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The Indian Air Force (IAF) is taking a significant leap towards bolstering its aerial electronic warfare (EW) capabilities with the planned integration of a cutting-edge indigenous suite onto its Su-30MKI fighter jets.

The Centre for Airborne Systems and Displays (CASDIC) has been spearheading the development of this advanced EW suite. The proposed system consists of an internal Radar Warning Receiver (RWR) and a podded jammer system housed in left-hand (LH) and right-hand (RH) ASPJ pods mounted on stations 11 and 12 of the Su-30MKI. This internal-external combination aims to provide comprehensive situational awareness and jamming capabilities against enemy radars, enhancing the survivability and mission effectiveness of the aircraft.

CASDIC, demonstrating commendable initiative, commissioned HAL, Nasik, to conduct a detailed feasibility study for integrating the EW suite onto the Su-30MKI. This crucial step, completed in June 2023, laid the groundwork for further development.

With the feasibility study complete, CASDIC has submitted a formal proposal for the EW suite to Air HQs, initiating the process of acquiring the necessary approval (Acceptance of Necessity – AON) for the project. Simultaneously, CASDIC is pursuing project sanction from DRDO, ensuring comprehensive support for this ambitious endeavour.

The IAF has specified strict deadlines for flight testing activities on the modified Su-30MKI. Recognizing the importance of timeliness, CASDIC proposes to commence detailed design activities for the EW suite installation even before the official project sanction. This proactive approach aims to expedite the process and ensure the timely completion of the project.

The proposed detail design activity will involve RCMA (N) coordinating the drawings and documents required for aircraft modification, as outlined in the feasibility study. HAL will then certify the completion of this task. These coordinated drawings and documents will not be considered deliverables at this stage.

The integration of this indigenous EW suite onto the Su-30MKI marks a significant advancement in the IAF’s electronic warfare capabilities. This initiative not only enhances operational effectiveness but also underscores India’s commitment to self-reliance in the critical domain of defence technology. With the project progressing steadily, the future of IAF’s aerial combat prowess looks brighter than ever.

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