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AEL Sistemas has now delivered the third prototype of the Wide Area Display (WAD) for Gripen E/F which is being developed for the Brazilian Air Force. 

The Wide Area Display in Gripen E is a panoramic high-resolution screen (19 x 8 in) that allows a redundant and intelligent presentation of information across its entire length, with the capacity to receive inputs from multitask keys, the touchscreen or external interfaces. Using data fusion, it provides the pilot with the information needed, and is the main source of flight and mission information in the cockpit.

"The delivery of Model C prototype represents AEL´s commitment to technology absorption in the development of WAD for the next generation of Brazilian fighters. We deliver the prototype on schedule, enabling Saab engineers to continue their work towards the final integration of the aircraft,” says Sergio Horta, president of AEL Sistemas.

Last year, the Model B prototype was delivered by AEL. This prototype came with the final mechanics and hardware for use in the laboratory, simulator and aircraft (ground testing). After that, further enhancements were made to Model C. The new graphic card ensures an increased processing capacity and better image presentation. With its new mechanics, hardware, and software, Model C will be used in the development and qualification tests of the aircraft during flight mode.  

Read the full story here.

Image Courtesy: AEL Sistemas​

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“Gripen has operational capability that is second to none. When you package that with value for money in terms of acquisition and life cycle cost, and also industrial packages that Saab offers, I believe we have a platform that is perfect for the market segment we are pitching to,” says Richard Smith, head of Gripen marketing and sales.

Giving a status update on the sales prospect of Gripen E/F and Gripen C/D, Richard says that both variants are in demand. “We have a unique position in the market as we can offer two very different systems from the same pedigree in the market,” he adds.

About Switzerland, he says Saab is very positive about the outcome. “This is round two. This time the country is not just replacing the F5 fighter but also the F18 Hornet. We are expecting an RFI anytime soon.”

Saab has been present in Finland for a number of years and is currently working on a proposal for the country. In the UK and the US, Saab sees great potential for Gripen Aggressor sales. 

Saab has also been in dialogue with Bulgaria and Slovakia. “I am confident that Gripen would be perfect for these nations. They have two neighbors that operate Gripen C/D, so there is a scope of working together as well,” Richard says.

About India, one of the biggest market Saab is pitching to, Richard says that his team is working on a proposal. “We would submit a proposal ...

​Get to know the inside of the all new Saab Aeronáutica Montagens (SAM). The manufacturing facility will be responsible to produce structural parts like the tail cone, aerodynamic brakes, and wing box for the 36 Gripen fighters that are being developed for  the Brazilian Air Force.

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Erica Magnusson and Maritza Erlandsson who are working on the final assembly of Gripen, participated at the WorldSkills Event in Uppsala, Sweden recently. Both these women have graduated from top tier flight schools in Sweden before successfully applying for jobs at Saab.

About working at Saab, Erica believes that it is a company with many opportunities. "If I put in the effort, I know that Saab will back me up and help me sharpen my skills," she said.

Erica, on the other hand, is excited about the fact that she works on Gripen. "It feels great to be working with something that is at the leading edge, like when we work on the Gripen E fighter. When we run into problems we get together and talk it over to come up with a solution instead of trying to work it out alone," she said.

The contest in Uppsala involves young students testing their skills against one another in 40 occupational categories. The event aims at building interest and recruitment for vocational training among young students and professionals.

To read the full interview, click here.

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SKY'S THE LIMIT

Enabled by the latest available technology, Gripen gives the Royal Thai Air Force South Asias’s most agile swing-role fighter aircraft.

Photo. Katsuhiko Tokunaga ​​

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There are many noticeable changes that have been made to Gripen E which include integration of some of the most brilliant military science breakthroughs of the past few years.

Externally, the fighter boasts of a new, more powerful engine, increased range and a larger weapon load. The under-carriage of Gripen E has been moved to the wings, which means more fuel and weapons can be carried.

