So you think you know the answer on who wins between the F-16V and the J-39E? Well let’s see if you agree with our resident expert, former F-16 pilot, and current SkunkWorks test pilot Nate “Buster” Jaros.

The rapidly approaching target is locked in the F-16V FCR (Fire Control Radar). Through his HUD (Heads-Up Display) and the JHMCS (Joint Helmet Mounted Cueing System) helmet the pilot can see a diamond hovering in space, right where the locked target should be.  However, it’s too soon to visually make out an aircraft. He squints, there is nothing to see but clouds and blue sky.

The FCR screen says something entirely different and much more ominous is out there. He is locked to a fast moving target, and it’s pointing straight at him. Hot aspect. The closure rate is fantastic, well over 1,000 knots.

His experience tells him that this is no cargo plane, it’s no apparition either. It’s got to be a fighter, and the other pilot is coming straight at him, certainly trying to kill him.

His RWR (Radar Warning Receiver) bleeps in his ear, and a symbol appears on the screen at the 12 o’clock position. The approaching bandit has locked up his Viper.