Tags: Swedish Air Force
Sweden has decided to contribute a squadron of Gripen fighter jets and a mine-sweeping ship to NATO Rapid Reaction Force (NRF), reports The Local.
In 2014, around 120 Swedish service personnel will join the NRF. An additional eight Gripen fighters and an amphibious unit will be sent by 2015.
The initial contribution of eight planes and the minesweeper will be a part of the NRF's reserve forces. "This means that they will be available for deployment as part of the NRF reserve force during this period. They will be in Sweden, but they will be ready for duty," Sweden's Defence Minister Karin Enström told the TT news agency.
The NRF is made up of land, air, naval and Special Forces units committed by NATO nations for a twelve-month period. Partner countries can contribute to the NRF once their participation has been approved by the North Atlantic Council and the forces designated meet the required NATO standards.
Read the full story: Swedish Fighter jets to Join Nato Response Force
According to Saab, a focus on realistic requirements has helped the Swedish industry and government teams integrate weapons on the Gripen faster and at lower cost than similar efforts elsewhere.
In an Aviation Week report, Bill Sweetman talks about the weapons from outside that have been successfully integrated with Gripen so far in a cost effective way.
The list includes the Raytheon GBU-49 Enhanced Paveway II laser-plus-GPS bomb and Diehl Iris-T infrared air-to-air missile (AAM), which were integrated in 2006-09 and the flight testing of Thales Digital Joint Reconnaissance Pod for South Africa's Gripens in 2011.
According to Gideon Singer, technical director for Gripen exports and Lisa Abom, head of the Saab project office for engineering and weapons, Saab devotes 14% of integration costs to planning and coordination.
“One lesson is to reach early agreement,” they said. This means defining and clearly interpreting requirements, limitations and the approach to testing.
This year in June, Saab conducted its first test firing of the version of the Meteor radar-controlled air-to-air missile, developed for mass production. The test firing demonstrated the separation from the aircraft and the link function between the aircraft and missile, as well as the missile's ability to lock in on the target. The test firing was also used to verify the command support that has been developed for the pilot.
Sweden will be the first air force to field the new missile, with the Gripen MS 20 package in 2015. That upgrade will also include the GBU-39 Small ...
Saab has received an order from the Swedish Materiel Administration (FMV) to provide technical system support to the Swedish Armed Forces next year, reports the UPI.
The order is a further option under a previously signed agreement with the FMV for performance-based support and maintenance of Gripen. This contract allowed additional orders until 2016.
The technical support package includes support for the Swedish Armed Forces and FMV in the form of operational and technical support, equipment follow-up, proposed modifications, continuous updates, environmental technology plus warehouse operations for replacement units.
"With this order, Saab contributes to an effective and accessible Gripen operation for Sweden in the coming year," says Lars-Erik Wige, head of Saab's Support and Services business area.
The order is worth SEK 107 million.
Read the full story: Sweden extends Saab support for Gripens
Image Courtesy: Frans Dely
How do you build a super computer in a biscuit box? That about sums up the challenge of creating super small, super tough and super sensitive radar systems such as the ES-05 Raven radar for the Gripen E being produced by Selex ES.
“The great challenge of a radar system is that it combines the mechanical challenges, electrical challenges, software challenges and physical challenges of all types, all in a very small volume, in a very demanding environment. And you have to basically build a super computer in a biscuit box,” Mark Smith, VP of technology at Selex ESW says.
The European Defence Agency (EDA) trialled pooled aerial refueling in which three Swedish Gripen were refueled by an Italian KC-76, reports IHS Jane’s.
In March 2012, European Defence ministers assigned EDA with the task of working on Air to Air Refueling (AAR) capability as a priority. EDA then developed an approach on increasing overall capacity, reducing fragmentation of the fleet, and optimizing the use of assets.
According to the EDA, the collective AAR certification campaign is the first of its kind; it allows several Member States to obtain the necessary technical and operational clearances in the minimum amount of time for a maximum amount of receivers.
The benefits of a collective AAR include facilitating the procedure for Member States, improving interoperability and saving time, human resources and costs.
