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” Security ” Special Aero India 2017 Edition 
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My Take

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SOURCE: Himansu Swain/ FOR MY TAKE / IDRW.ORG

It had been over a half-long decade when both INDIA & RUSSIA were decided to develop a Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft (FGFA) by sharing 50-50 portions of money, engineering & intellectual property. But many factors affected the deal’s proceeding like Russians’ demand on heavy prices as well as their reluctance on sharing technology, Indian Gov hesitant attitude on investing heavy money & etc.

As Indian gov realized facts from the previous SU-30MKI programme when Russian bullied India over technology sharing & developed their own powerful SUKHOI version (SU-30SM) with Indian money, it made a clear way for Indian air force & Bureaucracy to ignore FGFA deal. Meanwhile, India’s growing proximity towards EUROPE & USA is the major reason of FGFA failure. Continue reading

SOURCE: THOMAS D’SOUZA / FOR MY TAKE / IDRW.ORG

Israeli company, Elta after winning contract, to supply 61 Elta’s ELM-2052 AESA radar to be equipped on DARIN-3 upgraded Jaguar fleet of Indian Air Force was largely seen as in the driver seat before India’s state-owned Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) invited overseas bids for 80 active electronically scanned array (AESA) radars and electronic warfare (EW) suites to be equipped on soon to be developed Tejas Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Mk 1A variant.

Request for quotation (RFQ) for 80 AESA radars issued last December had asked for fast delivery scheduled since the project is expected to go alive by 2019 followed by production by 2021. Israel Aerospace Industries/Elta (Israel), Raytheon (United States), Rosoboronexport (Russia), Saab (Sweden), and Thales (France) were some of the companies which received RFQ but tight delivery schedule meant not all agreed to participate. Continue reading

SOURCE: Satyajeet Kumar/ FOR MY TAKE / IDRW.ORG

A top American defense think-tank of RAND Corporation in their latest report entitled, “Hypersonic Missile Nonproliferation: Hindering the Spread of a New Class of Weapons.” has advised US Government to work with Russia and China to deny export of complete hypersonic missile systems or their major components to other countries, including India to restrict spread of Hypersonic missile technology .

Russia, China, and the United States are only 3 countries which have active Hypersonic missile programs which have already entered developmental testing stage and it is believed that a production variants will emerge soon post 2020 from either of this countries. Continue reading

SOURCE: THOMAS D’SOUZA / FOR MY TAKE / IDRW.ORG

India’s quest to buy Combat drones from Israel and United States seems to be heading to nowhere after reports emerged that both Israel and the United States have suddenly developed cold feet on supply and transfer of Combat Drone technology to India.

India’s request for 100 Stealth Combat Avenger Drones are still pending with Trump administration and India’s closest exporter of defense equipment over the years, Israel too wants to restrict the sale of combat drones to India in lieu of new export restriction imposed by Israeli government reportedly under American pressure. Continue reading

SOURCE: VISHAL KARPE / FOR MY TAKE / IDRW.ORG

Aloud Siren followed by Room televisions getting switched on automatically to inform on the emergency broadcast channel that North Korea has just fired a missile over Japan and letting its citizen know what to do next is what fear Japanese citizens in western part of Japan lives by every time North Koreans fire a missile towards Japan.

Shimane, Hiroshima, and Kochi are few of the Japanese cities which are always on high alert for possible North Korean fired intermediate-range ballistic missile landing in their backyard in case the North’s missiles malfunction while over Japan. Continue reading

SOURCE: Anand SG / FOR MY TAKE / IDRW.ORG

Thier is no doubt now that American Defence major Lockheed Martin with its F-16 Block-70 is in driver’s seat when it comes to India’s Single-engined fight jets program for a requirement of 114 jets. But does Swedish Saab has an ally in India to become the darkhorse in the race to clinch the deal from Americans?.

While Government of India can be seen totally inclining towards Lockheed Martin’s F-16 Block-70, but Indian air force has not shown the same level of inclining and support towards F-16s. IAF in its candid admission has said that if allowed to decide between both F-16 Block-70 and Gripen-E, the force will choose the later for various reasons. Continue reading

SOURCE: VINAYAK SHETTY / FOR MY TAKE / IDRW.ORG / VIDEO CREDIT NOOR ALAM

The first video of Defence and Research Development Organization (DRDO) developed Smart Anti-Airfield Weapon (SAAW) launched from Jaguar DARIN-II has surfaced online.

SAAW is an indigenously designed and developed 120 kg class smart weapon capable of engaging ground targets with high precision up to a range of 100 km. Continue reading

SOURCE: THOMAS D’SOUZA / FOR MY TAKE / IDRW.ORG

Post-1962 war with China, Indian Air Force felt a need for modern supersonic interceptor aircraft and quickly English Electric Lightning, Lockheed F-104 Starfighter and Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-21 were shortlisted. F-104 Starfighter came with superior avionics and construction was top notch in comparison to Soviet-developed MiG-21.

