The Soviets attempted to go fishing for an F-14 that fell off the USS John F. Kennedy in 1976 – following the plane’s manage techniques went haywire and the pilot/RIO experienced to eject
Intended in 1968 to choose the place of the controversial F-111B, then underneath enhancement for the US Navy’s carrier fighter stock, the Grumman F-14A Tomcat used the AWG-9 program and carried the 6 Goal-54 Phoenix missiles that had been intended for the F-111B. A completely new fighter procedure was created all over these with emphasis on shut-in preventing “claws” together with standoff missile fighting.
All round, the F-14 was with no equivalent among the today’s Absolutely free Planet fighters. Six long-array Aim-54A Phoenix missiles could be guided from six different danger plane at lengthy selection by the F-14’s AWG-9 weapons handle program. For medium-range overcome, Sparrow missiles had been carried Sidewinders and a 20mm were available for dogfighting. In the latter function, the Tomcat’s variable-sweep wings gave the F-14 a beat maneuvering ability that could not have been accomplished with a “standard” fixed planform wing.
The Tomcat’s exceptional fighter abilities posed a severe risk not only to Soviet fighters but also to Russian strategic bombers and cruise missiles that had been tasked to assault US Navy’s provider strike teams (CSGs) if the Cold War went hot.
‘So serious a threat, that the Soviets tried out to go fishing for a VF-32 F-14 that fell off the USS John F. Kennedy on Sep. 14, 1976 – soon after the plane’s handle devices went haywire and the pilot/RIO had to eject,’ states Aaron Stormcastle, an aviation qualified, on Quora.
‘See, at the time, the John F. Kennedy was off Scapa Circulation (in Scotland’s northern islands)… which wasn’t as well significantly from the Soviet yard, and this gave them plausible deal with to attempt a recovery of the plane by posing as a fishing fleet conducting standard fishing functions.
‘Why go by all the trouble?
‘In 1976, the F-14 was nonetheless a brand new aircraft – full with its Goal-54 Phoenix missiles built to destroy Russian-made aircraft… and the Intention-54 alone was truly worth regardless of what effort it took to illicitly acquire (because securing the overall plane without anyone noticing would have been extremely improbable).’
‘However, by the stop of their functions in the region, the Soviet interlopers were being unsuccessful – and they went again to Russian waters empty handed.’
‘Once all the Ruskie hubbub calmed down, the US Navy sent in their ace-in-the-gap: Admiral Rickover’s science toy, the NR-1… which was a nuclear exploration submarine suited to these variety of mission.
‘Being nuclear run, the NR-1 could crawl alongside the bottom for as long as the onboard provisions (foods and water, primarily) held out – which permitted the crew enough time to zero in on the F-14 and examine what, if just about anything, the Soviets had attained.
‘The Tomcat wreckage was positioned shortly more than enough, and the NR-1 crew observed that it had in fact been thoroughly harassed by Soviet efforts – with the fuselage roughed up fairly a little bit and entangled in fishing nets that had no enterprise remaining there (the region of Scapa Movement does not have any professional fish stocks at the depth where Kennedy’s F-14 was sitting down).
‘At 1st, NR-1 couldn’t account for the Aim-54… but the missile was finally noticed after doing the job a grid pattern likely outwards from the F-14.’
‘With the Tomcat and its missile accounted for, and the Russians acquiring lengthy specified up on illicitly recovering possibly of them, the US Navy place their have operation into effect – employing a neighborhood salvage outfit to carry the airplane from its watery grave so that the Soviets wouldn’t be tempted to have yet another go at it.’
Picture credit rating: U.S. Navy