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Largest Ever F-16 Modernization Program Enhances Aircraft

File photo: An F-16.
by Chris McGee
Aeronautical Systems Center Public Affairs
Wright-Patterson AFB OH (SPX) Mar 21, 2006
The largest ever F-16 modernization program continues to advance, making the aircraft a more lethal, survivable and network-centric weapon system in the Global War on Terrorism.

The F-16 Systems Group of Aeronautical Systems Center's Fighter-Attack Systems Wing here recently awarded an $84 million contract to Lockheed Martin to procure 91 Common Configuration Implementation Program (CCIP) kits to integrate into Block 40 and 42 F-16C and F-16D aircraft.

"CCIP is the centerpiece of our F-16 modernization plan, and it's delivering far-reaching benefits to our warfighters." U.S. Air Force Col. Scott Jansson

Begun in Sept. 2001, CCIP is a comprehensive $2 billion-plus upgrade effort designed to provide enhanced mission capabilities and a common avionics configuration to approximately 650 Block 40, 42, 50 and 52 Air Force and Air National Guard F-16s.

The modernization program will increase fleet supportability through greater hardware and software commonality.

"CCIP is the centerpiece of our F-16 modernization plan, and it's delivering far-reaching benefits to our warfighters," said U.S. Air Force Col. Scott Jansson, F-16 Systems Group commander.

"Not only does it significantly enhance the Viper's lethality and survivability, it also makes the F-16 more affordable to sustain because of the avionics hardware and software commonality across the combined 650-aircraft Block 40 and 50 fleet," he explained.

The program involves the installation of a new avionics suite and encompasses numerous components, including a new mission computer, color displays, an enhanced horizontal situation indicator, and an air-to-air interrogator for Block 50/52 aircraft allowing beyond line-of-site use of the AIM-120 Advanced Medium-Range Air- to-Air Missile.

Other key CCIP elements include a Link-16 capability with the Multifunctional Information Distribution System to increase pilot situational awareness and communication among coalition partner aircraft; the Joint Helmet Mounted Cueing System enabling first-look, first-shot capability and high over-the-shoulder engagement with the AIM-9X missile; and dual carriage capability of the High-Speed Anti-Radar Missile Targeting System and Advanced Targeting Pod.

Kit installation is unfolding in various phases, with the latest 91 scheduled for integration on Block 40/42 aircraft during Fiscal Year 2008. Presently, 245 out of 252 Block 50/52 F-16s have received the CCIP modification.

"The CCIP program reached a milestone in February with the delivery of the first F-16 Block 40/42 jets to Nellis Air Force Base, Nev.," said Maj. Reginald Festejo, CCIP program manager. "The upgrades are done at the depot at Hill Air Force Base, Utah. As the Block 50/52 CCIP upgrades are scheduled for completion in May, the depot will continue to ramp up deliveries of Block 40/42 jets to the field.

"This is the final phase of the CCIP upgrades, where approximately 400 Block 40/42 jets will be upgraded with completion scheduled for 2010."

F-16 units receiving CCIP installation are located in the continental United States and within Pacific Air Forces and U.S. Air Forces in Europe. The CCIP modifications are scheduled tightly around each unit's deployment cycles.

Currently, F-16 jets having already received the CCIP upgrade are supporting U.S. European Command as well as homeland security efforts as part of Operation Noble Eagle.

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