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SwAF Gripen at the Siauliai air base, Lithuania

Last week, four Swedish Air Force Gripen were at Šiauliai, Lithuania to participate in the Baltic Region Training Event 22 (BRTE22), reports the Forsvarsmakten Blog

The training event includes search and rescue missions, practice of standard interoperability and cooperation and coordination procedures. Air-to-air combat training and air-to-air refuelling were conducted on both days.

“It is an important exercise that gives us a lot of experience as we collaborate with other aircraft types with different capabilities," says Jörgen Axelsson, F17 division.

The first BRTE happened in 2008. The exercise aims at training personnel on rotational Baltic Air Policing duties and improving interoperability and takes place three times a year.

The two day training event took place on 29 and 30 September.

Read the full story here​.

Image Courtesy: Thomas Mårtensson​ Swedish Armed Forces



Two JAS 39 Gripen of the Swedish Air Force landed at the Hosio highway in Finland on Wednesday, 23rd September. The landing was part of Baana 2015 jointly conducted by Finland and Sweden. Gripens, part of the 211th fighter division, took off from Kallax and landed successfully even though the weather conditions were not favourable. The pilots conducted a visual landing without the help of any technical aids.

Sweden and Finland have been collaborating on a variety of air exercises since the early 2000’s but this exercise was historical as it was the first time Gripen pilots landed on a highway strip. Along with the Gripens, two F-18 Hornets from the Finnish Air Force took part in the exercise.

After the landing the four aircraft underwent inspection and then took off for a joint flight session.

Read the full story here.

Image courtesy: Jarmo Lindberg

The Swedish government has appointed Major General Micael Bydén as the Supreme Commander for Sverker Goranson.  

Micael Bydén started his career as a second lieutenant in the naval mine and boat service at Härnösands Coastal Artillery Regiment (KA 4, Gothenburg). But he always dreamt of flying and so started getting his training in Ljungbyhed to become a fighter pilot. He then served in Uppsala, Soderhamn, Lulea, Washington DC, Linköping and Afghanistan and was appointed as the Swedish Air Force Chief Major General in 2012.

“I accept the assignment with great respect. I look forward to working with the Armed Forces personnel and developing a military defense that meets society's demands,” says Micael Bydén.

Swedish Armed Forces appointed its first Supreme Commander in 1939 after the Second World War. The aim was to create a stronger system by appointing a manager who would take overall responsibility for all the elements of the Armed Forces.

Supreme Commander plays a vital role in making key decisions on the allocation resources to solve various tasks. Other important decisions include actions on Armed Forces Units, weapon procurement and training of new recruits.

Mats Helgesson succeeds Micael Bydén as the new Air Force chief Major General.

Read the full story here

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Two Gripen fighters from F 21 Norrbotten Wing of the Swedish Air Force will arrive at Hosio in Finland tomorrow to participate in a live air exercise dubbed Baana-2015.

The Finnish Hornets and the Swedish Gripen will train together in this exercise. The collaboration with the Swedish Air Force comes under a Cross Border Training (CBT) scheme. The exercise also marks the first CBT mission flown from a road base.

Daily flying takes place between 9 a.m. and 11 p.m. between September 21 and 25. One of the main goals of the exercise involves the dual and solo operations from a road base in both night and day conditions.

Read the full story here​​.

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Last week, Swedish Air Force pilots trained for night flying as a part of the Air Force Exercise 2015, reports

During the Exercise, the 212 Fighter Squadron which was stationed at the Ärna air base located at the north-west of Stockholm, had a busy time. The squadron was divided into two fighter groups during the exercise. One was the day-time fighter group and the other was the night-time fighter group. Both the Groups were assigned four Gripen fighters each. Here are a few images from the night flying exercises conducted by the fighter group.

Image Courtesy: Forsvarsmakten

Read the full story here​.

