BAE Hawk 100 (early): Britain's Bird of Prey (i)

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Introduction: The BAE Hawk was a highly reliable trainer that served the RAF and many airforces around the world quite well, combining great reliability, with ease of maintenance, cost effectiveness and good performance characteristics. It was due to these reasons why it became such a sought after aircraft. However, by the 1980’s, it became clear that it was necessary to upgrade the aircraft in order to keep it as up to date as possible. This eventually led to the Hawk 100.

Description: The Hawk 100 retained the Hawk’s ability to act as a dual purpose strike-trainer. One of the most noticeable difference is the focus on weapons carriage, with more weapons being cleared for use on the aircraft, with the addition of two wingtip rails to launch missiles. This increased the total number of hardpoints from five (including the centreline), up to seven, freeing up two pylons for alternative use, whilst still being able to carry IR missiles for self-defence. The Hawk 100 retains the ability to mount either a fuel tank or an ADEN cannon pod, as mounted to the Hawk T.1As and Mk.50s/60s. The weapons fitted were dependent on the customers requirements, however, on early Mk.100s, the overall weapons carriage was similar to previous versions of the Hawk, being able to carry a wide variety of rockets and bombs. However, photographical evidence suggests that Hawk 100 ZJ100 did fly with an AGM-65 Maverick underneath the inner port hardpoint. Whether it was fired or not is uncertain, however, the aircraft was cleared to carry a wide variety of ordinance, with the final weapons fit depending on what the customer wanted, as previously mentioned, these photos having likely been taken during a flight trial with the weapon. It is possible that the Hawk 100 can carry up to four Mavericks on the underwing pylons, as the hardpoints are stressed for up to at least 500lb. The feature which stands out the most however is the lengthened nose, which houses a laser ranger and marked target seeker (LRMTS), which allowed the aircraft to calculate the range to a target and lock onto a target from third part lasing, either from the surface or from the air.

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Changes were also made in the cockpit, with the addition of multifunction CRT displays, a new heads-up-display and added HOTAS capability. The old Adour Mk.681 engine was replaced by a more powerful Adour Mk.871. The tail was modified with RWR, facing in both in the frontward and rearward facing directions. These were connected to the MIL STD 1553B digital databus, which integrates together: the SKN 2416 INS, the HUD, provisions for ECM, a modern air data sensor, an optical laser-ranging device and a new and improved weapons management system. The Hawk 100 also featured the modified wing from the Hawk 200, with a fixed leading-edge droop to improve lift and manoeuvrability at speeds between Mach 0.3 and 0.7. In addition, side-mounted horizontal root tail fins (SMURFs) were added to the rear fuselage, which gave the ability to maintain and restore tailplane authority at high angles of attack. In 1987, the aerodynamic prototype flew, with ZA101/G-HAWK being used for this. The company demonstrator for the type was ZJ100, which first flew in 1992 and was demonstrated at multiple airshows. ZJ100 also likely took part in validation trials for the various weapons offered for use on the Hawk. The Hawk 100 was sold to the UK, Canada, Australia, South Africa and Malaysia, amongst others, providing flight training of the utmost advanced quality.

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Performance:

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Conclusion: I believe that this aircraft would make for a good ground attack aircraft for the UK, filling a gap which should have been filled by the Hunter Mk.58. While there are other possible options for the tech tree, I think that this would make for a good candidate. I have split the Hawk 100 into an early and late modification, as there is a wide range of weaponry for which the aircraft was cleared, some if it quite powerful, making it harder to balance. I think that doing this would allow Gaijin to fill in more gaps in the UK tree and provide for more CAS options.

Sources:

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World Air Power Journal Volume 2, Summer 1990
“Observers Aircraft 1988/89 Edition” by William Green
British Aerospace Hawk 102D, ZJ100 / 312359, BAE Systems : ABPic
https://www.airforce-technology.com/projects/hawk/

BAe Hawk - BCAR.org.uk

BAE Systems Hawk Trainer and Light Attack Aircraft | MilitaryToday.com

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+1, Britain could really use some light attack/ trainer jets in game especially the hawk

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