Saab JA 37 Viggen: A Look Inside the Cockpit

The Saab JA 37 Viggen: A Look Inside the Cockpit

The Saab JA 37 Viggen, or simply Viggen, is a supersonic, single-engine, multirole jet fighter aircraft designed and manufactured by Saab in Sweden. It was the first combat aircraft designed to be fully integrated with Sweden’s air defense system, and it was considered a revolutionary aircraft for its time.

The Viggen was designed to operate from short, unprepared airstrips, and it was equipped with a powerful engine that allowed it to take off and land in challenging conditions. It was also designed to be highly maneuverable, and it was capable of performing complex aerial maneuvers.

The Viggen Cockpit

The Viggen’s cockpit was a marvel of engineering for its time. It was designed to be highly ergonomic and user-friendly, and it was packed with advanced technology. The pilot sat in a reclined position, which provided better visibility and reduced the effects of G-forces during high-speed maneuvers.

The cockpit was equipped with a variety of instruments and displays, including a head-up display (HUD), a radar altimeter, and a navigation system. The pilot could also control the aircraft’s weapons systems and communication systems from the cockpit.


The Viggen’s HUD was one of its most innovative features. It projected essential information, such as airspeed, altitude, and target data, onto the pilot’s windshield. This allowed the pilot to keep their eyes focused on the outside world while still having access to critical information.

The Radar Altimeter

The Viggen’s radar altimeter provided the pilot with accurate altitude information, even in low-visibility conditions. This was essential for safe navigation and landing, especially when operating from short, unprepared airstrips.

The Navigation System

The Viggen’s navigation system was capable of guiding the aircraft to its destination, even in bad weather. It used a combination of inertial navigation and radar to determine the aircraft’s position.

The Weapons Systems

The Viggen was equipped with a variety of weapons systems, including air-to-air missiles, air-to-surface missiles, and bombs. The pilot could control these weapons systems from the cockpit.

The Communication Systems

The Viggen’s communication systems allowed the pilot to communicate with other aircraft, ground stations, and command centers. This was essential for coordinating air operations and receiving mission updates.


The Saab JA 37 Viggen was a highly advanced aircraft for its time, and its cockpit was a testament to the ingenuity of its designers. The Viggen’s cockpit was designed to be highly ergonomic and user-friendly, and it was packed with advanced technology that allowed the pilot to control the aircraft’s systems and weapons. The Viggen was a truly remarkable aircraft, and its cockpit was a key factor in its success.