The first Instrumented Series Production Aircraft (ISPA 6) configured for the Kuwaiti Air Force has successfully completed its first flight.

The aircraft is the first to fly the Captor E-Scan Radar with Phase Enhancement P3Eb, and is a key milestone for the entry into service of Eurofighter with the State of Kuwait.

This standard is the most advanced variant of the fighter jet ever made, with a package of capabilities that builds effectively on existing enhancement programmes.

“A contract for the supply of 28 Eurofighter Typhoon multi-role fighter aircraft was signed between the Ministry of Defence of the State of Kuwait and Leonardo (on 05 April 2016) through its Aircraft Division acting as Eurofighter Prime Contractor Organisation. With Captor E-Scan radar and several new additions to the weapon system, this variant will put the Kuwait Air Force at the front-line of the fighter technology when the aircraft will enter into service with the State of Kuwait in 2020.

While other aircraft in different Eurofighter Partner Companies are testing specific parts of this configuration, including the development of the E-Scan radar in UK and Germany, this is the first flight of the entire package that will be delivered to Kuwait.”

The capability package for Kuwait includes the integration of Storm Shadow and Brimstone and other air-to-surface weapons. Moreover it foresees the integration of a new advanced laser designator pod (the Lockheed Martin Sniper Advanced Targeting Pod) that will expand Eurofighter’s portfolio of cleared laser designator pods; the introduction of the DRS-Cubic ACMI P5 combat training pod and an enhanced navigation aid (VOR).

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Paul T
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Paul T

Just going by appearance’s there are two interesting points about the Kuwaiti Typhoon in the picture – 1 it’s painted in Camo colours and 2 they don’t seem to blend in with the background.

Herodotus
Guest

If you are looking upwards from the ground, it’s the right colours in Kuwait. If you want to look from above, you are, probably, already dead!

Herodotus
Guest

Surprised that they haven’t cleaned up that APU exhaust yet!

BB85
Guest
BB85

Does everyone else put it at the rear. It’s always looked awful on the typhoon with a dirty exhaust mark burnt right in the middle of the jet. It must have an aerodynamic impact too. Just such a strange place to have it when no one else seems to have located it there.

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

It still baffles me as to why we have not seen a thrust vectored version of Typhoon given the many advantages it has to offer with the addition of conformal fuel tanks to date.

https://www.flightglobal.com/eurojet-pushes-thrust-vectoring-technology-for-typhoon/89576.article

Rob N
Guest
Rob N

The thrust vectoring is good for very close combat. However with ASRAAM and the helmet mounted sight the Typhoon can already fire over-the-shoulder. Perhaps the upgrade is not cost effective. Also as ASRAAM is in fact a medium range AAM it is unlikely dogfighting is required. However it would be nice to have. I think there was also a agility enhancement package that did much the same job as the thrust vectoring. I think the new radar should be fitted to all RAF Typhoons – however I think that only the latest type can support it. It would be fab… Read more »

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

I think if you read the attached link I provided above you will find it does a lot more than that, including opening up the possibility of carrier landings!

Is this the agility enhancement package you are referring to?

Improving the Typhoon’s Aerodynamics

https://tacairnet.com/2015/07/15/improving-the-typhoons-aerodynamics/

Rob N
Guest
Rob N

Yes that is the one… I do not know why it was never taken up by the Typhoon operators. It appears to be a relatively inexpensive way of upping the planes performance…. Perhaps it was not seen as cost effective. However having it in your back pocket for a sticky situation makes sense to me. I still remember the story of the first F4 Phantoms that were not fitted with a gun because with missiles the gun would no longer be needed! Then came Vietnam… and they added a gun. Personally I would like to see the aerodynamics upgrade and… Read more »

Rob N
Guest
Rob N

P.S. given that the thrust vectoring work was about ten years ago I think if the operators were keen they would have taken up the technology by now. However there is still hope as there has been talk in the growth of the Typhoon jet so who knows…

Lee1
Guest
Lee1

Carrier landings would require much more than simply adding vectored thrust. It would have to be significantly strengthened too and have folding wings which would require a very big redesign.

