Hailed by experts as the world’s most advanced fighter aircraft, this vehicle has proven a lot through the years. In this article, you’ll get to know about Europe’s most extensive military program, the Eurofighter Typhoon. It’s a collaboration between Germany, Spain, the United Kingdom, and Italy.
1. AIRCRAFT ORIGINS
We can trace the origins of the Eurofighter Typhoon as far back as the 1990s. On March 27, 1994, this deadly vehicle took its maiden flight. However, it wasn’t until 2003 that the four founding nations introduced this Eurofighter jet into operational service. Since then, there have been 564 fighter jets that are operated all over the world.
In the making of this aircraft, the manufacturers kept two things in mind: upgradeability and flexibility. It aims to ensure that the platform could be used highly effectively by all air forces providing unrivaled global partnerships, as stated on the aircraft’s website. Through the years, their dedication to this aircraft’s purpose has given them success not just on the jet’s performance but also on the global market.
2. AIRCRAFT SPECIFICATIONS
As of this year, there’s a total of 9 operators across the globe. That excludes the four founding nations: Austria, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia. For a unit that can cost up to 124 million USD, you can get this flexible, agile, and enduring combat aircraft.
For its specifications, according to eurofighter.com, the Eurofighter Typhoon uses the twin high-performance Eurojet EJ200 engine. This engine allows the aircraft to cruise at a maximum Mach 2.0, with each machine providing 90 kN of thrust. The Captor-M radar, a state-of-the-art radar, is also equipped in this multi-role combat aircraft.
3. PIRATE INFRARED SENSOR
Another pride of this beast is its Pirate Infrared Sensor. It allows the pilot to detect and track single or multiple targets across a wide field of regard against the most heavily congested operational environment, according to leonardocompany.com. The sensor is also a great addition to the aircraft’s Defensive Aid Sub System (DASS), which allows the Eurofighter Typhoon to avoid, evade, counter, and survive evolving threats.
For its cockpit, this Eurofighter has an advanced cockpit design with a head-up display (HUD) and a multi-function head-down display (MHDD). Both of which are responsible for the pilot’s guidance and overall tactical situation during combat. However, what gives the pilots of this aircraft a significant advantage against other combat jet operators is its integration of the HMSS.
The HMSS or the Helmet Mounted Symbology System utilizes the pilot’s helmet by providing flight reference and weapon data through the visor. This system then comes in handy for this aircraft’s offensive capabilities.
Only this Eurofighter has adequate weapon availability and sufficient processing power to support in-flight missile updates and bomb in-flight targeting simultaneously, as stated on airbus.com. However, even with these features and specifications, it seems like we have not yet seen the best version of the Eurofighter Typhoon.
5. AIRCRAFT UPGRADES
Just recently, an article by Michael Gubish for Flight Global stated that “Eurofighter will upgrade the engines and systems on its Typhoon combat aircraft as part of a bid to replace Germany’s fleet of Panavia Tornados.” These upgrades would mean that the Eurofighter Typhoon will deliver every capability and perform every mission much better than its previous version.
6. AIRCRAFT COMPARISON
This time, let’s compare the Eurofighter Typhoon with the U.S. Air Force’s F-22 Raptor. On print, this 4.5 generation Eurofighter Typhoon looks like it would not match against the 5th generation F-22 Raptor. However, with the Typhoon’s advantage of carrying more armament than the Raptor, a dogfight between the two aircraft can result in the Typhoon emerging victorious.
Moreover, this aircraft had also been involved in a few accidents. It has recorded ten accidents in total, with the most recent one that happened in June 2019. Nevertheless, the Eurofighter Typhoon has lived up to its name.
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