These are the French Mirage 2000-9 fighters that Morocco will receive from Abu Dhabi

The Dassault Mirage 2000 is a fourth-generation, multi-purpose, single-engine jet fighter of the Mirage family, manufactured by the French company Dassault Aviation, the same company that currently manufactures Rafales for the French Air Force and other countries. It was designed in the late 1970s, as a light fighter based on the Mirage III. It entered service in 1984, being the last model of the successful Mirage series to enter service, although it is no longer manufactured after being replaced by the more modern Rafale by Dassault Avation.

The Mirage 2000 evolved into a successful multi-role aircraft with many variants developed, including the Mirage 2000N and 2000D attack versions (nuclear and conventional), the improved Mirage 2000-5 version and several later export versions, such as the one that sold to Abu Dhabi and which will now be transferred to Morocco.​ With more than 600 aircraft built until 2007, it is in service in nine countries.

The development of this small plane would give the Dassault company a competitor against the new American F-16 Fighting Falcon light single-engine multipurpose fighter, which had defeated the Dassault Mirage F1 fighter in an international competition, for the purchase of a new device for the air forces of Europe and NATO, Belgium, Denmark, Holland and Norway.

This aircraft was the first combat aircraft created in Europe with FBW (Fly-by-wire) electronic flight controls and its delta wing had advanced control surfaces. Using the delta-wing interceptor concept seen on the Dassault Mirage III, the French company built a new jet fighter design. This wing configuration is not ideal to provide great maneuverability, stability in flight at low altitude, short takeoff and landing distances, but it has qualities that allow it to have advantages in high speed flight, it offers simplicity of construction, resistance, reduced radar signature and a large internal volume.

The Mirage 2000 is a modern, single-engine multi-role fighter aircraft, it can attack in combat missions like a bomber aircraft, and defend like a fighter jet against other fighter aircraft at high speed, altitude and better maneuverability. It is a completely new aircraft but retains the traditional delta wing look used on the venerable Mirage III air superiority fighter. In itself, the design is not very innovative, but a reliable model was chosen that was tested and used by many countries for years and in many conflicts with excellent results.

This delta wing design was approved for mass construction, rather than risk building a new swept wing design like the traditional Mirage F1 fighter, and the new Lockheed Martin F-16 Fighting Falcon multirole fighter, which was to enter to compete in the international market for combat aircraft, a design that they did not know and would need many years of flight tests and development, until they were able to demonstrate the success of the new design and be able to offer it for sale to other countries.

The Mirage 2000 incorporates a new, more powerful and improved, low bypass turbofan engine SNECMA M53-5 or SNECMA M53-P2, Depending on the aircraft version, it provides respectively 54 or 64.7 kN of normal thrust and 86.3 or 95.1 kN with afterburner.

The first test flights of the new Mirage 2000 with this new engine were carried out from March 1978 with the M53-5 version, until its entry into series production in the 1980s. to equip the French Air Force, and offer other countries a multipurpose fighter, it can attack and defend on the same platform, which some more modern versions of the Mirage F-1 fighter, the Mirage III and the Mirage 50, already operated since the 1970s.

The internal fuel capacity increases due to a new configuration in the main landing gear, it is 3,978 liters in the Mirage 2000C and E with a single-seat cabin, and 3,904 liters in the Mirage 2000B, N, D and S with a two-seat cabin, which which increases your combat range in attack missions.

The avionics of the Mirage-2000B/C include the SAGEM ULISS 52 inertial navigation system (INS), TRT radio altimeter, Dassault Electronique Type 2084 central digital computer, Digibus data bus and Sextant Avionique Type 90 air data computer. Communications includes LMT NRAI-7A IFF transponder, IO-300-A radio beacon receiver, TRT ERA 7000 V/UHF com transceiver, TRT ERA 7200 UHF secure voice communications or EAS.

The Thomson-CSF RDM (multimode radar) or Dassault Electronique/Thomson-CSF RDI (pulse Doppler radar) radars, equipped on the Mirage 2000C/D, have an operating range of 100 km. Its effective range is around 60–70 km with modest capabilities against low-level targets. They are linked to the Super R.530F missiles, and were fitted on the first 37 aircraft delivered to the French Air Force and on most export models. It is equipped with the Thales Serval radar warning receiver (RWR) with antennas on the wingtips and on the upper rear part of the vertical stabilizer. It is also equipped with the Dassault Saber radio frequency jammer in a container located below the vertical stabilizer with its antenna in a fairing in front of it. The Dassault Éclair chaff and flare dispensing system located under the tail was finally replaced by a pair of Matra Spirale automatic dispensers, each located under the rear of the extension of each of the wing inserts, with a total capacity of 224 cartridges.

