With the approach of the arrival of the fighters in the Brazilian skies, some doubts about what will be the employment scenarios of the Gripen gain light. To assist in understanding the main actions of the Brazilian Air Force (FAB), Major Aviator Ramon Lincoln Santos Fórneas, operational coordinator of the Fox Group - named after the team of six fighter pilots dedicated to coordinate the operational deployment of the new FAB combat aircraft - highlighted the three main missions that Gripen will be entrusted with performing as soon as they arrive in Brazil and begin serving the Air Force.
"When we received the mission to determine the employability of Gripen, we began studies on the actions that this aircraft could carry out to meet the needs of the FAB," explained Major Fórneas. The aviation of hunting contemplates several actions and, therefore, the group raised numerous scenarios on how to make the best use of the capabilities of this aircraft of last generation. "We selected three specific actions for Gripen to perform as soon as they arrived at the Brazilian Air Force: air defense, sweep and escort actions."
According to Fórneas, air defense basically consists of protecting the Air Force's means, bases and airplanes against external threats. "In this case, the aircraft acts close to borders to combat illicit traffic in drugs and weapons in order to protect the national territory," he explained. Another example is the performance in major events as was the case of the World Cup and the Olympics that took place in the country. "We had several aircraft doing the air defense action during the games."
The scanning action is when the hunt aims to detect, identify and neutralize or destroy enemy airborne vectors in airspace of interest to ensure, for example, that friendly aircraft enter hostile territory with more offensive characteristics.
The escort is when defending specific means of the FAB. "An example of an escort is when the Gripen is given a takeoff mission to protect a specific force, such as the KC-390 multi-mission aircraft, flying over enemy territory to launch parachutists, for example," the Major explained.
Brazil needs this technology
It is very common to hear questions from Brazilians about the need to acquire a fleet of supersonic fighters since the country is not in a war situation. "We are not really in a conflictive scenario, but we need to defend ourselves against other real and relevant threats, since Brazil is a unique country in natural resources such as the Amazon and the Pre-salt. The Gripen is fully inserted in this context and the Air Force is being prepared to use its means against these hypotheses ", justified the major.
Gripen will engage in these mapped scenarios with a capacity far superior to those found today in the FAB fleets, especially in the areas of autonomy, performance, embedded equipment, war power, refueling in flight, among others. "The new hunting goes far beyond what we currently have. There is no comparison parameter ", he finished.