Eurofighter will next deliver Typhoon fighters to its seventh customer, Oman, as the European consortium marks its 20th anniversary.
On the 20th anniversary of Europe’s biggest fighter programme, over 400 Typhoons have been delivered to six international customers.
In December 2012, Oman placed the order for 12 Eurofighter Typhoons, becoming the second operator in the Middle East, joining the air forces of the United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, Spain, Austria and Saudi Arabia. Delivery is expected by 2017.
The Chief Executive Officer of Eurofighter, Alberto Gutierrez, said on the occasion, “The Eurofighter Typhoon that (test pilot) Peter Weger first flew 20 years ago is very different to the one that flies today. From the outset, the aircraft was built with capability enhancement in mind and the process of enhancement is what delivers a long-term return on investment. The Eurofighter is now the backbone of a number of air forces and will be in service for decades to come. It is a significant European asset and one which showcases to the world the very best in technology and innovation.”
NETMA’s General Manager, Graham Farnell said: “The dream of our predecessors, some 30 years ago, of a world-class European Fighter Aircraft, became a reality on 27th March 1994. “The aircraft they built is now fully operational in the air forces of Germany, Spain, Italy, the United Kingdom and with our partners in Austria and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Soon it will also be delivered to Oman. It is defending skies and providing a 24/7 watch over Europe, the Middle East – and around the Antartic region. The challenges we face today are no less demanding than those which our predecessors had when they set out to develop this aircraft. We now need to show the same resolve, determination and vision that they had”.
In total, more than 225,000 flying hours have been accumulated with unprecedented levels of reliability. The aircraft has also seen active service in Libya, has been used on Baltic patrol exercises and has recently been showcased at one of the world’s leading air-to-air combat training events, Red Flag, at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada.