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Typhoon Slowly Assumes Combat Roles in Italy

By TOM KINGTON, GROSSETO AIR BASE, Italy

It was only after landing his Eurofighter Typhoon on May 12 that Italian pilot Ivan Laudizi realized he had just flown the first real mission involving the flagship European fighter.

Laudizi’s jet was already in the air with a second Typhoon after a training scramble from Groseto Air Base when they were ordered to intercept a Tunisian A320 over Sicily. After climbing to 40,000 feet and reaching 0.9 Mach, the two aircraft arrived in 30 minutes, descending to 30,000 feet to make the intercept.

“It was pretty much like many other interceptions I have made, although this one was much easier,” he said, adding that this was no surprise since his last intercept was aboard an F-104.

By trading an aging Starfighter for the Typhoon, Laudizi personifies the dramatic break with the past that Italy has made in buying the new fighter.

As for the future, the air-defense emphasis the Italian Air Force is now putting on the Typhoon is driven by the expected arrival of the Joint Strike Fighter to take care of ground attack duties.

In the meantime, the 9th and 20th squadrons of the 4th Wing at Groseto have racked up flying hours since going on alert for the first time in December 2005, reaching 3,900 hours this month, said Col. Vincenzo Nuzzo, commanding officer of the 4th. A peak of 253 flying hours was reached in March.

The Eurofighter stable is now fluctuating around 22 aircraft as Typhoons return to Finmeccanica unit Alenia Aeronautica for upgrades. The first aircraft equipped with the Pirate Infra-Red Search and Track sensor will be delivered this summer, base officials said.

With 20 pilots now trained to alert level — each set to fly around 12.5 hours per month this year — and six more in training, the Air Force plans to have its Typhoons on alert status six days a month by June, rising to 15 days a month by June 2008, slowly taking over from the F-16s Italy has leased as a stopgap.

From October, the Air Force also plans to base its first Typhoon at its Gioia del Colle air base in southern Italy, providing faster coverage of the country’s south and sharing coverage with Groseto over Rome.

This month, Typhoons will fly against Saab Gripen aircraft for the first time after being deployed to the Italian island of Sardinia for a month for exercises.

Italy’s Eurofighter Typhoons are flying with two Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missiles and two AIM-9L missiles and a central fuel tank, in addition to the 27mm Mauser cannon, said Lt. Col. Daniele Picco, 9th squadron commander.

During an open day for the press last week, pilots stressed the sensor-fusion capabilities of the aircraft as a key advantage over others they had flown, including Italy’s leased F-16s.

Tranche 3 Trouble?

But the growing edginess of Air Force officials about investing in Eurofighter’s third tranche indicates that Italy may yet trim up to 30 aircraft off its previously planned order of 121.

In the run-up to a contract signature for Tranche 3, expected in early 2009 by the Eurofighter consortium, Italian officials are likely to remind industry that Typhoon spending has been decreed by the Italian parliament. If money spent on Tranches 1 and 2 has eaten into funds for the final order, they will argue, Italy’s Tranche 3 order of 46 aircraft could be jeopardized, despite potential penalty payments.

A reluctance to spend too much on the pending air-to-ground capabilities of the aircraft also stems from Italy’s order of the Joint Strike Fighter, although one senior defense official sees a possible way out.

“The Eurofighter has been supported by European governments hitherto, partly in order to boost Europe’s industrial capability,” he said. “That, in turn, should boost the chances of European industrial consortium to sell the aircraft overseas, which, in turn, should allow the consortium to bring down costs for its domestic customers.”

That view was echoed by Eurofighter spokesman Wolfdietrich Hoeveler.

“European air forces are today taking ownership of the Eurofighter, and we have to look to bring down costs and increase availabilities,” he said.

The challenge faced by the consortium will be to depress costs even as it seeks to build up the air-to-ground capabilities that will further boost export chances, such as the e-scan Caesar radar prototype, which completed a flight test on Typhoons in Germany this month.

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Tres bon!

Eurofighter signs new Cooperation Agreement with Norway

15/05/2007

Oslo/Hallbergmoos - The Eurofighter partnership consolidates the close ties to Norway by signature of a further agreement on technological cooperation between the Eurofighter consortium of Alenia Aeronautica (Italy), BAE Systems (United Kingdom), EADS CASA (Spain), EADS Germany and Norway. Eurofighter CEO Aloysius Rauen signed the Letter of Agreement with the Norwegian Ministry of Defence (NMOD) in the presence of the German Ambassador to Norway Roland Mauch, who represented the four Eurofighter Nations, and the Norwegian Defence Minister, Anne-Grete Strøm-Erichsen.

