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1 Gripen vs 2 Typhoons. Pilot tells his story.


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Swedish pilot tells us his story from training exercise against two Typhoons.

 

In Swedish: http://blogg.forsvarsmakten.se/flygvapenbloggen/2014/06/06/verklighetsnara-taktikutveckling-av-jas-39-i-england-meatball-ur-en-pilots-perspektiv/

 

For translation I suggest https://translate.google.com/[url=https://translate.google.com/translate?sl=sv&tl=en&js=y&prev=_t&hl=sv&ie=UTF-8&u=http%3A%2F%2Fblogg.forsvarsmakten.se%2Fflygvapenbloggen%2F2014%2F06%2F06%2Fverklighetsnara-taktikutveckling-av-jas-39-i-england-meatball-ur-en-pilots-perspektiv%2F&edit-text=&act=url][/url]


Edited by Brisse
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That'd be a missile. No sensational story really. The Typhoons flew with a load of 4 IR and 4 radar missiles, and the Gripen flew with a single IR missile and a helmet mounted display system that he could lock on with. The Typhoons didn't, and neither was cleared to "fire" until they were within visual range.

 

Doesn't take much of an intellect to understand who won.

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I tell you what, watching them this week, those Gripens certainly take a lit if runway to get in the air and climb pretty slowly when they do.

 

Very unscientific purely passing comment with no research to back it up, but they seem pretty underpowered watching them on takeoff. Seen a few aborted take offs as well, which I wouldn't expect for such a new aircraft.

 

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A little difficult understanding the finer nuances of the story.

 

I'm getting the feeling his experience really wasn't a positive one except for his IR capable helmet...

 

I'm also confused by the meaning of the word "robot"

 

In this meaning I think it means radar autonomous missile???

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Either that, or it's just a generic term for 'guided missile'. Swedish SAMs and some ATGMs are designated 'RBS' for 'Robotsystem'.

 

In other news, as a big Gripen fan, it puts a smile on my face to read a tale of one of them whupping a pair of Tiffys, even if the engagement was weighted in its favor a little. <.<

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"Robot" is a guided missile, any type of seeker. From little sidewinders and all the way to ICBM's. (In swedish: "Interkontinental ballistisk robot") The word "missil" has started to overtake the word "robot" in general, layman's swedish (as a loanword from english), but in military and technical circles the word "robot" remains the most common. Generally speaking, if it has an engine of some sort, and can navigate/home in on targets with onboard equipment, it's a "robot".

 

As an aside, the word "missile" in english originally indicates any projectile. Bow and Arrow, even slings, are "missile" weapons.


Edited by EtherealN
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I tell you what, watching them this week, those Gripens certainly take a lit if runway to get in the air and climb pretty slowly when they do.

 

Very unscientific purely passing comment with no research to back it up, but they seem pretty underpowered watching them on takeoff. Seen a few aborted take offs as well, which I wouldn't expect for such a new aircraft.

 

At MTOW, C/D Gripens indeed do have a considerably weaker T/W than does the Typhoon. E/F is getting a nice upgrade on that note.

 

Not knowing the exact situation you observed them in, of course.

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I tell you what, watching them this week, those Gripens certainly take a lit if runway to get in the air and climb pretty slowly when they do.

 

Very unscientific purely passing comment with no research to back it up, but they seem pretty underpowered watching them on takeoff. Seen a few aborted take offs as well, which I wouldn't expect for such a new aircraft.

 

The Gripen is taking off without afterburner in general to conserve fuel. Max perfomance TO may come down to a little more than 300 meters. How that stands against the Typhoon I´m unsure about.

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In other news, as a big Gripen fan, it puts a smile on my face to read a tale of one of them whupping a pair of Tiffys, even if the engagement was weighted in its favor a little. <.<

 

Slightly? As I wrote, the Typhoons were flying with 8 missiles and no HMD linked to the IR missiles. The Gripen flew with a single heat seaker linked to its HMD, and the rules were that it wouldn't start until they'd flown past each other. That scenario was about as realistic as the intercept exercises the USAF did with B-52s flying high and fighters flying so close behind them that it didn't even take one minute for them to "kill" the BUFF when the exercise started.

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Agree. T/W is one of the weak points on the current Gripen, at least when you start putting stuff on it's pylons. Prototypes for the E/F has improved T/W a lot though, probably on par with the Eurofighter Typhoon. Don't remember the exact number :D

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The Gripen is taking off without afterburner in general to conserve fuel. Max perfomance TO may come down to a little more than 300 meters. How that stands against the Typhoon I´m unsure about.

 

Yeah, I really don't know anything about the Gripen I wouldn't be surprised if it could do better. The Typhoons do mil power take off as well as reheat simply isn't necessary, and just casually watching they are upto 2-300 ft at the same point on the runway the Gripens get airborne. And they are climbing much quicker as well.

 

But it could simply be that it's just down to how the pilots of each normally operate.

 

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Slightly? As I wrote, the Typhoons were flying with 8 missiles and no HMD linked to the IR missiles. The Gripen flew with a single heat seaker linked to its HMD, and the rules were that it wouldn't start until they'd flown past each other. That scenario was about as realistic as the intercept exercises the USAF did with B-52s flying high and fighters flying so close behind them that it didn't even take one minute for them to "kill" the BUFF when the exercise started.

 

It clearly says in the beginning of the text that the whole point of this exercise was to fly against two superior fighters. The unit that visits RAF Coningsby is the SwAF T&E Squadron (TU JAS) with the intent to form the tactics and procedures for the operational squadrons for the upcoming HMD implementation.

