The Air War in Vietnam IBM PC VERSION

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[OF thle



THE AIR WAR OVER NORTH VIETNAM Including Flight Simulations of

The A-6 Intruder and

The F-4 Phantom


Spectrum HoloByte” Division of Sphere, Inc. 2061 Challenger Drive Alameda, CA 94501



Stephen Coonts A former U.S. Naval Aviator, Stephen Coonts accumu- lated 1,600 hours in A-6 Intruders and made two combat cruises aboard the USS Enterprise during the Vietnam War. As well as providing the accurate techni- cal detail in the bestseller Flight of the Intruder (Simon and Schuster, 1986), Steve provided much more infor- mation in a very long transatlantic phone call. Steve also wrote Final Flight and The Minotaur.

Pete Bonanni Major, U.S. Air National Guard F-4, F-16 and A-7 pilot who provided anecdotal information about the F-4.

Norman Cosand ex-U.S. Air Force Captain, Flew Wild Weasel F-4 missions as a “Guy In Back” over North Vietnam. Provided much useful information about F-4 missions and flight characteristics.

John McGinn Lieutenant Commander, U.S. Navy Reserve— Veteran A pilot who is still flying and provided invaluable checks on our A-6 accuracy and pictures.

Phil Hanley Colonel, U.S. Air Force (ret.) Invaluable source of in- formation about Phantom vs. MiG combat over Viet- nam. Colonel Hanley is credited with the only F-4 gun kill of a MiG-19 over North Vietnam.

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Flight of the Intruder game and manual © 1990 Sphere, Inc. All rights reserved. Flight of the Intruder and Spectrum HoloByte are trademarks of Sphere, Inc. All other trademarks are owned by their respective holders.


Concept and Design Programming Team

Artwork and Animations Object Design and World Files

Music and Sounds Flight Models

Manual Artwork Photo Reference

Programming Team Manager Product Manager Testing

Special Thanks to

Rod Hyde

Chris Orton, Colin Bell, James Taylor, Dave Whiteside, Steve Parys and Paul Dunscombe

Mark Shaw, Jody Sather and Matt Carlstrom

Paul Dunscombe, Stephen Tickle and Mark Shaw

Colin Bell Vera Piqueur, Colin Thorpe and Colin Bell

Rod Hyde, Robert Argento, Marisa Ong, Nick Lavroff, Steve Perrin and Robert Giedt

Chuck Butler

Jack McGinn, Gilman Louie, Stephen Coonts, Phil Hanley and Norman Cosand

Chris Orton Rod Hyde

Steve Perrin, Paul Jepson, Gilman Louie, Karl Maurer, Marisa Ong, Anthony Chiang and Robert Giedt

Gilman Louie, Phil Adam, Guymond Louie, Karen Sherman and Jim Mackonochie


Come Fly With Me

by Stephen Coonts

A modern jet warplane is a strange, challenging machine, and its cockpit is much different than the places that most of us are familiar with. It’s a flying Grand Prix racer, world-class superbike and a video game, all in one.

This magnificent machine slices

through the atmosphere with a free-

dom that cannot be described, only ex-

perienced. A slave to your every whim,

the aircraft responds to the slightest

pressure on the controls, yet is ready

to kill you the instant you make a false

move. There is the darkness and the

weather nothing is as black as a

night sky under a tropical overcast as

you skim above the ground knowing

the slightest caress from Mother Earth will be instantly, totally, fatal. There is the enemy in combat they are doing their damnedest to destroy your machine, and you with it. If you survive all that, then you may sample the piéce de résistance , the night carrier landing, usually in foul weather, occasionally in a shot-up airplane. You come out of the goo and there is the deck, pitching gently with the meat- ball and the centerline lights and all you have to do is fly your air- plane through the needle’s eye into an arresting gear wire.

So come on!

Come fly with me.

