F-6 / J-6 (Jian-6 Fighter aircraft 6)
Based on the Russian MiG-19, the Chinese F-6 was inducted into the PAF in 1966 and is now at the end of its operational life. The F-6 was phased out by the year 2005. It is a twin-engined, supersonic, fighter-interceptor and light ground-attack bomber with good handling and manoeuvring capability. A total of 170 F-6s were inducted into the PAF but now only 49 remain in service. Of the original 170, some had been attritioned, some have been de-commissioned and put up on static displays around the country while one squadron has been sold to the Bangladesh Air Force. Currently, the F-6 forms part of PAF's No. 17 and No. 23 Squadrons.
The F-6 was originally designed as a day fighter. However, with time it came to be fitted with better avionics and armaments to transform it into a night-time fighter as well. Though this night-flying capability has not been tested in battle. Its primary duties are attack and reconnaissance. It has two to three powerful 30 mm cannons. These aircraft have attachments under their wings to carry the PAF AIM-9B and AIM-9L Sidewinder missiles for interception missions, with provision of more for external fuel tanks. The F-6 is technologically obsolete, but in a close-range turning engagement is still a formidable air-combat adversary as a result of its great agility and powerful cannon armament.
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