The NATO Eurofighter and Twister Administration Company (NETMA) has signed a landmark contract for the acquisition of 20 latest-generation Eurofighter Hurricane jets. Often called the Halcón programme, the order will cowl the supply of a fleet of E-Scan (Electronically Scanned) radar-equipped fighter plane consisting of 16 single-seaters and 4 twin-seaters to interchange the F-18 fleet operated by the Spanish Air Power on the Canary Islands. This contract will see the Spanish Eurofighter fleet develop to 90 plane. With the primary supply due in 2026, these new plane will improve and place the Spanish Air Power fighter fleet amongst its NATO allies with essentially the most trendy fighter jet developed in Europe, in addition to securing industrial exercise by means of to 2030. In service with Spain since 2003, the nation’s air power operates the Eurofighter from the air bases of Morón (eleventh Wing) and Albacete (14th Wing), securing Spain’s territory and taking part in a key function on the coronary heart of NATO in several Air Policing missions within the Baltics and extra lately the Black Sea. With the arrival of those new plane, Spain may also equip the third base with Eurofighter jets, particularly Gando on the Canary Islands, which is house to the forty sixth Wing.
“This extra order reinforces Spain’s dedication not solely in the direction of the Eurofighter but additionally to its improvement and industrial setting. I wish to thank the client for its agency place regarding European defence at a time when it’s wanted most,” stated Mike Schoellhorn, CEO of Airbus Defence and Area. The acquisition, valued at € 2.043 billion, was authorised by Spain’s Council of Ministers on 14 December 2021 and contains the plane, engines, a simulator and the mandatory assist providers.
The Spanish Eurofighter Hurricane is assembled, examined and delivered on the Airbus Getafe website (Spain) and its industrial footprint interprets into greater than 20,000 direct and oblique jobs in Spain alone. The principle nationwide defence and know-how firms are concerned within the manufacturing course of. Airbus has additionally been working at Getafe in coordination with the Armament and Experimental Logistics Centre (CLAEX) of the Spanish Air Power to make varied modifications such because the implementation of the brand new CM02+ software program bundle for the Tranche 1 Eurofighters. A significant tactical enchancment supplied by this software program is the brand new capability for automated focusing on of air-to-surface weapons following the mixing of the Litening-III focusing on pod. Additional air-to-air and air-to-surface capabilities have additionally been launched, together with enhancements to the communications techniques.
The Eurofighter Hurricane is a European multinational twin-engine, canard delta wing, multirole fighter. The Hurricane is a extremely agile plane, designed to be an efficient dogfighter in fight. Later manufacturing plane have been more and more higher outfitted to undertake air-to-surface strike missions and to be appropriate with an growing variety of completely different armaments and tools, together with Storm Shadow, Brimstone and Marte ER missiles. The Hurricane was designed initially as an air superiority fighter and is manufactured by a consortium of Airbus, BAE Programs and Leonardo that conducts the vast majority of the undertaking by means of a joint holding firm, Eurofighter Jagdflugzeug GmbH. The NATO Eurofighter Hurricane and Twister Administration Company, representing the UK, Germany, Italy and Spain, manages the undertaking and is the prime buyer. Eurofighter Hurricane is Europe’s largest defence programme, involving the 4 core nations of the UK, Spain, Germany and Italy. Along with its technological capabilities, it secures greater than 100,000 jobs in Europe. Up to now, the Eurofighter programme has logged 681 plane orders to 9 nations across the globe.