General Dynamics YF-16B "Fighting Falcon"

The F-16B “Fighting Falcon” is the two-seat version of the highly-maneuverable F-16A, designed and built by General Dynamics (now Lockheed-Martin). With the F-15 “Eagle” fulfilling the US Air Force’s need for an air superiority fighter, the F-16 became a multi-role fighter aircraft with even more responsibilities. Originally designed as a lightweight fighter aircraft based on lessons learned during the Vietnam War, the F-16 excelled in many roles including close air support to troops on the ground and suppressing enemy surface-to-air missiles.  

Did you know?

In 1977, US arms policy dictated that manufacturers only export aircraft less capable than those used by US forces. In an attempt to meet export requirements and sell to foreign air forces, General Dynamics put a less powerful General Electric J-79 engine in the F-16 and added to its overall weight. Exports for the slower, heavier F-16/79 never materialized and the policy soon changed.

Most pilots and crews refer to the F-16 as the “Viper”. Not only did it resemble a viper snake, but it resembled the Colonial Viper Starfighter on the popular sci-fi TV series, Battlestar Galactica. 

About our Aircraft

Delivered as YF-16B, 75-0752, this aircraft became one of the testbeds for the General Electric J-79 engine. Later restored to its original engine configuration, Lockheed-Martin utilized 75-0752 as a private-venture testbed (Technology Demonstrator) for close air support and night/bad weather attack systems. Manufactured in Fort Worth, Texas, this aircraft has a rich Texas history. It is on loan from the National Museum of the US Air Force in Ohio. 
F-16B Outside Museum
F-16B in 2006
F-16B in Museum's Main Gallery in 2006
F-16B in 1983
Image Credit: F-16/79 75-0752 by Keith C. Svendsen, 1983