|Object Name:||F-14 DFCS Sew-On Badge|
|Year of Manufacture:||Unknown|
|Location:||Archive Object Store|
Digital Flight Control System
The Grumman F-14 Tomcat is a supersonic, twin-engine, two-seat, variable-sweep wing fighter aircraft. The F-14 was the first of the American teen-series fighters, which were designed incorporating the experience of air combat against MiG fighters during the Vietnam War. The F-14 first flew in December 1970 and made its first deployment in 1974 with the U.S. Navy aboard USS Enterprise and served as the U.S. Navy's primary maritime air superiority fighter, fleet defense interceptor and tactical aerial reconnaissance platform. Tomcat was retired from the U.S. Navy's active fleet on 22 September 2006. The F-14 Digital Flight Control System (DFCS) developed by GEC Marconi Avionics began fleet introduction in July 1999 with subsequent incorporation into all F-14A, B, and D variants. The DFCS has been a tremendous success story. The system greatly increases availability and provides enhanced recovery capability as well as significantly improves landing approach handling qualities. The new design even corrects many maintenance limitations of the old system including pitch feel switch failures and force link disconnects. The F-14 operational and maintenance departments have been pleasantly surprised not just by the significant improvements in flying qualities of the DFCS, but also the improvements in the safety, reliability, and maintainability of the DFCS versus the older analog AFCS it was designed to replace.
This embroidered sew-on badge portraying a Tom Cat and these badges were given away to flight crew, sub-contractors and visitors to Air Shows or often sold in souvenir shops.