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July 25, 2019

It’s a testament to the odd alliances and unlikely partnerships of the early Cold War that the final aircraft designed by the legendary Willy Messerschmitt — indeed his only supersonic design — was manufactured not in Europe but in the industrial city of Helwan, just o...

March 5, 2019

SA Flyer January edition featured an in-depth look at the Saab Gripen. While lauded for its agility, diverse ordnance load, and ability to use short runways, one aspect of the Gripen that makes as big an impact on its combat performance is its world-leading integration...

February 27, 2018

Electronic Warfare in the SAAFAs discussed last month, any modern air force which does not have a mastery of Electronic Warfare (EW) is placing its aircraft and air crew at huge risk, not only from peer competitors, but from rebel groups, insurgencies, and other non-st...

November 22, 2017

On Wednesday 25 October, a German Air Force (GAF) Airbus Military A400M-180 touched down at Cape Town International Airport, the first time the GAF had sent one of their brand-new transports to the country. 

The aircraft was there to collect some of the final remaining...

October 16, 2017

The acquisition by Angola of eight Su-30KNs, Uganda of six Su-30MK2s, Gabon of two Mirage F1AZs, and Zimbabwe of twelve K-8s, are just some of the examples of recent African air force acquisitions that were performed mostly in secret, with little to no civilian oversig...

September 20, 2017

In last month’s edition of FlightCom, I highlighted the first flight of the second AHRLAC prototype and discussed some of the unique aspects and features that have made the programme so fascinating. Without any doubt, launching a brand-new military aircraft in South Af...

September 20, 2017

In a year of challenging economic conditions, Denel, like many South African government owned companies and parastatals, received negative publicity due to alleged links with the Guptas – a joint venture with VR Laser Asia. On 25 August, at the company’s annual financi...

June 22, 2017

The SAAF Air Capability Demonstration at Roodewal is unique in that it is the only demonstration for civilians that uses live ammunition. This year’s demonstration on 1 June at AFB Makhado was one of the most exhilarating ever.

SAAF 2 Squadron hosted the event in collab...

June 22, 2017

The Gripen C and D operated by the South African Air Force (SAAF) can, in a pinch, do something few other contemporary fighter aircraft are capable of: refuel at an austere airfield using nothing more than standard fuel drums.

This is because, in addition to the industr...

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