Airborne Radar Collection



The museum has a unique collection of airborne radars designed and manufactured by Ferranti Edinburgh. Work is now proceeding on displaying these with at least one operating for demonstrations.

The Oldest radar is the AI23, 'Airpass', fitted to the Lightning interceptor and in RAF use for almost 20 years from the mid 1960s. This radar was the first airborne monopulse equipment, meaning that it could measure bearing and elevation from a single radar pulse. 

The design teams then developed the next in the Airpass series - ARI 5390 'Blue Parrot" which was fitted to the Buccaneer aircraft mainly for anti shipping use. 

The last radar in this series is the so called 'FLR' , Forward Looking Radar, which was developed for the TSR2 aircraft. The FLR is a terrain following radar that allowed the TSR2 to fly below 100 feet and automatically avoid obstructions. Visitors can watch film taken from a Buccaneer aircraft fitted with this radar demonstrating the success of the project.

An example of a Blue Fox radar is also on display.


To see some detailed photos of the AI23 on display at The National Museum of Flight click the link below.

AI23 Photo Gallery - this will open in a new page.

Blue Parrot

To read more about the development of this radar for the Buccaneer read the articles below, written by an APSS member and ex-Ferranti employee who worked on the development and support of this radar.

Ferranti and the Buccaneer S1 Weapon Delivery System

The Avionics Story: The Buccaneer S2, RN and RAF

For more information on the attack system of the Buccaneer read the following articles (note that some pages are missing)

Buccaneer Modes of Attack and accompanying System Information




Blue Fox



The APSS is a registered charity in Scotland, charity No. SC033307
A member of the British Aviation Preservation Council