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Where are the UK's response jets scrambled from?

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posted on Aug, 13 2006 @ 05:15 AM
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Originally posted by fritz

Originally posted by mojoberg
no tornado f4 would ever be scrambled


there is no such plane. Think you are getting confused with the gr4, the ground attack variant and the f3 the air defense variant. The f4 was the phantom air defense fighter


So, you think I don't know what I'm talking about, eh? I served 5 years with a Tornado Wing and I guess that I have seen it all.

As to the F4 version, ah well - I guess that books and films only show so much, don't they?

If I'd have wanted to say Phantom F4 or F4 Phantom, I'd have done so but I didn't, did I?


just admit you made a mistake or show some proof of the existence of the Tornado f4 why would it be kept secret?

BTW RAF Lossiemouth doesnt station Tornado ADV aircraft it has the Tornado GR4 squadrons based there.

Dont worry though we all make mistakes.

[edit on 13-8-2006 by mojoberg]

[edit on 13-8-2006 by mojoberg]




posted on Aug, 13 2006 @ 06:48 AM
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If I may be some sort of impartial adjudicator here (tell me to bog off, if you like)

In UK service you had the Phantom FG.1, FGR.2 and F-4J(UK) (no RAF designation applied).

The Tornado on the other hand exists as the GR.1, F.2, F.3, EF.3 and GR.4 (leaving out the 'A' sub variants).

There never was a Phantom F.4 or a Tornado F.4.

Simple plain fact.

It is also true that Lossiemouth is GR.4 bomber base, the RAF fighter station up there is Leuchars.

[edit on 13-8-2006 by waynos]



posted on Aug, 16 2006 @ 11:54 AM
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Originally posted by waynos
If I may be some sort of impartial adjudicator here (tell me to bog off, if you like)

In UK service you had the Phantom FG.1, FGR.2 and F-4J(UK) (no RAF designation applied).

The Tornado on the other hand exists as the GR.1, F.2, F.3, EF.3 and GR.4 (leaving out the 'A' sub variants).

There never was a Phantom F.4 or a Tornado F.4.

Simple plain fact.

It is also true that Lossiemouth is GR.4 bomber base, the RAF fighter station up there is Leuchars.

[edit on 13-8-2006 by waynos]


Actually Waynos old chum again you are quite wrong.

American aircraft have always been classified by their type since the early days of WWI, but really came in to their own class or type during WWII.

There were 3 types of aircraft in service with the US Army, Navy and Air Force with the following designations:

B = Bomber - B17 Flying Fortress;
F = Fighter - F4U-1A Corsair;
P = Pursuit - P51D Mustang.

Today, we have 4 designations:

A = Attack - )
F = Fighter - ) used together as ] - F/A 18E Super Hornet
B = Bomber - B1B Lancer
Y = Naval designation - Y/F 18E Super Hornet

In the 70s, you had the F4 Phantom II, F14A Tomcat, F15 Eagle, F5E Tiger etc.

The UK has also classified it's aircraft as follows:

ADV = Air Defence Version (Variants); (F Designation)
ECR = Electronic Countermeasures/Recce = the same as US 'Wild Weasel' missions
(EW Designation)
GR = Ground Attack/Reconnaissance (GR Designation - currently GR9)
IDS = Interdiction/Strike (F Designation)

The 'F' Designation means Fighter and nothing else, nothing special, nothing secret.

Hope this clears things up.

The RF Designation has been dropped and is no longer in use.


[edit on 16-8-2006 by fritz]



posted on Aug, 16 2006 @ 02:22 PM
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i thought the ECR was the German variant not the Britsh one. Rather than having dedicated electronic counter measure aircraft i thought each individual RAF Tornado IDS aircraft has its own electronic counter pod. I have not found any information about the RAF ecr Tornado or the F4 Tornado aircraft on the internet at all. If anyone has any links i would be grateful or perhaps some photographs



posted on Aug, 16 2006 @ 11:01 PM
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Originally posted by fritz

Originally posted by mojoberg
no tornado f4 would ever be scrambled


there is no such plane. Think you are getting confused with the gr4, the ground attack variant and the f3 the air defense variant. The f4 was the phantom air defense fighter


So, you think I don't know what I'm talking about, eh? I served 5 years with a Tornado Wing and I guess that I have seen it all.

As to the F4 version, ah well - I guess that books and films only show so much, don't they?

If I'd have wanted to say Phantom F4 or F4 Phantom, I'd have done so but I didn't, did I?


Tornado F4? Not sure if I've heard of that one. F3 and GR4 yep, F4 must be toooooo secret and deadly for our public ears matey.


