The U.S. State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to the Government of Bulgaria of F-16 C/D Block 70 Fighters and related equipment for an estimated cost of $1.673 billion. The proposed sale will improve Bulgaria’s capability to meet current and future threats by enabling the Bulgarian Air Force to deploy modern fighter aircraft routinely in the Black Sea region. The acquisition of these aircraft would provide Bulgaria a NATO interoperable platform and allow the Bulgarian Air Force to operate more frequently alongside other regional F-16 operators, promoting common doctrine and operations. In 2019, Bulgaria agreed and paid in full for the $1.2 billion (1.1 billion euro) purchase of eight F-16 Block 70 fighter jets from the U.S. The deal envisages the delivery of six single-seat F-16 jets and two two-seat aircraft to be used for training, as well as supply of weapons for the aircraft. In 2020, the U.S. defence department said that the production of all eight F16s is expected to be completed by January 31, 2027. The principal contractor will be Lockheed Martin, Greenville, South Carolina. Implementation of this proposed sale will require the assignment of U.S. contractor representatives to Bulgaria for a duration of thirty-six (36) months to support secure storage requirements of critically controlled assets and provide on-site contractor logistics support.
The F-16 will ensure Bulgarian national security and provide long-term capability development for the Bulgarian Air Force. The F-16 Block 70 features technologies developed for the 5th Generation F-35 Lightning II and F-22 Raptor fighters yet provides a proven, capable, low-risk and cost effective solution for Bulgaria’s national and NATO defense needs. While the F-16 name stays the same, the latest-generation Block 70 is a totally different jet – part of a total solution package that will provide Bulgaria with one of the most advanced and capable fighter aircraft in service with NATO in Europe. Equipped with a modern suite of weapons, included in our pricing, it will provide much more than a basic air policing capability. The F-16 Block 70 combines capability upgrades, most notably the advanced Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar with a new avionics architecture, and structural upgrades to extend the structural life of the aircraft by more than 50 percent beyond that of previous production F-16 aircraft. Operational capabilities are enhanced through an advanced datalink, targeting pod and weapons; precision GPS navigation, and the life-saving Automatic Ground Collision Avoidance System (Auto GCAS). In addition to providing a highly advanced and capable fighter aircraft, Lockheed Martin is redoubling its commitment to delivering economic and industrial benefits to Bulgaria. Lockheed Martin has customers in more than 50 countries worldwide and understands the importance of partnership and will work with the U.S. and Bulgarian governments to identify cost savings for the F-16 Block 70 as the acquisition process continues.
The Government of Bulgaria has requested to buy four (4) F-16 C Block 70 aircraft; four (4) F-16 D Block 70 aircraft; eleven (11) F100-GE-129D engines (8 installed, 3 spares); eleven (11) Improved Programmable Display Generators (iPDG) (8 installed, 3 spares); eleven (11) AN/APG-83 Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) Scalable Agile Beam Radars (SABR) (8 installed, 3 spares); eleven (11) Modular Mission Computers (MMC) 7000AH (8 installed, 3 spares); eleven (11) LN-260 or equivalent Embedded Global Positioning System (GPS) Inertial Navigation Systems (INS) (EGI) with Selective Availability Anti-Spoofing Module (SAASM) and Precise Positioning Service (PPS) (8 installed, 3 spares); nineteen (19) Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missile (AMRAAM) AIM-120C-7/C-8 or equivalent missiles; two (2) AMRAAM Guidance Sections; forty-eight (48) LAU-129A launchers (40 installed, 8 spares); twenty-eight (28) GBU-39/B Small Diameter Bombs (SDBs); two (2) SDB Guided Test Vehicles (GTVs); eleven (11) M61A1 Vulcan Cannons (8 installed, 3 spares); four (4) AN/AAQ-33 Sniper Advanced Targeting Pods (ATPs); twelve (12) Multifunctional Information Distribution System with Joint Tactical Radio Systems (MIDS-JTRS); twenty (20) AIM-9X Block II missiles; eight (8) AIM-9X Block II Captive Air Training Missiles (CATMs); four (4) AIM-9X Block II Tactical Guidance Units; four (4) AIM-9X Block II CATM Guidance Units; twenty-four (24) FMU-139 or FMU-152 fuze systems; twelve (12) KMU-572 Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM) Tail Kits for 500LB GBU-38 or Laser JDAM GBU-54; twelve (12) MXU-650 Air Foil Groups (AFGs) for Enhanced Paveway II EGBU-49; twelve (12) MAU-210 Enhanced Computer Control Groups (ECCGs) for EPII EGBU-49; twenty-four (24) MK-82 or BLU-111 or equivalent Bomb Bodies; six (6) MK-82 Inert Bombs; and two (2) GBU-39 SDB I Practice Bombs.
Also included are AN/ARC-238 radios; AN/APX-126 or equivalent Advanced Identification Friend or Foe (AIFF) with Combined Interrogator Transponders (CIT); Joint Helmet Mounted Cueing System II (JHMCS II) or Scorpion Hybrid Optical-based Inertial Tacker (HObIT) helmet mounted displays; AN/ALQ-254 Viper Shield or equivalent Electronic Warfare (EW) systems; AN/ALE-47 Countermeasure Dispenser Systems (CMDS), KY-58M Cryptographic Devices, KIV-78 Cryptographic Devices, and Simple Key Loaders (SKLs); Joint Mission Planning Systems (JMPS) or equivalent; AIM-120 Captive Air Training Missiles (CATM); PGU-28 High Explosive Incendiary (HEI) ammunition; PGU-27 training rounds (non HEI); ARD-446 impulse cartridges; ARD-863 impulse cartridges; BBU-36/B impulse cartridges; BBU-35/B impulse cartridges; MK-124 smoke flares; MJU-7/B flare cartridges L463 or MJU-53 or equivalent; Common Munitions Built-in-Test (BIT) Reprogramming Equipment (CMBRE); ADU 890 adapter for CMBRE; ADU-891 adapter for CMBRE; Night Vision Devices (NVD); NVD Spare Image Intensifier Tubes; Remote Operated Video Enhanced Receiver (ROVER) 6i units; Tactical Network ROVER Kit; DSU-38 laser sensors for GBU-54; Cartridge Actuated Device/Propellant Actuated Devices (CADs/PADs); GBU-39 tactical training rounds; BRU-57 bomb racks; BRU-61 bomb racks; MAU-12 bomb racks and TER-9A triple ejection racks; other chaff and flare.