Royal Air Force Typhoon jets and a Voyager tanker have flown to Portugal to demonstrate their ability to project airpower over the Atlantic and Western Mediterranean.

According to the Royal Air Force here, flying from RAF Lossiemouth in Elgin, Scotland, the Typhoon FGR4 operated by IX (B) Squadron, transited north to Monte Real Air Base in Portugal – home to the 201 and 301 Fighter Squadrons who both operate F-16 Falcons, as they continued their air integration training.

“Two Royal Air Force Typhoons have flown to Portugal to conduct fighter integration training with their Portuguese counterparts. The training also demonstrates the UK’s commitment to the defence of NATO, and ability to project airpower over the Atlantic and Western Mediterranean.

Operating away from the home base offers a range of training opportunities for the aircrew as flying alongside other nations provides invaluable insight to each other’s tactics and procedures. Each of the pilots got to fly alongside their Portuguese Air Force counterparts in a variety of fighter manoeuvres.

The Typhoons made the journey to and from Portugal with the support of a Voyager aircraft from RAF Brize Norton, which provided air to air refuelling, you can read more here.

George has a degree in Cyber Security from Glasgow Caledonian University and has a keen interest in naval and cyber security matters and has appeared on national radio and television to discuss current events. He also works for the NHS. George is on Twitter at @geoallison
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expat
expat
3 days ago

Bit off topic, I’m wondering if we should copying the Chinese they have turned their old J-6 jets into drones. I believe the idea is the enemy just wastes missiles taking out non combat airframes, you basically arm a couple to make the entire fleet a threat that needs to be dealt with.

Steve M
Steve M
3 days ago
Reply to  expat

Also slightly of i see US going down E-7 route, It’s the Wedgetail: Air Force to buy E-7 to replace AWACS (defensenews.com) wonder if that will bring unit cost down allowing us to buy some additional frames, NATO will prob follow again more built cheaper they should get

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
2 days ago
Reply to  Steve M

I saw the USA wedgetail articles. Looks like they are giving 5 years to get prototype ready. Probably will cost 3x as much as other variants going by us airforce history. They want to retire 15 of the E-3 and use the money saved to purchase the wedgetail. I would think they should just get wedgetails in current standard and then go down the upgrade route if it’s really needed. Australia has just spent 500m odd developing upgrades for the aircraft. The E-3s are costly and really are past there best. Looks like the U.K. made the correct decision to… Read more »

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
2 days ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

“The Raf do seem to use the aircraft harder than the other forces so they will wear out faster.”

Thing is thought that I doubt the E7 will be relevant by the time it retires such is the pace of tech.

Martin
Martin
2 days ago

True however they mainworry for them was S400 and it seems that it’s not as effective as made out.

dan
dan
1 day ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

I’m sure the USAF will want some of their own high tech toys to be part of the Wedgetails. It’s only taxpayer money anyways. lol

Klonkie
Klonkie
2 days ago
Reply to  Steve M

It’s about time Steve Those E3s have been around since 1977. A great service history though, close to 50 years!

Watcherzero
Watcherzero
3 days ago
Reply to  expat

US has done the same, turning old airframes into remotely piloted target drones.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
3 days ago
Reply to  expat

Very expensive to keep Typhoon T1 flying as drones?

The way you put it they are just missile magnets? I am not sure how affective that would be. You would know if there was a pilot in there from the attitude of the plane and some system responses.

I am assuming the drone planes would also be armed with concrete weapons so they had the right looking load out?

A low tech solution.

I think we are better off focusing on high tech buddy drones.

Steve M
Steve M
3 days ago

Use the Hawk T1’s 🙂

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky
2 days ago
Reply to  Steve M

Can’t you just use a drone to electronically mimic the digital image of a fighter.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
2 days ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

Exactly so.

I don’t think the very different RCS of the Hawk would fool anyone and by the time you have fitted gear to the Hawk to mimic Typhoon you might as well build a cheaper drone to mimic whatever you like?

Rob Young
Rob Young
2 days ago

On the other hand, if said Hawks are equipped with a couple of missiles and sent on a pre-programmed mission, any defences would still have to take them out…

AV
AV
2 days ago
Reply to  Steve M

My thoughts exactly 👍

Expat
Expat
2 days ago

As pointed out Hawks are a better candidate. China obviously believes its effective. Ukraine appears to have preoccupied the air defences of the Moskva with a drone. Even hobby drones can now fly via way points at different predetermined altitudes. So a basic flight control could mimic a pilot.