Given UK's chronic lack of area air-defence SAMs, manned fighters are the only intercept option. F-3s are the most likely candidate although other fighters could be diverted from routine training flights - not sure about UK but in France all fighter aircraft including ground-attackers fly with live cannon ammo just in case they get called upon for an anti-terrorism intercept.



posted on Aug, 17 2006 @ 03:00 AM
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Originally posted by mojoberg
i thought the ECR was the German variant not the Britsh one. Rather than having dedicated electronic counter measure aircraft i thought each individual RAF Tornado IDS aircraft has its own electronic counter pod. I have not found any information about the RAF ecr Tornado or the F4 Tornado aircraft on the internet at all. If anyone has any links i would be grateful or perhaps some photographs


Okay, I hope this works - 1st time I've tried this, so not too sure.

The link you asked for is:

www.fighter-planes.com...



posted on Aug, 17 2006 @ 03:46 AM
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I assume UK has some jets waiting at the ends of some runways armed with interception load...
Even Finnish AF has some F-18Cs sitting at the runway, incase airspacecontrol needs an id or interception. They can scramble in 3-5 minutes and in raised awareness in 1 minute from alert



posted on Aug, 17 2006 @ 04:16 PM
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Ok lets clear a few things up-

Firstly the interceptor varient of the Tornado was the F2, which was basically a GR1 with AD radar and different weapons fit. There was only a small production run before they swtiched to the F3 version which has more powerful engines, minor airframe changes and improved avionics (including automatic wing-sweep).
There is no F4. The mark 4 is an upgraded GR1 and is therefore the GR4, if there was a new version (which there isn't) it would be the F5 not F4.

Secondly the EF3 version referred to is not a true designation, but refers to several F3s modified to carry 2 ALARM anti radiation missiles for Op Telic.

Thirdly the Phantom in UK service were designated as follows-
FG1 (F4K- naval version, transfered to RAF for Air Defence once the navy lost its carriers)
FGR2 (F4M- RAF version, initially used for CAS and strike missions, then Air Defence as the Jaguar entered service)
F3 (F4J[UK]- former USN aircraft purchased to fill the void left when a number of RAF FGR2's transferred to the Falklands following the conflict)

And finally, in response to the original question. There are 3 air defence bases left in the UK- Conningsby, Leeming and Leuchars. In the cold war all 3 had aircraft held at QRA (Quick Reaction Alert), at present only Leuchars and Conningsby have aircraft on alert and they would be airborne within 10 minutes (most likely much quicker). I've watched a pair of Tornado's depart on a real scrable, a really impressive sight.
Interstingly the Conningsby Tornados are not actually based there, they are drawn from the Leeming Wing and only the alert aircraft are kept at Conningsby. This is because the base is now the home of Typhoon rather than Tornado.

After 9/11 there were plans to deploy the QRA aircraft to RAF St Mawgan or RNAS Yeovilton, both in the West of England. This would make them better placed to intercept hijacked Trans-Atlantic flights, however the project was quietly dropped with no reason given.



posted on Aug, 17 2006 @ 04:34 PM
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I was driving past Biggin Hill today (towards Westerham) and noticed a number of guys with cameras trying to clamber up the outer fence. They looked like young (ish) plane spotters and seemed really excited. At this point I caught sight of a pair of grey coloured military jets which I swear looked liked Typhoons parked on the pan. Is there an Air Show coming up soon or could their presence be anything to do with the current alert?



posted on Aug, 17 2006 @ 07:02 PM
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If they were Typhoons then it was nothing to do with the current alert and they are not fully operational yet. The first frontline squadron (no. 3) is still working-up.

There are lots of airshows on at the moment so thats the best bet, I had the Reds go over my house in Norwich the other day before they displayed at Cromer.



posted on Aug, 17 2006 @ 07:16 PM
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Originally posted by mojoberg
i thought the ECR was the German variant not the Britsh one. Rather than having dedicated electronic counter measure aircraft i thought each individual RAF Tornado IDS aircraft has its own electronic counter pod. I have not found any information about the RAF ecr Tornado or the F4 Tornado aircraft on the internet at all. If anyone has any links i would be grateful or perhaps some photographs


You're right there is no RAF ECR version of the Tornado. Instead every RAF IDS version (the GR1 or GR4 in RAF service) is fitted with a Sky Shadow ECM pod and carries 2 ALARM missiles on stub pylons effectively making is a mini ECR version. This is only possible because the ALARM is such a small missile compared to similar missiles such as HARM.
As I said in an earlier post during the second Gulf war some surplus F3s were fitted with small pylons so they could carry ALARM and act in the SEAD role. Apparently they have a more advanced threat detection system than the GR4 making them more effective in this role. For a while is was suggested that the RAF might adapt some of the F3's being retired early (due to the continuing post cold war run-down) into dedicated SEAD machines with adaptations to the avionics fit (including the GR4 multi-mode radar and permanent ALARM mountings). This is were the EF3 designation sited by some people came from. However this appears to only be speculation and very low airframe F3's are gradually being scrapped.

