Ext2014 Portugal Viper 15109 Chrislofting 2

General Dynamics F-16AM Fighting Falcon (x2)

The General Dynamics F-16 Fighting Falcon is currently the most numerous combat aircraft in NATO. Originally developed for the USAF as a day fighter, the F-16 has evolved into a highly capable multi-role combat aircraft that despite flying for the first time in 1974 is still in production. Over 4,500 F-16s have been produced over the past 49 years and 3,000 of them are still in service with 25 nations around the world. The most recent version is called the Block 70/72 and includes a new cockpit, computers, an advanced AESA radar based on the one installed in the F-35.

A relative late comer to operating the F-16A, during 1990 Portugal first acquired 20 new build aircraft partly in payment for the US militaries use of Lajes AB in the Azores with deliveries commencing in 1994. A second order for 25 surplus USAF examples was placed in 1998. These aircraft have now been upgraded to MLU standards. Today two squadrons of F-16s remain, both are based at Monte Real Air Base.

As part of our celebration of 50 years of the F-16, the Portuguese Air Force will be sending a pair of aircraft to take part in our static display lineup.

Photo Credit: Chris Lofting

On display

Role Friday Saturday Sunday
Static No Yes Yes