BAE Systems has started electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) testing of the UK Royal Air Force’s (RAF) first Tranche 3A Typhoon multirole combat aircraft.
Scheduled to last for about eight weeks, the EMC testing aims to ensure safe and correct operation of the aircraft’s systems, such as armament, fuel and flight controls, on exposure to radio frequency transmissions, including ground radars or TV and radio transmission masts during flight.
The testing is conducted using a direct current injection technique, which includes injection of simulated threat signals directly into specially designed points on the aircraft’s nose, tail and wing tips.
The aircraft had completed final assembly with initial testing at the company’s facility in Warton, Lancashire, UK, in late 2012.
Avionics testing and engine ground runs of the aircraft are scheduled to be carried out in the next few months.
A total of 112 aircraft ordered by four Eurofighter partner nations, including Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK, as part of the €9bn Tranche 3A contract awarded in June 2009.
Around 40 Typhoon aircraft will be delivered to RAF, 31 to Germany, 21 for Italy and 20 to Spain.
Manufactured by a consortium of EADS, Alenia Aeronautica and BAE, Typhoon is a twin-engine, canard-delta wing, multirole fighter designed for deployment during air operations, including air policing, peace support and high-intensity conflict missions worldwide.
Typhoon covers serial production of 559 aircraft in three tranches for the air forces of Austria, Italy, Germany, Saudi Arabia, Spain and the UK. Deliveries of Tranche 3A Typhoons to RAF are expected to commence in late 2013.
Image: UK Royal Air Force’s first Tranche 3A Typhoon aircraft undergoing electromagnetic compatibility testing. Photo courtesy of BAE Systems.