The Euro Typhoon Interoperability Project (ETIP) is an EAG activity which has been chaired by the EAG Permanent Staff since 2012. The activity includes biannual meetings and an annual live exercise named ‘VOLCANEX ETIP LIVEX’, aimed at developing close cooperation, interoperability and standardization at squadron level among the four European nations operating the Eurofighter Typhoon (Germany, Italy, Spain and UK).
The ETIP is orientated towards training and flight standardization activities, operational enhancements, logistical and maintenance initiatives, as well as the field of Flight Safety.
This latest meeting, hosted by the Air Combat Division HQ (Comando Forze da Combattimento) of the Italian Air Force in Milan from the 29th to 30th November 2017, was focused on sharing common findings on the Eurofighter Typhoon operations in the Baltic Air Policing theatre (BAP). Against this backdrop there was continued emphasis on the development of the ETIP Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) and also defining the commitment and agreeing the initial details for a VOLCANEX ETIP LIVEX that is being planned for 2018. In addition, the meeting provided a unique opportunity to exchange national views on training, operational experience, Flight Safety and maintenance/logistic topics.
Over the two days of the meeting, pilots and engineers briefed their colleagues on their experiences in the BAP theatre and worked closely to discuss the progress of the ETIP SOPs and the achievement of the Airspace Ground Equipment (AGE) “Compatibility Matrix“ certification from their respective national Military Airworthiness Agency (MAWA). This development now allows the member nations to share and use some specific national equipment, which can therefore potentially improve interoperability and effectiveness of the Eurofighter Typhoon fleet in Europe.
The next significant event will be an ETIP meeting in the 1st quarter of 2018 in the UK, where the VOLCANEX ETIP LIVEX 18 Main Planning Conference will be held. The VOLCANEX will look to exercise and validate interoperability solutions, with an operational focus on the Baltic Air Policing scenario. On the maintenance side, the exercise will aim to further expand familiarization with other nations´ Aircraft Ground Equipment (AGE), cross-servicing and turnaround procedures.