F-35A versus Saab Gripen NG

The F-35 compared with other modern jets.
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XanderCrews

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Unread post03 Apr 2021, 15:55

ricnunes wrote:
spazsinbad wrote:6 page PDF of article from 2012 attached from AIR International Magazine DECEMBER 2012 Vol.83 No.6
FLYING HIGH
Dec 2012 Guy Martin

"With deliveries now complete, Guy Martin gives an overview of the South African Air Force JAS 39 Gripen, the most advanced western fighter aircraft operating in the African continent...


Again and as most things (if not everything) related to the Gripen nowadays, that would be false!

I would say that the distinction of "the most advanced western fighter aircraft operating in the African continent" goes to the Moroccan F-16 Block 52+ which will soon be updated to Block 70 (F-16V) and joined by new build F-16 Block 70s.

(and last time I checked, Morocco is still part of the African continent :wink: )


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I agree. It is an older article though too. time marches on

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Tiger05

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Unread post03 Apr 2021, 21:02

SAAF Gripens were never "the most advanced western fighter aircraft operating in the African continent". They lack a BVR capability for instance. R-Darter was never integrated and SAAF Gripens rely on IRIS-T and A-Darter short range IR missiles as their primary A2A weapons. Also their A2G armament panoply is very limited consisting only of free-fall bombs and GBU-12 LGBs. Nothing fancy.
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ricnunes

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Unread post04 Apr 2021, 02:00

XanderCrews wrote:
ricnunes wrote:
Again and as most things (if not everything) related to the Gripen nowadays, that would be false!

I would say that the distinction of "the most advanced western fighter aircraft operating in the African continent" goes to the Moroccan F-16 Block 52+ which will soon be updated to Block 70 (F-16V) and joined by new build F-16 Block 70s.

(and last time I checked, Morocco is still part of the African continent :wink: )


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I agree. It is an older article though too. time marches on

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Yes, you're correct Xander!
Also notice that by 2012 (the date of the article) the Moroccan F-16s Block 52 (or at least most of them) were already delivered to Morocco. So, not even in 2012 was the Gripen the "most advanced western fighter aircraft in the African continent".

But like you correctly said, time marches on and since 2012 Egypt for example acquired the Rafale which is an even more advanced (and also western) fighter aircraft.
“Active stealth” is what the ignorant nay sayers call ECM and pretend like it’s new.
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ricnunes

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Unread post04 Apr 2021, 02:02

Tiger05 wrote:SAAF Gripens were never "the most advanced western fighter aircraft operating in the African continent". They lack a BVR capability for instance. R-Darter was never integrated and SAAF Gripens rely on IRIS-T and A-Darter short range IR missiles as their primary A2A weapons. Also their A2G armament panoply is very limited consisting only of free-fall bombs and GBU-12 LGBs. Nothing fancy.


DITTO
“Active stealth” is what the ignorant nay sayers call ECM and pretend like it’s new.
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spazsinbad

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Unread post08 Apr 2021, 09:58

Adaptable Software At Heart Of Future Gripen [THE LITTLE ENGINE THAT COULD "I THINK I CAN" repeat]
02 Apr 2021 Tony Osborne

"With flight-test activities spanning two hemispheres, development of Saab’s next-generation Gripen is gaining momentum.

Four years after its first flight, the aircraft is expected to pass Swedish military certification hurdles, the Brazilian Air Force will take delivery of its first Gripen for development tasks in October, and both countries are planning for the type to reach the front line in the next two years...." [and it goes on and on about the usual PR stuff - wunnerful indeed]

Photo: "The Swedish Air Force plans to integrate standoff missiles, while Saab’s Electronic Attack Jammer Pod, pictured on the outer wing pylon, could bolster Gripen E survivability in hostile airspace.
Credit: Per Kustvik/Saab" https://aviationweek.com/sites/default/ ... _promo.jpg
&
"Anatomy of the GRIPEN
At a fleeting look, it may be difficult to tell the difference between the Gripen E and earlier models of the Swedish fighter. Here are a few major changes Saab has introduced on the exterior and under the skin." https://images.jifo.co/41375675_1617214413755.jpg


Source: https://aviationweek.com/defense-space/ ... ure-gripen
Attachments
GripenEjamPod.jpg
AnatomyGRIPEN E.jpg
Last edited by spazsinbad on 08 Apr 2021, 10:09, edited 3 times in total.
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Unread post08 Apr 2021, 10:00

I think Ukraine would be an ideal customer for the Gripen! (just saying)
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Unread post08 Apr 2021, 17:57

Corsair1963 wrote:I think Ukraine would be an ideal customer for the Gripen! (just saying)



Ukraine is rife with corruption and bribery, so yes.
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Unread post08 Apr 2021, 18:11

spazsinbad wrote:
Adaptable Software At Heart Of Future Gripen [THE LITTLE ENGINE THAT COULD "I THINK I CAN" repeat]
02 Apr 2021 Tony Osborne

"With flight-test activities spanning two hemispheres, development of Saab’s next-generation Gripen is gaining momentum.

