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British Aerospace Nimrod

Maritime reconnaissance, anti-submarine and anti-ship warfare aircraft

British Aerospace Nimrod

 The first of 46 production British Aerospace Nimrod MR.Mk 1s flew on 28 June 1968

 
 
Country of origin United Kingdom
Entered service 1969
Crew 12 men
Dimensions and weight
Length 38.63 m
Wing span 35 m
Height 9.08 m
Weight (empty) 39 t
Weight (maximum take off) 87 t
Engines and performance
Engines 4 x Rolls-Royce RB.168-20 Sprey Mk.250 turbofans
Traction (dry) 4 x 54.00 kN
Maximum speed 926 km/h
Service ceiling 12.8 km
Range 9 266 km
Endurance 12 hours
Armament
Missiles AGM-84 Harpoon anti-ship missiles, AIM-9 Sidewinder short-range air-to-air missiles for self-defense.
Bombs bombs and depth charges
Other Stingray torpedoes

 

   In 1964 Hawker Siddeley began development of a maritime reconnaissance aircraft to replace the ageing, piston-engined Shackleton in service with RAF Coastal Command. Its HS.801 design used the airframe of the de Havilland Comet as a basis, but incorporated a ventral weapons pannier to give a new double bubble cross section and powerplant of four Spey turbofans. The prototype made its maiden flight on 23 May 1967 and the first of 46 production Nimrod MR.Mk 1s flew on 28 June 1968. The type entered service in 1969.

   The Nimrod is capable of conducting surveillance over land and sea, submarine attack and perform search and rescue missions.

   This aircraft could carry AGM-84 Harpoon anti-ship missiles, bombs and depth charges, as well as Stingray torpedoes. For self-defense could carry AIM-9 Sidewinder short-range air-to-air missiles.

   From 1975 MR.Mk 1s were upgraded to MR.Mk 2 standard, the first such conversation being redelivered to the RAF in August 1979. This variant introduced a completely new avionics and equipment suite, including a GEC central tactical system, a Thorn EMI Searchwater radar and an acoustics system compatible with modern sonobuoys.

   In the early 1980s eleven Nimrod MR Mk.1s were converted to Nimrod AEW Mk.3 standard in an abortive programme to provide the RAF with a new airborne early warning aircraft.

   The addition of an inflight-refuelling probe for the 1982 Falklands war created the Nimrod MR Mk. 2P - the P was subsequently dropped in the late 1990s. Wingtip-mounted Loral ESM pods were added later. Several Nimrods detached to Oman for Operation Desert Storm were modified with an underwing forward-looking infra-red, BOZ electronic counter measures pod and a towed radar decoy.

   Three further aircraft designated Nimrod R Mk.1 serve in the electronic intelligence-gathering role. A crashed R Mk.1 was replaced by converting a spare MR Mk.2 airframe in 1997.

   During the mid-1990s, BAe was selected to update 21 Nimrods to MRA Mk.4 standard. This involved a virtual total rebuild of the airframe, installation of 66.73-kN BMW Rolls-Royce BR.710 turbofans, strengthened undercarriage and new avionics and sensor suites that will maintain the Nimrod's capabilities at a very high standard. The programme was scheduled to deliver these revitalized machines in 2010. However the program was over budged and nine years behind schedule. Eventually this upgrade program was cancelled. As a result the Nimrod MR Mk.2 was withdrawn from the British service in 2010 without proper replacement.

   During over 30 years of service Nimrod force performed a wide variety of roles in support of UK's defense. It has been involved in every major conflict in the last 30 years.

 

 

 
 
British Aerospace Nimrod

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British Aerospace Nimrod

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British Aerospace Nimrod

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