This is a shocking waist of an effective aircraft, which could be adapted not only for SEAD duties but could also easily carry Storm Shadow cruise missiles or other AG ordinance. The F3 has significant commonality with the GR1/4 versions internally (to keep costs down) and I can't believe the MOD aren't looking at fitting the kit from high hour GR4's to the much newer and low hour F3's being scrapped, especially as the projected GR4 replacement is being delayed again and again- there are rumours that the GR4 will have to now remain in service until 2025+!!

The F3 even has some advantages over the GR4, most notably an increased internal fuel capacity due to the slight streatching of the fuselage.

[edit on 17-8-2006 by stumpy2000]



posted on Aug, 18 2006 @ 02:55 AM
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There are several occasions when I have been wrong but this isn't one of them fritzie.

ADV and IDS are manufacturers terms, not service ones, and they refer to the basic models; ie ALL attack models whether in service with the UK, Germany, Italy or Saudi are IDS but only RAF ones are 'GR.1' or 'GR.4'. If you have any clue about this subject you should know this as a matter of course. The spelling out of US designation systems is irrelevant. The designations I gave for UK Tornadoes are all correct and in use. Check them out.

Separately, The Phantom never was called the F.3. that was unoffocially applied by the press, not the RAF. The F-4J's were only a temporary acquisition to bolster the number of Phantoms in UK service to make up for those aircraft stationed in the Falklands and the F-4J's were bought in preference to an earlier plan to re-activate a third Lightning squadron. As such they never had the logical F.3 designation officially applied to them.



[edit on 18-8-2006 by waynos]



posted on Aug, 18 2006 @ 07:58 AM
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Originally posted by waynos
There are several occasions when I have been wrong but this isn't one of them fritzie.

ADV and IDS are manufacturers terms, not service ones, and they refer to the basic models; ie ALL attack models whether in service with the UK, Germany, Italy or Saudi are IDS but only RAF ones are 'GR.1' or 'GR.4'. If you have any clue about this subject you should know this as a matter of course. The spelling out of US designation systems is irrelevant. The designations I gave for UK Tornadoes are all correct and in use. Check them out.

Separately, The Phantom never was called the F.3. that was unoffocially applied by the press, not the RAF. The F-4J's were only a temporary acquisition to bolster the number of Phantoms in UK service to make up for those aircraft stationed in the Falklands and the F-4J's were bought in preference to an earlier plan to re-activate a third Lightning squadron. As such they never had the logical F.3 designation officially applied to them.



[edit on 18-8-2006 by waynos]


Sorry mate, you are wrong. The F4J in UK service was officially the Phantom F3, however no one every called it that in service. Instead it was simply referred to as F4J by the vast majority of people.
Also the Tornado EF3 does NOT officially exist, this was a made-up designation. There are some F3s modified to carry ALARM but they have not been redesignated, they haven't even recieved at suffix letter to distinguish them.



posted on Aug, 18 2006 @ 12:49 PM
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Tornado EF.3 IS an unofficial designation, that is correct, sorry for the misunderstanding. I was only claiming it was in use (whereas Tornado F.4 definitely is not) but I never made that clear. My fault.

You are quite mistaken about the Phantom however, the only official UK mark numbers EVER applied top the Phantom were FG.1 and FGR.2, it is not a case of nobody calling it that in service, the *official* designation of the F-4J in RAF service is F-4J(UK). Everyone *expected* the F.3 designation to be used officially, but it never happened. I once had it explained to me that this was done to avoid possible confusion with the Tornado F.3 which was coming into service, but I don't really believe that as it sounds too convenient. The designation was definitely never applied however.

It is one of only two examples I am aware of where a UK designation has not been applied, the other one being the C-17, although with the RAF's aircraft changing from leased to RAF ownership it could yet become the Globemaster C.1.

EDIT;

Since posting the above I have trawled my archive and I have dug out many references to the F-4J(UK) but only one to the Phantom F.3.

This is by way of a note in 'Aircraft in British Military Service since 1946' by Vic Flintham which is a catalogue of every individual aeroplane, helicopter, glider etc operated by the UK military since, as it says, 1946.

