Apr 17, 2014

Denmark Kicks Off Fighter Contest

Denmark has fired the starting pistol in its contest for a new fighter aircraft, sending out requests for information to four manufacturers sending Requests for Binding Information (RBI) to Boeing for the F/A-18F Super Hornet, to Eurofighter for the Typhoon, to Lockheed Martin for the F-35A and to Saab for the Gripen E, as the country looks to replace its fleet of F-16 Fighting Falcons. Dassault and its Rafale have not been invited.
Candidates are expected to return the information in July, with officials due to make a selection on the aircraft in mid-2015 based on the platform’s ability to be updated during its operational life, its operations and maintenance costs, and also a willingness by the companies to develop industrial relationships with Danish industry.
The new aircraft are likely to enter service between 2020-2024, by which time the Danish F-16s will be up to 45 years old.
Denmark is already a Level 3 signatory to the Joint Strike Fighter program, having signed up in 2002. Indeed, one of its F-16Bs is stationed at Edwards AFB, Calif., to support the aircraft’s flight test program. But being a signatory to the program does not oblige it to purchase the aircraft, and Danish industry has reportedly expressed disappointment about the amount of business won from the F-35 program.
Meanwhile, Boeing is planning to send the Super Hornet to the Royal Danish Air Force’s main airshow at Karup, Denmark on June 22.
Tony Osborne-aviationweek

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