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British Eurofighter Typhoon In First RAF Bomb Drop


Ministry Of Defence (UK)

RAF Typhoon - first bomb drop

The RAF's newest and most versatile multi-role fighter, Eurofighter Typhoon has dropped its first in-service RAF bomb - and the weapon scored a direct hit on the target at sea off the Welsh coast.

Crown copyright: Typhoon bomb drop

The weapon, a 1000lb Paveway 2 laser guided bomb (LGB) was dropped by a Typhoon of No. 11 Squadron based at RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire.

Baroness Taylor, Minister for Defence Equipment and Support said: "Typhoon is an exceptional fighter jet; we have already seen it perform in its air-to-air role in June this year when it defended UK airspace.

The first RAF bomb drop is a significant step towards the Typhoon being ready for operational use."

The Pilot of the BAE Systems aircraft said: "The drop ran very smoothly and is testament to the exceptional performance of the aircraft even at this early stage of multi-role development."

Typhoon Project Team Leader, Air Commodore Chris Bushell, commented: "This successful weapons trial is an important step on the route towards achieving multi-role capability for Typhoon. The result of this trial has emphasised the effectiveness that this will add to the Typhoon fleet and that delivery of the future operational multi-role aircraft is on track".

Trials are continuing to perfect its bomb-dropping techniques with a view to achieving an initial air-to-ground attack capability by the summer of 2008. This follows on from the aircraft being declared operational in the air-to-air role, defending UK air space from aerial threats, on 29 June this year.

The pilot of the BAE Systems aircraft was from the RAF's 17(Reserve) Squadron, the Operational Evaluation Unit, which is also based at RAF Coningsby.

Notes:

1. The drop took place on Thursday 15 November.

2. The RAF Typhoon carried out the trial alongside a BAE Systems twin-seat Typhoon which was carrying a Rafael Litening lll laser pod which illuminated the target. The laser guided the Paveway 2, dropped by the RAF Typhoon, straight to the target.

3. The target for the exercise was 20 miles out in Cardigan Bay at the QinetiQ weapons range at Aberporth, Cardigan.

4. This is the first bomb drop for an in-service RAF Typhoon, following an initial BAE Systems drop which took place on 17th October also at the QinetiQ weapons range in Aberporth, West Wales by the Typhoon Operational Evaluation Unit, 17 Squadron, based at RAF Coningsby.

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ENDS

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