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Thread: advanced or not? question about RF-16

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    advanced or not? question about RF-16

    I met with some web sites, saying RF-16's plan had been abandoned since late 1960th by the U.S. mlitary. thus, this type of plane still exists? why some air forces are still equiped with RF-16? isn't it a bit out of date?
    some kind of feeling of my own. don't make joke of me wowooo
    waiting for yourrrrrr reply

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    Quote Originally Posted by agerlnon View Post
    I met with some web sites, saying RF-16's plan had been abandoned since late 1960th by the U.S. mlitary. thus, this type of plane still exists? why some air forces are still equiped with RF-16? isn't it a bit out of date?
    some kind of feeling of my own. don't make joke of me wowooo
    waiting for yourrrrrr reply
    if mig-21s are flying, why not f-16A(R)s?

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    Quote Originally Posted by agerlnon View Post
    I met with some web sites, saying RF-16's plan had been abandoned since late 1960th by the U.S. mlitary. thus, this type of plane still exists? why some air forces are still equiped with RF-16? isn't it a bit out of date?
    some kind of feeling of my own. don't make joke of me wowooo
    waiting for yourrrrrr reply
    Not true if you means plans not actual use.
    Plans were never abandoned even up to late 1990s with many contracts granted. The manned recon potentials of the F-16 are very good even today if you ask me. Even though it may not have the loiter time of todayís UAVs, it does have the advantages of speed, the ability to get in and out low and fast, maneuverability, and contrary to popular believe, a manned crew.

    You donít need to redesign the aircraft to get the "R" designation................all you need is a high tech pod off your wing (or a Gimball bellow the fuselage with light structural modification) and the associated instruments in the cockpit.

    Additional info on this website.

    http://www.f-16.net/f-16_versions_article24.html
    Wolf Hunter

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    Tactical recon is unquestionably an important role, but I'd question whether having recon-only aircraft is a good idea for most small- to mid-sized air forces. It's a highly specialized capability which a strike fighter with a (relatively) cheap pod can do just as well.

    In the Cold War, the sheer size of photorecon gear meant that specialized recon aircraft were really the only option, but now that better technology allows for a single pod to do the same job, it seems to make more sense to just delegate the recon role to your strike squadrons.

    UAVs are also starting to come onto the forefront and will probably be able to take over a portion of the RF-16 role. Recon pods mounted on other aircraft will account for another portion. And satellites may be able to handle some of the recon mission (I know that very few nations have this kind of capability, but there is reason to believe that it will eventually be a possibility for nations like India, China, etc.)

    Note: If I recall correctly, most of the MiG-21s still flying today are (relatively) new (the Chinese only stopped building their J-7 copies in 2006). And many of the older ones still flying are rather crash-prone, in part due to reliability issues and in part due to the fact that the "Fishbed" can be a bit hard to handle.

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