The versatile Gripen C/D
Gripen C/D of today is a fighter aircraft of exceptional capability and versatility. As seen in the picture below, it can perform a wide range of different missions, using all its sensors, data links, reconnaissance pods, air-to-air weapons and air-to-surface weapons. This is the solid ground on which Gripen E is built.
Designed to stay modern
The Swedish fighter aircraft industry, together with the Swedish Air Force and the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration, has a long tradition of working with continuous upgrades. Instead of building an aircraft and then conducting a major and very costly mid-life upgrade, Saab makes smaller critical improvements every two to three years. This development philosophy has several advantages.
Firstly, and most importantly, the fighter aircraft is always modern. Always. Please take one more look at the Gripen C/D slide above. Staying in the forefront of such advanced technology would not have been possible with only one mid-life upgrade. Secondly, the upgrades can be adapted to emerging requirements. If you make only one, big upgrade you must predict the future operational needs for the rest of the aircraft lifetime. Predicting the future like that is virtually impossible, but with Gripen you can adapt and shift focus when desired. Finally, upgrading costs are spread out over a long period, which is an advantage to any budget. It is important to note, however, that further upgrades and adaptations are not mandatory and will always remain a customer choice.
Every upgrade step in this ...
Saab is one of five companies that have been asked by the
Canadian government to provide, within six weeks, an outline of the technical
capabilities of their combat aircraft. Canada plans to replace its aging fleet
of F-18 jets before 2020. The country originally wanted to buy F-35s but is now
looking for more affordable aircraft, says a news report in Bloomberg.
According to the report, Public Works Minister Rona Ambrose
said in December that Canada would consider purchasing fighter aircraft other
than the F-35 after a report prepared by KPMG LLP showed the 65 planes would
cost C$45 billion ($43.8 billion) over 42 years.
The effort is part of a “rigorous examination of available
fighter-aircraft options on the market and how they could accomplish the
missions outlined in the Canada First Defence Strategy,” the government said.
Read the full story: Boeing, Lockheed Among 5 Fighter-Jet Makers Queried by Canada
On March 5, 2013, one of the chambers (Ständerat) in the Swiss
parliament voted on the Gripen procurement.
The voting was as follows:
- The Gripen contract was approved by a vote of 22-20.
- The Gripen Special procurement Fund was approved by 23-15.
To release the "spending brake" to allow an increase in the
spending ceiling for the procurement also required a vote. This vote was 23-19
(1 abstention). This needed an absolute majority, or 24 out of the 46
parliamentarians. So it was 1 short. The vote will be taken again after the
Nationalrat vote in June.
"This was a positive vote in the Swiss Ständerat. It was the first
important step in the political process for the procurement of Gripen. The
Ständerat voted with a majority for the procurement of the Gripen and for the
Gripen Special Fund Law. The process now moves to the larger chamber, the
Nationalrat, where the same points will be discussed firstly by the Security
Commission of the Nationalrat and then by the Nationalrat in the summer
session,” says Richard Smith, Regional Marketing Director – Europe Gripen
Marketing. “We have a great deal of respect for the entire political process
that is now on-going and are very optimistic about the opportunity for Gripen
Image Courtesy: Peter Liander
Saab moves ahead with its campaign in Brazil this week as it
presents a new offensive to offer the Gripen to Brazil, says a news report in
Eddy De La Motte, Director-General
of the Gripen campaign in Brazil said he was unsure of how President Dilma will
decide, but he said he had very strong arguments.
price of the product, the cost and the operational cooperation for a lasting
and beneficial partnership for both sides make our proposal very
competitive," he noted. "What we are proposing is the lowest cost,
the lowest operating costs and the best industrial cooperation which is a perfect
partnership at this time," he emphasized.
Read the full story: Saab Launches New Offensive To Offer The Gripen
The one billion kronor question is: "If all players involved in the Swedish fighter development need to shorten a full test program with 2 years and simultaneously achieve the results with one billion Swedish kronor less compared to earlier programs, then what do you do?"
