Royal Thai Air Force To Upgrade Saab 340 AEW&C

Thailand operates quite an eclectic fleet of aircraft from around the world, but it does have plans to modernise and streamline its inventory.

Thailand is working to fill capability gaps in its military aircraft fleet, including transport and trainer types, and upgrading existing platforms such as its Saab 340 special mission aircraft.

The S100B Argus airborne early warning and control aircraft entered service with the Swedish Air Force in 1997. The S100B is a Saab 340B aircraft, built by Saab Aircraft, with an Erieye mission radar from Saab (formerly Ericsson) Microwave Systems.

Six S100B Argus aircraft were produced for the Swedish Air Force, four of which are permanently equipped with early warning radar and two fitted for transport missions during peacetime.

In July 2006, Saab was awarded a contract to upgrade two of the Swedish Air Force’s S100B aircraft for surveillance missions and for deployment in multi-national operations. The two upgraded aircraft, the Saab 340 AEW-300, were delivered to the Swedish Armed Forces in April 2009.

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In November 2007, Thailand announced the intention to buy two S100B AEW aircraft from the Swedish Air Force. The first S100 B AEW aircraft was delivered in 2010. The second aircraft, fitted with Erieye radar, is scheduled for delivery in 2013.

On patrol the aircraft operates at a typical cruise speed of 300km/h and at an altitude of 2,000m to 6,000m depending on the mission parameters.

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