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Staff

Mr. Donohoe: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will list for his Department (a) how many people in total are employed, (b) how many of the total number of staff are (i) male and (ii) female and (c) how many (I) men and (II) women are employed on a (1) full-time and (2) part-time basis. [9489]

Mr. Arbuthnot: The information requested in respect of my Department and its agencies, as at 1 November 1996, is set out.

TotalMaleFemale
Full/Part time115,68379,59336,090
Full time110,64979,12131,528
Part time5,0344724,562

Both permanent and casual UK based staff are included. The information is in the form of a headcount, i.e. both full and part-time personnel count as one.


Training Airspace

Mr. Redmond: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what changes in air defence training airspace requirements will occur as a result of the introduction of the Eurofighter 2000; what factors underlie these changes; and what plans he has for changes in airspace structure to accommodate such changes. [9838]

Mr. Soames: Work is under way to identify the training airspace requirements for Eurofighter.

Mr. Redmond: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what was the briefed western boundary of the airspace in use over northern England and southern Scotland on 17 November 1995 for mutual air combat training by RAF Tornados and Dutch air force F16 aircraft operating from RAF Leeming. [9841]

Mr. Soames: The briefed western boundary of the airspace used by RAF Tornado and Royal Netherlands Air Force F16 aircraft for mutual air combat training on 17 November 1995 was a line from 55 degrees 59 minutes north, 2 degrees 50 minutes west to 55 degrees 3 minutes north, 2 degrees 12 minutes west.

Mr. Redmond: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what plans he has to exclude advisory route airspace from military exercises. [9840]

Mr. Soames: There are no plans to exclude advisory route airspace from military exercises.

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Scheduled Exercises (Purple Series)

Mr. Redmond: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will list the dates and locations of scheduled exercises in the Purple series in the next 12 months. [9873]

Mr. Soames: The next exercise in the Purple series is programmed for October 1997 and has been designated Purple LINK. It will be a computer-assisted exercise based in the United Kingdom and will be undertaken with the Americans. This is the only Purple exercise planned for 1997.

Air Combat Manoeuvring Instrumentation

Mr. Redmond: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what plans he has to acquire air combat manoeuvring instrumentation equipment for the Royal Air Force which can be used without ground relay facilities. [9834]

Mr. Arbuthnot: We are planning to issue an invitation to tender for the rangeless airborne instrumented debriefing system in the near future. If a limited trial programme proves successful, we plan to procure RAIDS for the entire fast jet fleet by around the turn of the century.

AWACS Controllers

Mr. Redmond: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what plans he has to permit airborne warning and communication system controllers to co-ordinate traffic under their control directly with (a) ground-based military air traffic controllers and (b) ground-based civil air traffic controllers. [9877]

Mr. Soames: There are currently no plans to permit AWACS controllers to co-ordinate traffic under their control directly with ground-based military or civil air traffic controllers.

Mr. Redmond: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence in what circumstances controllers in AWACS aircraft are permitted to provide a radar service to aircraft under their control using a radar picture generated by a ground-based radar; and what plans he has to change these rules. [9875]

Mr. Soames: Controllers in AWACS aircraft are not permitted to provide a radar service to aircraft under their control using a radar picture generated by a ground-based radar. There are currently no plans to change this.

Air Traffic Control

Mr. Redmond: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will list those civil air traffic control radars which supply data directly to the UK air defence ground environment; and what plans he has for additional civil radars to be so linked. [9839]

Mr. Soames: The civil air traffic control radars which supply data to the UK air defence ground environment are Burrington, Pease Pottage, Debden, Claxby, Clee Hill and Great Dun Fell. Additional radars which can be linked as required are Perwinnes Hill, Tiree, Stornoway and Sumburgh.

Mr. Redmond: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence under what circumstances United Kingdom air

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defence ground environment controllers are permitted to provide a radar service to aircraft under their control using a radar picture generated by an airborne warning and communications system aircraft; and what plans he has to change these rules. [9876]

Mr. Soames: UK air defence ground environment controllers are not permitted to provide a radar service to aircraft under their control using a radar picture by AWACS aircraft. There are currently no plans to change this.

Mr. Redmond: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence under what circumstances UK air defence ground environment controllers are permitted to provide a radar service to aircraft under their control using a radar picture generated by more than one ground-based radar; and what plans he has for changes to these rules. [9836]

Mr. Soames: UK air defence ground environment controllers provide a radar service to aircraft under their control with a single radar selected and are not permitted to provide such a service using more than one ground-based radar. There are currently no plans to change this.

Radiation Experiments

Mr. Matthew Taylor: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) what follow-up tests his Department has conducted on the long-term effects of radiation experiments on volunteers at (a) Harwell and (b) Porton Down; [10206]

Mr. Soames: It is important to draw a distinction between studies involving minimal amounts of radioactive material used as a tracer and so-called radiation experiments in which individuals are exposed to high doses of radiation in order to assess the damage produced. All studies carried out by my Department, including those carried out on volunteers attending Porton Down, were in the former category. Consequently, no follow-up action was deemed necessary by Porton Down. Consent forms were not in use in the 1950s/early 1960s when the studies involving radio-labelled tracers were conducted at Porton Down.

Matters relating to Harwell are the responsibility of my right hon. Friend the President of the Board of Trade.

Mr. Taylor: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will place in the Library copies of the guidelines issued by his Department to (a) the Harwell medical ethics committee regarding radiation experiments on humans and (b) the Committee for the Safety of Human Experiments, the medical sub-committee of the Defence Scientific Advisory Council, and the independent ethics committee regarding radiation experiments on humans at Porton Down. [10209]

Mr. Soames: All studies involving volunteers at Porton Down are governed by the principles for ethical control of human experiments as stated in the Nuremburg code, the Helsinki declaration and the guidelines of the Royal College of Physicians. My Department does not issue guidelines to the independent ethics committee of experts who oversee the volunteer programme at Porton Down.

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Porton Down has not carried out any radiation experiments on humans. Work carried out in the 1950s and early 1960s involved the use of radio-labelled tracer materials in decontamination and medical evaluations and was subject to the normal ethical controls.

Matters relating to Harwell are the responsibility of my right hon. Friend the President of the Board of Trade.

Low Flying

Mr. Redmond: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what information is made available to civil operators concerning the activity status of low-level overland training areas. [9874]

Mr. Soames: I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave him on 8 February 1996, Official Report, columns 356-57.

Tornado F3

Mr. Redmond: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what is the capability of the identification friend or foe system in the Tornado F3 aircraft to receive the secondary surveillance radar codes of civil aircraft. [9879]

Mr. Soames: The Tornado F3 is able to receive secondary surveillance codes of civil aircraft, provided it has been notified of the civil aircraft's code number. In common with other military aircraft and our allies, civil aircraft are located chiefly through use of the F3's primary radar and visual identification. These techniques augment procedural separations enforced by air traffic authorities.


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