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

It appears they are already looking into this.

The future of naval air power.

https://saab.com/air/gripen-fighter-system/gripen/gripen-maritime/

Lee1
Guest
Lee1

That is Gripen not Typhoon. The Gripen is already designed for short flared landings and rough strips. It will however still need extensive work to make it fit for carrier landings and given that it has far greater export potential than Typhoon it makes it a slightly more viable project.

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

Apologies Lee 1,

I thought your comments were referring to a post of mine further down this thread!

“A Christmas conundrum for the experts on here, If a thrust vectored EJ2000 with increased power was added to the Gripen E, given its already short take-off and landing capabilities, could it take off and land on a QE carrier?”

I also included the possibility of speed brakes added to a modified tail. Helps to slow down on carrier approach and useful in a dogfight as we saw during the Falklands campaign.

https://www.flightglobal.com/eurojet-aims-ej200-variant-at-thrust-vectored-gripen/21234.article

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

There is also some information on Sea Typhoon in the link below, including why it never happened!

http://ukarmedforcescommentary.blogspot.com/p/eurofighter-typhoon.html

Lee1
Guest
Lee1

That article makes light of the work needed to produce a carrier typhoon. The engine would need to be navalised (I am pretty sure the EJ2000 is not currently protected from salt etc). The fact that it has Canards is not something that can be fixed and these are a problem for carrier landings. Lengthening Undercarriage is not trivial, it requires quite extensive redesign of the structure (Which is why they did not do that with the crappy 737 Max – despite that being the much more sensible and safe approach). The weight saved by the radar is also not… Read more »

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

Far too late now to produce a Typhoon for carriers agreed, Tempest is indeed the way forward for us.

What was interesting to note was the fact that one, it was feasible to do this at the time, and two, the reason for it being cancelled.

Lee1
Guest
Lee1

We know it was feasible as it was what the French wanted out of it. It was also part of the reason they went alone with Rafael. The problem is that it was not designed for carrier ops. I can’t see how it could be either without significant modifications. For a start the undercarriage on pretty much every carrier based fighter are attached to the fuselage or at the very least the wing root. The typhoons are mid wing mounted and so I would imagine are not able to withstand the repeated impacts of crashing into a carrier. Most high… Read more »

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

Let’s hope we include a “Sea Tempest” from the start as Saab has clearly done with their E series Grippen.

Gripen Maritime is part of the Gripen E-series. Developed to counter and defeat advanced future threats, the E-series is for customers with more pronounced threats or wider territories to secure.

https://saab.com/gripen/our-fighters/gripen-fighter-system/gripen-e-series/gripen-maritime/

Lee1
Guest
Lee1

There was no point compromising the Typhoon even more by adding maritime ability. None of the partner nations had carriers capable of taking one and no other nations had expressed interest in one as such. Only France could have made use of one and they left the program partly due to the other nations not wanting to add to the complexity (and weight) by adding naval ability. Tempest could be different though, let’s see. I think it would be a good idea as the F35 will only last so long. It will need replacing and Tempest would be the ideal… Read more »

Lee1
Guest
Lee1

No. The thrust vectoring would not help a great deal with the landing. Also it would still need arrestor wires and therefore modifications to the airframe. It would also need further strengthening of the undercarriage and would need the a special version of the EJ2000 in order to not be affected by the salt.

Thrust vectoring would help a lot with takeoff however.

DaveyB
Guest
DaveyB

Theoretically, a Typhoon could already take-off from one of the QE carriers without the thrust vectoring modification. This is mostly down to its phenomenal power to weight ratio, but also its latent STOL aerodynamics. A F18E Super Hornet has taken off using the ramp at Pax River (in a clean configuration), which is designed to replicate the QE’s ramp for the F35Bs. The Typhoon has a greater power to weight ratio than the F18E, but also the Mig 29K used on the Russian and Indian carriers fitted with the ramps. The Mig uses a very short take-off length even compared… Read more »

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

What interests me is whether a Gripen E fitted with a thrust vectored EJ2x0

“The new engine plan to increase the output by 30% more power compared to the original EJ200.

