Eurofighter has signed a €1bn contract with the Nato Eurofighter and Tornado Management Agency (NETMA) to develop the Captor E-Scan radar for the Typhoon multi-role fighter, during a ceremony in Edinburgh, Scotland.
Signed on behalf of the UK, Germany, Spain and Italy, the contract will see the integration of the Captor E-Scan on-board the aircraft to help further improve Typhoon’s combat effectiveness.
Eurofighter CEO Alberto Gutierrez said: "The signing of this contract is a massive boost to all of us and is a pivotal moment.
"It enhances a weapons system that offers a mix of capabilities that is simply unmatched anywhere in the world."
NETMA general manager air vice-marshal Graham Farnell said: "This new capability will ensure the fighter remains a vital component in the mix."
UK Defence Equipment, Support and Technology Minister Philip Dunne said: "The development of this AESA [active electronically scanned array] radar is a significant step in delivering technology that will ensure the Royal Air Force is equipped to meet the evolving demands of operations.
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"The contract also represents another significant investment in the defence industry in Scotland, sustaining around 500 jobs at Selex ES in Edinburgh."
Eurofighter, along with its primary supplier, Euroradar, and a range of other suppliers across Europe, will develop theCaptor E-Scan, which is said to be the world’s most advanced AESA radar system.
Designed to retrofit to both Tranche 2 and Tranche 3 Typhoons, the radar is expected to add new mission capabilities, such as simultaneous radar functionalities, air surveillance and air-to-ground and weapon control to the aircraft.
The radar has a 200° field of regard, and combines the key features of the existing Captor radar architecture with the latest generation of technology to concurrently execute a full complement of air-to-air and air-to-surface missions.
The Captor E-Scan radar is equipped with a very large sized antenna and repositioner, which enables a greater number of transmitter receiver modules, hence providing greater power and reception, leading to earlier target detection and greater utility across the electronic warfare spectrum.
A twin-engine multirole fighter, with a canard-delta wing, Typhoon is designed to undertake air policing, peace support and high-intensity conflict missions worldwide.
Image: Captor E-Scan radar in nose of a Eurofighter Typhoon. Photo: courtesy of Eurofighter Jagdflugzeug GmbH.