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Spanish and German Eurofighters complete the combined quick reaction alert operation

Amari, Estonia
September 13, 2022
  • The Spanish participation in the NATO Baltic Air Policing mission in Estonia ends

Spanish Eurofighters handed over joint responsibility for the QRA (Quick Reaction Alert) operations in the Baltic Air Policing (BAP) mission to German Eurofighters, which from now on assume it exclusively from the Ämari Air Base (Estonia).

On August the 25th, the 4 Spanish Eurofighters deployed in Estonia under operational control of the Operations Command and joined the German Eurofighters. They assumed the tasks of surveillance and control of the Alliance's airspace, intercepting and identifying aircraft that did not meet the identification requirements necessary for air traffic control systems. Since then, until September the 12th, they carried out 28 missions, with a total of 116 flight hours, and two interceptions, of unidentified aircraft. Alpha Scramble.

In addition, since September the 4th, for the first time in the NATO BAP mission, the Spanish Eurofighters carried out quick reaction alert operations in combination with the German fighters. Simultaneously, planes and crews from both countries were on 24-hour alert at the Ämari Air Base, guaranteeing the integrity and security of allied airspace.

These joint alert services led to several successes as a result of teamwork and due to the interoperability of advanced weapons systems: shared maintenance reduced the logistics footprint, deploying 65% less volume of material than would have been necessary for this type of operation. In addition, twice the joint operability of the Eurofighters was generated than would have been obtained with the same means if both countries had worked separately, expanding the response capacity in the event of any possible violation of NATO airspace.

It is the first time that Spanish Eurofighters on an Air Policing mission in the Baltic are configured with weapons from another allied country, Germany’s, by both countries’ combined teams, within the framework of the interoperability project for allied advanced weapon systems material.