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Commemorating 100 years of the Czechoslovak Air Force, one of the Czech Gripen fighters has got a makeover at the ongoing NATO Tiger Meet.

NATO Tiger Meet 2018 is an opportunity for participating aerial squadrons of NATO countries to get together and showcase their talents in some very challenging exercises. However, it’s not all work and no play; there are numerous customs and traditions involved in the Tiger Meet that make it very interesting. Each year, pilots add exciting decals to their fighters, making it look unique.

For the Czech Gripen, this year’s motif was a little different. Usually, it’s an image or a sketch of a tiger.  For example, last year, Czech Gripen was the canvas for the stylish “Wildcat”, which was a partially covered face of model Simona Krainová and a tiger. Similarly, in 2013, one of the participating Gripen had a motif called "Picasso Tiger".

Besides Czech Air Force, the Hungarian Air Force has also sent its Gripen fighters to the exercise.

NATO Tiger Meet will be held till 25 May.

You can take a look at how Czech Gripen fighters have been given a different makeover at various NATO Tiger Meets here.

Read the full story here.​

Image Courtesy: WeAreNATO

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Director General of Saab Aeronáutica Montagens (SAM), Marcelo Lima says that Saab is reaching out to companies that can offer tooling material, general equipment, consumables, general services and handling material among other things.

To begin the process, Saab met with 55 companies, out of which 35 were based out of Brazil, at a workshop recently. 

According to Lima, the shortlisted companies will play various roles in starting SAM's operations. “We are also focusing on companies that already sell to multinationals," he says.

The selection process is intensive. All the companies had to prepare presentation for stage one. "After this presentation, we sent a questionnaire that will help us know more about the company, how was it formed etc. Then we will ask for quotations followed by which we will evaluate each offer before making the final decisions,” he elaborated.

SAM was unveiled earlier this month in the city of São Bernardo do Campo, in São Paulo state, Brazil. Not only will SAM produce aerostructures for the Brazilian Gripen fighter, but also become part of Saab´s global supply chain.

As of now, Saab has selected two service providers and hired nine employees. "Our strategy is to talk to our existing partners in the Brazilian Gripen programme, who are already familiar with the aeronautical sector. We have started visiting a few companies and will hold another workshop to meet more direct suppliers between year-end and beginning of 2019,” Lima says.

Read the full story here.

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Members of Gripen User Group paid a visit to the Aeronautics Command (COMAER), in Brasília, and discussed Gripen operations, maintenance and logistics. The Brazilian Air Force (FAB) hosted the Gripen Users Group (GUG) for the first time ever. The meeting took place between participants from Sweden, Czech Republic, Hungary, South Africa, Thailand and Sweden. 

Last year, Brazilian delegates went to Prague to meet the GUG. Air Major Jefson Borges, who is in charge of all communication between the official channels of the Brazilian Defence, stressed on the importance of such gatherings. “GUG meetings take place at different professional levels, from commanders to technicians. We learn a lot from these meetings because we get to know about operating the Gripen system from various operators. This will help us be better prepared and not make the same mistakes they made,” he said.

One of the participating members, Thai Air Force Captain Jackkrit Thammavichai said, “The issues discussed in the Group help both those who are already users of the aircraft, and Brazil, who will soon have access to the latest technology.” 

The entourage headed to Gavião Peixoto from Brasilia to pay a visit to the Gripen Design and Development Network (GDDN) where Santosh Miadaira, Senior Program Manager, Embraer, Gripen programme, told everyone about the importance of GDDN."GDDN marks the beginning of the technology transfer programme between Brazil and Sweden," he said.

The next Gripen Users meeting will be hosted by Hungary.

Read the full story here​.

Image courtesy: Brazilian Air ...

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AEL Sistemas has now delivered the third prototype of the Wide Area Display (WAD) for Gripen E/F which is being developed for the Brazilian Air Force. 

The Wide Area Display in Gripen E is a panoramic high-resolution screen (19 x 8 in) that allows a redundant and intelligent presentation of information across its entire length, with the capacity to receive inputs from multitask keys, the touchscreen or external interfaces. Using data fusion, it provides the pilot with the information needed, and is the main source of flight and mission information in the cockpit.

"The delivery of Model C prototype represents AEL´s commitment to technology absorption in the development of WAD for the next generation of Brazilian fighters. We deliver the prototype on schedule, enabling Saab engineers to continue their work towards the final integration of the aircraft,” says Sergio Horta, president of AEL Sistemas.

