Archive for February, 2008

Sponsor the World’s Biggest Seafront Airshow

Tuesday, February 26th, 2008

Airbourne, the biggest seafront airshow in the world, is offering major companies across the country an opportunity not to be missed.Sponsors are invited for this popular aerobatic event with the chance to reach over 500,000 visitors. Eastbourne Borough Council are organising Airbourne and this week are sending out sponsorship packs to more than 750 organisations up and down the UK, as well as locally, to lure them to Eastbourne’s premier airshow in 2008.

Potential sponsors will receive a letter, copy of the 2007 Airbourne programme plus a detailed pack outlining the sponsorship opportunities available, including access to 500,000+ visitors, branding in 20,000 souvenir programmes, features in 50,000 pre-event promotional materials plus multimedia opportunities through the web and Radio Airbourne.

Eastbourne Borough Council Spokesperson for Tourism, Cllr Steve Wallis said “Airbourne 2008 really is an opportunity not to be missed. Any company, however big or small, can get involved and promote their product to hundreds of thousands of people. Set on Eastbourne’s beautiful seafront location and attracting exciting flying displays year in year out, Airbourne is the main event on the south coast and I can’t wait to see the responses we receive.”

Potential Airbourne sponsors have been identified and are being offered the chance to sponsor the event in a variety of ways, from being named the event’s headline or title sponsor, to sponsoring individual flying displays.

Keen to secure sponsors as soon as possible, a special promotional DVD trailer is being made to follow up this initial sponsorship pack. This will use exclusive footage from Airbourne, including unseen cockpit footage, helmet-cam vantage points from the RAF Falcons Parachute Team, and unique aerial views of Eastbourne’s jam-packed coastline. Targeted companies will see for themselves the excellent opportunities presented by this event.

With trade space available for sponsors, as well as companies wishing to sell and exhibit from Eastbourne’s Western Lawns over the four day event, Airbourne presents an excellent opportunity for local businesses too, with the chance to increase brand awareness and promote the company locally.

Airbourne returns to Eastbourne this year from 14-17 August and promises four days of action-packed flying fun. Filling the skies with spectacular aerobatic displays, visitors can watch a vibrant mix of fast jets, helicopters, warbirds, historics and freefall parachutists.

If this isn’t enough the entertainment continues through to the evenings too, with a packed programme of events, including Big Band night and concerts at the Bandstand plus a spectacular and breathtaking firework finale on the Sunday night.

To find out more about sponsorship opportunities at this year’s Airbourne, email or telephone 01323 415442. For more information visit

Historic Aircraft to Support Air Museum Events

Monday, February 11th, 2008

Early indications from the RAF Events Participation Committee reveal that several aircraft from the legendary Battle of Britain Memorial Flight will be allocated to support forthcoming events at the Yorkshire Air Museum.At Battlegroup North, the increasingly popular ‘war gaming weekend’ and historic military vehicle gathering, we have been allocated the magnificent Lancaster, the ultimate symbol of victory in the air war of WWII, on Saturday 10th May, and the following day the Dakota, probably the most successful aircraft type in aviation history, will grace the skies of Elvington.

These flypasts will be the icing on the cake of what promises to be another spectacular occasion, following last years record breaking event which saw some 200 military vehicles on display, alongside fascinating Living History diorama’s and the amazing tabletop war games, showing precision modelling at it’s finest. These complex games of strategy allow participation from visitors and once again some of the best exhibition and participation games from around the country will be on show.

On Sunday 22nd June, the Hurricane and Spitfire, legends of the Battle of Britain, will provide a ‘Victory Flypast’ at the Classic Wings & Wheels Show, a perfect salute to the gathering of classic and veteran cars.

Wherever possible, these flypasts will be supplemented by other displays from veteran aircraft such as the Tiger Moth and Chipmunk, famous as early training aircraft for RAF pilots, providing some ‘heart in the mouth’ action for visitors to enjoy.

During the season, a series of ‘Thunder Day’s’ will celebrate this centenary year of powered flight in Britain and the 90th Anniversary of the formation of the Royal Air Force. These events will see some of our big jets, such as the Blackburn Buccaneer and Handley Page Victor conducting live engine runs and the first of these will actually see the mighty Victor K2 doing rolling down Elvington’s runway, on Saturday 5th April.

So, it will all be happening here at the Yorkshire Air Museum this summer, but if you cannot wait until then, there will be lot’s still to see during the half-term holidays.