“The engine will have dry thrust of around 78 kN (or 17,500 lbf) with a reheated output of around 120 kN (or 27,000 lbf”

which was proposed to Saab could take off from the QE Carriers and possibly land unassisted with the inclusion of speed brakes fitted to the tail section as seen on the space shuttle?

Or, would traps be required?

Gavin Gordon
Guest
Gavin Gordon

I cannot see evidence for the leading edge root extensions on the image at this time, though.

Spyinthesky
Guest
Spyinthesky

Isn’t that still in prototype form with the Germans, who are proposing it as an update after tests?

Rudeboy
Guest
Rudeboy

No-one has gone for the Aerodynamic Modification Kit (AMK) so far, it hasn’t been trialed in flight. Hopefully the Germans will look into it on their new batch.

The conformal tanks are dead as a dodo as well.

Peter Crisp
Guest
Peter Crisp

The UK are opting for an even more advanced radar upgrade aren’t they?

Robert blay
Guest
Robert blay

Yes, the RAF version will have electronic attack capabilities like the F35, but has a much wider field of view compared to the F35’s radar.

Frank62
Guest
Frank62

Please sir, can the RAF have some please?

Herodotus
Guest

More!!!!!!!!! you want more!!!!! Humbug Sir!

Frank62
Guest
Frank62

You must work for the treasury sir.

John Clark
Guest
John Clark

Thrust vectoring is one of the nice to have things, the reality of modern warfare, avionic and weapons systems however renders ‘TV’ of minimal use today. Taking Typhoon into account, a combination of Meteor, ASRAAM, Captor radar, ESM systems and optronics, means an Su35 (for instance) will be toasted before it gets within 40 miles. It simply turns a large fighter into a static target, I would take Thyphoons supersonic agility, with the massive retained energy, any day of the week as a more relevant air combat attribute. It can close to within Meteors firing envelope and manoeuvre out harms… Read more »

Herodotus
Guest

Yes John, I fully agree with your analysis of Typhoon. This is a Golden Platform that has immense potential…..is it too much to ask that for once ,in the post-war period, that we make the most of it?

John Clark
Guest
John Clark

Absolutely Herodotus, Tempest development ‘might’ just give renewed enthusiasm for Typhoon.

The 2020 SDSR will be a pivotal point. Hopefully Tempest will survive and be committed to.

However, if it doesn’t and DC decides to fully commit to of the shelf F35 variants for our future fighter force, then you can expect UK funded Typhoon development to stop dead in its tracks, with a trickle of funded Captor E upgrades and little else for the RAF.

DC is an unknown quantity here and he will have considerable influence over SDSR2020, I guess we will find out next year.

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

“It can close to within Meteors firing envelope and manoeuvre out harms way at supersonic speed.” Which is one of the many benefits offered with this potential upgrade. operationally significant is the speed that it gives you in supercruise because obviously the pilots are very keen on low observability at high speed. This is really an immediate operational advantage. This number – 7% more thrust in supercruise – is quite a remarkable achievement.” TVN could reduce fuel burn on a typical Typhoon mission by up to 5%, as well as increase available thrust in supercruise by up to 7% and… Read more »

Pacman27
Guest
Pacman27

Put this fuel burn into context. typhoon costs circa 50k per flight hour, so 5% efficiency saving is 2.5k per hour

across our fleet that is a substantial cost save that over several years could pay for itself.

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

That’s correct, in an article I read that the fuel-saving alone would cover the cost of installing TVN on Typhoon aircraft.

Given all the other added benefits offered by this upgrade, it astonished me that we have never even fitted it to a test and evaluation aircraft only bench tested it.