Here vic notes that an official proposal to designate the type as the Phantom F.3 was denied in order to avoid confusion with the Tornado F.3 (so much for me not believing that then).

By way of further contemporary evidence there is a perplexed Bill Gunston, writing in 1985 on the RAF'S newest acquisitions in his series on British Military Aircraft when he says

although it will almost certainly become the Phantom F.3 due to its vast difference from all the RAF's other Phantoms, MoD literature, inexplicably, continues to refer to the type as the F-4J, despite that fact that this is one change for UK service that would cost nothing.


As I said, the MoD never did make the change that was puzzling Bill so much at the time.



[edit on 18-8-2006 by waynos]



posted on Aug, 18 2006 @ 04:22 PM
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I'm back again (in reply to fritz) because I have just re-read a reply I only skimmed over at work this morning.




American aircraft have always been classified by their type since the early days of WWI, but really came in to their own class or type during WWII.


American aircraft? Er, why?




Y = Naval designation - Y/F 18E Super Hornet


Cobblers!
There has NEVER been a Y/F-18E, ever, at all.

Y is NOT naval, Y only means 'prototype' examples, YF-16, YF-17, YF-23, YF-22.

Which of these was a naval aeroplane? Thanks for the laugh though. I can't believe I missed it earlier, and YOU were telling ME I was 'quite wrong', classic!





he UK has also classified it's aircraft as follows:

ADV = Air Defence Version (Variants); (F Designation)
ECR = Electronic Countermeasures/Recce = the same as US 'Wild Weasel' missions
(EW Designation)
GR = Ground Attack/Reconnaissance (GR Designation - currently GR9)
IDS = Interdiction/Strike (F Designation)


Wrong,

as I said earlier, ADV and IDS are ONLY used by Panavia in relation to the basic models of Tornado, ECR is the German electronic variant.


The RF Designation has been dropped and is no longer in use.


Wrong again, the UK has NEVER used RF. Maybe you are thinking of FR? As in Meteor FR.9, Swift FR.5 or Hunter FR.10?

If you want a COMPLETE list of UK role designations (including a few examples of specific aircraft for illustrative purposes) I can provide one, honestly and truly, this is something I KNOW 100%, nailed on.

Of course I should add that you are at perfect liberty to disbelieve me, it is your prerogative and I wont scream and shout about it, but if you would find such a list helpful I would genuinely be happy to post one up.

[edit on 18-8-2006 by waynos]



posted on Aug, 18 2006 @ 06:11 PM
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Just to back up Waynos' info: I agree. Listen to him nboys and girls, this man knows his stuff.



posted on Aug, 23 2006 @ 01:09 PM
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Gentlemen, I sit corrected, but am convinced I am right on a number of issues.

With regards to WWII a/c designations, this did in fact take place and is still relavent today.

With regards to the Y/F designation, according to the Hornet website, this was a prototype a/c for the Navy but it was cancelled in favour of the F/A18A series of a/c.

Regarding the UK designations, I can only go by what I used to teach my students during recognition training. This training was [and is] laid down by the Royal school of Artillery, Larkhill, SPTA.

Anyway. I don't really care - 'cause I've got a couple of tinnies of Magners, some small ice cubes and a lot of catching up to do.




posted on Aug, 24 2006 @ 12:20 PM
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Thats very magnanimous of you fritz, and I also see you have your priorities in good order


I'm not sure what reference to WW2 you mean but The YF-17, served as the prototype and demonstrator for the F-18 (I have photo's of the YF-17 painted up in Australian and Spanish air force markings from a 1979 F-18 sales tour). The first F-18 to fly was designated 'F-18A' with it subsequently changing to F/A-18A for service after the A-18 atack version (A-7 replacement) was cancelled and both roles were combined into the single model. The only other F-18 designations that existed were the F-18L, an export version (L for 'land-based') that was offered by Northrop to the RAF and Luftwaffe in place of the Eurofighter EFA project, and the TF-18 conversion trainer which entered service as the F/A-18B.

[edit on 24-8-2006 by waynos]



posted on Aug, 24 2006 @ 03:14 PM
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That's okay Waynos. So glad you managed to find out a little about the Y/F designation and yes, it must feel good to be right at least once!



posted on Aug, 24 2006 @ 04:11 PM
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Originally posted by fritz
That's okay Waynos. So glad you managed to find out a little about the Y/F designation and yes, it must feel good to be right at least once!


Hmmm, I've known about these designations since I was about ten actually, but, Yes it does, maybe you will be right yourself one day?



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