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Spinners last won the day on August 4

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  1. I recommend you download the original with it's amazing weapons.
  2. Messerschmitt-Bölkow-Blohm Panther - Marineflieger 1, Deutsche Marine, 2007 Formed as the result of several mergers in the late 1960's the German aerospace manufacturer Messerschmitt-Bölkow-Blohm (MBB) became an integral part of the Panavia consortium designing and building the swing-wing Tornado for the air forces of Germany, Italy and the UK. But as early as 1975, MBB began to conduct research into the field of stealth aircraft and during 1981 MBB began developing a design for a viable stealth aircraft supported by funding from the German government. The resultant design was known as 'Project Lampyridae' (Firefly) and independently of American stealth research the Lampyridae used a similar 'faceted' design approach to Lockheed's 'Have Blue' technical demonstrator and the subsequent F-117 Nighthawk stealth attack aircraft. However, shortly after the existence of the Lampyridae project was revealed to the United States (during a technical exchange meeting at MBB's Ottobrunn facility in Bavaria in 1986) the Lampyridae project was suddenly terminated for unspecified reasons but diplomatic pressure on the part of the United States has long been assumed. MBB's dissatisfaction with this decision was short-lived when they were unexpectedly given an invitation to participate in the Grumman X-29 Forward Swept Wing project. The X-29 was a project to design and test a forward-swept wing fighter with canard control surfaces and other innovative aircraft technologies such as the use of computerised fly-by-wire controls and the use of composite materials to control the aeroelastic divergent twisting experienced by forward-swept wings and to reduce weight. The first X-29 took to the air in 1984 and the two X-29s were flight tested during the remainder of the decade but whilst the programme was an overall success there was some disappointment that the X-29 did not demonstrate any noticeable increase in agility - primarily due to the flight control system being moderated to prevent any excessive pitching rotation that could cause the aircraft from departing out of control and/or suffer structural damage. MBB could see that a combination of the stealth qualities of their Project Lampyridae allied to a forward swept-wing design but with larger control surfaces (and faster control surface actuators) would lead to an operational agile stealth fighter aircraft. In 1990, and with the backing of the German government, they launched 'Project Panther' to design and built a new multi-role stealth fighter for the German Air Force and Marineflieger with a projected in-service date of 2002. Using the excuse of reunification costs Chancellor Helmut Kohl made an election promise to cancel the Eurofighter and in mid-1991 German Defence Minister Volker Rühe withdraw Germany from the Eurofighter project and quietly diverted Germany's Eurofighter funding into Project Panther. To avoid the problems associated with concurrently developing a new airframe and a new engine, MBB selected the logical off-the-peg choice of the General Electric F110-GE-132 afterburning turbofan rated at 17,000lbs dry thrust and 32,000lbs thrust with afterburner and the Panther's closely spaced twin engines incorporate MBB designed 2D pitch-axis thrust vectoring nozzles with a range of ±20 degrees. These engines give the Panther a thrust-to-weight ratio greater than unity when in a typical combat configuration and without external stores the aircraft can achieve 'supercruise' to about Mach 1.2 and exceed Mach 2.0 with afterburner. Development moved swiftly during the mid-1990's and the first prototype 'Panther 01' (one of an eventual eleven engineering and manufacturing development aircraft) was unveiled at Ottobrunn, Bavaria on April 1st, 1998 taking to the air on August 15th, 1998 and appearing at the Farnborough air show during the following month where it appeared in the static park before making a low-speed flypast and departure on the final day. The first production contract was signed on January 2nd, 1999 for 170 Panther ADV aircraft (optimised for air defence) and 180 Panther IDS aircraft (optimsed for strike/attack) although differences between the two are confined to avionics and the two variants share virtually identical airframe and propulsion systems. In 2002, a major programme review saw a decrease in the overall number of aircraft to be procured from 350 to 280 and a multi-year procurement plan was implemented to stretch out production with an acceptable increase in the system unit cost (aircraft, training and spare parts) from €70 million per aircraft to €85 million per aircraft although this had further increased to €90 million per aircraft by 2005. Entering service with Marineflieger 1 in 2006 the Panther currently serves with the German Air Force and Marineflieger and has been exported to Denmark, Norway, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates and is currently in the running to replace the Finnish Air Force's ageing F/A-18 Hornets in the so-called HX Fighter Programme with a decision now scheduled to take place in 2021. My trawl of the SF1 archives continues...
  3. Soko G-4 Super Galeb v1.1

    Excellent - thank you!
  4. Soko G-4 Super Galeb - Irish Air Corps, 1988 Skin Credit: aleks
  5. BAC A-11B Strikemaster - 604th Special Operations Squadron, USAF, 1969
    An excellent add-on. Thank you.
