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The Smart Fighter

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akesvensson_saab1-300x199.jpgSaab is gradually moving away from its reliance on the Swedish market and expanding its international business. Saab is increasingly active in areas such as UAVs, where it is developing sense-and-avoid technology, and underwater maritime systems, in which the European Defence Agency (EDA) has expressed an interest.

Saab President and CEO  Ake Svennson discussing about Saab and its future plans for the global market in an interview published​pointed out thatSaab has gradually increased its international export business, with around 5 percent annual growth every year for the last 10 years. Currently, about two-thirds of its business is made up of exports, and the rest in Sweden.

On the question whether Saab will be knocked out of the fighter market if it doesn’t win contracts for its Gripen from Brazil and India,he said the Swedish Air Force and government made it very clear last year that they see the Gripen as a core component of the long-term future of the Swedish defense forces.

SeaGripen_032_landb copy.jpgA story filed in theStratpostby Saurabh Joshi reports that Gripen has made presentations of its Sea Gripen fighter aircraft to the Indian Navy last week. India and Brazil have both shown interest in a naval variant of the Gripen.

Earlier reports said Saab AB had received a Request For Information (RFI) from the Indian Navy for the supply of carrier-borne fighter aircraft. The company, which received the RFI earlier this month, is pitching a naval variant of its Gripen NG fighter, called the Sea Gripen. India’s RfI was released to bidders over recent weeks and seeks detailed information on a common aircraft design for conventional aircraft carrier operations and short take-off but arrested recovery (STOBAR) operations, says Jane’s

According to Stratpost, Tony Ogilvy, Vice President, International Marketing for Gripen informed StratPost that his company had made presentations to the navy last week and said the response was ‘very good’.

Ogilvy said the ‘inherent design characteristics’ of the Gripen aircraft make it ‘very similar to a deck based aircraft’.

He said that in the two-hour presentation, which took place last Friday, Sea Gripen’s salt water protection characteristics and maritime operational engine and its ability to operate off both CATOBAR and STOBAR carriers were some of the features highlighted.

According to Ogilvy, the Sea Gripen is being especially pitched to nations which are looking for compact carriers and are not necessarily interested in global force projection capabilities. The aircraft is said to have a very small footprint and is very ...

​The first pair of the Gripen JAS 39 C, 3910 and 3110 for delivery to SAAF arrived by sea at the Table Harbour on February 10. According to a story on the the unofficial SAAF, the first two Gripen C single-seat fighters destined for the SAAF were towed to AFB Ysterplaat.

The first Gripen C was initially due for delivery in late October/early November last year, but was delayed by South Africa so that the two aircraft could be shipped together.

Gripen India had earlier reported that  the SAAF has received nine Gripen D dual seater aircraft and the SAAF is preparing for the imminent arrival of the first single-seat Gripen C. The SAAF has 26 Gripens on order, comprising 17 single-seaters and nine two-seaters. The first Gripen D was accepted by the SAAF in April 2008, with deliveries continuing at regular intervals until the final Gripen C is delivered in 2012.

Says the SAAF forum, once serviceable, the two aircraft will be flown to the SAAF’s Test Flight Development Centre (TFDC) in the Southern Cape. They will remain there for approximately two weeks before flying to AFB Makhado near the town of Louis Trichardt, were they will join 2 Squadron.

It was announced in November 1998 that as part of the new defence equipment package, the SAAF would acquire the Saab-BAE Systems supplied Gripen new generation fighter aircraft, customised to meet specific South African requirements, to fulfil the role of an Advanced Light Fighter Aircraft.The original order ...

​Saab has selected the Infrared Search and Track (IRST) system SKYWARD-G to equip Saab’s Gripen Next Generation (NG) fighter, according to an announcement bySELEX Galileo​.

IRST provides similar functionality to a radar without giving out electromagnetic radiation and can therefore provide full operational search and track functionality with a stealth capability. IRST can operate in highly cluttered environments to track single and multiple targets, and can also operate in slaved acquisition mode.

SKYWARD-G is a product of SELEX Galileo’s extensive experience in the field of infrared search and track airborne and naval systems and is the latest addition to the Company’s proven record in delivering innovative technology to customers. The selection of the SKYWARD-G system follows the agreement signed in March 2009 between Saab and SELEX Galileo for the development of the Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar Raven ES-05 for the Gripen Next Generation.

SELEX Galileo is a key provider of leading edge sensors for the most advanced fighters. With the Raven ES-05 and with the IRST, the Company will be guaranteeing the full mission effectiveness of the next generation aircraft Gripen NG.

img_72461-300x212.jpgThailand’s first single-seater Gripen has completed its maiden flight in Linköping.

