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McDonnell Aircraft Corp F4 Phantom II multi-purpose jet fighter bomber
McDonnell Aircraft Corp F4 Phantom II multi-purpose jet fighter bomber. An all-weather fleet air defense aircraft, retaining the attack capabilities. It was a missile-armed interceptor for defending the US Navy's ships and supply convoys. It could detect airborne threats at beyond visual range and direct Sparrow semi-active radar guided missiles against them. For its day the Phantom was fast betting many world speed and height records.
The first F-4 took flight 27 May 1958 and it went operational in October 1961. It had a crew of two, pilot and electronic warfare officer. The McDonnell F-4 Phantom was used during the Vietnam war for strike and ground support as well as air-to-air combat. It could carry four AIM-9 Sidewinders, four Sparrow radar-guided missiles and an optional 20mm gun pod.
The USAF decided to evaluated the Phantom for interdiction, counter-air operations and close air support. On 17 January 1962 the US Air Force decided to buy the F-4 Phantom as it was far more flexible than their Republic F-105 Thunderchiefs. The USAF Phantom was designated F-4Cs and in 1965 they were Southeast Asia and the Vietnam War. On 10 July two F-4C crews shot down their first two MIG 17 jet fighters over North Vietnam with Sidewinder missiles.
Experience in the early years of the Vietnam war showed that the MiG-17, MiG-19, and MiG-21 fighters were more manoeuvrable than the US F-4 and F-105 which had not been designed for close contact dog fights relying upon air to air missiles for their own protection. In response to this the F-4 was redesigned. The upgraded McDonnell Douglas F-4E Phantom II first flew in June 30th 1967, It had increased maneuverability, an improved engine, and an internally mounted 20mm multibarrel gun with improved fire-control system.
The British Royal Navy purchased 52 F-4K Phantoms. The British Royal Air Force purchased 118 aircraft under the F-4M designation. Both were renamed FG.1 Phantom [RN] and FGR.2 Phantom[RAF].
The McDonnell F-4 Phantom was retired by the navy in 1986 but it continued to fly on with the Reserve units for many years. It took part in Operation Desert Storm in the Gulf as the F-4G “Wild Weasel” variant that specialized in the suppression of enemy air defenses. The Phantom was the first multiservice aircraft, flying concurrently with the U.S. Navy, US Air Force and US Marine Corps.
Military Airforce Fighter Bomber Aircraft - Airshow Photos
There are many International Air Tattoos and air shows like the one at Fairford Air Base, Duxford, Farnborough, Biggin Hill, Cosford, Eastbourne AirShow, Abingdon UK air show, Boscombe Down UK air shows, Greenham Common, Mildenhall air fete where you can have fun with all the family looking at static aviation displays as well as the acrobatics in the air. You can see many of these planes, Supermarine spitfire, tornado, battle of Britain fighters, warbirds, vulcan,, Lancaster, lightning, mosquito, Eurofighter, VC10, DC10 Shackleton, jaguar, typhoon, sabre, super sabre, delta dart, talon, phantom, falcon, thunderbirds, eagle. Learjet, lockheed, Douglas, McDonnell Douglas F-15A Eagle, McDonnell Douglas AV-8B Harrier II USMC, Vought F4U-5NL Nite-Corsair, McDonnell Douglas A-4F Skyhawk USMC, Lockheed HC-130H Hercules, Lockheed P-38J Lightning, Curtiss P-40E Warhawk. North American P-51D Mustang, Republic P-47B/D Thunderbolt Razorback, Bell P-39D Airacobra , Northrop P-61B Black widow, Martin B-26B/C Marauder, North American B-25B/C Mitchell, B-24J Liberator, Boeing B-17G Flying Fortress, Boeing B-29 Superfortress, Zero, Hawker Hurricane, Junkers Ju 52, Messerschmitt Me 110C, Messerschmitt Bf 109E, Focke Wulf Fw 190A, Panavia Tornado RAF, Grumman A-6A Intruder, Grumman F-14A Tomcat, Douglas F-18A Hornet USN, Lockheed S-3B Viking, Grumman E-2C Hawkeye, Lockheed C-130H Hercules, Lockheed C-5A/B Galaxy to name but a few
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