Military Space News  





.
MILPLEX
Typhoon's Libya debut seen as sales boost

Typhoon debut in Libyan strikes
London (UPI) Mar 25, 2011 - As British officials this week claimed the defeat of Libyan air defenses, the aircraft prided to have contributed most to that success include the Rafale, Mirage 200, Tornado and F-16. Other aircraft noted to have contributed to successful air runs against the military assets of Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi include the F-15, F-18, B-2 and Harrier jump jets. Military action against Gadhafi's 42-year-old hold on power mounted Saturday when a coalition led by the United States, Britain and France launched airstrikes against military targets in Libya.

Envoys from the 28 NATO nations agreed this week that the alliance take control of the operation, enforcing a no-fly zone and arms embargo. That mission involves use of alliance warplanes and battleships to prevent weapons from reaching Gadhafi's followers. This week the commander of British aircraft operating over Libya, Air Vice Marshal Greg Bagwell, said that coalition forces could operate "with near impunity," claiming that the Libyan air force had been crushed. Of the veteran aircraft used in Operation Odyssey Dawn, one was never seen in combat missions before: the Eurofighter Typhoon.

The aircraft was designed in the 1980s and 1990s, often criticized by experts and other military observers for merely being a relic of the Cold War era and already outdated by the time it entered service. The war plane isn't a stealthy, fifth-generation fighter. Still, the defpro Web site reported the British air force's "Typhoon fighter aircraft have proven during the first five days of Operation Odyssey Dawn -- or Operation Ellamy, as British forces call their involvement in Libya-- that they are a legitimate asset for conventional military tasks, such as those now required over Libya."

Typhoon pilot Wing Commander Jez Attridge told the BBC in a recent interview that the war jets hadn't been fired at during the course of the operations but "it has certainly not been the usual routine when Typhoon pilots entered Libyan air space for the first time." Operation Ellamy also saw another first: The British air force confirmed this week that the first female Typhoon pilot took part in combat operations over Libya. The name of the female pilot wasn't disclosed but it was reported that she has been part of a sortie that took off from the Gioia Del Colle air base in Italy.
by Staff Writers
Cairo (UPI) Mar 25, 2011
The Eurofighter Typhoon has flown its first combat missions over Libya as part of Operation Odyssey Dawn, giving a boost to its European makers' drive to sell the $120 million, delta-winged fighter in big-ticket strike jet deals in Japan and India.

"It never hurts to have the 'as used in combat' stamp," said Francis Tusa, editor of the Defense Analysis newsletter.

The Typhoons from the British air force flew their first missions Monday, the third day of Operation Odyssey Dawn, as part of the 906 Expeditionary Air Wing based at Gioia Del Colle in Italy.

The Eurofighter consortium consists of Britain's BAE Systems, Europe's largest defense company, Finmeccanica of Italy and the European Aeronautic, Defense and Space Co.

The Typhoon may be in action but it remains questionable just how much its involvement in Odyssey Dawn will bolster its sales prospects.

So far the twin-engine, supersonic jets have flown five-hour patrols in the U.N.-mandated no-fly zone over Libya, though only in the air-superiority role for which it was designed.

But aerial dogfights with Moammar Gadhafi's outnumbered air force are unlikely since allied commanders say the Libyan air force has been pretty much crippled already.

So the Typhoon won't be able to show off its paces by downing Libya's Russian-built MiGs and Sukhois or French-built Mirages.

It's the ground-attack jets like British Tornados, U.S. F-16s and F/A18s, covered by the Typhoons, that are racking up the missions by hitting Gadhafi's air-defense missile sites, radars and ground forces.

The Typhoon won't have ground-attack capability until 2018.

The fighter was designed in the 1970s to combat Soviet fighters but since the collapse of communism in the late 1980s there hasn't been much call for air superiority fighters.

Indeed, it's been criticized as little more than a relic of the Cold War and pretty much outdated as soon as it went into service with the British air force.

The Typhoon is also in service with Germany's Luftwaffe and the air forces of Spain, Italy, Austria and Saudi Arabia.

But Tusa says that in theory the Typhoon could be armed with precision-guided munitions designed to take out hardened ground targets like bunkers and command centers.

"In terms of boosting exports, you want Typhoon doing this," he said. "Having spent the money there's no reason it can't."

Riyadh, which has traditionally bought British as well as U.S. aircraft, confirmed in September 2007 that it had signed a $7.17 billion contract for 72 Typhoons, 48 of which would be built in the kingdom.

The first 24 of the European-built jets were diverted from the British air force after it decided to trim its order for Eurofighters because of defense budget cutbacks.

