Naval Eurofighter Typhoon projects

TinWing

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Jackonicko said:
This may well be bollocks and sloppy journalism, though I understand that the Typhoon (N) “is not dead” and that the studies are still being looked at and kept under review.

The option of a ‘marinised’ Typhoon has been studied several times, first as the only STOBAR aircraft type to be considered by the original FCBA/JCA studies.

Early pre-feasibility studies of a Eurofighter Typhoon (N) (using the possible service name - Sea Typhoon) were undertaken in early 1996 by British Aerospace's Military Aircraft and Aerostructures. (BAE Systems initially suggested that costly airframe strengthening and a new undercarriage for Typhoon (N), as traditionally required for the ‘navalisation’ of a land based aircraft, could be avoided by using sophisticated computer controlled precise landing systems and other aids to reduce arrested landing stresses to within existing Typhoon limits. These ideas were not accepted by the MOD, however, and a fully navalised STOBAR Typhoon was drawn up).

A further 27 month contract was let in 1997 to study both catapult-launched (CTOL) and STOBAR variants in more detail.

Both variants would have required a large conventional aircraft carrier with an angled flight deck and arrester wires.

Both featured a strengthened undercarriage and an arrestor hook, and consideration was given to providing a larger thicker wing with power folding and more powerful vectored thrust EJ200 engines.


In May 2001 Sir Robert Walmsley, Head of the Defence Procurement Agency, dismissed the possibility of a navalised Eurofighter pointing out that Typhoon was "not currently designed so that it could use a carrier. We could change the design but we would be faced with a huge piece of work. The materials would probably have to be changed in order to avoid corrosion; the weight of the undercarriage would have to be doubled to support carrier landing which would eat into the payload margin; and the wing roots would have to be strengthened in order to take the full inertia forces on landing. That sounds to me like a very substantial redesign. It is always possible, but it would cost a huge amount of money and it would certainly add very considerably to the cost of the aircraft.”

There had also been fears that the flight deck clearance of external weapons would be dangerously low for the robust nature of carrier launch and landing events, and that the canards would dangerously restrict the pilots view during high angle of attack carrier landings. These fears were dismissed after studies.

Walmsley’s conclusions were not shared by those who’d undertaken the studies, and the possibility of a navalised Typhoon re-emerged in late 2005, as a "Plan B" in the event of a JSF cancellation.

BAE engineers had concluded that navalising Typhoon appeared to be "practical and relatively inexpensive", and that navalising later RAF tranches "might be of interest". The view over the nose was not necessarily inadequate and there were a number of options for reducing sink rate. Of these only the increased angle of attack option would would require the addition of a pilot periscope or a higher seat position and higher canopy roofline.

The studies indicated a 340 kg weight increase for the STOBAR version, and 460 kg for the CTOL catapult launched variant.

STOBAR was considered preferable to CTOL, flight control system changes would be necessary to guarantee "precision landings" but there would be little change to structural layout, and there would certainly be no need for a major rework for the aircraft to survive arrested landings.

The Typhoon’s advanced flight-control system could be programmed to reduce the stresses of landing, particularly if integrated with a carrier-landing datalink. This would have a number of advantages. For instance, sudden pitching of the carrier deck would be recognised by the system, which would feed in last-second control corrections, ensuring that the aircraft landed within set limits. This would permit the airframe to be strengthened only as required for operations within those parameters.

Thrust vectoring, already being planned for the Typhoon, coupled with a high-lift wing design, could provide near-optimal short-takeoff-and-landing capabilities for a ‘Sea Typhoon.’ The use of a ski ramp would only enhance STOL performance.

As an alternative to JSF, it was claimed that Typhoon (N) would offer higher speed, range and payload, although it would be less stealthy. A Typhoon (N) would also have the advantage of considerable commonality with the 232 Eurofighter Typhoon's already planned for the RAF – if, indeed, the third Tranche was not completed in a Typhoon (N) configuration.