Four years after its first flight, the aircraft is expected to pass Swedish military certification hurdles, the Brazilian Air Force will take delivery of its first Gripen for development tasks in October, and both countries are planning for the type to reach the front line in the next two years...." [and it goes on and on about the usual PR stuff - wunnerful indeed]

Photo: "The Swedish Air Force plans to integrate standoff missiles, while Saab’s Electronic Attack Jammer Pod, pictured on the outer wing pylon, could bolster Gripen E survivability in hostile airspace.
Credit: Per Kustvik/Saab" https://aviationweek.com/sites/default/ ... _promo.jpg
&
"Anatomy of the GRIPEN
At a fleeting look, it may be difficult to tell the difference between the Gripen E and earlier models of the Swedish fighter. Here are a few major changes Saab has introduced on the exterior and under the skin." https://images.jifo.co/41375675_1617214413755.jpg


Source: https://aviationweek.com/defense-space/ ... ure-gripen


LOL its always "accelerating" its always "gaining momentum"

Speaking at Saab’s annual Gripen Seminar on 26 March, the company’s head of business unit Gripen E/F, Eddy de la Motte, said that, with flight-characteristic test having proceeded according to plan, the main focus is now on validating the aircraft’s mission and sensor systems. “We have today six aircraft involved in the flight testing”, de la Motte said, and “we are proceeding according to plan and are delivering according to our customers’ expectations. We are really now accelerating our test programme. During the last 12 months (since the last seminar) we passed the 100 and 200 test-flying hours milestones and more recently, just a couple of weeks ago, we passed 300 test flying hours in our test programme. In June last year we flew our latest test aircraft 39-10 and we are now shifting focus to more testing of tactical systems and sensors”, he explained.


According to a recent Saab media feature, the Gripen E program is making very good progress and the flight test is going at full speed

Saab has begun run tests of the third Gripen E test aircraft ahead of a pending first flight, as the Swedish company ramps up development of the new fighter to enable it to reach its key operating parameters during these advanced stages of testing.

In the meantime, the Gripen E development program is accelerating with the first flight of the third aircraft (39-10). On June 10, Jakob Hogberg took the aircraft aloft for a 57-minute flight from the factory airfield at Linköping. Saab plans to have eight Gripen Es flying by the end of 2019


The years long development just keeps moving quicker!!

How are we ramping up and gaining momentum when we have already achieved "Top speed"?! :doh:

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Unread post08 Apr 2021, 20:30

This is an interesting tangent.

Apparently Gripen doesn't quite yet satisfy the HX (Finnish) requirements. So today [edit: actally 15 Apr, so next thursday] the Swedish government supposedly signed a conditional investment plan, which would co-fund the needed development should Finland pick Gripen.

This is how the government will get Finland to choose the Gripen

The government is stepping up efforts to get Finland to choose the Gripen system when procuring new fighter jets, a deal worth a total of SEK 100 billion. In the spring budget, the Swedish offer is sweetened with new investments to develop the Gripen E in a way that suits Finland.

According to information to SvD, a decision on the Gripen investment is expected at Thursday's government meeting. In parallel, the Armed Forces will be commissioned to work on their investment plans in a supplementary basis to the government.

Exactly what amounts are involved is unknown, but it can be both more money, redistributions and earlier investments. The decision is based on the budget negotiations with the co-operation parties C and L and internal discussions between Minister of Defense Peter Hultqvist (S) and Minister of Finance Magdalena Andersson (S).

https://www.svd.se/sa-ska-regeringen-fa ... lja-gripen

In case Finland doesn't bite the Swedes will be left with inferior product or more realistically, their taxpayers will be on the hook for another surprise now that the need has been made apparent. Because can they realistically choose to remain behind and just shelve the ready made and politically acknowledged investment plans?

I'm thinking proper cruise missile integration must be one of the key deficiencies. Sweden eventually needs to procure one itself. Well, it should prove easier when your neighbor says they are a must and doesn't consider your setup as credible without them.

Here's one example interpretation to this end:
As I interpret the article, Finland has demands for things that Sweden (or Brazil) has not ordered in Gripen so far, and now the government is deciding that Sweden will pay for this, and that we will also get this in Sweden if Finland buys Gripen. Would guess at Gripen's new weapons?

https://twitter.com/Bufekalos/status/13 ... 1050175489
Last edited by magitsu on 09 Apr 2021, 09:47, edited 1 time in total.
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Unread post09 Apr 2021, 04:41

It could also be a million other things, probably in softeare domain too.

