It is a two-seat, twin-engine, multiple role fighter, predominantly used for interception and reconnaissance missions (RF-4E). It is yet another US airplane and production deliveries for the USAF began in November 1963. US F-4s were tested in battle in the Arab-Israeli conflicts of 1973 and 1982 as well as in the Vietnam War and suffered heavy casualties as dozens of them were downed by Soviet SAM (Surface to Air Missiles).
The Phantom entered service with the HAF in 1974 under the arms programme “Peace Icarus”. Although it is a second-generation aircraft, 36 Hellenic Phantoms have been upgraded with advanced electronics (programme “Peace Icarus 2000”), extending their operational life. They are based in Andrabida air base (117 Combat Wing, 338 and 339 Squadrons with call signs “Aris” and “Aias” respectively) and in Larissa air base (110 Combat Wing, 337 and 348 Squadrons “Ghost” and “Eyes” respectively). After the upgrade programme, all the Hellenic F-4Es wear the “Aegean Ghost” camouflage while all The Hellenic RF-4Es wear the “Vietnam” camouflage.
- Crew: 2
- Engine: 2 General Electric J-79 turbojet engines with afterburners, 17,900 lbs.
- Wing Span: 11.7 m
- Length: 19.1 m
- Maximum Speed: 2,2 Mach
- Service Ceiling: 50,000 ft