Tag Archives: Jordan

Jordan sells F-16s… and gains F-16s

Jordan is offering fifteen used but serviceable F-16A/B Midlife Update (MLU) models in a move that seems strange in the light of the pending arrival of… fifteen very similar F-16 MLU models previously operated by the Royal Netherlands Air Force (RNLAF). The Royal Jordanian Air Force (RJAF) aircraft are offered on the air force’s website.

The Jordanian offer comes complete with a list of the actual aircraft for sale. They are all jets that orginally flew with the US Air Force in the eighties an nineties and were delivered to Jordan under the Peace Falcon II contract from 2003 onwards. Prior to 2009, all were updated to MLU standard in Turkey.

Hours

Airframe hours range from 4,600 to 6,000 hours and some phase inspections were completed as late as December 2015 and even January 2016. The jets underwent the Falcon UP and Falcon STAR structural upgrades as well, extending projected service lifes to about 8,000 hours.

Habit

Jordan has a habit of purchasing used F-16s while at the same time selling aircraft of the same type. Pakistan received a batch of former RJAF F-16s, the first of which arrived in Pakistan in April 2014. In turn, disused Belgian and Dutch F-16s found their ways to Jordan before, some of which were used for Jordan’s contribution in the fight against so-called Islamic State in neighbouring Iraq and Syria.

It would be no surprise if Pakistan snatches up Jordan’s latest F-16 offer as well, although Islamabad also eyes a small batch of brand new and more advanced F-16C/D jets from Lockheed Martin.

The current Jordanian F-16 fleet is estimated to be around 64 aircraft-strong. The second batch of used Dutch aircraft should find its way to the Middle Eastern country soon. The aircraft are currently being prepared for transfer in the Netherlands.

© 2016 Airheadsfly.com editor Elmer van Hest
Featured image (top): A Jordanian F-16. (Image © Elmer van Hest)

Eight Black Hawks for Jordanian border security

Jordan on 3 March took delivery of the last of eight Sikorsky (Lockheed Martin) Black hawk medium transport helicopters. They are tools for the Royal Jordanian Air Force (RJAF) in securing Jordan’s borders against Daesh forces in neighbouring Syria and Iraq, both Jordan and US officials said during the handover ceremony at Marka airbase in Amman.

The US cofunded the helicopters and sees them as  vital assets against possible insurgents in Jordan. The country is host to Western military aircraft taking parting part in missions over Syria and Iraq.

The handover also marked six decades of relations between the US and Jordan. According to sources, eight more Black Hawks should arrive in 2017 against a cost of 200 million USD. Together, the helicopters operate as a Quick Reaction Force for border security.

© 2016 Airheadsfly.com editor Elmer van Hest
Featured image: Some of the Black Hawks at Marka airbase. (Image © RJAF)

 

Dutch F-16s cleared for Syria ops

The Dutch goverment on Friday formally approved F-16 operations against Daesh forces in Syria. Since October 2014, Royal Netherlands Air Force (RNLAF) jets are already involved in offensive flights over Iraq.

Until this week, one of two Dutch government parties was opposed to actions over Syria, saying there was no international mandate for military actions over the country. Recent terrorist attacks in Paris in Jakarta changed the party’s point of view however.

Four RNLAF F-16s operate from Jordan, with two more in reserve. Their participation is supposed to end later this year, with Belgian F-16s taking their place.

© 2016 Airheadsfly.com editor Elmer van Hest
Featured image: An F-16 pilot await his turn to refuel. (Image © Dennis Spronk)

French jets respond to Paris attacks

French Air Force fighter aircaft carried out strike mission over Raqqa in Syria on Sunday, the ministry of Defense in Paris reports. The air strikes are a clear response to the attacks that killed 132 people in the French capital on Friday.

Since September 2014 and under code name Operation Chammal, French Air Force military aircraft have participated in the allied campaign against Islamic State forces. Dassault Rafale multi role fighter aircraft and Mirage 2000D strike aircraft saw use before. Soon after Friday’s attacks in Paris, the French government stated it would ‘respond appropriately’.

On Sunday, the French jets dropped over twenty bombs on the Islamic State stronghold of Raqqa. The flights originated from airfields in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Jordan. The strike was carried out in cooperation with US forces.

© 2015 Airheadsfly.com editor Elmer van Hest
Featured image: A French Mirage 2000D takes off from a base in Jordan (Image © Ministère de la Défense)

Pilatus PC-9 for Royal Jordanian Air Force

The Royal Jordanian Air Force (RJAF) has signed a contract for the purchase of nine PC-9M training aircraft, Swiss company Pilatus announced on Monday 10 August. The order also includes a simulator, training equipment and a comprehensive logistics support package.

Keen to modernise its pilot training facilities, the RJAF has opted for the Pilatus PC-9M for basic and advanced pilot training. The order was only awarded after several years of hard negotiations, from which the PC-9M finally emerged as the winner. The RJAF now uses the Slingsby T-67 Firefly for basic flight training and the CASA C-101 jet trainer for advanced training. Both operate for Mafraq airbase, home of the RJAF King Hussein Air College.

Oscar J. Schwenk, Chairman of the Board of Directors at Pilatus, commented: “We are very pleased to welcome the Royal Jordanian Air Force as a new member of the Pilatus family. I am equally happy that Pilatus won the deal against several other international competitors and that, in the final round, the Royal Jordanian Air Force chose our PC-9 M over all other aircraft.”

Source: Pilatus
Featured image (top): A factory demonstrator PC-9 over the Swiss Alps. (Image © Pilatus Aircraft)