First Export Eurofighter Typhoon Flies for the First Time

3/21/2007 - Manching/Hallbergmoos – The first Eurofighter Typhoon for an export Nation has successfully concluded its first flight at EADS Military Air Systems in Manching, Germany. Austrian Singleseater AS001, the first of 18 aircraft to be delivered by the Eurofighter consortium of Alenia Aeronautica, BAE SYSTEMS, EADS CASA and EADS Germany to the Austrian Air Force, was piloted by EADS Eurofighter Testpilot Chris Worning and took off at 11.15 local time. During the flight, the aircraft was taken through a series of basic handling manoeuvres before touching down after approximately 1 hour. On landing, the pilot commented: “The aircraft handled impeccably as expected. The industrial consortium behind this next generation aircraft have already delivered unrivalled capability to the Partner Air Forces, and now Austria will begin to realise the force-multiplying benefits of this world-class weapon system that is already in operation in four nations.”

Eurofighter GmbH CEO, Aloysius Rauen, comments: “The flight of AS001 as the first Austrian Eurofighter Typhoon and the first export Eurofighter Typhoon, is a major milestone in the programme. This achievement is the result of a successful cooperation of all Partner companies and suppliers, and demonstrates the ability of this international partnership to deliver to contract specification in Export.”

AS001 is a Block 5 standard aircraft, representing the last build standard of Tranche 1. Under the terms of the contract, Austria will receive in total 18 aircraft. Deliveries are scheduled to be completed in 2009.

As Austria is supported in the acceptance process by the German Ministry of Defence, the Austrian aircraft are temporarily adorned with German national markings and registration numbers over the original Austrian Air Force designation (98+40 instead of 7L+WA).

The second aircraft for Austria, AS002, was rolled out only a few days earlier and is now undergoing final checks before engine runs and the addition of Air Force colour scheme to the aircraft. First flight is scheduled for April 2007.

AS003 through to AS006 are in Final assembly, while the major components for AS007 through to AS018 are in production. The training simulator has been installed at Zeltweg, the Main Operating Base (MOB) of the Austrian Air Force Eurofighter Typhoons, and first flights in the simulator have been achieved. This training device is currently undergoing an upgrade to the software, allowing for a greater capability in aircrew training.

According to the US Think Tank “Forecast International” Eurofighter Typhoon is market leader with 638 aircraft on order. Based on a governmental collaboration agreement between the United Kingdom and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the intention is to procure 72 aircraft for the Royal Saudi Air Force.

To date 116 series production aircraft have been delivered to the four partner nations Germany, Italy, Spain and The United Kingdom. The Eurofighter Typhoon fleet of these nations have logged more than 16,300 flying hours.

Source: Eurofighter Press Release

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