Saab has completed its first test firing of the Meteor beyond visual range air-to-air missile (BVRAAM) from a Gripen E fighter.
The Meteor missile was fired from an altitude of approximately 16,500 feet (5 kilometers) over the Videl Test range in northern Sweden, where it displayed “a successful end-to-end result on the target,” according to the company.
The Gripen E’s flight test program is part of the firm’s more comprehensive trial series to assess the platform’s military capabilities, tactical systems, and weapons integration.
“It feels very good that we have now completed the first test firing with Meteor from Gripen E. It is a very important milestone both for the program and for Saab,” Saab Head of Flight Test & Verification Mikael Olsson said.
“It shows that the weapon capability of Gripen is at the absolute forefront.”
The Meteor Missile
The Meteor is an advanced BVRAAM developed by European missile developer MBDA.
This weapon system will reportedly be able to operate in various environments and engage many threats, including autonomous light aerial vehicles, cruise missiles, and other fighter aircraft.
The Meteor program is among Europe’s most successful air-to-air missiles, considered a “game-changing” asset for air combat.
“This success is a great demonstration of the close partnership between MBDA and Saab, which after many years of active co-operation continues to go from strength to strength,” MBDA Europe Vice President Jim Price said.
“This trial also excellently shows off our joint ability to rapidly integrate weapon capabilities onto the all new Gripen E.”
Modernizing Gripen E Fighters
Last April, the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration awarded Saab a $53 million contract to modernize the country’s JAS 39 Gripen C/D fighter aircraft.
The deal covers cost-effective aircraft upgrades to maintain its full deployment until 2030.