Ola Rignell, Flight Test Director, Saab discussed the challenges in the way of carrying out the development and test of a much bigger program like Gripen E/F at a much lower budget, during a session on Flight testing
of Gripen E - the Next Generation Gripen, at the Aero India 2013
"One of the key strategies would be to form a joint project organization with the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration (FMV) and the Swedish Air Force. There should be one team, they should be co-located, they should participate and have full insight and they should try to run from start," he says.
The video captures Ola's entire presentation at the International seminar.
Red Flag 2013, the high intensity air to air combat exercise at Nellis was a great opportunity for the Swedish pilots to participate in various realistic, complex missions. Though they did months of preparations before the exercise, they were in for new challenges, new threats and difficult, hidden targets. It was also the first time Sweden exercised with the U.S. F-22. These videos capture the Gripens in action at the Red Flag 2013.
Gripen is the world’s most affordable next generation multirole fighter that provides small states with an edge in technology and bigger states with an edge both in technology and numbers, says a news report in Unity Media News Network.
According to the report, Gripen offers cutting edge technology at the best price. It has favorable flight characteristics, such as low drag properties, which enable faster and more efficient flight as well as either increased range or larger equipment payload.
The report also explains that the total-integration avionics makes sure that Gripen is easily upgradable. The software updates can change the aircraft’s performance and allow for the adoption of additional operational roles and equipment over time. Gripen’s software is continuously being improved and changed to add new capabilities.
Not only that, Gripen’s operaters have an access to its source code and technical documentation. This gives them the convenience to integrate additional munitions and equipment or to make other improvements to the aircraft, the report adds.
Read the full story:Saab JAS 39 Gripen : World’s most affordable next generation multirole fighter
Defence Issues, in a write up, captures the history of the Gripen program, basic data and operational characteristics along with weapons, sensors and datalinks.
The write up captures the genesis of the program dating back to the adoption of the delta-canard layout that Saab pioneered in the 1960s.
The write up focuses on the factors that went into the birth of the JAS program drawing its name from the specified requirements ((Jakt – fighter, Attack – attack, Spaning – reconnaissance).
The review of the history of Gripen points out the pioneering technologies that went into the making of the aircraft including the use of datalinks.
Flygvapnet pioneered the use of datalinks in the combat aircraft, fielding first versions on SAAB 35 Draken in mid 1960s. Gripen is equipped with four high-bandwidth, two-way datalinks, with a range of around 500 kilometers. This allows the exchange of targeting information and other data even when one of the aircraft is on the ground. One Gripen can provide data for four other aircraft, as well as get access to ground C&C systems and SAAB-Ericsson 340B Erieye “mini-AWACs” aircraft. It can also allow fighters to quickly and accurately lock on to target by triangulation of data from several radars. Another possibility includes one fighter jamming the target while another one tracking it, or several fighters using different frequencies at the same time to penetrate jamming easier.
The author concludes that the Gripen NG will be significantly cheaper than other 4.9 generation aircraft, such as Eurofighter Typhoon or Dassault Rafale, ...
The South African Air Force’s 93rd Birthday was marked by the customary Air Force day parade, an address by Maj Gen Malinga, an appearance by 28 Sqd and an amazing display of maneuvering a high speed Gripen.
The celebration that started with Maj Gen Malinga accepting an award from “Lead-SA”, ended with a beautiful fly over by Gripen which can be seen at the end of a video here.
According to a report in Pilot’s Post, Mark Gentles treated the spectators to a magnificent display of skill in a solo sequence in a PC7 Astra and Col “Blokkies” Joubert in a breathtaking display of high speed maneuvering in the J-39 Gripen.
Read the full story: South African Air Force Celebrates their 93rd Birthday
Welcome to the official Gripen blog by Saab. This site features information and commentary about the Gripen fighter jet.
The Gripen Blog shares stories and discussions on the Gripen aircraft. The Blog does not vouch for the authenticity of the reports from other publications that have been quoted.
The reference to articles and news reports does not imply endorsement or validation of the views of the authors of the stories.