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Ling-Temco-Vought A-7 Corsair II

The LTV A-7 Corsair II is an American carrier-capable subsonic light attack aircraft designed and manufactured by Ling-Temco-Vought (LTV).

The A-7 was developed during the early 1960s as replacement for the Douglas A-4 Skyhawk.

Its design was derived from the Vought F-8 Crusader; in comparison with the F-8, the A-7 is both smaller and restricted to subsonic speeds, its airframe being simpler and cheaper to produce.

Following a competitive bid by Vought in response to the United States Navy’s (USN) VAL (Heavier-than-air, Attack, Light) requirement, an initial contract for the type was issued on 8 February 1964.

Development was rapid, first flying on 26 September 1965 and entering squadron service with the USN on 1 February 1967; by the end of that year, A-7s were being deployed overseas for the Vietnam War.

Initially adopted by USN, the A-7 proved attractive to other services, soon being adopted by the United States Air Force (USAF) and the Air National Guard (ANG) to replace their aging Douglas A-1 Skyraider and North American F-100 Super Sabre fleets.

Improved models of the A-7 would be developed, typically adopting more powerful engines and increasingly capable avionics.

American A-7s would be used in various major conflicts, including the Invasion of Grenada, Operation El Dorado Canyon, and the Gulf War.

The type was also used to support the development of the Lockheed F-117 Nighthawk.

The A-7 was also exported to Greece in the 1970s and to Portugal in the late 1980s.

The USAF and USN opted to retire their remaining examples of the type in 1991, followed by the ANG in 1993 and the Portuguese Air Force in 1999.

The A-7 was largely replaced by newer generation fighters such as the General Dynamics F-16 Fighting Falcon and the McDonnell Douglas F/A-18 Hornet.

The final operator, the Hellenic Air Force, withdrew the last A-7s during 2014.



First production version.

Early USN Corsair IIs had two 20 mm Colt Mk 12 cannons with 250 rounds per gun.

Maximum ordnance, carried primarily on the wing pylons, was theoretically 15,000 lb (6,804 kg), but was limited by maximum take-off weight, so the full weapon load could only be carried with greatly reduced internal fuel; equipped with AN/APN-153 navigational radar, AN/APQ-115 terrain following radar, and a separate AN/APQ-99 attack radar, 199 built.


Uprated TF30-P-8 engine with 12,190 lbf (54.2 kN) of thrust.

In 1971, surviving A-7Bs were further upgraded to TF30-P-408 with 13,390 lbf (59.6 kN) of thrust; AN/APQ-115 terrain following radar in earlier A-7A is replaced by AN/APQ-116 terrain following radar; 196 built.


First 67 production A-7E with TF30-P-8 engines.


Two-seat trainer version for USN, 24 converted from A-7B, 36 from A-7C. In 1984, 49 airframes, including the 8 EA-7Ls, were re-engine with the TF41-A-402 and upgraded to A-7E standard.


Version built for the USAF, more powerful Allison TF41-A-1 turbofan producing 14,250 lb (63.4 kN) of thrust, and a single M61 Vulcan 20 mm rotary cannon; Improved AN/APN-185 navigational radar, upgraded AN/APQ-126 terrain following radar; 459 built.


Effectively an A-7D modified for Naval operations; with the same Allison TF41-A-1 and M61 Vulcan 20 mm rotary cannon and further improved AN/APN-190 navigational radar and AN/APQ-128 terrain following radar in addition to arrester gear and folding wings to allow for carrier operations. 529 built.

YA-7F Strikefighter

(A-7D Plus) 

Stretched, supersonic version of A-7 powered by an F100, optimized for interdiction role, but cancelled after two prototypes were built.


Proposed version for Switzerland, none built.


Two-seat prototypes built by Ling-Temco-Vought as a private venture.


Modified A-7E for Greece without air-refuelling capability, 60 built.


Two-seat trainer version for Greece.


Two-seat trainer version for Air National Guard, 30 built.


8 TA-7C modified into electronic aggressor aircraft used by VAQ-34, upgraded to A-7E standard while retaining twin seats in 1984.


Ex-USN A-7As rebuilt for Portuguese Air Force, 44 refurbished with TF30-P-408 engines and avionics fit similar to the A-7E.


Two-seat trainer version for Portuguese Air Force

Six converted from ex-USN A-7As.





46 ft 2 in (14.06 m)


38 ft 9 in (11.8 m)


23 ft 9 in (7.24 m) wings folded


16 ft 1 in (4.9 m)

Wing area

374.9 sq ft (34.83 m2)


NACA 65A007 root and tip

Empty weight

19,127 lb (8,676 kg)

Max take-off weight

41,998 lb (19,050 kg) overload condition.

Fuel capacity

1,338 US gal (5,060 l; 1,114 imp gal)

(10,200 lb (4,600 kg)) internal


1 × Allison TF41-A-2 non-afterburning turbofan engine,

15,000 lbf (66.7 kN) thrust


Maximum speed

600 kn (690 mph, 1,100 km/h) at sea level

562 kn (1,041 km/h; 647 mph) at 5,000 ft (1,500 m) with 12x Mk82 bombs

595 kn (1,102 km/h; 685 mph) at 5,000 ft (1,500 m) after dropping bombs


1,070 nmi (1,231 mi, 1,981 km) maximum internal fuel

Ferry range

1,342 nmi (1,544 mi, 2,485 km) with maximum internal and external fuel

Service ceiling

42,000 ft (13,000 m)

Rate of climb

15,000 ft/min (76.2 m/s)

Wing loading

77.4 lb/sq ft (378 kg/m2)


0.50 (full internal fuel, no stores)

Sustained manoeuvring performance

5,300 ft (1,600 m) turning radius at 4.3g and 500 kn (930 km/h; 580 mph) at an All-Up Weight (AUW) of 28,765 lb (13,048 kg)

Take-off runs

1,705 m (5,594 ft) at 42,000 lb (19,000 kg)



1× M61A1 Vulcan 20 mm (0.79 in) rotary cannon with 1,030 rounds


6× under-wing and 2× fuselage pylon stations (for mounting AIM-9 Sidewinder AAMs only) with a capacity of 15,000 lb (6,800 kg) total capacity, with provisions to carry combinations of:


4× LAU-10 rocket pods (each with 4× 127 mm (5.00 in) Zuni rockets)


2× AIM-9 Sidewinder air-to-air missile

2× AGM-45 Shrike anti-radiation missile

2× AGM-62 Walleye TV-guided glide bomb

2× AGM-65 Maverick air-to-ground missile

2× AGM-88 HARM anti-radiation missile

2× GBU-8 HOBOS electro-optically guided glide bomb


Up to 30× 500 lb (230 kg) Mark 82 bombs or Mark 80 series of unguided bombs

(Including 6.6 lb (3 kg) and 31 lb (14 kg) practice bombs)

Paveway series of laser-guided bombs

Up to 4× B28, B43, B57, B61 or B83 nuclear bombs


Up to 4 × 300 US gal (1,100 l; 250 imp gal),

330 US gal (1,200 l; 270 imp gal),


370 US gal (1,400 l; 310 imp gal) drop tanks


AN/ASN-90(V) Inertial reference system

AN/ASN-91(V) navigation/weapon delivery computer

AN/APN-190(V) Doppler groundspeed and drift detector

Texas Instruments AN/APQ-126(V) Terrain-following radar (TFR)

AN/AVQ-7(V) Head Up display (HUD)

CP-953A/AJQ solid state Air Data computer (ADC)

AN/ASN-99 Projected Map Display (PMD).



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