You awaken in the middle of the night, put on your stinky, green, one-piece flight suit and your steel-toed flying boots you need the steel toes to keep your feet from being torn off by the instrument panel if you eject and stumble through the passageways to the briefing room to learn your target and your mission. You swig a cup of bitter coffee and don your flight gear in layers: G-suit, torso harness, survival vest, pistol, helmet, oxygen mask, gloves, flash- light, survival radios. You even wedge a candy bar and a plastic baby-bottle full of water into one of the pockets of your G-suit.

Out on the flight deck your aircraft is waiting. The night is hot and humid in the tropics you quickly work up a sweat which soaks your underwear and flight suit and runs in salty rivulets into your eyes.

You examine the plane and its weapons with your flashlight. There are a lot of weapons on this A-6 tonight, ten 500-pound bombs, a dozen Rockeye anti-tank weapons at 500 pounds each, and a 2,000- pound belly tank on the center-line station. 16,000 pounds of internal fuel. The plane weighs 56,500 pounds for the catapult shot


over 28 tons. Over half that weight is fuel and ordnance.

When you are satisfied that all is as it should be, or when you can put it off no longer, you climb the ladder into the cockpit, for this plane is big, with the cockpit rail nine feet above the deck. The plane captain helps you strap yourself to the ejection seat. Perhaps he says something he thinks is funny because you look like you need it.

On signal you bring the machine to life, start the engines, turn on the inertial navigation system, computer, radios, radar, the elec- tronic counter-measures, and check the health of every system. All go.

You sit staring across the deck at the inky blackness, at the other aircraft with other men like you, equally competent, equally scared, also waiting.

Then the yellow-shirt taxi director gives the signal. You use throttle and brakes carefully, attentive to every twitch of his hand and nod of his head. There is little room on the flight deck of an aircraft carrier and most of it is taken. You get what is left over. So you taxi slowly, obediently, alert for the exhausts of other aircraft or grease that will break your tires’ adhesion to the anti-skid surface. The sea is out there in that blackness, waiting. As you taxi, you lower and lock the wings and drop the flaps and slats to takeoff position.

Onto the catapult. You feel the clunk as the shuttle captures the nose-tow link and you see the cat officer’s signal to advance the throttles to full power.

You shove the levers forward to the stops and take your feet off the brakes. The engines wind up with a howl audible even through the padding of your helmet.

Your breathing is rapid, the salt of your sweat stings your eyes as you waggle the controls and check the engine instruments. The machine trembles from the fury of the roiling air being sucked into the intakes and blown furiously out the exhausts.

You flip on the plane’s exterior lights, you signal to the catapult officer you that are ready to fly, then put your head back into the headrest and wait for the shot.

Ahead of you is a hundred yards of dimly-lit deck, then nothing! The night is waiting to swallow you. Inside this machine full of fuel and laden with weapons, you will soon be thrown from this deck into that hot, humid, black air, sixty feet above the night sea, 15 knots above a Stall. The enemy is also waiting, also ready even now they are loading belts of ammo into the anti-aircraft guns and testing their missiles.

Your life will depend on your skill, your knowledge, your courage, your determination.

You blink the sweat from your eyes and take one more ragged breath.

The catapult fires and the G slams you back into your seat as the blackness hurls toward you.


TABLE OF CONTENTS INTRODUCTION Personnel/Contributors 2 Come Fly With Me, by Stephen Coonts 4 Table of Contents 6 Introduction 8 About This Manual 9 Hardware Requirements 9 Getting Started 10 Conventions Used In This Manual 10 PART I: YOUR FIRST FLIGHT IN THE A6 INTRUDER History aT Duty Roster 12 The Mission 13 Cockpit Orientation 14 Takeoff Procedures and First Flight 16 Controlling Your Aircraft 16 Directional Control, Flying With The Stick 17 So Let’s Go Already 17 First Strike Mission 19 Landing 20 A Typical Intruder Mission 21 PART Il: YOUR FIRST FLIGHT IN THE F4 PHANTOM History 25 Cockpit Orientation 26 Takeoff Procedures and First Flight 27 Controlling Your Aircraft 2r About the BarCAP Mission 27 Going Into Combat Using the Sparrow 29 Using the Sidewinder 30 Using the 20mm Gun 31 Landing 32 Flying The F-4 33 PART Ill: YOUR FIRST OPERATION AS CAG Background and Duties of a CAG37 A Mission Of Your Own 39 Target Intelligence 40 General Intelligence 41 Waypoints 42

