Gripen is tailormade for short take off and landings. Here, a Gripen C from the Swedish Air Force using an 800 m long and 16 m wide public road as an airstrip during exercise Aurora 17. The Gripen also has good short takeoff performance, being able to maintain a high sink rate and strengthened to withstand the stresses of short landings. A pair of air brakes are located on the sides of the rear fuselage; the canards also angle downward to act as air brakes and decrease landing distance. It is capable of flying at a 70–80 degrees angle of attack.
The Saab JAS 39 Gripen (English: “griffin”) is a light single-engine multirole fighter aircraft 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 flight controls. It is powered by the Volvo RM12, and has a top speed of Mach 2. Later aircraft are modified for NATO interoperability standards and to undertake air to air refuelling.
A further version, designated Gripen JAS 39E/F, is under development as of 2014; it has been referred to as Gripen NG or Super-JAS. The changes include the adoption of a new powerplant, the General Electric F414G, an active electronically scanned array radar, and significantly increased internal fuel capacity. Saab has proposed other derivatives, including a navalised Sea Gripen for carrier operations and an optionally manned aircraft for unmanned operations. Sweden and Brazil have ordered the Gripen E/F and Switzerland initially selected it for procurement. As of 2013, more than 247 Gripens have been built.