Typhoon jets from RAF Lossiemouth have been scrambled for the second time in just four days.
A Russian aircraft was detected approaching UK airspace over the North Sea today.
The mission came just days after two Russian anti-submarine aircraft were intercepted and shadowed on Friday.
Typhoons took off from RAF Lossiemouth shortly before noon while a Voyager aircraft from RAF Brize Norton is also supporting the operation.
It is understood that the aircraft headed north-east of Shetland and then headed south.
A RAF spokesman said: “Quick Reaction Alert Typhoon fighters based at RAF Lossiemouth were launched today against a Russian aircraft approaching the UK area of interest, however, the aircraft turned away and no intercept was required.”
Crews shadowed the planes, which were initially unidentified, as they moved through the UK’s area of interest.
What is Quick Reaction Alert?
The Quick Reaction Alert (QRA) operation is one of the most critical run from RAF Lossiemouth.
It requires Typhoon jets and crews to constantly be ready to respond to potential threats approaching the northern part of the UK.
Personnel at RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire perform QRA missions in the south.
There were 14 scrambles from RAF Lossiemouth in 2020.
The operation regularly involves jets being called to respond to Russian aircraft approaching the UK.
However, the RAF responds to any unknown aircraft in the country’s area of interest.
In 2020, 11 of the 14 scrambles were in response to Russian aircraft.
QRA operations are launched to intercept unidentified aircraft not communicating with air traffic control, that has not filed a flight plan or is transmitting a recognisable radar code.
Aircraft moving through UK airspace while not complying with regulations can pose a danger to other planes in the area.