TSR 2 -Supersonic Blast from my Past

TSR 2 Britains super fighter/bomber

Updated : Nov 16 2015

Newly released film – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o53u0X0Ik0w

 The only TSR-2 to fly, XR219 in anti-flash white finish, at BAC’s Warton factory in 1966

Links : http://www.thunder-and-lightnings.co.uk/tsr2/history.php

 In Flight  Film  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GXdJxjvQZW4


During the early ’60’s I worked at the Plessey  Research facility near Romsey then named Roke Manor. I was a lead mechanical designer working on a ECM package for this aircraft. It was to replace a similar functioning unit used in the V series bombers. The size of that unit was approx equal to two garbage cans. The unit for TSR 2 was to be minute in comparison. The finished size was 10″ in dia x 10″ long being super cooled with glycol. The microwave section was 1/8 ceramic triplanes and a new range of  miniature microwave connectors was designed to facilitate connections of the interior circuitry. I have learned that the unit was never installed and probably handed over to RAE at Farnborough.

In 1965 Harold Wilson and the Labour government of 1965  cancelled the entire aircraft project. In doing so crippled the British Aero industry. I was so disillusioned by the The UK’s failure to place significant value on those brilliant designers and engineers that I made plans to leave the UK. 1967 I emigrated to BC Canada to begin working a a designer for at the then new Western Star Truck Plant in Kelowna BC.

This work was covered by the British Official Secrets Act for the Next 25 years = Secret

Micro Wave coupler 5x full size
Development Bench tool – X band Phase Shifter

I goes without saying it is a near identical scenario the surrounded the all weather fighter the Avro Arrow here in Canada at around the same time.

I am sure some of this ECM developed went on to be used on later aircraft for the RAF but the momentum was lost.

For anyone with a desire to learn more – Damien Burke has published a very good book ” TSR 2  -Britains Lost Bomber ”  Although very well researched it denies that an ECM package was under developement for TSR2 which I know to be false ! Daimien has a copy of a letter from a senior RAF commander stating that there was to NO ECM package . I suspect ARE had other ideas which they kept under wraps .

Document – Noise Jammers denied – Our unit was a complete ECM package.

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