Robert blay
Guest
Robert blay

It would still be an expensive update to fit TVN, that would include a rewrite of the fly by wire system. And the RAF simply doesn’t have a requirement for it. While it does bring advantages, the experience the Typhoon force has had in exercises with the F22 has shown it it usnt the be all and end all. A very capable HMS is a far better asset.

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

“And the RAF simply doesn’t have a requirement for it.”

Fortunately, that appears not the case Robert, please note the words “planned upgrades”.

Further Eurofighter Typhoon planned upgrades include: laser warners; enhanced DASS (defence aids subsystem); thrust vectoring for greater manoeuvrability; stand-off weapons, such as Storm Shadow and Taurus; advanced targeting pods; enhanced computing abilities; and passive missile warning systems.

Taken together, these will keep Eurofighter Typhoon at the leading edge of swing-role combat aircraft technology.”

https://www.eurofighter.com/about-us

John Clark
Guest
John Clark

I would agree with Robert, I’ll wager the cost to benefit exercise was carried out by BAE Systems! By all means, get a trails working system going, (useful for Tempest research) but if the Eurofighter consortium feels it will be a massive advantage to sales etc of Typhoon , then let them pay for the development. We all know it’s never as easy as first claimed, it would require a considerable rewrite of the flight control system, a massive and expensive undertaking in its own right, never mind the engine software and hardware changes required. Any available money needs to… Read more »

Robert blay
Guest
Robert blay

Hi John. Yes I agree the Airbus developed aerodynamic kits would be much better value for money with most of the advantages of TVN, without the considerable added weight and maintance that comes with TVN, Two of the main disadvantages of TVN that is often overlooked.

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

Hi Robert, Re weight: “The Thrust Vectoring Nozzles would add a further 70 kg of weight, but this would merely compensate the weight saved by adopting an AESA radar in place of the current Mechanical one.” Re engine software and hardware changes required: “The key consideration is that the Thrust Vectoring Nozzle could be adopted with nearly no modifications at all on existing Typhoons, and even the software of the avionics system would merely require a relatively simple update since the new nozzle would be simply seen as another control surface.” Re “Airbus developed aerodynamic kits would be much better… Read more »

Robert blay
Guest
Robert blay

https://www.flightglobal.com/airbus-dands-completes-typhoon-aerodynamic-testing/117638.article

Hi Nigel. The above article explains the advantages of the Areo kits developed by Aibus.

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

Thank you, Robert, what I’m wondering is how the LERX kit has most of the advantages offered by TVN?

It appears to me that they are two sets of independent advantages if you see what I mean.

That being said, there is still plenty of life left in Typhoon and hopefully, we will take advantage of both including additional thrust provided by the EJ230 and the new precooler from Reaction.

Robert blay
Guest
Robert blay

The advantages are how the article explains, the big increase in the maximum angle of attack, the ability to point to nose at low speed, Improved turn rate, roll rate ect. TVN does bring advantages to fuel burn and supercruise, but is it enough for the cost. The Typhoon out performs all current fast jets, except the F22 when it comes to supersonic agility and supercruise performance in it’s current configuration.

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

As I posted above, here is the link to the full range of advantages offered by TVN.

There may be more!

https://www.flightglobal.com/eurojet-pushes-thrust-vectoring-technology-for-typhoon/89576.article

Robert blay
Guest
Robert blay

I don’t doubt the advantages, but that article is 10 years old, and alot has changed since then. I think the next gen fighters (Tempest) Wil move behond TVN.

Expat
Guest
Expat

I believe when German Typhoons went up against the Raptor in Red Flag Alaska 2013 they beat the Raptor in WVR. The main reason for this was because the Raptor used their TVN. Article below.

https://theaviationist.com/2012/07/13/fia12-typhoon-raptor/

Robert blay
Guest
Robert blay

Thanks for the link Expat 🤙have a great New Years eve

Robert blay
Guest
Robert blay

I think also, the Typhoons performance in it’s current configuration is phenomenal, and many multinational exercises and real operations have shown just how good the airframe and engine performance really is. The EJ200 really is a gem of a fighter engine.

