F-4B with a Phoenix missile housed in centreline tank?

Lockon

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Was just doing some reading on F-4s and read that the US Navy was testing a F-4B that could carrie a Phoenix missile in a modified centreline fuel tank? ::)
Does any one have any more info on this? photos and drawings would also be welcome.
Came about with the F-111B getting the axe at the time.

Thanks
 

Lockon

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Well it comes from my hard drive! a few years ago I was given this disc or should I say about 21 of them with just heaps of info on them from the internet that some one had been putting together over the years.
So much to go over and this is when I found this!
I think from what I have read it came from a book called The Phantom Story? (any one got it)

Will keep looking on the disc.
 

Pioneer

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Great picture find Lockon!

If anyone knows the size of the Phantom II's centre line drop tank, they will appreciate the size of the Aim-54 Phoenix missile - especially when the Tomcat carried four on its centreline!

I have not read of it before - but could this Phantom II be used somehow in the trials of the Phoenix missile?

Thanks Lockon
Lets hope we can find more pics and drawings!

Regards
Pioneer
 

erod

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Learn something new everyday. Looking at the picture, I notice that the two forward missile hard points are equipped with sparrow missiles while the two rear hardpoints are empty. The dithering of the picture makes some of the details hard to read. I wish I could get the serial number of the aircraft as well as determining what the lettering says on the sparrow missile on the port side.
 

aim9xray

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The Sparrow in the left forward missile bay is, in fact, an EROS pod. EROS - "Eliminate Range ZerO System" was a McDonnell-developed Collision Avoidance system invented after the company suffered two dead and two injured in a mid-aid collision between two F-101Bs in 1960.

The system became operational in company use in October 1965 and generated over 10,000 collision warnings in the congested St. Louis airspace in the next three years. (It should be noted that F-4 deliveries peaked at somewhere around 60 aircraft a month in this timeframe - each aircraft would undergo three to six functional check flights before delivery. That does not include systems and developmental test flights.)

(Data from the F-4 Phantom Society's Smoke Trails magazine, Volume 17, Number 3.

The lettering reads: "EROS Collision Avoidance System". The pod, wire bundle, upper antenna and indicator were removed prior to final customer acceptance of the aircraft.

If I squint just right, the BuNo appears to be 149410 or 149418. Either number would cross to a Block 9 F-4B.
 

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I very much doubt that the F-4 was being considered as a platform since the Phoenix wasn't any good without the big Hughes radar. My guess is that it was a flight test to substantiate drag projections in McAir's VFX proposal of a drag reduction innovation involving a "blanket" that sucked down around a semi-submerged missile.
 

aim9xray

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Concur. Initial Phoenix missile flight test was accomplished by launch from NA-3A and F-111B aircraft only, usually operating from Hughes Culver City. Follow-on test was by launches from NA-3B and F-14A/B/D. There were some XAIM-54A ground launches too, but this was part of the missile airframe development effort.

An off the wall question - does anyone know the designation of the radar in the AIM-54? Or was it designated only as a subcomponent of the AIM-54?
 

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Lockon said:
Was just doing some reading on F-4s and read that the US Navy was testing a F-4B that could carrie a Phoenix missile in a modified centreline fuel tank? ::)
Does any one have any more info on this?

This was a series of tests conducted by McDonnell to demonstrate the Phoenix semi-submerged "Integrated Armament Fairing" for their Model 225 VFX entry (note the "VFX" on the tank). When the Phoenix missile was ejected, doors would close over the cavity left by the missile, leaving an unbroken surface.

Photos via Mark Nankivil...
 

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NMaude

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There were some XAIM-54A ground launches too, but this was part of the missile airframe development effort.
It's a pity a mobile Land Phoenix wasn't developed as it could've replaced the MIM-23 Hawk SAM.
 

Pioneer

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Thanks Orionblamblam, that makes a lot of sense.

