North American F-100 Super Sabre

The Super Sabre was the first US Air Force (USAF) fighter capable of supersonic speed in level flight. It marked a radical step forward in design from North American’s first-generation jet fighter, the F-86 Sabre. Entering service with the USAF in November 1953, it had a 45-degree swept wing, an underfuselage speed brake, four 20mm cannon, and ranging radar in the upper lip of its oval nose air intake.
Designated the F-100 – the first of the USAF’s “century series*’ fighters – it was definitely an exciting aircraft, but it had defects. The F- 100A showed a fatal tendency to lose stability and was briefly grounded in1955 after a series of crashes. The problem was resolved by increasing the fin area of the succeeding F- 100 fighter-bomber, an aireraft which, on 20 August 1955, established the first supersonic world absolute speed record, at 822.135mph.
Next came the F-100D, the principal production version. equipped with an autopilot and adapted for in-flight refuelling.
During the Vietnam War F-100 proved too heavy and insufficiently agile to make good air-to-air combat aircraft, but were used extensively for ground-attack.
The Super Sabre was the first USAF aircraft employed in the “Wild Weasel” role to detect and destroy the radar systems of enemy surface to air missiles.

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