 

With that in mind, I belive more in their professionalism, than in your statements picked out of the blue. What is your proof that the Typhoons were more loaded than the Gripens in relation to MTOW? If you are right, then the entire SwAF will be fooled, and more than one head will roll here in Sweden.

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Aye, hard to call. I've seen C's do quite spectacular takeoffs, but that was airshows and I suspect it didn't carry anything more than strictly necessary, so that would also be a bad source of judgement.

 

As a theory - well, more a speculation - could it be that the Gripens need a bit more speed than the phoons to reach optimal climb, and thus "relax" after takeoff longer than the Phoons would?

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With that in mind, I belive more in their professionalism, than in your statements picked out of the blue. What is your proof that the Typhoons were more loaded than the Gripens in relation to MTOW? If you are right, then the entire SwAF will be fooled, and more than one head will roll here in Sweden.

 

Good question there: the stated loadout of the Gripen in question was 4 IRIS (but only one physical). Question is whether the phoons had 4/4 _simulated_ weapons but were they physically present too? Since it was clear that the simulated weapons load was not necessarily the same as physical training weapons on hardpoints.

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Well, not sure which sortie this was from, but I'd have said just 2 ASRAAM ATMs and 2 tanks as in the pic attached. It's all I've seen 41 carrying this week.

image.thumb.jpg.57c1b20ec489f1c538e14b2a3d6314fc.jpg

 

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With that in mind, I belive more in their professionalism, than in your statements picked out of the blue. What is your proof that the Typhoons were more loaded than the Gripens in relation to MTOW?

 

Wow, just wow. Did you read the article? First paragraph. And as I wrote, the biggie wasn't the load, but the fact that they were doing a very short range engagement, and the Typhoons lacked the HMD link to their heatseekers that the Gripen had.

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Looks like Saab are trying to make-up for a loss of manhood after the Swiss people voted their aircraft down.


Edited by Emu
Didn't know difference between Switzerland and Sweden - yes, what a dummy indeed?
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That'd be a missile. No sensational story really. The Typhoons flew with a load of 4 IR and 4 radar missiles, and the Gripen flew with a single IR missile and a helmet mounted display system that he could lock on with. The Typhoons didn't, and neither was cleared to "fire" until they were within visual range.

 

Doesn't take much of an intellect to understand who won.

So they fought with both hands tied around their ankles?

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Pretty much. The Typhoons could lock on if the Gripen was within the narrow FoV of their HUD screens, whereas the Gripen could, as the pilot himself wrote engage "virtually everything within my field of view".

 

Doesn't matter what plane you set up against what plane, under those circumstances any fighter pilot who's worth his salt should win very quickly.

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Seriously now. The moment you try to discern better/worse out of something like this, you are wrong. This isn't about "winning" either. We should probably stop using those words.

 

What happened here is this:

 

1) The swedish air force is integrating HMD's for use with their IRIS-T weapons on the Gripen.

2) They need to develop tactics for how to use them.

3) They got an opportunity to try this out against Typhoons, and developed scenarios for it to test their ideas and get said tactics developed.

 

Within the scope of that, the Typhoons were supposed to lose in spite of the other mentioned advantages that the Phoons have. That's the point - keep at it until you find some way to win in that scenario. We don't know how many other attempts were made with other approaches to the "problem" where the phoons did win - but it is evident from the words of the pilot that he did expect to "die" very fast if it didn't work out quickly. (As is, tbh, the expected outcome for the loner in practically any 2-v-1 fight.)

 

The takeaway from this is:

 

1) The Gripen is getting some nice missiles with some nice targeting systems to boot, and tactics for this are being developed with some apparent success.

2) The Gripen, thusly equipped, is something that the enemy has to take seriously even in a 2-v-1 popup fight where they have maneuver/energy superiority.

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If you're talking about my post, go back to the start of the thread. It all came out of my response to the claim that the scenario was only slightly in the Gripen's advantage.

 

Regardless, I have a hard time seeing the point in an exercise like this. Sure it can be used to develop tactics, but is it wise to develop tactics from extremely unrealistic scenarios? The Typhoon has had their PIRATE system for years, so short range engagement scenario where they don't have it doesn't sound realistic.

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I was speaking generally, since reports of this kind of exercise tends to always end up in words as "win" or "loose" etc.

 

As for realistic/unrealistic scenarios: apparently they think so. Remember: the Swedish Air Force probably does not expect to be fighting Typhoons anytime soon - or ever. But they might want to know how to tango with fighters that have energy- and rate-advantages (like the Phoon, but there are probably more).

 

The Phoons served the role of aggressor aircraft here. Aggressor aircraft do not necessarily play the role of the actual, physical, aircraft they are.

 

Similarly, there might have been other exercises that we do not know about where the Phoons did user their kit. Or perhaps that has already been tested locally, in sweden, against similarly equipped Gripens. Military exercises, aside from full-blown war games, typically evaluate very specific things - they don't slop a DCS-style furball and say "see what happens if you use HMS".

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Sure it can be used to develop tactics, but is it wise to develop tactics from extremely unrealistic scenarios?

 

Yes, it's all part of a process that has been going on for decades. You start with very simple, high choreographed actions, and slowly increase the complexity. It the aim is to test the performance of a specific system, they you design the flight specifically to test that system.

 

The Typhoon has had their PIRATE system for years, so short range engagement scenario where they don't have it doesn't sound realistic.

 

No they haven't. And even if they did, PIRATE wouldn't be of any use in such a scenario. HEA/HMSS however, we do have, and it obviously would have been used were this not a specific test/training sortie.

 

These flights and the whole of the Swedish visit was about 2 test and evaluation squadrons, and their test pilots getting working together to satisfy some very well defined test and development goals.

 

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