The third JAS-39E Gripen has had its maiden flight. The flight lasted 57 minutes and was accompanied by a JAS-39C chase plane. The milestone has brought the Gripen E closer to its IOC.
The JAS-39E is a significant upgrade from the C model utilizing a combination of new and existing systems employed on the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet. This includes the GE F414 turbofan and Martin Baker Mk 16 ejection seat. The Gripen E features a fully digital touch screen cockpit and ES-05 AESA radar.
The JAS-39E/F has been ordered by Sweden and Brazil. 28 Es and 8 Fs have been confirmed by Brazil to replace the fleets aging F-5s and already withdrawn Mirage 2000s. These will be designated F-39E. The JAS-39s IOC is set for 2021.
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