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Saab JAS 39 Gripen to Be Upgraded, C/D Spec to Be in Service Until 2035

Believe it or not, there are military aircraft manufacturers out there that are not called Lockheed Martin or Boeing. They may not be as visible as the American behemoths, but they do have about the same tumultuous history behind them and some amazing products to offer.
Saab JAS 39 Gripen 10 photos
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One such company is Saab, a crew that has been in this business since the 1930s. Over the decades, it gave birth to a number of flying weapons platforms, including one of the strangest-shaped aircraft ever to fly in the skies of the world, the Draken. Presently, the flagship Saab military aircraft is the JAS 39 Gripen.

Born at the end of the 1980s, the plane is relatively young, by fighter standards, and it is presently available in two versions, C- and E-Series, with their own subvariants. And they’ll fly well into the next decade, thanks to a SEK 500 million ($52.5 million) order Saab received from the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration (FMV) to upgrade the plane.

More specifically, Saab will have to bring the Gripen to C/D spec and make sure it can stay operational and up to date to about 2035. The exact details of this configuration were not announced.

“Gripen C/D is the backbone of the Swedish Armed Forces today and will continue to be for many years to come, so this is an important order where we will ensure the continued operation and operational relevance of Gripen C/D,” said in a statement Jonas Hjelm, Head of Saab’s Aeronautics business area.

The Gripen is powered by one Volvo turbofan powerplant with afterburner, capable of developing a little over 80 kN of thrust in the C and D variants. It can fly at speeds of Mach 2 and for up to 3,200 km (2,000 miles) when conditions are right.

At the time of writing, the Saab JAS 39 Gripen is being flown by the Air Forces of some three dozen nations.

press release
 
 
 
 
 

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