Internally, the systems software has undergone some major upheavals as well. The new EW system, MFS-EW (Multi Functional System) is based on wideband digital technology and digital radio frequency memory (DRFM) devices, gallium nitride (GaN) solid state active electronically scanned array (AESA) jammer transmitters and interferometric direction finding systems.

Read the full story here.

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Recently, the Czech Air Force successfully completed the MS20 capability upgrade to its fleet of Gripen fighter aircraft, greatly increasing its combat and communication capabilities. The upgrade is part of the Gripen design philosophy to evolve continuously and tailor solutions according to customer’s various needs.

One of the key features of the MS20 upgrade is that the Gripen has acquired air-to-ground capability, thanks to the integration of unguided and laser-guided bombs into the aircraft payload. There will also be a significant software update which permits the integration of NATO-standard Link 16 datalink and laser designator pods (LPDs). The LPDs will greatly aid air-to-ground missions.  

The MS20 upgrade is characterized by both software and hardware augmentations. Other key elements of the update include enhanced radar modes, electro-optical pods Litening III, and crypto-modules for fast, secure and efficient communication.

Jonas Hjelm, Saab’s Area Business Head, said, “We are very pleased with the success of this capability upgrade. We are honoured to have a long-term partner in the Czech Air Force.” After the update, “The aircraft is capable of addressing the demands of current and future threats, while meeting strict requirements”, according to Mr. Hjelm.

​Read the full story here.

How important is the technology transfer that is part of the Brazilian Gripen Programme? Between October 2015 and 2024, more than 350 Brazilian engineers and technicians from Saab’s partner companies, will go to Sweden to participate in courses and on-the-job training.


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As the Indian government sets about its journey of acquiring 110 new fighters this month, all eyes are on the various options available for the IAF.

Saab believes its Gripen E fighter to be the ideal solution for the challenges faced by the Indian defence forces. One of the most advanced multi-role fighters in the world, Gripen E has been designed to provide operational dominance and flexibility with superior mission survivability. The fighter offers an enviable 10-minute operational turnaround time, and is compatible with the latest weapons, sensors and mission systems.

Here are five specific reasons why Gripen E is the perfect fighter for India:

Technology Transfer

As per the recently announced RFI, out of the 110 fighter jets required by India, 85% will have to be built in the country under the "Make in India" program.  For Saab, transfer of technology is more than transferring assembly lines to India. From sharing  know-how to transforming their proposed India facility into a regional hub for Gripen, Saab's ToT offer envisions the overall growth of the Indian defence industry. Saab's successful ToT program in Brazil so far further proves that the company is committed to its strategic partnership policy with Gripen operating nations.

Multi-role capabilities

The RFI also mentions the requirement of day-and-night-capable, all-weather, multi-role combat aircraft. Gripen E is the most advanced multi-role fighter that has been designed to meet various demanding operational requirements of air forces today. The fighter can not only seamlessly shift ...

​The decision to acquire a fighter aircraft is based on multiple requirements of an air force. For a nation like India, with a large expanse of sea and land boundaries, one of the major requirements is 24*7 availability of its fighters.

Saab believes that a fighter does not belong in the hangars instead it is meant to spend as much time as possible in the air. And this is why Gripen has been designed to deliver high operational readiness.​ This is why Gripen has been designed to deliver high operational readiness. 

For Gripen, an operational turnaround for a typical air-to-air mission takes ten minutes using as less as six personnel and minimum support equipment. And this includes refueling and rearming time. A typical hot engine change can for instance be done in an takes less than an hour and a repair takes an hour.

Gripen also features STOL (Short Take-off and Landing) capabilities which means it can take-off and land on regular roads and not just runways. Capable to be operated out of road bases, a Gripen fleet can be at the ready all the time to guard the long borders in India.

Besides these features, Gripen is also equipped to conduct air-to-air refueling via the NATO standard probe-and-drogue system. Aerial refueling ensures that missions of up to eight or more hours can be flown.

Saab believes that in the end it is the practical applications that count the most, which is exactly why ...

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