The F-16 Block 60 has a lot of advancements, one of which is the device at the tail. What is it?

F-16 Block 60 zoom view with freehand red circle

For clarification, I believe all these vents (second image) are for said device.

  • $\begingroup$ Is this an Israeli F-16? The only F-16's that I've seen with conformal fuel tanks are Israeli ones, and all the mods on this one make me think that the tail feature is some special Israeli modification of the F-16. $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 20, 2019 at 17:53
  • $\begingroup$ It is a Block 60, that makes it Saudi. AFAIK CFTs are an option for a lot of versions of the F-16. $\endgroup$
    – mike
    Commented Sep 20, 2019 at 17:59
  • $\begingroup$ Those conformal tanks ruin the lines of one of the prettiest fighters. Oh well, it's better to not run out of fuel than it is to be pretty. $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 20, 2019 at 23:25

1 Answer 1


That’s a ram air intake and exhaust for a heat exchanger used to cool the Falcon Edge Integrated Electronics Warfare Suite (IEWS). The system remains fairly clandestine, but a few of its components are known to exist.


  • 1
    $\begingroup$ The linked article references the IEWS, but nothing about the heat exchanger. I looked at other articles, no mention of the device. $\endgroup$
    – mike
    Commented Sep 20, 2019 at 19:16
  • $\begingroup$ I've come to the same conclusion as @Carlo Felicione, but I agree with mike, there needs to some evidence this is a heat exchanger. It most propably is, but not for sure. No upvote at this point. $\endgroup$
    – Jpe61
    Commented Sep 21, 2019 at 5:16
  • $\begingroup$ How does the IEWS look like exactly? I'm not sure that plane has it installed. $\endgroup$
    – mike
    Commented Sep 21, 2019 at 7:39
  • $\begingroup$ @mike it’s an internal avionics package, so it’s going to be a series of LRUs fitted into an avionics bay on the jet or various places. We do know the system uses an active digital jammer and these often consume a lot of power and get quite hot during operation, hence the need for an heat exchanger. $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 21, 2019 at 8:45

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