Next-gen Gripen comes with a GE engine, AESA radar, and IRST
STOCKHOLM, ($1=9.02 Swedish Kronas) – Saab has announced the launch of six JAS-39 Gripen E series fighters. They will soon reach the Swedish and Brazilian air forces, making the two countries the first recipients of the latest version.
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Last week, a meeting was held with senior Saab officials [attended by CEO Mikael Johansson and one of his deputies, Jonas Helm] and the Supreme Command of the Brazilian Air Force [represented by General Carlos de Almeida Baptista Jr.] and Sweden [General Major General Karl-Johan Edström], on the presentation of the newly completed serial Gripen E fighters ordered years ago. Officials also talked about the future of the new variation of Gripen, discussing their impact on the defense of these countries.
The six machines produced by Saab will be distributed as follows: four will be distributed to Brazil and the other two to Sweden. This means that Brazil has five fighters that have joined the first version of the Gripen E, operating for more than a year, of which approximately 74 JAS-39C and 24 JAS-39D.
During the visit to the Saab plant, representatives of Sweden and Brazil were shown several fighters, both in series and test production. The company also said that visitors had the opportunity to test the new flight simulator and see an air show with machines designed for their countries.
Brazil bought the Gripen in 2014 [for $ 5.8 billion], signing a contract with Saab to supply 36 machines, including 28 E [single] and 8 F [double] fighters, along with appropriate equipment, maintenance, and more. the interesting thing – with technology transfer. As a result, partial development and production [which will reach 15 Gripen on Brazilian soil] will be possible in the Latin American country, including testing of new aircraft. There will also be a broad involvement of the local engineering team, which will enable Brazilian jobs and businesses to grow.
Sweden, for its part, as a local recipient of fighter jets, has been associated with these machines from the outset, from the test flight in 1988, the start of series production in 1993, and the entry into service in 1996. In 2013, ordered 60 Gripen E fighters for finishing and partial replacement of existing Gripen C / D machines. Initially, these 60 fighters were to replace this fleet, but after Russia’s aggression against Ukraine, it was decided to maintain the numerical potential of Swedish aviation at a higher level, so at least for some time some of them still modified older versions of Gripen [armed with Meteor missiles, for example] will remain in service.
Saab JAS-39 Gripen E, compared to the C / D variant, is mainly characterized by a more powerful power supply unit in the form of a jet engine from General Electric GE F414G with a maximum thrust of 98 kN, providing the ability to fly at supersonic cruising speed [ supercruise].
The maximum take-off weight is 16,500 kilograms. Communication systems were improved and the fighter was equipped with new onboard electronics, as well as a new AESA radar [with active scanning], infrared sensor IRST [InfraRed Search and Track System], which allows increasing situational awareness of the modern battlefield.
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