Panavia Tornado GR4 Bomber Plane
The Panavia Tornado is a variable geometry aircraft designed to fill the roles of a fighter bomber or interceptor depending on it's configuration. It was developed and built by Panavia, a tri-national consortium consisting of British Aerospace, MBB of West Germany, and Alenia Aeronautica of Italy, the Panavia Tornado made it's first flight in August 1974 and entered service with the RAF in 1979. Production ceased in 1999 after 992 Tornados had been made.
The Tornado GR4 strike aircraft is a modification of the RAF's Tornado GR1 strike aircraft, improvements were based on lessons learned in the Gulf war where lack of suitable laser designators resulted in the emergency use of Blackburn Buccaneer aircraft equipped with the Pave Spike laser designator to allow the GR1's to deliver laser guided munitions. A total of 142 GR1's were converted to the GR4 standard between 1996 and 2003 and are fitted with a TIALD laser designator.
|Tornado GR4 Specifications: |
- Crew: 2
- Length: 16.72 m (54 ft 10 in)
- Wingspan: 13.91 m at 25° wing sweep, 8.60 m at 67° wing sweep (45.6 ft / 28.2 ft)
- Height: 5.95 m (19.5 ft) Wing area: 26.6 m² (286 ft²)
- Empty weight: 13,890 kg (31,620 lb) Max takeoff weight: 28,000 kg (61,700 lb)
- Engines: Twin 76.8 kN (17,270 lbf) Turbo-Union RB199-34R Mk 103 afterburning turbofans
- Maximum speed: Mach 2.34 (2,417.6 km/h, 1,511 mph)
- Combat range: 1,390 km (870 mi)
- Service ceiling: 15,240 m (50,000 ft)
- Rate of climb: 76.7 m/s (15,100 ft/min)
- Thrust/weight: 0.55
This RAF Tornado it's variable geometry wings fully swept
back in the aircrafts high
RAF 15 Squadron
This Tornado GR4 picture has been digitally re-mastered from a MOD picture, it therefore contains public sector information licensed under the Open Government Licence v2.0
Panavia Tornado GR4 Spare Parts
Following the total retirement of the RAF's Tornado F3 fighters in favour of the Eurofighter Typhoon F1 as of the 1st of Mar 2011, all remaining F3's were designated as spares for the RAF's Tornado GR4 fleet which the Royal Air Force has recently stated it's intention to operate until 2025.
RAF Panavia Tornado GR4
At Operational Readiness
This Tornado GR4 at Operational Readiness photograph has been digitally re-mastered from a MOD picture, it therefore contains public sector information licensed under the Open Government Licence v2.0
|Tornado GR4 Armament: |
- Single 27 mm Mauser BK-27 cannon
- Four fuselage pylons and four swivelling under-wing pylons with a capacity of a maximum of 9000 kg (19,800 lb) of stores which may consist of -
- Auxillery fuel tanks
- ECM pods
- AIM-9 Sidewinder
- IRIS-T ASRAAM air-to-air self-defence missiles
- AIM-132 ASRAAM air-to-air self-defence missiles
- RAPTOR Reconnaissance pod
- Various air-to-ground non-guided or guided ordnance using the onboard TIALD laser designator
RAF Panavia Tornado GR4
in Landing Configuration
|The Tornado in action|
The Panavia Tornado saw action with the RAF, the Italian Air Force, and the Royal Saudi Air Force during the first Gulf War, since then RAF Tornados have also been used both in Afghanistan and Libya.
It is of note that the Tornado GR4 is currently operated from RAF Lossiemouth in Scotland, by the famed WW2 “Dambusters” 617 Squadron.
Tornado GR4 RAF
This Tornado GR4 RAF Strike Aircraft picture has been digitally re-mastered from a MOD picture, it therefore contains public sector information licensed under the Open Government Licence v2.0
RAF Tornado GR4 Multirole
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Panavia Tornado GR4 Bomber Plane Picture and Information