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What happens when a multi-role fighter aircraft like Gripen and a state-of-the-art Air-to-Air missile like MBDA’s Meteor come together? They make for one of the strongest and the most lethal combinations in air-warfare. 

During modern warfare, the ability to strike with pinpoint precision from beyond the horizon is very crucial. Let’s take a look at how Meteor, which is considered to be the best Beyond-Visual-Range Air-to-Air Missile (BVRAAM) available today, does exactly that. 

With an operational range of over 100 km, a BVRAAM Meteor missile can travel at a speed of over Mach 4, which is over four times the speed of sound. The missile can accelerate mid-way, leaving very little chances of the target to escape. In fact, it has a no-escape zone of over 60 km which is known to be the largest among air-to-air missiles. 

Meteor is capable of engaging targets ranging from agile jets and UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) to cruise missiles, simultaneously and autonomously in any given weather. 

More features that make Meteor capable include its two-way data link ability, active radar seeker, and the solid-fueled Ramjet motor. The two-way data link allows the pilot to target and re-target the missile even after it has been launched. The active radar seeker enhances the missile’s tracking ability, and the ramjet propulsion system gives Meteor its high-speed performance and the energy to defeat fast, moving targets at long range.

Meteor is an “all-up-around” weapon and is not only lethal, fast, and ...

​Czech Gripen fighters have had some really interesting painted tails in the last ten years. Here are our favorites.

The “Cat Eye” 

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This great looking Gripen was presented to celebrate 10,000 flight hours of the Czech Gripen fleet in 2010. It featured a special tiger on the tail and cat eyes on the canards. 

The “Picasso”

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This brightly coloured tiger scheme was introduced just before NATO Tiger Meet 2013. Due to the rainbow colours, this scheme made Gripen stand out at all the airshows and events it participated.

The “Skull”

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At the NATO Tiger Meet 2014, the Czech Air Force came up with another special tiger marking, only this time, it had a human skull sketch as well, giving a dramatic effect. 

The “Wildcat”

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Ranked as one of the best tiger painted aircraft at the NATO Tiger Meet 2017, this one features a partially covered face of supermodel Simona Krainová and a tiger. Grace and power, all in one package!

Marking a century

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To commemorate the celebration of a 100 years of the Czechoslovak Air Force, one of the Czech Air Force Gripen fighters got a makeover before the NATO Tiger Meet last year. With a picture of the fleet against the Czech flag colours, and 100 years written on top, this one was a break from the usual tiger motif.  

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It was ten years ago when the Hungarian Air Force Gripen were first sent notification for a quick reaction alert. A Honvedelem.hu​ reports explains in detail how the Hungarian Gripens are used to check airspace violations.

NATO Air Policing ensures the integrity of Allies’ airspace and protects Alliance nations by maintaining 24/7 Air Policing. All airspace protection missions are carried out under the NATO Integrated Air and Missile Defence System (NATINAMDS).  

As far as the coordination during air policing is concerned, NATO’s Combined Air Operations Centres (CAOCs) take care of that: the northern part of Europe is managed from Uedem, Germany, and the southern part from Torrejon, Spain.

Detecting airspace violation

The CAOCs have flight plans for every day and they monitor each and every movement in their assigned skies. When they notice a mysterious plane or a familiar plane deviating from its route or failing to make radio connection, they raise an alarm. 

Pilots with aircraft and missiles are kept at the ready 24*7. So when the Hungarian Air Force units receive an alert, the Gripen fighters are scrambled at the earliest. They approach the target plane and try to make a connection as per the protocols. Once verified, the target plane is escorted to an airbase or the border.

Alpha or Tango?

There are two kinds of alarms in context to airspace violations. When a real threat is detected, the unit on duty has to work on the 'Alpha command'. ...

​This month, the Royal Thai Air Force (RTAF) celebrated Children's Day at Don Muang on 12 January. Gripen's aerial display was the center of attraction for all the young visitors at the Air Base. 


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Saab is proud to participate in the 12th edition of Aero India in Bengaluru, organized by Indian Ministry of Defence and showcase its world-leading capabilities in air-power, aircraft and surveillance systems, as well as digital air traffic management solutions. And this time, we have quite a few exciting things planned for Gripen E fans in India!

What to expect at the Saab stall at Aero India 2019?

At the Saab stall, there will be a Gripen E simulator that will give a feel of the real Gripen E cockpit, plus there will be a Full Scale Replica (FSR) of Gripen E as well. On display will also be weapon systems that make Gripen the formidable fighter that it is: the MBDA Meteor, the RBS-15 long range ASM and Taurus, the long-range air-to-surface precision cruise missile. Not just that, Saab will also showcase its Gripen Maritime version to share its capabilities and performance.

Win a trip to Sweden, the home of Gripen

Building even more excitement around Aero India 2019, Saab brings the "Gripen Warriors Contest". This contest is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for Indian Gripen fans to win a trip to Linkoping, Sweden - the home of Gripen.

The contest is divided in three parts. You need to answer questions on Gripen E at the first two levels, Amateur and Professional. The third and the final level - Ace, will be all about your online gaming skills. You need to submit videos of your flight ...

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“Everybody wants to fly a Gripen,” said Wing 7 deputy commander Group Captain Prachya Tippayarat, commenting on the abundance of potential recruits who want to become future Gripen pilots.

