USAF begins avionics systems upgrade on F-16 Fighting Falcon fleet


The 35th Fighter Wing of the US Air Force (USAF) has begun an upgrade of its F-16 Fighting Falcon aircraft fleet at Misawa Air Base in Japan.

The aircraft will receive an avionics systems upgrade to further improve the fleet’s readiness, situational awareness and tactical capabilities.

The avionics upgrade combines information with the pilots’ aircraft sensors and heads-up display, the USAF stated.

13th Fighter Squadron operations director lieutenant colonel Wesley Hales said: “The upgrade will provide a more accurate depiction of what is going on in the heads-up display (HUD).

“Our radar picture represented on a square wasn’t always true to scale. Something coming straight at an aircraft would eventually launch to the side of our view. Whereas now, we basically have a God’s eye view of what’s going on.”

"The upgrade will provide a more accurate depiction of what is going on in the heads-up display (HUD)."

The HUD is a display on the aircraft that transfers important aircraft and combat information such as the target range, aircraft flight and navigational data to pilots.

14th Fighter Squadron operations director lieutenant colonel Matthew Kenkel said: “This enables us to see and process data faster during dynamic and complex missions.

“Multiple changes to hands-on throttle and stick functionality enables pilots to more effectively use the displays while keeping their hands on the controls of the aircraft.”

The aircraft maintenance unit personnel are working together to simultaneously phase both the 13th and 14th Fighter Squadrons’ fleet into the new upgrade by 1 August.


Image: An F-16 Fighting Falcon being prepared for an M7.1 upgrade at Misawa Air Base, Japan. Photo: courtesy of the US Air Force.