RAF Typhoons take part in German-led exercise

Eurofighter Typhoon FGR4s from No 11 (Fighter) Squadron at RAF Coningsby, Lincolnshire, have taken part in the German-led Exercise MAGDay over the southern North Sea.

Royal Air Force (RAF) Typhoon FGR4 multi-role fighters and Luftwaffe (German Air Force) Eurofighter EF-2000s and Panavia Tornado IDS/ECRs took part in the three-day exercise, which started on June 22. The aircraft were joined by Lockheed Martin F-16 Fighting Falcons from the US Air Force (USAF) and Royal Netherlands Air Force (RNLAF), along with Swiss Air Force-operated Boeing F/A-18C/D Hornets.

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A pair of RAF Eurofighter Typhoon FGR4s in flight during Exercise MAGDay in late June. MoD Crown Copyright/SAC Tom Cann

Air-to-air refuelling (AAR) support for Exercise MAGDay was provided by an RAF-operated Airbus A330 Voyager KC2/KC3, a USAF Boeing KC-135R Stratotanker and a German Air Force-operated Airbus A310 and A400M Atlas.

The officer commanding No 11(F) Squadron said: “Exercise MAGDay provides 11(F) Squadron with the opportunity to demonstrate our ability to project UK air power and fight in a complex environment, shoulder-to-shoulder with our closest allies.”

A Typhoon FGR4 pilot with No 11(F) Squadron who flew in the exercise added that: “Participation in Ex MAGDay has required detailed tactical planning and coordination with our European and US counterparts. The execution provided an excellent opportunity to reinforce and hone our interoperability skills with key NATO allies to undertake multi-role missions. In this case involving 40 aircraft from five nations.”

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A Luftwaffe (German Air Force) EF-2000 - serial 30+47 (c/n GS032) - receives fuel from an RAF-operated Airbus A330 Voyager KC2/KC3 during the exercise. MoD Crown Copyright/SAC Tom Cann

According to the RAF, as part of the exercise, Typhoon FGR4s and its German counterpart, the EF-2000, conducted AAR operations with a Voyager KC2/KC3 off the German North Sea coast before going on to undertake further training over northern Germany.

“Exercise MAGDay also created an ideal environment to test the RAF’s ability to communicate with other national communication systems within the NATO alliance, an important aspect for coalition air operations,” the air arm said.