It is not surprising that in a bid to simulate combat and to hone their skills further, the US Air Force from time to time flies simulated attacks against planes with similar capabilities of that of enemy planes. In the past the US Air Force has turned to the use of modified and unmanned F-4 Phantom IIs.
However it seems that as technology progresses, these Phantom IIs have begun to lose their edge and are no longer able to keep up with the US Air Force’s modern warplanes, which is why the USAF have recently turned to the use of F-16 Fighting Falcons. These warplanes are similarly modified and are unmanned, meaning that they are remotely controlled by someone on the ground.
US Air Force Will Now Train With Remote Controlled F-16s
The first batch of planes manufactured by Boeing have already been delivered to the USAF and it is expected that over time, Boeing will deliver a grand total of 126 Q-F16s that will ultimately replace the F-4 Phantom IIs that are currently in rotation. The Q-F16s will also be a stand-in for the MiG-29 Fulcrum and Sukhoi Su-27 Flanker which are a pair of fighter jets currently favored by Russia.
According to USAF Lt. Col. Ryan Inman in a statement made back in 2013, “It was a little different to see it without anyone in it, but it was a great flight all the way around. It’s a replication of current, real world situations and aircraft platforms they can shoot as a target. Now we have a 9G capable, highly sustainable aerial target.”
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