This page is focused on the DCS World F-16C module; see Falcon BMS for BMS related info.
The F-16C Fighting Falcon, often called the Viper, is a single-engine multi-role fighter jet airplane. The F-16 was created by General Dynamics (now Lockheed Martin) and operated by the United States Air Force and numerous other militaries. Despite the "F" (fighter) designation, it is designed for both air-to-air and air-to-ground missions and can use an array of weapons and sensors; built into the Viper is a 20mm cannon as well as a multifunction radar. The DCS F-16C models a Block 50 aircraft with the new F110-GE-129 engine and the Common Configuration Implementation Program (CCIP) avionics upgrade.
- 1 Weapons List
- 2 HOTAS
- 3 Flight Controls & Landing Gear
- 4 Digital Systems Overview
- 5 Air-to-Air Radar
- 6 Air-to-Air Weapons
- 7 Air-to-Ground Weapons
Partially or fully implemented weapons of the F-16C Viper:
- BDU-33, BDU-50LD/HD Training Bombs
- Mk-82LDGP, Mk-82AIR, Mk-84LDGP
- CBU-87 CEM, CBU-97 SFW
- 2.75” LAU-68, LAU-131 Rockets
- AIM-9L/M/P/X Sidewinder
- AIM-120B/C AMRAAM
- M61A1 20mm Cannon
- GBU-10, GBU-12
- GBU-31/A, GBU-38/B JDAM
- AGM-154A/B JSOW
- AGM-88C HARM
- AGM-65D/G/H/K Maverick
Weapons not yet implemented into the Viper:
- CBU-103, CBU-105 Cluster Bombs
- ALE-50 Towed Decoy
The Fighting Falcon's hands on throttle and stick (HOTAS) system is designed to allow the pilot to manipulate important avionics functions without releasing the hands from the throttle or control stick. This section will provide a summarized description of all HOTAS controls - detailed functionality will be described in other appropriate sections.
The control stick is a side-mounted stick used to manipulate the Flight Control System (FLCS), but also has numerous other HOTAS controls. The stick is mostly stationary and uses pressure sensitivity to be manipulated; it does, however, move a small physical distance to give tactile movement response to the pilot.
- Trim Switch: The Trim Switch commands pitch (up/down) and roll (left/right) trim to the FLCS.
- Display Management Switch (DMS): The Display Management Switch (DMS) is used for avionics display manipulation and to assign the Sensor of Interest.
- Forward: Sensor of Interest assigned to HUD/HMCS
- Aft: Sensor of Interest assigned and cycles between the left and right MPDs
- Left: Cycles three configured quick access pages on the left MPD from right to left
- Right: Cycles three configured quick access pages on the right MPD from left to right
- Target Management Switch (TMS): The Target Management Switch (TMS) manipulates various sensors depending on what is the Sensor of Interest.
- HUD SOI: When an A/G bomb is selected, designates SPI in DTOS/EO.
- FCR SOI: Commands SAM in RWS mode or commands BORE scan in ACM
- TGP SOI: Commands point track
- WPN SOI: Commands track
- HSD SOI: Designate active waypoint
- HUD/FCR/WPN SOI: Target reject
- HSD SOI: Drop
- FCR SOI: Expanded data
- TGP/WPN SOI: Toggles seeker polarity
- FCR SOI: Steps bugged track in TWS or commands HUD scan in ACM
- TGP SOI: Commands area track
- Right [long hold]
- FCR SOI: Toggles TWS and RWS mode
The throttle for the F-16 is mounted on the left side, thought it is not rail-mounted to the side of the fuselage as its appearance would suggest. Instead the throttle pivots on its mounted location to the panel. It has the following HOTAS controls:
- Communications Switch (Radio)
- Forward (VHF): keys up the VHF radio on the selected frequency for talking to JTAC, ATC, and other land/sea based assets
- Aft (UHF): keys up the UHF radio on the selected frequency for communication to air assets, such as flight members, AWACS or refueling aircraft
- Left (Out) [short press]: Toggles on and off datalink symbology on the MPDs
- Left (Out) [long hold]: Commands a datalink update
- Right (In): Transmits the current air-to-ground target over datalink
- Manual Range / Uncage Switch: this switch controls the range for air-to-air guns, uncages the missiles, or zooms the TGP depending on the selected SOI and master mode
- Antenna Elevation: This dial wheel (with center detent) controls the radar antenna elevation, allowing the pilot to slew the radar up or down to adjust the radar focus accordingly
- Dogfight / Missile Override
- Forward this position locks in place and retracts the airbrake.
- Aft this temporary position extends the airbrake as long as the switch is held in place, keeping it there after release.