The Saudis have been reported to be considering an additional 24 Eurofighters. But their plans to buy 84 Boeing F-15S fighters as part of a massive $60 billion arms deal with Washington could mean the Typhoon scheme will be dropped.

Meantime, the Eurofighter is one of several advanced jets in a contest to supply the Indian air force with 126 multirole combat aircraft in a contract worth in excess of $10.5 billion.

The other contenders are the Boeing F/A-18N, the Rafale built by Dassault Aviation of France, Lockheed Martin's F-16IN Fighting Falcon, Saab of Sweden's Jas 39 Gripen NG/IN and Mikoyan's MiG-35 from Russia.

The Typhoon is also involved in a contest for 40-50 new fighter aircraft for Japan.

Due to Tokyo's traditional defense ties to the United States, Lockheed Martin's F-35 Lightning II stealth fighter and Boeing's F/A-18E/F Super Hornet are considered top contenders.

The F-35 program has been hit by delays and cost overruns that could make it less attractive.

The consortium that builds the Eurofighter has also been aided by the U.S. decision not to sell Japan the jet it really wanted -- the now-abandoned F-22 Raptor -- to maintain the secrecy of its advanced technologies.

"Eurofighter has offered Tokyo lots of sweeteners, including industrial participation," said Michael Auslin of the American Enterprise Institute in Washington.

"If the U.S. can't come up with something equally attractive, it will be difficult for Tokyo to choose a less-beneficial deal."

The Persian Gulf emirate of Qatar has been evaluating the Eurofighter for an order for 24-36 fighters. Contenders include the F-35, F/A-18, F-15 Eagle and Dassault's Rafale.




Share This Article With Planet Earth
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit
YahooMyWebYahooMyWeb GoogleGoogle FacebookFacebook



Related Links
The Military Industrial Complex at SpaceWar.com
Learn about the Superpowers of the 21st Century at SpaceWar.com



Tempur-Pedic Mattress Comparison

Newsletters :: SpaceDaily Express :: SpaceWar Express :: TerraDaily Express :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News
MILPLEX
Elbit And IAI Establish Joint Company
Haifa, Israel (SPX) Mar 21, 2011
Elbit Systems has announced the signing of a founder's agreement (the "Agreement") with Israel Aerospace Industries ("IAI") to establish a joint company and a limited partnership (collectively the "Joint Entity") to perform a potential project of purchasing and maintenance of advanced training aircraft, as well as additional services (the "Project"), for the Israeli Ministry of Defense (the "MoD ... read more

.
Get Our Free Newsletters Via Email
  


MILPLEX
LockMart Awarded THAAD Production Contract

LockMart Huntsville Integrated Test Center To Support For Missile Defense

Israel deploys 'Iron Dome' anti-rocket system

US Welcomes Mutually Reinforcing Missile Defense Cooperation With Russia

MILPLEX
Rocket slams into Israel city as Gaza violence spirals

Taiwan missile test flops again

Russia to double missile production from 2013: Putin

China aims new missile at Taiwan: intelligence chief

MILPLEX
Northrop Grumman Submits Final Proposal For NATO Alliance Ground Surveillance

Northrop Grumman Ships First Broad Area Maritime Surveillance Fuselage

Dassault, BAE press ahead with drone plan

Mexico defends decision to use US drones in drug war

MILPLEX
Raytheon BBN Technologies To Protect Internet Comms For Military Abroad

Gilat Announces New Military Modem For Robust Tactical Satcom-On-The-Move

Advanced Emulation Accelerates Deployment Of Military Network Technologies

Tactical Communications Group Completes Deployment Of Ground Support Systems

MILPLEX
LockMart Rolls Out First Special Operations MC-130J Combat Shadow II

S. American security firms heavily armed

LockMart Delivers 8,000th Combat Computing Unit To US Navy

PEO Ammo Picks Up 155mm Lightweight Howitzer Program

MILPLEX
U.S., Italy battle for Turkish helo deal

EU's defence project sidelined in Libya crisis

Emirates invests heavily in arms industry

Typhoon's Libya debut seen as sales boost

MILPLEX
China's Hu warns Sarkozy on Libya strikes

Outside View: Illusions, delusions of war

Putin's animal antics questioned in Russia

Crucial EU summit split on Libya, upset by Portugal

MILPLEX
Scientists Build World's First Anti-Laser

Yale scientists build 'anti-laser'

'Air laser' could find bombs at a distance

ONR Achieves Milestone In Free Electron Laser Program


The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2010 - SpaceDaily. AFP and UPI Wire Stories are copyright Agence France-Presse and United Press International. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by SpaceDaily on any Web page published or hosted by SpaceDaily. Privacy Statement