UK announces investment in new fighter Jet
With Farnborough Air Show kicking off this week we have had an earlier announcement from the UK Government's plan for a new fast jet. Called the Tempest, this aircraft will aim to replace the UK’s current fighter (The Eurofighter Typhoon) in 2035.
The UK's Defence Secretary, Gavin Williamson, says that the project aims to create an aircraft that can be controlled by either an onboard pilot or from the ground similar to some of the UK’s current military drones. The project is to receive £2bn which will be used for research and development, with the principal target of this project to improve the stealth capabilities of the UK’s fighter jets.
These kinds of projects can take decades to complete, and despite the Typhoon being in the earlier stages of its service life it is unlikely it will have to worry about being replaced anytime soon.
Development of the program will be made in partnership with BAE Systems, engine maker Rolls-Royce, Italy's Leonardo and missiles expert MBDA. All have a strong background with BAE responsible for manufacture of the UK’s current fleet of fast jets.
Speaking to the BBC yesterday, chief executive of BAE Systems, Charles Woodburn, told the BBC's Today programme the Typhoon still has a long future.
"We already have the Typhoon platform which forms the absolute bedrock of European air defence and that'll be in service for decades to come," he said.
"The important thing about the new concept is that it will illustrate a direction of travel and many of those technologies that will be embodied in that will first see their service through the Typhoon.
"For example, upgrades on the avionics, upgrades in the weapons systems, upgrades in the radar will be deployed through the Typhoon and will be deployed there and then."