Lockheed Martin Offers India Enhanced F-16 Block 70 Multirole Combat Aircraft Dubbed “F-21”
A new fighter was unveiled by Lockheed Martin called the F-21. It’s intended for India and based on the F-16.
“The F-21 provides unmatched ‘Make in India’ opportunities and strengthens India’s path to an advanced airpower future,” said in the company.
“The new [F-21] designation highlights our commitment to delivering an advanced, scalable fighter aircraft to the Indian Air Force that also provides unrivaled industrial opportunities and accelerates closer India-US cooperation on advanced technologies,” he added.
The company will build the plane in collaboration with Tata Advanced Systems, the firm said.
“The F-21 is different, inside and out, Vivek Lall,” vice president of Strategy and Business Development for Lockheed Martin Aeronautics, said in a statement.
The Block 70 upgrades included an AESA (Active Electronically Scanned Array) radar, a modern commercial off-the-shelf (COTS)-based avionics subsystem, the AN/APX-126 Advanced IFF, the Joint Helmet Mounted Cueing System II, CFT (Conformal Fuel Tanks); and a high-volume, high-speed data bus as well as other baseline features such as a Link-16 Theater Data Link, Sniper Advanced Targeting Pod, advanced weapons, precision GPS navigation, and the Automatic Ground Collision Avoidance System (Auto GCAS).
One of the most interesting upgrades of the Block 70 to the baseline F-16s is the Northrop Grumman’s advanced APG-83 AESA radar, that enables greater detection and tracking ranges, multiple target track (20-plus target tracks), high-resolution Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) maps for all-environment precision strike, interleaved air-to-air and air-to-surface mode operations for improved situational awareness, operational effectiveness and survivability; and robust electronic protection for operations in dense radio frequency (RF) environments.
Based on the first animations and renderings appeared online, the F-21 will embed further modifications the most evident of those is the probe of the IFR (In Flight Refueling) system coming out from the right dorsal CFT:
Lockheed is competing with Boeing’s F/A-18, Saab’s Gripen, Dassault
Lockheed Martin is a renowned global security and aerospace company that employs approximately 1,05,000 people worldwide
It is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services.