The Ministry of Defence has ordered 40 multi-role Typhoon fighter-bombers for the RAF in a deal estimated to be worth £3bn.

BAE Systems will assemble the jets at its existing production line at Warton in Lancashire. The effort will be supported by subcontractors across the UK, including Selex in Edinburgh who will supply radar systems.

EJ200 engines for the aircraft will be supplied by the Eurojet consortium. Consortium member Rolls-Royce is set receive a £300m share of the contract and will carry out its activities in Bristol, where engines for the RAF are assembled and tested.

The first of the new aircraft is expected to enter service with the Royal Air Force in 2013.

The new aircraft, capable of carrying a maximum payload of eight air-to-air weapons and up to six air-to-surface weapons, will be based at RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire and RAF Leuchars in Fife, Scotland.

The contracts for the 40 aircraft include 24 replacements for aircraft already on order for the RAF under contracts placed in 2004 - which were diverted to satisfy exports to Saudi Arabia - along with 16 additional aircraft.