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Old 6th October 2017, 22:44   #226
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Default Re: Combat Aircraft of the Indian Air Force

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Originally Posted by PraNeel View Post
The official LCA Tejas channel has published the interview of Air Cmde Rohit Varma. Under his tenure the hot and cold weather trials of Tejas were carried out. Also the Initial Operational Clearance IOC-1 was achieved under his tenure.
Any idea how many units inducted? Tejas first flew in 2001, it's high time we had them in service by now. I'm keen in getting what really happened in the MMRCA high altitude evaluations too, which planes failed and why, how badly.

On a different note, today 6 October, marks the exactly 40 years since the MiG-29's first flight.
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Old 6th October 2017, 23:13   #227
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Any idea how many units inducted? Tejas first flew in 2001, it's high time we had them in service by now.
Tejas was inducted into service in July 2016. Two jets were inducted in the No 45 squadron of IAF called Flying Daggers. Current strength of the squadron is 4. SP-6 (Series Production 6) will be the fifth member and made it's maiden flight on 30 June from Bengaluru. SP-5 is next in line and is about to make it's maiden flight soon.
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Old 7th October 2017, 00:53   #228
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Originally Posted by PraNeel View Post
Tejas was inducted into service in July 2016. Two jets were inducted in the No 45 squadron of IAF called Flying Daggers. Current strength of the squadron is 4. SP-6 (Series Production 6) will be the fifth member and made it's maiden flight on 30 June from Bengaluru. SP-5 is next in line and is about to make it's maiden flight soon.

So, are these planes fully operational or are they still under certain restrictions

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Old 7th October 2017, 02:58   #229
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So, are these planes fully operational or are they still under certain restrictions

Jeroen
The squadron will be based in Sulur, Tamil Nadu, however till it is fully operational it will be based in Bengaluru. This is done so that the squadron is closer to manufacturer and all concerns are addressed quickly. Please don't mistake it for development.
Tejas has taken part in Iron Fist exercise held in Rajasthan last year, where it fired missiles. It also flew during the republic day parade this year.
Current Tejas Series Production is based on IOC-2.

For FOC (Final Operational Clearance) three things are required:
  1. Firing of guided missile(BVRAAM) in its guided mode. (Done)
  2. In flight refueling. (IFR probe integration Done)
  3. Gun firing while in flight. (Almost Completed)
So Tejas is very close to achieve FOC and once the current Series Production of 20 jets is completed, HAL will move towards Series Production of FOC spec Tejas.
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Old 4th November 2017, 10:52   #230
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In a big boost to defence, India successfully tests glide bomb
https://economictimes.indiatimes.com...w/61500026.cms

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“The guided bomb released from the aircraft and guided through precision navigation system, reached the targets at greater than 70 km range, with high accuracies,” the defence ministry said in a statement. The ‘smart anti-airfield weapon’ (SAAW), developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation’s Research Centre Imarat (RCI), other labs and the Indian Air Force, was fired from an air force aircraft. SAAW has been described as a 120 kg smart weapon, which is capable of engaging targets with high precision up to a range of 100 km. The long-range will allow the IAF to easily hit targets across the border without putting the pilot and aircraft at risk
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Old 5th November 2017, 00:33   #231
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Originally Posted by PraNeel View Post
The official LCA Tejas channel has published the interview of Air Cmde Rohit Varma.
Here is the second part of the interview. This part is more focused on the life of a fighter pilot in IAF.



As a continuation of the series the next interview is of Air commodore Harish Nayani. He was the test pilot of PV-3 (prototype vehicle) which had the same interface which is present in current Tejas in service. He was also in-charge of Mig-21 Bison upgrade program. He also flew the erstwhile defense minister George Fernandes in Mig-21 trainer.

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Old 7th November 2017, 15:40   #232
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Default Re: Combat Aircraft of the Indian Air Force

Here is a two part series that gives insights into how LCA Tejas is built and assembled at HAL.



