Saab has announced details of the latest order from the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration, FMV, to provide operational and development support for the Gripen fighter. The package covers a period of three years, from 2018 to 2020, and has a total value of SEK 1 350 million.
The order from FMV includes operating activities in rigs, simulators and test aircraft for the verification and validation of the current Gripen C/D and the forthcoming Gripen E fighter aircraft systems, plus operational support for the in-service Gripen C/D.
Saab completed a successful first flight of its first prototype Gripen E (serial 39-8) on June 15 last year.
The jet’s maiden flight had been planned for the second half of 2016, but Saab delayed it for six months to allow development of the federated software to be finalised and qualified to the commercial DO-178C standard.
Three single-seat Gripen E prototypes will be completed. Aircraft 39-8 will mainly be used for airframe and general flight control tests and 39-9 as a tactical systems test-bed, while 39-10 will be completed as a production-standard airframe.
Although the latest JAS 39Cs were delivered to the Flygvapnet (Swedish Air Force) as recently as three years ago, the service ordered 60 new JAS 39E airframes to either replace or partially replace its current Gripen fleet.
The company aims to deliver the first Gripen Es to Brazil and Sweden in 2019.