Four Eurofighter Typhoons have touched down at the Royal Air Force's Northolt base on the edge of London to participate in a nine-day exercise intended to validate the UK government's Olympic air security plan.

The temporary deployment of aircraft from RAF Coningsby, Lincolnshire, on 2 May, represents the first time that fighters have been based at Northolt since the Second World War, the Ministry of Defence says. They will participate in exercise "Olympic Guardian" until 10 May, along with other fixed-wing aircraft and helicopters from the RAF, British Army and Royal Navy.

 RAF Typhoon Northolt - Crown Copyright

© SAC Steve Buckley/Crown Copyright

"The exercise will test the procedures military aircrews will use to intercept and communicate with aircraft breaching the restricted airspace during the Olympic Games, and the actions pilots must take in response," the MoD says. "Pilots entering the restricted airspace can expect to be intercepted by Typhoon fighters, or military helicopters."

 RAF Typhoons Northolt - Crown Copyright

© SAC Neil Chapman/Crown Copyright

Four Northolt-based Typhoons will take part in the exercise until 10 May 

Peak aircraft activity during the exercise is expected to occur on 5-6 May, it adds.

Northolt-based Typhoons will provide quick reaction alert cover for the capital during the Olympics, the opening ceremony for which will occur on 27 July.

Source: Flight International