Last edited 2 days ago by Expat
Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
2 days ago
Reply to  Expat

The fact that the 1970’s designed garbage radar on Moskva was occupied by a drone doesn’t surprise me too much.

The waypoint thing isn’t really the central issue here.

The question is ‘can it fool a decent electronically scanned radar?’ If the answer to that is ‘no’ then it is a waste of resources.

Expat
Expat
2 days ago

Pretty sure if Ukraine flew a Cessna over Dombas right now the Russians would down it with surface to air missiles. The Russians targeted a Malaysian Airlines plane thinking it was a Ukrainian military. The enemy only has to think whatever is heading towards them is a credible threat or carrying out surveillance to take it out. Even send J6s on a one way trip to kamikaze into an airbase or hit logistics you create a threat. Even if you QRA to I’d the target or take out with guns your pull in assets and clocking up airframe hours.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
2 days ago
Reply to  Expat

But that is the difference between having cruddy radar and fully digital systems that can tell the difference crewed by people who know what they are doing.

I agree the Russians would engage anything with everything and therefore waste a lot of firepower. But they have awful kit with awful training.

I’d be surprised if the Chinese were that bad given better education and technical training structures. And that is who we need to be thinking about.

Expat
Expat
2 days ago

What the Ukrainians have shown is thinking outside the box and doing the unexpected is paying off. Shows we should never discount anything that may confuse or distract the enemy.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
2 days ago
Reply to  Expat

I agree to a point.

But it has got to work.

The Ukrainians have an amazingly unsophisticated adversary in the Russians. Who have made fools of themselves.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 day ago

They’re certainly throwing money at it!

China increases 2022 defence budget by 7.1%
https://www.janes.com/defence-news/news-detail/china-increases-2022-defence-budget-by-71

Martin
Martin
2 days ago

We would use MALD for this, they we can fly hundreds much cheaper than T1 typhoon which can still go to a good hike with Ukraine.

Steve R
Steve R
2 days ago
Reply to  Martin

As long as we can replace the T1s with T3s and not simply sell/donate without replacement.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 day ago
Reply to  Steve R
Andy P
Andy P
2 days ago
Reply to  expat

As we’ve seen in The Ukraine, if you have enough missiles then anything is possible…..

I’m just hoping that we have plenty. 🙏

Something Different
Something Different
3 days ago

Scotland is a big country, isn’t it better to describe Lossiemouth as being in Moray like Coningsby is said to be situated in Lincolnshire?

Daniel
Daniel
3 days ago

It literally says it’s in Elgin.

Something Different
Something Different
2 days ago
Reply to  Daniel

Elgin is a small town not a county or local authority area. Would you when describing where RAF Coningsby was located say it was in England or Lincolnshire?

Daniel
Daniel
2 days ago

A small town that happens to be located very close to RAF Lossiemouth, I don’t really understand why you take such offence to that as it’s far more precise than giving a “county or local authority area”. I would say either of those descriptions for the location of RAF Coningsby are acceptable as they are both accurate, but then again I don’t have a massive chip on my shoulder.

Something Different
Something Different
2 days ago
Reply to  Daniel

It’s not about a chip, it’s about accuracy and the fact you would rarely see a location in England described as being in England but rather its county or where it was in relation to a larger urban area. Honestly, look out for it, and repost the next time you will see RAF Coningsby being described as being in England.

David Steeper
David Steeper
2 days ago
Reply to  Daniel

I think he’s got a poster of ‘Nicola’ on his bedroom wall.

Something Different
Something Different
2 days ago
Reply to  David Steeper

I do not. What makes you think I would?

Marked
Marked
2 days ago

Both would be a fair and accurate description so I couldn’t care less to be honest! Far more important things to work up a blood pressure over!

Terence Patrick Hewett
Terence Patrick Hewett
3 days ago

Passengers are now entering SNP airspace: please turn your watches back 800 years.

Something Different
Something Different
2 days ago

What has the SNP got to do with this? What do you mean turn the clock back 800 years, what exactly are you implying? I’m just reminding people that Scotland is a massive land area and as such that saying that somewhere is located in it is not that useful albeit the author is 1) Scottish and 2) did explain the base was near Elgin. Have you got an axe to grind?

