Air International 2008-02
M.Gething - Northrop's F-5 Tiger II /Cold war survivors/
Norway became the first overseas F-5 customer, when it ordered 65 F-5A/Bs in February 1964. Today, only six F-5Bs continue to fly from Rygge as part of the 'Eye of the Tiger' programme to test a Konigsborg anti-shipping missile.
Turkey has upgraded 48 of its F-5s lead-in fighters with new avionics. Designated F-5-2000, they are officially known as the Penceler (Little Claws) and sport similar markings to the other aircraft in the Turkish Air Force tactical fleet.
United States Navy/ Marine Corps F-5Ns are 'redesignated' former Swiss Air Force F-5Es. They equip three units and are used as aggressor aircraft for dissimilar air combat training, hence its unusual camouflage and red star.
Even the centre-line drop tank of this 701 Sqn F-5E is camouflaged in a distinctive, three-colour scheme. The number on the fin is the original US serial '61665', the squadron code '70112' is carried on the intake wall and the 'SRT' tail code reflects the fact that the squadron is based at Surat Thani in southern Thailand.
Swiss F-5s are expected to remain in service until around 2010, by which time a replacement will have been selected. The contenders; the Eurofighter Typhoon, Saab Gripen, Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet and Dassault Rafale, will be evaluated this year. F-5E J-3077 was photographed in June 2007 over mountains close to Sion.
All of the F-5EMs operating with 1°/1° GAV based at Santa Cruz are camouflaged and fitted with air-to-air refuelling probes. They are part of the first batch that were delivered to Brazil in the mid-1970s.
A striking image of a Northrop F-5N of VMFT-401 Snipers based at MCAS Yuma, Arizona.
Northrop F-5E Tiger II, upgrade variants
Royal Malaysian Air Force RF-5E Tigereye M29-20 about to land during the LIMA 2007 airshow at Langkawi, Malaysia on December 3 last year. The aircraft is one of two in service with the RMAF's 12 Skwadron at Butterworth Air Base and both have recently been upgraded by Airod.
Jordan continues to operate two F-5 units - 9 Sqn at Al Jafr Air Base and 17 Sqn at H5, Prince Hassan AB. This F-5F was photographed at Prince Hassan AB in 1995.
This Singapore Air Force F-5T of 144 Sqn was photographed at Korat, Thailand, during Exercise Cope Thunder in 2005. Based at Paya Lebar, this two seat variant is used for continuation training.