The UK was not the only potential customer for a navalised Typhoon, Eurofighter GmbH briefed the Italian Navy during 2000 about a low-cost, reduced weight, arrestor landing/angled deck variant of the while the company offered ‘another customer’ (probably India) a “more radically modified naval version of the aircraft”, presumably the STOBAR variant studied for the UK.

http://www.pprune.org/military-aircrew/285968-aircraft-carriers-may-use-typhoon.html#post3445721

The last drawing showing a Eurofighter with a bridle type catapult, which certainly circumvents more than a few forward fusealage structural issues associate with the tow-bar, although it does look a bit anachronistic?

I can only assume that the original source for the drawings was BAE Systems?
 

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GTX

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Interesting, thanks - although I can't imagine the Bridle form of catapult finding favour these days.

Regards,

Greg
 

Rickshaw

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GTX said:
Interesting, thanks - although I can't imagine the Bridle form of catapult finding favour these days.

Regards,

Greg

Ya do what ya gotta do, to get the job done. Bridles are (relatively) expensive and a limiter on operational tempo (you run out of bridles, your operations stop). They take up storage space as well. An an expendable item, they tend to chew up the flying budget fairly quickly. HMAS Melbourne often had to ration them in the 1970s - but that had more to do with the parsinamony of Treasury rather than anything else. However, if they are the way in which you can make your planes work, then I see no reason to not use them. They aren't though, the most optimum way in which to do the job.
 

swerve

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rickshaw said:
Ya do what ya gotta do, to get the job done. Bridles are (relatively) expensive and a limiter on operational tempo (you run out of bridles, your operations stop). They take up storage space as well. An an expendable item, they tend to chew up the flying budget fairly quickly.
Definitely one use only? Bridle catchers were only to stop them flying around doing damage, not to recover them for re-use? I thought I'd read of bridles being re-used.
 

Jemiba

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From Paul Beaver "The British Aircraft Carrier", Patrick Stevens Ltd., 1981

;)
 

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GTX

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Another disadvantage of the Bridle these days would be limited options for crossdeck operations with allies - at least the French and USA can operate from each other to a degree. I'm sure the RN would want to be able to the same.

Regards,

Greg
 

Jemiba

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AFAIK, crossdeck operations were still possible, even when the FAA was using
bridles and the USN not. The british aircraft just had to carry with them one or two
bridles, or they were bought to the US carries before .
 

Rickshaw

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swerve said:
rickshaw said:
Ya do what ya gotta do, to get the job done. Bridles are (relatively) expensive and a limiter on operational tempo (you run out of bridles, your operations stop). They take up storage space as well. An an expendable item, they tend to chew up the flying budget fairly quickly.
Definitely one use only? Bridle catchers were only to stop them flying around doing damage, not to recover them for re-use? I thought I'd read of bridles being re-used.

Never heard of a bridle catcher before. Learn something new every day. I suspect they were a late invention and never fitted or retro-fitted to the Majestic Class light fleet carriers. Melbourne never had one. I also suspect that while it might catch the "strops" as they were known as in the RAN, they still had a tendancy to wear out/break after a limited number of uses.
 

TinWing

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rickshaw said:
swerve said:
rickshaw said:
Ya do what ya gotta do, to get the job done. Bridles are (relatively) expensive and a limiter on operational tempo (you run out of bridles, your operations stop). They take up storage space as well. An an expendable item, they tend to chew up the flying budget fairly quickly.
Definitely one use only? Bridle catchers were only to stop them flying around doing damage, not to recover them for re-use? I thought I'd read of bridles being re-used.

