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In response to the problems of policing the UN ‘no-fly’ zone over Bosnia, the Royal Navy and RAF have been playing ‘hunter’ and ‘hunted’ in the hill of central Wales. A report by Patrick Allen.
IN THE PAST, fast jets were not considered a major threat to helicopters. Air defence lighters were usually busy at higher altitudes, worrying about their combat air patrol (CAP) area and looking for enemy air defence aircraft. Close air support and low-level bomber/attack aircraft usually had their specific targets and were either time or fuel critical as they executed their specific missions. If these aircraft
Continue reading Flick-knifes vs Jungles
IT WAS labelled by the Chairman of the Commons Public Accounts Committee in 2003… «one of the most incompetent procurements of all time».
These eight Chinook HC.3 transport helicopters have never been cleared for service, and have been kept in storage at Boscombe Down, Wiltshire, ever since delivery.
Ordered in 1995, the HC.3 aircraft were conceived as dedicated special forces helicopters, built to a unique standard, with a hybrid digital/ analogue cockpit. There were some problems in fitting the planned displays, however, and the aircraft had to be stored while the final avionics fit was being decided and redesigned, delaying
Continue reading Fleetlands To Fix Chinook HC.3s ?
JAGUAR RETIRED EARLY
RAF 16 (Reserve) Squadron Jaquar GR.3A XZ392 ‘PF’ departs RAF Fairford, Gloucestershire, on July 19 after this year’s Royal International Air Tattoo (see pages 78-82). As part of the newly-announced defence cuts, the entire RAF Jaquar fleet will have been withdrawn by October 2007.
DETAILS OF the long-expected UK defence cuts were finally officially revealed in Parliament on July 21 by Secretary of State for Defence Geoff Hoon, when he presented a new Defence Command Paper, CM6269, entitled Delivering Security in a Changing World: Future Capabilities. Unlike the last Defence White Paper (see A New Vision?, February,
Continue reading FIVE RAF FIGHTER UNITS TO GO
Philip Belsham, FRCS, Consultant in Accident and Emergency Medicine to a leading London hospital, looks at the hostile environment in which the modern military pilot operates, in the first of a series about aviation medicine.
THE HUMAN ANIMAL, Homo sapiens, has, over the millennia of his evolution, become superbly adapted to his environment. Although his leas are not as fast as the Cheetah, his strength not that of the bear, his eyesight not as sharp as the cat, and his sense of smell not that of the dog, he has still become monster of the whole land surface of the
Continue reading Fit to Fly
ILYUSHIN DIRECTOR-General Viktor Livanov announced on July 20 that flight-testing of the first upgraded Ilyushin Il-20 Coot-A electronic intelligence aircraft is complete.
He said the aircraft carries «new, more advanced radio-electronic equipment», but declined to provide details of the new equipment fit. Original equipment included a 26ft (7.9m)-long Igla-1 sideways-looking airborne radar pod under the forward fuselage, plus two A-87P panoramic cameras in the forward section and antennas for the Romb ELINT system in the rear of lateral fairings on the front fuselage. A series of large and small antennae under the fuselage are for the Kvadrat ELINT system —
Continue reading First Upgraded Il-20 Completes Flight Testing
LOCKHEED MARTIN flew the first F-16 for Royal Air Force of Oman (RAFO), the first two-seat F-16D Block 50, 801 (c/n TQ-1, USAF/02-2123), from Fort Worth, Texas, on July 8. Under the Peace A’sama A’safiya (Clear Skies) Foreign Military Sales (FMS) programme, the RAFO is acquiring a total of 12 F-16C/D Block 50+ aircraft, comprising eight F-16Cs with c/ns TP-1 to TP-8 (USAF serials 02-2115 to 02-2122) and four F-16Ds, TQ-1 to TQ-4 (USAF/02-2123 to 02-2126). Apart from the first aircraft seen at Fort Worth, 801 (which takes up a serial previously used on a Hunter 1.66), RAFO serials for
Continue reading First Omani F-16 Flies
After this warning the pilot would have to fly on his altimeter. Therein lay a new problem. The standard aneroid (pressure operated) altimeter was not sensitive enough to provide the degree of accuracy required at low level. In any case, ambient barometric pressure over the target would be impossible to predict.
The dropping trials of Upkeep, taking place in daylight, used a radio altimeter.
A pulse from the aircraft, bounced off the water below, was timed and translated into height. Ideal over open water for heights up to 150 feet, it was less reliable over the enclosed waters of a
Continue reading Finding the Height
RUNNING FROM Monday September 2 to Sunday September 8, with trade-only days Monday to Friday and public days on Saturday/Sunday, the 1996 Society of British Aerospace Contractors’ show at Farnborough has been considerably improved since the last event in 1994.
The old familiar blue and white striped halls and chalets, built by the same contractor to the same style since the show moved to Farnborough in 1948, have finally been replaced by light, bright and modern clear-span structures. The weekend public days have also been enhanced to attract more families to the show, resulting in the introduction of in-flight simulators,
Continue reading Farnborough 96
First Upgraded Italian tornado on show
HAVING ONLY just delivered the first two upgraded Italian Air Force (AMI) Tornado IDS aircraft in the week before Famborough, Alenia Aeronautica displayed its first Mid-Life Upgrade (MLU) aircraft, MM7063, at the show. Under a 35 million Euro contract signed in July 2002, a total of 18 AMI Tornado IDS aircraft will be upgraded, under a two-phase programme.
Work in the first phase will include a modernised avionics suite with new integrated navigation systems (laser inertial navigation system and embedded GPS). The upgrade will also include installation of two Marconi Selenia Communications digital V/UHF
Continue reading FARNBDROUGH SHOW REPORT
FOUR F-1 6s roar overhead on departure from Trapani airbase in Sicily, home of the 37th Wing (37° Stormo) and one of the Italian Air Force’s two main operating bases for the type. The first Fighting Falcons arrived there less than five years ago, replacing the venerable F-104 Starfighter. In three years time, the F-16 will be retired at the end of its brief tenure with the Italian Air Force.
On February 1, 2001, the Italian Ministry of Defence (MoD) announced its decision to lease the Lockheed Martin F-16A Air Defence Fighter (ADF) for the Aeronautica Militare Italiano
Continue reading Falcons Italian