Barry Larking
Barry Larking
2 days ago

Jury Prize.

Ian
Ian
2 days ago

Hi SD
RAF Lossiemouth
UK Constituency of Moray
IV31 6SE
Do the SNP recognise the Royal Mail??

Something Different
Something Different
2 days ago
Reply to  Ian

I have nothing to do with the SNP whatsoever so cannot answer on their behalf. I really can’t think why you would imply otherwise, very strange. Im not sure why it’s such a big deal what Im asking for, just want to see the same standards are applied to everyone unless you disagree with fairness?

Last edited 2 days ago by Something Different
Jay R
Jay R
2 days ago

RAF Lossiemouth, Scotland. RAF Coningsby, Lincolnshire. That’s it. The way it is. That’s how we in England, who make the rules for the UK, decided how it is. If it makes you upset, vote Jimmy Cranky.

Something Different
Something Different
2 days ago
Reply to  Jay R

You are incorrect, you personally do not make the rules as you do not speak for England or how a location should be referred to it north or south of the border. Why does it offend you so much to keep to the same naming convention for locations wherever they maybe in the UK? Do you not believe in consistency or accuracy?

Ecopad
Ecopad
2 days ago

Well said mate. I value the intra state links in the UK. Nothing wrong with using county geography. Some people know little of our valuable assets north of Watford!

Ecopad
Ecopad
2 days ago
Reply to  Jay R

It’s all about local knowledge and map density. Have flown out of Lossie and Conny. My squadron referred to both Moray and Scotland. And visiting yanks have termed Conny as Boston! Trivial argument! All I can say is that Moray, Scotland is a valuable asset and long may that continue. I’m from NI and we had RAF St Angelo, Fermanagh and RNAS, Derry both county based names. And why presume about SD, about SNP allegiance? I can’t see it. Bigger issues in this world!

Martin
Martin
2 days ago

Yes and no, Scotland does not use counties anymore but I agree it’s a bit lazy just to refer to Scotland like it’s a single place or entity.

Andy P
Andy P
2 days ago

Don’t know if its been edited mate but it does say Elgin, Scotland.

As a fellow ‘Sweaty’ I’ve seen plenty stuff over the years that I’ve winced at but I’m not seeing it here. I can mind all the the way back to Jim Watt (boxer… the sport, not the pongo thing) being defined as British/Scottish when it suited but I think most media sources are a lot more savvy about ‘nomenclature’ these days.

Something Different
Something Different
2 days ago
Reply to  Andy P

The author is Scottish and using Elgin instead of Moray is not the most egregious example of this practice. You rarely see locations south of the border referred to being just in England. The reason is because it’s assumed that the audience will know where it is if the country or nearest urban area is mentioned. However, when it comes to the other parts of the UK, it is presumed whether a place is, for example, in Wick or Melrose it’s all in roughly in same the location (Scotland) even if that offers the same precision as saying a somewhere… Read more »

Last edited 2 days ago by Something Different
Nestor Makhno
Nestor Makhno
2 days ago

You’re a glutton for punishment, i’ll give you that.

Read the comments below any article on here about scotland, regardless of the subject there will be nasty comments about scottish people.

Its pretty toxic here.

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
1 day ago

It maybe just a long standing editorial preset that as the majority of the population are in England so when it’s outside of England it states the country of the U.K. If it is longstanding then it would be going back to times before the internet so saying Elgin or moray or some other area that isn’t often heard of could leave people thinking where is that? Without being able to quickly find the answer. England is the centre of the U.K. while the rest are parts of the U.K. Outside of the U.K. people often refer to the U.K.… Read more »

Something Different
Something Different
1 day ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

That sounds like a very reasonable explanation. That does leave the question why do people in England not know about the geography of the other parts of the UK. The fact it’s not really covered in schools may be one reason but nor really are the counties south off the border. Another reason may be cultural, and in large part that is driven by the media which often automatically assumes its audience knows the location of sometimes relatively obscure locations in (especially southern) England which may force consumers to do their research from a young age if that is not… Read more »

Puffing Billy
Puffing Billy
3 days ago

2 Typhoons and a Tanker. As a show of force hardly equivalent to a thousand bomber raid!

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
3 days ago
Reply to  Puffing Billy

Useful training for the Voyager and the Typhoon crews.

