Gripen Fighter With Meteor Missile
02/07/2013 by Victoria Knowles - Armed Forces International Reporter
Saab has successfully carried out the initial test firing of the Meteor air-to-air missile, which is radar controlled and developed for mass production.
The test was conducted by the security and defence company in collaboration with the Swedish Defence Material Administration. Gripen, therefore, is the world's first combat fighter system that has been developed with the capability to fire this Meteor version, which has been designed for Gripen, Rafale and Eurofighter.
In late June, the first pair of Meteor missiles in their mass production configuration was triggered for the first time at a remote-controlled target from Gripen. The trial firing illustrated the missile's capacity to lock on to the target, and also demonstrated the link function between the missile and aircraft and its separation from the aircraft. The test was also used to substantiate the command support for the pilot.
"Testing has been completed as planned and we've now taken yet another important step in work with integration and development of Gripen C/D," said FMV's project manager for the Meteor, Michael Östergren.
Radar Controlled Meteor Developed for Mass Production
He described his satisfaction for the results that has been jointly accomplished, and said it has given the integration project between the Gripen and the Meteor "considerable confidence."
Classified as a Beyond Visual Range Air-to-Air Missile (BVRAAM), the Meteor is designed to engage with long distance airborne targets. A European collaborative project, between Germany, Spain, Italy, France, Sweden and Great Britain developed the missile. Great Britain is responsible for contracts and the UK's Defence Equipment and Support (DE&S) led the work.
Saab's head of Aeronautics, Lennart Sindahl, said thanks to Gripen's advanced design and the team's efficiency of working, it is evident that the combat fighter system possesses great potential for cost-efficient and fast new capability integration, such as with sensors and weapons.
He described the Meteor missile, Saab PS05 radar and Gripen collaboration as being world-class regarding air defence. Representatives from British MBDA, FMV and Saab comprised the test team. Further tests will take place in the autumn, allowing the new capabilities to be delivered next year.