F-16 Inlet Vapor

C59F9240.jpgThere are some aerodynamic effects that always catch my eye when I am going through images and one of these is vapor forming in engine inlets. The combination of lower airspeed with high thrust settings and moisture can result in puffs of vapor forming in the inlet, either continuously or, more often, as little flashes of cloud. The F-16 can often demonstrate this phenomenon when taking off although the formation is a little way back in the inlet.

C59F9570.jpgOn a recent Red Flag, the F-16s were out in force and, since it wasn’t the hottest and driest day that Nellis can provide, they were getting a bit of vapor to show up. Here are a few of the jets squeezing the moisture out of the air (even though it is the opposite of squeezing that makes it happen!).

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