In 1963, when the US Navy sought to create a successor to the A-4 Skyhawk, the cost and speed of aircraft production were major concerns.
Chance Vought ultimately developed and produced a derivative of the F-8 Crusader, the subsonic A-7 Corsair II for a cost of about one million dollars.
The A-7 possessed unheard target accuracy, low loses, long range and was popular with pilots and mechanics. After five million flight hours the A-7 became the US militaries most cost effective aerial weapon.
The A-7 was one of the first combat aircraft to use the turbofan engine, Heads Up Display (HUD) and Doppler bound inertial navigation system with Projected Map Display System (PMDS) that are standard equipment on many modern jets.
The turbofan engine, produced for the F-111, provided a dramatic increase in fuel-efficiency using six times less fuel than the F-100 at equal thrust.
The A-7’s integrated radar and navigation system fed the digital weapons computer producing a precise drop from a greater distance which improved the survivability of the aircraft.
The early A-7’s arrived in Vietnam in 1967, the later D model flew 12,938 sorties with only four losses, less than any US fighter in Vietnam.
|DISPLAY STATUS||COUNTRY OF ORIGIN||CURRENT LOCATION|
|PURPOSE & TYPE||MATERIALS||ERA & DATE RANGE|
1945 – 1975
|MFG: Chance Vought
First Produced: 1968
Number Built: 1,569 total; 169 B models
Armament: (2) Mk 12 20mm cannon, (2) AIM-9 Sidewinders, 10,000 lbs of ordnance
Wing Area: 375 sq ft
Empty Weight: 19,111 lbs
Gross Weight: 42,000 lbs
Powerplant: (1) P&W TF30-P-408
Cruise Speed: 535 mph
Maximum Speed: 579 mph
Range: 3,050 miles with tanks
|Delivered: December 18, 1968
May 1971-March 1973 – VA-215 ABD USS Oriskany combat tour