Stores 45


Aircraft Information Enemy Encounters


Rules of Engagement Operation: BARCAP Operation: DECK ALERT Operation: TALLY HO YO Operation: BACK BREAKER Operation: MORNING SONG Operation: JULY 4TH EVE Operation: JULY 4TH DAY Operation: JULY 4TH REFROG Operation: LIGHTS OUT Operation: IRON RAIN | Operation: IRON RAIN II Operation: ALPHA STRIKE Operation: HUNTER KILLER The Most Dangerous Game

PART V: DEBRIEFING Operation Statistics Badges and Medals Sierra Hotel

PART VI: REFERENCE Menus Aircraft Specifications Cockpits Instruments in Common Warning Lights Intruder Only 89 Phantom Only The Phantom Radar Screen Carrier Landing Strike Mission Tactics Officer Training For Modern Jet Aircraft Air Combat Maneuvers Fuel Management Using the Radio Armament The Naval Air War In Vietnam Glossary and Abbreviations Keyboard Layout and Explanation Index


This simulation takes place just prior to and during the Linebacker campaign in 1972 over North Vietnam. The object of the game is to complete assigned missions and do it with minimum losses of equipment or personnel. Usually, but not always, a mission is part of a larger operation and is undertaken by one of several sections of aircraft. For example, a section of F-4 Phantoms could be given a MiGCAP mission, and a section of A-6 Intruders could be given the bombing mission as part of an overall operation to destroy a bridge. In some cases, such as the “Morning Song” operation, only one section of Intruders is used so that the mission is effectively the same as the operation.

You can take the role of a Phantom pilot, an Intruder pilot or the Commander Air Group (CAG) based on a carrier at Yankee Station. The CAG is primarily responsible for planning missions, but he can fly any aircraft in the mission if he chooses to do so. Using this game, you can plan your own missions against famous targets in Vietnam such as the Yen Bai Railroad Bridge or the thermal power plant at Hanoi.

Success is measured by operation completion and safe return of all aircraft. Individual survival, while important, is not the sole measure of success. Moreover, it can be just as important how you win as if you win. If the Rules of Engagement are in force and you violate them, it will not matter how vital the target you hit you’re headed for a court-martial.

A key feature of this simulation is that there can be many friendlies (up to eight, arranged in four flights of Intruders or Phantoms) as well as many bogeys. Friendlies can have different missions in the same operation. You may be on a bombing run and see either a friendly Phantom protecting you from MiGs or an A-6 attacking SAM sites to protect you. Alternatively, you can do the protecting as an A-6 friendly goes on the bomb run. Moreover, you can take the role of any friendly at any time.

No matter what role you take, you can switch aircraft in mid-mission and always be where the action is. If you are flying an A-6 in to bomb a bridge, you can switch to the covering F-4s to dogfight the MiGs coming up to stop you, switch back to the A-6s to make the actual bombing run, and then switch back to the Phantoms to cover the retreat.

In short, with this game you can participate in every facet of the deadly air war over North Vietnam, 1972.



You don’t have to read every word in this manual in order to see action in southeast Asia. If you prefer to learn by trial and error, you can use the “Five Minutes To Play” card in your package. This will provide you with a command summary and an overview of the game, giving you just enough information to get you started. Then you can always turn to the manual for in-depth informa- tion on any of the game components.

