Friday, April 23, 2010

Gripen Nervous About Ferrying Demo Aircraft To India, But Confident Of Repeat Performance In MMRCA Trials

The Indian Air Force evaluation team that was in Europe for phase-3 flight evaluation trials (FETs) of the Eurofighter Typhoon and Gripen Demo was stranded on the continent by the Icelandic ash cloud. Not sure if they're back yet, but they had a fantastic time in Linkoping, Sweden, during the first week of this month when a member of the IAF team became the first non-Swedish pilot to fly the Gripen Demo from the front cockpit. The team had eight flights in the aicraft, and will fly it again next month. The Gripen Demo will touch down in Jamnagar on May 17, after which the IAF will decide the sequence of trials the airplane will be put through.

While the Gripen people are still basking in the rumours and feedback about how well their pair of Gripen-Ds performed during the India phase of the evaluations, the team is palpably nervous about ferrying the Gripen Demo to India. Met up with Gripen's MMRCA campaign head Eddy de la Motte a couple of days ago. He told me, "While we are very confident that the Demo will perform perfectly in what is demanded of it, we hope there are no problems in bringing it to India. We will be hopping it across from Sweden to India. We don't foresee any problems, but it is after all a prototype, and we can't be too careful." The IAF is likely to put the Gripen Demo through the full gamut of trials in Bangalore, Jaisalmer and Leh, though probably not in that order. In many ways, evaluating the Gripen Demo will be like testing an entirely different airplane, substantively different as it is from the original that flew in India last month.

The first down-select in the MMRCA is scheduled to take place by October this year.


Vishal Jolapara said...

Shiv are you referring to SAAB's anxiety over ferrying the plane to India or its Indian Trials ?

Henning said...

Finally!! I really hope it Performs outstanding :)A partnership between India and Sweden would be very good for both countries.

Anonymous said...

They could always bring it inside the giant Antonov plane.

Anyways the problem would be with its F-414 engine and its ability to handle dust and sand at Jaisalmer because it is the same engine as superbug.

KVR said...

everyone seems to be rooting for the F18 but I have feeling that the Gripen could be a dark horse - single engine or not.

Anonymous said...

Not rooting for f18, actually rooting for Eurofighter. Believe the final two should be EF vs Gripen.

Once Gripen comes, the AF would forget Tejas altogether. If IAF commit to buy 400 Tejas(MK1+MK2) then Gripen should be fine too.

joydeep ghosh said...

Lets hope it comes up all winner. With complete TOT there will be ample chance to use Gripen NG as the base to develop a sleeker MCA

Maratha MInd said...

What a shameless delay in procuring 126 aircraft.
For acquiring 126 aircraft ie, roughly 3 squadrons, it is taking us 5 years.

We need 4 more squadrons in future to maintain minimum deterrence. So that will be another 6-7 years.

Elephant economy's elephant MoD moving at elephant's pace


Ravi Khanna said...

Shiv, I want to know why does india not choose Eurofighter Typhoon for 126 MMRCA!!

I think that's the only fighter india need it now.

Anonymous said...

I recommend the FAB and IAF to join hands and select The Gripen Demo platform as their choice. Brazil and South Africa already is co-developing the A-Darter fifth generation infrared homing air-to-air missile (AAM). (Remember South Africa is alredy flying Jas Gripen 39 C/D, so they will integrate it with the Gripen. The SAAB Gripen has already been sold to different customers. Both Nato and non Nato members
Whats more in the deal? LCA Tejas can also use the Gripen Demo engine GE F 414G. Proven hot refuling capacity. An already state of the art AAM integrated missile to the Gripen system. The lowest TCO and the promise of total TOT. Including state of the art AESA radar and it gives FAB and IAF the option of adding any weaponary to further boost boths capability.
This is a real win-win deal for Brazil, India Sweden (and the USA that will supply the engine for the whole deal and South Africa who is co-developing the A-Darter).

Anonymous said...

Today 18 JAS 39 Gripen appeared in Stockholm at the Royal Wedding in Sweden. You can look for yourself how impressive this bird is at this clip on youtube:

Anonymous said...

IAF and FAB should join hands and select The Gripen Demo platform as their choice, since A-Darter now is an integrated option with The Gripen aircraftan as well as the Meteor.



20 July 2010, in News
Saab has successfully carried out an important stage in the A-Darter missile programme with the first test firing verifying the integration between the missile and the Gripen aircraft.

The tests were held at the SAAF (South African Air Force) test area at Overberg, in South Africa. Gripen was chosen as the platform for these integration tests and has completed the them with outstanding results.

“The test firing is an important milestone in the Gripen program. The A- darter missile is a collaboration and development project within the missile area between the local industry, Denel Dynamics, South Africa, and Brazil, where Saab has a leading role for the integration of complex future missile systems”, says Ulf Nilsson responsible for the Gripen program within Aeronautics at Saab.

The A-Darter is a fifth-generation short-range air-to-air missile to be used during aerial combat with the new generation of fighter aircraft. In South Africa it will be operational on Gripen and in Brazil it is the weapon of choice for the future fighters of the F-X2 programme.

“The A- Darter and the Gripen aircraft have worked beyond our expectations and we are extremely pleased with the test firing results”, says Magnus Reineholm Project Manager for the integration of A-Darter at Saab.

Beside the A- Darter programme Saab is also taking part in the Meteor programme, which also is an international cooperation between leading aerospace companies in Europe. The Swedish government has also approved the order of the Meteor on Gripen for the SwAF.

These missile integrations and the order of the Meteor missile shows the commitment that Saab, the Swedish Government and our customers have in the Gripen system to keep it at the forefront of technology.