Air power was the decisive factor that led to the military defeat of Nazi Germany. The Nazi’s lost most of the military aircraft of the Luftwaffe over Britain and the Americans were able to penetrate deep into Germany with strategic bombers. This enabled us to destroy the German military-industrial complex and win the war.

In more modern conflicts, air power has been responsible for the extremely low casualty rates of both Gulf Wars and the conflict in Afghanistan.

Air power shows no sign of becoming less important in the near future, but the nature of air power is constantly changing. The coordination of air and land capabilities has been taken to a level of previously unimaginable perfection by the United States military. The future of military aviation, however, may lead us to deploying less-expensive remotely piloted or even pilotless drone aircraft, which will lead to even further improvement in our casualty numbers.

The United States currently maintains the world lead in military aircraft technology. The best military aircraft in almost every category is a product of the United States military-industrial complex. Boeing and Lockheed-Martin have become more than manufacturers of military aircraft — they have become critical national resources for achieving American objectives across the globe.

Military Aircraft Database

Ground-Attack, Close Air Support, and Fighter-bomber Aircraft

A-4 Skyhawk

A-6 Intruder

A-7 Corsair II

A-10 Thunderbolt II

A-37 Dragonfly

Alpha Jet


AV-8B Harrier II




F-4 Phantom II

F-5 Freedom Fighter / Tiger II

F-16 Fighting Falcon

F/A-18 Hornet

F-104 Starfighter

F-111 Aardvark

F-117A Night Hawk

Fantan A Q-5






L-39 Albatross

Magister CM 170

MB 326

MB 339A

MiG-17 Fresco

MiG-21 Fishbed

MiG 27 Flogger D

MiG-29 Fulcrum

Mirage III / 5

Mirage F1


Su-7B Fitter A

Su-17 / Su-20 Su-22 Fitter

Su-24 Fencer

Su-25 Frogfoot

Super Etendard

Tornado IDS

Viggen AJ-37

Yak-28 Brewer

Yak-38 Forger

Air Superiority and Interceptor Aircraft

F-14 Tomcat

MiG-25 Foxbat

Su-15 Flagon

F-15 Eagle

MiG-19 Farmer

MiG-23 Flogger B

MiG-31 Foxhound

Mirage 2000

Su-27 Flanker

Tornado ADV

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B-1B Lancer




Il-28 Beagle

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BO 105

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CH-46 Sea King

CH-47 Chinook

CH-53 Sea Stallion

Dauphin 2

Defender 500


Hirundo A109

Ka-50 Hokum


Mangusta A129

Mi-1 Hare

Mi-2 Hoplite

Mi-4 Hound

Mi-6 Hook

Mi-8 Hip

Mi-24 Hind

Mi-26 Halo

Mi-28 Havoc

OH-6A Cayuse

OH-13 Sioux

OH-58D Kiowa


Scout, Wasp

SH-3 Sea King

Super Frelon

UH-1 Iroquois

UH-1N Model 212

UH-60 Blackhawk

Cargo and Transport Aircraft

An-124 Condor

An-12 Cub

An-24 Coke and An-26 Curl

An-32 Cline

An-72 Coaler

Aviocar C-212

Buffalo C-8A

C-123 Provider

C-130 Hercules

C-141 Starlifter

C-160 Transall

C-17 Globemaster III

C-5 Galaxy

Caribou C-7A

DC-3 Dakota


Il-14 Crate

Il-76 Candid

Early Warning, Observation, and Reconaissance Aircraft

A-50 Mainstay

E-2C Hawkeye

E-3A Sentry

EA-6B Prowler

EF-111A Raven

Il-20 Coot-A

Nimrod AEW3

OV-1 Mohawk

P-3C Orion

S-2 Tracker

S-3A Viking

Utility Aircraft

An-2 Colt

C-12 Super King Air B200

C-23A Sherpa

King Air

O-1 Bird Dog

O-2 Skymaster

OV-10 Bronco



Skyvan 3M

U-6A Beaver

U-8F Seminole Queen Air

UV-18A Twin Otter

Unmanned Aerial Vehicles and Cruise Missiles

Apache CWS

AS-15 Kent

AS-4 Kitten

Banshee BTT-3

BQM-34 Firebee-II





DR-3 Reys



MK-105 Flash

MK-106 Hit

Model 324

Model 410



SHMEL-1 Yak-061


Tomahawk AGM-86

Military Aircraft by Country

Russian Military Aircraft

German Military Aircraft

Iranian Military Aircraft

Further Reading on Military Aircraft

Air Power

Essay on the growth of the importance of air power.

Air Power - The Future of Conflict

Essay on the use of air power in the 21st Century.

The Development of Spy Planes

Essay on the development and history of spy planes, including the U-2 and SR-71.

The Invention of the Aircraft Carrier

Essay on the history of aircraft carriers.

The Cutting Edge

A Half Century of U.S. Fighter Aircraft R&D.

Competition in the U.S. Fixed-Wing Military Aircraft Industry

This report examines the future of the U.S. military aircraft industrial base. It addresses specific questions that relate to the ability of the United States to preserve and retain adequate competition and innovation in the design and manufacture of its military aircraft. It also examines a broader set of issues related to changes under way in the U.S. military aircraft industry, in the sources of innovation, and in the types of capabilities DoD likely will need in order to adequately respond to a range of new and evolving threats in the future.

Russia’s Aerospace Industry: Military Aircraft

Throughout the post-war period, the Soviet military aircraft sector received resources sufficient to encourage development and allow production of the equipment needed to keep the Soviet Air Force’s inventory up to, and sometimes ahead of, world standards. Particularly with fighter and bomber development, rival designs were built and trialled, often with a series of prototypes engaged in competitive programmes. In some cases, designs were apparently based on western analogues, but in many projects the operational parameters that applied were derived from the unusal geophysical characteristics of ‘Mother Russia’ herself. The huge landmass of the Soviet Union required aircraft with long range. Many airfields were equipped with poorly surfaced runways, so robust landing gear was essential.

The Web’s Leading Military Aviation Resource

Fighter Planes

100 different fighter planes with their technical information and picture

Warplane Database

Military aircraft database from How to Make War

Air Power

The website for Defence… and those who support Defence (Australian)

Fighter Tactics Academy

Non-Profit Organization to maintain and develop knowledge and skills in fighter aircraft tactics

F/A-22 Raptor

The U.S. Advanced Tactical Fighter (ATF)

Air Force Link Fact Sheets on all Air Force aircraft

Introduction to Aircraft Design

Introduction to aircraft design, including military aircraft.

Globemaster US Military Aviation Database

Extensive database of information on US Military Aviation.

American Air Power The Air Campaign Wings That Stay On How Effective is Strategic Bombing?
Purchase these excellent books on military aircraft at
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