The pilot operates the aircraft primarily by means of a central control stick, computer-controlled flight, and fly-by-wire cables, making it a fourth generation jet fighter aircraft and an engine throttle lever on the left sideboth with HOTAS controls (“hands on throttle and control lever”).

The pilot is seated in a zero-zero type SEMMB Mk10 ejection seat. in a conventional position without backward tilt and higher than in the Mirage III. The cockpit is very small and its cover is not bubble-shaped, despite this, its visibility is quite good, but it is less than the complete bubble type of the F-16 for example.

The instrument panel (in the Mirage 2000C version) is very modern, highlighting the Sextant VE-130 head-up display (HUD), which presents data related to flight control, navigation, target location and weapons firing at the same time. height of the pilot's line of sight, and the new VMC-180 radar display, located in the center of the panel just below the HUD.

The Mirage 2000 has two integrated DEFA 554 revolver-type automatic cannons (now known as GIAT 30-550 F4) of 30 mm caliber with 125 projectiles each., in the lower part of the central fuselage, under the air intake nozzles to the engines. It can also carry up to 6.3 tons (7 tons in the -9 version) of external load in a total of nine supports – two pylons on each wing and five under the fuselage, to transport short-range and medium-range missiles, and launch bombs. guided missiles and the Exocet naval missile, operating as a land-based naval bomber.

As external weapons it can include the Matra Super 530 radar-guided medium-range air-to-air missile on the internal pylons under the wings and on the supports under the fuselage, and the Matra Magic infrared-guided short-range air-to-air missile on the outer wing pylons, They can also be carried under the central fuselage, depending on the type of combat mission assigned, as an escort and a pure fighter.

Other short-range missiles such as the American AIM-9J/L/P Sidewinder are compatible and they are usually used in Mirages that have been exported, because the Magic missile itself was created compatible with the Sidewinder.

The Mirage 2000C and later versions can carry as a short to medium range air-to-air missile the most advanced MBDA MICA, in its IR (infrared guided) and EM (active radar guided) versions instead of the previous ones.

Of the many versions that have been manufactured of this fighter, the one that was sold to Abu Dhabi and that will now reach the Moroccan Air Force is the Mirage 2000-9, the export version of the Mirage 2000-5 Mk. The United Arab Emirates was the launch customer with the purchase of 32 newly built aircraft, of which 20 are Mirage 2000-9 single-seaters and 12 Mirage 2000-9D two-seaters. The first deliveries of these devices began in the spring of 2003. Additionally, 30 of the Mirage 2000s that Abu Dhabi already had were updated to the Mirage 2000-9 standard.

UAE Mirage 2000-9 fully equipped for ground attack mission by having the Shehab laser designator container (a variant of the Damocles) and the Nahar navigation container as a complement to the air-ground modes of the RDY-2 radar (15% additional range with respect to the RDY). They are also equipped with a classified countermeasures system called “IMEWS”, which is comparable to ICMS. United Arab Emirates is also getting the “Black Shaheen” cruise missile, which is basically a variant of the MBDA Apache, similar to the MBDA Storm Shadow and the AS-30 land attack missile.

Many of these Emirati fighters have participated in various conflicts. Thus, they intervened in the military intervention in Libya in 2011, in Saudi Arabia's intervention in Yemen and in the war against the Islamic State. In Yemen, some aircraft were lost during attack missions. Emirates deployed Mirage 20000 fighter jets to Eritrea to support its military operation in Yemen. In 2020 a United Arab Emirates Air Force (UAEAF) Mirage 2000-9 detachment was based at Sidi Barrani Air Base in Egypt to support operations in Libya.

On July 5, the Emirati Mirage 2000 bombed the Al-Watiya air base in Libya, damaging and destroying the Turkish MIM-23 Hawk radars and missiles located there. Türkiye had deployed F-16 aircraft, Bayraktar TB2 and Anka-S drones at that base. The airstrikes also caused damage to the al-Watiya base, Turkish headquarters since May 2020.