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Eurofighter upgrades move closer to operational release

A package of upgrades for the Eurofighter Typhoon has moved closer to operational release, following the completion of flight test activities by consortium partner company Cassidian.

Taking place at company sites in Manching, Germany and Getafe, Spain, the "intensive" test effort, using instrumented production aircraft 4 and 7, has validated the Phase 1 Enhancement (P1E) programme, says Cassidian. This, it adds, "delivers a simultaneous multi-/swing-role capability to the nations' air forces", and will be available to customers from end-2013.

"The Phase 1 Enhancements will provide a significant leap in the Eurofighter's operational capabilities. Deploying multiple weapons with attack constraints simultaneously in all weather has never been easier," says Chris Worning, Eurofighter project pilot at Cassidian.

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Cassidian

Key elements of the P1E package include the full integration of Rafael's Litening targeting pod and precision-guided bombs, and the full digital integration of the Diehl BGT Defence IRIS-T short-range air-to-air missile.

Coalition activities will be improved through the addition of Mode 5 identification friend-or-foe equipment, and updated Multifunctional Information Distribution System/Link 16 functionality, with improved radios also part of the package.

Further enhancements, including the integration of MBDA's Meteor beyond-visual-range air-to-air missile and an active electronically scanned array radar are also planned.

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