The first two Brazilian Gripen pilots after their first solo flights from Såtenäs, in January 2015 (Image © Anders Hjärp)

Happy Brazilians go solo in Sweden

Great news today, in particular if you’re from Brazil, have taste for aviation and dig Saab (the planes, not the cars). The first two Força Aérea Brasileira (FAB) JAS 39 Gripen pilots performed their very first solo flights on 27 January 2015 from Såtenäs airbase in Sweden. Today’s event was announced recently.

The solo flights took place on Tuesday afternoon, as both pilots strapped themselves into the seats of Swedish Air Force JAS 39Cs, assigned to F7 Wing. The unit serves as the Saab Gripen Operational Training Unit. Both pilots have spent the last couple of months learning everything there is to know about the jet fighter.

In 2013, Brazil decided on buying 36 Next Generation JAS 39E/F aircraft, which are to be partially developed and produced in Brazil. First deliveries are expected in 2019.

As a stop gap measure, Brazil will borrow or lease up to twelve C/D models from Sweden. Eventually, Brazil is said to have a requirement for up to 108 Saab Gripens, which could include the yet to be developed carrier-borne Sea Gripen.

© 2015 Airheadsfly.com editor Elmer van Hest

Preparing for the flight, with a reminder of home on the helmet. (Image © Anders Hjärp)
Preparing for the flight, with a reminder of home on the helmet. (Image © Anders Hjärp)
Proud faces! (Image © Anders Hjärp)
Proud faces! (Image © Anders Hjärp)