Remember when the Swiss straight up said "we aren't even going to evaluate this prototype aircraft" about Gripen E recently?

It could be that when the marketing boys projected the "questions?" slide after their presentation about all the bombastic features Gripen will have, col Puranen said "cool story, but is any of this funded yet?", so suddenly Swedes decuded to announce that they are actually funding it. The original Swiss eval says that SAAB promised to deliver "Gripen MS21" in 2014, even though current swedish jets are still MS20 software (iirc)
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Unread post10 Apr 2021, 14:36

hythelday wrote:It could be that when the marketing boys projected the "questions?" slide after their presentation about all the bombastic features Gripen will have, col Puranen said "cool story, but is any of this funded yet?", so suddenly Swedes decuded to announce that they are actually funding it.


in scenarios like this its always funny to try and figure out who is "playing" who. Saab is probably happy to have its wish list get funded anyway it can.


The original Swiss eval says that SAAB promised to deliver "Gripen MS21" in 2014, even though current swedish jets are still MS20 software (iirc)


"Easily upgraded"

On Software and Flying iphones it sure looks like F-35 has what Gripen was boasting about, but F-35 also has MADL which is the future. Gripen does not.:


To handle the necessary bandwidth, the F-35 has two primary data-sharing channels: the multi-function advanced datalink (MADL) network and Link 16.

“For MADL, you can best think of that as a way to extend one avionics system into multiple aircraft,” said Greg Lemons, Lockheed Martin’s missions systems expert for the F-35. “It’s designed around a four-ship flight group to be able to exchange the data that each aircraft sees, and for each airplane to take that data and fuse that into the information for the pilot.”

MADL allows greater, faster data sharing than other systems and is difficult for enemy forces to jam. The downside is it’s designed solely for communication between F-35s. The B-2 Spirit bomber is MADL-compatible. There were plans to upgrade the F-22 Raptor, but they were scrapped. The U.S. Defense Department has talked of upgrading other aircraft to MADL, but it’s expensive and cumbersome.

The legacy Link 16 system has wide compatibility. Lemons said that unlike most platforms that simply have a Link 16 communication box on board, the F-35 flies with a receiving box to see what other aircraft would receive from the fifth-gen fighter.

“On Link 16, you have to understand how the other platform uses your data and processes it so you can send it to them in a way that is meaningful to them,” he said. “The challenges were more associated with how the other platforms would interpret our data and making sure what we sent them provided them good information rather than information they couldn’t use because of how it was formatted.”


Automatic Collision Avoidance
One upcoming advancement for the F-35 is the automatic ground collision avoidance system (AGCAS). On the F-16, the system automatically avoids the ground when necessary. To date it has saved the lives of eight pilots (but only seven jets).

More specifically, the AGCAS uses GPS, terrain data and spatial awareness to recognize when the jet is heading toward the ground or a mountain, and if it’s too late for a pilot to react to that fact, the system intervenes and pulls up on its own before returning control to the pilot.

Lockheed Martin experimental test pilot Billie Flynn worked on the AGCAS system along with Air Force Research Lab engineers at what is now the NASA Armstrong Flight Research Center. Decades of flight data showed it’s extremely rare that pilots crash simply because they’re flying too close to the ground, he said.

“Pilots get disoriented in bad weather,” Flynn said. “They suffer spatial disorientation because they are moving aggressively at night. They get mixed up sometimes doing tasks in the cockpit and lose perspective of exactly where they’re at.”

Alerts won’t help if a pilot is disoriented or momentarily unconscious. AGCAS prevents a ground collision in that situation and gets the pilot out of harm’s way.

“We determined that a human can only stand 1.5 seconds before he thinks he better do something,” Flynn said. “This system is so robust that it’ll take control long after you and I, the human, would want to be pulling away from the ground if we were paying attention. It’s so precise that it will miss the ground essentially every single time. And that means that it won’t take over early from the pilot — whatever task we’re doing we will be allowed to do — but if we were way too close to the ground, it would take control and save us.”

Flynn is in charge of integrating AGCAS onto the F-35 five years ahead of schedule. It should be operational on an F-35 in 2019 instead of 2024. And he says the applicability doesn’t stop there.

“This technology is so interesting that it’s going to end up in corporate jets,” Flynn said. “It’s going to end up in private airplanes that people fly, and it’s going to end up in commercial airplanes that you and I load onto every single week.”

Flynn said he expects it to require commercial pressure for airlines and OEMs to decide to implement AGCAS. Once the decision is made, though, it won’t take long, thanks to the sophistication of technologies such as GPS, which commercial airliners already have.

Normally, the AGCAS activates at 2,300 feet. For testing, Lockheed adds 10,000 more to that floor, so the F-35 thinks it is close to the ground when it gets to 12,300 feet and pulls up. That way, they can make sure the system recognizes the jet’s distance from the ground and reacts appropriately without putting a test pilot in a situation where the AGCAS is the only thing preventing him from crashing.

