Meet the F-16 Block 70
The F-16 Block 70 is unlike any fighter jet seen before. The Block 70 is the newest and most advanced F-16 production configuration, combining numerous capability and structural upgrades.
The Block 70 builds on its thousands of predecessors and proven combat experience, while also bringing new technology to the forefront. With improved radar systems, advanced weapons capabilities and enhanced battlespace awareness, the aircraft advances its strong, combat-proven legacy and goes beyond – to meet needs for tomorrow.
This is the F-16 Block 70, the newest generation of Fighting Falcon.
Enhanced, Integrated Capabilities
The F-16 Block 70 combines capability upgrades, most notably the advanced Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar with a new avionics architecture, and structural upgrades to extend the structural life of the aircraft by more than 50 percent beyond that of previous production F-16 aircraft. F-16 Block 70 software takes advantage of technologies not available when earlier Block F-16s were developed and produced. Operational capabilities are enhanced through an advanced datalink, targeting pod and weapons; precision GPS navigation and the Automatic Ground Collision Avoidance System (Auto GCAS).
Advanced AESA Radar
Northrop Grumman’s advanced APG-83 AESA radar delivers greater situational awareness, flexibility and quicker all-weather targeting. The APG-83 provides pilots with unprecedented target area detail and digital map displays that can be tailored with slew and zoom features. The APG-83 provides F-16s with 5th Generation fighter radar capabilities by leveraging hardware and software commonality with F-22 and F-35 AESA radars.
Enhanced Battlespace Awareness
Another key feature of the F-16 Block 70 configuration is the new Center Pedestal Display (CPD), which provides critical tactical imagery to pilots on a high-resolution 6”x 8” screen. The high-resolution display allows pilots to take full advantage of AESA and targeting pod data. The new CPD enables color moving maps, larger and easier to manage air-to-air Situation Displays, zoom functionality with the ability to switch information among displays, and a digital display of Flight Instrument Data. The CPD is also compatible with the Night Vision Imaging System.
The Automatic Ground Collision Avoidance System (Auto GCAS) was purpose-built to prevent deadly crashes and has already saved the lives of seven pilots and six F-16s since the system entered service with the U.S. Air Force in late 2014. The Auto GCAS is designed to reduce incidents of what is known as controlled flight into terrain, or CFIT. According to U.S. Air Force statistics, CFIT incidents account for 26 percent of aircraft losses and a staggering 75 percent of all F-16 pilot fatalities.
The F-16 Auto GCAS system is currently being integrated into the U.S. Air Force’s F-16 fleet and the Air Force and Lockheed Martin plan to develop similar systems for the F-22 and F-35. Current plans call for fielding an Auto GCAS on the F-35 by 2019. The F-35 Joint Program Office estimates the Auto GCAS will prevent more than 26 ground collisions during the service of the F-35 fleet.