General Dynamics F-111E Aardvark

Pima Air and Space Museum Aircraft

Manufacturer
General Dynamics
Markings
20th Tactical Fighter Wing, 77th Tactical Fighter Squadron, RAF Upper Heyford, United Kingdom, 1992
Designation
F-111E
Serial Number
68-0033

General Dynamics F-111E Aardvark

Design of the F-111 began in the late 1950s in answer to an Air Force requirement for a supersonic low-level tactical bomber. The F-111 is the first swing-wing aircraft to enter production for the U.S. Air Force. The moveable wings allow the aircraft to perform well at both slow and high speeds making it safer and more efficient. A controversial attempt by the Department of Defense to require the design to also serve as an interceptor for the Navy failed when the aircraft proved to be unsuitable for carrier operations, but led to the development of the F-14 Tomcat. The first F-111A flew in December 1964 with the first production aircraft reaching service in 1967. The F-111E is a slightly modified and upgraded version of the original A model and was intended as an interim design while the substantially upgraded F-111D was developed. The Aardvark served in the U.S. Air Force until the mid-1990s when the last of them were retired. The last operational F-111s were retired by the Royal Australian Air Force in 2011.

Specifications
Wingspan 63ft (extended)
Length 73 ft 6 in
Height 17 ft 1 in
Weight 92,500 lbs (loaded)
Max. Speed 2.2 Mach
Service Ceiling 69,000 ft
Range 4,100 miles
Engines 2 Pratt & Whitney TF30-P-3 turbofans 18,500 lbs of thrust each
Crew 2

General Dynamics BGM-109G GLCM

Pima Air and Space Museum Aircraft

Manufacturer
General Dynamics
Markings
United States Air Force, 1983
Designation
BGM-109G
Serial Number
12436C0001

General Dynamics BGM-109G GLCM

The cruise missile has become one of the preferred weapons of the United States military over the last 20 years. The Gryphon is a mobile Ground Launched Cruise Missile (GLCM) designed to serve as a tactical nuclear weapon in Europe. It is virtually identical to the non-nuclear Tomahawk cruise missiles used by the United States in several Middle East conflicts. Beginning in 1983 BGM-109Gs were stationed in England, Belgium, Germany and Italy. They were wildly unpopular with the populations of these countries and large protests were held in all four nations. In 1987, the United States and the Soviet Union entered into the Intermediate Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty that called for the elimination of the Gryphon and similarly ranged Soviet missiles. This treaty marked the first ever reduction in nuclear forces. The last of them were deactivated in 1991 and all but a handful that were saved for museums were destroyed. Also see Transporter Erector Launcher (TEL) and Launch Control Center (LCC).

Specifications
Wingspan 8 ft 7 in
Length 18 ft 2 in
Weight 2,650 lbs (loaded)
Max. Speed 500 mph
Range 1,500 miles
Engines 1 Booster Motor: Atlantic Research solid-fuel rocket booster 7

Fighting Falcon F-16A

Pima Air and Space Museum Aircraft

Manufacturer
General Dynamics
Markings
162nd Fighter Wing, Arizona Air National Guard, 1992
Designation
F-16A
Serial Number
80-0527

Fighting Falcon F-16A

The F-16 originated in a 1972 Air Force request for a lightweight air combat fighter (LWF) which was intended as a lower cost companion to the F-15 Eagle. Prototypes began flight testing in 1974 and it was announced as the winner of the LWF competition in 1975. The first full production aircraft were delivered to the Air Force in 1978. Officially named Fighting Falcon the F-16 is almost universally called “Viper” by its pilots. The name was taken from the fighter featured in the television series “Battlestar Galactica” which first aired at the time the F-16 was entering service. Production of the F-16 has outlasted the company that designed it. General Dynamics was bought by Lockheed-Martin in 1993. As of 2017 a total of twenty-seven countries have operated the F-16 with more than 4,500 built.

Specifications
Wingspan 32 ft 9.5 in
Length 49 ft 3.5 in
Height 16 ft 8.5 in
Weight 37,500 pounds (loaded)
Max. Speed Mach 2.05
Service Ceiling 55,000 ft
Range 2,400 miles
Engines One Pratt & Whitney F100-PW-200 turbofan
Crew 1