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Jaguar Fleet

Volume 406: debated on Monday 9 June 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) if he will make a statement on the grounding of RAF Jaguars; [117503](2) what problems have been experienced with the Rolls Royce Adour Mk 106 engines fitted to the Jaguar fleet; and if he will make a statement. [117504]

On 8 May 2003, whilst operating from RAF Coltishall, a twin seat Jaguar T4 aircraft, powered by the Adour Mk 106 engine, made a precautionary landing due to a fire warning. The cause was found to be a technical problem that resulted in damage to the afterburner casing. As a result of this incident Jaguars fitted with the Adour Mk 106 engines did not fly until their engines had been inspected. These aircraft returned to normal flying on 24 May although some flying restrictions still apply pending a full engineering solution. Jaguar aircraft fitted with the Adour Mk 104 engines have no flying restrictions.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the cost is of the engine upgrade programme for the Jaguar fleet; and what improvements to the aircraft's performance have resulted in cases when the upgrade has been completed. [117505]

The cost of the Jaguar aircraft Adour Mk 106 engine upgrade programme is £105 million. The programme will reduce the through life costs of the aircraft propulsion system by increasing engine reliability and availability.In addition the upgraded Adour Mk 106 engine provides an increase in thrust over the current Mk 104 engine. This increase improves the operational effectiveness of the Jaguar aircraft particularly when deployed in hot climates.