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Saab early warning aircraft arrives

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The Royal Thai Air Force now has two new, rather strange-looking, aircraft. 

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Surathani Wing 7 held a welcoming ceremony for its new Saab AEW aircraft yesterday. SUPAPONG CHAOLAN

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Saab early warning aircraft arrives

The Royal Thai Air Force now has two new, rather strange-looking, aircraft.

At first glance they look like ordinary small passenger planes with turboprop engines. If you take a closer look, however, you will see that each is equipped with a long box-like container on the top of the fuselage.

The aircraft, the Saab AEW from Sweden, is an early warning aircraft and the box-like container holds its radar system.

One was delivered last year and the second arrived on Tuesday at Don Muang military air base, later heading to Wing 7 in Surat Thani for a welcoming ceremony that was held yesterday.

Altogether the air force has bought 12 Gripen fighter jets from Sweden along with the two Saab 340 AEW’s and one Saab 340 transport aircraft for 34 billion baht. Six of the Gripen jets are already here along with the Saab 340 transport and the remaining fighter jets will be delivered by next September.

The Saab 340 AEW will provide a link with the navy’s fleet of warships, said Air Chief Marshal Araya Ngampramuan, the air force’s chief of staff.

The plane will also control the network system used to operate Gripen fighter jets. In the future, it is expected that the aircraft will also be able to link with F5 and F16 fighter jets, strengthening the country’s defence capabilities, ACM Araya said.

Adapted from a story in today’s Bangkok Post.

warning – an action or statement telling someone of a possible problem or danger การเตือน
glance – looking quickly at something/somebody  แวบมอง, ชายตามอง, เหลือบดู
ordinary – not unusual or different in any way ธรรมดา, ปกติ
turboprop – a gas turbine engine (an engine that receives its power from a wheel turned by gas pressure) which turns a propeller (ใบพัด) เครื่องยนต์ที่ต่อกับใบพัดเครื่องบิน
container – something used for storing or holding things หีบบรรจุ
fuselage – the main part of an aircraft in which passengers and goods are carried ส่วนลำตัวเครื่องบิน
deliver – to take goods, letters, etc. to the people they have been sent to  ส่ง
base – a place where an army, a navy, etc. operates from ฐานทัพ
transport – moving people or things from one place to another การขนส่ง
provide – to cause something to exist or be available ให้
link – a connection การเชื่อมต่อ
fleet – a group of ships, or all of the ships in a country's navy ขบวนเรือ
Air Chief Marshal – an officer of very high rank in the air force พลอากาศเอก
chief of staff – the most senior officer in the army, navy, or air force  เสนาธิการ
operate – to use or control a machine or make it work เดินเครื่อง
defence – protecting somebody/something from damage, attack, etc.  การป้องกัน, การต้าน, การพิทักษ์
capability – the ability to do something ความสามารถ

Related search: Saab 340 AEW, Royal Thai Air Force

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