Embraer Delivers Upgraded F-5 Fighter to Brazilian Air Force
On March 7, Embraer redelivered the final aircraft in the first batch of Brazilian Air Force F-5 fighters.
A total of 46 will be upgraded to the F-5EM and F-5FM standard to keep them active until 2020.
The upgrade program has faced long delays, as it was approved by the Brazilian Senate 12 years ago, in January 2001. The first F-5 for the program was transferred to Embraer in February 2001 and redelivered after a full upgrade in September 2005.
The upgrade includes the Grifo F-BR radar, hands-on throttle-and-stick (HOTAS) cockpit controls, three multifunction displays, additional weapons capabilities, a radar warning receiver, and an electronics countermeasures suite. Those F-5s lacking air-to-air refueling probes are being fitted with them.
In April 2011, Brazil decided to expand the scope of the F-5M upgrade program to include 11 F-5s (eight Es and three Fs) that it had purchased from Jordan.
A contract with SELEX Galileo worth $85 million was signed a few months later, in July, for an additional 11 Grifo F/BR radars. Work on the 11 aircraft began in October 2012 and will continue through 2013.
Source: NEWTOWN, Conn. EmbraerNews – 8 February 2013
Photo: The Brazilian Air Force F-5M Fighter Aircraft (Photo by Biasus)