Hobby Master 1-72 Air Power
HA2629 AV-8B Harrier II Plus 165421, VMA-214 "Black Sheep", USMC, Afghanistan, November 2009

The AV-8B II + is the second generation of Harriers. Using its VSTOL (Vertical and Short Take Off Landing) abilities the Harrier is capable of using almost any surface to attack and destroy air or ground targets. Armed with conventional or specific weapons the AV-8B II + can be used in or night. The AV-8B II + can be air refueled allowing it to be deployed for extended periods.

Marine Squadron 214 was commissioned in 1942 as the “Swashbucklers”. On September 7, 1943 VMF-214 was formed under the guidance of Major “Pappy” Boyington and given the name “Black Sheep”. Back then the squadron was equipped with Corsairs. In 1957 the VMF was changed to VMA-214. In 2000, using the wings and tail from AV-8B 162731 as well as a new fuselage and engine they created AV-8B Harrier II+ 165421. In 2009 the “Black Sheep” were deployed to Kandahar from May until November.

Specifications for the AV-8B+ (Harrier II Plus)
Developed by - Boeing, BAE Systems, and Rolls Royce
Operators – USMC, Italian Navy, Spanish Navy
Crew – (1) pilot
Performance
Powerplant – 1 X Rolls-Royce Pegasus 11-61 (F402-RR-408) (Mk 105) vectored-thrust turbofan engine, 23,500 lbf (105 kN)
Maximum speed @ sea level - .89 Mach (662 mph) (1,070 km/h)
Range – 1,200 nm (1,400 mi) (2,200 km)
Combat radius - 300 nmi (556 km)
Ferry range - 1,800 nmi (3,300 km)
Rate of climb - 14,700 ft/min (4,485 m/min)
Dimensions
Length - 46 ft 4 in (14.12 m)
Wingspan - 30 ft 4 in (9.25 m)
Height - 11 ft 8 in (3.55 m)
Wing area - 243.4 ft² (22.61 m²)
Weight
Empty - 13,968 lb (6,340 kg)
Loaded - 22,950 lb (10,410 kg)
Max takeoff – Rolling / 31,000 lb (14,100 kg)
Vertical / 20,755 lb (9,415 kg)
Armament
Guns – (1) X GAU-12U "Equalizer" 25 mm (0.98 in) cannon with 300 rounds of ammunition.
Hardpoints – (7) capable of carrying up to 13,200 lb (STOVL) of ordnance such as iron bombs, cluster bombs, napalm canisters, laser-guided bombs, AGM-65 Maverick or AGM-84 Harpoon missiles, Sea Eagle missiles, a LITENING targeting pod, up to (4) AIM- 9 Sidewinder or similar-sized infrared-guided missiles, up to (4) AIM-120 AMRAAM missiles, as well as new “Smart Weapons” such as JDAM (Joint Direct Attack Munition). Avionics Raytheon APG-65 pulse Doppler radar