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The General Dynamics F-16 Fighting Falcon is a single-engine multirole fighter aircraft originally developed by General Dynamics

Lockheed F-16 Fighting Falcon

The General Dynamics F-16 Fighting Falcon is a single-engine multirole fighter aircraft originally developed by General Dynamics for the United States Air Force (USAF). Designed as an air superiority day fighter, it evolved into a successful all-weather multirole aircraft. Over 4,600 aircraft have been built since production was approved in 1976.[4] Although no longer being purchased by the U.S. Air Force, improved versions are being built for export customers.[5] In 1993, General Dynamics sold its aircraft manufacturing business to the Lockheed Corporation,[6] which in turn became part of Lockheed Martin after a 1995 merger with Martin Marietta.[


The F-16 is a single-engine, highly maneuverable, supersonic, multi-role tactical fighter aircraft. It is much smaller and lighter than its predecessors, but uses advanced aerodynamics and avionics, including the first use of a relaxed static stability/fly-by-wire (RSS/FBW) flight control system, to achieve enhanced maneuver performance. Highly agile, the F-16 was the first fighter aircraft purpose-built to pull 9-g maneuvers and can reach a maximum speed of over Mach 2. Innovations include a frameless bubble canopy for better visibility, a side-mounted control stick, and a reclined seat to reduce g-force effects on the pilot. It is armed with an internal M61 Vulcan cannon in the left wing root and has multiple locations for mounting various missiles, bombs and pods. It has a thrust-to-weight ratio greater than one, providing power to climb and vertical acceleration

Lockheed Transport


RoleMultirole fighterair superiority fighter
National originUnited States
ManufacturerGeneral Dynamics (1974-1993)
Lockheed Martin (1993-present)
First flight20 January 1974; 47 years ago (unplanned)
2 February 1974; 47 years ago (official)
Introduction17 August 1978; 42 years ago
StatusIn service
Primary usersUnited States Air Force
25 other users (see operators page)
Produced1973–2017, 2019–present
Number built4,604 (June 2018)
VariantsGeneral Dynamics F-16 VISTA
Developed intoVought Model 1600
General Dynamics F-16XL
Mitsubishi F-2


Experiences in the Vietnam War revealed the need for air superiority fighters and better air-to-air training for fighter pilots.[12] Based on his experiences in the Korean War and as a fighter tactics instructor in the early 1960s, Colonel John Boyd with mathematician Thomas Christie developed the energy–maneuverability theory to model a fighter aircraft’s performance in combat. Boyd’s work called for a small, lightweight aircraft that could maneuver with the minimum possible energy loss and which also incorporated an increased thrust-to-weight ratio.[13][14] In the late 1960s, Boyd gathered a group of like-minded innovators who became known as the Fighter Mafia, and in 1969, they secured Department of Defense funding for General Dynamics and Northrop to study design concepts based on the theory

Specifications (F-16C) Data from The Great Book of Modern Warplanes,

General characteristics

  • Length: 49 ft 5 in (15.06 m)
  • Wingspan: 32 ft 8 in (9.96 m)
  • Height: 16 ft (4.9 m)
  • Wing area: 300 sq ft (28 m2)
  • Airfoil: NACA 64A204[327]
  • Empty weight: 18,900 lb (8,573 kg)
  • Gross weight: 26,500 lb (12,020 kg)
  • Max takeoff weight: 42,300 lb (19,187 kg)
  • Fuel capacity: 7,000 pounds (3,200 kg) internals[64]
  • Powerplant: 1 × General Electric F110-GE-129 afterburning turbofan (for Block 50 version), 17,155 lbf (76.31 kN) thrust dry, 29,500 lbf (131 kN) with afterburner
  • Powerplant: 1 × Pratt & Whitney F100-PW-229 afterburning turbofan (for Block 52 version), 17,800 lbf (79 kN) thrust dry, 29,560 lbf (131.5 kN) with afterburner


  • Maximum speed: Mach 2.05 1,145 kn (1,318 mph; 2,121 km/h) at 40,000 feet, clean[71]
    • Mach 1.2, 800 kn (921 mph; 1,482 km/h) at sea level[71]
  • Combat range: 295 nmi (339 mi, 546 km) on a hi-lo-hi mission with 4 × 1,000 lb (454 kg) bombs
  • Ferry range: 2,277 nmi (2,620 mi, 4,217 km) with drop tanks
  • Service ceiling: 50,000[328][329] ft (15,000 m) plus
  • g limits: +9.0
  • Rate of climb: 50,000[326] ft/min (250 m/s)
  • Wing loading: 88.3 lb/sq ft (431 kg/m2)
  • Thrust/weight: 1.095 (1.24 with loaded weight & 50% internal fuel)[