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Figure 10-2 Combat Spread

 

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CHAPTER TEN
BASIC FIGHTER MANEUVERS (BFM)
flexibility allowing both aircraft to provide mutual support while maintaining excellent
maneuverability.
The basic concept is that the two aircraft fly with enough separation so they cannot be attacked
as a single unit, but close enough so as not to lose sight of each other. The three variables to the
combat spread position are bearing, distance abeam, and altitude separation. Of these three
variables, bearing is by far the most critical. The distance abeam varies with aircraft size and
turning performance, with additional consideration given to threat aircraft size (visual
detectability.) Figure 10-2 demonstrates the standard combat spread formation.
Figure 10-2 Combat Spread
Combat Spread PADS:
P - Abeam
A - Lead: 12,000 feet; Wing: 13,500 feet
D - 1 NM
S - 250 KIAS
1003. LOOKOUT DOCTRINE
An effective lookout doctrine is the cornerstone of mutual support. Most air-to-air kills in
combat were achieved through complete surprise. The abeam position with the lateral separation
used in combat spread affords the maximum visual coverage of the flight's rear hemisphere (the
high threat area). Figure 10-3 illustrates the pilot and NFO lookout responsibilities. While the
pilot is responsible for the area forward of the wingline, the NFO should direct his visual search
from deep six o'clock to the abeam position inside the section. This scan pattern covers outside
both sides of the section, and double covers the inside of the section. Remember to scan all
altitudes. Be sure to focus your eyeballs on the horizon (or a distant object). This ensures you
are not staring at the glass of the canopy and unable to see objects outside the cockpit.
10-10
BASIC FIGHTER MANEUVERS (BFM)


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