An Italian Air Force TF-2000A was involved in the live firing campaign at the UK‘s Hebrides range.
In the last weeks, the Italian Air Force has successfully completed the first phase of the Operational Testing and Evaluation (OT&E) campaign of the MDBA Meteor Beyond Visual Range Air to Air Missile (BVRAAM) and the AMRAAM (Advanced Medium Range Air to Air Missile) at the Hebrides Range range in the UK.
According to the service, the activities were carried out from RAF Lossiemouth, as part of the planned operational verification activities of the F-2000A (as the single seat Eurofighter is designated in Italy) weapon system with the aim of evaluating different types of armament, sensors and capabilities development software, needed to undertake the wide variety of mission that the aircraft is called upon to carry out.
This was the first launch campaign with the new BVRAAM missile, whose integration was made possible by the P2E(b) – Phase 2 Enhancement bravo – upgrade, and its purpose was to assess the behaviour of the weapon in conditions representative of possible operational scenarios, against real targets remotely controlled from the ground.
The TOET conducted tests both in flight and on the ground, using for the first time a telemetric version of the missile called Telemetric Operational Missile (TOM) Meteor, which allowed the recording of all flight parameters, essential for verifying the real characteristics of the BVRAAM. In addition, as a secondary objective, the AMRAAM missile, integrated on both the Eurofighter and F-35 fleets, was launched to evaluate the armament in conditions of increasing difficulty.
This first test phase was coordinated by the 4th Department of the Air Force General Staff and conducted with the support of the Typhoon Operational Evaluation Team (TOET), a joint team made of pilots and engineers from the Reparto Sperimentale Volo (Flight Test Wing), Weapons Instructors from the Typhoon operations squadrons and Mission Data Specialists from ReSTOGE (Reparto Supporto Operativo Guerra Elettronica – Electronic Warfare Technical Support Department), assisted by support personnel from all the F-2000A units.
A second testing phase is planned for the end of 2024.
Noteworthy, the development of advanced tactics for the use of the Meteor BVRAAM was the main goal of “Typhoon Flag” exercise last month.