Royal Australian Air Force Aircraft
F/A-18A/B Hornet

The Royal Australian Air Force F/A-18A/B Hornet is a multi-role fighter designed for both air-to-air and air-to-ground missions. Both the single seat F/A-18A and two seat F/A-18B Hornets are capable of air interception, air combat, close air support of ground troops, and interdiction of enemy supply lines including shipping.

The F/A-18A/B Hornet is operated by:

  • No 3 Squadron, RAAF Base Williamtown.
  • No 75 Squadron, RAAF Base Tindal.
  • No 77 Squadron, RAAF Base Williamtown
  • No 2 Operational Conversion Unit, RAAF Base Williamtown for pilot training


The Hornet is capable of air-to-air refuelling from the new KC-30A Multi-Role Tanker Transport.

Air Force’s 71 F/A-18A/B Hornets will be replaced with 72 fifth-generation F-35A aircraft  from 2018.
The Hornet was developed for the US Navy and Marine Corps and has been a very successful aircraft. It is also used by Canada, Finland, Kuwait, Malaysia, Spain and Switzerland. The fleet has just undergone a major avionics upgrade to ensure effective operations for the next 10 to 15 years.

Weapons
  • AIM-120 Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missile (AMRAAM)
  • AIM-132 Advanced Short Range Air-to-Air Missile (ASRAAM)
  • Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM)
  • AGM-158 Joint Air-to-Surface Stand-off Missile (JASSM)
  • M61 20mm nose-mounted cannon

 

Manufacturer Boeing (originally McDonnell-Douglas)
Role Multi-role fighter
Crew Pilot
Engine Two low-bypass F404-GE-400 turbofans (7,258kg thrust each)
Airframe Length: 17.1 m, height: 4.7 m
Wingspan 12.4 m
Weight 10,660 kg basic, 20,412 kg maximum
Speed Mach 1.8 (2,200km/h)
Range
  • Ferrying 2,700 km (without refuelling)
  • Interdiction over 1,000 km
  • Combat radius 740 km
Ceiling Above 45,000 feet
Weapons
  • AIM-120 Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missile (AMRAAM)
  • AIM-132 Advanced Short Range Air-to-Air Missile (ASRAAM)
  • Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM)
  • AGM-158 Joint Air-to-Surface Stand-off Missile (JASSM)
  • M61 20 mm nose-mounted cannon
Avionics
  • Hughes APG73 multi-mode radar
  • GPS
  • Inertial navigation system
  • VHF omni-directional range/instrument landing system
  • Two mission computers
  • Head-up cockpit display
  • Multi-functional displays