Aircraft Walk-Around : F-16A Walk-Around & Cockpit
The Força Aérea Portuguesa (Portuguese Air Force) brought this preserved F-16A Fighting Falcon to the island of San Miguel in the Azores for the 56th anniversary of the air force in June 2008. Filipe André Vales Chaves contributed these walk-around and cockpit photos.
To allow retirement of its ageing fleet of A-7P Corsair IIs, back in 1996 Portugal opted to expand its 20-strong F-16A/B Block 15OCU fleet procured under foreign military sales contract dubbed Peace Atlantis I. The contract for Peace Atlantis II was signed in late 1998: Portugal received 25 surplus ex-USAF F-16A/Bs of which 20 airframes were entered into the Mid-Life Update program to join the fleet and replace the A-7P, leaving five F-16As as a source for spares.
The aircraft depicted here is one of the latter airframes: F-16A Block 15K serial 82-0936. It was never in operational service with the Portuguese Air Force. This aircraft was not upgraded, but preserved for expositions and given FAP serial '15100'. Some of the details visible in the photos are therefore different than on operational FAP F-16 Block 15 OCU / MLU fleet.
Photos by Filipe André Vales Chaves