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RAF Nimrod

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posted on Aug, 5 2004 @ 06:09 AM
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RAF Nimrod

I originally wanted to cover just the MR.A4 upgrade program but thought that many people would not know what a Nimrod is anyway so I decided to do the whole thing. Therefore, this will be much longer. Words in italic can be looked up in the glossary. This first article is about the MR2 and R1 versions. Further down will be information on the new MR4 aircraft.

History

The Nimrod is based on the airframe of the worlds first jet passenger airliner, the deHavilland Comet. After several disastrous Comet crashes in the 1950s caused by metal fatigue, the Comet 4 version was developed. For passenger service this was commercially unsuccessful, as the damage had already been done to the Comets reputation and there was already a very successful passenger jet liner in service by the time the Comet was allowed to fly again.

The Nimrod first entered RAF service in 1969. The Nimrod MR2 can carry out the roles of Anti Submarine or Surface Unit Warfare and Search and Rescue. The R1 version collects electronic intelligence.

Description

The Nimrod is powered by four jet engines and performs the dedicated role of maritime patrol. The Nimrod can fly on just two engines, conserving fuel, allowing it to patrol for 10 hours without refuelling. However, the Nimrod is also capable of in flight refuelling.

The Nimrod is still the only land based, jet powered marine patrol aircraft in the world. Jet aircraft are more stealthy than propeller powered aircraft because propeller-engined aircraft make a discrete resonance that can be detected by submerged submarines whereas the jet noise of the Nimrod is virtually undetectable.

Crew

2 Pilots and a flight engineer operate the flight deck.
2 Navigators, who swap between routine and tactical responsibilities every other sortie.
An Air Electronics Officer (AEO), who is sensor and communications coordinator.
The sensor team includes 3 Air Electronic Operators (known as 'wet men') who are responsible for monitoring both active (searching) and passive (listening) sonobuoys.
The remaining 4 Air Electronic Operators (known as 'dry men') manage a wide range of avionics and weapon systems essential in delivering Nimrod's capability.

Roles

Weapons discussed in the roles section will be discussed later in much more detail.

Anti Surface Unit Warfare role (ASUW)

The Nimrod carries weapons in a weapons bay. Its weapons bay is the largest on any MPA in the world. For the Anti surface unit warfare role, the Nimrod can attack ships using bombs or the long range missiles.

Anti Submarine Warfare (ASW)

For Anti Submarine Warfare the Nimrod can find and track enemy submarines. From its internal weapons bay it can then drop depth charges or torpedos.

Search and Rescue role

The aircraft can operate as low as 200 feet whilst over the sea. The Nimrod can drop multi seat dinghies, survival packs and other stores to help people.

Electronic Intelligence gathering

A few Nimrods had all their maritime equipment removed and replaced with a highly sophisticated and sensitive suite of systems used for reconnaissance and the gathering of electronic intelligence. The Nimrod is particularly suited to this role as it can loiter for long periods and make a high speed dash to the area of operation. These Nimrods are known as R1s.

Specifications

Crew : 13
Engines : 4 Rolls-Royce Spey turbofans (MR2 and R1)
Thrust : 48560 lbs combined total of 4 engines
Top Speed : 575 mph
Length : 38.63 m
Range : 3800 miles

Weapons

For ASUW, the Nimrod can carry General purpose 1000lb bombs or Harpoon anti ship missiles in the internal weapons bay.

For ASW, Stingray torpedos or depth charges are deployed.

Sea mines can also be dropped from the aircraft.

In the weeks preceding the Falklands war of 1982, some Nimrods were modified to carry two Sidewinders on each wing. Incredibly, these werent just for self defence. They were intended to allow for opportunity attacks on enemy Argentinean surveillance aircraft.

See www.raf.mod.uk..." target="_blank" class="postlink" rel="nofollow">this page for more information on any of these missiles

Sites I used for information

RAF

Target Lock


[edit on 5/8/04 by Hyperen]




posted on Aug, 5 2004 @ 06:10 AM
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ASUW : Anti surface unit warfare, essentially, anti ship warfare (not submarines)

ASW : Anti submarine warfare

MPA : Maritime Patrol Aircraft



posted on Aug, 5 2004 @ 06:12 AM
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RAF Nimrod MR2 on patrol finds two submarines





[edit on 5/8/04 by Hyperen]



posted on Aug, 5 2004 @ 06:14 AM
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Nimrod MR4

In the 1990s, BAe began planning to build a Nimrod replacement. The RAF considered bids from Lockheed with its P-3, Loral Corp, with rebuilt ex-US Navy Orions, and Dassault with the Atlantique 3. In July 1997, they awarded the contract to BAe with the substantially rebuilt Nimrod MR4.A. The MRA.4 is essentially a new aircraft, with new engines, a new, larger wing, and fully refurbished fuselage.

