A highly agile 4.5th generation fighter-bomber; capable of handling a wide variety of tasks from air defence to strategic strike. Only real drawback in the modern age is that it's not fully stealthy.
Developed during the height of the Cold War, it has been criticised as an overly-expensive interceptor, but has demonstrated its capability in a large number of exercises and has attracted wide interest from foreign buyers, including Saudi Arabia and India.
In service date 2007
Combat debut 2011 - Operation Unified Protector (Libya)
Maximum speed Mach 2 at altitude, Mach 1.2 at sea level. Can "supercruise" at Mach 1.1 to 1.5.
Maximum range 1,800 miles normal, 2,350 in "ferry mode" (with maximum fuel and minimum equipment)
Service ceiling c. 65,000 feet/20,000 metres
Rate of climb Over 315 metres per second
Guns One 27mm Mauser cannon with 150 rounds of ammo
Missile options The aircraft has a total of 13 hard-points for mounting weapons/targeting pods/fuel tanks etc.
- AIM-132 Advanced Short-Range Air-To-Air Missile (ASRAAM): A British replacement for the popular Sidewinder, this is a heat-seeking air-to-air missile capable of being locked onto a target after launch, allowing for over-the-shoulder shots. Range approximately 10 miles.
- AIM-120 Advanced Medium-Range Air-To-Air Missile (AMRAAM): Active-radar-guided air-to-air missile; range approximately 30 miles.
- Storm Shadow: Stand-off GPS-guided cruise missile, range approximately 150 miles.
- Brimstone: Anti-armour missile with a high-level of accuracy, range approximately 7 miles.
- Paveway laser-guided bombs
- Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM) GPS-guided bombs
- CAPTOR radar system; capable of "track while scan".
- Passive Infra-Red Airborne Tracking Equipment (PIRATE): allows for tracking of aircraft without using radar.
- Electronic Counter Measures (ECM), including jammers, flares (decoy heat-seekers) and chaff (decoy radar-guided missiles)
- Radar Warning Receiver: Detects enemy radars and allows identification of type of radar (by extension, what is emitting it).
- Helmet-Mounted Sight: Allows for firing of ASRAAMs at up to 60 degrees off nose-line, considerably boosting one's performance in dogfighting.
- Voice-activated control system that allows most non-flying functions except weapons release to be done by voice.
- Zero-zero ejection seat