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It is 10:25 in the morning at Čáslav air base and the sunrays are only just beginning to stream through the morning fog. There is no wind, all one can hear is the whistling sound of two Gripen fighters leaving their hangar. Soon, the whistle turns into a roar as the fighters ascend towards the sky. This is how a typical morning at the air base looks like.

The Czech Republic has been using Gripen system for over ten years to protect its airspace. The country also uses the fighters for NATO missions in countries like Iceland.

"The fighters are on constant standby to identify, escort, and if necessary, fight invasion of Czech airspace. Additionally, they also provide support to civil aviation, including escorting and providing guided landing of civilian aircraft, in case of technical failure or bad weather conditions,” says Jan Ducha, Ground Personnel commanding officer of the Czech Air Force.

Recounting his experience at this year's NATO Tiger Meet exercise in Saragosa, Spain, Jan says that Gripen is very easy to use and requires less staff as compared to other similar aircraft. Other countries participating with other aircraft systems brought up to 25 people per aircraft. To fly a Gripen, one needs only one pilot, one engineer and a mechanic (per aircraft), Jan adds. 

"What use is an aircraft of, if it is in a hangar, waiting for spare parts or if you need so much staff to attend to it that you cannot afford to fly ...

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Saab is in the process of responding to an Indian Navy request for information (RFI) with Gripen Maritime that is it has been developing with UK and Brazilian engineers, reports Jane's.

Speaking at the Gripen Annual Seminar in Stockholm, Jerker Ahlqvist, head of the Gripen programme, said that Saab was confident about the potential of Gripen Maritime and hopefully it would become a full development programme.

The Gripen Maritime, is currently in its concept stage. According to Saab, there will be 95% commonality with Gripen E and F, which means Gripen M will share their exceptional lifetime system affordability. “We are still in the phase of concept studies at the moment, and we are evaluating the market needs. We have used UK engineers with Harrier experience in the past, and now we have Brazilian engineers working on the project,” Jerker said.

Another report in DefenseUpdate.in, says that the Indian Navy plans to procure 57 fighters for a net worth of about US $12 billion and the selection of the aircraft would depend on what kind of launch system will be used aboard the new carrier which is currently under construction.

Gripen Maritime will have a strengthened undercarriage, bigger brakes, and a beefed-up tail hook along with advanced data link and extensive electronic warfare self-protection suite that can be configured to meet specific user requirements. Gripen Maritime is intended for both CATOBAR as well as STOBAR operations. "Gripen is designed for narrow roads, and so would be perfect ...

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Saab has offered new fully NATO-interoperable Gripen C/D fighter aircraft to Bulgaria, reports Reuters.

"Sweden has submitted a highly competitive offer for new fully NATO-interoperable Gripen C/D fighter aircraft," Saab says. "A new fleet of Gripen aircraft can be delivered to the Bulgarian Air Force within a short time of contract signature."

Besides Sweden, Bulgaria has received offers from Italy and Portugal as well. According to Reuters sources, a working group will examine these offers by the end of the month, after which further negotiations will be conducted with the preferred bidder.

Bulgaria is looking to replace its ageing fleet of Russian Mikoyan MiG-29 ‘Fulcrums’ and Sukhoi Su-25 ‘Frogfoots’. The Bulgarian government approved the acquisition of a squadron of new multirole fighter aircraft a year ago. The replacements are expected to arrive between 2018 and 2020.

Read the full story here.

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​Major General Mats Helgesson talks about the meteor missile integration to the Swedish Air Force Gripen and why it is an important capability. ​​


​​​​Last week, Swedish Air Force conducted mobile readiness exercise on a public road in the south western part of Sweden. Guests, from both Sweden and outside the country were invited to watch the exercise.

Video Courtesy: Swedish Air Force

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Next week, Saab will participate at the Langkawi International Maritime & Aerospace Exhibition (LIMA), the largest show of its kind within the Asia Pacific region.

Saab will be present with chalets at both the Aerospace and Maritime sites at the event, where visitors can learn about its key products and solutions.

LIMA 2017 will be held between 21 and 25 March. An RTAF Gripen has been scheduled to perform aerial displays on the first four days of the event. 

Besides Gripen, Saab products on display include GlobalEye, Swordfish MPA, A26 Submarine, Sea Wasp and 9LV CS. 

To know more about Saab's participation at the event and to know Gripen display schedule, visit here​.

Richard Smith, Head of Marketing, Gripen, summarises the recently held annual Gripen seminar.

During the seminar, Richard and Jerker Ahlqvist head of Gripen programme, talk about the current status of the Gripen E programme, the model based technology behind Gripen E development, Gripen C/D MS20 upgarade, Gripen M, and the opportunities in the global market.

Watch the seminar here​.​

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Gripen E's first test flight will be conducted during the second quarter of this year," says Jerker Ahlqvist head of Gripen programme.

During the annual Gripen seminar yesterday, Jerker explained that Saab’s new work methods with model-based-design is proving to be very successful. 

“As we prepare for Gripen E’s first test flight, we see that any software corrections can be easily implemented now. We can quickly make a change and introduce a new software load to the aircraft within days. This is something that previously took weeks or even months to undergo. It gives us the confidence that we are on the right track and the programme will run as per the schedule,” he said.

Saab is building two more test aircraft which are at various stages of production. Aircraft 39-8 is currently in ground test. The second test aircraft has entered the stage of final assembly.

About Gripen M, Jerker said that it is at a conceptual stage. “We are working with Brazilian engineers on a concept study of Gripen M. We are also in the process of responding to an RFI from India. We believe that Gripen M has good potential and can hopefully turn into a full development programme at a later stage.”

Jerker presented the Gripen seminar along with Richard Smith, Head of Marketing, Gripen, who gave an overview of the position of Gripen in the market today.

"The market looks optimistic for Gripen right now, and it comes down to getting ink on paper," Richard ...

​Srinjoy Chowdhury, Senior Editor at Times Now​, who flew Gripen at Aero India 2017, says it was an experience of a lifetime.

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Vayu’s Angad Singh strapped into a Saab Gripen at Aero India 2017, for a ‘hands on’ experience of a lifetime!

“Arm seat,” says a voice in my ear. This is the point of no return, as I head to Yelahanka’s 3-kilometre runway in the rear seat of a Saab Gripen D. I depress the catch that secures the ejection seat arming mechanism and push the switch from the ‘safe’ position to ‘armed.’ This simple action, more than anything in the past ninety-odd minutes, drives home the reality of what is about to happen.

“Seat armed,” I reply, trying my darndest to sound like a fighter pilot. I am not certain I succeeded. 

Waves of heat radiate off the asphalt runway, baked by the midday sun. Holding short to the north side of the runway as we line up are two Tejas LCA trainers, readying to depart after us. Behind us and lined up to the right of the centreline is another two-seat Gripen D. We wait for what seems like an eternity, made worse by the nerves that seem to amplify the discomfort of my g-suit. In reality it was probably only a few seconds from line up to ATC clearance for take-off. My pilot, Saab’s Wing Commander Flying, Hans Einerth, doesn’t waste time or words – he releases the brakes as soon as ATC gives him the word. 

This is not so bad, I think to myself. My anxiety begins to subside as we gather speed in much ...

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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.


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