40 Years of Strong F-16 Partnership

 

 

 

    In a ceremony organised at Beauvechain airbase on Tuesday June 9th, 2015 representatives of the 6 participating countries celebrated the 40th anniversary of the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) as the base charter for the F-16 Multinational Fighter Program. The five founding nations (the sixth, Portugal, joined later in June 2000) Belgium, Denmark, the Netherlands, Norway and the United States together initially ordered some 998 F-16's. In the 1980's the European Participating Governments decided, based upon the success of the program to acquire 169 additional aircraft, known as the "Follow-on Buy".


   In November 1987, based on the next-generation F-16C and D models (Agile Falcon) developed for the USAF, the US Government offered the MNFP countries to participate and pursue the F-16 Mid-Life Update (MLU) to upgrade their Block 10 and Block 15 aircraft to near Block 50 capability. This MLU introduced a glass cockpit and a Modular Mission Computer largely expanding the effectiveness of this fabulous fighter.


   In the current very fast changing environment the F-16 MNFP partnership will have to deal with more than ever complex and demanding challenges and will consequently confirm its members are the core actors of the F-16 MNFP maintaining the highest possible standard for the F-16 platform.

Five of the 6 members of the F-16 Multinational Fighter Program delegated F-16's to the 40th anniversry ceremony organised at Beaauvechain airbase.

Belgian Air Force Lt Col Frank "Fozzy" Vandenbussche during his address

 

The Koninklijke Luchtmacht of the Netherlands delegated J-623 in clean configuration. (No fuel tanks nor armament).

The Danish F-16 delegation.

Norwegian Air Force Lockheed Martin F-16BM 689

 

 

The Portuguese Air Force delegated a formation of two aircraft led by Belgian exchange pilot and former F-16 demo-pilot Cdt.Mitch Beulen. One of these aircraft was Lockheed Martin F-16AM 15136 of Monte Real based Esq 201 Falcões (Falcons) which sported a special "Falcon" tail decoration. 

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© Daniel Brackx - (June 2015)

 

 

 

Last updated 07/11/11 10:59   Daniel Brackx

brackda@gmail.com