Last year, the Model B prototype was delivered by AEL. This prototype came with the final mechanics and hardware for use in the laboratory, simulator and aircraft (ground testing). After that, further enhancements were made to Model C. The new graphic card ensures an increased processing capacity and better image presentation. With its new mechanics, hardware, and software, Model C will be used in the development and qualification tests of the aircraft during flight mode.  

Read the full story here.

Image Courtesy: AEL Sistemas​

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“Gripen has operational capability that is second to none. When you package that with value for money in terms of acquisition and life cycle cost, and also industrial packages that Saab offers, I believe we have a platform that is perfect for the market segment we are pitching to,” says Richard Smith, head of Gripen marketing and sales.

Giving a status update on the sales prospect of Gripen E/F and Gripen C/D, Richard says that both variants are in demand. “We have a unique position in the market as we can offer two very different systems from the same pedigree in the market,” he adds.

About Switzerland, he says Saab is very positive about the outcome. “This is round two. This time the country is not just replacing the F5 fighter but also the F18 Hornet. We are expecting an RFI anytime soon.”

Saab has been present in Finland for a number of years and is currently working on a proposal for the country. In the UK and the US, Saab sees great potential for Gripen Aggressor sales. 

Saab has also been in dialogue with Bulgaria and Slovakia. “I am confident that Gripen would be perfect for these nations. They have two neighbors that operate Gripen C/D, so there is a scope of working together as well,” Richard says.

About India, one of the biggest market Saab is pitching to, Richard says that his team is working on a proposal. “We would submit a proposal ...

​Get to know the inside of the all new Saab Aeronáutica Montagens (SAM). The manufacturing facility will be responsible to produce structural parts like the tail cone, aerodynamic brakes, and wing box for the 36 Gripen fighters that are being developed for  the Brazilian Air Force.

The way to experience Gripen entered a new era two years ago when the fighter was featured in a mobile game for the first time. Now an updated version is available with new features adding even more fun to the game.

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The user of the game will have to take on the challenge and fly Gripen and complete several missions at different levels of difficulties. It’s a fast “racing” flight game which offers multiple choices when it comes to tailor made Gripen in terms of skins and decals. The updated version includes a "Free Flight" mode where the user can explore the area and collect “stars” in order to unlock new skins and decals. 

Gripen Fighter Challenge is available for free on App Store and Google Play


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Saab has achieved another important milestone in its Brazil Gripen programme by unveiling a 5,000-square-meter facility for its future Gripen fighter jet aerostructures plant: Saab Aeronáutica Montagens (SAM) yesterday. The facility is located in the city of São Bernardo do Campo, in São Paulo state, Brazil. 

SAM will be given the responsibility of producing six complex structural parts for Gripen for FAB - the tail cone, aerodynamic brakes, wing box, front fuselage for the single-seat and two-seat versions and the rear fuselage for the single-seat version of the aircraft.

"We are transferring knowledge and production capacity for complex aerostructures to Brazil, in compliance with our offset agreement. The plant is planned to be part of the global Saab supply chain for the civil aviation and defence markets," explains Mikael Franzén, Head of Business Unit Gripen Brazil, Saab Aeronautics.

The operations at SAM are planned to begin in 2020 with about 55 employees. This number will gradually increase to 200. The hiring process has already started and the new employees will soon start their training in Linköping.

Read the full story here

The Czech Air Force will, after winning the title of ‘Best Fixed Wing Display’ last year, return at the RNAS Yeovilton International Air Day this year with more Gripen solo displays. This will be the third consecutive appearance at the event for Gripen.

The Czech Air Force will be looking to put up a commanding display at Somerset to an audience of 40,000. At the helm will be Capt. Ivo Kardoše, who is renowned in the circuit for his spectacular displays with Gripen. Besides the five hour flying display of various fighters from around the world, visitors will also get a chance to experience engineering fair and defence exhibition as well.

RNAS Yeovilton Air Day will take place on the 7th of July, 2018.

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Erica Magnusson and Maritza Erlandsson who are working on the final assembly of Gripen, participated at the WorldSkills Event in Uppsala, Sweden recently. Both these women have graduated from top tier flight schools in Sweden before successfully applying for jobs at Saab.

About working at Saab, Erica believes that it is a company with many opportunities. "If I put in the effort, I know that Saab will back me up and help me sharpen my skills," she said.

Erica, on the other hand, is excited about the fact that she works on Gripen. "It feels great to be working with something that is at the leading edge, like when we work on the Gripen E fighter. When we run into problems we get together and talk it over to come up with a solution instead of trying to work it out alone," she said.

The contest in Uppsala involves young students testing their skills against one another in 40 occupational categories. The event aims at building interest and recruitment for vocational training among young students and professionals.

To read the full interview, click here.

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