RAF Eurofighters at halfway point in modification programme

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BAE Systems has reached the halfway point in a major programme to upgrade the UK Royal Air Force's earliest Eurofighter Typhoons.

Launched in 2006, the modification programme has recently redelivered its 22nd of 43 Tranche 1 production aircraft, says Martin Taylor, director availability and support programmes for BAE's Military Air Systems business unit.

Work is now under way at the company's Warton site in Lancashire on aircraft up to number 31, with key modifications including making improvements to the Typhoon's ground refuelling system and air-to-ground weapons carriage capability, plus providing a structural enhancement to its tail fin.

To conclude in 2012, the upgrade programme will bring the RAF's Tranche 1 Block 1, 2 and 2B-standard aircraft to a common, Block 5 standard.