Skip Ribbon Commands
Skip to main content

Gripen

The Smart Fighter

Quick Launch

Gripen > Tags

Tags: Gripen C/D

Thirty years ago, Gripen took off on its very first flight. The designated test pilot was Stig Holmström. Last year test pilot Marcus Wandt took Gripen E on its first flight. The two pilots met up for a chat.

​Wing 7 recently invited over school children to take a look at the Air Base, understand military service and ask questions. 

RTAF Gripen1_0718.jpg
RTAF Gripen2_0718.jpg
RTAF Gripen3_0712.jpg
RTAF Gripen 40712.jpg

Image Courtesy: RTAF


Swaf Gripen_6_12_18.jpg

The Swedish Defence Materiel Administration (FMV) has submitted its Gripen proposal to the Bulgarian Ministry of Defence. The offer consists of eight new fully NATO-interoperable Gripen C/D fighter aircraft to equip the Bulgarian Air Force. Four out of these eight Gripen fighters with the latest MS20 configuration will be delivered within two years of signing a contract. Training of the pilots and technicians with full QRA capability will also be included within the budget framework.

“The Swedish offer meets the requirements of the Bulgarian government regarding budget, delivery schedule and capabilities of the new aircraft,” says Joakim Wallin, Director Export and International Relations, Swedish Defence Materiel Administration.

As a part of Saab's offer, two fully equipped hangars will be built at the Graf Ignatievo airbase. There will be a regional fighter support center as well which promises creation of new jobs.

Bulgaria is currently deciding which fighter plane to zero-in on, and has so far, three options- Saab's Gripen,  Lockheed Martin's F16, and secondhand Eurofighters from Italy. After being analysed by the first level of expert group, the bids are currently being evaluated by a political military commission.

Read the full story here

RTAF Gripen 3.jpg 
 
In the last four years, the Swedish, the Czech Republic, and the Hungarian Air Forces have successfully completed the MS20 upgrade to their Gripen fleet.  And now, the Royal Thai Air Force (RTAF) is reportedly looking to upgrade its fleet of 11 Gripen C/Ds with the latest configuration. Their Gripens are currently configured to the MS19 version. 

The MS20 upgrade involves both software and hardware upgrade which would enhance Gripen’s air-to-ground target engagement by integrating electro-optical pods that will allow the jets to drop laser-guided bombs.

Along with an enhancement of Gripen’s air-to-ground target engagement ability, the MS20 configuration will also introduce new radar modes that will improve the fighter’s air-to-air target engagement even more. The upgrade will also add Boeing’s Small Diameter Bomb and MBDA’s Meteor beyond-visual-range-air-to-air-missile (BVRAAM).

According to another news report in Defense News​, RTAF however, would not need the integration of the NATO standard 16 datalink used by NATO and its partner nations. The RTAF’s Gripens will continue to run on Link T, which is the Thai military’s indigenous network.

"We are planning to upgrade the Gripens to the MS20 standard. We have seen the capabilities of the latest standard and it’s everything we need," says Group Captain Prachya Tippayarat, Deputy Commander of the RTAF's Wing 7 at Surat Thani Air Base. “However, no details on the timelines have been announced yet,” he adds.

It was in 2008 when an agreement was signed between ...

Gripen_Calendar_2018-14.jpg

Flares wow at airshows, but their real world application is far more important. Flares are one of the many systems that enable Gripen combat survivability.

Photo: Istvan “TopiDoc” Toperczer

gripen e_meteor1_2911.jpg

With meteor, a Gripen pilot does not need to see the actual target before firing. One of the most lethal radar-guided missiles, Meteor boasts of a two way data-link and an active radar target seeker which ensures that the missile reaches its target, even at very long ranges. Not just that, a two-way datalink also enables the launch aircraft to provide mid-course target updates or retargeting if required, including data from off-board third parties.

“Meteor is the world's most modern radar guided missile. Combined with IRIS-T, we (the Swedish Air Force) now have the world's best air-to-air missiles integrated with the next generation Gripen. Together, these missiles ensure superior air dominance”, says Pierre Ziheri, pilot and director of TU JAS (Tactical Development JAS 39 Gripen). TU JAS is an FMV unit which is fully focused on a single task: to develop the tactical ability within the Gripen fighter system.

