African Pilot

Gripen starts supersonic flight btests in Brazil


Brazils new fighter the F-39 Gripen E has begun performing supersonic flight tests in that country. The aircraft, based at the Gripen Test Flight Centre (GFTC) at Embraer’s facilities in Gavião Peixoto (SP), has been carrying out the flights over the designated test areas north west of the base. All flights follow authority-defined procedures and

take place at high altitude, above 5.000 meters.

These flights, carried out by Saab, are essential to test performanc­e and functions of the new aircraft, to continue the certificat­ion and acceptance procedures of the aircraft, which arrived in Brazil in September 2020.

Gripen will be performing supersonic flights during the next couple of months. Flying faster than the speed of sound creates

a sound wave, a sonic boom, that may sound more like a thundercla­p than the sound of a passing aircraft. It is possible

that residents of the region will hear this sound while this important testing of Brazil´s new fighter is being undertaken. We take care to ensure that these supersonic flights are taking

place in designated test areas, in coordinati­on with the aeronautic­al authoritie­s and following the procedures of the

Brazilian Air Force, explains Sven Larsson, head of GFTC at Saab.

Flight activities in Brazil includes testing of flight and environmen­tal control systems. It also aims to test the aircraft in the tropical climate. National features unique to the Brazilian aircraft, such as weapons integratio­n and the Link BR2 communicat­ion system, which provides encrypted data and voice communicat­ion for the aircraft will also be tested in Brazil.

The Gripen programme

The partnershi­p with Brazil began in 2014, with a contract for the developmen­t and production of 36 Gripen E/F aircraft for the Brazilian Air Force, including systems, support and equipment. An extensive technology transfer programme, running for a period of ten years, is driving the developmen­t of the local aeronautic­al industry through partner companies participat­ing in the Brazilian Gripen Programme. During this period, more than 350 Brazilian technician­s and engineers are participat­ing in theoretica­l and practical training in Sweden to acquire the necessary knowledge to perform the same tasks in Brazil.

So far, more than 230 profession­als have completed the training and most of them are back in Brazil working at the Gripen Design and Developmen­t Center (GDDN), also located at Embraer, in Gavião Peixoto. The GFTC and GDDN are part of the transfer of technology of the Gripen Programme. They are joint activities carried out by Saab and Embraer that aim to build the procedures and capability to develop and test new features during Gripen´s lifetime at FAB.

 ??  ??

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa