Old F-16s as a strike solution: JASSM tested into F-16 Block 30
WASHINGTON — A few days ago, the US Air Force Reserve Corps conducted a critical test. In fact, the so-called “pre-Block versions” F-16 was tested at the Air National Guard Command Test Center [AATC] with a Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile [JASSM] payload.
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As “pre-Block versions” F-16s are the aircraft we know as Block 15, 20, and 30. In essence, they are F-16 “pre-Block versions” to be “invented” as stages of development with significant differences between them, as in the good old days there were two types, the F-16A/B [Block 10,15, 20] and the F-16C/D [Block 30]. We then learned the blocks to get to the “best” F-16V Block 70/72. Other seasons, other equipment, and needs!
The US Reserve and National Guard maintain enough “pre-Block versions” F-16s in service that have plenty of flight hours left. National Guard F-16As were the first and only to carry AIM-7 missiles when AIM-120s were not yet available. Today, all of its fighter jets can carry the AIM-120 for missions to protect US airspace, but it doesn’t stop there.
The use of JASSM by the “pre-Block versions” F-16 marks the beginning of a new era for the fighters in service around the world. So they [F-16A/B and F-16C/D] can also undertake strike missions without the need for expensive upgrades. JASSMs can be fired beyond the range of most enemy anti-aircraft systems, giving “pre-Block versions” F-16s precision strike capabilities to join USAF fighter jet “packs”.
Of course, F-16 Block 30 of the USAF has undergone several minor improvements during its career. Countries around the world cannot afford expensive upgrades or new versions of the F-16, so the test shows that these fighters can probably be used in new strike roles, with the purchase of advanced weapons such as the JASSM. The only problem, however, could again be funding, as JASSM is neither free nor cheap, but it is still an option.
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