The Phantom II is a supersonic, long range, all weather interceptor with full ground attack capability. In addition to service in our Navy, Marines, and Air Force, it was flown by the military of seven allied countries. The McDonnell production line started in September 1955 and continued until August 1979; 5,057 were built.

The Phantom II's first flight was on 27 May 1958. Flying Qualities and Performance (FQ&P) Navy Preliminary Evaluation (NPE) I took place in September 1958. Expanded envelope and carrier suitability tests in NPE II occurred in July 1959. The first Phantom II catapult shot and carrier landing was on 15 September 1960. First deliveries were made as follows: Navy, 29 December 1960; Marines, 29 June 1962; Air Force modified F-4B, February 1963: Air Force modified F-4C, May 1963; s, Air Force June 1964; Marine reconnaissance version, May 1965; , Navy Blue Angels flight demonstration team (F-4J model), 23 December 1968, and Air Force Thunderbirds flight demonstration team (F-4E model), 19 April 1969.

Many official records have been set, including world speed and altitude records of 1,606.48 MPH and 98,556 FT respectively. On 28 August 1961, a low altitude speed record of 902.72 MPH (Mach 1.2) was set over a 3-KM course, at a maximum altitude of 328 FT.

Our display aircraft, F-4J BuNo 153071 (Salty Dog 100), has spent its entire operational life involved in test and evaluation work. Its first flight was 28 June 1966 and it arrived at the Naval Air Test Center in February 1967. Over the years, it was specially instrumented and served as one of our primary aircraft carrier suitability testing and automatic carrier landing system development aircraft. It has landed on most of our aircraft carriers during its day, logged nearly 4,300 testing flight hours, and made 8,652 landings. Arrested landings and catapult shots were its specialty. It flew its last flight in August 1986 and joined our Patuxent River Naval Air Museum stable in March 1987.

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