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Saab JAS 39 Gripen

JAS stands for "Jakt, Attack och Spaning", the Swedish terms for "fighter, attack and reconnaissance" – making it evident that the "Gripen" (in English: griffin) is a Swedish multirole fighter plane. Since the start of its production in 1987, some 250 units have been built. Besides its domestic use, the Gripen was also sold to South Africa, Thailand, Hungary, the Czech Republic and Brazil.

The single-engine delta wing plane (the wings have the form of a triangle) belongs rather to the lightweight family, thus not being able to totally keep up with other jets equipped with two power plants like e.g. the Eurofighter Typhoon. The Gripen, however, has other talents: for example, it can use improvised landing strips, highways and hard surface roads for takeoff and landing even during winter. Furthermore, it is very reliable and easy to maintain.

At AIRPOWER16, a Gripen of the Czech Air Force demonstrate in the air display, what it is capable of, while Hungary presents an aircraft in predatory schemes in the special-themed Tiger area of the Static Display. 

  • © Bundesheer / Harald Minich

  • © Bundesheer / Wolfgang Grebien

  • © Bundesheer / Gerald Primisser

  • © Bundesheer / Wolfgang Grebien

© Katsuhiko Tokunaga

Facts & Figures

Manufacturer Saab
Length 14.10 m
Height 4.50 m
Wingspan 8.40 m
Empty weight 6,800 kg
Max. take-off weight 14,000 kg
Max. speed Mach 2 / 2,130 km/h
Service ceiling 15,240 m / 50,000 ft
Power plant 1 x Volvo Aero RM12
Thrust 80 kN (with afterburner)
Display Flying + Static