Never heard of a bridle catcher before. Learn something new every day. I suspect they were a late invention and never fitted or retro-fitted to the Majestic Class light fleet carriers. Melbourne never had one. I also suspect that while it might catch the "strops" as they were known as in the RAN, they still had a tendancy to wear out/break after a limited number of uses.

www.navy.gov.au said:
In December 1970 her three squadrons were disembarked and she commenced another major refit at Garden Island during which her flight deck was strengthened and her catapult rebuilt with a bridle catcher extension.

http://www.navy.gov.au/HMAS_Melbourne_(II)
 

Jemiba

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I wouldn't put much faith in this artist's impression ! There's too much
art in it, I think. The nose looks like stolen from the F-4 Phantom and just
reduced to a single seat cockpit and, I may be wrong, but the booms with
the fins seem not to be parallel.
"Hey buddy, can you make a drawing of an aircraft ? I'll tell you, what it
should look like and here you are some old photos as pattern ..." :D
 

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I believe Melbourn had a bridal catcher fitted.

Certainly CdeG and a number of the USN CV's all are capable of using the old bridal system, though they've all lost the bridal catcher.

And yes I too have heard of the Typhoon supercruising with a six AAMs and a droptank. Indeed supercruising after take off from Singapore in hot and humid conditions.

After all consider what was it....EE's Lighting P.8? Supercruising on twin engines of 13,000lb thrust each at upto mach2 above 36,000ft or so, so I seem to reccal.
 

swerve

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zen said:
I believe Melbourn had a bridal catcher fitted.

Certainly CdeG and a number of the USN CV's all are capable of using the old bridal system, though they've all lost the bridal catcher.
I think you mean bridle. "Bridal" means pertaining to a bride . . . . :(
 

zen

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As a dyslexic occaisionaly I shall misspell the odd word, it is not the end of the world and the meaning was clear enough.
 

overscan (PaulMM)

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Oddly enough as a non-expert in naval matters I wondered what a bridal catcher might be. Seems an odd thing to fit to a carrier ;)
 

zen

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To be completely OT....

Well you know women are unlucky on a ship....... ;)
 

Triton

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Artist's impression of Eurofighter Typhoon (N), possible service name "Sea Typhoon", in the colors of 899 Naval Air Squadron (NAS).

index.php


From Navy Matters:

The only STOBAR [Short Take Off But Arrested Recovery] aircraft type to be considered by the FCBA/JCA studies was a marinised Eurofighter Typhoon EF2000. Initial pre-feasibility studies were undertaken in early 1996 by British Aerospace's (now BAE Systems) Military Aircraft and Aerostructures Department to consider a Eurofighter Typhoon (N) (possible service name - Sea Typhoon). These looked promising and in 1997 a further 27 month contract was let to study in more detail both catapult-launched (CTOL) and STOBAR variants, these would have in common a strengthened undercarriage and an arrestor hook, and possibly a larger thicker wing with power folding and more powerful vectored thrust EJ200 engines. Both variants would have required a large conventional carrier design equipped with an angled flight deck and arrested wires for landing.

The UK was not the only potential customer for a navalised Typhoon, Eurofighter GmbH (the consortium which builds and sells Typhoon) is reported to have briefed the Italian Navy during 2000 about a low-cost, reduced weight, arrestor landing/angled deck variant of the Typhoon that could operate from the Italian Navy’s new 25,000 tonnes carrier, Conte di Cavour, which is due to enter service in 2006/7. The company has also offered another customer (probably India) a “more radically modified naval version of the aircraft”, presumably the STOBAR variant studied for the UK.

BAE Systems continued with varying amounts of enthusiasm (apparently depending on its likely JSF workshare at the time!) to push Typhoon (N) as an alternative to JSF, stressing the Typhoon's higher speed, range and payload, although admitting it would be less stealthy. A Typhoon (N) would also have the advantage of considerable commonality with the 232 Eurofighter Typhoon's already planned for the RAF.

BAE Systems suggested that costly airframe strengthening and a new undercarriage for Typhoon (N), as traditionally required for aircraft "navalisation" of a land based aircraft, could be avoided by using sophisticated computer controlled precise landing systems and other aids to reduce arrested landing stresses to within existing Typhoon limits - which are far below those currently normal for hard carrier operations. Apparently even giant fans blowing air over the aft flight deck and in to the final landing approach were considered! But these BAE's idea's do not seem to have been accepted by the MOD, indeed they would appear to be a rather risky cost reduction measure which have become a source of major problems in the future, e.g. preventing flight operations in heavy seas or leading to costly repairs of prematurely fatigued aircraft.

