One of the latest articles on the excellent key.aero website suggests that any planned European tour by the Royal Austrailian Air Force F-111 could hinge on whether strategic transport is available.
Following a small fire on a Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) F-111C flying at the Singapore Air Show on February 4, the fleet has been temporarily grounded while checks are made on the other aircraft remaining in service, reports Australia’s ABC News.
During the display at Singapore on-board instrumentation indicated an engine fire, although nothing was visible to air traffic controllers. The aircraft landed safely but an inspection revealed some fire damage to one engine.
The F-111 is to be retired from the RAAF at the end of the year and only a handful is thought to be left airworthy. It is hoped that two aircraft will undertake a European tour this summer, but lack of strategic transport may defeat the plan.