How many Russian aircraft does it take to contest a Typhoon?

I would guess that the answer was about 8 – but that would be 8 that work properly with all the bits installed.

Steve M
Steve M
3 days ago

trailing 2 Typhoons to Porgutal is not much diferent than what the Voyagers are doing nearly daily? Everyday one goes to AAR orbit in North Sea does 1 circut then heads to Eastern Europe/Baltics. Today RRR9915 is just on its way back from South East Poland, if the AAR loop is not to pick up the chicks to trail why are they wasting an hour flying up there before heading to orbit?

Last edited 3 days ago by Steve M
Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
2 days ago

I wonder how comfy a typhoon seat it? 3 hours to Spain in a plane and I need a siesta

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
2 days ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

It is designed for long refuelled flights?

Ian
Ian
2 days ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

Hi MS….. 3 hours in a plane to Spain…I need to stand up and stretch my legs and remortgage for a couple of beers on Ryanair
Cheers Ian….

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
1 day ago
Reply to  Ian

Exactly. So what is it like sitting in a typhoon cockpit for 8+ hours. No standing up and going down the isle to the toilet. I guess it’s a big nappy under the flightsuit.
No trolley service either. In fact sounds pretty unpleasant.

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
2 days ago
Reply to  Puffing Billy

It’s still a show. With typhoons in Romania, Cyprus, QRA in U.K. there aren’t really lots left over. It’s still more than most airforces can manage. When’s the last time you heard Portugal or Spainish or any nations jets going to Scotland with aar on a jolly.
Granted in a war situation many more could be made airborne if needed

David Barry
David Barry
2 days ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

Er… both Pt and Es reguarly deploy to the Baltics… and it’s no jolly.

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
1 day ago
Reply to  David Barry

Yes they deploy to bases but do they often go out on long flights from home base using multiple air to air refuelling to then return to home base was what I was getting at.
I don’t attempt to undermine what other airforces do. It was a reply to someone saying that that 2 typhoons going from Lossiemouth to Portugal doing training and then flying back is hardly a show of force.
Have the RAF always stuck to 1 or 2 aircraft formations rather than 4-6 aircrafts

Airborne
Airborne
2 days ago
Reply to  Puffing Billy

It shows a capability, come on pal keep up!

AV
AV
2 days ago
Reply to  Airborne

Exactly, shows we can get them there on mass if needs be. Pre arranged training so not excalatory but sends the same message non the less.
Do me a favour mate and respond to this, interesting to see if the bell thingy is working lol
Messaged Johnski too but not holding out for a reply in that respect 😂👍

Airborne
Airborne
2 days ago
Reply to  AV

The bell works mate, it’s the first time I’ve had a reply flagged up for a few weeks 👍

AV
AV
2 days ago
Reply to  Airborne

Not working my end, but time yet….cheers mate.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
2 days ago
Reply to  AV

Bells working!

AV
AV
2 days ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

Not my end 🤔

AV
AV
2 days ago
Reply to  AV

Do you need to click on the icon everytime?..cheers

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 day ago
Reply to  AV

Just once, the bell should be black inside a white square.

[email protected]

AV
AV
2 minutes ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

Thanks Nigel 👍

David Barry
David Barry
1 day ago
Reply to  AV

Foxtrot knows.

Finally, had a reply to ONE of my posts…

AV
AV
1 day ago
Reply to  David Barry

Cheers Dave bell notification worked for your reply…1st one in months!
Thanks for the update.

David Barry
David Barry
1 day ago
Reply to  AV

Stone the crows! I got yours!

AV
AV
1 day ago
Reply to  David Barry

Likewise! 2 in the same day!

Donaldson
Donaldson
2 days ago

The Voyager fleet has been busy in the last couple months, Very capable refuelling aircraft

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
2 days ago
Reply to  Donaldson

True.

I wonder if the part timers have been called up?

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
2 days ago

Could we launch this from the carriers? I know we are looking at a launch system in the coming years.