During 1999-2000 a fully navalised STOBAR Typhoon seemed to be the only real competitor to JSF for the JCA order, but in January 2001 (just prior to the UK signing a MoU for the JSF SDD phase - see below) reports appeared in the UK press that it had been eliminated on cost and safety grounds, e.g. the flight deck clearance of external weapons was considered dangerously low for the robust nature of carrier launch and landing events, and the canards dangerously restricted the pilots view during high angle of attack carrier landings.

In May 2001 Sir Robert Walmsley, Head of the Defence Procurement Agency, when asked about the possibility of a navalised Eurofighter if JSF was cancelled said: "It is not currently designed so that it could use a carrier. We could change the design but we would be faced with a huge piece of work. The materials would probably have to be changed in order to avoid corrosion; the weight of the undercarriage would have to be doubled to support carrier landing which would eat into the payload margin; and the wing roots would have to be strengthened in order to take the full inertia forces on landing. That sounds to me like a very substantial redesign. It is always possible, but it would cost a huge amount of money and it would certainly add very considerably to the cost of the aircraft".

The possibility of a navalised Typhoon re-emerged in late 2005, as "Plan B" when the UK hit severe problems in relation to technology transfer for the F-35 JSF. Published leaks indicated that BAE engineers had concluded (presumably in the earlier studies) that navalising Typhoon appeared to be "practical and relatively inexpensive", and that navalising later RAF tranches "might be of interest". STOBAR was considered preferable to CTOL, flight control system changes would be necessary to guarantee "precision landings" but there would be little change to structural layout, and there would certainly be no need for a major rework for the aircraft to survive arrested landings. The view over the nose was not necessarily inadequate. There were a number of options for reducing sink rate, only the increased angle of attack option would would require the addition of a pilot periscope or a higher seat position and higher canopy roofline. The studies indicated a 340 kg weight increase for the STOBAR version, and 460 kg for the CTOL catapult launched variant.

Source:
http://navy-matters.beedall.com/jca1-1.htm
 

Trident

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http://www.flightglobal.com/articles/2011/02/09/352925/aero-india-eurofighter-reveals-offer-to-produce-navalised.html

http://livefist.blogspot.com/2011/02/aero-india-naval-eurofighter-typhoon.html

While the chances of this happening seem quite remote, some of the enhancements (CFTs, TVC) are familiar and it shows that these ideas are not dead, perhaps to be available in future as part of Eurofighter's answer to the International Roadmap upgrade for the SH by Boeing. Another surprise is the use of the RBS-15 ASM, I was under the impression that Eurofighter's preferred solution (such as it is, given the general lack of commitment to multi-role enhancements) for this mission was NSM.
 

Trident

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More on the STOBAR Typhoon variant on offer to India:

http://livefist.blogspot.com/2011/02/eurofighters-pitch-to-indian-navy.html

Note the modified nose landing gear (trailing link configuration) which, if you look closely, is also seen on the model photos. Presumably an attempt to deal with higher compression loads from ski jump take-offs.
 

Triton

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Model of Naval Eurofighter Typhoon at Aero India 2011.

Source:
http://livefist.blogspot.com/2011/02/aero-india-naval-eurofighter-typhoon.html
 

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fightingirish

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Product card of Naval Eurofighter Typhoon at Aero India 2011.
The first picture shows the old CFT's.
Source:
http://livefist.blogspot.com/2011/02/more-on-eurofighters-naval-typhoon.html
 

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Mike Pryce

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Article on land-based equivalent Typhoon for Middle East (although if democracy prevails there...!):

http://www.flightglobal.com/articles/2011/02/24/353561/pictures-eurofighter-reveals-typhoon-development-options-for-middle.html

Picture attached.
 

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fightingirish

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I wonder, if there are two types of CFT's for a future Eurofighter. ???
A slimmer pair for a carrier-based version and a chubbier pair for a land-based version.
 

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