- Cursor Control / Enable - This allows for the current Sensor of Interest to be manipulated, such as the FCR Acquisition Cursor or pointing the TGP camera.
- Black-out Switch
Flight Controls & Landing Gear
The F-16C has multiple flight control surfaces for maneuvering the aircraft. It has a "fly-by-wire" (FBW) system, which, opposed to a traditional mechanical or "direct" control system, the inputs given by the cockpit controls are inputted to a computer which then decides what controls to move in order to accomplish the desired maneuver. This computerized system is called the Flight Control System (FLCS, pronounces "flickus"). The FLCS also moves surfaces as a function of the angle of attack to provide the best control.
The F-16C's primary flight controls are:
- Stabilators: Two "stabilators" (stabilizer + elevator) located at the tail move on a single axis independently of one another to control both pitch and roll of the aircraft.
- Ailerons: Two normal ailerons located on the outer area of the wings to control roll of the aircraft. They also both droop down to add lift.
- Rudder: A single vertical rudder to control yaw.
- Leading Edge Flaps: Normal slats located on the leading (front) edge of the wings to add lift.
- Trailing Edge Flaps: Normal flaps located on the trailing (back) edge of the wings to add lift.
The control stick controls the stabilators, ailerons, and rudder and the rudder pedals control the rudder. The control stick mainly focuses on using force sensing for feedback, not to be confused for force feedback.
The speedbrake is a set of four retractable flaps on the back of the aircraft on either side of the engine, used to provide drag to decelerate faster. It is activated via the speed brake switch on the throttle. There are three positions - aft is momentary, the others are permanent.
- Aft: Speedbrake will extend as long as it is held.
- Center: The speedbrake is neither retracted nor extended.
- Forward: The speed brake retracts as long as it is in this position.
With weight off wheels, it is disengaged. It automatically engages upon there being weight on wheels. NWS is disengaged manually via the paddle switch on the stick.
Digital Systems Overview
The F-16's avionics are interfaced with via two Multifunction Displays (MFDs), the Upfront Controls consisting of the Integrated Control Panel (ICP) the Data Entry Display (DED), and the head-up display (HUD)/helmet mounted cueing system (HMCS). The hands on throttle and stick (HOTAS) system of the aircraft is also used for manipulating these systems, which is detailed in its own section and the sections relevant to specific HOTAS uses.
Sensor of Interest
In the F-16, either the HUD/HMCS, the left MFD, or the right MFD is the designated Sensor of Interest, or "SOI." The SOI is used to dictate what HOTAS buttons do what function. The SOI is changed via the Display Management Switch (DMS) on the stick - forward will assign SOI to the HUD/HMCS while aft will cycle SOI between the left and right MFDs. If an MFD is SOI, a white border around it is displayed. If the HUD is SOI, an asterisk is put in the upper left corner.
The F-16 has two Multifunction Displays (MFDs) on the left and right sides of the cockpit: each has 5 option select buttons (OSBs) on all four sides. The MFDs can display various software pages to manipulate the aircraft's avionics. Up to three pages per MFD can be selected on either MFD for quick access via pushbutton or HOTAS. These three pages always occupy the bottom center three pushbutton areas. In addition to these, a universal declutter (DCLT) button is provided, which will declutter the symbology depending on the page, and a SWAP button, which simply swaps the two MFD's quick access pages and selected page.
Selecting any of the three pushbuttons once they have already been selected prompts the main page menu. Any page can then be selected and will be filled at that pushbutton. That page can then be selected by either pressing the corresponding pushbutton or using the Display Management Switch (DMS) on the stick, and it will be highlighted. TMS LEFT and RIGHT respectively cycle the three quick access pages on the left/right MFDs in an outward fashion.
The F-16C is equipped with the AN/APG-68 pulse Doppler radar. This section will cover its air-to-air (A/A) functionality for surveillance of aircraft and to provide A/A weapon systems guidance in engaging aerial targets. The A/A radar is accessed from the Fire Control Radar (FCR) page. This section will provide an overview of the Fire Control Radar page in Combined Radar Mode (CRM) and Air Combat Maneuvering (ACM) mode; these are the two air-to-air main modes of the FCR.
The F-16 avionics display most radar target data as "trackfiles" - single objects in the air the computer determines to exist based on the return of one or more raw radar contacts. Trackfiles are displayed in Track While Scan and Single Target Track, and the designated target in the RWS Situational Awareness Mode (SAM) also displays as a trackfile.
Trackfiles are represented by a triangle symbol, with a stem coming out of one corner of the trackfile to indicate its track (velocity) across the ground. Underneath the trackfile is displayed its altitude in thousands of feet.