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Old 20th November 2017, 22:37   #233
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https://www.livefistdefence.com/2017...rithmetic.html

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A lack of focus and priority has been the bane of the Tejas project in recent years rather than technical shortcomings in the aircraft or technological hurdles. HAL’s somewhat lackadaisical approach to the production of Tejas Mk.1 has to end and partnership with ADA and the IAF intensified.
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The selection of the Rafale should stand and, subject to the price and technology transfer package being satisfactory, the induction of additional Rafale aircraft beyond the existing 36 should be considered as a priority. A separate twin-engine project, unless there are severe problems with the Rafale, is a time-consuming luxury with little benefit to India.
Interesting piece that highlights something that seems to pass under the radar with the IAF, the problems that arise from having many multiple platforms. While the US sought to possibly negate this by having the JSF replace multiple individual platforms, it has become a cautionary tale of the dangers of shoe-horning disparate requirements into a single platform. That being said India certainly needs to decide and have a more unified vision, a long term plan of how they wish to proceed going forward for the next 2 decades at least, with as little disruption as possible from the political end if this can be achieved.
What's especially worrying is the totally broad spectrum of noises you hear about the Tejas, one would imagine that by now there would be some consensus on such a long in the tooth platform but it appears far from that, naturally as a consequence of all the vested interests. I don't think I've yet come across what as near-as-can-be, a dispassionate appraisal of the Tejas in terms of IAF needs.

Last edited by ads11 : 20th November 2017 at 22:54. Reason: Enter a few quotes in lieu of TL:DR readers who need more of an executive summary
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Old 22nd November 2017, 15:35   #234
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Brahmos Cruise Missile fired From Su-30MKI for the first time
https://www.ndtv.com/india-news/brah...khoi-3-1778629

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BrahMos, the world's fastest supersonic cruise missile, has been successfully tested for the first time from a Sukhoi-30MKI fighter of the Indian Air Force (IAF), the defence ministry confirmed today.

As the anti-ship missile was gravity-dropped from the Sukhoi-30MKI or Su-30 from fuselage, the two-stage missile's engine fired up and propelled towards the intended target at the sea in Bay of Bengal, said a statement.
But do check out 'click bait' style headline by NDTV

Video of Brahmos launch:


Last edited by Gannu_1 : 22nd November 2017 at 20:16. Reason: Merged as requested.
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Old 29th November 2017, 01:08   #235
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Recently there were many articles claiming that IAF is not interested in future advanced versions of Tejas and they are batting strongly for foreign single engined fighter jets. These articles even gave figures pertaining to range, weapons load, maintenance and futher claimed that IAF accepted Tejas to oblidge the sentiments of nation. Link 1 Link 2
While I don't know how much of this is true w.r.t. IAF giving a cold shoulder to Tejas, a little digging shows the facts mentioned in these articles are not presented in a fair manner. Link (Please focus on facts and figures and not the way article is written)
Admist all this HAL chairman says that Tejas is a world class fighter jet and plays the defined role. He also mentioned that they are planning to ramp up the production rate to 24 by 2021 and can be taken up further with private partnership. Link
Also the defense minsitry is skeptical with the idea of single engined requirement as it might lead to a single vendor situation and has asked the force to base their requirements of technical parameters.

All of the above withstanding:
  1. IAF is planning to equip Tejas with lighter version of Brahmos called "Brahmos Light". The new version of the Brahmos will have a smaller engine. The warhead will be about the same but the weight of the missile will be considerably less. The lighter missile's range will be about the same: 300 km. The missile is likely to be ready by 2019.
  2. Singapore Defence Minister flew in Tejas and was all praise for it. He said it was so smooth that even during high G maneouvres he was able to take a selfie.
Quote:

"For 45 minutes, I placed my life in the hands of Air Vice Marshal AP Singh as we flew 20,000ft above the Kalaikunda skies in the IAF’s new fighter plane – Tejas. I have never met him before but my RSAF pilots who have trained regularly with IAF pilots say he is among the best, so it was an easy decision. In fact, the plane ride was so smooth despite the G-turns and manoeuvres that I managed to even take some selfies!"
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Combat Aircraft of the Indian Air Force-24058676_1567861013307152_5949114826002526566_n.jpg

Combat Aircraft of the Indian Air Force-23926421_1567861046640482_7990164961772163093_o.jpg

Combat Aircraft of the Indian Air Force-24068188_1567887556637831_293789803351670812_n.jpg

And at last here is a video of the currently operational suqadron of Tejas, the "Flying Daggers". And boy they are all praise for Tejas.



IMO Tejas is a wonderful product and like always there are efforts to downplay indegenous tech by lobbies with commercial interests. Tejas is a wonderful platform and it's development should be carried forward with support from IAF.

Last edited by PraNeel : 29th November 2017 at 01:13.
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Old 29th November 2017, 17:05   #236
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Default Re: Combat Aircraft of the Indian Air Force

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Originally Posted by PraNeel View Post
All of the above withstanding:
  1. IAF is planning to equip Tejas with lighter version of Brahmos called "Brahmos Light". The new version of the Brahmos will have a smaller engine. The warhead will be about the same but the weight of the missile will be considerably less. The lighter missile's range will be about the same: 300 km. The missile is likely to be ready by 2019.
  2. Singapore Defence Minister flew in Tejas and was all praise for it. He said it was so smooth that even during high G maneouvres he was able to take a selfie.
Attachment 1700585
I'd urge a word of caution. If there was any plan for Brahmos Light, it would make much more sense for immediate use on a platform rated to take the full fat version of the missile such as the Su-30MKI. A lighter version of the missile would be more useful for this platform as it would allow it to possibly have a greater combat load, perhaps carry an AAM or just even more fuel to increase on station time.

I wouldn't put much stock in the defence minister's statement. Having had a brief look into his background, it seems he's just a technocrat, and his statement is precisely the sort of platitude you expect from a public servant, aimed to get through to even the lowest common denominator.

As I've stated before, there seems to be no clear consensus on the Tejas and while taken on it's own this wouldn't be altogether problematic (for comparison look at the intense brouhaha the JSF still causes), you would have hoped to see some redeeming features come through (again, in the JSF example, there is no denying the leap forward it brings just looking at the enhanced situational awareness it can offer through its sensor suite). It's terribly disconcerting there doesn't seem to be any such standout feature for the Tejas than rather cruelly it seems the fact that it is domestically built.

On the topic of its production, without orders and dilly dallying, I can understand the reticence on HAL's part to not ramp up production but I feel like it's a vicious cycle. if HAL Did suddenly start churning out the jets en masse to complete its standing order in double quick time, maybe then it would force the hand of the IAF, at least from pressure by the govt as they will have demonstrable proof to show their constituents that it Is possible to fix the squadron shortfall using a Made in India platform. Quantitatively at least.. (I don't imagine this would go towards rectifying the qualitative shortfalls of the Tejas).
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Old 29th November 2017, 23:16   #237
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I'd urge a word of caution. If there was any plan for Brahmos Light, it would make much more sense for immediate use on a platform rated to take the full fat version of the missile such as the Su-30MKI.
Brahmos light is being developed because currently Su-30 can carry only 1 Brahmos missile, which has been specifically developed for it and is lighter than the conventional Brahmos missile.
With Brahmos light, Su-30 MKI can carry three of them. Tejas will just benefit from this development, however it shows the versatility of the platform.

Quote:
I wouldn't put much stock in the defence minister's statement. Having had a brief look into his background, it seems he's just a technocrat, and his statement is precisely the sort of platitude you expect from a public servant, aimed to get through to even the lowest common denominator.
He has clearly mentioned that a technical evaluation is required before considering Tejas for their country. We should be happy about the praise for our pilot and machine.

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As I've stated before, there seems to be no clear consensus on the Tejas
.... It's terribly disconcerting there doesn't seem to be any such standout feature for the Tejas than rather cruelly it seems the fact that it is domestically built.
IMO it's all about what the IAF wants. And going by history IAF has always maintained a mix of various makes, and they want to continue so. Comparing Tejas with JSF is not a proper comparison. The plane complies with the design requirements and Mark 1 version will have electronic warfare suite, IFR, AESA radar, guided BVRAM and gun. IAF is one of the top air force in world and it is no small feat to develop a fighter jet from scratch according to custom requirements.
General Dynamics has clearly denied TOT of critical technologies even if F-16 is produced in India. Link So, it is very clear that such technologies have to be developed in home and for that domestic production and support from IAF is required.

Quote:
On the topic of its production, without orders and dilly dallying, I can understand the reticence on HAL's part to not ramp up production ... I don't imagine this would go towards rectifying the qualitative shortfalls of the Tejas
The point of importance is the procedure and approvals required for development, production and induction. In a recent interview HAL chairman has highlighted them. Link

Quote:
As far as the FOC order is concerned, mid-2018 is when FOC is expected to come but we are asking the customer (IAF) to allow us to cut the material. Because if we start now, the aircraft will come after three years. By then, this AON of 83 LCA will be converted into a contract between the IAF and HAL.

