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A-10

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The Fairchild-Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II (known as the Warthog or just Hog) originally started life as a Counter Insurgency (COIN) aircraft to replace the aging Bronco. During the early stages of design (by committee) in the late 60's, it turned into an absolute brute of a plane intended to deal with the 3rd Shock Army (probably on its own).

Armament: Choose from...

  • Integral GAU-8 30mm Avenger gatling gun.
  • AGM-65 Maverick air-to-surface missile.
  • Cluster, conventional and laser-guided bombs.
  • Rocket pods.
  • ECM pod under one wing.
  • two AIM-9 Sidewinder air-to-air missiles.

The GAU-8 cannon allegedly generates almost the same amount of recoil as one of the A-10's engines, leading to a military urban legend that if enough rounds were fired in a long burst, the plane would stop (or move backwards!) Sort of true but not very. If fired long enough it would act like an airbrake but the physics of inertia is against this legend.

"Friendly fire" incidents: Many but the important ones are

  • Gulf War of 1991 an A-10 attacked two Warriors (out of 37 parked up), killing nine soldiers.
  • Two Scimitar reconnaissance vehicles were attacked by an A-10 in the Iraq War of 2003.

Piccy: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Usaf.thunderbolt2.750pix.jpg