the withdrawal of British forces from Aden in 1967 before being replaced by Phantoms

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