The Centre for Airborne Systems (CABS) recently issued an RFP for the supply of 1 Mtr Scaled Airbus 319 Sigint Display Model with SS Tripod Stand and Transit Box which for the first time revealed plans of the organization to develop an A319 based COMJAM/SIGINT aircraft for the Indian Air Force (IAF).

IAF had issued RFI for the nine aircraft way back in 2006, later in 2012, and last in 2017 that specified that two of the nine aircraft should be certified to perform the signals intelligence (SIGINT) role, given that the mission package for SIGINT commonly requires permanent modifications to the airframe. The remaining seven aircraft according to the RFI are to be configured by the prime contractor for the multi-mission role, ‘supporting aerial survey, target towing, communications jamming (COMJAM) and flaring’.

Previous RFI issued by the IAF had called for an airborne SIGINT system that should have greater than a 400km range with 360-degree azimuth coverage. The aircraft must be able to operate from airfields as high as 3300m (10,800 feet) above sea level in both roles, and while carrying a minimum of 50 percent fuel load.

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