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During Lion Effort the F 17 wing and the Swedish Air Force Chief of Staff, Major General Micael Bydén, are playing host to air chiefs and other high-ranking officials from the participant nations, says a Saab Update. The exercise provides a perfect backdrop against which further co-operation and developments can be discussed.

High-ranking representatives of the five Gripen nations have all visited Ronneby on the third day of the ‘Livex’ phase of Lion Effort, not only to review the exercise but to take the opportunity to discuss progress and developments within the Gripen User Group.

During Lion Effort the F 17 wing and the Swedish Air Force Chief of Staff, Major General Micael Bydén, are playing host to air chiefs and other high-ranking officials from the participant nations. Photo: Dave Donald

When asked about how the exercise was going for the SAAF contingent, Major General Tsoku Khumalo replied that, “We’re doing our own flying, we’re having fun flying the Gripen. You can see the smiles on the pilots’ faces! I think we have the best aircraft in the world.” He added that, “when we are doing our planning for the air force, we would like put it through to host Lion Effort in 2018. We would like to reciprocate what is happening here.”

Source: Gathering of the Air Chiefs

Eight planned missions – eight flights was the tally for the Hungarian detachment after the the first day’s flying during the ‘Livex’ phase. The first day also provided an opportunity for two of Hungary’s new Gripen pilots to gain their first experience of COMAO exercises, says aSaab updateon the Lion Effort.

One of the main focus areas for Hungary in Lion Effort is validating new communications equipment. “Yesterday was the first time that we could really check out the new equipment,” said Lieutenant Colonel Csaba Ugrik, Hungarian contingent commander. “The Have Quick radio worked properly, the Swedish link worked properly, and – last but not least – the Link 16 worked well.

“At home we had the opportunity to check it out between the fighters and the ground, and also in the simulator, so the pilots were familiar with the symbology and tactics,” continued Ugrik, “but yesterday was the first time we could really use it in live flying. The reports from the pilots are that ‘we are opening the world’ with Link 16. It is very useful when you are establishing tactics, and you have all of the information on the screen.”

During the first day Hungarian Gripens operated with the Swedes as Blue Force, primarily to test the Link 16 as they are currently the only nations with the equipment. The Swedish AEW aircraft was involved, too, which is also Link 16-capable. With the datalink now proven, Hungarian Gripens are now flying in mixed forces ...

​Just prior to Lion Effort the Hungarian air force sent Gripens to Vidsel in the north of Sweden for a live-firing campaign during which both missiles and guns were fired. That deployment provided excellent experience ahead of the exercise, as well as the opportunity for the kind of low-level training that is difficult to achieve in Hungary, according to a Saab update.

When the Lion Effort exercise was being planned there was an offer from the Swedish Air Force to put together some live-firing as well. In the run-up to the exercise it was planned that both Czech and Hungarian Gripens would undertake a joint live-fire exercise. In the event, timing issues meant that this was not possible, so while the Hungarians have just returned from Vidsel, the Czechs will go there after the exercise.

Hungarian Gripen C equipped with a Laser Designator Pod.

During the firing campaign the Hungarian Gripens fired eight AIM-9 Sidewinder air-to-air missiles at Rb 06 (MQM-107) target drones, each of which can tow four infrared target flares from under its wings. Twelve Hungarian pilots also got experience of firing the Gripen’s 27-mm BK 27 cannon.

The firing campaign went well, achieving all of its objectives. “At Vidsel the weather can be a little changeable, but we were lucky,” said Lt Col Csaba Ugrik, chief of flight ops at the 59th Tactical Wing and commander of the Hungarian contingent at Lion Effort. “We planned to fire missiles on the Monday, but there were weather issues, so ...

Lion-Effort-2012-300dpi.pngAircraft from four of the five nations that operate the Gripen have come together for a unique exercise at F 17 Wing of the Swedish Air Force. Lion Effort involves Gripens from the Czech Republic, Hungary and South Africa, as well as those from the host nation, Sweden. Although it is not operating aircraft here, the Royal Thai Air Force has sent observers to the exercise.

All the participants in the Lion Effort exercise are now gathered at F 17. Photo: Peter Liander

Lion Effort 2012 represents not only a unique opportunity for the Gripen operators to train together, but also provides a place where the Gripen community can exchange information and share operational know-how face-to-face.

Through the Gripen User Group a close co-operation has been established between the export customers, FMV, FXM, the Swedish Air Force and Saab. It provides a continuous forum for both operational and technical data exchange, and comes as one of the many unique benefits of operating this aircraft.Experience input from each the Gripen users adds to an extensive common knowledge base.

Aircraft began assembling at Ronneby for the exercise earlier this week. The South African Air Force Gripens taking part in the exercise are the last four to be handed over to the air force, and they have been held back in Sweden so that the SAAF can participate in Lion Effort with its own machines.

From the Czech Republic comes three aircraft from 211 Squadron at Cáslav, together with three Aero L-159s. ...

​Major Jaroslav Tomaňa and Captain Petr Dřevecký of 21 tactical air base in Čáslav, the Czech Republic became the first pilots in the history of the Czech Air Force to perform air-to-air refuelling, according to a Saab update. After initial training at the Swedish Air Force base F17 in Ronneby, Sweden, the refuelling took place over central Sweden from a Swedish C-130 Hercules tanker.

