Since 2019, the Italian Eurofighter aircraft have performed more than 850 missions which took them to recon more than 19,000 points of interest.
The Task Group Typhoon, part of the Italian National Contingent Command Air – Kuwait, recently achieved the milestone of 7,000 flight hours flown in support of Operation Inherent Resolve. The unit, which operates four F-2000A Typhoon fighter jets, is deployed in Kuwait at Alì Al Salem Air Base as part of “Prima Parthica”, the Italian contribution to the multinational campaign against Daesh in Iraq and Syria.
Since they were first deployed to Kuwait in 2019, the Typhoons performed more than 850 missions, which led them to recon more than 19,000 points of interest and to perform about 3,000 air-to-air refueling operations. The main tasks of the unit are the Tactical Reconnaissance (TACRECCE), performed with the Rafael RecceLite II pod, and the Defensive Counter Air (DCA).
The Rafael Reccelite reconnaissance pod, integrated on the Typhoon since 2015, is the Italian Air Force’s tactical pod of choice to carry out ISR missions: the it is a Day/Night electro-optical pod able to provide real-time imagery collection. It is made of a stabilized turret, solid-state on board recorder that provides image collections in all directions, from high, medium and low altitudes. The Reccelite reconnaissance pod is used to broadcast live video imagery via datalink to ground stations and to ROVER (Remote Operations Video Enhanced Receiver) tactical receivers in a range of about 100 miles.
While deployed, the Typhoons were also involved in tactical air-to-air and air-to-ground training missions, with more than 70 Close Air Support and range training missions in cooperation with Tactical Air Control Party units of the U.S. Air Force and AH-64 Apache attack helicopters of the U.S. Army deployed to Camp Buehring, according to the press release. UH-60Black Hawks were also seen training with the Typhoons, like in the video below.
The achievement of the 7,000 flight hours mark comes just six months after the unit achieved the 6,000 flight hours mark. Comparing the data provided by the Italian Ministry of Defence in both occasions, it is possible to see the high tempo of the operations during the deployment: 100 missions, reconnaissance over 3,000 points of interest, 600 air-to-air refueling operations and 20 CAS and range training missions in cooperation with US units and assets.
Along with the Typhoons, the TFA-K (Task Force Air-Kuwait) supports in theater operations of the KC-767A transport and tanker aircraft (Task Group Breus), as well as the Predator drones (Task Group Araba Fenice) that carry out ISR (Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance) tasks, C-27J (Task Group Albatros) and C-130J (Task Group Medal) cargo aircraft.
All Typhoon units of the Italian Air Force provide personnel and aircraft to Task Group Typhoon, with periodic rotations. Imagery collected by the Italian assets are processed and fused by the I2MEC (Integrated Italian Multisensor Exploitation Cell) and then passed on to the higher commands of the multinational coalition.