Andy
Guest
Andy

All these upgrades will just flow into tempest I presume, great strategy to continuing upgrading typhoon and getting fantastic testing time on all this.

Steve
Guest
Steve

Just amazes me that the member nations have allowed another nation, have a better specced jet than them.

Whilst its unlikely that we will go to war with Kuwait, its not impossible, considering their domestic politics are highly questionable.

WatcherZero
Guest
WatcherZero

Its the first full tranche 3 spec, they were supposed to be ordered by the partners but they have been slow to turn options into firm orders and so production has slowed down with Germany the only one close to firming its orders. They are funding Various enhancement packages though (Germany engine upgrade, britain sensor upgrades) as well as other developmental work building into Tempest (like this new radar threat detector which is a tenth the weight but three times as accurate as the existing version) which means if and when the partners order they will be even better than… Read more »

John Clark
Guest
John Clark

It’s always been the same Steve, the Kuwaiti and Saudi BAC export Lightning F56/T55’s were better than the Lightning the RAF flew.

Some things never change….

Robert blay
Guest
Robert blay

Hi Steve. Fighter’s get developed much quicker then home nations requirements or need. There are many versions of the F16 and F15 being flown by foreign nations that are more capable the the current USAF fleet. The RAF’s Typhoons will soon surpass the Kuwait models when it receives an even more capable ASEA R2 radar with electronic attack and the brand new Striker 2 HMS. Countries like Kuwait also have a budget to spend on new fast jets because they don’t have much in the way of a Navy to pay for, or a nuclear deterrent ect or highly a… Read more »

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

A Christmas conundrum for the experts on here, If a thrust vectored EJ2000 with increased power was added to the Gripen E, given its already short take-off and landing capabilities, could it take off and land on a QE carrier?

https://www.flightglobal.com/eurojet-aims-ej200-variant-at-thrust-vectored-gripen/21234.article

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

“Hans Einerth, wing commander flying at Saab, demonstrates Gripen’s Short Take-off And Landing capabilities in a simulator environment at Aero India 2019. Gripen is designed to take-off and land on regular roads (800 m long and 16 m wide). This allows for dispersed operations by the operating Air Force, resulting in better combat preparedness.”

https://saab.com/gripen/news/blog/gripen-blog/2019/how-to-take-off-and-land-on-a-regular-road/

DaveyB
Guest
DaveyB

There are two key requirements for a dynamic and agile stol aircraft. One is aerodynamics, the other is the aircraft’s power to weight ratio. The Gripen has excellent short field performance, mostly due to its canard coupled delta wing design. The single F404 engine is the problem. For max weight take-offs it hasn’t the thrust for stol operations. So requires a lengthened run up for take off. The issue here is that using a pair of EJ200s is a more powerful combination. So for pure dogfighting, the Typhoon has the advantage due it’s greater power to weight ratio. What this… Read more »

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

Agreed Davey B

Eurojet has proposed to Saab a 102kN (23,000lb)-thrust version of its engine, called the EJ230, combined with an axisymmetric thrust-vectoring nozzle so I wondered if the Gripen E using this combination could, in theory, take off and land on the QE carriers?

In addition, with Reaction engines pre-coolers installed there is the potential for both aircraft to use the flight deck of the QE carriers rather than only the F35B?

I’m simply trying to find a solution to maximise the potential of the carriers without the added expense and fitting of EMALS!

John Clark
Guest
John Clark

It’s an interesting idea Nigel. First off we would need to add an angled flight deck, to allow bolters. I would have thought the proposed (on paper) EJ260 with 26000lb of thrust, coupled with powerful boundary layer controls and thrust vectoring, might just be able to operate from a QE class, though it would need the whole deck to launch and stopping would be a white buckle ride, requiring the whole length of flight deck and only in the most benign of weather conditions. Any rough sea would make the ship pitch on its access and mean touching down further… Read more »

John Clark
Guest
John Clark

Further thoughts, to get the touch down speed of this proposed Naval variant down to 75 knots
(absolute maximum) you would also need larger wings and cannards, both of which would need ‘very powerful’ boundary layer blowing.

