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​Czech Air Force Gripen fighters will join NATO’s multinational air force unit to train with German fighter aircraft, according to Jakub Fajnor, the representative from the Defence Ministry of Czech Republic.

The Minister of Defence, Karla Šlechtová, also signed a letter on Czech Republic’s intention to join the air force unit during a meeting among defence ministers of NATO countries in Brussels.

The cooperation between Czech and German pilots is part of the German Nations Framework Concept (FNC) and will help streamline the operational procedures to allow joint deployment. According to Šlechtová, "Participating in the multinational air force unit is a great opportunity to demonstrate the outstanding capabilities of our pilots to our allies within NATO and at the same time learn from them". 

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In the wake of reports that suggest Philippines' President Rodrigo Duterte has approved the Multi-Role Fighter (MRF) programme in principle, Saab has strongly positioned Gripen in the country. The Swedish Defence Group has established contact with the Philippine Air Force (PAF) to meet their demands.

Dubbed the ‘Smart Fighter’, Gripen is equally versatile when it comes to performing different roles that require defensive countermeasures, attack roles or surveillance. Further, the latest developments to Electronic Warfare capabilities adds an edge to the fighter system.

A spokesperson of Saab said, “It’s a positive development for us in the Philippines, and we are encouraged by the momentum that is now building around the MRF programme.”

The requirements of the PAF, as revealed in detailed discussions with Saab, is for two squadrons to be delivered over two batches. Saab is in dialogue with PAF and AFP regarding the military requirements of the country. “We have had detailed discussions with the PAF’s technical working group that has been studying the options for the Philippines,” said the spokesperson toJanes​.

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Four students from the Brazilian Air Force Flight Test and Research Institute, IPEV (Instituto de Pesquisas e Ensaios em Voo) in São Paulo, were in Linköping recently for their final examination project, which involved an evaluation of JAS 39 Gripen. The objective was to verify the ability of pilots and engineering students in evaluating the aircraft’s air defence capabilities.

The evaluation – termed Preview – was carried out by the students of the XXVII Flight Testing Course, spanning a period of 12 days from 7th to 18th May​. During this period, the four students flew the Gripen D on eight occasions, collecting notes and data, in addition to assessing Gripen’s air-to-air and air-to-ground capabilities.

These evaluations were based on an Instruction Test Request issued by the Flight Testing department of IPEV.

Once the students graduate they will eventually work in the Flight Test Squadron of the Brazilian Flight Test and Research Institute. They will mainly work on the Brazilian Air Force projects involving Gripen E and other modernisation programmes.

1.jpg2.jpg3.jpg4.jpg The 172nd Squadron of the Swedish Air force participated in an air combat exercise last week, over the Baltic Sea with the French Air force (Armée de l'air française). SwAF deployed four Gripen fighters from Ronneby, Sweden while the French started with two Mirage 2000-5 from the Ämari Air Base in Estonia.

The exercise was conducted in line with the Finnish-Swedish Training Event – the Swedish government’s understanding with countries surrounding the Baltic Sea to strengthen security cooperation. Over the years, the two countries have participated in a series of drills with the air forces of the NATO members temporarily present in the Baltic states, as part of FSTE. Exercises like this are a great opportunity for pilots to train with different fighters and develop interoperability. 



172sqn Gators

Swedish Air Force

Five Czech Gripen fighters will be deployed for another mission in the Baltic States in the second half of 2019.

The fighters have been earlier deployed in the Baltic States in 2009 and 2012. For the previous missions, five Gripen fighters and about 95 personnel, mostly from the 21st Air Force Base of Caslav, have been sent.

Czech Gripens' NATO air policing of the Baltic States is in favour of the NATO Integrated Air Defence System – NATINADS. As a part of the air policing mission, Gripen pilots are at the ready 24*7, and are expected to take-off within 15 minutes of being alerted.

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Saab will begin flight tests with a new jamming pod by 2020, reports Shephard Media.

This self-protection system, also known as the Arexis Jammer Pod, was launched last year in September. The pod works on the DRFM (digital radio frequency memory) and AESA technology. DRFM digitally captures the signature of the radar-guided threat and then emits a jamming signal to confuse the incoming missile, usually by giving it a ‘false target’.

“We see a huge interest in the airborne electronic attack pods. In NATO, there is a need for airborne electronic attack…there is a capability gap,” says Petter Bedoire, head of marketing and sales for EW at Saab.

Once the Jammer prototype will be integrated with Gripen, the fighter’s EW capabilities, which already boast of ultra-wide brand digital receivers, high powered signal amplifiers, gallium nitride and electronically scanned array jammers, will be considerably boosted. 

As per Saab, Arexis also includes an advanced Electronic Attack (EA) application, with EW technologies adapted to the lower frequency ranges that are required to jam modern anti-stealth air defence systems. The EA application provides high output power and is packed in a pod to make it a role-specific solution.

