The United Kingdom and partner nations Germany, Italy and Spain have signed a £830 million pound contract to provide the Typhoon with the new CAPTOR-E AESA radar.
The deal was announced following a meeting of partner nation representatives in Edinburgh on the 19th of November. The four nation-backed Typhoon is produced by BAE Systems, Airbus Group and Alenia Aermacchi. BAE Systems said its share of the deal to develop the Captor E-Scan radar for the jet fighter was worth £365m. The deal secures 500 jobs at Selex ES in Edinburgh, Scotland.
According to a BAE press release:
“This will give Eurofighter Typhoon one of the most advanced radar systems in the world providing a wider field of regard than any other combat aircraft. Other benefits include increased detection and tracking ranges, advanced air-to-surface capability and enhanced electronic protection measures.”
Once development and testing have been completed, the new radar will be installed in new-build Tranche 3A Typhoons. It is understood that it can also be fitted to Tranche 2 production aircraft but that this would require structural modification.
Eurofighter’s chief executive Alberto Gutierrez said the addition of E-Scan to the jets represented a “pivotal moment” for the project, providing a weapons system which is “unmatched”.
According to a statement from Eurofighter:
“This milestone confirms the commitment of the four nations to provide the Eurofighter Typhoon with the best capabilities to seize current and emerging opportunities in the export market”
The Eurofighter consortium described the radar as the world’s most advanced Active Electronically Scanned Array Radar System. The CAPTOR-E system has greatly increased range, faster detection and tracking of targets, improved tracking performance, increased operational availability and a raft of new features available.
BAE Systems managing director of combat air Martin Taylor said in a statement:
“From the outset, the aircraft was built with capability enhancement in mind and this step is proof that we are developing Typhoon to keep it relevant for today and for the future.”
It is expected that the integration of an AESA radar will help boost export sales of the aircraft, somethign which hasn’t been forthcoming as of yet.