Combat Aircraft - July 2011

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WORLD NEWS
 India refines its fighter contest
 Latest F-16 MLU testing
 Northrop Grumman Firebird revealed
 Growler's first carrier deployment
 Boeing's Phantom Ray flies

PLUS! Special reports on F-35 flight-testing, the Osama bin Laden raid, NATO's ongoing Libyan air operations, US Army UH-72A Lakotas and Mexican C-130s

FRONT LINE
Our hard-hitting regular column by Robert F. Dorr

BOEING'S FIGHTER FUTURE
Jamie Hunter visits St Louis to discover how Boeing has made impressive additions to its current Super Hornet and Strike Eagle fighter products and how key international deals are vital to extending production

TIGER MEET
Cees-Jan van der Ende attends the 50th NATO Tiger Meet at Cambrai in France

ARMED AND DANGEROUS
Hawker Beechcraft has participated in flight demonstrations related to the USAF-led Light Air Support (LAS) program with its AT-6B. Jamie Hunter is briefed on the latest capabilities being developed for this light strike platform, with exclusive images from James Haseltine

ON THE ATAC!
The Airborne Tactical Advantage Company, better known as ATAC, provides contracted tactical airborne training for the US Navy and USAF. Tyler Rogoway reports on this fascinating company and its diverse missions

STRIKING LIBYA FROM THE SEA
For the first time since the intervention in Kosovo in 1999, the French Navy has found itself carrying out a large-scale combat operation. Henri-Pierre Grolleau reports from the deck of the Charles de Gaulle, cruising along the northern edges of the Gulf of Sirte

EVOLUTIONARY DOLPHIN
In recent years the US Coast Guard's H-65 Dolphin has been upgraded and adapted for missions that its designers never anticipated. Now, with plans to upgrade the entire fleet to the latest MH-65D configuration, Tom Kaminski reveals how its future is secure for many years to come

MIRAGE 2000: THE DELTA WONDER
The Dassault Aviation Mirage 2000 is well known for its outstanding agility. Henri-Pierre Grolleau details an aircraft that remains at the forefront of the French AF and of numerous foreign air arms

GREECE'S DELTA DEFENDERS
Following on from our focus on the Mirage 2000, Ioannis Lekkas reports from Tanagra on 331 Mira and takes a seat on board the Mirage 2000-5; the most advanced air superiority fighter in the Greek inventory

CROATIAN AIR FORCE AT 20
Turning 20 years old on December 12, 2011, today's Croatian AF (Hrvatsko Ratno Zrakoplovstvo,HRZ) can look back on an eventful history. Dr Heinz Berger discovers a force that faces a future of severe financial constraint, with photos by Katsuhiko Tokunaga/DACT

CALIFORNIA'S DESERT DELIVERY
Maintaining the ongoing mission in Afghanistan is a complex and costly affair. For the US Air National Guard, C-130s are providing a huge part of the overall support effort. Ted Carlson/Fotodynamics joins the California ANG for a first-hand look at how Hercules operations are carried out in the desert

CUTTING EDGE
Combat Aircraft's new monthly column reporting from the front line of aerospace technology, by David Axe