A further series of flight trials of Typhoon fighter jet with the low-collateral MBDA Brimstone air-to-surface weapon have been completed at BAE Systems’ site in Warton, Lancashire. The trials are part of ongoing development work on the Phase 3 Enhancement (P3E) package for Typhoon aircraft, which will also deliver further sensor and mission system upgrades as part of Project CENTURION. The programme is to ensure a smooth transition of Tornado fighter jet capabilities on to Typhoon for the Royal Air Force (RAF) by the end of 2018.
The trials were conducted using the United Kingdom’s Typhoon Instrumented Production Aircraft (IPA) 6, and formed part of work to gather air data on the weapon and expand the carriage envelope. Firing trials are now scheduled for later this year to test the effectiveness of the weapon in operational scenarios.
In total around 40 trials to integrate Brimstone weapon with Typhoon fighter have seen the aircraft flown with four AMRAAM, two ASRAAM, two Paveway IV laser guided/GPS bombs and two launchers each containing three Brimstone missiles. Eight of the 40 flights have been carried out with RAF’s 41(R) Squadron.
The flight trials programme for Brimstone is running alongside ongoing Typhoon development programmes with the Meteor and Storm Shadow weapons, which form part of the aircraft’s Phase 2 Enhancement (P2E) package due to be delivered into service in 2018.