The Viper West Demonstration team flies the F-16 Fighting Falcon (nicknamed Viper by the pilots).
The F-16 is a relatively small, single engined, multi-role fighter aircraft. It is highly maneuverable and has proven itself in air-to-air combat and air-to-surface attack.
All active units fly the F-16C/D model, whose engine can generate 27,000 lbs of thrust, and is capable of Mach 2 at altitude. Here, the afterburner flames are nicely highlighted.
The F-16 has enjoyed considerable success in the export market, and is used by air forces in 25 nations.
For some reason, when I see this - I'm reminded of the Fantastic 4...
The F-16 demo covers a lot of ground at the SF Fleetweek air show. That translates to 'he's usually too small to make a good picture.' Well, he's small here, but the background is interesting!
Judicous use of the afterburner (AB) treats us to some wonderful jet engine music!
Being on the boat lets me get a little closer sometimes, and get some nice closeups without a monster zoom lens.
Here's the Heritage flight of the F-16 with the F-86.
Here they are seemingly crossing paths at the break.
Lots of nice passes with AB.
Love that LONG afterburner shock diamonds flame.
A great high speed pass, but he cuts out the AB right as he gets to my position!
That vapor forming over the wings is a sure sign he's moving fast though!
The F-86 Sabre jet is best known for its role in the Korean War, where it fought Soviet Mig-15s for air superiority.
Surprisingly, the F-16 looks to have a smaller wing span than the F-86. Always a joy to watch them fly!