For further information, please contact the Museum on 01904 608595 or look up our website:

POTY 2008 – Theme 1 – Prop Power

Tuesday, February 5th, 2008

The final set of results are now in for theme 1, and very well done to all who scored points, and commiserations to those who didnt.

Special congratulations this month go to Neil Darby from Tilehurst for taking this months prize having accrued a total of 32 points.

Luke Glazzard holds 2nd place with 24 points and 2 others are in joint 3rd place with 21 points. Check out the Entries and Results table to see how you did.

Still early days yet, and plenty of points up for grabs… Theme 2 “Old Age” is really starting to look interesting and will certainly draw upon your creative and technical skills, I am very impressed so far.

Good Luck to you all, I look forward to receiving your entries.


Back in Black!

Friday, February 1st, 2008

The Royal Air Force Museum is proud to announce its newest exhibit: the prototype Eurofighter Typhoon DA-2/ZH588. The first of its kind to be on display in the UK.The Typhoon was brought in by road on Tuesday 22nd Jan and moved into the Milestones of Flight Exhibition Hall the following day. Engineers from RAF Conningsby and RAF St Athens assembled the aircraft. It is currently on display ‘on the ground’ but will be permanently suspended at the front of the viewing gallery in March.

Aircraft History: EUROFIGHTER DA-2/ZH588

One of seven EF 2000 Development Aircraft (DAs) built by the Eurofighter Partner Companies (EPCs), six of which later formed part of an intensive Flight Test Programme (FTP), as one had been lost in a crash. Built as a single-seat airframe. Although DA2 was completed and ready for flight first, it was the German built DA1 which made the first flight, at Manching, Germany, on 27 March 1994.

14 Aug 93 Rolled out at BAE Warton in two-tone grey colour scheme.

30 Aug 93 First engine runs.

6 Apr 94 First flight, at British Aerospace (now BAE Systems) Warton, Lancs, flown by BAe AirOPs director Chris Yeo, for a 50 minute flight, during which it attained a gentle 287mph at 10,000ft. Photos – Eurofighter Typhoon (Harkins) p.89; Royal Air Force Yearbook 1995 p28.

Fitted with interim RB.199 Mk 104E turbofans as the EJ200 engine was not yet ready for flight testing. This was the first of the British development aircraft, and was later used for flight envelope expansion and carefree handling trials. 575 sorties were scheduled as the aircraft’s test life.

4 May 94 Flown in front of UK Government Ministers and government and industry officials at Warton.

24 May 94 Ninth flight (Pilot John Turner), by the end of which DA2 had accumulated 7 hours 14 minutes flight time, at up to 327-kts (605km/h/376mph) at 7,924m/26,000ft and manoeuvres up to 3.5g. Aircraft then grounded for structural inspection and retrofitted with first software upgrade for flight control and cockpit displays, instrumentation, and associated systems replacing the initial Tornado-style analogue cockpit instruments.

17 May 95 Second phase of development flying commenced with first flight – its tenth – since installation of new software – a 1hr 25 minute evening flight taking off at 18.54, returning at 20.16 following three practice approaches; pilot Chris Yeo, escorted by a Tornado GR.1 chase plane. Completed eight flights 17 May – 8 June.

Diverted to RAF Leeming, Yorkshire on the 13th flight on 24 May due to adverse weather conditions at Warton. Pilot John Turner, EF200 Project Pilot at Warton.

Jun 95 On static display at Paris airshow at Le Bourget, flying in on 9 June (Flight 18, pilot John Turner) and leaving on the evening of 13 June (Flight 19). Photo departing – Air Forces Monthly August 1995 p.17.

15 Jun 95 Flight 20; First supersonic flight by DA2; reached Mach 1.05. Pilot Chris Yeo.

Flights 20, 22 and 23 concerned rapid role manoeuvres and loops.

24 Jun 95 At RAF Leeming for two days with reported fuel leak. Photo at Leeming – Air Forces Monthly August 1995 p.3.

Flights 22 and 23 were on 28 June, entering the loops at 5,000ft, beginning at 300 knots, but slowing to 190 knots.

22/23 Jul 95 Appeared at RIAT Fairford, Gloucestershire for its first public flying demonstration, flying its 31st, 33rd and 34th flights which included further tests – radio communications trials off the south coast of England at 25-30,000ft and engine handling trials on the way back to Warton.

9 Nov 95 Flight 57 – RAF EF 2000 pilot Squadron Leader Simon Dyde flew the aircraft for the first time on a 70 minute sortie from Warton.

31 Dec 95 By this date DA-2 had logged 67 sorties. Most of the development flying was by BAe Eurofighter project pilot John Turner.

