Local

March 15, 2013

Fighting Falcon hails proud heritage at Luke

Tags:
56th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

Tail number 78-0081, the first F-16 Fighting Falcon permanently assigned to Luke Air Force Base, sits on the flightline Dec. 6, 1982.

The F-16 Fighting Falcon has served the U.S. Air Force as one of the world’s premier fighter aircraft, and for nearly a quarter of a century Luke Air Force Base has produced air-to-air and air-to-ground combat warriors in the venerable fighter.

With the mission of training the world’s greatest F-16 fighter pilots and maintainers, while deploying mission-ready warfighters, Luke’s roots with the F-16 began Dec. 6, 1982, when the base’s first permanently assigned Fighting Falcon, an ‘A-model,’ arrived.

Prior to the F-16’s arrival, Luke provided training in the F-15 Eagle, as well as the F-4 Phantom II, F-5 Tiger and
F-104 Starfighter. The base’s first class of F-16 student pilots began training on Jan. 25, 1983, and completed the 18-sortie, 24.1-hour training course nearly two months later on March 14. Almost immediately after, Luke expanded its training program to include foreign pilots and maintainers, and on April 26, four Pakistani pilots began training in the F-16.

Both Luke and the F-16 made a huge leap forward in 1984 with the arrival of the upgraded F-16C Block 25 model, which boasted enhanced avionics and improved handling.

Thirty years later, Luke is still producing F-16 pilots for the combat air forces, including pilots from other countries, in the Block 25 model, but also in Block 42 and 52 aircraft as well. In fact, Luke is the only Air Force base that provides F-16 initial training to active-duty pilots. Additionally, as the aircraft has become more sophisticated, featuring the latest technological enhancements, the training course for new F-16 pilots has expanded from the initial 24.1-hour course to a 55-sortie, 73-flying hour course.

Today, Luke continues its proud heritage of training F-16C pilots in four active-duty squadrons – the 62nd, 308th, 309th and 310th Fighter Squadrons; and two foreign squadrons – the 21st and 425th Fighter Squadrons.

Since 1983, the base has graduated more than 16,000 F-16 pilots. With 138 aircraft currently assigned, Luke graduates more than 400 F-16 pilots each year, flying more than 24,000 sorties. Pilots graduating Luke F-16 training enter the combat Air Forces ready to employ the skills they learned in combat zones worldwide.

Courtesy of 56th Fighter Wing Public Affairs




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Staff Sgt. 
TIMOTHY BOYER

Luke plays role in saving species

Staff Sgt.TIMOTHY BOYER A team of wildlife specialists prepare a Sonoran pronghorn for release into the wild at the Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge in Ajo. Sixty-nine pronghorn were captured this year. Of those, more tha...
 
 

News Briefs December 19, 2014

Road closure Litchfield Road at Northern Parkway is closed daily 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. through Sunday to paint the bridge overpass, weather permitting. Northern Parkway will remain open. Reems Road and Dysart Road are alternate routes. For more information, call MCDOT at 480-350-9288. MLK luncheon There will be a Martin Luther King Jr. luncheon...
 
 
Courtesy photo

D-models return to flight after longeron repair

Staff Sgt. Luther Mitchell Jr. An F-16D Fighting Falcon undergoes repairs to the longeron due to cracks. This is one of the last aircraft to be repaired.   Air Force officials removed 82 two-seat F-16D Fighting Falcons fro...
 

 

Holiday services

Holiday hours Commissary Open 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Christmas Eve and closed Christmas Day Exchange Closed Christmas Day Chapel 623-856-6211 Luke Air Force Base Community Chapel Saturday: Catholic Children’s Christmas program will be held at 6:15 p.m. Sunday: Protestant Contemporary Gospel service will be held at 10 a.m. Wednesday: Catholic Christmas Family Mass will be...
 
 

Decking the halls …

Staff Sgt. Timothy Boyer Andrea Mathis, 56th Force Support Squadron Fighter Country Inn accounting clerk, decorates a Christmas tree Dec. 4 in the lobby at the Fighter Country Inn at Luke Air Force Base. Base lodging is available to active-duty service members, retirees and dependents on a space-available basis. For more information, call 623-856-3941.
 
 

News Briefs December 12, 2014

Kachina Gate closure The Kachina Gate will be closed to inbound traffic through Dec. 19 for gas valve repair. Outbound traffic will not be affected. For more information, call 623-856-7051. Tax season volunteers The 2015 tax center is looking for one volunteer to serve as site coordinator and volunteers to serve during the 2015 tax...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin