keesje
Posts: 8598
Joined: Thu Apr 12, 2001 2:08 am

Saab Gripen Slightly Underpowered?

Fri Mar 14, 2003 4:48 am

Looking at the thrust of the 404 (8 kN) and the empty & MTOW it looks like Gripen is not a very high powered fighter. (comapred to mig 29, F16, F18, etc.)

Although it probably is an excellent aircraft, doesn't this translate itself in average climb rate, limited sustained speed in high AOA dog fights and perhaps limited ordenance when operating from roads ?

With a 10/11 kN engine it probably would have a much better "jagt" performance.
"Never mistake motion for action." Ernest Hemingway
 
Staffan
Posts: 3879
Joined: Tue Mar 18, 2008 9:21 am

RE: Saab Gripen Slightly Underpowered?

Fri Mar 14, 2003 10:16 am

Comparing Gripen and F18, Gripen has both an empty weight and MTOW about half of the F18's. Since they share the same basic engine, their thrust to weight ratio should be about the same depending on the version of the F18.
Also, considering it's a single engine jet, it will need to carry less fuel for it's operations than a twin engine a/c that weighs twice as much.
What I've heard, it has pretty impressive climb performance, and short runways don't seem to be much of a problem even at high take-off weights. It's also an unstable a/c which gives it very good turning performance.

Regards,

Staffan
 
jwenting
Posts: 9973
Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2001 10:12 pm

RE: Saab Gripen Slightly Underpowered?

Fri Mar 14, 2003 8:09 pm

Thrust alone isn't everything either.
Aerodynamic shape has a lot to do with it, and Gripen's shape is more advanced than that of earlier generation aircraft.
Then there's mission. Gripen's designated primary mission might not require as much thrust as that of the F-16.
etc. etc.
I wish I were flying
 
keesje
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Joined: Thu Apr 12, 2001 2:08 am

RE: Saab Gripen Slightly Underpowered?

Sat Mar 15, 2003 2:10 am

Having a lighter engine will require to use the afterburner more often e.g. during take-off. This is bad for range.

F16 is about a light as Gripen. F18 is heavier but not twice as . .

It could easy lose the initiative in dogfights if oposing fighter is a e.g. mig29.
"Never mistake motion for action." Ernest Hemingway
 
Staffan
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RE: Saab Gripen Slightly Underpowered?

Sat Mar 15, 2003 2:45 am

What numbers do you have for their respective weights and thrusts?

Thanks,

Staffan
 
jwenting
Posts: 9973
Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2001 10:12 pm

RE: Saab Gripen Slightly Underpowered?

Sat Mar 15, 2003 5:06 pm

http://www.canit.se/%7Egriffon/aviation/gripen/
says 54KN, 80.5KN with reheat.
empty weight 5700kg, TOW in AA config 8500kg, MTOW 14000kg.

F-16A (according to a book I have):
66.5KN, 108.1KN with reheat
empty weight 6900kg, AA profile 10600kg, MTOW 17000kg

F/A-18A (different book):
2x 77KN
empty weight 9900kg, AA config 15700kg, MTOW 23500kg

According to another source, the engines of the F/A-18 are 86-91KN each and that of the Gripen 81.5 (not 80.5).

Note that my data on the F-16 and F/A-18 isn't the latest. Engine upgrades may have increased their thrust ratings (and MTOW probably).
I wish I were flying
 
Alessandro
Posts: 4962
Joined: Wed Sep 12, 2001 3:13 am

RE: Saab Gripen Slightly Underpowered?

Sat Mar 15, 2003 11:40 pm

The good thing about Gripen is that no Swedish made fighter been involved in any fighting since 1960ies and Congo, with the flying barrel! That´s pretty impressive I think....

From New Yorqatar to Califarbia...
 
atenara
Posts: 92
Joined: Mon Feb 24, 2003 4:41 pm

RE: Saab Gripen Slightly Underpowered?

Wed Mar 19, 2003 5:11 pm

Hey, at least it's better than the Philippine Air Force F-5A freedom fighters.
like they say for the Philippines, all air but no force.

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