Home:  Flying Equipment: BLUE PARROT AIRBORNE RADAR SYSTEM, 1962


View all Flying Equipment


First introduced experimentally into Buccaneer aircraft of flight Squadron 701Z in April 1959, the Ferranti 'Blue Parrot' airborne radar was in full service by 1962. Built to detect Russian heavy cruisers, which it did successfully, it was employed by the RAF who relied on its service for twenty six years.

Employed in Buccaneer aircraft for both the Falkland's and Gulf war, 'Blue Parrot' was kept in service for over 30 years, making it's last NATO exercise in the North sea in 1994. Unsophisticated by modern standards, 'Blue Parrot' made up for it in sheer power. It opened new horizons in the 1960's and nothing at the time could challenge it.

Picture bottom left, A= Visual display unit Type unknown. Bottom Right B= Drift Angle/ speed indicator, Type 101. C= Bottom Centre ADF Receiver, Type 2830. E= Top centre DF Loop Controller Type 384. F= Top right Receiver Controller Type 1274. Item E the Radar Interface Unit is not shown. Also shown two photographs of some of the units in a Buccaneer aircraft cockpit.

Donated by Marconi Museum

Your comments:

  • The item on the lower left hand side is an Indicator Azimuth and Range, part of the Blue Parrot ARI5930 and remained so with minor changes through the update of 5930/1 and /2. I was the last Design Authority for this Ferranti Radar System. The item was fitted toward the Port side of the Rear Cockpit.

    .......... Alex W Duncan, Newbattle, Midlothian UK, 15th of October 2012

  • I worked in the Blue Parrot Radar Bay at RAF Lossiemouth in the early 80's. The display in the bottom left of picture is the Blue Parrot Display. The display in the bottom right is the Blue Jacket Doppler system display. Not shown but was situated between the Nav's knees would be the Paveway Laser Designator display.
    .......... T McDonald, Forres, Moray, UK, 15th of September 2011

Add a memory or information about this object


2007 The Museum of Technology, The Great War and WWII
Company registered in England No. 7452160, Registered Charity No. 1140352, Accredited Museum No. 2221