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Pilots and other personnel from the Brazilian Air Force (FAB) have participated in several operational exchange programmes so far to get an understanding of Gripen operations. For example, at a recent visit to Hungary, Major-Brigadier Jefson Borges learned about the latest Saab offerings for Gripen and interacted with Gripen operators as they shared their experiences of working in a combat environment from a tactical and logistical viewpoint.

Before that, Brazilian pilots attended the Lion Effort Exercise 2018 in October. Lion Effort was a great opportunity to see multiple Gripen operators train together, performing air-to-air and air-to-ground missions using BVR and Infrared missiles.

Currently, two FAB officials are travelling to Thailand for a three month training programme where they will understand in detail, the operational challenges, and get a brief on logistics, and support systems as well.

"The learning curve is very huge. In a short span of time, FAB has to be able to adapt to the new systems and use them for different mission scenarios," says Col. Aviador Ricardo Guerra Rezende, President of the Fox Group which is dedicated to the operational management of the Brazilian Gripen programme.

Read the full story here.

Image Source: FAB

It is critical that the person in the cockpit has full confidence in the capabilities of the aircraft. So the opinion of the FAB pilots about Gripen is extremely relevant! 

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Last month, Saab successfully completed a test flight by a Gripen E aircraft with the Meteor Beyond Visual Range Air-to-Air Missile (BVRAAM) for the first time.  

The flight included two Meteor missiles and the Gripen E aircraft (designated 39-8) was operated from Saab’s airfield at Linköping, Sweden.

“The aircraft continues to perform as smoothly as we have seen throughout the whole flight test phase flying with external stores. I’m really looking forward to the upcoming steps in the flight test programme, taking us closer and closer to completing weapon integration. Meteor makes Gripen E extremely capable in the air dominance role”, says Robin Nordlander, Gripen experimental test pilot, Saab.

Read the full story here.

Gripen E has successfully completed the first tests to verify the ability to release and launch external payloads. Watch the video.​

 

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When it comes to efficient development, Gripen E leads by examples. From model based development to segregated avionics, several prcendents have been set. And now, in an effort to make the Gripen E development even more fficient, Saab, the Swedish Armed Forces, and the Swedish Defence Material Administration (FMV) re now carrying out joint validation and verification of the combat aircraft system.

In the development of earlier versions of Gripen, validation and verification was generally carried out consecutively. To perform joint verification in which the three parties participate from the outset results in greater sophistication and efficiency in operations. The number of repeat tests is reduced and any measures that need to be implemented are recognised earlier.

- I am very happy over the enhanced co-operation between Saab, FMV and the Swedish Armed Forces. I believe this is the key to success and for delivery in time and in line with what is agreed with the customer. We will continue to develop and strengthen our co-operation for further efficiency in the programme, says Jonas Hjelm, head of Saab business area Aeronautics.

Sweden's most important industrial project?

"Joint testing affords us an opportunity to collaborate with industry at an even earlier stage of development. This reduces the risk of late and expensive reworking in the development programme. Moreover, this is perhaps Sweden's largest and most important industrial project, and it's at the cutting-edge of technology. And for this reason it is, of course, also very exciting ...

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The first Gripen E test aircraft, 39-8 jettisoned one external fuel drop tank and fired an IRIS-T air-to-air missile this month at Vidsel Test Range in the north of Sweden.

These tests are the latest steps in the Gripen E flight test programme preceded by the carriage trials in July and form part of the weapon integration work.

“As a pilot, flying with external stores such as drop tank and missiles is important to allow for evaluation of how the aircraft behaves with the stores attached. This test was also used to evaluate the effect of releasing and launching the stores on the aircraft. The highlight was of course to pull the trigger and watch the missile fire away. It also brings us closer to making the aircraft ready for its operational use”, says Marcus Wandt, Experimental Gripen Test Pilot at Saab.

Gripen E's first prototype flew its debut flight in June 2017. Since then, the Gripen programme is on track. In October 2017, Gripen E prototype went supersonic for the first time. The next two prototypes 39-9 and 39-10, have already left the production line at Linkoping, and are currently undergoing verification ahead of their first flights, which is scheduled for 2019.

Read the full story here.

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Saab's technology transfer programme is not special just for the Brazilian engineers, many Swedish engineers have also started feeling at home in Gavião Peixoto.

The way Sweden has been a different experience for the Brazilian engineers, in terms of weather and work culture, the Swedish professionals have had their enriching experiences as well. For example, Peter Kronkvit, a software architect at Saab, began to learn Portuguese before applying for the position in Brazil. He joined the GDDN team to help the new team understand the system and adapt the technologies. 

“I have been involved in Gripen much before the development of model E began. Our efforts are to implement the system information and data for professionals here in Brazil. In addition, we have developed the on-board computer system with the support and commitment of the AEL team. We are all very involved with this project and we know that we are dealing with very capable professionals, who do things very well and very quickly,” he says

The Brazilian Gripen programme began in 2013 when Brazil announced the selection of the Swedish fighter. The contract was signed in October 2014 and the technology transfer process began in 2015. The last Gripen fighter is scheduled to be delivered in 2024, and by then, more than 350 engineers and technicians from both countries would have experienced this exciting journey of learning and developing the smartest fighter in the world in a unique, collaborative manner. 

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Developed to counter and defeat advanced future threats, the Gripen E-series is for customers with more pronounced threats or wider territories to secure. Gripen’s intelligent fighter systems rapidly embrace new tactics, upgrades and situations and give the pilot ample time to make the decisive move.

Gripen E/F is designed to deal with more pronounced threats and wider surveillance areas. This is made possible thanks to the aircraft’s more powerful engine, improved ranged capabilities, and higher payload capability. Some other standout features of Gripen E/F are the highly functional AESA radar, InfraRed Searching and Tracking systems, highly efficient communication systems, high situational awareness, and of course, a state of the art Electronic Warfare System.

Deal With Threats on the Go

Modern battlefields are riddled with unannounced threats – coming from any direction at any time. In cluttered air-spaces, pilots need to be aware and highly reactive, and fighter planes need to be equipped with Integrated Air Defence Systems. The Gripen E/F is not only capable of these requirements, but can deploy active and passive measures to disrupt the enemy’s tactics and functionality. These measures can distract the opponent, make it incapable of sticking to its plan, and annihilate it as well. Gripen E/F is compatible with recent developments of artilleries and missiles. 

Sense the Invisible – Remain Undetected

With radar systems as powerful as the one on Gripen E/F, detection of threats is made several notches easier. The Gripen collects a wealth of data ...

​Gripen test pilots say they have the best job in the world. Watch the video to know why. 


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