Air International 2021-02
A.Korsakul - The Gripens guarding the Gulf
No 701 Sqn ‘Shark’ is now operating seven single-seat Gripen Cs. One was lost in a fatal accident but the unit expects to bolster the number back to eight in 2023
A pair of Royal Thai Air Force Gripens patrol over the Gulf of Thailand
RTAF Gripen and Saab 340 AEW flying together over the Gulf of Thailand
RTAF Gripen, Saab 340 and Saab 340 AEW during a Wing 7 combat-ready ceremony in 2013
Puttapong ‘Cotto’ Polchiwin (left) and Charoen ‘Tonic’ Wattanasrimonkol (right), seen here in 2014, were two of the original four Gripen pilot-instructors of the RTAF, and are now group captains. 'Cotto' is Wing 7 Commander, while ‘Tonic’ is Wing 1 Commander
For the anti-shipping role, the RTAF Gripens are armed with the RBS-15F, as seen here
A Gripen C on patrol over the Gulf of Thailand fitted with IRIS-Ts on the wing rails for within-visual-range combat, and two AIM-120C AMRAAMs for beyond visual range
A pair of Gripen patrol over an oil rig in the Gulf of Thailand. No 701 Sqn is the only RTAF unit with a maritime strike capability
This RTAF Gripen pilot wears a Saab/BAE Systems Cobra Helmet Mounted Display System as a standard unit. The Cobra is integrated with IRIS-T to maximise the missile’s capability
The ‘elephant walk’ of Wing 7 comprises all 11 Gripens from 701 Sqn and one Saab 340 AEW from 702 Sqn, as seen here during a national defence exercise in November 2020
This Saab 340 transport 70202 was later configured into a ELINT/ECM aircraft along with a second example, 70207