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Author Kev Darling suggests that decreasing British overseas defence commitments had led to those aircraft instead being prematurely withdrawn.

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A Lightning was tasked with shooting down a pilot-less Harrier over West Germany in The pilot had abandoned the Harrier which continued flying towards the East German border. It was shot down to avoid a diplomatic incident. During the s, as strategic awareness increased and a multitude of alternative fighter designs were developed by Warsaw Pact and NATO members, the Lightning's range and firepower shortcomings became increasingly apparent.

The Tornado featured several advantages over the Lightning, including a far larger weapons load and considerably more advanced avionics. In their final years the airframes required considerable maintenance to keep them airworthy due to the sheer number of accumulated flight hours. On 21 December , Saudi Arabia , keen to improve its air defences owing to the Saudi involvement in the North Yemen Civil War and the resultant air incursions into Saudi airspace by Egyptian forces supporting the Yemeni Republicans, placed a series of orders with Britain and the US to build a new integrated air defence system.

BAC received orders for 34 multirole single-seat Lightning F. To provide an urgent counter to air incursions, with Saudi towns near the border being bombed by Egyptian aircraft, an additional interim contract, called "Magic Carpet", was placed in March for the supply of six ex-RAF Lightnings four F. One lost in an accident was later replaced May The Lightnings and Hunters, flown by mercenary pilots, were deployed to Khamis Mushait airfield near the Yemeni border, resulting in the curtailing of operations by the Egyptian Air Force over the Yemeni-Saudi border.


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Kuwait ordered 14 Lightnings in December , comprising 12 F. The first Kuwait aircraft, a T. Saudi Arabia officially received F.

Two Lightnings, a F. One F. Kuwait's Lightnings did not have a long service career. After an unsuccessful attempt by the regime to sell them to Egypt in , they were replaced its last Lightnings with Dassault Mirage F1s in A Lightning T. Performance [].


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    Not to be confused with Lockheed P Lightning. Suddenly the telephone would ring and it would be one of the radar controllers from around the UK ordering you to scramble immediately. And so you would run to the aeroplane, jump in. They [Soviet aircraft] were just monitoring, listening, recording everything that went on. So you would get up alongside and normally they would wave, quite often there would be a little white face at every window. They knew we were there just to watch them. One I intercepted when he violated the airspace and I was trying to get him to land but it was scary.

    He just wanted to get out of there, he was out of Dodge as fast as he could go, he didn't want to mix it with me. Main article: English Electric Lightning in fiction. Aviation portal. Below the tropopause , the true airspeed associated with a given Mach number decreases with altitude. The Lightning's Air Data System automatically corrected for errors in position and speed. Red Top limit was Mach 1. Prior testing had determined that the aircraft had the excess thrust to achieve this speed, given the right atmospheric conditions of a high tropopause and lower-than-standard temperature.

    The test flight was to check for inlet stability and monitor temperatures at higher Mach. The basic weight, without these items, is 27, lb. At weights above 45, lb, the mainwheel tyres have to be changed after one use. It then has 15 minutes on station to complete the intercept or identification task before returning to base. The afterburners are not used during this profile, and the total mission time is min. A 2g level turn allows a rear-quarter re-attack 1. Following a best-range cruise and descent, the Lightning enters the landing pattern with lb of fuel remaining with a total mission time of 35 min.

    The listed value represents an F. In addition to the Lightning, last line-of-defence for the airfields was to be what became the Bristol Bloodhound guided missile.

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    Roland Beamont later called for the Lightning's fuel capacity to be greatly increased, which it was. Lancashire Evening Post , Retrieved: 23 January Air-Britain Aeromilitaria. Manned Space: From Mercury to the Shuttle. Forge Books. Retrieved: 23 January Classic Aircraft , Volume 45, Number 8. The Lightning Association. October Retrieved: 22 April Archived 13 January at the Wayback Machine thunder-and-lightnings. Retrieved: 12 March Testing Early Jets. London: Airlife, When Britain Ruled the Skies — 1. Military Marvels".

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    British Broadcasting Corporation. Air International. Key Publishing. Thunder and Lightnings.

    English Electric Lightning - Wikipedia

    Retrieved 12 June Retrieved: 7 October Air International , January , Vol. Air International , February , Vol.

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    Royal Air Force Museum Cosford. Retrieved 21 April Museum of Science and Industry. Norfolk and Suffolk Aviation Museum. National Museums Scotland. Retrieved 18 January Newark Air Museum. Beamont, Roland English Electric P1 Lightning. Littlehampton Book Services Ltd. Beamont, Roland. Flying to the Limit. Bowman, Martin W. English Electric Lightning. Buttler, Tony. Hinckley, UK: Midland Publishing, Darling, Kev.