Hobby Master 1-72 Air Power
HA6711 Tornado ECR "Operation Allied Force" 46+52, JBG 32,
Piacenza-San Damiano, Italy, 1999

The Panavia Tornado was a joint effort between the UK, West Germany and Italy to produce a two-seat, dual-engine aircraft with variable-sweep wings. The Tornado took its maiden flight on August 14, 1974 with the first aircraft being delivered to the German Air Force on July 27, 1979. There are three main variants of the Tornado, the IDS (interdictor/strike), ECR (electronic combat/reconnaissance) and ADV (air defense variant) interceptor. By the end of production in 1998 there had been 992 aircraft of all versions built of which 745 were IDS variants.

In early 1998 Serbian forces began to commit attacks against Albanians living in Kosovo and after much world-wide condemnation these action did not halt. As a result NATO began a response with air attacks on Serbian forces and equipment. This action was labeled “Operation Allied Force” and lasted from March 24, 1999 to June 10, 1999 when the Serbian leaders were forced to with draw and end the violence. The German AF was one of the NATO countries involved and one of their aircraft was Tornado ECR 46+52/JBG 32 flying from Piacenza-San Damiano, Italy.

Specifications for the Panavia Tornado ECR
ECR - Electronic Combat and Reconnaissance
Countries of origin – UK, Germany, Italy
Number produced – total 52, 35 for Germany
First entry into service – May 21, 1990
Crew – 2
Length – 16.72 m
Spread – 13.91 m
Swept – 8.6 m
Height – 5.95 m Weight
Empty – 13.9 t
Maximum takeoff – 28 t
2 X Turbo-Union RB.199Mk.103 turbofans
Dry with afterburning – 2 X 38.48 / 71.5 kN
Maximum speed – 2,236 km/h
Service ceiling – 15.2 km
Ferry range – 4,300 km
Combat radius – 1,390 km
Guns – 2 X 27 mm IWKA-Mauser cannons
Missiles – AGM-88 HARM anti-radiation
ECM pods, including jammers, chaff and flare dispensers, passive radar and ECCM equipment