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‘Brrt!’: How A-10 Warthog Pilots Practice Killing Bad Guys

Seeing the Warthog operate in its native environment is so amazing it can make a grown man cry.

In this video of a recent training exercise, you’ll see the A-10 in action, firing 14 rockets and 18 AGM-65 Maverick missiles, and also using its 30 mm GAU-8 Avenger canon (which fires at a rate of 3,900 rounds per minute). The A10 can also drop GBU bombs. You get a good look at the inside of the aircraft, including the cockpit that is protected by a titanium bathtub that envelops it.

About the A-10 Warthog

There have been more than 700 A-10 “warthog” aircraft built. Someone had found the design so ugly they named it the warthog, but the airplane’s visual appeal is largely a matter of taste. The last warthog was constructed in 1984. The warthog’s official name is the Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II. It is a single seater, twin engine, fighter jet, with a maximum speed of 439 miles per hour, and a service ceiling of 45,000 feet.

More than 700 A-10 Thunderbolt II aircraft were built between 1972 and 1984. The per unit cost of an A10 Thunderbolt II is an estimated $18.8 million. The A-10 is extremely tough, able to withstand direct hits from armor-piercing, highly explosive missiles. The cockpit is surrounded by 1,200 pounds of titanium armor, capable of stopping powerful direct hits.

The warthog has seen action in Operation Desert Shield, Operation Desert Storm, OIF and OEF. The Warthog remains in service today in the Middle East working to defeat ISIS in Iraq and Syria.

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