The UK Royal Air Force mounted the biggest flypast seen in Europe for many years over RAF Fairford, Gloucestershire, last Friday. On the ground, the Queen presented new colors to the RAF and the RAF Regiment with due ceremony, to mark the service’s 90th anniversary. Fortunately, the popular song title came true, and the rain did not fall on her parade.
The Swedish Security Services have detained a man for reportedly trying to blackmail Saab. The 48-year-old engineer was arrested in Gothenburg last Thursday, but AIN understands that he does not work for the company. However, he has “illegally gained access to documents regarding the operations of Saab Microwave Systems,” the company said. The man, who has no criminal record, denies the allegation.
Appearing for one day only, the F-22 Raptor thrilled the Farnborough crowd yesterday with a majestic display of power and agility. Now the Raptor heads home to join the rest of its unit at Langley, Virginia, as the F-22 fleet gathers experience and capability.
Deliveries of the Eurocopter UH-72A (EC 145) Lakota to the U.S. Army are gathering pace since the first helicopter entered into service in November 2006. Last month the first operational unit received its first aircraft, and the second unit began accepting aircraft a few days ago.
Elbit Systems has been awarded a contract valued at some $20 million to supply Hermes 450 UAV systems to an unnamed European country. The order specifies both air vehicles and complementary ground systems, for delivery next year.\
IAI’s Conformal Airborne Early Warning aircraft, top right, arrives at Farnborough for its first public appearance. Underneath all the bulges and fairings lurks a Gulfstream G550 bizjet airframe, which has been heavily modified to carry the conformal arrays for the Elta EL/M-2085 airborne early warning radar.
Parts distributor Avio-Diepen is here in Hall 3 Stand C6 and is sponsoring the Sally B, the UK’s last remaining airworthy B-17 Flying Fortress. The Sally B flies regularly at air shows, memorial flypasts and commemorative events as a memorial to the 79,000 Allied airmen who gave their lives during the Second World War.
CMC Electronics and Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems signed a 12-year agreement for the supply of more than 35,000 hybrid microcircuits for active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar systems in the F-18E/F and F-15E. The radar provides targeting and tracking capabilities in the airplanes, flown by the U.S. Navy, Air Force and Air National Guard. Boeing most recently selected the AESA technology for the Air Force’s F-15E Strike Eagle.
Intended to arm the ‘Euro-canards’ (Gripen, Rafale and Typhoon) and possibly integrate into the RAF’s JSFs, the MBDA Meteor ramjet-powered missile is taking giant strides towards service entry. Recent successful guided firings have paved the way for trials of production-representative missiles, keeping the program on track for an in-service date of 2013.