- When the Super Hornet became the main aircraft for the Blue Angels
- Upgraded aircrafts to the Hornet that Boeing is producing
Replacing the F-4 Phantom II and the A-7 Corsair II, the F/A-18 Hornet became the main aircraft for the Blue Angels since 1987. This airplane is the longest operating aircraft used by the Blue Hornets, thrilling air show audiences from all around the world. This aircraft delivers cutting edge capabilities necessary to modernize the Navy’s aircraft fleet around the country. This twin engine aircraft is larger and more advanced than the earlier models. The F/A-18 Super Hornet includes a rotary cannon and can carry missiles firing weapons and can carry up to five external fuel tanks and be configured as an airborne tanker by adding an air-to-air refueling system.
The Super Hornet was first ordered by the US Navy is 1992, conducting its first flight in 1995. This new addition to the Navys fleet had an improved radar, larger display, and several other avionic replacements to the earlier model. Boeing has been discussing the development of a Super Hornet Block III, featuring stealth capabilities and extended range as well as a next generation cockpit that features a 19 x 11 touch display. In 2018, Boeing was awarded a contract to convert nine single-seat F/A-18E Super Hornets and two F/A-18F two-seaters for Blue Angels use; these are to be completed by 2021