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Название: McDonnell Douglas AV-8B Harrier II
Автор: Chesneau R.
The AV-8B Harrier II, without doubt, bears more than a passing resemblance to the Hawker P.1127, and has even more in common with the letter's offspring, the Hawker Siddeley Harrier, but almost everything about it is brand new; only the basic layout of the earlier aircraft has been retained, together with an improved version of its Rolls-Royce Pegasus vectored-thrust turbofan. The AV-8B is a brilliant compromise, taking a sound fundamental design and applying a quarter of a century of technological progress and fifteen years of operating experience to it. The new aircraft can carry more weapons, fly them further and offload them more accurately, with a reduced pilot workload; on the ground, it is easierto maintain, and its systems are said to be more reliable, improving even on the first-generation Harrier's impressive record. About the only way in which it is inferior to the older aircraft is that in 'clean' condition (ie with no external stores or pylons) it is some 40kt slower; on the other hand, an attack aircraft denuded of its warload is no real asset.