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Swedish Air Force Gripen participated in the Finnish exercise Baana 2016 and practiced the art of landing and taking off from a road base.

As a part of the exercise, both Finish and Swedish fighters carried out many "touch and go" exercises. 

Gripen has been designed on the Cold War philosophy which means it has the unique ability to land and take off on short, actual roads and not just on regular runways. Gripen can take off and land in less than 600 meters.

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Five Czech Air Force Gripen fighters have been deployed for the NATO Air Policing mission of guarding the airspace of Iceland. These Gripen fighters will be stationed at the Naval Air Station in Keflavik from 29 September to 10 November. 

This is the fifth deployment of Czech Gripen fighter jets for a NATO air mission. Previously, Czech Air Force has sent its Gripen fighters to guard the airspace over Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania in 2009 and 2012. In 2014 and 2015, the Czech Gripen fighters were deployed for Allied missions in Iceland.

More news on the Czech Gripen's Icelandic Air Policing will follow. Until then, have a look at what the Czech Air Force has to say about Gripen.



Know more about the mission here​.​​​​​

Photo: Jörgen Nilsson​

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“The reason for Gripen E's success is relatively simple - it has been developed as a robust and cost-sensitive plane. The fighter builds on the successful design of earlier versions and is not completely redesigned,” a report in Stern says about why the Gripen fighter system became the choice of a number of air forces.

Gripen was developed keeping in mind the Cold War philosophy. The idea was to have a cost-efficient multi-role fighter which could take-off and land on short landing strips. Once developed, Gripen was not just used for the Swedish Air Force, but also exported to countries like Thailand, South Africa, the Czech Republic and Hungary. The latest big order from Brazil has made Gripen the most talked about fighter of the recent times.

The all new Gripen E is super flexible, has an enviable 10-minute operational turnaround time, and boasts of split avionics and a modular system. The split avionics also means that new upgrades and products can be easily added to Gripen at any point in future, without much hassle.

The report also talks about Gripen F, the two seater version of Gripen E that Sweden will produce jointly with Brazil. Gripen F will not just be used as a training aircraft, but also as a fighter for complex missions. After Brazil, India has also shown great interest in the Gripen fighter system. Saab has offered Gripen NG to India under the 'Make In India' initiative with transfer of technology.

Read the full story 

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Taking steps to further secure communication in the defence forces, the Czech Ministry of Defence plans to buy encryptors for the Gripen fighters, reports Echo24​

Encrypted communication prevents unauthorized interception by encoding transmissions sent out which can only be decoded by the intended receiver. Petr Medek, a spokesman for the Defence Ministry of Czech Republic, announced the ministry’s intentions of awarding the contract for the Gripen encryptors to Leonardo Finmeccanica, the Italian aerospace, defence and security company. 

According to reports, the Defence Ministry is looking to buy 30 units of  voice encyptors and 15 control panels. 

“This move will ensure logistical support for system operations at least until 2027,” Petr Medek says.

The order is expected to be delivered by November 2018.

The largest and the most popular air-defence technology event in the Czech Republic and Central Europe, ‘NATO Days in Ostrava & Czech Air Force Days’ was held on September 17 and 18, 2016, at Ostrava Leos Janacek Airport. A Czech Gripen fighter performed a spellbinding aerial display for visitors at the airshow. 

It was a treat for the eyes, with a variety of air and land technology shows displaying the extent of global defence technologies in a recreational manner. Perhaps the most attractive part of the programme belonged to the flying displays, with highlights such as Gripen’s elegant maneuvers – which included a quick take-off, rising to an immense height before falling into a dive and then somersaulting and spinning back close to the ground before rising back up and giving a display of its quick grace. Aerial displays such as the famed RAF Falcons’ choreographed descent from the skies and other enchanting flying displays also awed the large audience.

‘NATO Days in Ostrava’ has gained popularity among aviation enthusiasts all over the world due to its eye-catching exhibitions, flying displays, existing and latest aircraft displays, in-flight refueling exercises and a wide range of air and land defence equipment display used by NATO member countries. 

​During the recent celebrations marking the 90th anniversary of the Swedish Air Force, Defense & Aerospace Report​ took the opportunity to speak to Ulf Nilsson, Senior Vice President and Head of Aeronautics, Saab, on the philosophy that drives the making and development of Gripen E and what makes the approach fundamentally different.

Future technology is, of course, hard to predict even three to four years down the line. Looking back 10-15 years, the pace of technology development could be predicted, but not so with the coming of the digital revolution. “Earlier, the pace of development of technology was setting the pace of development of capabilities of the fighter system. Not anymore though. This is a big change and the development platform has to be able to cope with this kind of a change,” says Nilsson. 

Keeping that in mind, Gripen E is created to be relevant even if the technology of today becomes obsolete tomorrow. That is one of the best features of the new Gripen: its flexibility, preserved in a balanced design, makes it extremely adaptable. 

Built upon the strong base of proven C/D platform, Gripen E redefines air-defence systems with its exciting new capabilities and significant cost reduction. Not only does Gripen E have what it takes to fly safely, when it comes to tactical and functional developments, it has more of an ‘app-based development’ approach, which makes it easier to upgrade the aircraft from time to time. “This is one of the major leaps forward when ...


The upgrade known in Swedish term as MS20 involves a whole series of improvements and new functionality, both in terms of the aircraft itself and the ancillary support and training systems.​ Saab knows that its customers need a reliable, affordable and available fighter, against all threats, today and tomorrow. And that is why it makes Gripen. 

Gripen fighters have been very active at recent airshows around Europe. At the annual Czech International Air Fest (CIAF), the Czech Air Force preformed a stunning display with one of its Gripen fighters.

CIAF, the largest airshow in the Czech Republic, was held on the 3rd and 4th of September at the Hradec Kralove airport.​ More than 25 aircraft from 10 countries participated in the airshow.​

​Last weekend, at the Sanicole International Airshow in Belgium, visitors spent a lot of time with Gripen. The impressive Gripen E full scale replica was on show, while another Gripen took part in the flying display. Here are some snapshots from the airshow:

29047365183_110d986d32_z.jpgA Czech Gripen performing an aerial display.

29047355803_2bab8d4681_z.jpg29671965145_686ca1dfa5_z.jpgCrowd gathers at the Saab stall to see the Gripen E full scale replica.

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Visitors playing the Gripen Fighter Challenge game.

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Africa Aerospace and Defence (AAD 2016), one of the world's premier aerospace and defence exhibitions, kickstarts today. The exhibition will be held at AFB Waterkloof, Centurion, in the city of Tshwane, South Africa. Gripen will be on show, both in the air display and static park.

“With South Africa's acquisition of Gripen fighters, a very strong and long relationship was forged between Saab, Sweden and South Africa. And it’s a two-way relationship. Today, we see Gripen flying all over the world - South Africa, South America, Europe and Asia - with systems and technologies developed in South Africa. Saab's presence at AAD underlines this commitment to a long term relationship and technology transfer,” says Hans Rosen, Head of Saab Country Unit, Africa, EMEA.  

The first AAD was held in the year 1975. It was known as the Aerospace Africa civilian exhibition at that time. From a local aero-display and trade show held at a small airport to a full-fledged international airshow with participation of more than 20 countries, AAD has grown a lot in the last 42 years. 

AAD 2016 will be held between 14 and 18 September 2016. 14-16 September will be business days while the exhibition will be open for public on 17 and 18 September.

Know more about Saab’s participation in the exhibition here.

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Welcome to the official Gripen blog by Saab. This site features information and commentary about the Gripen fighter jet.