The aircraft are flying and the operational capacity enhancement requires a thorough verification. It is a developmental work and we are planning to fly 60 sorties a month. Now between IAF, ADA and HAL, we are ensuring that these many sorties happen.
While the promises are for getting the FOC by mid-2018, we will definitely get it by December 2018. We should then be able to supply these 20 FOC by 2022. And then on to the next 83… If capacities are put on depending on the configuration clearance, the numbers can be rolled out. This is not like an automobile that today you give me a number and automatically I will give you the aircraft immediately. There is a lag, we require all the material to be procured and we need to make 10,000 odd components and put them together, and some components need to be bought from outside.
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Old 30th November 2017, 03:25   #238
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Originally Posted by PraNeel View Post


IMO it's all about what the IAF wants. And going by history IAF has always maintained a mix of various makes, and they want to continue so. Comparing Tejas with JSF is not a proper comparison.


The point of importance is the procedure and approvals required for development, production and induction. In a recent interview HAL chairman has highlighted them. Link
I think I should've been a bit more specific about why I compared the Tejas to the JSF and rather unwittingly you've touched upon it in your final excerpt, especially the bit in bold about the lag time with defence kit compared to say a car. What is being implicitly touched upon is the biggest boondoggle that's plagued the US military in all its arms and has now metastasized into other programmes. What I speak of is the myth that is CONCURRENCY. If you look at what HAL is saying, they're practically using the same concurrency spiel that Lockheed has been hiding behind with the JSF, or to use another example the USN with the catastrophic Littoral Combat Ship programme and now the Ford class of supercarrier.

Concurrency is this misplaced belief that development times could've been sped along if production was initiated with development continuing alongside, in the belief that end user feedback would feed into subsequent tranches. Sound familiar? Mark 1A and Mk2 Tejas you say? Hmm. Well, as the world has seen with the many Blocks of the JSF churned out, you've only just got pilots being able to just about use the funky helmet that was designed as being an extension of the jet itself, not to mention that you'll end up having older block jets that then have to brought up to the later standard. Nah-uh.

I think if I had to distill my gripes it could be boiled down simply to HAL equivocating; the ever changing requirements from end user that just snowball with the manufacturer lagging to keep behind and more than anything trying to solve everything in one go. I understand the need for localised production, to build a self sufficient domestic industry, and I totally get the Pokhran sanctions that handicapped the process but maybe the IAF could have taken a leaf out the IN book in the excellent job they've done with their domestic shipbuilding. If I'm right in summarising V.Narayan's writings here on it, it seems they took a platform they understood, and just iterated on it over decades, working on a new component of the whole platform with every new generation as opposed to trying to build everything from scratch on their own, every time. And more than that, the IN has its own design bureau, so at least comparatively there's a clarity of purpose in what is wanted. With the IAF and HAL+ADA it just seems they're both on different wavelengths.

Honestly, I think we're all in agreement we want to see it do well, or at the very least the learnings from this long gestating project come to fruition soon, whether in the form of a Tejas or maybe a different platform.
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Old 30th November 2017, 09:56   #239
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I think I should've been a bit more specific about why I compared the Tejas to the JSF and rather unwittingly you've touched upon it in your final excerpt, especially the bit in bold about the lag time with defence kit compared to say a car.

Concurrency is this misplaced belief that development times could've been sped along if production was initiated with development continuing alongside, in the belief that end user feedback would feed into subsequent tranches. Sound familiar? Mark 1A and Mk2 Tejas you say? Hmm. Well, as the world has seen with the many Blocks of the JSF churned out, you've only just got pilots being able to just about use the funky helmet that was designed as being an extension of the jet itself, not to mention that you'll end up having older block jets that then have to brought up to the later standard. Nah-uh.
In your post you have missed the main point. HAL chief is not stressing upon production along with development. Tejas air frame is made mostly out of composite materials and the air frame is finalized. Hence he is pointing out that if they get the permission to cut the material they can start producing the air frame. And this process takes time. Whatever components are required can be integrated as and when the FOC comes. The only structural changes required were for IFR probe and that has been already done.
And this is in tandem with fighter jet production worldwide. Rafale will be delivered 3 years after the deal was signed. Today when every child in the country knows that IAF is battling dwindling squadron numbers, any attempts to speed up production should be complied with.
Secondly, HAL chief has already mentioned that whatever improvements will be there in FOC spec Tejas, same can be incorporated in IOC batch of Tejas by entering into an formal agreement.

