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01 Apr 03. Oxley Avionics, the UK NVG lighting specialist, has won a key contract from the UK RAF to upgrade its fleet of Tornado aircraft with novel LED based visible and covert external lighting. The contract, won in the face of intense international competition, is worth close to £1m. The RAF has over two hundred Tornado aircraft of different variants, 141 GR4 and, 72 F3’s which will be fitted with the Oxley NVG Friendly exterior lighting suite. The contract requires kits to be supplied to the RAF for installation at base level.

Brian Thomson, International Sales Manager of Oxley Avionics said, “This contract marks a milestone in the development of NVG Friendly lighting systems. This award reinforces a trend towards specifying an LED solution rather than an optical filter system. Oxley has focused on developing fully JAA and FAA compliant solutions which require the highest standards of tolerance for a system which has to withstand wing tip temperatures in excess of 100 degrees centigrade when the aircraft is operating in combat conditions. Advances in technology have allowed us to use LEDs in the Aircraft environment. Embracing the MoD Smart Procurement Initiative, in design and component selection, we are providing the RAF with the latest solution in this rapidly evolving field”

Oxley has already supplied the RAF with interior cockpit conversions for its Tornado fleet five years ago. In addition, one hundred high intensity strobe kits were supplied to the RAF for installation at base level during the Kosovo conflict. Oxley NVG Friendly and covert exterior lighting systems are already installed on the USAF F16 fleet and the UK RAF Jaguar fleet.

Dr Tim Bushell, Technical Director of Oxley said, “We have worked closely with our customer, the RAF, to ensure that The UK Tornado fleet has the highest technology available for its complete NVG compatible lighting suite for both interior and exterior applications. The award of this contract adds a further dimension to our external lighting capability. Oxley has pioneered the concept, specification and supply of NVG Friendly external lighting over the years. It also ensures that the UK remains a world leader in this technology”

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