F-4B/N Air-to-Ground weapons

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Overview

Air-to-Ground combat operations are very demanding on the crew due to the nature of the modern battlefield. Terrain proximity, Surface-to-Air missiles, RADAR guided Anti-Aircraft Artillery and small arms fire add up to the load of even the most experienced crews. Thorough knowledge of the aircraft's offensive and defensive capabilities are required to ensure survival and successful mission outcome. The crew must carefully study the area of operations to be well acquainted with the terrain and have an understanding of available approach, engagement and disengagement routes. Position of nearby enemy air-defense sites and their capabilities should be known well. Finally, the mission schedule should be upheld as closely as the conditions allow. The crew should be aware of the time, place and names of other packages related to their mission.

The crew should also be proficient in the precise and safe delivery of their weapons. The pilot must constantly study the supplied charts and practice Air-to-Ground weapons delivery to minimize the risk for ownship damage and unwanted ground casualties among civilians or friendly troops. The procedures and checklists that follow describe how to deploy the various air-to-ground weapons, but only repeated practice will allow the crews to successfully complete their mission when they enter combat.

Release modes

  • RKT DISP: Used for deployment of rockets
  • SINGLE: Each press of the pickle switch releases a single weapon
  • PAIRS: Each press of the pickle switch releases a pair of weapons from symmetrically opposite stations
  • RIPPLE: Bombs are released continuously as long as pickle is held down
  • CLUSTER: Bombs are released continuously in pairs as long as pickle is held down

Bomb release and station jettison

  1. Optical Sight Unit
    • Gunsight: ON
    • Mil setting: As required
  2. AWW-1 Panel
    • Set to STBY and wait for 30 seconds
    • Set to READY and verify the red light on the panel illuminates
  3. Weapons control panel
    • CENTER STA switch: READY if bombs are to be deployed from the centerline station
    • LABS switch: move to DIRECT - right click on the switch
  4. Bomb control panel
    • Station stepping
      1. STA SEL knob: RKT DISP
      2. STEP RESET
      3. STA SEL knob: Rotate to desired release mode
    • ARM SWITCH:
      • NOSE & TAIL or NOSE to release armed weapons
      • SAFE to jettison
    • STA SEL knob: Rotate to desired stations
  5. PICKLE to fire

CAUTION: When rapidly pickling weapons there is a possibility that a weapon may not release and become "hung". In this case, reset station stepping and try releasing or jettisoning the weapon again. NOTE: Station stepping needs to be reset every time release mode is changed or when switching from an inboard to an outboard station.

Rockets

    • Gunsight: ON
    • Mil setting: 'As required
  1. Weapons control panel
    • CENTER STA switch: READY if rockets are to be deployed from the centerline station
    • LABS switch: move to DIRECT - right click on the switch
  2. Bomb control panel
    • Station stepping
      1. STA SEL knob: SINGLE
      2. STEP RESET
      3. STA SEL knob: RKT DISP
  3. To fire PICKLE AND HOLD

Gun pods

  • Bomb control panel
    • Gun switch: READY
    • Hold TRIGGER to fire

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Mil settings for weapons

To use the provided charts, you need to know:

  • the weapon release altitude above the target's elevation
  • the aircraft's dive angle
  • true airspeed on release

The steps to use the charts are:

  1. Find the chart for the true airspeed for which you wish to plan the weapons deployment
  2. Find your desired release altitude on the right
  3. Trace a horizontal line until it meets the desired dive angle line
  4. From that point, trace a vertical line down and read the mil setting

Click on the arrows on each image to move to the previous/next image

Mk.82 mil setting charts

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Mk.82 Snakeye mil setting charts

RETARDED RELEASE

UNRETARDED RELEASE

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Mk.83 mil setting charts

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LAU-10/A and LAU-33/A 5" Zuni rocket mil setting charts

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LAU-68 2.75" FFAR mil setting charts

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