On the other hand, if you are fairly new to this kind of game, we recommend you take a little time to read the introductory material in the manual and undertake the first missions described. Flying a Phantom or an Intruder is a challenging task and involves skills that are best learned through step-by- step instructions. Once you feel proficient flying either aircraft, then you can undertake some of the more advanced missions. Missions are described in detail in Part V.

Getting Started (below) shows you how to install the software for the first time and introduces you to some of the conventions used in this manual. It’s important that you read that section; otherwise, later sections of the manual may not make much sense.

The Reference Section (Part VI) provides detailed information about the aircraft (both friendly and bogey), the weapons, as well as the menus and keyboard commands available to the player. Turn to the Reference section whenever you want to learn more about your aircraft or its payloads.

HARDWARE REQUIREMENTS CGA/Hercules Graphics: 512K RAM EGA/VGA Graphics: 640K RAM Disk Drive: 5¥%4" or 3¥2" floppy drive Mouse: Optional

Joystick: Optional

10 FLIGHT ==ert# == INTRUDER


You can install Flight of The Intruder onto a hard disk, or you can play it directly off the floppy disk. If you are playing off a floppy disk, you should make a copy of your original disk first and put the original away in a safe place. That way, if anything should ever happen to your backup copy, you will still have the original to copy from.

Conventions Used In This Manual

Input Devices: Whether you use a joystick, a mouse or the keyboard, you will find that you often need to choose from a number of different options. To avoid multiple instructions, we will use the term select to describe this process, no matter which input device you use.

If you are using a joystick, choosing an option involves two steps: first you highlight the desired option and then you select it. Highlight the option by moving the joystick and select by pressing the fire button while the option is highlighted.

If you are using the keyboard, you can select the option directly by pressing the key shown at the lower right corner of the icon. For example, to select OK from the above selection screen, simply press (Enter), the key shown at the lower right corner of the icon. Use the arrow keys to move up and down the pull-down menu.

If you are using a mouse, you can select the desired option just by pointing to it and clicking the left mouse button. You can also use the mouse to point to a Menu heading, bring down the menu and make a selection from it.

Step-By-Step Instructions: When you need to do something (such as press a key or select an option), we will use the following formatting:

ce Press [+] to increase thrust to the maximum value.

This way, you'll be able to distinguish between instructions and explanations with just a glance.



The Grumman A-6 was the response to a need found during the Korean War: an effective, all-weather, close support aircraft that could be flown from carriers.

Several design changes and designations later, the production lines started rolling on the A-6A. Now in 1990, 28 years later, the very similar A-6E is still being produced, an enviable record in anyone’s book.

The Intruder is a dedicated bomber. Unlike other naval attack craft, such as the A-4 Skyhawk and A-7 Corsair, the Intruder carries no air-to-air weaponry. It relies on stealth and its ability to fly in any weather to get past defendng aircraft, deliver its bombs, and get home.

The “heart” of the A-6 is DIANE, the Digital Integrated Attack Navigation Equipment. It is rumored that the name, belonging to the daughter of one of the design engineers, came first and the designation later. This combination of equipment, which has undergone regular upgrades over the years, essentially consists of a search radar, a tracking radar, and an inertial navigation system. These let the plane navigate in all weathers, seek out and track both mobile and immobile targets, and map terrain ahead. Initial flight checking was a nightmare, but by 1965 Intruders were dropping their 18,000 Ib bombloads wherever asked for in North and South Vietnam.



The first thing you need to do is get your name on the Duty Roster. Initially, the Roster just has “Rookie” in every name slot.

Select the name at the top of the Duty Roster.

A dialog box appears. This is where you will enter your name and callsign. (The callsign is always used over the air in Vietnam for security reasons. See the Glossary for some examples).

or Press to clear the name field and type in your name. You can use for editing. dl Highlight the callsign field and enter your callsign. Select OK.

Back at the Corridor scene, you are faced with the following options: Scramble Phantom Pilot Brief Intruder Pilot Brief CAG Brief

Duty Roster

cr Select Intruder Pilot Brief. You will be moved to the Briefing Room.

The board in the Briefing Room is being used to describe an operation. The icons show the options available to you. In this case we want to cycle through the operations until we get to “Morning Song.”






or Keep selecting “Next Op” ((+}) until “Morning Song” appears. Select OK ((Enter)).

You are presented with a new set of icons (see figure below).

These new icons provide you with information about the operation, giving you details about stores, your aircraft, the waypoints, and other relevant data.

ce Select {1} for information about the Morning Song operation.

The objective of this mission is to destroy a torpedo boat. Nearby barges have been designated as the secondary targets. Unless you are feeling especially skillful, don’t bother with these on your first mission.

The torpedo boat is a fairly soft target, and so the Walleye is the ideal weapon. It is a relatively easy weapon to use. (For more infor- mation about the Walleye and the other weapons, see Part VI later in this manual).

If you like, you can select the other icons to learn more about the oper- ation. Just follow the selection procedure appropriate to your input device. AS soon as you are ready to fly your Intruder, select OK from the above set of icons.

You now find yourself in the cockpit of an Intruder on the catapult.


Cockpit Orientation

Take a few moments to familiarize yourself with the Intruder. Look at the components of the cockpit and compare them with the above illustration. You don’t need to know what every item represents just now only the ones you will be using on your first flight. The cockpit and all its components are discussed in detail in the Reference section.

What you need to know for your first flight:

1. Combined moving map/radar. The map is always oriented with north at the top. Your position is represented by a pulsing square on the display. Sometimes a smaller square is also displayed. This is the position of a MiG referred to by a recent message at the top of the screen.

The radar mode changes depending on the weapon selection and delivery mode. In this first mission we will be using the Walleye missile, so the screen actually shows a TV picture relayed from the missile.

You can toggle between Radar and Map by pressing (C}.

2. RPM gauge. This represents the percentage of power that has been applied with the throttle ({+]) key. The example shows 100% power being applied.

3. Wheel brake light. The light is off, signifying that your wheel brakes are not on.

4. Airspeed dial. Shows the Intruder’s true speed in knots (KTS).


5. Compass. Displays the heading. The following table shows the relation- ship between compass points and degrees from the vertical.

O degrees north 90 degrees east 180 degrees south 270 degrees west

6. Altimeter. Displays the height in feet. The big hand rotates 360 degrees for every 100 feet. The little hand rotates 360 degrees for every 1,000 feet. The digits record the altitude in 1,000s of feet.

7. Attitude Director Indicator (ADI). The ADI helps to orient your aircraft to the horizon while pitching and rolling. Use visual contact with the real horizon to orient the aircraft directionally.

Before taking off, take a look at the other views from your cockpit:

(‘@ Use the combination of the and numbers 1, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8 and 9 on the number pad to shift your viewpoint around the cockpit. The position you are looking at corresponds to the key on the number pad with as the forward view. Thus, is the left for- ward view, (Shift](9] is the right forward view, is the left view, (Shift](6} is the right view, and so forth. This can be duplicated on the normal keyboard pad by using numbers (3) (9} without the (Shift). In this case, the keys travel from [3] (left back 45°) to [4] (left) all the way around to (9] (right back 45°) This means that on the number pad is the equivalent of (6) on the keyboard. and

Shift}(9) (or (6) and (7}) give you all the necessary instruments, there are no important instruments in any other portion of the Intruder cockpit.

(@ ~ Goto the right 45° view (7) or (Shit)(9) you'll learn more about the additional instruments later. For now, note the position of the Multiple Weapons Selection Panel. You'll need this when the time comes to select the Walleye missile.


Even though the other six views do not contain any instruments, you should be looking around all the time during a flight. Remember that your six o’clock view (directly behind your plane) is your most vulnerable position. This means that even though your six o’clock view does not give you any instrument data, it can let you know if you have a bogey on your tail. There is a further complication in that you cannot look directly back because your plane is in the way. You have to use one of the Back 45° positions and weave to see what is on your tail.

ll Use or (6) to return to the front view.

