US Navy 051105-F-5480T-005 An F-14D Tomcat conducts a mission over the Persian Gulf-region. Navy F-14D conducts f1 2002-2003 : Passion PDF mission over the Persian Gulf-region in 2005. The Grumman F-14 Tomcat is an American supersonic, twin-engine, two-seat, twin-tail, variable-sweep wing fighter aircraft.
It was the first such American jet fighter with twin tails. The F-14 first flew on 21 December 1970 and made its first deployment in 1974 with the U. The F-14 served as the U. Iraq War, where they saw combat against Iraqi warplanes. The Tomcat was retired from the U.
The F-14 remains in service with the Iranian Air Force, having been exported to Iran in 1976. Beginning in the late 1950s, the U. Navy sought a long-range, high-endurance interceptor to defend its carrier battle groups against long-range anti-ship missiles launched from the jet bombers and submarines of the Soviet Union. Weight and performance issues plagued the U. Navy F-111B variant for TFX and would not be resolved to the Navy’s satisfaction.
The F-111 manufacturer General Dynamics partnered with Grumman on the Navy F-111B. American aircraft against agile MiG fighters over Vietnam. The Navy studied the need for VFAX, an additional fighter that was more agile than the F-4 Phantom for air-combat and ground-attack roles. VFX called for a tandem two-seat, twin-engined air-to-air fighter with a maximum speed of Mach 2. It would also have a built-in M61 Vulcan cannon and a secondary close air support role. Grumman was selected for the contract award in January 1969.
Upon winning the contract for the F-14, Grumman greatly expanded its Calverton, Long Island, New York facility for evaluating the aircraft. Much of the testing, including the first of many compressor stalls and multiple ejections, took place over Long Island Sound. Firing trials involved launches against simulated targets of various types, from cruise missiles to high-flying bombers. AIM-54 Phoenix missile testing from the F-14 began in April 1972.
Another unusual test was made on 22 November 1973, when six missiles were fired within 38 seconds at Mach 0. With time, the early versions of all the missiles were replaced by more advanced versions, especially with the move to full solid-state electronics that allowed better reliability, better ECCM and more space for the rocket engine. Approximately 65 F-14As and all F-14Ds were modified to carry the pod. Some of the F-14A aircraft underwent engine upgrades to the GE F110-400 in 1987. F-111B, the F-14 was still the heaviest and most expensive fighter of its time.
VFAX was revived in the 1970s as a lower cost solution to replacing the Navy and Marine Corps’s fleets of F-4s, and A-7s. GBU-24 Paveway III is also carried. In the 1990s, with the pending retirement of the A-6 Intruder, the F-14 air-to-ground program was resurrected. F-14 was cleared to use basic iron bombs in 1992.
However, the upgrades would have taken too long to implement to meet the gap, and were priced in the billions. Congress considered this too expensive for an interim solution. Pale gray jet aircraft flying over water towards right, perpendicular to the camera. Horizon located two-thirds down the photo.
VF-213 flying over Iraq on last Tomcat deployment with LANTIRN pod on starboard wing glove station and LGB underneath fuselage. The LANTIRN pod did not require changes to the F-14’s own system software, but the pod was designed to operate on a MIL-STD-1553B bus not present on the F-14A or B. Consequently, Martin Marietta specially developed an interface card for LANTIRN. The F-14’s fuselage and wings allow it to climb faster than the F-4, while the twin-tail arrangement offers better stability.