Gripen underlines operational capabilities in Poland
6 June 2001
Two single-seat SAAB-BAE SYSTEMS Gripen swing-role fighters are taking part in a dispersed operations defense exercise with the Polish Air Force, near Szcecin in Poland. Operating alongside Polish MiG-29, MiG-21, Su-22 and Iskra aircraft, the Swedish Air Force Gripen fighters will demonstrate their ability to operate from forward operating bases and road strips, an important element of Polish national defense requirements.
The demonstration id part of the ongoing drive by SAAB-BAE SYSTEMS to sell the fourth generation aircraft to Poland, which the SAAB-BAE SYSTEMS team says is the only one capable of operating effectively from both main operating bases and dispersed sites, including unprepared road strips.
"Gripen is ideally suited for out-of-area operations in support of NATO or other multi-national forces," states Simon Carr, sales and marketing director, SAAB-BAE SYSTEMS Gripen. "The high availability, reliability and low support requirements allows a Gripen force to generate more sorties than any other aircraft in its class.
The Gripen team says that the aircraft has a minimal requirement for ground support infrastructure and equipment at both a main operating base and deployed operations site and that the fighter's need for less spares, repair and maintenance, leads to more time in the air.
Typically, each Gripen can be turned around, mission to mission, by a team of just five personnel in less than 10 minutes, whether at the main operating base or on dispersed deployment. Even when carrying a heavy load of fuel and weapons, it requires less than 500 meters of narrow roadway for take-off or landing.
SAAB-BAE SYSTEMS Gripen is currently preparing its response to the first part of the Polish government's RFP for the modernisation of its air force to meet national, NATO and European defense needs. Gripen for Poland will be fully NATO compatible and interoperable. It will support all NATO priorities for the standardisation of doctrines and procedures, including NATO standard datalink communications and an air-to-air refueling system.
Swedish Air Force variants of Gripen, although currently different to those marketed internationally, have successfully demonstrated their ability to operate with NATO forces and other Partnership for Peace nations during exercises, including Baltic Link 200, last year.
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