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The Saab 35 Draken "1955"

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The Saab 35 Draken

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The Saab 35 Draken

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The Saab 35 Draken

The Saab 35 Draken (IPA: [²drɑːkɛn]; ‘The Kite’ or ‘The Dragon’)[Nb 1][2] is a Swedish fighter aircraft developed and manufactured by Saab between 1955 and 1974. It was the first fully supersonic aircraft to be deployed in Western Europe[3] and the first known aircraft to do the Cobra maneuver.[4][5][6]

The Draken was developed during the 1940s and 1950s to replace Sweden’s first generation of jet-powered fighter aircraft, the Saab J 29 Tunnan and, later, the fighter variant (J 32B) of the Saab 32 Lansen. It featured an innovative double delta wing; in order to test this previously-unexplored aerodynamic feature, a sub-scale test aircraft, the Saab 210, was produced and flown. Developed in Sweden, the Draken was introduced into service with the Swedish Air Force on 8 March 1960. It received the designation J 35, the prefix J standing for Jaktflygplan (Pursuit-aircraft) – the Swedish term for fighter. Early models were intended purely to perform air defence missions, the type being considered to be a capable dogfighter for the era.

Design

At the dawn of the Jet Age, Sweden foresaw a need for a jet fighter that could intercept bombers at high altitude as well as engage fighters. During September 1949, the Swedish Air Force, via the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration, released its recently formulated requirement for a cutting-edge interceptor aircraft that was envisioned to be capable of attacking hostile bomber aircraft in the transonic speed range.The original requirement specified a top speed of Mach speed 1.4 to 1.5, but in 1956, this was revised upwards to Mach 1.7-1.8.

It had to be flown by a single pilot, yet be capable of conducting combat operations under all weather conditions, night or day, while operating out of relatively austere airstrips, carrying all equipment needed to neutralize modern jet bombers. Although other interceptors like the US Air Force‘s F-104 Starfighter were being conceived at the time, this fighter would have to undertake a role unique to Sweden; the ability to operate from reinforced public roads, which were to be used as part of wartime airbases. The aircraft also needed to be refueled and rearmed in no more than ten minutes by conscripts with minimal training

Saab

J35 Draken

Role Fighter aircraft
National origin Sweden
Manufacturer Saab
First flight 25 October 1955
Introduction 8 March 1960
Retired 2005 (Austria)
Status Retired from military service
Primary users Swedish Air Force
Austrian Air Force
Finnish Air Force
Royal Danish Air Force
Produced 1955–1974
Number built 651
Variants Saab 210

Operators

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Saab J35 Draken "Fighter"

Saab 210 Draken
Also known as Lilldraken, a scaled-down, proof of concept experimental aircraft to evaluate the double delta wing configuration
J 35A
Fighter version, total production 90 including prototypes.[11]
J 35B
Fighter version, built and delivered between 1962 and 1963, total production 73.
SK 35C
25 J 35As with short tail sections rebuilt into a twin-seated trainer version.
Fighter version, delivered between 1963 and 1964, total production 120. The aircraft had a new and more powerful Rolls-Royce Avon 300 (RM6C.
S 35E
Reconnaissance version, total production 60 with 32 built from scratch and the remainder converted from the J 35D model.

J35 Draken "1955": Specifications

  • Crew: 1
  • Length: 15.35 m (50 ft 4 in)
  • Wingspan: 9.42 m (30 ft 11 in)
  • Height: 3.89 m (12 ft 9 in)
  • Wing area: 49.2 m2 (530 sq ft)
  • Airfoil: 5%
  • Empty weight: 7,865 kg (17,339 lb)
  • Gross weight: 11,000 kg (24,251 lb)
  • Max takeoff weight: 11,914 kg (26,266 lb)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Svenska Flygmotor RM6C afterburning turbojet engine, 56.5 kN (12,700 lbf) thrust dry, 78.4 kN (17,600 lbf) with afterburner
  •  
  • Maximum speed: 2,450 km/h (1,520 mph, 1,320 kn) at 11,000 m (36,089 ft)
  • Maximum speed: Mach 2
  • Ferry range: 2,750 km (1,710 mi, 1,480 nmi) with external drop tanks
  • Service ceiling: 20,000 m (66,000 ft)
  • Rate of climb: 199 m/s (39,200 ft/min)
  • Wing loading: 231.6 kg/m2 (47.4 lb/sq ft)
  • Thrust/weight: 0.7
  • Takeoff roll: 800 m (2,625 ft)
  •  
  • Guns: 1× or 2× 30 mm AKAN M/55 ADEN cannon with 100 rounds per gun (in Saab 35F one cannon was omitted to fit avionics needed for Falcon missile integration,[19] earlier variants and export variants retained twin guns.)
  • Hardpoints: six for ordnance, or drop tanks on the bottom two hardpoints, with a capacity of 2,900 kg (6,393 lb),with provisions to carry combinations of:
    • Rockets: 2× 75 mm air-to-ground rocket pods ventrally or 12× 135 mm rockets on six underwing pylons [28]
    • Missiles: Rb 24Rb 27 and Rb 28 air-to-air missiles [19]
    • Bombs: The Danish export version, (F-35), was modified according to NATO standards and was fitted with 1,000lb bomb hardpoints[
  •  

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A 2012 Jane's Aerospace and Defense Consulting study compared the operational costs of a number of modern combat aircraft, concluding that Gripen had the lowest cost per flight hour (CPFH) when fuel used, pre-flight preparation and repair, and scheduled airfield-level maintenance together with associated personnel costs were combined. The Gripen had an estimated CPFH of US$4,700 whereas the next lowest, the F-16 Block 40/50, had a 49% higher CPFH at $7,000.

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