Originally the contract was for 21 MR4s but this was reduced to 18 and then to 16. Very recently, in July 2004, Geoff Hoon (British Defence Minister) said that just 12 of these aircraft may be sufficient.

The modern turbofan engine that is being installed is the Rolls-Royce/BMW BR71. These will bring the total thrust up to from 48560 lbs to 59600 lbs, a 23% increase.

The new wings are being fitted with an additional two hardpoints. It is known that these can carry Sidewinders and Harpoons. However, it has been said that ALARMs, ASRAAMs, AMRAAMs and Stingray torpedos could be carried on these pylons.

The new MR4 would be able to carry 8 Sidewinders.

With the new engines, the plane could fly for 15 hours or 6000 miles unrefuelled.

The plane is expected to come into service in 2009.

Sites I used for information

Air Force Technology

Wikipedia

Target Lock

Global Defence


[edit on 5/8/04 by Hyperen]



posted on Aug, 5 2004 @ 06:15 AM
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The new cockpit of the MR4 with 7 full colour LCD displays.




posted on Aug, 5 2004 @ 06:52 AM
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The 2 S/Ms that were 'found' were RN & USN boats that often used to surface at the North pole during the 80s & 90s, especially at Christmas & New Year. I think it happened again in 2003. There was often a bit of a 'kickabout' on the ice. Obviously the RN crews won this ice soccer! Don't think the 'Nimbat' will be able to carry Tigerfish (I don't think Mk24s are used any more by RN S/Ms anyway), they are way too big.

[edit on 5-8-2004 by LordofLard]



posted on Aug, 5 2004 @ 07:56 AM
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BAE had all sorts of problems with the wings and power plant upgrades for Nimrod. BAE recieved a sample aircraft from the RAF removed the wings and then measured up the dimensions for the new wings. When it came to fixing the wing on the sample aircraft all went well but when the rest of the aircraft came to be refitted they found the wings didnt fit. This was because the originals comets were hand made and the dimensions of each aircraft were unique.

Needless to say at great cost to the MOD new individual wings needed to be fabricated on the plus side though for one plane they have a lifetime of spare wings!!!



Cheers


Debaser



posted on Aug, 5 2004 @ 08:21 AM
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Good article, very informative thank you. As for the use of the Tigerfish they have since been replaced by the Sperefish (scroll down to HWTs) introduced in 94 and taken out of service in July of this year, but as for the Nimrod the MR2 does not use the Tigerfish, but as some of the sites posted by Hyperen mainly AFT (direct link to MRa4 page) say it will use the Tigerfish.



posted on Aug, 5 2004 @ 08:39 AM
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OK. I've changed some of the stuff and hope it is more accurate.

I wasn't sure about the AMRAAMs, ASRAAMs and ALARMs though.

The plane is a MPA not an air superiority fighter!

It'll almost certainly be able to carry 8 Sidewinders... 8 !

[edit on 5/8/04 by Hyperen]



posted on Aug, 5 2004 @ 09:26 AM
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I did some user training on Spearfish- awesome weapon (they had to scale down some of its capabilities) but very expensive & we were restricted in our tactics we could use with them because of the expense.



posted on Aug, 5 2004 @ 01:41 PM
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I always wondered how someone could turn an OK looking aircraft, the Comet



into this



How make your own Nimrod from a Comet



posted on Aug, 5 2004 @ 01:51 PM
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Thanks for another great post about an overlooked aircraft. Plus it is a very cool name. I wish my mom and dad had named me NIMROD!!!



posted on Aug, 5 2004 @ 01:59 PM
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Originally posted by groingrinder
Thanks for another great post about an overlooked aircraft.


Your welcome. Thanks for the feedback. It takes a while to write these things up but when it makes people learn more about an aircraft, it's rewarding.

When I heard about that MR4 program, I wanted to know more on the Nimrod. Then I learnt about what a great plane it is.

