Thursday, August 2, 2012



Eurofighter Typhoon is 4th generation fighter aircraft to continue/improve legacy of twin engine fighter jets like F-14 Tomcat, F-15A-E Eagle, F/A-18A-D Hornet even the latest F/A-18E/F Super Hornet multirole fighter aircraft.
The European Consortium (EADS Military Aircraft (Germany), BAE System (UK), Alenia Aeronautica (Italy) & EADS Cassadian (formerly CASA) (Spain) responsible for design and developed Eurofighter Typhoon jets. French left the European Consortium during the early stage of design.

In 1998 production agreement between four member countries, 620 Eurofighter fighter jets will be built base on three improved capabilities contract tranches (Tranche I, II & III). In 2009, all countries members decided to continue the production of Eurofighter last tranches, Tranche 3A and renew their effort for export of Eurofighter Typhoon.


Eurofighter program is based on effort of four European countries (UK, Germany, Italy & Spain) to find a new design for new European fighter aircraft.
It began in 1985, when 5 European countries (UK, France, Germany, Italy & Spain) formed a partnership for Future European Fighter Aircraft (FEFA) program. French ended their partnership in 1985due to differences on the aircraft design and their leading role request not fulfil. French continued their design with  new aircraft later known as Rafale.

The other four nations continued new European fighter project known as Eurofighter Typhoon in 1986. Eurofighter developed base on clipped delta wing, canard, twin engine and lower radar signature. On the other side, Rafale development more on weapon load and multirole capability which included naval version.

Eurofighter aircraft design more focus on air superiority role / high level of agility (good aerodynamic, very good thrust-to-weight ration, fast-slew-point capability and integrated of electronics sensor and defensive system which included pilot friendly cockpit design.

On Air to Air combat role, it relies on long range detection using mechanically-scanned phased array ECR-90 Captor radar and PIRATE Infrared Search & Track (IRST) system combined with array of advance Air to Air weapons / missiles. The pilot Voice Throttle & Stick System (VTAS) also install in the cockpit.


  • Tranche 1 - Eurofighter Typhoon Tranche 1 is the first block inception of Eurofighter tranches. It designed for good aerial combat and high agility in air superiority . However it lacked Air to Ground / Anti-ship role.
  • Tranche 2 - Tranche 2 production begin in 2008. For Tranche 2, it maintain good air superiority role with added precision ground attack capability. But it capability still cannot categorise as fully multirole fighter aircraft compare to F/A-18E/F Super Hornet & F-15E Strike Eagle. The system included anti-jam Global Positioning System (GPS) from Raytheon System Ltd.
  • Tranche 3 - It base on Tranche 2 standard plus with upgraded power system & electronically for future growth / upgrade. One of the major upgraded for Tranche 3 is E-Scan AESA (Active Electronically Scanned Array) radar to replace mechanical-scanned array radar (ECR-90 Captor). Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU) also installed on Tranche 3.


Eurofighter uses 2 x Eurojet EJ200 turbofans jet engine(90kN each engine) manufactured by AEROJET Consortium (Avio Italy, ITP Spain, MTU Aero Engine Germany & Rolls Royce UK). The engine features digital control, wide chord aerofoils and single crystal turbine blades, a covergent / divergent exhaust nozzle and integrated health monitoring. It has Supercruise capability where it can fly at speed of over Mach 1 without using afterburning. This performance will able Eurofighter to avoid / reduce heat seeker missile & save fuel consumption.


Typhoon armaments include pre-installed 27mm Maser cannon (remove from UK Typhoon). For Air-Air mode weapon, Raytheon AIM-9 Sidewinder (Advance Short Range Air-Air Missile up to AIM-9M) for short range. IRIS-T (Diehl Germany) and AIM-120 AMRAAM (Advance Medium Range Air-Air Missile) use for medium range. MBDA Meteor long range missile still on progress to integrated with Eurofighter Typhoon.

For precision strike, Raytheon UK Paveway IV dual (laser / GPS) guided bomb (500 lbs) & Raytheon EGBU-16/GBU-49 Enhanced Paveway dual laser/GPS guided (500 lbs) still on test for latest Typhoon. In long range Air-Ground Missile,MBDA Storm Shadow, KEPD Taurus 350 Stand-Off Cruise missile / SCALP EG for land attack.
Germany Typhoon will use PILUM & HOSBO medium range glide bombs with 100-160km range using GPS/INS guidance. MBDA UK Brimstone short range light strike missiles for UK Typhoon.
Raytheon AGM-88 HARM anti-radar missiles use for anti-radiation.


RAFAEL LITENING III Surveillance & Targeting pods use for surveillance and targeting sensor. RAFAEL REECELITE reconnaissance pod use for reconnaissance duty.
Thales Damocles surveillance & targeting pod were request by Saudi Arabian Air Force for their Typhoon.


For targeting & locating system, Typhoon use PIRATE (Passive Infrared Airborne Track Equipment). When use with radar in Air-Air role, it functions as an Infrared Search & Track System (IRST) providing passive target detection & tracking.In Air-Surface role, it can performs multiple target acquisiton & identification and provides navigation and landing. PIRATE also can link to Helmet Mounted Display (HMD).

Defensive Aid Sub-System (DASS) installed within aircraft structure and integrated with avionics system act as countermeasure. It provides an all-round prioritised assessment of threat with fully automatic response to a single or multiple threats.
DASS includes Electronics Countermeasures / Support Measure (ECM/ESM), front & rear missile approach warners, towed decoy systems, laser warning receivers & chaff & flare dispensing system. The avionics system based on NATO Standard databus with fibre optic highways.
For Tranche 3A, it will accommodated with Praetorian DASS defensive system that will incorporate ECM/ESM and Missile Approach Warning System (MAWS).


UK Eurofighter currently successfully integrate and test Meteor Long Range BVR missile with new E-SCAN AESA radar. Praetorian DASS defensive suite still on test. Praetorian DASS integrated Missile Approach Warning System ((MAWS) tied into array of defensive sub-system - chaff & flare, tower decoy, ESM to find hostile radar, ECM to confuse enemy radar detection. BAE Helmet-Mounted Symbology System (HMS) and Head Up Display show flight reference, weapon aiming & cueing & FLIR image.


UK, Germany, Italy and Spain are main user of Typhoon. Since it failed bidding for 126 M-MRCA, EADS through it's partner like BAE System try to market Eurofighter Typhoon to the country like Oman, UAE, South Korea, Malaysia and other countries.
Austria become the first export customer for Typhoon. It lease 15 Eurofighter to Austrian Air Force. Saudi Arabia become the second export customer through Project Salaam in 2007. First 24 Typhoon Tranche 2 came in fly-in condition. Another 48 aircraft Tranche 3 will be install in Saudi.

                                         Typhoon with wide array of weapons/missile & pods