Taiwan's first 42 upgraded F-16Vs in service at Chiayi Air Base

by J Michael Cole

The first 42 Republic of China Air Force (RoCAF) F-16 multirole fighter aircraft recently upgraded to the latest F-16V standard have entered service with the 4th Tactical Fighter Wing (TFW) at Chiayi Air Base in central Taiwan.

A Ministry of National Defence (MND) spokesperson told Janes on 19 May that the aircraft entered service at the end of March, shortly after Chief of Staff of Air Force Command Lieutenant General Huang Chih-wei announced that Taiwan had completed the first tranch of upgrades for the RoCAF’s fleet of 141 F-16A/B/C/D Fighting Falcon fighters under the Peace Phoenix Rising programme.

The F-16V shares the same outer mould-line of the standard Fighting Falcon, but features several advanced systems, including an active electronically scanned array radar. (Lockheed Martin)

The F-16V shares the same outer mould-line of the standard Fighting Falcon, but features several advanced systems, including an active electronically scanned array radar. (Lockheed Martin)

The 4th TFW (also known as 455th) is comprised of three Tactical Fighter Groups: 21, 22, and 23. However, the MND would not confirm whether any of the three groups are composed solely of F-16Vs.

The USD3.7 billion upgrade programme, which was launched in 2016, is being carried out by Taiwan’s Aerospace Industrial Development Corporation (AIDC) in collaboration with Lockheed Martin, and is slated for completion by the end of 2023.

Facing China on Taiwan’s western coast, Chiayi Air Base has been at the heart of RoCAF activities over the past year amid a sharp increase in incursions by Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) aircraft into Taiwan’s southwestern air-defence identification zone (ADIZ).

https://www.janes.com/defence-news/news-detail/taiwans-first-42-upgraded-f-16vs-in-service-at-chiayi-air-base

The first 42 Republic of China Air Force (RoCAF) F-16 multirole fighter aircraft recently upgraded t...

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