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33 votes
Accepted

Does an F/A-18 require a lot of rudder in turns?

I used to be an avionics instructor teaching maintenance type courses for the F/A-18. I have plenty of hours flying in the simulator where I would get the students to conduct navigation flights to ...
Craig's user avatar
  • 1,013
32 votes

Why did the RAAF procure the F/A-18 despite being purpose-built for carriers?

Two reasons: The airplane is extremely versatile, while having adequate performance, and is a good choice when a small airforce needs a do-everything airplane to replace multiple types. Being ...
John K's user avatar
  • 132k
28 votes

What is this F-18 Hornet "air intake" for?

It's for keeping the boundary layer flow from entering the intake, it's called a splitter plate. I think it's done to prevent turbulence inside the turbine (prevent compressor stall) and to make sure ...
Francis L.'s user avatar
  • 2,514
27 votes

Why are the F/A-18 rudders deflected in opposing directions during takeoff?

The real reason: Ground effect was not considered during development. Ground effect reduces the lift curve slope of lifting surfaces, and the low tail position of the F-18 makes this effect very ...
Peter Kämpf's user avatar
24 votes
Accepted

Why is this F/A-18 flying through a hailstorm of sparkles?

The sparks in the video come from the F-18's Vulcan cannon being fired at night. During daytime you'd only see muzzle flash accompanied by a pretty puff of smoke. Low light conditions bring out the ...
Jpe61's user avatar
  • 29.1k
23 votes
Accepted

What is the non-projected cross-hair for on the F-18 HUD?

It is a "Standby Reticle": A fixed standby reticle (Figure 7–151) is available in the upper right side of the HUD for use in performing visual designations in the event of a HUD failure. The ...
Ron Beyer's user avatar
  • 36.2k
23 votes
Accepted

What are these small engine inlets on the Super Hornet?

These are the auxiliary air inlets for the ECS (Environmental Control System): (image source) They provide air to the primary heat exchanger (A18), which is then exhausted via the ram air exhaust (...
Bianfable's user avatar
  • 56.6k
18 votes
Accepted

What is a “HIDE” system on F/A-18?

"Hyd" is slang for hydraulics. The landing gear is powered by one of the hydraulic systems, so if that system was down, the pilot wouldn't be able to extend the gear normally. The brakes are ...
HiddenWindshield's user avatar
16 votes
Accepted

What are these accelerating flare countermeasures called?

These are generally called "propelled flares", or sometimes "aerodynamic propelled flares". Some antiaircraft systems are able to distinguish between a normal flare and the aircraft, as the flare is ...
M28's user avatar
  • 2,459
16 votes

Why did the RAAF procure the F/A-18 despite being purpose-built for carriers?

Selection of the replacement of the Mirage III was of course carefully considered by the RAAF, and the most suitable airframe was considered for the mission and circumstances typical for a vast, ...
Koyovis's user avatar
  • 61.8k
14 votes

Why don't the US Navy Blue Angels fly Super Hornets?

The USN Blue Angel demonstration team is transitioning to Super Hornets. According to this press report: “We are supporting the Navy’s plans to transition the Blue Angels to Super Hornet aircraft ...
aeroalias's user avatar
  • 100k
13 votes

What is this F-18 Hornet "air intake" for?

EDIT: I'd just finished writing out my own answer when I stumbled across this answer to a different question, which nevertheless explains the function of the small intake in greater detail. I've ...
Cooper's user avatar
  • 2,365
12 votes
Accepted

Why does the F/A-18 have so many lift supplementing devices?

The leading edge strake extension is there to solve a handling qualities problem the airframe had at high angle of attack without it. Not only does the aircraft need to fly at high speeds (which ...
Rob McDonald's user avatar
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10 votes
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Why do the F/A-18 and the F-22 Raptor have horizontal stabilizer as well as canted rudders for pitch control?

The rudders on modern fighters are canted mostly to reduce their radar cross section. A straight vertical tail would produce a corner reflector in combination with the fuselage or the wing and would ...
Peter Kämpf's user avatar
10 votes
Accepted

Do the F-18's leading edge flaps deflect symmetrically in rolls?

