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December 8, 2014

Eurofighter Typhoon completes first live firings of Meteor missile

BAE Systems has completed the first in a series of live firings of the Meteor beyond visual range air-to-air missile from Eurofighter Typhoon aircraft at the UK Ministry of Defence's (MoD) Hebrides firing range in the UK.

Typhoon

BAE Systems has completed the first in a series of live firings of the Meteor beyond visual range air-to-air missile from Eurofighter Typhoon aircraft at the UK Ministry of Defence’s (MoD) Hebrides firing range in the UK.

Supported by MBDA, Selex, Qinetiq and the MoD, the trials demonstrate the effective operation of the Meteor missile with Typhoon, while expanding the jettison envelope by conducting firings at different altitudes and speeds.

The trials also evaluate the interface of Meteor with the Typhoon weapon system for both pre-launch priming and post-launch datalink functions between the missile and the radar.

BAE Systems Typhoon test pilot Nat Makepeace said: "The aircraft and the weapon performed exactly as expected.

"It’s very easy and intuitive to operate, and the trials demonstrated that we can function in an expanded envelope safely and accurately.

"This is a significant step forward for the full integration of the Meteor missile onto the Typhoon aircraft."

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The integration of the Meteor into Typhoon is being carried out as part of a contract signed between Eurofighter and Nato Eurofighter and the Tornado Management Agency in June 2013.

"The aircraft and the weapon performed exactly as expected. It’s very easy and intuitive to operate, and the trials demonstrated that BAE Systems can function in an expanded envelope safely and accurately."

The missile would be installed on Typhoon fighters from Germany, Italy, Spain, and the UK.

Additional firing trials are scheduled to be carried out in future to fully expand the launch envelope and weapon system integration that will be completed in 2017.

Meteor is manufactured by MBDA. It is an active radar guided missile designed to provide a multi-shot capability against long-range manoeuvring targets, such as fast jets, small unmanned aerial vehicles and cruise missiles in a heavy electronic countermeasures environment.

The missile is capable of autonomously engaging air targets during day and night, and in all-weather conditions. It is expected to complement the aircraft’s existing missile systems, providing pilots with greater choice of weapons during combat.


Image: A Typhoon aircraft completed the first in a series of live firings of Meteor missile at the Hebrides firing range in the UK. Photo: courtesy of BAE Systems.

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