In the RAF, Typhoon tranche 1 become "aggressors"

(To Stefano Peverati)
15/09/20

The first Typhoon of the Royal Air Force, serial number ZJ914, was recolored at the RAF Coningsby base with the long-awaited aggressor color scheme. The RAF has plans to repaint all Typhoon FGR.4 of the IX (Bomber) Squadron of RAF Lossiemouth with the new color shark gray inspired by Hawk T-1, who are already employed in the role of aggressor, also on behalf of the Royal Navy, and the US F-16Cs of the 64th Aggressor Squadron by Nellis AFB.

The possibility of having a fourth generation aircraft like the Typhoon in this role it represents a rare opportunity not only for RAF pilots, but also for their NATO colleagues, since, despite the presence of numerous private companies operating in the sector, none of them have such advanced aircraft. The leaders of the RAF, rather than sell or radiate the specimens of the 1 Tranche, have deemed it appropriate to keep them in the departments of Quick Reaction Alert, in support of the most modern specimens if used in operations outside the national territory, but primarily to give them a new life, at least until 2030, as components of the Red Air, until they are joined and gradually replaced by F-35Bs Lightning II.

All 24 single-seaters of the 1 Tranche, while their contemporaries of the two-seater version will be cannibalized and used as spare parts for the whole Typhoon Force. The 107 specimens of the subsequent tranches, on the other hand, will be submitted to the Project Centurion consisting of a two-phase upgrade that in the first (P2E) will allow these aircraft to be armed with the BVRAAM missile Meteor and the cruise one Storm Shadow, while in the second phase (P3E) precision air-to-ground missiles will also be integrated Brimstone.

This operation is a smart choice to use outdated aircraft for an air force of primary importance, but which can still give a lot. Other nations like Italy and Austria, on the other hand, are trying to sell their specimens of the 1 Tranche even if with completely different reasons (we always speak of the 24 specimens to be given to Egypt). I believe that a nation like Italy should at least consider such a possibility by deploying these aircraft on the basis of Decimomannu by establishing a department inspired by theAir Tactics Center in Casa del Tactical Weapons School of the Hellenic Air Force based in Andravida in order to further raise the quality standards of the air force crew and to host allied and friendly nations with exercises in particular in the Mediterranean area.

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