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The first Czech Gripen air-to-air refuelling campaign took less than a week. Initial sorties were made in a two-seat Gripen, with a Swedish instructor. During the first day the Czech Gripen successfully connected to the tanker seven times. The first connections were dry-runs, followed by real air-to-air refuelling connections where fuel from the tanker was transferred to Gripen. 

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During the rest of the week the missions were flown in single-seat Gripen aircraft without an instructor.“Air-to-air refuelling capability is important for the Czech Republic as the country is a member of NATO. This capability further increases and strengthens the cooperation between Czech Air Force and other Air Forces within NATO and it will as well facilitate joint exercises within the framework of NATO operations”, says former Swedish Air Force squadron commander Robert Björklund, Saab Campaign Director Gripen Czech Republic.

Photos: Milan Nikodym, Stefan Kalm

Source:Czech Gripen Pilots Practice Air-to-Air Refuelling in Sweden

ForcaAerea.jpgA recent report in the November issue of Brazilian magazineRevista Força Aérea by Rudnei Dias da Cunha took a hard look at the Raven ES-05 AESA for the Gripen NG which is a contender for the Brazilian Air Force’s order.

According to the report, the air-to-air and air-to-ground modes have successfully been integrated to the Raven 1000P radar prototype, achieving the expected performance. A special emphasis was given to the air-to-ground imaging capacity at great distances, with the Raven 1000P producing excellent medium-resolution to high-resolution imaging in synthetic aperture mode.

Excerpts from the report: 

The Raven ES-05 is an evolution of the fire control radars of the Raven family (500E and 1000E), manufactured by Selex Galileo. Selex Galileo has the unique distinction of not only creating an array of fire control AESA radars (the Vixen E family) but also a number of AESA surveillance radars (the Seaspray E family).

The Raven ES-05 radar uses about one thousand TRMs capable of generating high-power radar beams. The radar also generates a wide array of wave and processing regimes, capable of implementing a set of air-to-air seek while tracking, combat, air-to-ground and air-to-sea modes.

In air-to-air operation, the radar is capable of listing and monitoring multiple spaced targets, making maneuvers and facing “jamming” while, simultaneously providing course corrections to semi-autonomous guidance Beyond Visual Range (BVR) missiles. In air-to-ground surveillance and target control mode, the radar provides a variety of high-resolution RF images over large terrain areas, as well as the ...

The Swiss government says it wants to buy 22 Gripen fighter jets from Sweden’s Saab AB to replace a fleet of Northrop F-5 Tigers.

The Gripen was chosen over the Dassault Systemese SA’s (DSY.FR) Rafale aircraft and the Eurofighter, made by European Aeronautic Defence & Space Co. (EAD.FR), the government said.

According to a report in Swiss newspaper Tages-Anzeiger earlier Wednesday, the deal is valued at around 3 billion Swiss francs ($3.3 billion).

According to a Saab statement, “the Swiss government has decided to select Gripen as its future multirole fighter aircraft for the Swiss Air Force. Given that Switzerland is known globally for applying highest procurement standards and requesting state-of-the art technologies, Saab is both proud and delighted that Gripen has been chosen as the Swiss Air Force’s future multirole fighter aircraft.”"The Swiss type-selection confirms that Saab is a market-leader in the defence and security industry and that Gripen is a world-class fighter system that provides the best value for money”, says Håkan Buskhe, President and CEO Saab.

 According to the Saab release, the Gripen programme will create a long-term partnership between Switzerland and Sweden. Saab assures Switzerland a long-term strategic industrial co-operation aimed at creating sustainable high tech jobs, transferring technology and generating export business.Gripen is in service with the Swedish, Czech Republic, Hungarian, South African and Royal Thai Air Forces. The UK Empire Test Pilots’ School (ETPS) is operating Gripen as its advanced fast jet platform for test pilots worldwide. Saab is also delivering successful industrial ...

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By Björn Danielsson                                                                                        

Holistic Approach

Gripen NG is the only modern fighter taking a holistic approach to the utilization of electromagnetic energy in air combat. In Gripen NG we implement the Wide Spectrum Combat,thereby recognizing that information gathering and information sharing are two sides of the same coin.

Future Air Combat

What do we mean by this? Well, let’s take an example. In air combat, the basic problem is to find out where the enemy aircraft are. If you don’t know this you cannot launch your weapons. The same is true for the enemy, of course. Traditionally, fighter aircraft use their onboard radars for this. But future air combat is most likely to be much more silent than it is today. This means that fighter aircraft approaching each other will try to emit as little electromagnetic energy as possible, not using their radars in active mode.

Silent Gripens

Gripen NG is built for such future silent operations. When Gripen NG approaches an advanced adversary in the air, its powerful AESA radar and EW antennas are silent, listening. These two systems are very well adapted for position determination by only listening to enemy emissions. It is important to notice that in a totally silent scenario, where all aircraft avoid emitting with radar, RCS (Radar Cross Section) is meaningless.

It doesn’t matter if you have the best stealth features in the world if all radars in the scenario are turned off. And as soon as an enemy turns his radar on and ...

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