Check out these interesting shots of a Viper from the 149th Fighter Wing with the “new” paint that has replaced the older two-tone gray as the standard paint scheme for USAF F-16s.
The U.S. Air Force has just released an interesting series of shots of an F-16 from the 149th Fighter Wing, Texas Air National Guard out of the Iowa Air National Guard Paint Facility in Sioux City with what is said to be “a new, darker single color paint scheme […] that eliminates the older two-tone grey as the standard paint scheme for F-16’s in the U.S. Air Force.”
Indeed, the aircraft seems to show the Have Glass V, or “Have Glass 5th generation” paint, i.e. the evolution of the standard Have Glass program that saw all the F-16s receiving a two-tone grey color scheme made with a special radar-absorbing paint capable to reduce the aircraft Radar Cross Section. Indeed, all “Vipers” are covered with RAM (Radar Absorbent Material) made of microscopic metal grains that can degrade the radar signature of the aircraft. The Have Glass V is the latest version of the special paint, somehow similart to the one of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter that has been applied to U.S. F-16s since at least 2012 when it started to appear on the F-16CM (formerly CJ) Block 50 Fighting Falcon aircraft.
Many Squadrons, including the 64th AGRS (Aggressor Squadron) at Nellis Air Force Base, the South Dakota ANG 175th Fighter Squadron and 85th TES at Eglin AFB, Florida, fly or have flown Vipers painted with the new darker color scheme. However, it’s worth noticing a slight variant in the latest aircraft from the Texas ANG: while all the other Have Glass V we have seen thus far have a radome painted in “normal” F-16 paint and color, the 149th FW’s Viper seems to have a darker radome. Moreover, unlike all the others, the two-letter tail code, serial number and squadron markings are black in color, instead of light grey.
Check the following images for comparison: