As military budgets continue to be tightened it is rare to see a brand new combat aircraft flying at an air show these days. Aviation Nation 2016 bucked that trend with the presence of the USAF Lockheed Martin F-35A Lightning II Heritage Flight Team from Luke AFB. The F-35A Joint Strike Fighter officially entered USAF operational service in… Read More Aviation Nation 2016: USAF F-35A Lightning II – Welcome to the Fifth Generation
The sight and sound of a USAF Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor air dominance fighter is something special to see and hear (air superiority is too old school for this Fifth Generation fighter). The noise, the speed, the maneuverability is spectacular and the F-22 Demonstration Team performance as Aviation Nation 2016 was no exception!
How is this for a lineup of classic combat aircraft from the Cold War through to the latest technology of today? Side by side late on the first day of Aviation Nation 2016 we have a 1960’s era design in the USAF McDonnell Douglas QF-4 Phantom II manned aerial target sitting alongside 1990’s technology in the form of US… Read More Aviation Nation 2016: Fighter Aircraft Progression from the 1960’s to Today
The flying program at Aviation Nation 2016 included an impressive fire bombing demonstration by the big 10 Tanker Air Carrier McDonnell Douglas DC-10 and its Rockwell OV-10 Bronco spotting aircraft (a magnificent looking warbird in USMC markings). The DC-10 is one of the largest fire fighting aircraft in the world and you can imagine what a difference its… Read More Aviation Nation 2016: 10 Tanker Air Carrier DC-10 Fire Bomber
I spent most of my time at Aviation Nation 2016 at Nellis Air Force Base along the taxiway for the aircraft involved in the flying displays. The variations in the military pilots waves and hand gestures to the crowd became a fun sideline to the air show, especially those of the 6 USAF Thunderbirds pilots. Some of the pilots… Read More Aviation Nation 2016: The Pilots Wave
Nellis Air Force Base is home to the mighty USAF Thunderbirds demonstration team and they rounded off the flying displays each day of Aviation Nation 2016 (November 12th and 13th) in stunning fashion. The red, white and blue, six ship General Dynamics F-16 Fighting Falcon (originally 5 x F-16C and 1 x F-16B two-seater but they swapped out the B for… Read More Aviation Nation 2016: USAF Thunderbirds
Aviation Nation 2016 celebrated “75 Years of Airpower” at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada. In addition to all the modern flying tech of today (please see my previous post) the Nellis Heritage Parade component of the air show included various warbirds from World War Two and the Korean War era, accompanied with plenty of pyrotechnics!… Read More Aviation Nation 2016: 75 Years of Airpower – Part IV