The Qatari Air Force took delivery of its first Eurofigher Typhoon fighter jet in a ceremony held on Monday at BAE Systems’ facility in Warton, UK.
The new fighter jet is part of an order for 24 aircraft placed in 2017, but the details of which are unclear. It is estimated that 18 of them will be single-seaters and the others, with two seats.
According to BAe, the fighter, designation QA404, will be sent to Qatar by the end of the month “where it will provide critical support for the FIFA World Cup, which will be held in the state from 21 November.”
The biggest football event in the world will take place for the first time in the Middle East and has been moved to the end of the year, when temperatures in Qatar are a little milder – normally the tournament takes place between June and July.
The Typhoon deal also includes nine Hawk Mk 167 trainer aircraft, among other items.
The Qatari Eurofighters will be equipped with Meteor air-to-air missiles in addition to precision-guided munitions – the radar is of the AESA type, the ECSR Mk 0. The Qatari fighters also have a differential, an antenna installed on the vertical stabilizer, but whose function is not was revealed.
The Qatari Air Force has a diverse fleet, which includes the former Mirage 2000 as well as the Rafale, both from Dassault. The nation is also receiving F-15QA fighter jets, part of an order for 32 aircraft with Boeing.