The Royal Netherlands Air Force four Lockheed Martin F-16 Fighting Falcons flew their last photo reconnaissance mission over Afghanistan this week. The conclusion of the RecceLite pod flights is part of the transfer of responsibility for the national security to the Afghan National Army and the resulting reduction of the forces of contribution nations to the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF).
The RNLAF Tactical Air Air Reconnaissance Center (TARC) has been operational in Afghanistan for almost four years and was mainly tasked in increasing intelligence and target information for planners and decission makers of the ISAF. The TARC mostly focused on finding improvised explosion devices, the ‘home-made’ road bombs. Photos made with the RecceLite were transfered in flight through a datalink to ground forces.
The Dutch F-16s that flew the RecceLite pod made more than 3 million images since September 2009. The Vipers made recce flights almost every day.
Source: Ministerie van Defensie (NL MoD)
- Volkel to become main Dutch airbase
- Blast to the past: Vipers back at Eindhoven
- Dutch sell 15 F-16s to Jordan