Military Aviation

IRIAF HAS UPGRADED AN F-14 TOMCAT

IRIAF upgraded F-14 Tomcat

Iran says it has succeeded in upgrading a Grumman F-14 Tomcat and return it to service.

According Mehr News Agency the process to upgrade the F-14 fighter jet began in February 2017. The Tomcat undertook flight tests last month and has now joined Islamic Republic of Iran Air Force (IRIAF) F-14’s fleet, said Mohammad Jafar Tak, commander of Shahid Babaei Airbase.

The country has also overhauled a F-7 and PC-7.

The Fakour-90 air-to-air missile

Noteworthy as we have recently explained IRIAF F-14s can carry several types of air-to-air missiles.

In fact along with the M61A1 Vulan 20mm internal cannon, AIM-54 Phoenix radar-guided long-range air-to-air missile, AIM-7 Sparrow medium-range semi-active radar homing air-to-air missile and AIM-9 Sidewinder short-range air-to-air missile, Iranian Tomcats can be loaded also with the Fakour-90 air-to-air missile and MIM-23 Hawk surface-to-air-missile (SAM) used as air-to-air missile.

The U.S. Navy retired the iconic Tomcat on Sep. 22, 2006 and today the F-14 remains in in service with IRIAF.

In January 2007, U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) announced that sales of spare F-14 parts would be suspended over concerns of the parts ending up in Iran and in Jul. 2007 the remaining U.S. F-14s were shredded to ensure that any parts could not be acquired.

However in Oct. 2010 IRIAF commander stated that his country was overhauling its F-14s and mentioned that Iran-made radar system had been installed on the fighter.

Moreover in the summer of 2010, Iran requested that the U.S. deliver the 80th F-14 it had purchased in 1974, but delivery was denied after the Islamic Revolution.

Photo credit: Shahram Sharifi via Wikipedia

Dario Leone

Dario Leone is an aviation, defense and military writer. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviation Geek Club” one of the world’s most read military aviation blogs. His writing has appeared in The National Interest and other news media. He has reported from Europe and flown Super Puma and Cougar helicopters with the Swiss Air Force.

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