The Northrop F-20 Tigershark was a privately financed light fighter, designed and built by Northrop. Its development began in 1975 as a further evolution of Northrop's F-5E Tiger II, featuring a new engine that greatly improved overall performance, and a modern avionics suite including a... MORE
The Northrop F-20 Tigershark was a privately financed light fighter, designed and built by Northrop. Its development began in 1975 as a further evolution of Northrop's F-5E Tiger II, featuring a new engine that greatly improved overall performance, and a modern avionics suite including a powerful and flexible radar. Compared with the F-5E, the F-20 was much faster, gained beyond-visual-range air-to-air capability, and had a full suite of air-to-ground modes capable of firing most U.S. weapons. With these improved capabilities, the F-20 became competitive with contemporary fighter designs such as the General Dynamics F-16 Fighting Falcon, but was much less expensive to purchase and operate. Much of the F-20's development was carried out under a US Department of Defense project called "FX". FX sought to develop fighters that would be capable in combat with the latest Soviet aircraft but, by excluding sensitive front-line technologies used by the United States Air Force, the FX could be safely sold to foreign nations without the risk of significant technological advancements falling into Soviet hands. FX was a product of the Carter administration's military export policies. Northrop had high hopes for the F-20 in the international market; however, policy changes following Ronald Reagan's election meant the F-20 had to compete for sales against aircraft like the F-16, the USAF's latest fighter design. The development program was eventually abandoned in 1986 after three prototypes had been built and a fourth partially completed. LESS
Saab JAS 39 Gripen and JA/AJ 37 Viggen, Swedish airfighters. The Saab JAS 39 "Gripen" (Griffin or "Gryphon") is a fighter aircraft manufactured by the Swedish aerospace company Saab. Gripen International acts as a prime contracting organisation and is responsible for marketing, selling and supporting the Gripen fighter around the world. The aircraft is in service with the Swedish Air Force, the Czech Republic Air Force and the Hungarian Air Force, and has been ordered by the South African Air Force. In October 2007 the Thai government decided to purchase the Gripen to replace the country's aging F-5 fleet. Development The Gripen is designed for performance, flexibility, effectiveness and survivability in air combat. The designation JAS stands for Jakt (Air-to-Air), Attack (Air-to-Surface), and Spaning (Reconnaissance), indicating that the Gripen is a multirole or swingrole aircraft that can fulfill each mission type. Gripen got its name in a public competition in 1982. The griffin is the heraldry on Saab's logo and suited the multirole characteristics of the aircraft. Furthermore, the griffin is the symbolic animal on the coat of arms of Östergötland, the province in which Saab AB is headquartered (Linköping). Sweden chose to develop the Gripen rather than purchase a variant of the F-16, F/A-18A/B, or the "F-5S" version of the Northrop F-20 Tigershark. In April 2007, Norway signed an agreement on a joint development programme of the aircraft regarding co-operation in ...
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