Bedoire says the Jamming Pods mean a significant leap in technology, and will be the most advanced self-protection system for a fighter.

As a part of the test flight of Gripen equipped with the jammers, radars will illuminate the aircraft, and it’ll be tested whether the aircraft will ...

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The Hungarian Air Force sent five Gripen fighters to participate in this year's NATO Tiger Meet (NTM 2018). The fighters flew 60 hours during the 12 day exercise.

The Tiger Meet this year involved 24 squadrons contributing 70 fighters and 10 helicopters. The exercise saw 1500 personnel from the 16 participating countries coming together for joint air exercises which involved different aircraft types and operational procedures. The Tiger Meet gave pilots an opportunity to collaborate and learn from senior pilots of other air forces.

Hungary has been participating in the Tiger meet since 2014. This year too the participating team took away learnings from joint operations and complex air combat simulations with 70 aircraft operating simultaneously in air-to-air and air-to-ground tasks. The Ground staff too were a part of the operations, manning the ‘war rooms’ during the exercises.

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Between 18th and 29th of this month, Czech Gripen pilots will train with USAF pilots as a part of an international military exercise Sky Avenger 2018. The exercise will be held at the Czech air base in Caslav, 80 km east of Prague.

“Arrivals of F-16 and KC-135 are scheduled for Friday, June 15. The exercise will be started with introductory briefings, and the first flight events will take place in the afternoon,” said Tomás Maruščák, a senior management representative at the air force base.

Sky Avengers 2018 is planned in two stages. In the morning, fighters will take part in Composite Air Operations or COMAO missions. In the afternoon, the pilots will practice aerial combat and direct air support tasks. Ground handling procedures and aerial refueling will also be a part of the training process.   

The Czech Air Force, along with the supersonic Gripens, will deploy L-159 Alca Battalions from the Caslav base, and Mi-24/35, Mi24/35 and Mi-171 helicopters from Namest nad Oslavou, south Moravia. 

Czech Air Force's collaboration with the Texas and Nebraska National Guard began in 1993 with a goal to assist Czech forces in joining NATO. Over the years, the cooperation has grown to include commanding, cyber security, and protection against weapons of mass destruction.  

There will be a Spotter’s Day on June 20th when aviation enthusiasts can take pictures or make videos at the air base. Photoshoot will be organized one hundred meters from the take-off and landing ...

Winning in a modern battlespace has become more challenging with every passing day, thanks to the fast-paced technological advancements. Situational awareness, however, can turn the tables when it comes to taking decisions faster than your opponent. 

Saab Test Pilot, Martin, talks about the features of Gripen E's Wide Area Display (WAD), a panoramic high-resolution screen (19 x 8 in) that uses data fusion to provide the pilot with all kinds of flight and mission information during a flight, at the recently held Canada's Global Defence & Security Trade Show (CANSEC 2018). 

WAD shares the right tactical information with the pilot at the right time. In fact, it does more than that. It shares information in easily interpretable, information-centric icons. The pilot can reconfigure information presentation as per their requirement during a mission.

With WAD, the pilot can toggle between different screens simultaneously, and also opt for full screen mode for any of the functionalities for the sake of superior situational awareness. “Fighter aircraft today need to have tactical supervision over a greater physical area as compared to aircraft of the past, owing greatly to the invention and prevalence of BVR (Beyond Visual Range) missiles. The Wide Area Display comes in very handy in providing this data, “says Martin.

Brazilian company AEL Sistemas (AEL) is Saab's supplier of WAD. The first simulator with WAD was presented by Saab in April this year.​

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The fifth generation of fighter aircraft was defined in the 1980s and was characterized by an emphasis on positional awareness and stealth. However, it’s been quite a while since then, and the focus has gradually shifted from overtly relying on stealth and tactical positioning to Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance, collectively grouped as ISR capabilities. Since the Gripen E/F is being developed to have these capabilities, and with several advanced software features that are considered breakthroughs in defence, Bill Sweetman of Aviation Week had argued that it could well be called a sixth generation fighter.

Explaining some of the key concepts of Gripen evolution in a recent interview with HushKit, Richard Smith, Head of Gripen Marketing, points out that the pace of technology probably makes the concept of “generations” redundant: “We have understood that the future of air combat is going to be defined by technology – and we have built a system that truly adapts and embraces new technologies in a way that will keep us ahead of 21st century threats – fast. This is achieved through our deep and long experiences in sensor fusion and a revolutionary avionics system. For me, it means that the talk of generations, I hear so much of from within the industry just no longer means anything at all. The technology we have now, the ideas Saab engineers are working on, ensure that Gripen quite literally transcends all generations.”

About Gripen's thrust-to-weight ratio, Smith says that it is certainly enough. "The ...

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