The UK Royal Air Force (RAF) has upgraded two Nimrod R-1 intelligence aircraft to deploy them to Afghanistan later this year.

The two Nimrods, belonging to 51 Squadron, received unspecified upgrades including the communications intelligence suite upgrade at RAF Waddington in Lincolnshire, according to

It will be the last major deployment of the Nimrod aircraft before it retires in March 2011.

The UK will replace its Nimrod R-1s with three RC-135 rivet joint platforms based on the C-135 Stratolifter.