How did Gripen become a prized Thai fighter?

From forming a full-fledged fighter fleet to completing 10,000 flying hours, let’s take a look at the many milestones Royal Thai Air Force (RTAF) Gripen has achieved over a remarkable 10-year journey.

It all started in 2007 when the RTAF decided to introduce Gripen fighter aircraft into their Air Force. It was on February 2011 when the RTAF received their first batch of six Gripen fighters- two Gripen Cs and four Gripen Ds. However, another supplementary contract had already been signed in 2010 for a second batch of six Gripen C fighters which was delivered three years later in 2013.

In June 2011, The RTAF decided to carry out their plan to integrate a Network-Centric Defense Force to enhance interoperability between their military branches. On 11 September 2013, nearing the completion of the Gripen contract signed in 2010 with Sweden, the RTAF announced the Gripen Integrated Air Defense system as a fully operational part of the Air Force at its home base in Surat Thani.

According to 701 Squadron Wing Commander Kritsana Sukdee, the RTAF Gripen unit is “small, but powerful”, as represented by its Tiger Shark emblem. He also points to the importance of regular joint training with other Thai air force squadrons, noting: “There is ...

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The Gripen E-series is for customers who face more pronounced threats or have wider territories to secure. With an ability to constantly evolve, Gripen E is built to keep up with all sort of challenges that a future battle scenario may throw at a pilot. But what exactly helps Gripen deal with the most advanced threats?

Face high-threat environment head-on

Contested airspaces, integrated air defence systems, these are modern battlefield environments that call for the most modern fighter systems. Gripen E/F carries a variety of both active and passive measures to disrupt enemy efforts and protect itself and other friendly units. The new Electronic Warfare (EW) system allows disruption of the enemy’s ability to function effectively. Its goal is to either assist in the destruction of enemy assets or confuse them altogether. Designed to handle the new age signal environment, this EW system, with its  ultra wide band digital receivers, advanced signal processing and extensive processing capacity, can distinguish the real threat signals from others.

Detect First

To succeed in any mission up in the sky, information is the key. But what is even more important is the time at which you get this information. Did your enemy sense you before you sensed them? Gripen E/F reduces its likelihood of being detected by relying on its passive sensors, or through active jamming. It utilizes all available data in the battle cloud, including that sent by other air, land or sea-based units, and fuses it locally ...

​For all you desktop pilots out there wondering what it's like to fly Gripen E – one of the world’s most advanced fighter, wait no longer, soon it will be your turn.​

What happens when a Gripen pilot reaches high altitude and the cabin pressure drops all of a sudden? It can actually have fatal consequences, and therefore it is very important to have systems in place that detect such scenarios in advance and take measures to protect the pilot.

Recently, as a part of Gripen E testing, a number of tests were conducted to verify these systems. Prototype 39-9 onwards, Gripen E has several new systems installed, including an On-Board Oxygen Generating System (OBOGS) and anti-g system.

Two different pressure chambers were used to conduct these tests; one simulated the cabin in the aircraft and the other simulated a non-pressurized space (device space), where OBOGS was mounted. A test doll with a respiratory simulator was used at first to conduct a few tests. This was followed by a test pilot stepping in to do corresponding tests and evaluate the functioning of these systems.

The tests were further enhanced by usage of explosive decompression, simulating the sudden drop in cabin pressure at high altitudes. Low pressure like this could happen in case of an explosion or loss of the aircraft hood. If this happens, the system will quickly detect it, and also take the necessary steps to protect the pilot.

"The focus was to verify that the system gave the correct pressure to the oxygen mask and G-suit depending on the actual altitude. In addition, it was checked that the oxygen level that the system generates ...

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With advancements of technologies in the field of defence taking place at a rapid rate, combat and conflict situations will only get more complicated in future. The missiles are going to be bigger, better. What a fighter needs is survivability that is effective.

Enhanced Survivability Technology (ESTL)​, with its modular structure, offers efficient self-protection for virtually any type of fixed-wing aircraft on a mission-to-mission basis. Missiles of today maybe smart, but ESTL - together with the MAW (Missile Approach Warning) sensors, and AIM-9 and AIM-120 interface - acts as a powerful shield against them.

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The Missile Approach Warning system (MAW) provides rapid, accurate detection and tracking data of approaching missiles.

BOP, the lightweight pyrotechnical dispenser, boasts of a forward firing capability enabling superior protection against latest missiles. BOL, on the other hand, is a lightweight electromechanical dispenser holding efficient chaff or IR payloads. Together with BOP, it gives ESTL an advanced countermeasure dispensing capability.

ESTL provides covert sustainable pre-emptive dispensing, missile warning, forward firing of flares, and cocktail dispensing. All these capabilities have been incorporated into the form-factor of a missile utilizing the well-established AIM-9 Sidewinder and AIM-120 AMRAAM interfaces and characteristics for lean aircraft integration.

ESTL offers state-of-the-art self-protection against 1st, 2nd and 3rd generation IR- seekers. A standard, AIM-9 Sidewinder and AIM-120 AMRAAM, interface makes it possible to share ESTL units among the aircraft of an entire fleet, which mean better internal coordination during missions. Not just that, ESTL can handle up to ...

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