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McDonnell Douglas F/A-18 Hornet

The F-18 Hornet began life as a derivative of the in the mid 1960's as a derivative of the Northrop P-530 Cobra. Much of the research was based on the successful F-5 and F-5 Tiger II, and the  T-38 Talon. The resulting aircraft was the Northrop prototype. The wing similarity and proportions show the family resemblance. Lacking some experience in  developing aircraft for the US Navy, Northrop joined with McDonnell Douglas, cooperatively to promote the YF-17 derivative (two prototype aircraft) as well as the Northrop F-18L. The fighter was selected on May 2, 1975. With the new changes incorporated. The new designation was F/A-18 signifying the Fighter/Attack capability of this fine aircraft.

The F/A-18 Hornet, while not the fastest fighter is considered the "king" of maneuverability and close combat. The Hornet is a twin engine, single and twin place fighter/attack aircraft with outward canted twin rudders. The engine intakes are set well back along the fuselage with fixed air intakes and bleed air exit ducts mounted above the engine intakes on each wing. Elongated forplanes extend forward from the wings. An inlet chisel bleeds air from between the fuselage and engines up and back towards the rudders to enhance low speed handling and maneuverability. The tail planes rotate on an axis point and the outer wing sections fold in for carrier use.

cougars2_small.jpg (1734 bytes)

For more photos of the Hornet click on the galleries to the left

I am aware there are a couple bad links in the image galleries, please let me know if you find any others

The Canadian versions of these aircraft (shown in most of the photographs) were originally know as the CF-188A (single place) and CF-188B (twin place) aircraft. The main difference between the Canadian version and the American variant of the Hornet is the port mounted high powered search light for identification of potentially hostile aircraft. This light is just below and in front of the port LEX (leading edge extension.) Most Canadian aircraft also have the "dummy" canopy painted on the underside of the fuselage. Known now simply as the CF-18A and CF-18B, the original deployment of the squadrons were as follows;

Number 409 "NIGHTHAWK" Squadron (CF-18A) based at CFB Solingen, West Germany,

Number 410 "COUGAR" Squadron (CF-18A), based at CFB Cold Lake, Alberta, Canada,

Number 421 "RED INDIAN" Squadron (CF-18A), based at CFB Solingen, West Germany,

Number 425 "ALLOUETTE" Squadron (CF-18A), based at Bagotville, Quebec, Canada.

Number 439 "SABER TOOTHED TIGER" Squadron (CF-18A, CF-18B), based at CFB Solingen, West Germany,

Aircraft Evaluation and Test Establishment,  (CF-18A, CF-18B), based at CFB Cold Lake, Alberta, Canada,

Specifications; Engines; (two) 71.2 kN. (16,000 lbs. st.) General Electric F404-GE-400 low bypass afterburning turbofans, Wing Span 11.43 m. (37' 6"), 8.38 m. (27' 6") (folded), Length; 17.07 m. (56' 0"), Maximum Take off weight; 22,328 kg. (49,224 lbs.), Maximum level speed; more than Mach 1.8, Combat Radius; 1,019 km. (633 miles), Armament;  (one) M-61 20mm. six barrel gun (nose mounted), with nine external hardpoints for a variety of missile/weapon/fuel configurations.

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Wings Over The Pacific was updated November 17, 1998