Revisiting this post, I'm wonder, given the timeframe and the amount of F-4 Phantom II's in the USN's ORBAT, was the technology available for a data link like arrangement between the F-14 with its Hughes AN/AWG-9 radar and say a F-4 Phantom II carrying Aim-54's into an intercept (i.e. the Aim-54 carried by F-4's slaved to F-14's radar control)?
Lockon said:
Was just doing some reading on F-4s and read that the US Navy was testing a F-4B that could carrie a Phoenix missile in a modified centreline fuel tank? ::)
Does any one have any more info on this?

This was a series of tests conducted by McDonnell to demonstrate the Phoenix semi-submerged "Integrated Armament Fairing" for their Model 225 VFX entry (note the "VFX" on the tank). When the Phoenix missile was ejected, doors would close over the cavity left by the missile, leaving an unbroken surface.

Photos via Mark Nankivil...

Regards
Pioneer
 

Pioneer

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There were some XAIM-54A ground launches too, but this was part of the missile airframe development effort.
It's a pity a mobile Land Phoenix wasn't developed as it could've replaced the MIM-23 Hawk SAM.
Not that Hawk needed replacement, just polish until much later into CW.
Sorry GARGEAN, I have a strong tendency to believe the MIM-23 Hawk was relied upon for far too long IMO, but alas, I digress from the main topic.;)

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red admiral

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This was a series of tests conducted by McDonnell to demonstrate the Phoenix semi-submerged "Integrated Armament Fairing" for their Model 225 VFX entry (note the "VFX" on the tank). When the Phoenix missile was ejected, doors would close over the cavity left by the missile, leaving an unbroken surface.

I've just been through the VFX topic with no joy; are there any further descriptions or drawings for how this feature would have worked? I was struggling to see how there was room for internal doors in some of the structural arrangement pictures.

Thanks
 

overscan (PaulMM)

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This was a series of tests conducted by McDonnell to demonstrate the Phoenix semi-submerged "Integrated Armament Fairing" for their Model 225 VFX entry (note the "VFX" on the tank). When the Phoenix missile was ejected, doors would close over the cavity left by the missile, leaving an unbroken surface.

I've just been through the VFX topic with no joy; are there any further descriptions or drawings for how this feature would have worked? I was struggling to see how there was room for internal doors in some of the structural arrangement pictures.

Thanks
The Model 225A as submitted had recesses sized for Phoenix which were inflatable to seal nicely even if carrying a Sparrow or no missile.
 

Fluff

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This was a series of tests conducted by McDonnell to demonstrate the Phoenix semi-submerged "Integrated Armament Fairing" for their Model 225 VFX entry (note the "VFX" on the tank). When the Phoenix missile was ejected, doors would close over the cavity left by the missile, leaving an unbroken surface.

I've just been through the VFX topic with no joy; are there any further descriptions or drawings for how this feature would have worked? I was struggling to see how there was room for internal doors in some of the structural arrangement pictures.

Thanks
The Model 225A as submitted had recesses sized for Phoenix which were inflatable to seal nicely even if carrying a Sparrow or no missile.
Possible link to today, in terms of stealth carriage of larger weapons??
 

sferrin

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This was a series of tests conducted by McDonnell to demonstrate the Phoenix semi-submerged "Integrated Armament Fairing" for their Model 225 VFX entry (note the "VFX" on the tank). When the Phoenix missile was ejected, doors would close over the cavity left by the missile, leaving an unbroken surface.

I've just been through the VFX topic with no joy; are there any further descriptions or drawings for how this feature would have worked? I was struggling to see how there was room for internal doors in some of the structural arrangement pictures.

Thanks
The Model 225A as submitted had recesses sized for Phoenix which were inflatable to seal nicely even if carrying a Sparrow or no missile.
Possible link to today, in terms of stealth carriage of larger weapons??
Back then semi-recessed was for drag. Same with internal carriage. The F-22 wasn't the first. The F-101, F-102, F-106, XF-108, XF-103, YF-12 all had, or would have had, internal weapon carriage for drag reduction. With newer fighters it's RCS reduction that drives it.
 

sferrin

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