#1688 HävLLv 31 F/A-18C Hornet print

HävLLv 31 F/A-18C Hornet print
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£10.00 €11.62 $12.40
43.8 cm x 29.2 cm
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F/A-18C Hornet
31 Sqn; Karelia Air Command
Finland - Air Force
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Squadron Print Lithograph No. 1688 - HN-431, F/A-18C Hornet, Fighter Squadron 31, Karelia Air Command, Kuopio, Finland.

Fighter Squadron 31 traces its origin directly from the renowned Fighter Squadron 24 of the wartime era, which was established in Antrea in 1918. Later that year, the squadron was transferred to Utti where it served before being relocated to its current location in Rissala in 1961. Throughout the years, the squadron’s main equipment has included the Fokker D.XXI, Brewster F2A-1, Messerschmitt Bf 109, and MiG-21. In 1996, Fighter Squadron 31 was equipped with the F-18 Hornet. Tactical operations began with the examination of the Hornet’s air combat capabilities. With the implementation of the national data-link, the focus shifted from visual range engagements and the use of four ship formations became standard. For the first time in 2000, the squadron participated in international exercises with English radio phraseology being simultaneously introduced. A transition from the metric measurement system to feet and knots was also quickly made. With the MLU 1 update in 2010, the squadron was equipped with new additions such as helmet-mounted cueing system, AIM-9X, and a new mapping system. In 2013, the first MLU 2 updated aircraft were received. Along with them came the air-to-ground capability and an internationally compatible Link 16 data-link system. Soon after the upgrades, the aircraft designation was changed to the F/A-18 Hornet. In 2014, Fighter Squadron 31 received personnel from Fighter Squadron 21 as it was merged into the Lynx Squadron as a part of the Air Force reform. In the 2010s, the number of international exercises increased and cooperation with the Swedish Air Force and Baltic air patrol units intensified. In 2021, a decision was made to replace the F/A-18 Hornet with the F-35 Lightning II. However, the Hornet has become more capable than ever due to technical upgrades and tactical improvements, and it will continue to secure Finnish airspace until 2030. The emblem of Fighter Squadron 31 features a black lynx, which was adopted as the symbol of its predecessor, Squadron 24, back in 1941 with the red and black colors of the emblem representing the Karelian heritage of the squadron. Since its formation, the squadron has consistently strived to improve, taken responsibility for its actions, and worked together as a team. The team spirit, professionalism, and traditions of Squadron 24 and Utti continue to live on in the operations of Fighter Squadron 31. Despite changes over the years, the principles of unity, discipline, and initiative remain at the core of the squadron’s operations, and the personnel are united by a shared purpose, trust, and the Finnish fighter spirit.