The F-16 Pilot Who Saved A Ground Troop With A Sonic Boom
The General Dynamics F-16 Fighting Falcon was first designed as an air superiority day fighter jet and later evolved into a very successful all-weather multirole fighter aircraft. Since its introduction, this fighter jet has been around for 43 years and is still used by a lot of countries to chase their enemies. This story is about an intelligent F-16 pilot who used this aircraft’s sonic boom as a cover for the friendly ground troops.
In March 2003, two F-16 fighter pilots were called to provide air support for 52 British ground troops, who were trapped between 500 Iraqi troops. It was an impossible survival situation for the friendly ground troops since they were outnumbered 10 to 1.
It was very dark when this incident happened and even pilots couldn’t see where the ground troops were using their night vision goggles making the situation worse.
The Iraqi troops started attacking the trapped British forces on the ground leaving them no choice and the F-16 pilots had to do something. Intelligent pilot Lt. Col. Ed Lynch reacted quickly and decided to climb to a high altitude and to do a high-speed dive which built a sonic boom around his aircraft when he approached the speed of sound.
When he was getting close to the ground he could break the barrier of sound and point a sonic boom to the ground where he thought the Iraqi troops were. This huge force on Iraqi troops made them believe that the jets were dropping bombs on them or firing missiles and they broke apart making an exit plan for friendly British troops.
The ground-friendly troops could get out safely. While the pilot was making the dive he was targeted by a missile and had to do maneuvers to escape them and pilot Lynch could know he was successful only after he returned to the base.