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Argentine Aircraft in the Falklands

During the Falklands campaign, the primary threat to the Royal Navy task force was the Argentine Air Forces' and Navy's attack aircraft. Some of which were based on the Falklands, others on the Argentine mainland. The premier threat coming from the Super Etendard with its ability to carry and launch the Exocet Anti-Ship missile.

Dassault Mirage III
McDonnell Douglas A-4 Skyhawk
IAI Dagger
BAC Canberra
FMA IA 58 Pucara
Aermacchi M.B.339
Learjet 35A-L
Dassault Super Etendard
Lockheed C-130 Hercules
Beechcraft T-34 Mentor

Dassault Mirage III

Dassault Mirage III
French designed strike aircraft

Type

High altitude, all-weather interceptor

Powerplant

One 13,668lb thrust SNECMA Alar9C turbojet

Speed (kmh)

2350 at 12,000m

Range (km)

685km on a low level mission with maximum external fuel

Service Ceiling (m)

17,000

Wingspan ((m)

8.22

Wing Area (m2)

35.0

Length (m)

15.03

Guns

Two DEFA 552A 30mm cannon each with 125 rounds

Bombs etc

8,818lb on five external hard points, can include tactical nuclear weapons and a variety of ordnance

Crew

1

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McDonnell Douglas A-4 Skyhawk

McDonnell Douglas A-4 Skyhawk

Type

Carrier borne attack fighter bombers

Powerplant

One 9,300lb dry thrust Pratt & Whitney J52-P-8A turbojet

Speed (kmh)

954 at 34,000ft with a 4,000lb bomb load

Range (km)

3,307 unrefuelled

Service Ceiling (m)

14,935 clean

Wingspan ((m)

8.38

Wing Area (m2)

24.15

Length (m)

12.27 excluding refuelling probe

Guns

Two 20mm Mk 12 cannon with 200 rounds per gun internally

Bombs etc

5,000lb or ordnance, including missiles, cluster bombs and drop tanks carried on five external hard points

Crew

1

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IAI Nesher/Dagger

IAI Nesher/Dagger
Israeli designed derivative of the French Mirage III. Locally known as the 'Dagger'

Type

Multi-role fighter

Powerplant

One SNECMA Atar 9C turbojet

Speed (kmh)

March 2.3+

Range (km)

1186 with 4700 litre's of auxiliary fuel in drop tanks plus 2 Air to Air missiles and 2600lb of bombs

Service Ceiling (m)

17,680

Wingspan ((m)

8.22

Wing Area (m2)

34.8

Length (m)

15.65

Guns

Two 30mm IAI/DEFA 552 cannon in the fuselage, with 140 rounds each

Bombs etc

12,730lb of ordnance

Crew

1

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BAC Canberra

BAC Canberra
British designed bomber, which has fulfilled many role from electronic warfare, to bomber and reconnaissance.

Type

Bomber

Powerplant

Two Rolls-Royce Avon 206 turbojets of 11,250lb st

Speed (kmh)

917 at 12192m

Range (km)

4274

Service Ceiling (m)

14630

Wingspan ((m)

19.49

Wing Area (m2)

9708

Length (m)

19.96

Guns

None

Bombs etc

6000lb

Crew

3

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FMA IA 58 Pucara

FMA IA 58 Pucara

Type

Strike aircraft

Powerplant

Two 978shp Turbomeca Astazou XVIG turboprops

Speed (kmh)

500

Range (km)

350 radius of action with full weapon load on hi-lo-hi mission

Service Ceiling (m)

10,000

Wingspan ((m)

14.5

Wing Area (m2)

30.3

Length (m)

14.253

Guns

Four 7.62mm machine guns and two 20mm cannon, with 900 and 270 rounds per gun respectively.

Bombs etc

3307lb of ordnance

Crew

2

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Aermacchi M.B.339

Aermacchi M.B.339
Italian built close support aircraft.

Type

Trainer and Close support aircraft

Powerplant

One 400lb dry thrust Piaggio (Rolls-Royce) Viper 632-43 turbojet

Speed (kmh)

925

Range (km)

Combat Radius 593km on a hi-lo-hi mission with maximum war load. Ferry range 2110 km with external fuel

Service Ceiling (m)

14630m

Wingspan ((m)

10.85 over tip tanks

Wing Area (m2)

19.3

Length (m)

10.97

Guns

None internally

Bombs etc

400lb of ordnance on six underwing pylons. Two inboard pylons can carry cannon or Minigun pods, and two center pylons are equipped for carriage of drop tanks

Crew

2

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Learjet 35A-L

The Learjet was used by the Argentines in the Falklands as a Reconnaissance and close support aircraft.

Type

Varied

Powerplant

Two 3500lb thrust Gareett TFE731-2-2B turbofans

Speed (kmh)

872

Range (km)

4,240

Service Ceiling (m)

13,715

Wingspan ((m)

12.04

Wing Area (m2)

Length (m)

14.83

Guns

None

Bombs etc

None

Crew

2 crew and 8 passengers

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Dassault Super Etendard

Dassault Super Etendard
French designed multi-role fighter.

Type

Carrier borne strike-attack and interceptor fighter

Powerplant

one 11,023lb dry thrust SNECMA Atar 8K-50 turbojet

Speed (kmh)

1180 at low level

Range (km)

850 on a hi-lo-hi mission with one Exocet and two external tanks

Service Ceiling (m)

13700

Wingspan ((m)

9.6

Wing Area (m2)

28.4

Length (m)

14.31

Guns

Two 30mm DEFA 553 cannon with 125 rounds per gun mounted internally

Bombs etc

4,630 lb of ordnance carried on five external pylons, including Exocet missiles and refuelling pods

Crew

1

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Lockheed C-130 Hercules

Lockheed C-130 Hercules
Used in the Falklands by the Argentine air force as a makeshift bomber and reconnaissance aircraft as well as a transport.

Powerplant: 

4 Allison T56-A-7 turboprops, 4050 hp each

Speed (Kmph): 

603 at 6100m

Range (Km): 

5470

Service Ceiling (m): 

9145

Wingspan (m): 

40.41

Wing Area(m2): 

162.11

Length (m): 

29.79

Guns:

None

Payload etc: 

92 passengers or 35700lb freight

Crew: 

5

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Beechcraft T-34A & C Mentor

Light trainer used by US Navy and Both the Argentine Air Force and Navy

Type

Basic Training and Light Attack Aircraft

Powerplant

One 715hp Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-25 Turboprop, with 492 litres of fuel

Speed (kmh)

387

Combat Radius with auxiliary fuel and weapons (km)

555

Service Ceiling (m)

9,145

Wingspan ((m)

10.16

Length (m)

8.75

Bombs etc

1,200lb of weapons on four underwing pylons. These can include flares, practice bombs, incendiary bombs, antitank missiles, rocket or gun pods

Crew

2 in tandem

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