The trials took place at Decimomannu Air Base on the island of Sardinia from 5 to 12 September.
"The Gripen C/D is less expensive to develop and to operate than the Gripen A/B which was cheaper than the Viggen. Also the Gripen E/F will be cheaper to develop and produce and operate as compared to the C/D,” said Hakan Buskhe, President and CEO, Saab at the Paris Air Show earlier this year.
So what makes the latest version of Gripen less expensive?
Matti Olsson, Head of Strategic & Business Development Production at Saab explains the design philosophy and the approach that leads to the production of a better Gripen in a cost effective manner over time.
“At the end of the Cold War, it was clear that the future defence budgets would be less generous. Hence Saab intensified its efforts to create a smart aircraft to distinguish itself from competitors in the big producer nations,” Olsson says.
Through the entire production process, purchasing and operational costs have been kept lower than for twin-engine fighters. According to Olsson, Gripen E’s flight and mission-critical software systems are kept completely separate from each other. This allows easier upgrades as any change in one component does not affect the other components.
“To keep the production process efficient, the assembly team is trained to be independent, to perform quality checks themselves, without outside supervision,” Olsson adds.
Read the full story here.
Image Courtesy: Stefan Kalm
Gripen becomes a reconnaissance aircraft with just one touch of the pilot, says an article in forsvarsmakten.
The Swedish Air Force has used reconnaissance aircrafts for many years to get information about what happens around the Swedish border. During old days, there were specially designated aircraft for such reconnaissance missions. Today it is the multi-role fighter Gripen that controls the Swedish border from the sky.
By pressing a button, the pilot can set Gripen in a mode that turns the aircraft into an outstanding reconnaissance aircraft. If an aircraft is supposed to be used in a reconnaissance mission, it has to be equipped with extra sensors. An aircraft always carries a radar and a camera, but to be able to collect more information during a reconnaissance mission, it has to be equipped with a Modular Reconnaissance Pod System (MRPS) and Laser Designator Pod (LDP).
With the, MRPS, a pilot can take high resolution photos and the LDP helps filming in both daylight and in darkness. Depending on the objective of the reconnaissance mission, more sensors can be used to get excellent pictures. Gripen has proven itself to be a very reliable platform for reconnaissance and will continue to be the eye in the sky for many years to come.
Read full story:Spaning ger aning
Image Courtesy: Frans Dely
"I have flown about 40 different fighters and none of them obey me as precisely as Gripen," says Richard Ljungberg, chief test pilot at Saab talking about the advantages of the multi-role aircraft.
Ljungberg has flown all versions of Gripen, from A to D through to the latest two-seater Gripen F Demonstrator in his 16 years of test pilot career.
Ljungberg explains that flying a mission is different from just flying a plane. A mission needs training and more concentration. “Gripen is so responsive and easy to fly, the pilot can concentrate fully on performing the mission,” he says.
“Gripen is like skiing with carving skis while flying any other aircraft is like skiing with the old traditional downhill skis.”
Read the full story here.
Image Courtesy: Swiss Air Force
Sweden, along with Finland and Ukraine will join NATO Response Force (NRF) and participate in ‘Steadfast Jazz’, a military exercise, to be held next month, reports forsvarsmakten.
forsvarsmakten quoted Dennis Gyllensporre, Major General, Head of Plans & Policy Department at Swedish Armed Forces saying that participation in the NATO’s Response Forces Pool would give the participating staff an opportunity to be a part of a larger and more complex exercise as compared to national or bilateral exercises.
Steadfast Jazz is the largest exercise NATO has had in the last seven years. The objective of the exercise is to give the participating nations and members an opportunity to train and perform operations together, and enhance their interoperability. It will be conducted in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland.
Exercise Steadfast Jazz has been scheduled to be held between 2 and 9 November 2013.
Read the full story: Försvarsmaktens bidrag till Natos insatsstyrka
Image: Frans Dely
Gripen performed warm up exercise at the Axalp 2013 last week. The live firing demonstration however was cancelled later due to bad weather. The video shows Gripen practising amidst the mountains of Axalp.
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