Spain Joins Franco-German FCAS Fighter Programme

 In Contractors, Europe, UK, EU, Air, Space, Germany, France, Domains, NATO

Spain has joined the exist­ing Franco-German effort to devel­op a future combat air system (FCAS), which is sched­uled to enter ser­vice by 2040.

During a NATO meet­ing in Brussels on 14 February, Spain’s min­is­ter of defence, Margarita Robles, signed a letter of intent with her respec­tive French and German coun­ter­parts, Florence Parly and Ursula von der Leyen, cov­er­ing the coun­try’s inte­gra­tion into the pro­gramme.

Madrid says that the coun­try is join­ing the ini­tia­tive on “equal terms with France and Germany” and that the project will give Spain “lead­er­ship vis­i­bil­i­ty” within European secu­ri­ty and defence poli­cies.

Noting that Spain is already a part­ner in the Eurofighter pro­gramme – togeth­er with Germany, Italy and the UK – the defence min­istry says the com­mit­ment will pro­vide “qual­i­ty oppor­tu­ni­ties to the Spanish defence indus­try” and enable the coun­try to main­tain a “solid base” of aero­space activ­i­ties.

The FCAS pro­gramme will com­prise devel­op­ment of a manned fight­er jet and unmanned air­craft, which can be oper­at­ed togeth­er.

Aircraft devel­oped under the pro­gramme will replace the Eurofighters oper­at­ed by Germany and Spain, as well as France’s Dassault Rafale fight­ers.

Airbus Defence & Space – which has exten­sive activ­i­ties in Spain – and Dassault have been select­ed as prime con­trac­tors for FCAS pro­gramme, while Safran Aircraft Engines and MTU Aero Engines have joined forces to build the air­craft’s pow­er­plants.

Spanish man­u­fac­tur­er ITP is a share­hold­er in the Eurojet con­sor­tium that builds the EJ200 engine for the Eurofighter – as is the com­pa­ny’s parent, Rolls-Royce.

However, R‑R has been select­ed as propul­sion part­ner for the UK’s Tempest next-gen­er­a­tion fight­er pro­gramme.

Source: Flight Global

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