Gripen C/D was the first fighter aircraft to have the meteor capability. The test flight was conducted by FMV and Saab in the year 2012. Last month, Gripen E flew for the first time with a Meteor.

According to an FMV report, meteor is a software based weapon system, which means it can be reprogrammed in future if needed. For example, unlike Gripen C/D which has a Rail Lowering system, 

Gripen E has a new eject kit for the missiles which allows it to carry weapons under the aircraft body. Therefore, changes were made to meteor ...

20181112_Jörgen_Nilsson_Halmstad_002.jpg
20181112_Jörgen_Nilsson_Halmstad_001.jpg
20181112_Jörgen_Nilsson_Halmstad_003.jpg

F 7 Såtenäs had their Gripen pilots practise for emergencies and quick reaction missions earlier this month.

The exercise was a complete surprise for the division's staff. 24 hours after the launch of the emergency chain of commands, the 72nd fighter division had redeployed its personnel and equipment, including three Gripen fighters, and was able to start completing the tasks at the Halmstad airport. The fighter division continued to operate from Halmstad Base until Wednesday afternoon, after which it re-grouped at the home base Såtenäs.

The ability to operate from dispersed bases is very important for SwAF. "For the past three years, F 7 and the Air Force have taken several important steps in that direction," said Lars Helmrich, head of Skaraborg's air wing, F 7. 

“With the exercise this week, we continue to strengthen the ability of the Air Force to operate from several bases. This increases the accessibility of the Air Force as well.”

Read the full story here.

Photo courtesy: Forsvarsmakten​

​Trident Juncture 2018 helped NATO allies and member countries test their military capabilities in  Norway, the North Atlantic and the Baltic Sea. The two week long exercise had over 50,000 personnel, 250 aircraft, 65 ships, and up to 10,000 vehicles participating.


trident juncture 2018_02.jpg
trident juncture2018_01.jpg
trident Juncture 2018_03.jpg
Trident Juncture2018_04.jpg
Trident Juncture2018_05.jpg
Trident Juncture 2018_06.jpg
Videos: Shape NATO

Photos: Louise Levin

During a two-week training at the Vidsel Air Base, Hungarian Gripen fighters were put through various training exercises to test the new capabilities that come with the MS20 update.

With its huge test and training area, the Vidsel Air Base is an ideal place for the six Hungarian Gripen fighters to train. "Technically, the MS20 capabilities have already been integrated to the fighters. But it is time to train the team to use the new features," says Lennart Zettergren, who is responsible for training at FMV, export division.

As a part of the MS20 update, Hungarian Gripen's engine control system, aircraft control system, and avionics system have gone through a software update. Pilot-machine interface, link functions, and radar functions have been updated as well. 

"So many changes are not easy to incorporate in a short span of time. There are several challenges. But the seamless cooperation between Saab, FMV and Hungary has made the modernisation of the Hungarian Gripen fleet possible despite a tight schedule," says Kristian Saf Pernselius, Project Manager for Gripen, Hungary at FMV.   

Read the full story here.

Trident Juncture is one of NATO's biggest exercises in recent years. More than 51,000 personnel from 31 countries are participating in this exercise. There are about 250 aircraft and helicopters, 65 vessels and 10,000 vehicles involved. The exercise is being conducted in Norway, Sweden and Finland.

One of the main goals of Trident Juncture is to test NATO Response Force's capabilities. For Swedish participants, the exercise is a great opportunity to work with different air forces, and operate different weapon systems, connection systems etc. A lot of coordination is also required by Gripen pilots to fly with multiple fighters (as many as 50).

A usual morning for SwAF Gripen unit participating at the Trident Juncture 2018 involves a set of exercises. In the morning, they have the AM Wave, which usually consists of small missions. In the afternoon and evening, all large scale exercises are performed. Night time flying is usually similar missions with night vision goggles.

Trident Juncture 2018 ended on 7th November.

Read the full story here.

< 11 - 20 >