BAE Systems to convert F-4 Phantoms into full-scale target drones for U.S. Air Force

MOJAVE, Calif., 13 April 2007. BAE Systems has received a $26.5 million contract to convert 20 F-4 Phantom fighter jets to full-scale aerial targets for the U.S. Air Force. The converted aircraft, designated QF-4s, provide the Air Force with full-size, remotely controlled aircraft that enable aircrews to train in highly realistic air combat maneuvering, including live weapons launch.

Apr 13th, 2007

MOJAVE, Calif., 13 April 2007.BAE Systems has received a $26.5 million contract to convert 20 F-4 Phantom fighter jets to full-scale aerial targets for the U.S. Air Force.

The converted aircraft, designated QF-4s, provide the Air Force with full-size, remotely controlled aircraft that enable aircrews to train in highly realistic air combat maneuvering, including live weapons launch.

BAE Systems will perform the modification work on 16 aircraft for the Air Force and four aircraft for the Navy at its facility in Mojave, Calif. Production will be completed by July 2009.

"This award is the third of five options exercised under an Air Force contract signed in 1992 and in effect until 2013," explains Mike Dismukes, acting vice president and general manager of Flight Systems for BAE Systems in Mojave.

To date, BAE Systems has converted 217 F-4s to the QF-4 configuration.

BAE Systems will deliver the aircraft to Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla. The drones will be used in development of new weapons systems and to ensure that current U.S. combat systems remain capable of neutralizing enemy aircraft.

The contracting office is the 691st Armament Systems Squadron at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla.

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