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Typhoon Development Continues To Move Forward In UK

15 Oct 2007 | Ref. 320

Warton, UK. - Following the announcement that Royal Air Force Typhoons have formally taken up operational duties in the UK, development of the world's most advanced swing role combat aircraft continues apace at BAE Systems.

Typhoon Instrumented Production Aircraft 6, known as IPA6 and based at BAE Systems site at Warton in the UK, has just completed engine runs. This is the first time the aircraft has worked as a complete system independently of ground support equipment and is a major milestone towards clearing the aircraft for first flight later this year.

Following its first flight, IPA6 will carry out crucial testing leading to the delivery of the first Tranche 2 aircraft to the four Eurofighter partner nations and the development of the capability required by potential export customers.

RAF Typhoons took on their first operational duties in the summer, when they assumed responsibility for the Quick Reaction Alert (QRA) element of UK air defence in the southern part of the country at RAF Coningsby, Lincolnshire. Over the next nine months they will progressively replace Tornado F3s which have performed this duty for many years.

UK Defence Minister Lord Drayson said: "The Quick Reaction Alert provides a vital capability protecting the UK's airspace. Typhoon is the RAF's newest and most capable aircraft, and is now providing a vital contribution to the security of the UK. As Minister for Defence Equipment and Support I am very pleased that Typhoon gives the RAF the next generation of capability which will remain a world-leading aircraft as it continues to be developed and exploited."

In a further boost to the Typhoon programme, BAE Systems and the UK MoD's Defence Equipment and Support organisation have taken another significant step towards establishing a Partnered Through-life Availability Support solution for the Typhoon weapon system. The signing of a 10.9 million, two year contract between the two organisations , supporting the underlying principles of the Government's Defence Industrial Strategy, will see the Typhoon Maintenance and Upgrade (TMU) facility at RAF Coningsby jointly managed and manned by BAE Systems and the RAF, minimising aircraft down-time by conducting scheduled maintenance at the same time as ongoing aircraft upgrades.

BAE Systems' Support Programmes Director Typhoon, Martin Taylor said: "The award of this contract is a key milestone for our Partnered Through-life Support solution for Typhoon. Typhoon Maintenance and Upgrade will be a key enabler for the RAF Typhoon Force as it prepares to meet its increasing operational commitments both at home and overseas".

About BAE Systems
BAE Systems is the premier global defence and aerospace company delivering a full range of products and services for air, land and naval forces, as well as advanced electronics, information technology solutions and customer support services. With 96,000 employees worldwide, BAE Systems' sales exceeded 15 billion (US $27 billion) in 2006 *.

* On a pro forma basis, assuming BAE Systems had owned Armor Holdings Inc for the whole of 2006.

For further information, please contact:
Trevor Field, BAE Systems
Tel: + 44 (0)1772 856249 Mobile: + 44 (0)7793 420413
trevor.field@baesystems.com

Scott Hailstone, BAE Systems
Tel: +44 (0) 1252 384725 Mob: +44 (0)7793 423068
scott.hailstone@baesystems.com

Issued by:
BAE Systems, Farnborough, Hampshire GU14 6YU, UK
Tel: +44 (0) 1252 384710 Fax: +44 (0) 1252 383947
24hr media hotline: + 44 (0) 7801 717739



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