Air Platforms

BAE Systems exploits synergies between Typhoon and Tempest

08 August 2019

A Eurofighter Typhoon sits alongside a concept model of Tempest, a vision of the UK’s future combat aircraft, at BAE Systems' site in Warton, Lancashire. Source: BAE Systems

Key Points

  • Technology insertions in the Typhoon programme are setting out a path to the kind of capabilities that could be used by a future Tempest next-generation aircraft
  • Similarly, some future production technologies that will play into Tempest are already being exploited by the Typhoon programme

BAE Systems is exploiting synergies between its spiral development of the Eurofighter Typhoon and its initial studies as part of Team Tempest: the UK initiative to develop a next-generation combat air capability.

At a media facility at its site in Warton, Lancashire, on 7 August the company outlined some of the main technologies it is pursuing and how they play into both projects.

BAE Systems has completed Project Centurion: the programme under which the weapon capabilities of the Tornado GR4 strike aircraft were transferred onto the Typhoon, allowing the GR4 to be retired from service in February this year. The company is now working on a package to deliver additional Typhoon capabilities for Kuwait and Qatar, which have ordered 28 and 24 fighters, respectively. The aircraft will be the first Typhoons to feature active electronically scanned-array radar (AESA) technology in the form of the Captor-E radar, for which Leonardo is the prime contractor. The first delivery of Typhoons to Kuwait, which will feature the baseline Mk0 version of the Captor-E, is expected by the end of next year.

Andy Flynn, BAE Systems/Eurofighter capability delivery director for Typhoon, noted that an enhanced version of the Captor-E radar has a 'target date' for delivery around 2024 as part of the Phase IV Enhancement for British aircraft. Clive Marrison, BAE Systems' industry requirements director for Team Tempest, said the advanced Mk2 or 'ECRS2' iteration of the Captor-E radar, which features new hardware and is in the design stage with Leonardo, will create AESA radar technology developments and concepts that will be drawn upon in the design of Tempest sensors.

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