This Letter of Agreement with the NMOD sets out the principles to be applied to industrial contracts and includes the funding commitment from the NMOD to cover the development contracts between Norwegian and Eurofighter Partner Companies.

Aloysius Rauen commented at the signing ceremony, "This new Agreement is a further important element in meeting the demands of Norway's competition for a new combat aircraft. It will allow the Eurofighter Partnership to continue to develop and demonstrate its ability to deliver high technology in partnership with Norwegian industry. This new agreement will also provide vital continuity to Norwegian industry in preparation for the potential NOK 40 Billion which would accrue as part of the industrial package associated with a Norwegian choice of Eurofighter as it's F-16 replacement. This industrial work would form a substantial part of the Eurofighter package for Norway, combining Eurofighter Typhoon's unmatched operational capability with a comprehensive training and through life support package to provide an unbeatable solution to meet Norway's long-term strategic military and industrial requirements.”

The Agreement, worth potentially €75M over the next 4 years, marks the continuation of the successful partnership with Norwegian industry which started in 2003 with a previous Industrial Participation Agreement which in itself was worth €35.7M. This previous agreement covered ten Eurofighter development projects with six Norwegian companies including work on target imagining, advanced radar technology, noise suppression, 3D Archiving and other advanced high technology projects.

The new Agreement signed today will provide Norwegian industry with full access to high technology programmes within the Eurofighter Partner Companies, which will ensure that Norwegian industry will be in the best position to maximise the work associated with the forthcoming procurement decision. The industrial agreement, together with the existing Letter of Understanding (LoU) between the Governments of Norway and the 4 Eurofighter Nations, demonstrates the strength of commitment from the Eurofighter Partner Nations to meet Norway's F-16 replacement requirement.

High Resolution images of the Eurofighter Typhoon can be downloaded from our web site. Hard Copy images are available on request.

www.eurofighter.com/medialibrary

http://www.eurofighter.com/news/20070515.asp
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Details of Typhoon enhancements revealed

By Luca Peruzzi

Further details have emerged of the operational enhancements agreed for the Eurofighter Typhoon strike aircraft in a multinational Change Programme 210 (CP210) deal signed on the behalf of partner nations Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK on 29 March.

The Phase 1 enhancement package for Tranche 2 production is centred on a computer risk-reduction improvement programme, which will introduce a new computer hardware and software architecture, says Eurofighter chief operating officer Brian Phillipson. "To overcome obsolescence problems and to extend the computer capabilities on Tranche 2 aircraft, a new hardware architecture based on Power PC processors has been introduced," he adds.

Computers on Block 8 production aircraft will initially use re-hosted software from Tranche 1, but Phillipson says from 2011 a rewritten package will be introduced, "allowing full exploitation of further developments in avionics, sensors and weapon systems". The final software release under CP210 will be available by late 2012, he says.

"The new architecture will enhance Typhoon's human-machine interface, while further enhancements to its Multifunctional Information Distribution System, GPS, defensive aids system and secure radios will add a substantial contribution to Eurofighter's multi-role/swing-role capabilities," Phillipson said during a briefing in Rome. "The new software package will also allow the pilot to re-program bomb fuzes during flight, further expanding the aircraft's mission flexibility."

EADS has conducted the first flight of a Eurofighter carrying an active electronically scanned array front end for its Euroradar consortium Captor radar a potential key element of further enhancements during its later Tranche 2 and Tranche 3 production phases.

Link: Flight Global CP210 details revealed

CP210 va donner le Eurofighter Typhoon (quoi je sais):

1. Integration de Paveway IV, EGBU-16, Iris-T (digital), LDPs pour tous partnaires

2. Nouveaux ordinateurs

3. Nouveaux software pour un meilleur MMI, MIDS, GPS, DASS, radios

4. "Reprogramming" de "fuzes" de "LGBs" en vol

En Tranche 1 Block 5 on (RAF) va avoir aussi l'integration de Enhanced Paveway II, GBU-10, GBU-16 et un LDP (Litening III).

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La Norvège qui participe déjà financièrement au programme F-35 a apparemment suffisemment de ressources pour s'engager dans celui de l'Eurofighter... (merci le pétrole). En tout cas, produire des éléments de l'Eurofighter est un engagement concret qui rapporte plus que de donner de l'argent aux américains pour rien du tout au final (dans l'hypothèse où c'est le Typhoon qu'ils choisissent). Cependant, je pensais que si le F-35 était abandonné, c'était l'option Gripen qui avait le plus de chances?