25 Jan 96 Photographed at Warton. Air Forces Monthly March 1996 p.2.

28 Aug 96 By this date, DA-2 had made 128 flights; 132 by 30 August.

2- 7 Sep 96 Displayed in flight at Farnborough by Eurofighter Project Pilot John Turner. Photos – Aircraft Illustrated April 1999 p.31; Air Forces Monthly October 1996 pp.32-33, November 1996 p.40.

Nov 96 Following its appearance at Farnborough, the aircraft was taken out of service for routine inspection and maintenance and upgrades, including preparations and software for phase three of the flight expansion trials (carefree handling to evaluate the Flight Control System, refuelling, etc). The updates included the fitting of a spin recovery parachute and gantry as a safety measure to facilitate the Carefree Handling Trials. Trials flown by Craig Penrice, Eurofighter Typhoon Project Pilot.

Nov 97 Involved in ground refuelling trials with an RAF Lockheed Tristar tanker during a detachment to RAF Brize Norton between 10 and 14 November. Photo – Air Forces Monthly January 1998 p.3.

23 Dec 97 Reached design goal speed of mach 2 over the Irish Sea.

12 Jan 98 Involved in first air to air refuelling trials with an RAF VC10 K3 tanker (ZA149). Photos – Harkins p.101; Air Forces Monthly April 1998 p.6.

1998 Grounded and retrofitted with definitive EJ200 powerplant; also given cockpit system upgrades and had a Martin Baker Mk 16A zero – zero ejection seat fitted.

Aug 98 Returned to flight following modification.

1998 Flown in all black scheme at RAF Leuchars.

Sep 98 Flown in formation with the RAF Red Arrows formation team during the opening ceremony for the Farnborough International Air show.

Mar 99 DA-2 completed its ‘baseline configuration’ flutter trials at Mach 1.2 and 750kts Equivalent Air Speed (EAS) as part of the Weapon System Development Programme-this equated to a True air Speed of 800-kts. It had also flown to an altitude of 50,000ft to test the aircraft’s high altitude capability.

Apr 99 Equipped with new ASP (Aircrew services package) DA2 reached an altitude of 50,000ft.

May 99 Conducted ground-carrying trials of various dummy stores intended for the Typhoon. Photos – Harkins p.107.

Jul 00 Flew with 2b2 flight control software installed, as the first of the development aircraft to receive the upgrade.

28 Jul 00 Began series of survey flights for which the aircraft’s skin was covered in 490 pressure transducers, for which it was painted in an all-black colour scheme which hid the sensors and pads.

Jul 00 Shown at Farnborough Airshow, and with DA1, made the first public Typhoon formation flight. Photos – Harkins p.104.

2001 Deployed to RAF Leuchars for airflow measurement trials. Photos – Harkins p.103/105/109. Carried markings of No 43 ‘Fighting Cocks’ Squadron during this deployment.

Other tasks that year included engine re-light trials.

Jan 02 Two Typhoons, DA2 and DA4 were refuelled at the same time in parallel from an RAF tanker aircraft.

7 Apr 02 By this date, the aircraft had made 419 flights, with 374.7 flying hours.

Jul 02 Flown at Farnborough Air Show, including being part of a four-Typhoon display on 23 July-the first time four aircraft had been shown together. Photos – Eurofighter Typhoon (Harkins) p.37/108/173.

2002 Conducted captive flight trials with MBDA ASRAAM air – air missile

Jul 02 The carefree handling trials were completed around this time. They had included fitting an extensive four-missile configuration to clear the Typhoon for Initial operational Clearance.

Followed by Defensive Aids Sub-System trials.

2006 At Warton, DA-2 continuing successful testing of a Towed Decoy in long-lasting flights and a new pilot’s helmet design, fully integrated into the avionics system.

2007 Final flight at RAF Coningsby, Lincolnshire. Some spares recovery, including engines, for other development batch and RAF aircraft.

c. Nov 07 Dismantled and taken by road from RAF Coningsby to RAF Brize Norton, Oxon for C-17 air portability trials, to be held December 2007.

22 Jan 08 By road to RAFM Hendon for suspended display in Milestones Gallery, moving into the building the following day.

Eurofighter prototype DA1 is also preserved, being with the Deutsches Museum Flugwerft Schleissheim near Munich since March 2007.

Aircraft History, by Andy Simpson

· Royal Air Force Museum, Grahame Park Way, London, NW9 5LL

· Free admission and parking. Nearest tube, Colindale (Northern Line)

· For further information please visit: