2007-11-11 - Typhoon Tranche 2 fliesEurofighter Tranche 2 Avionics now in flight test
Neue Software für Eurofighter im Flugversuch<br /> The first Eurofighter Typhoon loaded with Tranche 2 avionics took to the air at BAE Systems' Warton facility.
Instrumented Production Aircraft Six (IPA6) completed its maiden flight under the control of Mark Bowman, Eurofighter Typhoon test pilot at BAE Systems, taking off at 13.06 hrs hours and staying airborne for 54 minutes. After the flight Mark commented on the aircraft's performance: "This first flight of IPA6 represents the beginning of the next chapter in this remarkable aircraft's life. Whilst the exterior of the aircraft may be familiar, significant changes have taken place 'inside' that will take this to the Tranche 2 standard and beyond. From the pilot's point of view, the new systems worked very well and performance remains simply stunning. This particular aircraft will be worked hard over the coming years to contribute significantly to where we go next in meeting our customers' requirements and truly reflects all the hard work and dedication from across the Company in getting us to today's first flight."
IPA6 at Warton will be used for Tranche 2 flight test. It's first prominent task will be to accomplish Type Acceptance for Block 8, the first capability standard of the second Tranche Eurofighter Typhoon, in April 2008. While IPA6 (BS031) is essentially a Tranche 1 standard aircraft, it uses the full Tranche 2 mission computer suite and avionics features. IPA7 (GS029) is the first aircraft that represents the full Tranche 2 build standard. The first flight of IPA7 is expected before the end of 2007 at the Manching site of EADS, Germany.
The significant Tranche 2 features focus mainly on the new mission computers which deliver the higher processing and memory capacity required for the integration of future weapons such as Meteor, Storm Shadow and Taurus. Differences in the build standard to Tranche 1 are related to changes in production technology or obsolescence.