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Singapore - New Fighter Jet May Be Set To Replace Singapore's Fleet (02 Jul 2003)

The first of 232 new Eurofighter Typhoon jets were handed over to Britain's Royal Air Force on Monday. The multi-role fighter is also in consideration to replace the Singapore Air Force's aging Super Skyhawks.

The twin-engine delta-wing Typhoon is designed to operate from hastily prepared bases and short runways and is a product of BAE Systems.

Besides the Eurofighter Typhoon, five other jets are also in the running to replace Singapore's fleet. They are Boeing's F-15 Strike Eagle and F-18 Super Hornet and Lockheed Martin's F-16 Fighting Falcon - all from the US, the French Dassault Rafale and the Russian Sukhoi Su-35.

BAE Systems shrugged off the competition, stating that these aircrafts have been in service for a few years.

However, the Eurofighter Typhoon features unrivalled and proven avionics, weaponry, sensors, electronic counter-measures and multi-mode radar. It can fly at sustained supersonic speeds without using an afterburner and can also outgun and outfly its rivals.

The Typhoon has been designed to offer reliability and low maintenance costs. It has sophisticated on-board testing systems and is less expensive to run than the generation of aircraft it is designed to replace.

BAE Systems offered supply of the latest Meteor beyond-visual-range air-to-air missiles, with no prior conditions.