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RAF jets shoot down 53 drones in largest air-to-air missile mass firing exercise | UK News


RAF jets shot down 53 drones in their most advanced short-range air-to-air missile salvo.

In 10 days, pilots from eight different squadrons successfully shot down dozens of drones at sea at the Hebrides Aerial Weapons Range in Scotland last month.

Typhoon and Lightning jets took part in the test, designed to give pilots and weapons crews more confidence in using infrared-guided missiles and give them a real-life experience. economy when shooting them.

Footage of the exercise shows the missile being launched from an aircraft and flying through the sky.

A hum can be heard as the missile shoots over the planes bound by their drone targets.

One pilot taking part in the exercise described the rocket launch experience as “amazing”.

“It surpassed all of my expectations for my first live-fire exercise on Typhoon Typhoon,” he said.

“Choosing a weapon and knowing a real missile is going off the rails is a unique moment; hearing the rocket sound and pulling the trigger, followed by a loud buzzing sound and an airplane. Slight wobble is great.

“Watching the rocket disappear into the sky in front of me was a memorable moment, really impressive how fast ASRAAM can go.”

The pilots targeted the Banshee drone, which is specifically designed for these training exercises.

Typhoon pilot from RAF Lossiemouth in Moray, as well as from RAF Coningsby in Lincoln, worked with Lightning pilots based at RAF Marham in Kings Lynn, during the exercise.

Screenshot showing a salvo of advanced short-range surface-to-air missiles (ASRAAM) launched by Hurricane FGR4 and F-35B Lightning II aircraft during the Hebrides training range September 12 to 23 .

One of the weapons technicians involved in the aircraft preparation said: “The preparation of the aircraft and missiles is very important for many more junior members of the squadron, it gives them the opportunity to understand. the challenges of live fire drills.

“Operating armed aircraft requires all those involved to maintain the highest level of concentration due to the added risks that come with it.

“As a weapons technician, you get job satisfaction when you’ve unloaded the aircraft, done all the post-load tests and watched it fly away armed.

“When the plane comes back ‘clean’ after successfully firing the missile, it attests to the years of training, hard work and months of preparation.”

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