Takeoff Procedures and First Flight Controlling Your Aircraft



-~ ~ BANK RIGHT = >









Directional Control “Flying with the Stick”

7 8 9 Fighter pilots control the di- Home} | 4 PgUp rectional movement of their 4 5 6 planes with a hand control BANK LEFT +4 ee BANK RIGHT commonly known as the

stick. The accompanying 1 é 3 diagrams show how to 1) (Papn control your A-6 Intruder fais wee using either joystick, mouse or keyboard.

Throughout this manual, references to the stick apply equally to operations using either the keyboard, the mouse or the joystick. For example, “pull back on the stick” means either “press the down arrow on the numeric keypad,” “move the mouse toward you,” or “move the joystick back toward you,” de- pending on the input device you are using. Refer to the above diagram for the other directional equivalents.

Note: When you use the keyboard to control directional movement, the aircraft’s “stick” automatically centers itself after each keypress, allowing you to maintain a constant rate of turn. In other words, if you press the Left Arrow key once, your aircraft will bank left at a small constant rate and continue to do so until you make another directional change. If you want to increase the degree of turn (or any other directional change), you need to hold the key down for a longer period of time. However, holding the left key down will eventually roll the plane all the way over. To make a fast tum, you must hold down both the Left Bank key and the Pull Nose Up key, which puts the plane into a sharp turn. The longer you hold the Pull Nose Up key down, the faster the turn (other things being equal). Things are slightly more com- plicated when you use the normal (rather than the “super”) engine.


Pause: You can pause the game at any time and put everything into a state of suspended animation. To do this, press (P). Press it a second time to resume play. Note that this “stops the world.” You can go get a cup of coffee or have dinner without worrying about the mission being completed without you. While pausing, you can still move around the different views and diff- erent aircraft. The rotation and zoom options (See page 138) also work during a pause.

So Let’s Go Already OK, OK. So you think you’re ready for your first flight? All right, let’s go. You are now under the Catapult officer’s orders. When you are ready:

ec Press to launch the Intruder. If you do not launch within 5 seconds, you are automatically launched.


In two seconds you are at the bow of the carrier 60 feet above sea level (SL), doing about 145 KTS. Don’t sit back and enjoy the view just yet; you’ve got work to do. First, you need to put the landing gear away:

all Press (G] to get the landing gear up. Three lights in a row in the upper left of your control panel will go out and and you will hear the sound of the gear retracting.

Next, you need to start climbing slowly, and increasing your speed:

or Pull back slightly on the joystick (or press (2]) to start a 4,500 ft/ min climb. The radar screen gives a digital readout of speed and climb rate in the upper left corner.

You can use ADI rather than VVI to monitor your climbing rate. See Part VI for more information on these instruments.

oc At 170 KTS, press [F] to put your flaps up. The “Flap” light on the left side of your control panel goes out.

Next you need to level out a little at about 500 feet:

or At 500 feet, level out by gently pushing the stick forward (or press on the number pad). Stop once you are straight and level.

When the ASI shows about 400-450 KTS we climb to our cruising altitude:

oc Pull back on the stick (or press (2)) to achieve a 30 degree rate of climb. Level out at 10,000 ft. and set the throttle to achieve 400-450 KTS True. This should require about 86% RPM.

OK, so you’re two miles up, and you have to find your way to the target (re- member, you’re on a mission). This is a good time to consult the map.

ll If the map isn’t showing, press (C) to bring it up.


A-6 At this stage you can fly on automatic pilot or manually. Autopilot is available because the waypoints to the target have been programmed into the on- board computer. By invoking the autopilot, the computer automatically steers the aircraft to the waypoints in this mission: the carrier, the torpedo boat (the target) and back to the carrier.

all Press (A] to engage the autopilot.


The aircraft should bank and turn towards the first waypoint. This gives you a chance to get used to the aircraft. You can disengage the autopilot by pressing |A] a second time if you wish to experiment with the aircraft con- trols. To get back on course, press [A] to re-engage the autopilot.

If you are still some way from the target, you can press to accelerate the action and press again just short of the target. The acceleration automatically turns off any time you are being threatened by MiGs or SAMs.

Note that the accelerator key affects all aspects of the operation, so that all aircraft are teleported a distance in proportion to their speed. Your wingman goes with you and the MiGs are still after you.

First Strike Mission

Now it’s time to select your weapon. As we noted earlier, the torpedo boat is a relatively “soft” target, making it ideal for the Walleye missile. It is “soft”

because the boat is lightly armored and just steaming out to sea; it has not

yet built up speed.

er Press [7] on the keyboard to go to the weapon selection panel of the A-6. Press to toggle through the Air-to-ground weapons to select the Walleye missile, and to arm the missile.

The Walleye is now ready to go. Next you need to target the missile and release it at the right moment:

cr Dive at the torpedo boat. The radar will show a TV-like image of the boat. Line up the screen’s cross hairs on the image and press

to fire the missile.

If you were successful in hitting the target, you should see an explosion. If not, well, better luck next time. In either case, it’s time to head back to the carrier, before you start running low on fuel or a MiG gets on your tail.

If you’re on autopilot, your Intruder should already be heading back to the ship. If not, press (A] to engage it.

20 FLIGHT “moor tH ==


You may not feel ready to attempt a manual landing at this stage, so try an auto landing by selecting (A). Alternatively, you can bring up the menu bar by pressing (F10], using (+) to go to the FILE menu, then using [+] to move the highlight to End Mission and selecting it by pressing (Enter). This takes you directly to the Debriefing Room no matter what stage of the game you’re in. Needless to say, this procedure is for the more lily-livered players, those who should have been weeded out at the recruitment office. If you must use it (or if you just want to learn more about menu options), see the Reference section. You can also consult the Reference section for information about manual landing.

When your hook has caught the wire and the aircraft has slowed down, you

are automatically moved to the Debriefing Room. Look at the TV screen to see how successful you were.







The statistics for the current mission are displayed on the Debriefing Room monitor. The VCR buttons give you the chance to see more detailed results of the mission by pressing {i ], a check to see how well you met your way- points by pressing (W), a chance to review any photographs you took by pressing (P], or the videotape from your airplane’s video recorders by press- ing (A], or you can move on to your next mission by pressing (Enter). See Part V for information on analyzing these statistics. If you have earned a decora- tion you may get pulled out of the debrief for a photo opportunity. If you have done well, a word with your boss comes next; look to see if you are on the Sierra Hotel Notice on his wall. The Sierra Hotel Notice lists the top ten pilots that have played the simulation. The derivation of the term Sierra Hotel is in the Glossary.


A Typical Intruder Mission

by Lt. Cmdr Jack McGinn, USNR

It’s 0230; you’re sound asleep aftera tough bombing mission in the North last night. The carrier’s been on station for three weeks now in mon- soon season and the constant foul- weather flying (ceilings have been av- eraging 300 ft to 500 ft with visibility often down to 1 to 2 miles in rain) is draining you. The stateroom phone rings; you have to fly a strike in the North against a high value target. It’s time to get your act in full gear. The day has just begun.

After you get the basic details from

the duty officer in the Ready Room,

you meet your B/N (Bombardier/Nav-

igator) and visit the CV’s intel center

for the latest information on the

target (photos, defenses, restrictions,

other planned attacks) and the latest

SAM threats affecting the general

flight route. The preflight planning

includes ingress and egress route

selection to take advantage of terrain

masking and minimizing enemy de-

fenses, weapons load and release calculations, selection of attack type, briefs on the communications plan, and basic aircraft takeoff planning data.

After preflight planning is complete, you give the duty officer the weight chit which has the aircraft launch weight; the catapult offi- cer and crew need this for your cat launch. Then it is on to your squadron’s Maintenance Control space to read the aircraft data book to see what maintenance has been performed and current status of all aircraft systems. After a quick stop in the squadron paraloft to suit up in your flight equipment G-suit, torso harness, survival vest, helmet, oxygen mask and navigation publications you check your drinking water before leaving for the flight deck.

It is very dark on the pre-dawn flight deck as rain continues to fall from the low ceiling. Your plane captain briefs you on his inspection of the aircraft. You tell him to keep the canopy closed 'till you and your B/N perform the mandatory preflight inspection of the aircraft so the seats won't get too wet. It’s going to be a long flight so you don’t want to sit on a cold, wet ejection seat all flight. After the inspection, you climb in the cockpit and strap yourself into the ejection seat before commencing the aircraft prestart checklist.


Meanwhile, the B/N is going through his prestart checks. After engine start, he brings the computer system and radar on-line and begins to enter the turnpoints and waypoints the computer needs for your flight route. After start and post-start checks are completed, you signal you are ready for launch. The Ordies pull your bomb rack safety pins. Using flashlight wand signals, a taxi director instructs deck crewmen to “break the aircraft down” (remove its tie down chains). He taxis you forward to bow catapult number 1. As you approach the catapult you acknowledge the “Weight Board” (it has the weight you sent up earlier on the weight chit); he signals you to drop your tailhook (a check to ensure it will come down) and to spread your wings. You lower the flaps and slats, perform your takeoff checklist, and make sure the ejection seat is armed. Follow- ing the director’s and cat officer’s signals, you taxi into the shuttle and are signalled to run up to full power. One last check of the gauges, a good wipe out of all the control surfaces, a “good to go” from your B/N and you turn on your lights as a signal to the cat officer; you’re ready to launch. About 2 seconds after he touches the deck with his wand, the cat fires and you go from 0 to 150 KIAS in less than 2 seconds. With a full load of Mk82s, that max weight cat shot was a vicious attention-getter in the absolute dark of the predawn clag.

After you clear your head, you have already raised your gear, started a climb straight ahead and accelerated to raise the flaps and slats while the B/N calls the CV to say you're airborne. While execut- ing the departure procedures and checking in with the appropriate airborne controllers, the B/N brings his system to life, providing you with basic navigation information to steer to the coast-in point. Prior to going feet dry, it is time to review the weapon system settings ensuring the proper wing stations are selected and the weapon system is ready to go except for the Master Arm Switch. You’ve checked that the passive EW system is operational and the active ECM system is in Standby, ready to go. You also take one last look at the chaff, flare and jammer panel to ensure it is ready for pilot activation when the SAMs come up.

It’s still black outside as the driving rain beats on the windscreen. Approaching the coast-in point, the B/N turns his radar on for one sweep to update his navigational system. Keeping the radar silent for as long as possible will help to not alert the enemy’s defenses. As you prepare to hit your first point, you descend to your preplanned ingress altitude and select the terrain clearance display on your VDI. The B/N is glued to the radar scope as you start to weave your way through the mountains on the route. Being low and masking with the terrain, the SAMs know you're there but they can’t get a good lock. The EW indicator is alive with strobes. With the B/N talking from his radar display and you viewing the terrain contours build- ing on the VDI, you weave through the mountains and valleys at 500 ft, 420 KIAS. Your world is the B/N and the VDI.

22 FLIGHT === oF tu


Nearing the target, a power plant tucked ina valley, you accelerate to 500 KIAS (Knots Indicated Air Speed). You'll need all of the energy you can get for maneuvering when the SAMs start flying. The approach from the initial point (IP) to target was planned to achieve the best target aspect angle and time enough to perform the system attack. About 15 nm out, the B/N selects the Master Arm and tells you the pickle is Hot. You both review the weapons control panel to ensure the proper stations and type of system attack are selected. The plan is to stay low, so you ensure the bombs are set up to