Electronic warfare is also a concern in a hacking event in which someone could snatch control away from the pilot.

“That has never been an issue with this system,” Flynn said. “The way we’ve always worked is it defaults off. So, it’s never going to fly you up.”

A so-called “nuisance fly-up” is when the system pulls the aircraft up unexpectedly without pilot input.

“We have spent years stripping out the potential of any nuisance issues with the flight controls and how the aircraft behaves,” Flynn said.

Lockheed still needs to do live testing with the AGCAS in the F-35 before pilots can use it in combat, Flynn said. “It’s a software drop. It’s like updating your iOS,” he added.

AESA Radar
Among the F-35’s radar capabilities, its Northrop Grumman-built AN-APG-81 AESA is notable.

“It’s the biggest antenna on any airplane, so it gathers the most data,” said Dan Dixon, Northrop Grumman’s director of F-35 development planning. Compared to a mechanically scanned array, AESA radars can quickly scan any direction.

Pilots appreciate the information the sensor package ultimately gets them, Dixon said, and the military is pleased with the ripple effect of increased situational awareness for the entire fleet. He said, however, that there’s more work to do determining who gets what information through MADL and Link 16.

“It’s basically the internet of the sky for all U.S. and coalition partners,” Dixon said. “You would have had to do that with your voice in the past. … It’s a mix of who gets what, but I have the opportunity to choose the richness of the data that gets exchanged. I think that’s probably the game-changer at that point.”

The Northrop team “is spiraling capability every week” in a way that “commercial folk would find compelling,” Dixon said. Software and apps are being updated on a weekly basis, he added, and that the platform is agile in a way belied by stories of decade-long processes for follow-on modernization.

The testing and verification process and a desire by operators to have a stable baseline for a couple of years to unify training prevents slow major upgrades, he said. Northrop is always working on new capabilities, but the military wants upgrades about every two years.

Northrop’s biggest challenge in the past and a major focus going forward is on affordability.

The “Joint Program Office is under a lot of pressure to work affordability initiatives in, and we get it. That’s all recompete-driven, so the enterprise gets it, too,” Dixon said. “Nobody’s above reproach. We treat it that way. We’re always looking for affordability features. We’ve come down 30 to 40 percent since we started making the radar.”


http://interactive.aviationtoday.com/av ... -learning/

The F-35, a clean-sheet design, will receive regular capability upgrades over the course
of its service life. By comparison, the Gripen E and Block III Super Hornet are already heavily
modified variants of older types. Their basic airframe designs predate the digital era and their
systems architectures have less capacity for incorporating future upgrades than the data-centric
architecture of the F-35.
306 Under Lockheed Martin’s continuous capability development and
delivery (C2D2) strategy, the F-35 receives weekly over-the-air software updates.

Block IV
capability, the next milestone in the platform’s development, is centred on improved mission
systems and compatibility with new air-to-surface munitions.308 In the mid-2020s, the DAS will
be updated with five times its current resolution; the longer-term development goal is to integrate
artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning into onboard systems such that the DAS uses
full augmented reality (AR) and AI-recommended decision-making. Overall, some 60 major
software and hardware upgrades are planned for the F-35 out to the end of this decade.
With the US military pushing to maximize the type’s information-sharing capability, the
F-35’s continuous in-service upgrades will have two effects on its technical interoperability that
merit discussion here. First, regular software upgrades to ISR systems, mission computers and
MADL will inevitably improve the quality of data that the F-35 shares. Like the rest of the
platform, the type’s technical interoperability will mature with time – bringing not just F-35s but
entire joint forces closer together. Second, the number and variety of platforms that can be
networked to the F-35 through MADL is certain to increase with future upgrades. The US is
currently developing next-generation unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), a sixth-generation
fighter aircraft and the replacement for the B-2, known as the B-21 Raider. These types, which
will all possess VLO capability, are likely to be equipped with MADL. Fifth-generation fighters
are set to receiving a teaming capability for use with UAVs – and CAF officials have recognized
Canada’s future need for one. Existing US C4ISR aircraft use specialized networks to link to
certain space-based surveillance and communications assets.

These networks use the Ku-band
portion of the electromagnetic spectrum, which happens to be the same band used by MADL.
Indeed, the USAF is now researching the possibility of networking its fifth-generation fighters
with the secretive X-37 space plane. With upgrades to sensor fusion and MADL, the F-35 will
be a key player in future US-led multinational operations that leverage MDC2 and ultimately
satisfy level 4 of the LISI model: Enterprise-based interoperability in a universal environment.

https://curve.carleton.ca/system/files/ ... anadas.pdf
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