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  #1  
Old April 15th, 2002, 07:00 AM
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which aircraft should IAF/indian navy opt for

There is a wide speculation that IAF is goin for around 120+ mirage 2000-5 aircrafts and also Indian navy is finalising deal for an carrer based fighter aircraft..possibly 50 MIG 29K...also it is believed that india has shown interest on carrier-based RAFALE aircraft version ...which one of the two (MIG 29K Or Rafale) is more suited in this case...i will be posting details of all three aircrafts on tueday...
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Old April 15th, 2002, 07:03 AM
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RAFALE JET

RAFALE MULTI-ROLE COMBAT FIGHTER, FRANCE
Rafale is a twin-jet combat aircraft capable of carrying out a wide range of short- and long-range missions, including ground and sea attack, air defence and air superiority, reconnaissance, and high-accuracy strike or nuclear strike deterrence.

The aircraft has been developed for the French Air Force and Navy. 61 have been ordered (36 for the Air Force and 25 for the Navy) out of a total requirement of around 300 (234 for the Air Force and 60 for the Navy). 10 had been delivered by the end of 2001. The Rafale is produced in three variants, M,B and C. The Rafale M variant is a single seater carrier-based version for the navy, B and C are a two seater and a single seater for the Air Force. The Rafale M entered service in 2001 and two aircraft are on the Charles de Gaulle aircraft carrier. Rafale B and C will enter service in 2003. A two-seater Rafale N version is being developed for the Navy for delivery in 2008.

COCKPIT

The cockpit has hands-on throttle and stick control (HOTAS). The cockpit is equipped with a head-up, wide-angle holographic display from Thales Avionique, which provides aircraft control data, mission data and firing cues. A collimated, multi-image head-level display presents tactical situation and sensor data, and two touch-screen lateral displays show the aircraft system parameters and mission data. The pilot also has a helmet-mounted sight and display. A CCD camera and on-board recorder records the image of the head-up display throughout the mission.

WEAPONS

The Rafale can carry payloads of over nine tons on 14 hardpoints for the Air Force version, and 13 for the naval version. The range of weapons includes Mica, Magic, Sidewinder, ASRAAM and AMRAAM air-to-air missiles; Apache, AS30L, ALARM, HARM, Maverick and PGM100 air-to-ground missiles; and Exocet/AM39, Penguin 3 and Harpoon anti-ship missiles. For a strategic mission, the Rafale can deliver the MBDA (formerly Aerospatiale) ASMP stand-off nuclear missile. Main weapons are expected to be the MBDA (formerly Matra BAe Dynamics) MICA air-to-air missile and Apache/Scalp air-to-ground missile, and the MBDA (Aerospatiale) AS 30 laser-guided missile.

The Rafale has a twin-gun pod and a GIAT 30mm DEFA 791B cannon, which can fire 2,500 rounds per minute.

The Rafale is equipped with laser designation pods for laser guidance of air-to-ground missiles.

COUNTERMEASURES

The Rafale's electronic warfare system is the Spectra from Thales. Spectra incorporates solid state transmitter technology, radar warner, DAL laser warning receiver, missile warning, detection systems and jammers.

SENSORS

The Rafale is equipped with an RBE2 radar, developed by Thales, which has look-down and shoot-down capability. The radar can track up to eight targets simultaneously and provides threat identification and prioritisation.

The optronic systems include the Thales/SAGEM OSF infrared search and track system, installed in the nose of the aircraft. The optronic suite carries out search, target identification, telemetry and automatic target discrimination and tracking.

NAVIGATION AND COMMUNICATIONS

The communications suite on the Rafale uses the Saturn onboard V/UHF radio, which is a second-generation, anti-jam tactical UHF radio for NATO. Saturn provides voice encryption in fast-frequency hopping mode. The aircraft is also equipped with fixed-frequency VHF/UHF radio for communications with civil air traffic control. A multifunction information distribution system (MIDS) terminal provides secure, high-data-rate tactical data exchange with NATO C2 stations, AWACS aircraft or naval ships.

Rafale is equipped with a Thales TLS 2000 navigation receiver, which is used for the approach phase of flight. The TLS 2000 integrates the instrument landing system (ILS), microwave landing system (MLS) and VHF omni-directional radio ranger (VOR) and marker functions.