Quote:
The ever changing requirements from end user that just snowball with the manufacturer lagging to keep behind and more than anything trying to solve everything in one go ....maybe the IAF could have taken a leaf out the IN book in the excellent job they've done with their domestic shipbuilding. .....working on a new component of the whole platform with every new generation as opposed to trying to build everything from scratch on their own, every time. And more than that, the IN has its own design bureau, so at least comparatively there's a clarity of purpose in what is wanted. With the IAF and HAL+ADA it just seems they're both on different wavelengths.
IN did the right thing by not losing the capability gained and they chose the right path to become the integrator rather than produce everything. However, one must note Fighter jet technology evolves at a much rapid pace. Today US is already progressing towards 6 gen fighter tech while we are still struggling with Russia for 5 gen tech. It was right step to form ADA for technical research and development and limit HAL to production, otherwise Tejas wouldn't have seen the light of day. AMCA project will not be a reality until and unless we have the 5 gen tech available in country. And going by Russia's and US reluctance for TOT, developing them in house is the only way that seems plausible.

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Honestly, I think we're all in agreement we want to see it do well, or at the very least the learnings from this long gestating project come to fruition soon, whether in the form of a Tejas or maybe a different platform.
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Old 14th January 2018, 18:56   #240
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India to Arm 40 Su-30 Fighter Jets With BrahMos Cruise Missile By 2020

https://thediplomat.com/2017/12/indi...ssile-by-2020/


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India has kicked off the process of integrating the air-launched BrahMos-A supersonic cruise missile on 40 Sukhoi Su-30 MKI multirole air superiority fighter jets, according to local media reports.

The retrofitting of the aircraft is expected to be completed by 2020, Indian Air Force (IAF) sources revealed. “It is a very important project considering IAF’s evolving requirement to boost air power when the possibility of a two-front war cannot be ruled out,” an Indian government official said.

Up until now, only two IAF Su-30 MKI fighters have been converted to fire the new 2.5-ton supersonic air-to-surface cruise missile. Due to the size and weight of the BrahMos-A, each Su-30 MKI can only carry one missile in a transport launch canister.

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The IAF test fired a BrahMos-A from a Su-30 MKI in November successfully destroying a naval target. The IAF has conducted several tests of the BrahMos-A in 2016 and 2017.

Modifications in order for the Su-30 MKI to carry and launch the BrahMos-A include reinforcing the aircraft’s undercarriage in addition to various mechanical, electrical and software upgrades.

“One of the major challenges overcome by scientists of RCI [Research Center Imarat], DRDO [Defense Research Development Organization] in the missile development was optimization of transfer alignment of the inertial sensors of the missile,” an Indian Ministry of Defense (MoD) press release noted in November. Transfer alignment is a complex process that includes initializing and calibrating a missile’s inertial navigation system by using data from the aircraft’s onboard navigation system to maximize the missile’s accuracy.

The BrahMos, a joint venture between India’s Defense Research Development Organization and Russian rocket design bureau NPO Mashinostroyeniya, “operates on a so-called fire and forget principle and can be dropped from 500 to 14,000 meters (1,640 to 46,000 feet),” I explained elsewhere. “The missile’s terminal altitude is as low as ten meters. (The ship-launched anti-ship version of the BrahMos can fly 3-4 meters above the sea to avoid detection.) The BrahMos is capable of traveling at speeds of up to Mach 3.0, making it one of the world’s fastest cruise missiles.”

Furthermore, as I explained in November:

There is also speculation that the BrahMos-A can be modified into a nuclear-capable missile. For its future role as the air component of India’s nuclear triad, the Su-30MKIs would need to be retrofitted with hardened electronic circuitry to withstand the electromagnetic pulses of a nuclear blast.

A total of 50 Su-30MKI aircraft are expected to be upgraded by the early 2020s. “In total, the IAF is expected to receive 200 air-launched BrahMos-As in the coming years, with first deliveries likely to commence in January 2018,” I reported previously.

Author Franz Stefan Gady writing for Diplomat
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