Saab's Gripen-E Fighter Jet Makes Maiden Flight

  • Our Bureau
  • 04:50 PM, June 15, 2017
  • 2858
Saab's Gripen-E Fighter Jet Makes Maiden Flight
Gripen-E Fighter Jet

Saab's first prototype Gripen-E fighter has completed its first flight from the company's Linköping site in Sweden 13 months after its official roll-out.

Performed by test pilot Marcus Wandt on 15 June, the aircraft flight lasted 40min.

"During the flight, the aircraft carried out a number of actions to demonstrate various test criteria, including the retracting and extending of the landing gear," the company announced Thursday.

"The flight was just as expected, with the aircraft performance matching the experience in our simulations," says Wandt. "Its acceleration is impressive, with smooth handling."

Jonas Hjelm, head of Saab's aeronautics business area, notes that the first flight of the prototype was conducted "with the fully qualified software".

The company opted to place the fighter's new avionics system through this process, delaying the first-flight event from an original objective of late last year.

Flight-test activities will continue to build on this achievement, with the programme on track to achieve the 2019 delivery schedule to our Swedish and Brazilian customers.

The nations have so far ordered respective totals of 60 and 28 new Gripens, with the Brazilian air force also to field the type in a two-seat F-model configuration.

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