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C4iSR: Air

Germany orders enhanced BOZ-pods for Tornados

11 April 2017

The German Air Force (Luftwaffe) has ordered Saab enhanced BOZ-101 EC electronic warfare (EW) pods for its Panavia Tornado combat aircraft.

BOZ-pods can be seen on the starboard outer-pylons of this flight of Luftwaffe Tornados. The service has ordered 29 of the enhanced BOZ-101 EC versions of the pod. (Luftwaffe)BOZ-pods can be seen on the starboard outer-pylons of this flight of Luftwaffe Tornados. The service has ordered 29 of the enhanced BOZ-101 EC versions of the pod. (Luftwaffe)

The order, announced by Saab on 11 April, was placed by the NATO Eurofighter 2000 and Tornado Management Agency (NETMA) on behalf of the Luftwaffe, and covers 29 of the wing-mounted pods to be delivered from 2017 through to 2020.

As noted by Saab, the BOZ-pod has been used on the Tornado as a self-protection and countermeasures system for many years already. The enhanced BOZ-101 EC consists of a missile approach warning system in the aft section and a countermeasures dispensing system designed to counter modern infrared (IR)-guided threats. Dispensing can be performed forward downwards and sideways in two adjustable directions depending on where the threat is coming from.

Production of the BOZ-101 EC will take place at Saab sites in Järfälla, Sweden, and Centurion, South Africa.

The integration of the BOZ-101 EC pods by the Luftwaffe was part of a wider upgrade of the service's Tornado fleet under the Avionics System Software Tornado Ada (ASSTA) programme. Divided into phases designated as ASSTA 1, ASSTA 2, ASSTA 3.0, and ASSTA 3.1, this effort began in 1998 and is set to be concluded in 2018 so as to keep the fleet in service out to 2025 and beyond.

While Jane's World Air Forces lists the GAF as having 70 Interdiction and Strike (IDS) and 22 Electronic Combat and Reconnaissance (ECR) variant Tornados in its inventory, only 85 aircraft from these variants will be upgraded to ASSTA 3.1 standard and maintained out to the type's planned retirement date.

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