Saab JAS 39 Gripen New Generation
During his work as a Senior Manager Projects & Engineering at RUAG Aerospace in Emmen (Switzerland) from 2007 to 2010, Oliver Schmidt managed the development project of a 450 U.S. gallon drop tank demonstrator for the multi-purpose SAAB JAS 39 Gripen New Generation military jet for test flights and demonstrations.
Excerpt from wikipedia:
The Saab JAS 39 Gripen (griffin) is a lightweight single-engine multirole fighter manufactured by the Swedish aerospace company Saab. It was designed to replace the Saab 35 Draken and 37 Viggen in the Swedish Air Force (Flygvapnet).
The Gripen has a delta wing and canard configuration with relaxed stability design and fly-by-wire technology. It is powered by the Volvo-Flygmotor RM12 engine, a derivative of the General Electric F404, and has a top speed of Mach 2. Later aircraft are equipped for in-flight refuelling; most of the export aircraft have been designed to be compatible with NATO interoperability standards.
In 1979, the Swedish government began development studies for an aircraft capable of fighter, attack and reconnaissance missions to replace the Saab 35 Draken and 37 Viggen. A new design from Saab was selected and developed as the JAS 39, first flying in 1988. Following two crashes during flight development and subsequent alterations to the aircraft's flight control software, the Gripen entered service with the Swedish Air Force in 1997. Upgraded variants, featuring more advanced avionics and adaptions for longer mission times, began entering service from 2003 onwards.
In order to market the aircraft to export customers, Saab has formed several partnerships and collaborative efforts with multiple overseas aerospace companies; examples of such efforts include Gripen International, an joint partnership between Saab and BAE Systems formed in 2001. Gripen International was responsible for marketing the aircraft, and was heavily involved the successful export of the type to South Africa; the organization was later dissolved amidst allegations of briberybeing employed to secure foreign interest and sales. On the export market, the Gripen has achieved moderate success in sales to nations in Central Europe, South Africa and Southeast Asia. As of 2012, more than 240 Gripens have been delivered or ordered.
A further development of the Gripen, often referred to as Gripen NG or Super Gripen, is in development as of 2013. Amongst the changes includes the adoption of a new powerplant, the General Electric F414G, an active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar, and significantly increased onboard fuel capacity. Other derivatives, including a navalised Sea Gripen for carrier operations and an optionally-manned aircraft capable of unmanned operations, have also been proposed by Saab.