The F-4j variant of the of the legendary “PHANTOM II” was the evolutionary successor to the initial F-4B. Based on operational experience in ﬂeet service, virtually every system in the “J” was upgraded to create a more versatile combat aircraft. Signiﬁcant improvements included the addition of a fuselage fuel tank, improved AN/AWG-10 radar ﬁre control system, and updated J79-GE-10 turbojet engines. Increased weight saw the use of stronger main landing gear struts and wider main tires developed for the USAF F-4C. Bulges on the upper and lower wing surfaces were obvious changes Navy requirements for improved handling in landing lead to the development of slotted stabilators, ﬁxed leading edge ﬂaps and “blown” mid and outer leading edge ﬂaps dramatically improved takeoff and landing performance. The “J” marked the introduction of Martin-Baker H7 ejection seats.
Beginning in October of 1966, deliveries of the F-4J began. 522 examples were constructed and this type became a vaunted multi-mission weapons system in the skies over Vietnam. F-4J’s proved to be decisive air superiority even though the aircraft lacked an internal gun. Navy and Marines ﬁghter bomber squadrons equipped with the F-4J proved their capabilities during operation “Rolling Thunder” and redeployed in the spring of 1972 to establish air superiority in “Linebacker I” and “Linebacker II