The F-16C as procured by the Navy was equipped with the lighter AN/APG-63 radar set as flown in the F-16A, was devoid of the M-61 Vulcan gun system, had a titanium vice steel wing spar as in other F-16s, and had twin lens pods on both sides of the intake to enlarge the relatively small radar cross section of the F-16. Any equipment not necessary for visual-range aerial combat was removed, enhancing their agility and dogfighting abilities.
These F-16s were designated F-16N, and twenty-two single seat aircraft and four twin seat, designated the TF-16N, were built for the US Navy and flown at its famous "TOPGUN" Navy Fighter Weapons School starting in 1987 as well as with VF-43, VF-45 and VF-126, which were still active duty Adversary squadrons at the time. Despite the Airframe being strengthened to cope with the continuous high-G loads associated with air combat manoeuvring, cracks were detected on the wings after only a few years of operation, leading to grounding of the Navy F-16 fleet by 1992 and complete retirement of the F-16N by 1994. In 2002 the Navy began to receive fourteen F-16A and F-16B models from AMARC at Davis-Monthan AFB that were brand new aircraft originally intended for Pakistan, but had been embargoed. All 14 are operated by NSAWC for use by TOPGUN ion addition to the F/A-18A aircraft already in operation at NAS Fallon.
Aggressor aircraft in the United States are typically painted in colorful camouflage schemes, matching the colors of many Russian aircraft and contrasting with the gray colors used in most operational US combat aircraft. Camouflage schemes that consist of many shades of blue (similar to those used in Sukhoi fighters) or of green and mostly-light brown (similar to the colors used in many Middle Eastern countries' combat aircraft) are most common.