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First flight Brazilian Gripen E

How Pilots Prepare Themselves to Fly Gripen

2 min read + Video

A new video under the True Collaboration web series that shows how Brazilian pilots are preparing themselves to fly the Gripen fighter has been released. The video encompasses various parts of the extensive training in Sweden, at Saab in Linköping and at F-7 in Såtenäs including 9G training and how to handle a situation if parachuting into the sea.

The 9G or centrifuge training is important as it prepares the pilots for high levels of acceleration that can lead to a reduced blood flow to the brain causing a loss of consciousness. To prepare for the high Gs, the pilots sit in a centrifuge which can pull Gs like real in-flight conditions. They are then instructed to stiffen their legs and abdominal muscles. They are also asked to do short breaths while keeping their muscles tensed. The G forces are gradually increased in the centrifuge so that the pilots can practise their anti-G techniques. The pilots typically needs to withstand 9G force for about 15 seconds to pass the test.

Besides the 9G training, water survival training is also very important as it prepares the pilots for emergency landing in water if needed. As a part of this training, the Gripen pilots hone their righting, self-stablisation and parachute releasing skills. They also learn parachute disentanglement if their parachute lands on water. As seen in the video, the Gripen pilots undergo the training in choppy and turbulent water to prepare them for the worst.

Another important part of the training is the hypoxia symptom recognition training in which the pilots learn to handle decreased oxygen pressure at high altitudes. The tasks helps them to understand the impact of less oxygen on their body and learn about measures to survive the scenario.

These training processes are very important and prepare a Gripen pilot for the actual training which consists of the conversion training and combat training. After completing the ongoing training in Sweden, these pilots will return to Brazil and prepare to receive the Gripen fighters. Their training will continue in the new flight simulator at Wing 2, in Anápolis (GO).