AirMiddle East

Jordan OKs Purchase of 12 Block 70 F-16s From Lockheed Martin

The Royal Jordanian Air Force has announced the purchase of 12 Block 70 F-16s from American aerospace giant Lockheed Martin.

The US State Department approved the sale in February last year, stating that the agreement could reach $4.21 billion.

It included communication systems, targeting pods, and munitions components such as guided missile tail kits.

According to a press release, the deal takes place within the framework of bolstering Jordan’s defense capabilities and military deterrence amid increasing security threats.

The F-16s would increase the combat readiness and interoperability of the Jordan air force with its American ally.

They would also “support joint efforts in combating terrorism and enhancing stability in the region.”

Aging Fleet Upgrade

The most advanced version of the F-16 aircraft, the Block 70 provides enhanced battlespace awareness to soldiers due to its high-resolution Center Pedestal Display.

Its technology provides critical tactical imagery to pilots, allowing them to take full advantage of radar and targeting pod data.

The aircraft also has an automatic ground collision avoidance system to prevent deadly crashes.

Additionally, the F-16 Block 70 features a more powerful mission computer, an infrared search-and-track system, and a high-performance engine.

Jordan expects the next-generation aircraft to modernize its aging fighter fleet, which consists of F-16s either donated by the US in the 1990s or procured second-hand.

The structural life of the Block 70 is 12,000 hours, more than twice that of other existing F-16 versions.

“That means a highly reliable, readily maintainable jet of at least 40 years of service life for most air forces, with no expected extended structural repairs throughout that entire lifetime,” Lockheed Martin states on its website.

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