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Précisons que la Norvège est activement engagée également dans le développement d'une nouvelle version du Gripen avec SAAB!! Autrement dit, les Norvégiens sont industrielements impliqués dans les 3 concurrents aux remplacement des F-16, et personnellement j'espère vraiment qu'ils choisieront une solutrion Européenne (Gripen-N ou Typhoon, peut importe)

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Bah le Typhoon aussi en théorie. Mais même si la Norvège a déclaré avoir choisi pour l'instant le F-35, elle se réservait la liberté de changer de finaliste si les conditions prévues initiallement changeaient trop drastiquement. Autrement dit, si le prix du F-35 augmente encore de trop et/ou si Lockheed ne fait pas de sérieux gestes commerciaux pour réduire la facture Norvégienne, alors Oslo agitera les jolis contrats de développement et de paticipation signés avec la Suéde et Eurofighter devant les commerciaux US.

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Je crois que le Eurofighter Typhoon a bonnes chances. Pourquoi? Parce que le Eurofighter Typhoon est un avion meilleur que le Gripen (pour le F35 le comparison est moins claire), a plus de "sovereignty" que le F35 pour un petit pays, a iirc un plus grand programme d'offset que le F35 et le Gripen.

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Bof... Le Gripen amélioré a autant d'intérêt opérationnel et politique que le Typhoon en réalité. Le Typhoon n'est pas "meilleurs" que le Gripen si on remet les choses dans leur contexte (le Gripen est un petit moniréacteur, le Typhoon un gros biréacteur), et la version améliorée serait largement supérieur à la version actuelle en terme de radar (qui sera sans doute au niveau du CEASAR et du RBE2-AA, voire supérieur), de portée, de capacité d'emport et de polyvalence. Mais bon, là n'est pas la question! L'intérêt du Gripen serait, malgrè une participation plus faible de l'industrie, des avantages plus intéressant par rapport aux ventes exports, sans compter l'intérêt de disposer d'un appareil commun en Scandinavie (SAAB espère qu'une vente à la Norvège débloquerait la vente de la version améliorée au Danemark et, à plus long terme, en Finlande, pour le remplacement des Hornet) Mais bon, il ne s'agit que du point de vue de SAAB, et on est bien d'accord que pour Eurofighter, SAAB et Lockheed, leur avion est toujours le meilleurs!! Mon point de vu personnel est que la question sera de toute façon décidée politiquement (et je n'est pas de source en Norvège pour savoir de quoi il retourne là-bas), mais même si ce n'était pas le cas, les trois appareils sont différents et le choix final pourrait dépendre aussi des vues à long terme de la Norvège (le Typhoon étant un choix idéal pour la défense du pays et le rapprochement avec l'Europe industrielle, le F-35 étant préférable si la Norvège décide de s'investir dans des alliances avec les USA, tandis que le Gripen reste une solution plus "régionale").

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Sinon c'est que les Norvégiens sont réalistes. Ils ont le choix entre un bombardier léger (le F35) et 2 intercepteurs (le typhoon et le gripen) donc ils vont peut-être acheter 2 types d'avions. Et évidement c'est un moyen faire jouer la concurrence, de bénéficier d'une double source d'armement, de ne pas être critiquer pour un choix non européen... Quoique, il y a moins de 60 F16 a remplacer donc je ne suis pas sur qu'un choix de 2 avions différents soit une excellente solution. Mais la Norvège aura la possibilité de partager les équipes de maintenance et les pièces détachées avec d'autres pays donc ça limite les contraintes opérationnelles du a 2 types d'avions différents.

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Si ils souhaitent remplacer le F 16, le Gripen semble l'appareil le plus adapter car plus proche (Monoréacteur, multirole). Le F 35 est sympa mais je crois pas que la furtivité soit un grand interet pour la Norvege, par contre un super Gripen avec capacité anti navire (la Norvege c'est un bon millier de littoral) fera parfaitement l'affaire.

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Tient ils nous en on pas fait une de leur photo spectaculaire avec tout un tas d'armement! La photo n'a pas eu le temps de passer sous photoshop peut étre?! ^^ Le principale c'est qu'il aient enfin pu le faire voler

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Premier déploiment international de l'Eurofighter.

The RAF Typhoon programme has reached another milestone with the largest overseas deployment of UK Typhoons and the first full overseas deployment for its first frontline operational squadron.

There are now just five weeks to go before RAF Typhoons take up the Quick Reaction Alert role, where they become responsible for protecting southern UK airspace from possible terrorist attack.