  6. Ukroboronprom UV-1 Merlin - 39th Tactical Aviation Squadron, Ukrainian Air Force, 2018 The 'National Reorganization Process' was the rather grand name used by it's leaders for the military dictatorship that ruled Argentina from 1976 to 1983 following the coup d'état of March 1976 and towards the late 1970's the military junta started an ambitious project to create three indigenous combat aircraft consisting of the FMA IA 63 Pampa trainer/attack aircraft, the IA 67 Córdoba light attack bomber and the SAIA 90 air superiority fighter. By 1980, FMA (Fabrica Militar de Aviones) and Dornier had already developed a working relationship as a result of their combined development of the FMA IA 63 and for the SAIA 90 they established a second project office in the city of Córdoba for the development, production and marketing of a new fighter aircraft design based on a preliminary design by Dornier which could then be adapted by FMA to the requirements of the Argentine Air Force. Dornier's design bore an overall likeness to the F/A-18 Hornet but featured a trapezoidal wing shape and was smaller overall and considerably lighter thanks to an even higher composite content. FMA estimated a lengthy development period of about10 years with a first flight of the prototype in 1989 and with deliveries following about two years later and this was judged to be acceptable. However, by 1981 FMA was in serious financial difficulties which led to Dornier exiting the partnership leaving FMA desperately searching for new partners during 1981 to 1983 including Aermacchi-Aeritalia, McDonnell Douglas and Fairchild but Argentina's severe financial problems saw the project placed on indefinite hold by President Raúl Alfonsín in January 1984. Despite this, the Chiefs of the General Staff of the Argentine Air Force secretly diverted funds from other areas of their budget into the project to keep the SAIA 90 alive during the hyperinflation of the late 1980's. In July 1989 the incoming President Carlos Menem promised to strengthen the Argentine Armed Forces and successfully tackled inflation with the 'Convertibility Plan' allied to a series of privatisations allowing him to announce on July 9th, 1992 that the SAIA 90 project would be relaunched as an indigenous project called ACA'96 (Avión de Combate Avanzado 1996) to replace the fighter fleet before the turn of the century. The Belavezha Accords of December 1991 declared that the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics effectively ceased to exist and established the Commonwealth of Independent States as a successor entity. From this promising new beginning, relations between Russia and the Ukraine slowly deteriorated with disputes over the Crimea and then the city of Sevastopol due to it's role of being the home port of the Black Sea Fleet. Finally, a major dispute flared up over energy supplies and the Ukraine's huge gas debt arrears to Russia were paid off by the transfer of the nuclear-capable weapons that Ukraine inherited from the USSR and the Tu-160 strategic bombers and Su-27 fighters. During 1994 the Ukrainian Government sought a multi-role fighter aircraft that would not align them to either Russia or the West and identified the promising FMA ACA'96 design as being the best choice and opened up diplomatic talks with the Argentinian Government about licence-production of the ACA'96 in the Ukraine. With the Argentinian economy on another downward spiral agreement was quickly reached and the Kharkiv State Aviation Manufacturing Enterprise (later part of Ukroboronprom) was selected as the production facility but with all development and testing continuing to be done in Argentina. The prototype ACA'96, by now designated as the FMA IA 96, took to the air on May 25th, 1996 and finally entered service with the Argentine Air Force on November 20th, 1999. In Ukrainian service the aircraft is designated as the UV-1 'Merlin' and production aircraft entered service in 2002 with the 39th Tactical Aviation Squadron based at Vasylkiv, Kiev Oblast in Central Ukraine. Skin Credit: torno
  7. Rockwell F-31K Mustang II - Grupo 6 de Caza, Fuerza Aerea Argentina, 2018 The X-31 experimental jet fighter was designed and built by Rockwell and Messerschmitt-Bölkow-Blohm as part of a joint US/Germany 'Enhanced Fighter Maneuverability' programme to test thrust vectoring technology in both pitch and yaw allied to an advanced flight control system to provide controlled flight at very high angles of attack. Whilst being a radical new design the X-31 used a wide variety of parts from previous production aircraft including the F/A-18 Hornet front fuselage (including the cockpit, ejection seat and canopy) and the F-16 Fighting Falcon's landing gear plus the Cessna Citation's main landing gear wheels and brakes. This dramatically reduced the development time and risk by using flight-qualified components and enabled the first of just two X-31's to take to the air on October 11th, 1990 and over 500 test flights were flown between 1990 and 1995. With a huge fall in defence spending from the 'peace dividend' Rockwell began to look at ways of using many of the X-31's technologies in a low-cost fighter aircraft and in 1992 they proposed an 'F-31' version powered by a non-afterburning version of the General Electric F110 turbofan rated at 16,000lbs dry thrust. Deleting the thrust-vectoring and afterburner reduced a considerable amount of weight from the rear fuselage and Rockwell