The U.S. State Department has approved the upgrade of 23 Royal Moroccan Air Force (RMAF) F-16 Block 52+ to the F‑16V configuration for an estimated cost of $985.2 million.
The sale will be conducted through the U.S. Foreign Military Sale (FMS) route. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale om March 22, 2019.
Morocco’s requested buy includes twenty-six (26) APG-83 Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) Radars (includes 3 spares), twenty-six (26) Modular Mission Computers (includes 3 spares), twenty-six (26) Link-16 Multifunctional Information Distribution System – JTRS (MIDS-JTRS) with TACAN and ESHI Terminals (includes 3 spares), twenty-six (26) LN260 Embedded Global Navigation Systems (EGI) (includes 3 spares), twenty-six (26) Joint Helmet Mounted Cueing Systems II (includes 3 spares), twenty-six (26) Improved Programmable Display Generators (iPDG) (includes 3 spares), fifty (50) LAU-129 Multi-Purpose Launchers; and twenty-six (26) AN/AAQ-33 Sniper Pods. Also included are twenty-six (26) AN/ALQ‑213 EW Management Systems; twenty-six (26) Advanced Identification Friend/Foe; Joint Mission Planning System; twenty-six (26) AN/ALQ‑211 AIDEWS; six (6) DB-110 Advanced Reconnaissance Systems; secure communications, cryptographic precision navigation equipment; spares and repair parts; support equipment; personnel training and training equipment; publications and technical documentation; support and test equipment; simulators; integration and test; U.S. Government and contractor engineering, technical and logistical support services; and other related elements of logistics and program support.
The prime contractor will be Lockheed Corporation, Bethesda, Maryland.
The F-16V (Viper) is the latest and most advanced variant of the Lockheed Martin F-16 Fighting Falcon fighter aircraft.
The core of the F-16V configuration is an Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar – the Northrop Grumman AN/APG-83 Scalable Agile Beam Radar (SABR), a modern commercial off-the-shelf (COTS)-based avionics subsystem, a large-format, high-resolution display; and a high-volume, high-speed data bus.
Operational capabilities are enhanced through a Link-16 Theater Data Link, Sniper Advanced Targeting Pod, advanced weapons, precision GPS navigation, and the Automatic Ground Collision Avoidance System (Auto GCAS).
Lockheed Martin successfully completed the maiden flight of the F-16V on October 16, 2015, marking the first time an F-16 had flown with Northrop Grumman’s advanced APG-83 AESA radar. The new radar delivers a quantum leap in capability for the venerable F-16.
With more than 4,550 F-16s delivered to date, the F-16V is a natural step in the evolution of one of the world’s most successful 4th Generation fighter.