Euro Typhoon Fighter, EF2000
The EFA program began in 1983 when France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and the UK agreed to develop a common air superiority fighter for the 21st century. France eventually pulled out of the program, as Germany almost did in 1992. The result of this effort, originally known as the Eurofighter 2000, is the Typhoon built jointly by British Aerospace, DASA, CASA, and Alenia. The Typhoon is optimized for the air defense mission but also has a secondary ground attack capability. With its powerful advanced engines and canards, the aircraft is highly manueverable and capable of short takeoffs and landings. Despite significant delays due to escalating costs and political problems, the prototype EF2000 first flew in March 1994 and is planned to enter service in 2000. As of 1994, about 600 are to be built--250 for Britain, 120 for Germany, 130 for Italy, and 87 for Spain.
The four-nation Eurofighter Typhoon is a foreplane delta-wing, beyond-visual-range, close air fighter aircraft with surface attack capability. Eurofighter has 'supercruise' capability: it can fly at sustained speeds of over Mach 1 without the use of afterburner.
Development of the aircraft has been carried out by Eurofighter GmbH, based in Munich and wholly owned by BAE Systems of the UK, Alenia Aeronautica of Italy and the EADS Deutschland (formerly DaimlerChrysler) and EADS Spain (formerly CASA). In January 2003, Norway signed an agreement for industrial participation in the project, but has not committed to purchase of the fighter. The EJ200 engine has been developed by Eurojet GmbH, in Munich which is owned by Rolls Royce, MTU Aero Engines, Fiat Aviazione and ITP.
An overall production contract for 620 aircraft was signed in January 1998, with 232 for the UK, 180 for Germany, 121 for Italy and 87 for Spain. Initial orders have been placed for 148 aircraft: Germany (44), Italy (29), Spain (20) and the UK (55). Prime customer is the NATO Eurofighter and Tornado Management Agency (NETMA), representing the four governments. Series production of the aircraft is underway at EADS Military Aircraft (Germany), BAE Systems, Alenia Aeronautica and EADS CASA (Spain). The first four series production aircraft for the four participating nations took maiden flights in February 2003 and the Eurofighter received type acceptance, a prerequisite for entry into service, by the four services on 30 June 2003. First series production aircraft were delivered to the German Air Force in August 2003, to the Spanish Air Force in September 2003, to the UK Royal Air Force in December 2003 and to the Italian Air Force in February 2004.
Germany, Italy and Spain have already committed to Tranche 2 production. The UK is expected to make a decision by the end of 2004. Tranche 2 is expected to comprise 236 aircraft - Germany 68, Italy 46, Spain 33 and UK 89. Final deliveries are scheduled for 2015.
Greece has also chosen to join the Eurofighter programme but has decided to delay its acquisition of 60 aircraft until 2005. Austria signed a contract for 18 Eurofighter aircraft in August 2003, to be delivered from 2007.
In June 2004, two UK RAF Typhoons flew to Singapore for evaluation by the Singapore Air Force.
The aircraft is constructed of carbon fire composites, glass-reinforced plastic, aluminium lithium, titanium and aluminium casting. Stealth technology features includelow frontal radar cross-section, passive sensors and supercruise ability.
The foreplane/delta configuration is intentionally aerodynamically unstable which provides a high level of agility (particularly at supersonic speeds), low drag and enhanced lift. The pilot controls the aircraft through a computerised digital fly-by-wire system which provides artificial stabilisation and gust elevation to give good control characteristics throughout the flight envelope.
The pilot's control system is a voice-throttle-and-stick system (VTAS). The stick and throttle tops house 24 fingertip controls for sensor and weapon control, defence aids management, and inflight handling. The direct voice input allows the pilot to carry out mode selection and data entry procedures using voice command.
The BAE Systems Striker Helmet Mounted Symbology System (HMS) and Head Up Display show the flight reference data, weapon aiming and cueing, and the FLIR imagery. BAE Systems TERPROM ground proximity warning system is being fitted. The cockpit has three multifunction, colour, head-down displays (MHDDs), which show the tactical situation, systems status and map displays. An international consortium EuroMIDS, which includes Data Link Solutions of the US, supplies the MIDS Low Volume Terminal provides Link 16 capability for secure transfer of data.
The internally-mounted Mauser BK27mm gun is a revolver gun system with a linkless-closed ammunition feed system. The EurofighterTyphoon has 13 hard points for weapon carriage, four under each wing and five under the fuselage. An Armament Control System (ACS) manages weapons selection and firing and monitors weapon status.
