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Ukrainian pilots manage to master JAS 39 Gripen in just 2 months. Is this aircraft so simple?

15 September, 2023 Friday
14:38

Ukrainian pilots successfully completed an "introductory exercise" JAS 39 Gripen. This experience may affect the final decision of Sweden to transfer aircraft to Ukraine

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Defense Express writes about it.

According to Swedish Defense Minister Pål Jonson, Ukrainian pilots successfully completed an "introductory exercise" JAS 39 Gripen aircraft. This exercise includes ground technician training, simulator training for pilots, and actual flights on the Gripen aircraft.

This matters as, according to the Swedish Ministry of Defense, one of the criteria influencing Sweden's decision to send JAS 39 Gripen aircraft to Ukraine will be the experience of passing the training course by Ukrainian pilots.

The Ukrainian Armed Forces' pilots and aviation specialists were able to complete the "introductory training" on the JAS 39 Gripen in just two months. Furthermore, the complexity of the training equipment and the pilots' degree of foreign language skill in this case did not have an impact on how long the training took. This was not the case with the F-16 exercise.

“Is the Gripen so simple that our pilots mastered it in just 2 months? But to find the answer to this question, we can only speculate. Given the sensitivity of the issue, neither Sweden nor our country is likely to disclose significant details of the JAS 39 "familiarization training" process,” Defense Express writes.

The first assumption is that the personal qualities of Ukrainian pilots and aircraft technicians who were chosen for training may have played a role in speeding up the process, as those people have great experience and high flexibility in a constantly changing environment.

The second assumption, which can be built independently here, is that the United Kingdom could have played a role in speeding up the process of the exercise. The British have the Empire Test Pilots' School (ETPS), which owns at least one combat training JAS 39D Gripen that could also play in Ukraine’s favor.

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