It's so versatile. Think about destroying submarines, ships and aircraft then saving some lives by dropping dinghies all in one sortie!

[edit on 5/8/04 by Hyperen]



posted on Aug, 5 2004 @ 02:45 PM
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Good Post. The Nimrod is a very versitile martime patrol craft. It basically covers all of the bases in that role. It is however one of the ugliest planes I have ever seem
The US considered it as a replacement for the P-3 Orion.



posted on Aug, 6 2004 @ 01:07 PM
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Originally posted by FredT
The US considered it as a replacement for the P-3 Orion.


They didn't get it because everyone knows Americans will only buy American things for the good of their ecomomy and pride.



posted on Aug, 6 2004 @ 03:59 PM
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We can all say a prayer of thanks to those that lost their lives iin the original Comet crashes.

That series of horrible disasters taught the world what we now know about jets and high altitude metal fatigue.....information which Britain - quite rightly - instantly shared with the world so no-one else had to suffer the losses.



posted on Aug, 7 2004 @ 03:56 AM
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Originally posted by Hyperen
They didn't get it because everyone knows Americans will only buy American things for the good of their ecomomy and pride.


Hmm quite and Airbus refused a contract from PW Canada for the engines on the A400M Transport even thought it had the cheaper bid for a better engine. The engine will be supplied by a EU supplier. The game is played on both sides of the Atlantic.


RAB

posted on Aug, 7 2004 @ 06:07 AM
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when the MR4 finally comes into service it will be a very cool plane 6000 mile range plus air to air refueling and a capability to both obtain Elint info and then blow stuff up. It's also possable that the MR4 will carry the paveway just for fun :-)



posted on Aug, 7 2004 @ 06:38 AM
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Originally posted by RAB
when the MR4 finally comes into service it will be a very cool plane 6000 mile range plus air to air refueling and a capability to both obtain Elint info and then blow stuff up. It's also possable that the MR4 will carry the paveway just for fun :-)



The Paveway III I would hape


[edit on 7/8/2004 by 300k]



posted on Aug, 7 2004 @ 07:17 AM
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Originally posted by FredT

Hmm quite and Airbus refused a contract from PW Canada for the engines on the A400M Transport even thought it had the cheaper bid for a better engine. The engine will be supplied by a EU supplier. The game is played on both sides of the Atlantic.


Come on Fred we've discussed this before.

You might even be right that in some parts of the specs the PW Canada engine is the better compared to an alternate one.....but since when did anyone buy anything on the basis of spec alone (in many cases initial purchase price isn't even the deciding factor)?

The point is that you can have no clue as to the total packages being offered by PW Canada and the alternate.

www.hebig.org...


Europrop International - Rolls-Royce Plc (UK), Snecma SA (F), MTU GmbH (D) and Industria de Turbo Propulsores SA (E) - will supply about 900 turboprop engines for the 180 Airbus A400M military transporters. The 3 billion Euro deal is a victory over competing Pratt & Whitney Canada, who looked like the winner until last week, when France and other European governments made clear they would insist on a European solution. France is both a A400M buyer and owner of Snecma.

"We have decided to opt for the European consortium's engine as the best overall solution and due to the substantial price efforts made," said Manfred Bischoff, EADS co-chairman. Europrop was given extra time to match Pratt's offer because of the "strong political dimension" of the contract. The revision is believed to include a 10 - 20% price reduction after Pratt's price was 20% below Europrop's initial offer. As expected, the European engine is said be technically vastly superior to the Canadian design. It will be the most powerful turboprop engine ever produced in the Western world, Airbus said.

While some say the outcome is an act of protectionism, other consider it an important move to safeguard and strengthen the Europen aviation and defence industries after America basically blocks foreign bidders' access to its weapon programs. The A400M will play a central role in Europe's defence strategy, and it is considered a disadvantage to be dependent of a non-European country with key components like propulsion.

The outcome may also be considered a lesson learned from the recent drain of European defence know-how to the United States. In 2002, Germany sold out its leading edge design of hydrogen cell powered submarines and possibly also of main battle tanks to US companies


- as you can see european suppliers won this contract because of price and the undeniably advanced technical specification offered (in addition to any extra 'package' benefits) ; they might not be the sole reasons but they alone were sufficient to win the contract.



[edit on 7-8-2004 by sminkeypinkey]




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