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Complex missions require training and preparation. Held at the Caslav Air Force Base,  Sky Avenger 2018 was one of the advanced training exercises which helped Czech Gripen pilots prepare for missions. Czech and American pilots carried out 153 drills for air raids and aerial refueling during the exercise which concluded on June 29. 

Aside from the Czech Gripen, the L-159 Alca, the Mi-24/35 and Mi-171 (Czech) helicopters, seven F-16 Fighting Falcon and two KC-135 tankers (American) participated in this year’s Sky Avenger,clocking in over 215 flight hours.

The aircraft were put through complex missions simulating real life scenarios from potential foreign operations. Apart from the capabilities of the aircraft, the pilots’ were tested on their ability to coordinate with each other while using air navigation guides and AWACS early warning alliance aircraft.

The Czech army has strong relations with the Nebraska and Texan National Guard, and has been involved in various training events since 1993 with them, including a similar exercise in 2009. 

Read the full report here.        

Image Courtesy: afbcaslav.cz                                                       

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Six Hungarian Air Force Gripen practiced air-to-ground and air-to-air live firing last month at the Air Superiority 2018 exercise held at the Vidsel Air Base. 

The Vidsel Air Base, located just a hundred km from the Arctic Circle, is the largest firing range in Sweden as well as the European Union. Since it was their fourth visit, the Hungarian pilots were familiar with the air base. During their last visit in 2015, the pilots were trained for their first Baltic Air Policing mission. It was, in fact, their first major international mission in 70 years. 

The Air Superiority 2018 lasted for two weeks; in the first half of which the participants performed planned air-to-air and air-to-ground firings using AIM-9L type Sidewinder missiles, AGM-65 type air-to-ground missiles and Gripen's internal cannons.

One of the major goals of this exercise was to develop capabilities for Close Air Support missions which requires seamless coordination with forces on the ground.

Read the full story here

Image Courtesy: Dr. Lt. Colonel Toperczer​

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A full scale Gripen E model with the new Wide Area Display (WAD) was exhibited at the Rio International Defense Exhibition (RIDEX) by the Brazilian Air Force (FAB) last week. 

According to Major Aviador Manoel Carneiro, who was in charge of the FAB booth, "We have brought a fully interactive concept here. Each visitor will be able to get to know the strategic projects of FAB”. The full size replica of Gripen provided visitors with the unique opportunity of examining the fighter closely. Miroslav Kocian, Major-General of the Republic of Slovakia, was among the visitors impressed by the new version of the Gripen and the high end technologies that go into the smart fighter. 

RIDEX, held between 27 and 29 June in Rio Janeiro, enabled participants to present cutting edge products and technologies. 

AEL Sistemas showcased, along with WAD, the NVIS / HUDTM (Advanced Night Vision System / Head Up Display). 

The event had 9000 visitors, 90 exhibitors and was attended by Defence Minister Joaquin Silva. ​

Read the full story here.

At the end of the day, the person at the controls makes all the difference. Brazilian pilots will go through classes, presentations and protocols to prepare for flight tests of the Brazilian fighter that will take place at the Embraer headquarters in Gavião Peixoto, São Paulo.

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Natural predator

The Swedish Air Force Gripen in a summer flight over its natural habitat – Sweden’s unique lakes and forests.

Photo: Rich Cooper/COAP Media

Czech Gripen and SwAF's historic aircraft, enthralled viewers at the 12th Airlift Day in Mladá Boleslav. Thousands of ardent viewers attended the event - which takes place every 2 years - to witness first-hand the transition and evolution of fighter aircraft over the years.

The event began in the morning, and as the visitors poured in, they could see an array of fighter aircraft from World War II to the present. Among modern aircraft, the line was led by Czech Gripen, whose many twists and turns and manoeuvres were applauded by the audience. Additionally, planes like Boeing 737 version M and Casa, a transport aircraft, made their appearances. 

Read the full story here

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As a part of the Saab Experience at the Farnborough International Airshow, on display will be a full scale replica of the unique fighter concept Gripen E. Visitors can experience the Gripen E flight simulator which will be equipped with the latest wide area display (WAD), demonstrating some of the advanced technology and operational effectiveness built into the fighter.

Other interesting exhibits to look out for at the Air Show includes the Tactical Operations Command & Control System, 9Air C4I, and also the latest generation missile RBS15 which will be on display for the very first time. 

Saab will also showcase its highly advanced surveillance solutions, Global Eye. It is equipped with Airborne Early Warning & Control (AEW&C) that combines air, ground and maritime situational awareness in a single platform. 

There will be daily mini-talk sessions where Saab will present the capabilities of the Gripen fighter, EW suit Arexis, Global Eye and give insights into the development of RBS 15 missile system. Among the key-note speakers and presenters would be Mr Petter Bedoire, Head of EW Marketing & Sales, Sales Director, Mr Fredrik Follin, Mr Miguel Svensson, Director of technical sales support for missiles systems and Gripen Test Pilot Mr Mikael Olsson. 

Farnborough Air Show will be held between 16 and 22 July. Saab will be exhibiting at Stand OE14.

Know more about Saab’s participation at the Farnborough Air Show here.

The Finnish Air Force celebrated their centenary on the 6th of March, 2018. During the weekend of 16-17 June, the Finnish Air Force held an Airshow at Tikkakoski, close to Jyväskylä, to commemorate the milestone.

One of the biggest crowd pullers was the Gripen Full Scale Replica. Around 30 000 people attended the air-show so as to get a closer look at the aircraft. Display pilot “Sunshine” from Swedish Air Force Wing F21 putting up a scintillating show, much to the delight of the audiences.
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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". 

Read the full story here

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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​.

Read the full story here.

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