FCR Page Overview
The Fire Control Radar page is presented in an azimuth over range format with the aircraft at the bottom center of the display. The range axis is displayed in a vertical format, where higher range is higher on the physical MFD screen. Azimuth is horizontal, where something at the center of the display is directly in front of the ownship aircraft, and accordingly left/right of it when left/right of the display center.
- Radar Mode - This option allows for the selection of the A/A Combined Radar Mode (CRM) or Air Combat Maneuvering (ACM) mode, as well as any of the A/G radar modes (which is not covered in this section).
- Sub-mode - In CRM, this toggles between the Range While Search (RWS) and Track While Scan (TWS) modes. In ACM, this toggles between the Boresight (BORE), 10° x 60° (60), and 30°x 20° (20) modes. These may alternatively be selected with the HOTAS: TMS right (long) will toggle between RWS/TWS in CRM, while in ACM TMS forward commands BORE, down commands 60, and right commands 20.
- Expand View - This toggles the Normal/Expand view. With Expand view activated, the display is zoomed in on the Acquisition Cursor. A box indicates the region of the Expand view relative to the regular display scale. Expand can be toggled with the Pinky Switch.
- Not yet implemented.
- Not yet implemented.
- Not yet implemented.
- Azimuth Caret - This vertical "T" shaped indication indicates the current location of the radar antenna with respect to azimuth (left/right) of the aircraft. The tick marks each indicate 10° azimuth, with the center tick being 0° (60° left/right is the physical maximum).
- Elevation Caret - This horizontal "T" shape indicates the current vertical elevation of the radar with respect to the horizon. The radar elevation is always stabilized to the horizon. The elevation is shifted up and down via the Antenna Elevation Knob on the throttle and may also change automatically as a result of the bar setting. Each blue tick mark indicates 10° above or below the horizon, with the middle tick being the horizon.
- Bullseye Information - This arrow indicates the bearing from the aircraft to the bullseye. The number within indicates the bearing to the bullseye.
- Not yet implemented.
- Bar Setting - The radar antenna may automatically change position after each azimuth sweep to scan multiple elevations or "bars." The bar number corresponds to the number of different elevations scanned. The first bar is always the manually set elevation with the Antenna Elevation Knob, while the second and fourth bars are automatic and based off the manual setting of the first bar.
- Azimuth Setting - The radar horizontal azimuth setting is set here. The number displayed is the left/right azimuth (i.e. half of the total) in tens of degrees (6=60°, total 120°). The azimuth may be set to 10°, 30°, or 60°.
- Range Scale - The scale of the FCR page may be set with these two arrows. The number represents the maximum range it displays in nautical miles. This setting is only what the page displays; the radar will always scan to the farthest distance possible. The available options are 5, 10, 20, 40, 80, and 160 nautical miles.
- Acquisition Cursor - This is a cursor controlled with the Cursor/Enable Switch on the throttle, used for acquiring tracks and contacts into either Single Target Track or Situational Awareness Mode. Two numbers are displayed to the right indicating the maximum and minimum altitudes in thousands of feet the radar can see at the point the cursor is placed; this naturally changes with the elevation/bar setting.
- Horizon Line - This line is always aligned with the horizon and indicates the pitch and roll of the aircraft.
- Steerpoint - The current steerpoint is indicated by this "wedding cake" shape.
- Scan Limit Lines - When the scan azimuth is, under any circumstance except Single Target Track, less than 60° two blue lines indicate the area covered with the current azimuth setting. The azimuth center is centered on the Acquisition Cursor except in RWS SAM or TWS with a bugged track.
Range While Search (RWS)
Range While Search (RWS) provides the largest scan volume selection available and is designed for surveillance of a large area. With its Situational Awareness Mode (SAM), it also allows for weapons guidance.
- Raw Contacts - "Raw" radar contacts are displayed as hollow squares. As a contact 'ages' (the time passed since it has been swept over by the antenna), it visually fades and will eventually disappear. These are the raw returns of the radar, and as such multiple raw contacts may be a single aerial target.
Situational Awareness Mode (SAM)
Situational Awareness Mode (SAM) is a Range While Search function which allows for a contact to be designated, which will then center the scan azimuth on it and display it as a trackfile as opposed to a raw contact. Weapon guidance is available in SAM mode on the designated trackfile; as the radar continues to scan it will continue to display other raw contacts.
SAM is entered by slewing the Acquisition Cursor over a contact and pressing TMS forward. The cursor is then slaved onto the trackfile. Normal RWS can be returned to via TMS aft.
Track While Scan (TWS)
Not yet implemented.
Single Target Track (STT)
A/A Radar HUD Indications
The F-16C Viper carries a variety of Air-to-Air weapons that are mainly missiles. These weapons are to be included as these categories.