Saab Aeronáutica Montagens (SAM), Saab's first aero structures plant outside of Sweden for the new Gripen E/F fighter, marked the start of production today in Brazil.
This site builds sections of Gripen, which will then be delivered to the final assembly facilities at the Embraer plant in Gavião Peixoto, São Paulo, Brazil and to Linköping, Sweden.
In 2014, Saab signed a contract with Brazilian government for the development and production of 36 Gripen E/F aircraft. In September last year, the first Brazilian Gripen E aircraft was delivered to start the flight test programme.
Now, another milestone is reached, as Gripen production starts at the SAM plant, which is located in São Bernardo do Campo, a city in the metropolitan area of São Paulo in Brazil, a Saab release said.
The tail cone and front fuselage of the single-seat version of the Gripen fighter are the first aero structures to enter into production at SAM. Subsequently, the aerodynamic brakes, rear fuselage, wing box and front fuselage for the two-seater version will also be manufactured at SAM.
“This is another outcome of the Transfer of Technology (ToT) of the Gripen programme. Based on theoretical and practical on-the-job training of Brazilian engineers and assemblers at Saab in Linköping, we were able to establish a highly qualified production line at SAM, following the same standards that we have in our factory in Sweden,” says Jonas Hjelm, head of Saab’s business area Aeronautics.
Currently, SAM has more than 70 highly qualified employees, half of whom are participating or have already participated in the ToT Programme in Sweden. Part of these employees have already completed the training and returned to initiate the production in Brazil.