calculated that the lack of an afterburner would give the small and light F-31 such an increase in range that most missions could be flown without external drop tanks. On the home-front Rockwell proposed an A-31 version to supplement and eventually replace the A-10 Thunderbolt claiming that the A-31 would be about one-half of the cost of the proposed A-16 Fighting Falcon. But Rockwell's main efforts were on the export market and especially the Gulf States and Saudi Arabia and it was interest from the latter and also South Korea that encouraged Rockell to proceed with development at the end of 1993. Marketing their new fighter as the 'F-31 Mustang II' orders were placed by South Korea (72) and Saudi Arabia (59) followed by a home order of 30 aircraft for the US Navy to supplement their F-5E Aggressor Force and then 100 A-31C's for the US Air Force. In December 1998, the Royal New Zealand Air Force became the third export customer when they placed an order for 34 F-31K's to replace it's ageing Skyhawks but the acquisition was cancelled by the new Labour government in March 2000 in a controversial move as "an air combat force is not a priority in the current benign security environment". With most of the F-31K's having already rolled off the production line Rockwell did not take the cancellation lightly and, faced with huge cancellation charges, the New Zealand government breathed a sigh of release when the Argentinian Government, led by Fernando de la Rúa, negotiated the purchase of the 34 F-34K's for the Fuerza Aerea Argentina at a reduced price. Entering service with Grupo 6 de Caza in August 2001 the F-31K's continue in service based at the Tandil Military Air Base in the Buenos Aires Province. Skin Credit: Gepard
  8. Excellent Geary. Psssst! Your Roo's need rotating.
  9. ScreenShots Sueltos

  10. Grumman Tiger FGA.1 - No.1 Squadron, Royal Air Force, 1966 Despite the infamous 1957 White Paper (which dictated that the RAF would not need any manned combat aircraft whose role could be covered by missiles) by early 1960 the RAF had two main aircraft projects under development; OR339 for an advanced tactical strike and reconnaissance aircraft and OR356 for a common replacement for the RAF's Hawker Hunter fighter-bombers and the Royal Navy's Sea Vixen carrier-based fighters. Ideally, both projects required some consolidation of the UK aircraft industry with government organised mergers and soon English Electric, Vickers-Armstrong, Bristol and Hunting Aviation merged together to form the British Aircraft Corporation in 1960 to develop the TSR.2 to OR339. Hawker Siddeley Aviation had already acquired Folland Aircraft in 1959 and followed this by acquiring de Havilland Aircraft Company and Blackburn Aircraft in 1960. In 1961, they submitted their advanced P.1150 VTOL strike fighter to NATO Basic Military Requirement 3 (NBMR-3) calling for a supersonic V/STOL strike fighter with a combat radius of 460 kms and a dash speed of Mach 1.5 with a 910kg payload. However, changes made to the NBMR-3 requirement led to the P.1150 being considered to be undersized and therefore unsatisfactory leading to a redesign. A new and larger aircraft design, re-designated as the P.1154, soon emerged and was submitted by Hawker Siddeley Aviation to the Ministry of Aviation for both NATO NBMR-3 and to the UK's OR356. In May 1962, the P.1154 emerged as the 'technical winner' in the NBMR-3 competition but this did not lead to orders being placed as the French government withdrew from participation once the Dassault Mirage IIIV design had lost. NATO's NBMR-3 selection went unheeded by it's member nations and the whole project was terminated. The loss of a potentially large NATO order immediately destabilized the P.1154 project and played right into the hands of the reluctant Admiralty who decided to buy the American F-4 Phantom aircraft as their Sea Vixen replacement, thus throwing the entire cost of development and production onto the RAF. In a statement to the House of Commons the Prime Minister explained, " I have to tell the House that this is not a practicable proposition. The problem here is that on these present estimated requirements, and on the latest realistic estimate of the remaining life of the Hunter aircraft, the P.1154 will not be in service in time to serve as a Hunter replacement.” The axe finally fell on the P.1154 on September 3rd, 1962. Meanwhile, having failed to secure any US Navy contracts for their F11F-1F 'Super Tiger', Grumman had aggressively marketed the Super Tiger to foreign customers eventually gaining important export orders to Japan and Canada that had kept the Bethpage production line open. Having previously offered the West German Government a version of the F-11F-1F powered by the Rolls-Royce Avon 301R, rated at 12,500 lbs dry thrust and 16,360 lbs thrust with reheat, Grumman quickly dusted off the design and offered it to the UK Government as a Hawker Hunter replacement. With the RAF so focused on holding on to TSR.2 at all costs they were keen to adopt this off the shelf proposal that was far cheaper than any paper project so the Ministry of Aviation quickly created OR366 to cover the adoption of the Super Tiger. A production order for 200 Tiger FGA.1's was placed with Grumman on January 1963 with the first examples entering service in April 1964 with No.1 Squadron based at RAF Wittering. Skin Credit: Ravenclaw007

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