Electric Lightning lost favor pretty soon with IAF and Lockheed F-104 Starfighter was selected by India. Since F-104 were supplied to Pakistan Air Force a year earlier in 1961, Indian government felt that Americans will oblige to Indian request just after 1962 war with China and will agree to the sale of F-104 Starfighter to India but then came a shocker. Continue reading

SOURCE: MANJUNATH REDDDY/ FOR MY TAKE / IDRW.ORG

Exactly 30 years ago, in last week of September month of 1987, Israeli Cabinet voted to halt development of the Lavi fighter jet, which was to be Israel’s which was to be Israel’s main advanced combat aircraft for the 1990’s.

Program was canceled as a result of pressure from the Reagan Administration and instead, Israel went on to purchase 90 less-expensive American-made F-16 fighters were brought instead which will follow on contracts expanded to 200 units over the years but lead to Lavi once dubbed as most advanced 4th generation fighter jet ever developed went to scrapyard instead of production line and how Tejas MK-2 might see repeat of Israel’s Lavi fate due powerful American lobbying. Continue reading

SOURCE:  ABHOY ROY / FOR MY TAKE / IDRW.ORG

When LCA-Tejas was proposed in early 80’s, idea was to replace bulk of Soviet-era Mig-21s variants which made up nearly 50% of the fleet strength of the Indian Air Force with an indigenous plane to break free India’s dependence from foreign fighter aircraft manufactures.

As India’s threat perception evolved, one to one replacement of Mig-21 with LCA-Tejas was long abandoned and by the time aircraft entered production it had confirmed orders for only 123 jets which is far less production run than originally anticipated. Continue reading

SOURCE: THOMAS D’SOUZA / FOR MY TAKE / IDRW.ORG

Chinese military spokesman confirmed that China’s first stealth fighter J-20 has officially entered service with the People’s Liberation Army Air Force thus becoming third stealth fighter to enter service with any air force, after the F-22A Raptor and the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter.

J-20 made its first official first flight in 2011 and made into People’s Liberation Army Air Force one year before assessment made by Pentagon which had told its government that it will become operational by end of 2018 but Defence experts are still skeptical if the aircraft is fully operational at squadron level. Continue reading

SOURCE: Punit Wagajkar/ FOR MY TAKE / IDRW.ORG

A clash between two fighter planes depends on much more on the skill of the pilots flying them then the technologies incorporated in them. Many examples can be presented where a Russian fighter has drowned its western counterparts. Similar is true vice-versa. In many instances, the aircraft involved were at the same technology level. So it is true that the pilot matters the most.

Coming to the competition, are the two contenders really capable of making itself into IAF? Gripen is a multi-national component machine, similar to Tejas. It’s C/D version are not battle proven. Gripen-E is still an evolutionary phase. 40% of its parts are procured from the USA. So, as per analysts, USA can pull the plugs on Gripen by any hook or crook and that too at a time of its choosing. Continue reading

SOURCE: MANJUNATH REDDDY/ FOR MY TAKE / IDRW.ORG

India’s longest running Premier Public sector Aerospace company Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) is facing order crunch due to the ever-increasing participation of Private Aerospace companies in Indian Defence Sector. Crunch especially has been felt at fighter aircraft segment after Government of India decides to keep HAL off the Single engine and Twin engine fighter jet requirement for 200 fighter jets and instead allowed Private Aerospace companies to partner with winning International partner.

HAL Chief recently voiced his concerns about this, since production and assembly of fighter aircraft for HAL always has been a very lucrative business which contributes immensely towards companies year-on-year growth and profits, while company is doing good business with its Rotary orders it still faces no new orders as a production agencies for its fighter aircraft division. Continue reading

SOURCE: Anand SG / FOR MY TAKE / IDRW.ORG

                                    R-73 used for Representation Pic

Enforcing Air Superiority in a war always will remain a primary factor for Indian Air Force and critical driving force which will factor in will be Air-Air Missile (AAM) deployed. AAMs now not only determine the outcome of a dogfight but it will also determine the outcome of the war.

In the pursuit to enforce Air Superiority doctrine and boost its fighter weapon system design and development. India’s premier weapons research and development organization ” DRDO” achieved an important milestone when its Astra MK1 Beyond Visual Range Air-to-Air Missile (BVRAAM) achieved 7 Successful launch and interceptions of Aerial targets tested out in real combat situations with indigenous seeker thus completing its developmental trials which first begin in 2003. Continue reading

SOURCE: Arush singh / FOR MY TAKE / IDRW.ORG

After a tedious MMRCA tender, with years of trials and all, the tender was scrapped. IAF is facing acute shortage of fighter jets and IN too needs more carrier based fighters. IAF needs another line of light fighters to replace MIG 21/27 fleet to fill the gap with a cheap, low maintenance and effective fighter. A good decision to fill the void as soon as possible.

But, on what basis it was decided that a light fighter can be the one viz single engine? A light fighter should be classified based on it’s performance attributes, procurement and maintenance costs and not by it’s engine if the ultimate goal is to fill the gap with an effective fighter. In my opinion, it is an unfair and weird discrimination policy for defense procurement’s? Let’s take F-16 and F 18 for an example, the procurement cost of F 18, a twin engine jet is slightly more than F-16 but the maintenance cost of F-18 is the least among all Front line fighters in US Forces. Continue reading

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