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Typhoon Fatigue Testing Hits 1000 Hours

13 Sep 2005

The full scale fatigue test for the Eurofighter Typhoon, known as P-MAFT (Production - Major Airframe Fatigue Test) has now completed 1,000 test hours, which involves applying half a million load distributions. This process will be repeated 18 times to complete the full scale test over 5 years the equivalent to a 25 year in-service life.

The next major milestone will be 3,000 hours of testing equating to approximately 1,000 hours of flight clearance, at which point physical testing surpasses clearance by calculation.

The testing is conducted at the Structural and Dynamic Test (S&DT) Facility at BAE Systems Brough site in Yorkshire and will provide evidence for the qualification of the airframe, on behalf of the four-nation Eurofighter partnership.

The P-MAFT Typhoon comprises all six major units (front, centre and rear fuselages, left and right hand wings and fin), flying surfaces, canopy and windscreen and the undercarriage. On the test, aerodynamic loads are applied to the structure along with internal pressures to the cockpit and fuel tanks. Inertia loads generated by the major masses, such as the engines, pylons and avionic components are also applied.

The Brough team has worked closely with partner companies FCS Control Systems and HBM, to develop an integrated control and data acquisition system, capable of meeting the demands of qualifying the worlds most advanced swing-role combat aircraft.

Recent developments in technology have provided an integrated force control and safety system to ensure maximum integrity of all the loads applied to the airframe through the 116 hydraulic actuators and the eight pneumatic pressure control systems. The health and integrity of the structure is continually monitored by 2,300 instrumentation channels recording the strains generated by the applied loads.


BAE Systems is an international company engaged in the development, delivery, and support of advanced defence and aerospace systems in the air, on land, at sea, and in space. The Company designs, manufactures, and supports military aircraft, combat vehicles, surface ships, submarines, radar, avionics, communications, electronics, and guided weapon systems. It is a pioneer in technology with a heritage stretching back hundreds of years and is at the forefront of innovation, working to develop the next generation of intelligent defence systems. BAE Systems has major operations across five continents and customers in some 130 countries. The Company employs over 90,000 people and generates annual sales of approximately 14.8 billion through its wholly owned and joint-venture operations.

For further information, please contact:

Debbie Stott, BAE Systems
Tel: +44 (0) 1772-852995

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