The Gripen team introduces another new industrial project with Austria


Metallic foams have enormous potential as structural and functional
materials in lightweight designs. One of the new projects of the SAAB-
BAE SYSTEMS Gripen AB´s industrial cooperation in connection with a
future Gripen fighter aircraft contract is focusing on this new

The Austrian partner in the project is Alulight International GmbH. The
ambition of Alulight is to develop and manufacture customer specific and
advanced high tech aluminum products.

Research into potential uses for metal foams in the automobile industry
and other industrial areas and the optimization of the materials and
manufacturing processes are within the scope of this project. Metallic
foam is at a density level of just 15 to 20 % of the solid metal
offering excellent specific properties such as vibration and sound
damping, high strength and stiffness, and thermal and electrical
properties. Metal foams also have a low environmental impact.

The primary goal of the project is to forge alliances between Alulight
and Swedish, British, and international industry with a demand for
lightweight metal with specific characteristics of aluminum and other
metallic foams. So far great interest for metallic foam has been seen in
the Swedish automotive area but aerospace applications could prove to be
the next important field.

The Gripen Team, benefiting from the knowledge and resources of
companies such as Saab, BAE SYSTEMS, Ericsson, Volvo and Investor AB,
one of the world's largest industrial holding companies, has extensive
experience in the development of cooperation programs for military
hardware and many other high technology areas.

"Our customers profit from an industrial cooperation concept that is
fundamentally different than that of traditional compensation
agreements. This concept creates new jobs and ensures long-term growth
in countless key industrial sectors through direct foreign investments,
export promotion and technology transfer, as well as through a number of
other measures focusing on commercially sound business" explains Johan
L.Eliasson, Vice President, Business Value Development at Saab. Besides
its unbeatable industrial benefits the Gripen industrial cooperation
program will create thousands of jobs in Austria in key future-oriented

In addition to manufacturing and marketing the NATO-compatible Gripen,
Saab Aerospace promotes the export of the multi-role/swing-role fighter
in cooperation with BAE SYSTEMS and has an excellent record in offset
agreements in Austria. In 1994, the Austrian government confirmed the
fact that 70 Austrian companies profited from the compensation
agreements associated with the purchase of the Draken and that the
business volume well exceeded the agreed scope in the same period.

For further information please contact:
Marie Aktö, Communications Manager, SAAB-BAE SYSTEMS Gripen
Tel: +46 (0) 13 18 4216, Mobile: +46 (0) 70 989 71 10

John Neilson, Head of Communications, SAAB-BAE SYSTEMS Gripen
Tel: +44 (0) 1252 38 4795, Mobile: +44 (0) 802 33 7704 /

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