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

A step in the right direction John! Could Typhoon and Gripen benefit from these suggestions? Fitting the Reaction Engine precooler would further increase power for carrier takeoff as well as allow the aircraft to fly higher and faster. So, as we know EMAL fitting costs between £2/3B per carrier, all we would require in theory, in that case, are traps. Not sure how much that would cost? Additionally, would it not make financial sense to redesign the tail and include a split rudder speed brake as seen on the space shuttle? reducing landing speeds even further and improvements to breaking… Read more »

DaveyB
Guest
DaveyB

Boundary layer control requires at least 20% of the engines power to generate lift as found on the fabulous buccaneer aircraft. However, boundary layer control does mean you can use a smaller wing (good for low level stuff). The canard on a Typhoon, much like the Rafale’s, does not generate much lift compared to the Gripen’s, so boundary layer control would be wasted on it. A split rudder will generate more drag, if the left and right halves don’t move with each other. To clarify, if one half doesn’t move, but the other does, a void is left between the… Read more »

Andy
Guest
Andy

Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should.

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

Clearly, but at a cost of fitting EMALS to the carriers (£2/3Billion) think how much it would cost to field a demonstrator if it were indeed possible which was my question, to begin with.

Meirion X
Guest
Meirion X

It is out of the question, that a single engine aircraft would be use for sea based operations!

Herodotus
Guest

A4,A7 come to mind and substantial numbers of them over the years.

TopBoy
Guest
TopBoy

F35?????

Rob N
Guest
Rob N

I am not sure why you would spend extra money to put a 4 generation plant on a carrier when you could use a 5 or 6 gen one…Has anyone come across the RSVL as used by F35 on QE. I know it is disconcerting for some to have a large aircraft carrier and not have a F18 style plane on it but we do not need an F18 on the QE class…. we just use some F35s in stealth mode and others in ‘beast’ mode. No 4 gen missile trucks Needed.

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

The answer is other countries who use the Grippen could potentially make use of the carriers in time of conflict.

Secondly, they are already cleared for Meteor and many other munitions besides, the F35B will not be until 2025 and still requires the expensive Block 4 upgrade in order to do so.

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

Could this also be a good reason Rob N?

Forces Network 9th October 2019 at 11:43am

HOW MUCH WILL IT COST?

The overall programme is the most expensive weapons system in military history. An estimated cost from 2015 put the price at £78 million per jet, without engine or electronics.

For everything included, the Lightnings come in at a grand total of £190 million.

https://www.forces.net/news/what-you-need-know-about-f-35b

Rob N
Guest
Rob N

Unfortunately you have to pay a price for the new kit. The Russians and Chinese will nor stop introducing new kit so we can take a 4 gen holiday!

While I accept the Meteor could be effective on either a F35 or Grippen – that is not the whole story as you must know. F35 offers offensive strike against advanced air defence protected targets something Grippen would struggle to do. There is a reason Grippen is cheap and that is because it is less capable.

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

I personally think that the latest Grippen E/F is a very capable aircraft designed with the future in mind at a very respectable price (£65M).

As for defeating advanced air defence protected targets?
https://saab.com/air/gripen-fighter-system/gripen/gripen-ef/

As we move forward with Tempest I’m sure more technologies will be shared between both Typhoon and Grippen making them an even more formidable package.

Rob N
Guest
Rob N

I am sure it is a very capable plane but it is less stealthy then F35 and the F35 has better data fission.

I am very happy to think that Sweden and the UK are getting together on Tempest (with the Italians). These partners should make a fab team. I think Airbus are still trying to get the UK to join their project to get their hands on UK propulsion technology. I think the Swedish will add lots of innovation to Tempest. Having Italy with us is great too.

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

Not quite sure about the better data fusion though Rob, only time will tell I guess?

“However, the manufacturer has confirmed that its state-of-the-art communications system cannot link up with older planes.

