- Saab 32 Lansen
name = Saab 32 Lansen
Attack aircraft, Fighter aircraft
caption = A Saab 32 at Kristianstad Airshow 2006
first flight =
3 November1952 (P1150 prototype)
introduction = 1955
retired = 1997 (S 32C and J 32D)
primary user =
Swedish Air Force
more users =
produced = 1953-1959
number built = 450
unit cost =
The Saab 32 Lansen (Swedish: "lance") was a two-seater
attack aircraftproduced by SAABfrom 1955 to 1960 for the Swedish Air Force("Flygvapnet"). During its long operational life, the Saab 32 also served as a fighter, reconnaissance, electronic warfare and even as a target-tug aircraft.
Design and development
The Saab Company was approached in 1948 to develop a turbojet-powered strike aircraft to replace a series of 1940s vintage attack, reconnaissance and night-fighter aircraft in the Flygvapnet: the Saab B 18/S 18, J 21R/A 21R and J 30 (
de Havilland Mosquito). The design was initially designated the P1150.
Swedish Air Force requirements for the P1150 were demanding: the aircraft had to be able to attack anywhere along Sweden's 1,245 miles (2000 km) of coastline within one hour of launch from a central location. It had to be capable of being launched in any weather, day or night. Special attention was to be paid to integrating the electronics and weapons systems to create the equivalent of today's weapons systems approach to combat aircraft design. The aircraft was to be armed with four 20 mm cannon, rockets, bombs and/or a new anti-ship missile being developed, the Rb 04.
The design team created a sleek airframe with clean lines powered by a license-built
Rolls-Royce AvonSeries 100. Uniquely, the design of the swept wings was the result of an early application of computer technology. To test the 35° sweepback design, a half-scale wing was mounted on a Saab Safir, the Saab 202 Safir. The design initially featured both Fowler flaps and a leading edge slot. The slot was discarded as unnecessary after trials with the prototypes and never appeared on a production aircraft. A small batch of P1150 prototypes completed design and evaluation trials with series production of the newly renamed Saab J 32 Lansen ("Jakt" [Fighter] ) beginning in 1953. There were no trainer versions, but some Lansens had rudimentary controls installed in the rear seat.
Soon after entering squadron service, the J 32 Lansen broke the sound barrier on 25 October 1953 when a production aircraft exceeded Mach 1 in a shallow dive. The J 32 carried four 30 mm
ADEN cannons while the A 32 ("A" stands for attack) had an armament of four 20 mm Boforsm/49 cannon and the Rb 04C anti-ship missile, one of the earliest of its type in western service. The Lansen normally was fitted with two missiles but it could also carry an additional missile. Its main role was to prevent any Soviet invasion across Sweden's extensive coastline.
One planned use of the A 32A was to deliver nuclear warheads or chemical weapons. Sweden had an active nuclear weapons program during the 1950s and 1960s, but no weapons were ever produced. [ Agrell, Wilhelm. "Svenska Förintelsevapen: Utvecklingen av Kemiska och Nukleära Stridsmedel 1928-1970". Lund, Sweden: Historiska Media, 2002. ISBN 91-89442-49-0.]
The A 32 Lansen was Sweden's last purpose-built attack aircraft. Throughout the
Cold Waryears, the Lansen distinguished itself with a solid if unspectacular career; Swedish pilots often described it as pleasant to fly. Gradually being replaced by more modern types, the Saab 32 soldiered on into the late 1990s. Two still remain operational with the sole task of taking high altitude air samples for research purposes in collaboration with the Swedish Radiation Safety Authority.
;A 32A:Ground attack and maritime strike version. 287 aircraft built between 1955 and 1958, retired in 1978. Armed with four 20 mm Bofors nose guns (license-built Hispano-Suiza Mk V guns) and could carry two SAAB 304 missiles or unguided rocket pods.;J 32B:All-weather fighter version initially operated only for bad weather / night fighter duties. 118 aircraft built between 1958 and 1960, retired in 1973. Armed with four 30 mm ADEN guns, Rb-24 missiles (license-built
AIM-9 Sidewinder) and could carry radar-guided air-to-air missiles, or 75 mm unguided rocket pods. J 32B was powered by stronger Svenska Flygmotor RM 6A (Rolls-Royce Avon Mk 47A) engine.;S 32C:Specialized maritime and photo reconnaissance version developed from A 32A. 44 aircraft built between 1958 and 1959, retired in 1978. Equipped with PS-432/A radar with extended range and with four cameras - two SKa 17 and two SKa 18.;J 32D:Target tug version. Six J 32B were modified, retired in 1997.;J 32E:ECM (electronic warfare / electronic countermeasures) version used also for ECM training. Fifteen J 32B were modified, retired in 1997. Aircraft was equipped with jamming system G 24 in one of three versions (for L, S or C bands) used for jamming ground and naval radars. Additionally "Adrian" (for S and C bands) and "Petrus" (for X band) pods were used for jamming aerial radars.;J 32AD:Project of day fighter version from 1953 as interim solution between the J 29 Tunnan and J 35 Draken, designated J 32AD ("D" stands for "Dag" [day] ). Aircraft was lighter, without radar and armed with four 20 mm and one 30 mm guns in nose and different missiles. None built, 120 Hawker Hunterfighters bought instead.;J 32U:Project of fighter version from 1954 ("U" stands for "utveckling" [development] ) with much better performance than J 32B. Aircraft was equipped with stronger Rolls-Royce RA 19R engine and had improved wing design.
Swedish Air Force
F 1 Hässlö
F 6 Karlsborg
F 7 Såtenäs
F 12 Kalmar
F 14 Halmstad
F 21 Luleå
pecifications (J 32B)
ref="The Great Book of Fighters" [ Green, William and Gordon Swanborough. "The Great Book of Fighters". St. Paul, Minnesota: MBI Publishing, 2001. ISBN 0-7603-1194-3.]
plane or copter?=plane
jet or prop?=jet
span main=13.0 m
span alt=42 ft 8 in
length main=14.94 m
length alt=49 ft 0 in
height main=4.65 m
height alt=15 ft 3 in
area main=37.4 m²
area alt=402.6 ft²
empty weight main=7,500 kg
empty weight alt=16,535 lb
loaded weight main=
loaded weight alt=
max takeoff weight main=13,500 kg
max takeoff weight alt=29,760 lb
engine (jet)=Svenska Flygmotor RM6A
type of jet=afterburning
number of jets=1
thrust main=47.0 kN dry, 65.3 kN with afterburning
thrust alt=10,560 lbf / 14,685 lbf
max speed main= 1200 km/h
ceiling main=15,000 m
ceiling alt=49,200 ft
range main=2,000 km
range alt=1,240 mi
climb rate main=100 m/s
climb rate alt=19,685 ft/min
*4x 30 mm
ADEN cannons 90 rounds each
*4x Rb 24 air-to-air missiles
*4x 75 mm air to air rocket pods
List of fighter aircraft
List of military aircraft of Sweden
* Erichs, Rolph et al. "The Saab-Scania Story". Stockholm: Streiffert & Co., 1988. ISBN 91-7886-014-8.
* Taylor, John W.R. "Saab 32 Lansen (Lance)." "Combat Aircraft of the World from 1909 to the present". New York: G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1969. ISBN 0-425-03633-2.
* "This Happens in the Swedish Air Force" (brochure). Stockholm: Information Department of the Air Staff, Flygstabens informationsavdelning, Swedish Air Force, 1983.
* [http://www.canit.se/~griffon/aviation/text/32lansen.htm Webpage about A 32]
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