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Dassault Mirage V


Attack Aircraft / Fighter-Bomber Aircraft


The Dassault Mirage 5 fighter-bomber did not encounter the excellent global acceptance that the preceding Mirage III series managed.
Authored By: Staff Writer | Edited: 8/1/2019
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Specifications


Year: 1969
Status: Active, Limited Service
Manufacturer(s): Dassault Aviation - France
Production: 582
Capabilities:
Crew: 1
Length: 51.02 ft (15.55 m)
Width: 26.97 ft (8.22 m)
Height: 14.76 ft (4.5 m)
Weight (Empty): 15,763 lb (7,150 kg)
Weight (MTOW): 30,203 lb (13,700 kg)
Power: 1 x SNECMA Atar 09C afterburning turbojet engine developing 9,435lb thrust dry and up to 13,668lb of thrust with reheat.
Speed: 1,460 mph (2,350 kph; 1,269 kts)
Ceiling: 59,055 feet (18,000 m; 11.18 miles)
Range: 2,485 miles (4,000 km; 2,160 nm)
Rate-of-Climb: 36,600 ft/min (11,156 m/min)
Operators: Argentina; Belgium; Chile; Colombia; Ecuador; Egypt; France; Gabon; Israel (as the "Nesher"); Libya; Pakistan; Peru; Saudi Arabia; South Africa; United Arab Emirates; Venezuela; Zaire
The Dassault Mirage 5 saw the continuing evolution of the classic and successful Mirage III delta-winged platform introduced in 1961 (and detailed elsewhere on this site). Production of this aircraft saw 1,422 built in total and operators went on to range from Argentina to Zaire. The Mirage V was developed to help fulfill a new Israeli Air Force (IAF) requirement centered on a daytime, clear weather attack aircraft. As such, it was decided to essentially refine the existing Mirage IIIE production model for the specific role - and this meant that the Cyrano radar set and avionics kit were removed. The changes would help simplify both maintenance and operation of the new jet fighter, making for a cost-effective solution for the IAF.

The Israeli government contracted Dassault for a batch of 50 aircraft in September of 1966 and a prototype went airborne for the first time on May 19th, 1967. As finalized, the aircraft resembled the earlier Mirage III to an extent though it incorporated some slight changes to its design such as a relocated pitot tube and the introduction of two external hardpoints for broader weapons support. By and large, the form of the Mirage III was preserved including physical characteristics such as swept-back wing surfaces, a single vertical tail fin, single engine installation, and low-mounted delta wing planform.

Because of rising tensions across the Middle East theater, the French government (led by President Charles de Gaulle) was forced to restrict the sale of the new aircraft - now named the "Mirage 5" - to Israel through embargo in 1967 - this despite the aircraft having been paid for. With serial production already ongoing, it was decided to retain the new aircraft for French Air Force service and this begat the "Mirage 5F" designation upon formal introduction. The Israelis were refunded their paid portion for the aircraft batch and were forced to fulfill their strike role by other means.

It is suspected that Israeli industry went ahead and reproduced the Mirage 5 by way of blueprints in bringing about their IAI "Nesher" model while others claim collusion between the governments of France and Israel to have the Mirage 5 aircraft delivered in parts as a way around the embargo - the Israelis simply assembling the aircraft upon delivery. Regardless, the Mirage 5 went on to become another successful aircraft venture for the French Dassault concern though its ultimate production total reached just under 600 units - 582 to be exact; this compared to the over 1,400 Mirage IIIs realized.

The base attack platform was followed by a dedicated reconnaissance model in the "Mirage 5R" as well as the two-seat trainer-minded "Mirage 5D". It was also possible to upgrade the existing equipment to bring the fighter role back into the Mirage 5 - thus creating a more complete fighter-bomber form in the end. The simplicity of the aircraft also made it another favored Dassault product on the foreign market as overseas operators ultimately grew to include players from Abu Dhabi and Argentina to Venezuela and Zaire.

Belgium added to the growing production numbers (1968 onwards) through local manufacture of the Dassault 5 though now featuring U.S.-centric avionics. Chile accepted these as the Mirage "Elkan". Local production of the aircraft also stocked Belgian attack, reconnaissance, and training squadrons and twenty of these aircraft were upgraded locally before being sold off to Chile.