This means the RAF’s F-35 pilots will have to switch to older systems to make contact with the UK’s Typhoon fighters, losing their stealth capability and becoming detectable by enemy forces.

These technology problems could turn out to be extremely costly, with some estimates saying that we could expect delays of up to five years and additional costs.”

https://www.forces.net/news/what-you-need-know-about-f-35b

John Clark
Guest
John Clark

Absolutely Nigel, Gripen E is an extremely capable aircraft, unfortunately it comes fowl of one of the key forces affecting combat aircraft procurement.

Thrust, lift, drag and politics!

US pressure has meant countries like the Netherlands and Norway etc, who would have been perfectly well served by Gripen E, have gone for the F35 instead.

Rob N
Guest
Rob N

The US have been very aggressive in pushing other countries to buy it. In some cases this goes too far e.g. Turkey bought the plane and when they did not continue to buy US they were punished…. However do not forget that 15% of F35 is UK built and so we profit too.

John Clark
Guest
John Clark

That’s true Rob, we do very well out of F35 sales, I just find it odd when countries like Switzerland rejected the Gripen E out of hand when it’s about a perfect fit for that country as there possibly could be, curious……

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

Ever so sadly John, there’s a great deal of potential in this aircraft as I have stated and of course that of Typhoon.

If Russia cracks the code for stealth within the next five years, we will be left with an extremely expensive sitting duck onboard our carriers.

They already possess the technology to track the F35 at a given distance, but currently cannot get a lock.

https://www.popularmechanics.com/military/aviation/a29307410/radar-tracking-f-35/

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

Germany offers another example of how countries are trying to beat stealth.

https://www.popularmechanics.com/military/aviation/a29307410/radar-tracking-f-35/

DaveyB
Guest
DaveyB

Doesn’t work over water.

DaveyB
Guest
DaveyB

The actual tracking of the aircraft was a fix. For starters the two aircraft had their luneburg lenses fitted, which meant they had a least 4 times their normal RCS. The company who tracked them also had spotters letting them know when the aircraft took off and in which direction. So when they say they tracked the aircraft, I’m highly sceptical, especially as they didn’t release the data when asked. Until someone cracks both quantum computing and radar, stealth aircraft will always be incredibly difficult to detect, the laws governing electro-magnetic waves and how they interact with materials has not… Read more »

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

Many thanks for your detailed analysis Davy.

Meirion X
Guest
Meirion X

I meant for CATOBAR operations, non STOVL aircraft.

Meirion X
Guest
Meirion X

I was hoping that the F-35B will be the exception for single engine aircraft, not the norm!

Trevor
Guest
Trevor

Does not a carrier based aircraft have to be strong enough for carrier operations and be none or less corrosive?

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

Yes, but land testing (runway and ski ramp) is all that is required along with a test aircraft if the math works out on paper to fly a Gripen E with the uprated thrust vectored EJ2000 engine.

Meirion X
Guest
Meirion X

It seems the USN’s F-35C is still low on numbers and not much news on operations?

BB85
Guest
BB85

It will be interesting to see what the USN does. I don’t think the F18 will be able to compete against a fully developed stealth Chinese fighter in 10 years time. Maybe if it still has better sensors and missiles it could but I think its already at its limited. The USN don’t seem to want the F35 but I can’t see anything new entering front line service before 2035-40.

Heidfirst
Guest
Heidfirst

I am pretty sure that the underc arriage at least would require a redesign/refit for carrier ops (Saab iirc have already done preliminary work on a carrier version of the Gripen but nobody has bitten – there are after all only a few nations with suitably sized carriers).

Nigel Collins
Guest
Nigel Collins

Very interesting Heidfirst, Has it been designed for cats and traps or a possible use with the QE carriers in mind?

Paul T
Guest
Paul T

The idea of a Carrier Gripen was more aimed at Brazil and India – Brazil obviously doesn’t have a need for it now and India has bought Might 29’s with it’s own Tejas in development.