In order to make sure they are fully prepared seven aircraft and 120 personnel from 3(F) Squadron, normally based at RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire, deployed to the Moron Air Force Base in southern Spain to participate in Exercise Lone Eider, a week long exercise aimed at conducting air defence tactics and collective training with personnel from the Spanish Air Force.

"This is the first time any of the Typhoon nations have actually integrated together and worked at this level to really develop the plans and tactics for how we use Typhoon day to day," explained Detachment Commander Sqn Ldr Jez Attridge.

"The fascinating thing about this particular deployment is that we are doing this at three different levels. Firstly the operational level with the Spanish pilots, secondly the supply level to make sure that we get the right equipment here and we can utilise the Spanish supply system, but also at the engineering level so we have the chance in three key areas to find out how to do business and better learn from each other."

Throughout the duration of the exercise, aircrew experienced both one-on-one dogfights with Spanish typhoons as well as more complicated missions with Spanish F18's playing the opposing 'red force'.

The Squadron also flew alongside the Spanish Air Force in support of Exercise Tapon 07, an air and maritime exercise designed to train staff and maritime units in the conduct of crisis response operations. The focus was on co-operation with naval forces in the Gibraltar Strait, Gulf of Cadiz and Alboran Sea.

Being such a high profile first for the Typhoon programme, there was intense pressure to see if the detailed plans to deploy and logistically support the detachment succeeded:

"It's gone very well," added Sqn Ldr Attridge, "if you think that the aeroplane has only really been on 3 Squadron for a year and in that year we have gone from having an aeroplane and just starting rudimentary flying with it, to now 12 months later deploying seven Typhoons all the way down in southern Spain, is just a tremendous leap."

The exercise was preceded by a visit by the Chief of the Air Staff Air Chief Marshal Sir Glenn Torpy to the Moron base where he was able to meet his Spanish counterpart, General Rancisco Jose Garcia De La Vega and witness at first hand how the two Typhoon partner nations are introducing the aircraft into service and training for future operations.

Summing up the importance of exercises with Typhoon partners such as the Spanish, RAF Coningsby Station Commander Group Captain Stu Atha said:

"We need to understand each other. We share the same language and we share the same vocabulary as pilots so it's actually very easy as military to military to sit here to train together. When it comes to going on operations, it makes it so much easier when the guy you are flying with is the guy you trained with."

Gp Capt Atha's comments were echoed by his counterpart at the Moron base, Colonel Leon Machés:

"We have the same intentions, we have designed the aircraft together, we have discussed it together, now we want to fly in combat together."

http://www.raf.mod.uk/news/index.cfm?storyid=B85A7B18-1143-EC82-2EDD8D23F291C13D

Enfin [50]

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ils n'ont toujours pas étés déployés en opération réelle... là c'est que de l'entrainement. Et même leur premier déployement ne sera pas un vrai déployement en situation de combat, les argentins n'ayant pas encore déclaré la guerre à la GB [08] Moi j'attends toujours un typhoon en Irak, en Afghanistan ou dans un endroit du genre... Le Rafale, ça fait 6 ans qu'il y va... [07]

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ils n'ont toujours pas étés déployés en opération réelle... là c'est que de l'entrainement.

Il n'ont toujours pas été déployés "tout court". Au cas où vous n'auriez pas remarqué, les Espagnols ont aussi des Typhoon. Les anglais sont donc chez eux, avec toute la logistique "Typhoon" nécessaire en cas de besoin. Ca aide...

Ils pourront parler de déploiement lorsqu'ils auront opéré depuis une base neutre.

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Mais peut être que le but de ce déploiment est de fonctionner sans la logistique espagnole, juste avec ce qu'ils emmèneront ? Sinon le Rafale a été déployé en Afghanistan en 2002 lors de la première mission Héraklès.

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Mais peut être que le but de ce déploiment est de fonctionner sans la logistique espagnole, juste avec ce qu'ils emmèneront ?

Tu as lu l'article ou tu as fait semblant ?

"The fascinating thing about this particular deployment is that we are doing this at three different levels. Firstly the operational level with the Spanish pilots, secondly the supply level to make sure that we get the right equipment here and we can utilise the Spanish supply system, but also at the engineering level so we have the chance in three key areas to find out how to do business and better learn from each other."

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Ca fait pourtant longtemps que DEFA nous enseigne la lecture entre les lignes ! Mais on a pas encore le coup de main. [08] Même écrit clairement, on trouve moyen de passer à côté !

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