cal headings to insure system’s enhanced
range. Another important system is IRLS
(Infra-Red Line Scanner) which provides the
thermo-visual, across the horizon image of
the area being monitored. The scanner itself
is installed in the cover located under the
fuselage behind the front landing gear leg.
Through a digital port
the information from both systems can be
displayed on the WSO (Weapon Systems
Officer) screen in the rear cockpit overlapping each other creating the complete
image of the combat situation in the form of
the electronic map. This information can also
be displayed on the pilot’s monitor. There is
a FLIR (Forward-looking Infrared) sensor
located on the starboard of the forward
wheel well which purpose is the visual
terrain scanning and targets’ identification.
The sensor can rotate 180 degrees and its
range is approximately 20 kilometers. The
image can be projected on the pilot’s HUD for
better navigation at night or on the displays
in both pilots’ cockpits. The last system is the
data interface ODIN (Operational Data Interface) which can in real time relay the data
from ELS and IRLS systems to other aircraft
or ground units. IRLS container, together
with its electronic blocks was removed from
many Tornadoes ECR and for current reconnaissance missions the removable RecceLite container, made by Israeli company
Rafael is used.
Lutwaffe has used this container since 2009.
The aforementioned systems are installed in
the fuselage so now let's proceed to the suspended equipment and ordnance. Two removable containers can be seen on Tornadoes
ECR, the active radar jammer CERBERUS
and passive radar and infrared jammer
BOZ-101 or 104. The IDS version is capable
of carrying these as well which is often the
Jammer CERBERUS/TSPJ (Tornado Self
Protection Jammer) is a defense system
designed to jam the enemy’ communication
and radar means. It can be activated by an
operator or automatically by a radar warning receiver signal. Usually, it is attached
under the port wing. Interesting fact is that
it was developed with the secret contribution of the Israeli industry. When in the mid-1980s this information leaked to the public it
caused rather big political scandal.
System BOZ-101 or BOZ-104 is a passive container featuring the chaff flares dispensers
against IR or radar-guided anti-aircraft missiles. It is typically attached under the starboard wing.
The principal Tornado ECR weapon is AGM88 HARM anti-radar missile. Maximum of
four can be carried. Typically, only two are
attached under the fuselage but two more
can be hoisted on the wing inner hard points. The capability of carrying four AGM-88
missiles was frequently utilized during the
missions over the former Yugoslavia. Before
the missile is launched it receives the target coordinates from its aircraft and utilizes
German Tornado ECR reg. 46+36 (cn 851/GS269/4336) takes off from Rostock Laage (RLG/ETNL, 23 Aug 2014).
(photo: Petr Soukop)
them during the initial flight stage. In the final
stage of guidance the missile utilizes its own
active or passive radar system.
For its own defense the aircraft can be equipped with two AIM-9L Sidewinder missiles.
The Luftwaffe Tornadoes can be equipped
with 1000 liters drop tanks to increase their
range. From the production Tornadoes ECR
had the capability to deploy the AGM-65D
Maverick anti-ground missiles but this load
out has never been recorded in the course of
the service with Luftwaffe.
The first combat deployment of the German
Tornadoes ECR took place in 1995. It was
even the very first German army deployment
since the end of WWII. The “honor” fell on
JaBoG 32 from Lechfeld when it was from
August 1995, within EG (EinsatzGeschwader)
1, or Operational Wing 1, deployed with eight
aircraft in the first tour of duty out of the Ita-
lian air base Piazenza in the operation Deliberate Force over Bosnia and Herzegovina
The Tornadoes mission was the reconnaissance and silencing of the enemy anti-aircraft defense. The operation was executed under the NATO and UN command to
protect UNPROFOR units and inhabitants of
the UN-controlled territory. The operation
commenced on August 30, 1995 and lasted
until September 20, 1995. After that EG 1 was
commissioned to support the IFOR mission
(1995-1996), then SFOR (1996-2001) and finally, in 2001 the operations of the German
Tornadoes at Piacenza air base ceased. During this period of time, in 1999 the Tornadoes also participated in the operation Allied
Force. Between March 24 and June 10 this
operation was conducted under the NATO
command against the former Republic of Yugoslavia during the war in Kosovo.
Again, the German Tornados flew reconnaissance, allied aircraft escort protection and
INFO Eduard - FEBRUARY 2022