Quoting the F/A-18A,B,C,D Flight Manual A1-F18AC-NFM-000, I-2-42 2.8.2.8 Control Augmentation System (CAS) [...] The lateral control system uses ailerons, differential trailing edge flaps, ...
Jan's user avatar
  • 2,398
10 votes

Why does the F/A-18 have so many lift supplementing devices?

The F/A-18 Hornet was designed to take off and land on an aircraft carrier. It also needed a very high maximum speed. To fly very slow (to land on the deck) and very fast, different aircraft shapes ...
Anonymous Physicist's user avatar
9 votes
Accepted

How far can a Super Hornet fly at max supersonic speed in a clean configuration?

An estimate: An F-18E Rhino can only obtain its maximum speed of Mach 1.8 only at 36,000 ft in ideal air conditions and only in a clean configuration i.e. no external stores. At 36000 ft at STP, ...
Romeo_4808N's user avatar
  • 74.1k
9 votes
Accepted

What part of the F-18's wing profile allows for high AoA flight?

You're correct that the leading edge extension (LEX) plays an important part in increasing the maximum angle of attack of the Hornet/Super Hornet. The LEX basically forms a vortex above the main wing, ...
aeroalias's user avatar
  • 100k
9 votes

Why do the F/A-18 and the F-22 Raptor have horizontal stabilizer as well as canted rudders for pitch control?

They're very different aircraft, built to different requirements, meant to fill very different roles. Large tails are good for pitch authority and high-alpha---which are good for maneuvering and ...
Hephaestus Aetnaean's user avatar
9 votes
Accepted

The F/A-18 Hornet , F15 and MiG-29 ailerons from the external parts of the wings go up some degrees in flight ,meaning adding " crow" .Why?

The pictures in the question show the normal position of the MiG-29 ailerons. That's how they are unless a roll is commanded. According to Mikoyan Mig-29 Fulcrum Pilot's Flight Operating Manual (...
Jpe61's user avatar
  • 29.1k
8 votes

What is the purpose of these "stickers" in the F/A-18 Super Hornet fuselage?

It may or may not be being used in this application, but they are location markers, usually used in weapons separation tests to record the movement and behavior of stores in the airstream as they ...
Romeo_4808N's user avatar
  • 74.1k
8 votes

What is this smoke coming from an F/A-18 shortly before takeoff?

It is not smoke. It is bleed air being blown behind the heat exchanger which forces cool air across the front of the heat exchanger, this is only happens on the ground. The left side of the aircraft ...
Enel's user avatar
  • 81
8 votes
Accepted

What is the function of the holes in splitter plates?

Do the holes in splitter plates reduce the boundary layer? Yes. Suction is applied to remove the slow-moving layer of air close to the surface, so the air entering the intake has as uniform a speed ...
Peter Kämpf's user avatar
7 votes

What is this F-18 Hornet "air intake" for?

The intake is for the primary heat exchanger. secondary is on the other side, Same location. The ambient air flows across a large rectangular heat exchanger. Basically a air to air radiator for the ...
Shawn's user avatar
  • 71
7 votes
Accepted

What is the altitude record for the F/A-18 Hornet?

I can tell you my experience during my stay in Zaragoza Air Base in northeastern Spain, in 1998. After heavy maintenance work, the twin-seater was ready to fly. In order to check all work done, we did ...
O'Terror's user avatar
  • 1,383
7 votes

How are the landing lights of the legacy F-18 Hornet seen before landing on the carrier?

No. The lights match the standard AoA indexer in the cockpit. When the airplane is on AoA, the center amber light is illuminated, as is the amber ‘donut’ on the AoA display. If the airplane is at a ...
Romeo_4808N's user avatar
  • 74.1k
6 votes
Accepted

How does F/A-18 autotrack work?

Autotrack means the FLIR (Forward Looking InfraRed) sensor attempts to track whatever object falls inside the tracking area. It means whatever the pilot was trying to keep up with was producing ...
Juan Jimenez's user avatar
6 votes

What is the non-projected cross-hair for on the F-18 HUD?

It is technically the standby reticle as mentioned above but in house it is known more as the seat height marker due to that being the most common use for it. As soon as you apply battery power the ...
Craig's user avatar
  • 1,013

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