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The Air Force Exercise 2015 came to an end last week. The exercise which focuses on national defense, was conducted in the south-eastern Sweden including Gotland.

“At the Air Force Exercise 2015, we practice the whole chain, from the air tactical command orders to the execution of the mission. The exercise is intense and we operate round the clock. On the first day of the exercise, we were given a war like scenario, and our task was to stop the enemy, says SwAF pilot Stefan Kaarle.

According to Stefan Kaarle, the exercise is a good platform to practice everything that can be done. The participating pilots get to learn about their strengths and weaknesses as well.

The first Air Force Exercise was held in 2010. It is part of a continuous series of exercises over time aimed at increasing Sweden’s national defence capability.

About 1500 personnel participated in the exercise. Air Force Exercise 2015 was conducted between 28 August and 1 September.

Read the full storyhere.

Image Courtesy: Forsvarsmakten​

​​​Lars Löfdahl, 43, from Örbro, Sweden, dreamt of flying a Gripen ever since he was a child. So when Saab announced a competition earlier this year with the prize of a flight in Gripen, Lars could not miss it. He gave it a shot and amidst 2000 entries, he was declared the winner.

Lars getting dressed in flight gear 

Pilot André showing Lars the flight route

Lars getting into Gripen

Lars taking off for the first time in a Gripen

Pilot André and Lars after the flight​

13 August 2015 was his day. He flew to Linköping and after a short introduction to Saab, he had a routine medical examination. This was followed by a briefing from test pilot, André Brännström on what he could expect. "The conditions today are perfect" the seasoned test pilot remarked.

The competition was designed with the objective of giving people a new, correct representation of Saab. People think of cars when they think of Saab. Though, that side of the business was sold in the mid 1990's, people still associate Saab with cars. 

"A plan was put into place to explore how we could give those people a new impression of Saab. As part of this we wanted to start a conversation with the public on safety and security, and what it means to them" remarked Gustaf Ekelund, Vice President and Head of Brand. A competition was thought of and the prize had to be something that could demonstrate Saab's technology in action: A ...

​SwAF pilots conducted a Gripen flypast to mark the occasion of the National Day in Sweden last month.

National Day is observed in Sweden on 6 June every year. It is celebrated in honour of two historical events. King Gustav Vasa was elected on this day in 1523 and later in the year 1809, Sweden adopted a new constitution on the same day.

Here are some images of the Gripen flypast on the National Day 2015:

Image Courtesy: Norrbottens Flygflottilj F 21​​

Saab has received an order for spare parts for Gripen E from the Swedish Defence Material Administration (FMV). The order is part of the Gripen E framework agreement which was signed between Saab and FMV in February 2013. The order value amounts to approximately SEK250 million and the order was booked as order intake in the second quarter of 2015.

The order comprises spare parts, such as components and devices, for Gripen E. Delivery is expected to take place in conjunction with initial aircraft delivery.

Read the full story here.

Swedish Air Force Gripen escorting USAF B52 over the Baltic Sea

SwAF Gripen participated in the annual multinational exercise BALTOPS (Baltic Operations) which came to an end last week. Besides Gripen, participating countries included Finland, Denmark, Norway, Belgium, Canada, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.

BALTOPS is NATO’s multinational maritime exercise which is being conducted since 1971 and Sweden has participated on 23 occasions so far. BALTOPS 2015 was led by the US and NATO, and was conducted in the Baltic Sea. This year, the exercise had participation from 17 nations with about 5600 men, 60 surface vessels and boats, 50 combat aircraft, a Polish Navy submarine and helicopters.

BALTOPS provides an effective platform for the U.S. Navy, NATO, and non-NATO participants to work together and develop mutual understanding and hone their maritime operational skills. The training exercises which include electronic warfare, air control and shallow water undersea warfare are targeted towards knowing the sea well and achieving interoperability among the participating forces.

BALTOPS 2015 was conducted between 5 and 20 June.

Read more about BALTOPS here.

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