GA-ASI, Leonardo fly Seaspray maritime radar on MQ-9 UAV29 APRIL 2022

“General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc (GA-ASI) and Leonardo have integrated and flown the Seaspray 7500E V2 active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar on an MQ-9A Reaper Block 5 testbed, the unmanned aircraft system (UAS) manufacturer announced on 26 April.”

https://www.janes.com/defence-news/c4isr-command-tech/latest/ga-asi-leonardo-fly-seaspray-maritime-radar-on-mq-9-uav

DRS
DRS
2 days ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

I think we can get the Mojave on carriers especially with a fair wind

Decent short field performance and good range and load out.

https://www.ga-asi.com/remotely-piloted-aircraft/mojave

DRS
DRS
2 days ago
Reply to  DRS

PERFORMANCE
Takeoff Distance (ISR): 400 ft (122m)
Takeoff Distance (12 Hellfires): 1,000 ft (304m)
Maximum Endurance: 25+ hr
Runway: Semi-improved

Will fit in with other drone types we already operate and massively improve capabilities for carriers without needing a catapult.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
2 days ago
Reply to  DRS

Many thanks!

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
1 day ago
Reply to  DRS

I think the navy are best making a platform that fits the carriers rather than make the carriers work round the platform.
I’m guessing that’s what they are doing already with the developments. So much potential. Some UAV providing overwatch etc, others going as wingmen with F35. Some other doing search patterns with merlins. So many possibilities

John Hartley
John Hartley
2 days ago

With Putin’s threats & bluster, I think the UK should keep RAF T1 Typhoons in service until late 2020s/early 2030s. Until a replacement (F-35A/Tempest) comes along. The RAF still needs numbers if it is to defend UK + help allies in Europe/Worldwide.

Paul42
Paul42
2 days ago
Reply to  John Hartley

Agreed. We simply have too few airframes these days. If we retire tranche 1, we should order new builds……

Last edited 2 days ago by Paul42
Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
2 days ago
Reply to  John Hartley

I think it would be a wise decision to add some more to the list under the circumstances.

“The latest estimated cost of the RAF Typhoon programme was some £17.6 billion ( demonstration and manufacture) – making it the most expensive weapon system yet produced for the UK Armed Forces. A rough unit cost estimate is £110 million (demonstration and manufacture divided by 160 aircraft).”

John Hartley
John Hartley
2 days ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

The Austrians are about to spend 175,000 euros per plane to upgrade their T1 Eurofighters to the new regulations, so they can keep flying. If you are right that each Eurofighter costs £110 million, then 175k euros to keep each T1 going for the next decade, is a bargain.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
2 days ago
Reply to  John Hartley

In some cases with over half the airframe hours left so yes it would be.

Marked
Marked
2 days ago
Reply to  John Hartley

Not the same as upgrading to the same capabilities as t2 or t3, if it was it would be a no brainer to upgrade our t1’s. That’s pocket change money.

Regardless, I’d prefer to see the t1 remain in service in the QRA role in the UK. Free up the 2 and 3s for deployment to Europe where their multi role abilities are needed. It’s a waste having a small fleet of multi role aircraft tied to a purely air defence mission.

The same old problem of not spending the budget smartly.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 day ago
Reply to  Marked

“Regardless, I’d prefer to see the t1 remain in service in the QRA role in the UK”

We need something that’s for sure!

https://edition.cnn.com/videos/world/2022/04/29/nato-fighter-jets-intercept-russian-planes-starr-newsroom-vpx.cnn

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
1 day ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

An ideal situation would be treasury coughing up money for 24+ more typhoons and the whole fleet going to same standard. The T1 can go if that would happen. I don’t think the total numbers should drop.
Also if it keeps the factory busy until tempest is ready to start that would work out well.
As with most things it’s buy lots then none then some more and it probably messes up costs, workforce etc rather than say 6 a year for next 10 years. Or whatever works out most cost efficient.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 day ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

In an ideal world, we would replace all T1s and sell them to a Nato friendly country.

Equipping them with Marte ER would also be a bonus short-term.

Shane Ramshaw
Shane Ramshaw
2 days ago

Show of force? 2 planes?

Airborne
Airborne
2 days ago
Reply to  Shane Ramshaw

Show of capability! Where there’s two, there more.

David Barry
David Barry
1 day ago
Reply to  Airborne

We’ve all heard the story of the PARA baiting the Germans over a hill and 10 of them rushing over….

… only for a survivor to crawl back and shout it’s a trap… there is a 2nd hidden PARA…

However, this is the RAF we are talking about.

Hosepipe
Hosepipe
1 day ago

The deployment of two Sqns would be a demonstrable show of force and commitment – but two ac, that’s more a liaison visit. Let’s not overegg things…..