Depending on role, the fighter can carry the following mix of missiles: air-superiority - six BVRAAM (Beyond Visual Range)/AMRAAM air-to-air missiles on semi-recessed fuselage stations and two ASRAAM short-range air-to-air missiles on the outer pylons; air interdiction - four AMRAAM, two ASRAAM, two cruise missiles and two anti-radar missiles (ARM); SEAD (Suppression of Enemy Air Defences) - four AMRAAM, two ASRAAM, six anti-radar missiles; multi-role - three AMRAAM, two ASRAAM, two ARM and two GBU-24 Paveway III/IV; close air support - four AMRAAM, two ASRAAM, 18 Brimstone anti-armour missiles; maritime attack - four AMRAAM, two ASRAAM, six anti-ship missiles.
The UK RAF has selected MBDA (formerly Matra BAe Dynamics) Meteor for the BVRAAM requirement and Raytheon AMRAAM until Meteor enters service. Meteor uses a new air-breathing ramjet motor for increased range and manoeuvrability. AMRAAM will be fitted from 2002 and Meteor around 2010. German, Italian and Spanish Eurofighters will carry the imaging infrared IRIS-T air-to-air missile being developed by BGT of Germany, expected to enter service in 2005. RAF Eurofighters will carry the MBDA Storm Shadow/Scalp EG stand-off cruise missile, which entered operational service on Tornado aircraft in March 2003, and also the MBDA Brimstone anti-armour missile due to enter service by the end of 2004.
The aircraft's defensive aids sub-system (DASS) is accommodated within the aircraft structure and integrated with the avionics system. DASS has been developed by the EuroDASS consortium - BAE Systems Avionics of the UK (prime contractor), Elettronica of Italy and Indra of Spain. The consortium was rejoined in October 2001 by EADS, after the German Federal Ministry of Defence contracted to re-enter the programmme. DASS provides an all-round prioritised assessment of threats with fully automatic response to single or multiple threats. DASS includes an electronic countermeasures/support measures system (ECM/ESM), front and rear missile approach warners, supersonically capable towed decoy systems, laser warning receivers and SaabTech Electronics BOL chaff and flare dispensing system. The avionics system is based on a NATO standard databus with fibre optic highways.
The aircraft is equipped with a CAPTOR (ECR 90) multi-mode X-band pulse Doppler radar, developed by the Euroradar consortium. The multi-mode radar has three processing channels. The third channel is used for jammer classification, interference blanking and sidelobe nulling. Euroradar is led by BAE Systems, with Indra of Spain, FIAR of Italy and EADS Defence Electronics of Germany.
The PIRATE (Passive Infra-Red Airborne Track Equipment) is mounted on the port side of the fuselage, forward of the windscreen. PIRATE has been developed by the EUROFIRST consortium which comprises Galileo Avionica (FIAR) of Italy (lead contractor), Thales Optronics of the UK (system technical authority) and Tecnobit of Spain. PIRATE operates in both 3-5 and 8-11 micron spectral bands. When used with the radar in an air-to-air role, it functions as an Infrared Search and Track system (IRST), providing passive target detection and tracking. In an air-to-surface role, it performs multiple target acquisition and identification, as well as providing a navigation and landing aid. PIRATE provides a steerable image to the pilot's helmet-mounted display.
The Eurofighter is equipped with two Eurojet EJ200 engines, each delivering thrust of 90kN in full reheat and 60kN in dry power mode. Single-stage turbines drive the three-stage fan and five-stage HP compressor. The engine features: digital control; wide chord aerofoils and single crystal turbine blades; a convergent /divergent exhaust nozzle; and integrated health monitoring.
May 2013, British fighter jets escorted a Pakistan International Airlines passenger aircraft from outside Manchester to Stansted airport following an onboard incident. The MoD said Typhoon jets were scrambled to escort flight PK709 after a distress signal was given. Two people have been arrested. The flight was originally flying from Lahore in Pakistan to Manchester. The RAF said that a jet was scrambled from RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire to escort the plane into Stansted - the UK's designated counter-terrorism airport. The aircraft was reported to be carrying 257 passengers. An image from FlightRader24 of the aircraft's flightpath shows the plane going off-course and circulating over the UK before heading towards London.
25.79 ft2 (2.40 m2)
14,330 lb (6,500 kg)
26,980 lb (120 kN)
+9.0 / -3.0
ECM pods (?)