March 16, 2010:
U.S. F-16 fighters are being equipped with satellite communications equipment. Currently, most F-16 pilots rely on line-of-sight (FM) radios. This means that, mountains, and other obstacles, can interfere, or block, communications with ground based radios and other low flying aircraft. Thus these obstacles can interfere with essential links to air bases, or ground units (especially air force ground controller teams). F-16s in Iraq have been among the first equipped with the new satellite comms, and it has made a big difference, and removed one more irritating and time consuming problem pilots often have to deal with.