In September, Thailand’s twin-seat Gripen completed its maiden flight and on 6th February it was time for the first single-seater to take to the skies.

In 2008, Thailand ordered a complete aircraft and command and control system from FMV, the Swedish Defence Material Administration, with Saab consequently receiving an order from FMV worth SEK 2 billion. The order includes six Gripen aircraft with associated equipment and service, one Saab 340 aircraft equipped with Erieye radar, a Saab 340 for transport and training plus an integrated command and control system with data links.

“Thailand is an extremely important customer for us, and is a region that we have a lot of faith in. It therefore feels satisfying to be able to prove that we stick to our promises. Three out of the six Thai Gripen aircraft are now flying and we have reached all of the milestones in the contract so far,” says Lennart Sindahl, Head of the Aeronautics Business Area.

football2010fifaworldcupsouthafrica1.jpgThe inaugural game of the 2010 Soccer World Cup kicks off in South Africa in about four months time and the South African Air Force is confident it, and the Gripen, is ready.

The SAAF is required to protect and safeguard the airspace around the 2010 Soccer World Cup venues. Under Operation Kgwele, the SANDF’s World Cup support plan, the SAAF will have an array of aircraft on duty for the event, including the missile and cannon armed Saab Gripen fighters, cannon-fitted BAE Systems Hawk Mk120 advanced trainers and gun-toting Denel CSH2A Rooivalk attack helicopters, supported by the Pilatus MkII Astra trainer and Denel M1 Oryx as well as Agusta A109M helicopters.

The SAAF contingent, numbering around 2500 personnel, consist of aircrew, technicians, mobile radar mission controllers and many others who will be deployed to support the aircraft and radars. With respect to the various Shield exercises, Gagniano says: “A number of lessons were learnt in the process, not the least of these being how the Gripen, with its sophisticated radar system, adds a new dimension to Air Force operational strategy.”

The Swedish Air Force joined hands with the French and Polish Air Force to organize an air refueling campaign at LSS/TUJAS 39: auspices (Air Combat School/Tactical and Technological development) this week. The drive aims to impart basic training to the pilots in air refueling and to sharpen the skills of pilots who had completed the training previously.

The air refueling will be carried out by a French KC-135, normally based at Istres in Southern France, but for the campaign is based in Poland. The tanker from there has a day to fly to the Baltic Sea practice area and upto fiver hours per day of air refueling for the Swedish Gripen JAS-39. The tanker flies under the minions an international cooperation program under which nations will contribute with different abilities including air refueling and transport. Sweden is participating with the FEEDER with C-130 as the transport aircraft.

The basic training of the Swedish pilots takes place at the F-17 wing which provides most of the flight of the JAS Gripen 39 during the air refueling operation. Gripen aircrafts from the F-21 and the FMV wing take part from the base units. With the help of air refueling, a stopover in Southern Sweden is not required.

Observers of the Gripen Users Group from the Czech Republic, South Africa and Hungary visited the F-17 Wing during the week to abide by the air refueling operations on site and to share experiences.

The practical education of Sweden aviation constitutes of four flight ...

With reports that the Royal Thai Government on Tuesday has approved the procurement of six JAS 39 Gripens for 15,4 billion baht as proposed by the Ministry of Defense after the purchase of the first six aircrafts was earlier approved, the Royal Thai Airforce is going strong on its Gripen program. Meanwhile, the first group of Thai Air Force technicians have arrived in Sweden for their initial maintenance type conversion course on the Gripen fighter.

The Defence Minister of Sweden, Sten Tolgfors formally declared the approval of the deal to the government’s cabinet. The agreement covers the six Gripen aircraft, the Erieye radar surveillance system and the accompanying data-link systems. The delivery of the jets is slated to be in 2011.​​

thaigripen2-300x190.jpgTraining is underway at the Swedish Armed Forces Technical school in Halmstad for Thai Airforce Technicians and will continue until the end of the year. The technical training also includes a On the Job Training (OJT) part at the Swedish Air Force Wings F 7 in Såtenäs and F 17 in Ronneby. As part of their training, technicians spent time at Saab’s Gripen manufacturing hub in Linköping. The technicians’ training programme forms part of Thailand’s 2008 procurement contract for six Gripen fighter jets.

In a parallel initiative, Air Chief Marshal Itthaporn Subhawong, Commander in Chief of the Royal Thai Air Force (RTAF), met with Lt. Gen. Carlo Gagiano, Chief of the South African Air Force to discuss areas of mutual interest, including Gripen and its introduction into the SAAF. ...

Flying the Gripen, the real thing or the simulator, is an exhilirating enough ride. When Haris Hussain of the New Straits Times got his hands on the stick in the simulator, out came a Cover Story in the New​Strait Times.  ​

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