McDonell Douglas F-4N Phantom II

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McDonell Douglas F-4N Phantom II

Historical overview

The F-4 Phantom is a two-seat, twin engine, all-weather supersonic jet, serving as an interceptor and as a fighter bomber. It entered service initially in the US Navy, later being adopted by the Marine Corps and the US Air Force. It is the most produced american supersonic aircraft in history, with over 5,000 aircraft built from 1958 to 1979.

The particular model being suggested is a less known variant, the F-4N. They began as F-4Bs, of which many were over ten years old and were showing signs of fatigue, and so the Bee Line program was carried out, in which 228 F-4Bs were refurbished and modernized into the F-4N, which first flew in June of 1972.

The aircraft which were selected for conversion were sent to NAS North Island, California. They were thoroughly inspected and stripped down, and then rebuilt using new parts. The aircraft was overall strengthened to increase service life, and it was completely rewired. This overhaul made some of the old F-4B airframes effective live extend well into the 1980s.

The F-4N had a relatively short life as an active duty aircraft with the Navy, as it was mostly replaced by the F-14 Tomcat, but VF-154 flew F-4Ns until 1983. The first F-4Ns joined the fleet in February 1973, being too late to participate in the Vietnam war, and the last Navy F-4N was retired from VF-201 in 1984, and the last Marine Corps F-4N was retired from VFMA-134 in 1985.

Main features

  • Pratt & Whitney J79-GE-8 turbojet engines, which were fitted with smoke abatement equipment.
  • Helmet sight VTAS (Visual Target Acquisition System), as seen in the F-4J/S and SEAM (Sidewinder Expanded Acquisition Mode), which enables slaving the seeker to the radar.
  • Slotted stabilator which helped remedy
  • AN/APQ-72 radar, which was retained from the F-4B
  • AN/ALR-45 and ALR-50 Radar Warning Receiver
  • AN/APX-76 IFF
  • AN/ALE-29 countermeasure dispensers (the same one used in the F-4J and S)
  • AN/ALQ-120 ECM pod could be carried.
  • AN/ALQ-126 deceptive electronic countermeasures equipment (DECM). The long antenna fairings featured on the upper part of the intakes were a distinctive feature of the F-4N.
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Technical Data

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Engines

Two Pratt & Whitney J79-GE-8 axial flow, afterburning turbojet engines

  • Maximum power (each): 17,000 lbf
  • Military power (each): 10900 lbf
  • Normal power (each): 10300 lbf

Fuel and oil

  • Total usable fuel capacity: 1,986 gallons
  • Grade: JP-4 or JP-5
  • Oil: 5.15 gallons usable per engine

Aircraft dimensions

  • Length: 58 ft. 3 in.
  • Height: 16 ft. 3 in.
  • Wingspan: 38 ft. 5 in.
  • Wing area: 530 sq. ft.

Weights

  • Empty weight: 28,000 lb
  • Gross weight: 54,600 lb

Performance

  • Maximum speed: 1,485 mph at 48,000 ft.
  • Service ceiling: 62,000 ft.
  • Range: 2,300 miles

Weaponry

Guns

MK 4 Mod 0 gunpod

Air-to-air
IR missiles

  • AIM-9B Sidewinder
  • AIM-9C Sidewinder
  • AIM-9D Sidewinder
  • AIM-9G Sidewinder
  • AIM-9H Sidewinder

Semi-active radar homing missiles

  • AIM-7D Sparrow
  • AIM-7E Sparrow
  • AIM-7E-2 Sparrow
  • AIM-7F Sparrow

Air-to-ground

As for air-to-ground weaponry, they would be pretty much the same as the F-4J and F-4S, basic bombs and rockets.

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Pictures

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F-4N

Sources

  • NATOPS Flight Manual, Navy Model F-4B and F-4N Aircraft, NAVAIR 01-245FDB-1
  • Tactical Manual, Navy Model F-4B, F-4J and F-4N Aircraft (U), NAVAIR 01-245FDB-1T
  • Standard Aircraft Characteristics, Navy Model F-4B Aircraft, NAVAIR 00-110AF4-1
  • F-4 Phantom II in detail and scale, Part 3 by Bert Kinzey
  • Joe Baugher
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