The radar altimeter is the AHV 17 altimeter from Thales, which is suitable for very low flight. The Rafale has a TACAN tactical air navigation receiver for en route navigation and as a landing aid.

The Rafale has an SB25A combined interrogator-transponder developed by Thales. The SB25A is the first IFF using electronic scanning technology.

ENGINE

The Rafale is powered by two M88-2 engines from SNECMA, each providing a thrust of 75kN. The aircraft is equipped for buddy-buddy refuelling with a flight refuelling hose reel and drogue pack.
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Old April 15th, 2002, 07:10 AM
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MIG 29K

Type: Fleet air defense with an ASV and Recon role.

Versions in Service: MiG-29K - Single-seat fighter.
....................................MiG-29KUB - Dual-seat trainer.

Design Features: With a 25-year design life, the 'export' MiG-29K features a larger wing area, incorporating a longer chord double-slotted flap and drooped elevons over the 'basic' MiG-29K. The wing root has a sharp leading edge. In addition, the central fuselage integral tank and a fuselage load-carrying section, to which the arrester hook and main struts are attached, were considerably strengthened, and additional fuel is carried in the fuselage spine. The nose undercarriage is able to steer through +/- 90º and houses a three-colour lamp which indicates the aircraft's position on the glide path, and its landing speed, to a visual landing signal officer. The arrester hook is also fitted with an illumination system to indicate when it is lowered.

The aircraft will have an improved navigation equipment commensurate with its maritime role. For deck landing, the aircraft will be fitted with a special navigation system comprising instrument landing systems interacting with the ship's markers, jam-resistant coded data link and automated built-in test facilities. In the event of the pilot having to eject near the carrier, the novel escape system will ensure that he is ejected clear of the ship. The export 'K' will have a triplex digital fly-by-wire control system, with multiple-redundancy in all three channels and a mechanical back-up in roll-and-yaw channels. A proven control algorithm used in the analog-digital flight control system on the basic 'K' will be retained. It is possible that some avionics components will be produced by French or Indian companies.

The dual-seat 'KUB' trainer has identical aerodynamic characteristics to the single-seat 'K' fighter and has the same wing and tail plane platform geometry. To further ease transition from the trainer to the fighter, even the forward nose sections are identical. They are equipped with similar avionics and can carry the same armament. Both aircraft have an in-flight refuelling capability, having a retractable refuelling probe in the port forward fuselage, and may also be used as tankers. With the take-off and landing weights identical to the fighter, the trainer has 8% less fuel capacity and 7 to 10% shorter combat radius. In addition to carrying out its main training role, the trainer has a fully operational capability. Indeed, the two man crew could open up additional roles such as airborne early warning or electronic warfare. In its combat role, the second pilot will act as a weapons systems operator.

Accommodation: Pilot seated on a 10º inclined K-36DM/2-06 zero/zero ejection seat under rearward hinged transparent blister canopy in high seat cockpit. Sharply inclined one piece covered windscreen. Three internal mirrors provide the rearward view.

Engine: Two Klimov/Sarkisov RD-33 Series 3M turbofans each producing 11,100 lbs thrust dry, 18,300 lbs thrust in reheat and 19,180 lbs thrust in an emergency reheat. Engines for the Indian Navy's MiG-29Ks will have smokeless combustors, an anti-corrosive coating, a basic overhaul time of 1,000 hours and a short-time increased take-off-thrust rating.

Speed: Mach 1.93 - maximum level speed at altitude.
..............870 mph - at low level.

Operational Ceiling: 57,410 ft. (15,600 meters).

Maximum Climb Rate: 58,200 feet.

Maximum Combat Radius: 700 nautical miles - external fuel tank.
................................................450 nautical miles - with internal fuel.
*Endurance at 32 nautical miles from carrier - 2+ hours.

Avionics: The MiG-29K will have a Phazatron Zhuk-M (N-010) pulse Doppler radar, which has a planar slotted antenna array which is capable of acquiring 32 sq. ft. radar cross section airborne targets at a range of 50 miles. It has an azimuth scan angle of +/- 85º, an elevation scan angle of +/- 60º, and can track ten targets and designate four of them simultaneously. It also features a high-resolution mapping and ground target localisation mode. The Fulcrums will keep the radar's hardware but the software will be significantly updated. The cockpit will incorporates two large-screen, multi-function, liquid-crystal displays and HOTAS (Hands On Throttle And Stick).

The Fulcrums will also be fitted with a proven SUV-29M weapons management system, which has been tested in the MiG-29M and MiG-29K. Successful test-firings of the R-77RVV-AE and R-73RDM2 air-to-air missiles, and the Kh-31A2 anti-ship missile has been conducted using the system. The SUV-29M is equipped with the RLPK-29UM pulse Doppler radar navigation-attack system, which forms part of the Zhuk-M radar; the OEPrNK-29M optical-electronic navigation and attack system, which has a laser range-finder, and IR/TV sensors; and a helmet-mounted sight.

The aircraft's avionics will be based on MIL-STD 1533 bus. The core of the onboard computer command system will be all Russian and will include a central computer, four target designation systems (radar, TV, IR and helmet-mounted sight) and a head-up display. Although primarily to be armed with Russian weapons, Western weapons may be offered as an option. Integration of Western-made weapons is not expected to present problems, as RSK MiG has amassed experience of a variety of Western weapon systems during development of the Russian-French MiG-AT jet trainer and the mating the Kopyo radar on the MiG-21-93 for the IAF.

Weapons: Due to an integrated weapon selection panel, the MiG-29K can use a wide range of weapons, which includes no less than eight types of air-to-air missiles and 25 air-to-surface weapons. The weapon selection system enables the pilot to fire more than one type of weapon per attack. The aircraft is armed with an internal 30mm GSh-301 gun, with 150 rounds.

In the air superiority role the close-combat R-60MK and the R-73RDM2, the medium-range R-27RE1/TE1 and the long-range R-77RVV-AE air-to-air missiles can be carried. In the air-to-surface role, the aircraft can be armed with the Kh-31P2 anti-radar missile, the Kh-31A2 anti-ship missile, the AS-20 (air-launched Kh-35) anti-ship missile, the TV-guided Kh-29T missile, the TV-guided KAB-500Kr bomb, S-8 unguided rockets or S-24B rockets, plus 550 lbs or 1100 lbs dumb bombs.

Maximum Combat Load: 12,125 lbs.

Self Defence: The electronic warfare (EW) suite will likely consist of the Sirena-3 Radar Warning Receivers, two ECM transponders in the wing strake and chaff/flare dispensers built into the upper surfaces of the main wing. Each dispenser contains flares or chaff cartridges.

Comments: A $1.5 billion contract (as part of the Admiral Gorshkov aircraft carrier package) will supply the Navy with around 50 carrier-based MiG-29K aircraft. Unit cost of the aircraft, including the air-to-air and the air-to-surface armament, will be approximately $30 million. Deliveries will be made in batches and will commence some time before the upgrade of the vessel has been completed and before the ship is transferred to India. Under the yet-to-be-signed contract, the vessel is scheduled to go to sea by late 2002 or early 2003.

The most important part of the MiG-29K/KUB program for the Indian Navy is the creation of a modern logistics system. Hence, RSK MiG has been developing such a system, involving aircraft operation with major overhauls, reduced maintenance man-hours, and full use of the infrastructure already existing in India for the servicing and repair of the MiG-29K fighters, and their equipment and engines, as well as an automated spares record and supply system.

The 'export' MiG-29K is based on the 'basic' MiG-29K airframe, but is lighter in answer to the Indian Navy's requirements for the smallest possible dimensions to maximise use of space on the carrier, Admiral Gorshkov. Details of the variant were confirmed by Nikolai Nikitin, RSK-MiG's General Designer. Nikitin says the aircraft is based on the original MiG-29K airframe, but without high-cost welded aluminium lithium fuel tanks and forward fuselage. The land-based MiG-29's over-wing auxiliary tanks have been deleted, and the sharp-edged leading-edge root extensions are filled with fuel to extend the aircraft's range.
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Old April 15th, 2002, 07:16 AM
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MIRAGE 2000 MULTI-ROLE COMBAT FIGHTER, FRANCE
Mirage 2000 is a multi-role combat fighter from Dassault Aviation of France. It has been operational with the French Air Force since 1984, and has been selected by Abu Dhabi, Egypt, Greece, India, Peru, Qatar, Taiwan and the United Arab Emirates.

Mirage 2000 fighters in operation with the French Air Force include: Mirage 2000C/B single-seater and two-seater for air defence; Mirage 2000N two-seater, designed for all weather nuclear penetration at low altitude and very high speed; and Mirage 2000D, which is an upgraded version of the Mirage 2000N, for automated bombing using conventional and laser-guided munitions.

Mirage 2000-5 is the latest of the Mirage 2000 family, and incorporates advanced avionics, new multiple-target air-to-ground and air-to-air firing procedures using the RDY radar, and new sensor and control systems. Orders for 110 Mirage 2000-5s have been placed by the air forces of France (37, with 20 delivered), Taiwan (60), Qatar (12) and Greece. Greece is to acquire 15 Mirage 2000-5 Mk 2 aircraft and upgrade ten of its Mirage 2000s to the same standard. The United Arab Emirates has ordered 30 2000-9 aircraft, a customised version of the 2000-5. India has ordered 18 Mirage 2000Ds.

COCKPIT

Mirage 2000-5 is available as a single-seater or two-seater multi-role fighter. The aircraft has hands-on throttle and stick (HOTAS) control. Mirage 2000-5 incorporates the Thales VEH 3020 head-up display and five cathode ray tube multifunction advanced pilot systems interface (APSI) displays. The combined head-up/head-level display is collimated at infinity, and presents data relating to flight control, navigation, target engagement and weapon firing. Sensor and system management data is presented on two coloured lateral displays.

WEAPONS

Mirage 2000 has nine hardpoints for carrying weapon system payloads: five on the fuselage and two on each wing. The single-seat version is also armed with two internally mounted, high-firing-rate 30mm guns.

Air-to-air weapons include the MICA multi-target air-to-air intercept and combat missiles, and the Magic 2 combat missiles, both from MBDA (formerly Matra BAe Dynamics). The aircraft can carry four MICA missiles, two Magic missiles and three drop tanks simultaneously. The Mirage 2000-5 can fire the MBDA Super 530D missile or the MBDA Sky Flash air-to-air missile as an alternative to the MICA missile.

Mirage 2000 is also equipped to carry a range of air-to-surface missiles and weapons including laser-guided bombs. These include the MBDA BGL 1000 laser-guided bomb, MBDA (formerly Aerospatiale) AS30L, MBDA Armat anti-radar missile, MBDA AM39 Exocet anti-ship missile, MBDA rocket launchers, MBDA Apache stand-off weapon, and the stealthy cruise missile, SCALP. The Mirage 2000-9 aircraft ordered by the United Arab Emirates will carry the Black Shahine missile that is being developed by MBDA.

TARGETING
Mirage 2000 has an upgraded digital weapon delivery and navigation system (WDNS). The aircraft can be fitted with a TV/CT CLDP laser designation pod from Thales Optronique, which provides the capability to fire laser-guided weapons by day and night. The 2000-5 Mk 2 will have the Damocles pod with thermal imaging camera, also from Thales Optronique.

Mirage 2000 is equipped with a multi-mode Thales RDY doppler radar, which provides multi-targeting capability in the air defence role, and the radar also has look-down/shoot-down mode of operation. The radar can simultaneously detect up to 24 targets and carry out track while scan on the eight highest priority threats.

COUNTERMEASURES

The aircraft is equipped with a self-protection suite installed internally. Mirage 2000-5 carries the ICMS Mark 2 automated integrated countermeasures system from Thales Detexis. ICMS Mark 2 incorporates a receiver and associated signal processing system in the nose section for the detection of missile command data links. The system can be interfaced to a new programmable mission planning and a post-mission analysis ground system.

ENGINES

Mirage 2000 is equipped with an SNECMA M53-P2 turbofan engine, which provides 64kN thrust and 98kN with afterburn. The air intakes are fitted with an adjustable half-cone-shaped centre body, which provides an inclined shock of air pressure for highly efficient air input.
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Old April 15th, 2002, 07:21 AM
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well lookwise RAFALE looks sexy to me..dunno much abt. technical features..would luv to hear Gpel n padhu pai's view abt. the aircrafts and ofcourse the ability of these aircrafts to screw PAF/ puki. NAVY

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Old April 15th, 2002, 09:26 AM
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Sorry for the delay in replying.

Where carrier based aircraft are concerned, to be frank if given a choice, i would not buy neither the Rafale or the Mig29. But then thats my thinking and others would not agree. The thing is that each aircraft carrier is different. It would all depend on the range of the aircraft carrier, the number of planes it can carry and the amount of support that it will get from sea skimming missiles and other enemy ships.

Lets take this in a generic form, with some crude numbers.

Lets begin with the much touted admiral gorkhov aircraft carrier which India wants. India obviously doesnt have the bandwidth or the mulla to retrofit this ship with nuclear propulsion, so its going to be a diesel unit. That will give this ship a rough range of 2500 km or lets say 500km out in the water to survire for about 15-20 days without refueling. Now if the ship has to sustain itself in a war scenario, for an extended period of time, the ship has to have a tremendous air and sea cover to protect the carrier from attack.

Now lets assume, that this ship is in the arabian sea about 400-500 km out. In case of war with pukistan, the aircrafts on board this ship have to have the capability to fly their sorties from thsi deck and get back. Considering that our folks are still looking at mid-air refueling tankers, lets assume that this is not available for now. That would mean on a fally loaded heavy weight, the Migs will have a sortie range of about 1500-2000km. That sure sounds a lot but in combat and bombing runs this will not be enough.

Also lets not forget admiral gorkhov is a ship which was already in the dumps. Mig-29 and the Rafale are both much bigger than the Harriers. So the number of planes on the carrier will be limited.

Do we need Migs or Rafele, Yes, we do need them, BUT not now. We first need to get soem good martime reconance aircraft, some inflight refueling aircrafts. These will be the thing sthat will really make India a blue water navy. Right now we dont have the capability to fight a two front naval war. Our one aircraft carrier is inevitable in dry dock for the last few months, leaving the waters open for attack.

So i think people like george fernandes et all, should stop palying hide and seek with defence deals and really start getting some modern equipment before its too late.
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Old April 15th, 2002, 09:54 AM
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Has the deal of admiral Gorshkov been finalized? I thought it was unable to enter the mumbai harbor because of its 45000 tons and deep draught? Wont it be logical to place it in mumbai harbor if it has to be used against puki land? On top of it, as per russian defense reviews, that ship is only capable of carrying helicoptors or VTOL types. Does not sound like it will handle a mig29 version.

Also, it being one of the priciest of purchases (the retrofit is supposed to cost 3K crores and then the accessories (the SU's and the MIGs another 6K crores) I do not think the top navy brass will ever risk this in a Indo puki scenario..

VKS pai.. price of each aricraft kyaa hai?

Also, as it stands now, the puki navy is no match to Indian Navy. The sheer size of Indian Navy will keep the puki navi out of hostile action. Karachi port can be disabled by Indian Navy cutting off all aid thru shipping lines without taking major losses. But yes its time our politicos stopped twiddling their thumbs and commit to some modernization. Especially with INS viraat scheduled to be decommissioned in 2005 or 2006.

Quote:
According to Pavel Felgenhauer, a Russian defence analyst, “the Gorshkov is suitable only as a helicopter carrier. Neither the Gorshkov nor the MiG-29K fighters Russia is offering to equip it with, have ever been tested in a conventional aircraft carrier role".
Sounds like it will be a stupid move to go ahead with this purchase..
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Last edited by GpeL; April 15th, 2002 at 10:03 AM.
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Old April 15th, 2002, 10:01 AM
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ditto.

gpel it seems to me over a couple of years of my research that either the think tanks are in defense acquisition department are total nit wits or its monetary aid which is being pushed to close deals becuase i dont see logic in some deals.
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Old April 15th, 2002, 10:10 AM
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These guys are 100% nitwits and also at the same time are filling their pockets. Phadu bhai what I do not understand is why they shelved the 100% Indian aircraft carrier design. (I heard they shelved it or delayed it until 2010). I do not have the full details but it was said to be a very impressive design and on top of it, atleast it gives some valuable experience compared to buying ship that has been subject to fire damage, Rotting for some time, needs extensive refitting and on top of it has questionable usefulness and questionable capabilities.

The politicians should at the very least leave defence procurment to professionals and not make them weapons for their fancy MOU's that determine foreign relations.
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Old April 15th, 2002, 11:16 AM
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From the choices, The Rafale seems to come across better technologically (even though you do not mention the radar range etc.) But for the role they intend to play, they are more are less evenly matched and so pilot skill will be a major deciding factor. For Indian Defense, taking the MIG29k Or the mirage is better from the standpoint of induction/training maintenance etc.

Phadu pai wot you thinks?
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Old April 15th, 2002, 11:20 AM
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For a carrier based aircraft, i would definately go in for the Rafale. Another interesting aircraft that the navy can look to is the new version of the Eurofighter.
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Old April 15th, 2002, 11:38 AM
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Exclamation The IAF is living in a period of tragic-comedy

Major General Ashok K Mehta

The IAF has a history of many a slip between the cup and the lip. Recently, in Nagpur, the chief of air staff, Air Chief Marshal A Y Tipnis, announced that the decision to acquire an advanced jet trainer would be taken before the end of the year, but that it would take up to 30 months for the AJT, whichever it is, to be delivered.

For those of us who have been following the AJT saga, these could be another set of famous last words. The IAF is living in a period of tragic-comedy as confirmed by the story of the Sukhoi 30 fighter.

When the advanced multi-role Su-30 was called into the IAF in 1996, the country was oblivious to what had transpired in the previous three years. There was no air staff requirement (ASR) for such a class of fighter, as the chief of air staff had dismissed the Sukhoi as "irrelevant to the IAF".

Air Chief Marshal S K Kaul had also criticised Russia for failing to provide critical product support. But six months later, he reversed his opinion and the government, without even signing a contract, paid an advance of Rs 5 billion to Russia's Irkutsk Aircraft Production Organisation for developing an aircraft that did not exist.

After the initial order for 40 Su-30MKIs, followed by another 10, India recently signed a letter of intent to produce, under licence, another 140 aircraft of the same make. The intention is fraught with risks and uncertainties much more serious than the ones that went with the decision to acquire the Sukhoi 30 MKI in the first place.

But the idea of licensed production is not new. The secretary for defence production had suggested that only eight aircraft be purchased and the remaining be made in the country. The idea was shot down.

The first eight Su-30s arrived in 1997, but were non-operational in the absence of any matching weapons. Further, the Russians had dumped used support equipment as new. Only two years later did the Su-30 acquire its primary profile as SU-30K.

The first prototype of the intermediate version -- SU 30MK -- with state-of-the-art aerodynamics was test-flown in Bangalore, but later, on June 12 this year, crashed at the Le Bourget Paris Air Show.

This confirmed reports about the infighting between the Sukhoi organisation and Russia's arms export agency, RosVooruzheniye, and raised doubts about Sukhoi's credibility and capability to design and produce a super-multi-role fighter. A turf battle has been going on between the two for some time. In December 1999, the IAF took delivery of another 10 Su-30Ks, which were originally meant for Indonesia.

The delivery schedule of the final version, Su 30MKI, is very complicated, given the rush of conversions and fitting avionics from French, Israeli and Russian companies. The best-case scenario of the 50 Sukhois becoming operational is 2006, though the government says 2003.

After India went nuclear in 1998, the IAF went into raptures justifying the choice of the Su-30 as a strategic long-range deterrent against China. The air-to-air refuellers that would give the Su-30 the required range and endurance for this have yet to be ordered.

Further, refuellers have to remain well within Indian airspace, thereby limiting the range of the Su-30. In any case, by the time these strategic bombers get operational, Agni III, the primary strategic deterrent, should be in place, making the Su-30, at best, a backup force.

China is rapidly modernising its air force. It already possesses around 70 to 100 Su-27 single-seaters. It is quite possible it might opt for a few two-seater, multi-role SU-30MKs.

Some senior Air Force officers are wondering whether the decision to produce 140 more Su-30MKI under licence is a wise option. While the detailed project report on establishing a production facility must be awaited, preliminary estimates on costs are likely to make the IAF have second thoughts. It is proposed to replace the MiG-21 plant at Nasik, which is technology of the 1940s, with a modern facility. Experts at Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, Bangalore, have estimated this cost at around $1 billion and around four years to set up.

The amortised per unit cost of the Su-30MKI will be a staggering Rs 1.61 billion. The up-front cost of the multi-role aircraft is the avionics and weapons fit. The 25 tonne Su-30MKI has eight hard points to carry another eight tonnes of missiles and bombs. This will cost money. That is not all. The hidden expenditure lies in the ownership or life-cycle cost, which in Russian aircraft is very high compared to the Western versions. The life-cycle cost of an Su-30MKI is likely to shoot up to Rs 4.5 billion.