An uprated engine, new avionics set (with "Cyrano IV" radar system), and improved performance specifications produced the "Mirage 50" mark. However, this variant did not improve Dassault sales and was only taken on by Chile and Venezuela. Chilean Air Force aircraft were later upgraded through ENAER with help from Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI) to bring them to the "Pantera" standard (IAI previously brought about the Dassault-based "Kfir" for Israeli Air Force service - this aircraft is detailed elsewhere on this site).

As of this writing (2019), many Mirage 5s have been retired from front line service. The only active operators remaining are Ecuador, Gabon, and Pakistan. The Egyptian stock is slated for delivery to Pakistan to bolter numbers. Pakistan Air Force mounts have been modernized under the "Project ROSE" program.






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Armament



STANDARD:
2 x 30mm DEFA 552A internal automatic cannons.

OPTIONAL:
Up to 8,800 lb of externally-held ordnance across five hardpoints encompassing:

2 x AIM-9 "Sidewinder" OR Matra R550 "Magic short-ranged air-to-air missiles.
2 x Matra JL-100 19-shot rocket pods.
Conventional drop bombs.
Fuel Drop Tanks.
Reconnaissance Pods.

Variants / Models



• Mirage 5 - Base strike aircraft model; single-seat; sans radar fit.
• Mirage 5AD - Abu Dhabi export model; 12 examples
• Mirage 5EAD - Abu Dhabi export model; with radar; 14 examples.
• Mirage 5BA - Belgian local model; production by SABCA; U.S. avionics fit.
• Mirage 5COA - Colombian export model; 14 examples; later upgraded.
• Mirage 5D - Libyan export model; 53 examples
• Mirage 5F - French Air Force model; 50 examples
• Mirage 5G - Gabon export model; three examples
• Mirage 5G-2 - Gabon upgraded model; four examples.
• Mirage 5J - Israeli export model; never delivered; becoming Mirage 5F of French Air Force.
• Mirage 5M - Zaire export model; 14 examples completed though only eight delivered.
• Mirage 5MA "Elkan" - Upgraded Mirage 5BA by Belgium for Chile.
• Mirage 5P - Peruvian export model; 22 aircraft
• Mirage 5P "Mara" - Argentine export model; upgraded Mirage 5P.
• Mirage 5P3 - Peruvian upgraded model; 10 examples
• Mirage 5P4 - Peruvian upgraded model
• Mirage 5PA - Pakistan export model; sans radar fit; 28 examples.
• Mirage 5PA2 - Pakistan export model with radar (Cyrano); 28 examples.
• Mirage 5PA3 - Pakistan export model with radar (Agave)
• Mirage 5SDE - Egyptian export model; with radar and fighter-bomber capability; 54 examples.
• Mirage 5E2 - Egyptian export model; attack platform sans radar; 16 examples.
• Mirage 5V - Venezuelan export model; six examples
• Mirage 5R - Reconnaissance variant
• Mirage 5BR - Belgian reconnaissance mark; 27 examples
• Mirage 5COR - Colombian reconnaissance mark; 2 examples.
• Mirage 5DR - Libyan reconnaissance mark; 10 examples
• Mirage 5RAD - Abu Dhabi reconnaissance mark; three examples.
• Mirage 5SDR - Egyptian reconnaissance mark; six examples.
• Mirage 5Dx - Two-Seat Trainer variant
• Mirage 50 - Upgraded Mirage 5; fighter capabilities added to attack form; uprated engine; new avionics; optional radar fitting.
• Mirage 50C - Chilean export model with radar; six examples.
• Mirage 50FC - Chilean export model with new engines; eight examples.
• Mirage 50DC - Chilean export model; two-seat trainer; down-rated Atar engine.
• Mirage 50CN "Pantera" - Local Chilean upgrade with IAI assistance; canard foreplanes added; new Kfir-style nose; new avionics fit; 15 examples.
• Mirage 50EV - Venezuelan export model; upgraded with Atar 9K-50 engine and new avionics; radar equipped; 15 examples (some upgraded from existing).
• Mirage 50DV - Venezuelan export model; three examples
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