Why is the maintenance and life support to Russian aircraft so expensive and complicated? First, the engine life is short and the TBO (Time Between Overhauls) low. After every 300 hours of flying, a lifespan of 3,000 hours, the engine has to be changed. The Su-30MKI has two engines. This gives it immense power and aerodynamics, which depend on canards and thrust vectoring for superb agility. After every 300 hours of flying, two engines, each costing $5 million, will need replacement.

The second problem relates to the IAF's flight philosophy. To this day, it has been woven around single-seater planes. By introducing the twin-cockpit concept, the IAF is arguably revolutionising the flying philosophy for its pilots, who, for want of an AJT, have been on an erratic learning curve.

Further, it will need to develop dedicated software for the crew. The IAF is already short of 400 pilots. If all goes well, the last of the 140 SU-30MKIs will roll out in 2018. By then, an additional 400 pilots would be required to cope with this.

The Su-30MKI, which the IAF neither asked for nor required, is an excellent multi-role fighter. In view of the high costs of licensed production and ownership, the IAF has to decide whether it wants to produce this aircraft and also if it could do with a mix of single- and twin-seater versions.

The options are:


to buy outright another 200 Su-30MKIs in a mix of 150 single- and 50 twin-seater versions; or

to buy two to three squadrons of the improved Mirage 2000-5.

The earlier Mirage 2000-H has an excellent flight safety and operational flying record. Only three out of 49 aircraft have crashed, two from bird-hits. Another 10 Mirage 2000-H have been ordered, five twin-seater trainers and five single-seaters, and will be delivered over the next two years.

to include the French offer of the Mirage 2000-5 while evaluating the option of licensed production. The Mirage overhaul factory at Gwalior, which is at present underused, could then be maximised. Diversification will enable the IAF to slowly loosen the Russian stranglehold on its inventory.

The biggest snag in building air power to bolster India's security has been inept and erratic decision-making. Thanks to the whims and fancies of air chiefs, there has also been no continuity in sustaining its long-term re-equipment plan. The government has played no mean role in this. Time and cost overruns have afflicted every project, be it the LCA, AJT, Su-30MK and even the MiG-21 BiS upgrade.

To a lesser extent, unfortunately, this is the story of the other two services too. Till an integrated higher defence management system is put in place, the IAF will not take off, with or without the Su-30 MKI.

Ad-hocism has become integral to defence planning and equipment acquisition.


http://www.rediff.com/news/2000/nov/17ashok.htm
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  #13  
Old April 15th, 2002, 10:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by GpeL

VKS pai.. price of each aricraft kyaa hai?
gpel pai..all the above three aircrafts r prized between 25-30million USD each...
admiral gorshow refitting cost is 800 million USD n price of 50 MIG 29K is 1.5 billion USD..so in all the total cost of aircraft carrier+weapon systems is close to 2.3 billion USD

and the aircraft carrer supports STOVL aircrafts (Short take-off n vertical landing) and STOBAR (Short Take-Off But Arrested Recovery)

i feel that it will give navy a added punch in high-seas vis-a-vis puki or chinese navy...i mean having 2 aircrafts on either costs looks a cool idea to me n yeah a correction [b] INS VIRAAT has completed re-fitting n is in blue waters now..it will be taking part in a joint indo-saudi (i think thats the country) naval exercise somewhere next month...also india ha s signed n MOU with france for the licensed production of 6 scorpene class submarines
which r far better than pukis augusta
regarding reconaissane aircrafts..i think we already have TU-142 maritime rec. aircrafts n also negotiating for TU-22 strategic bombers to counter pukis P3C orion n atlantique rec. aircraft...i think the deal will be thru in some 2-3 months to come...but my point is that in case of war our air force can easily wipe out these puki rec. aircrafts, kyon??

btw to learn more abt admiral gorshow n its capabilties here's the link http://bharat-rakshak.com/NAVY/Gorshkov.html
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  #14  
Old April 15th, 2002, 10:22 PM
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and padhu pai..recently concluded defence deals boasts or 3 mid-air refuelling aircrafts from russia..i'em not in a position to provide link now bcoz i read it in newspaper..will post as soon as i get one..also phalcons r on their way bcoz russia has already completed the air-frames of the aircraft supporting the iareali avioonics n green-pine radar..
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