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Wednesday, September 14, 2011

C-NM5 From CSIR-NAL & Mahindra Aerospace Makes its Maiden Flight


Anonymous said...

its build by gippsaero in australia!!! what is the contribution of NAL? Prasun sahab,can you please tell us what is happening to SARAS at the momemnt. we read that NAL hired MDB ,Russia and another italian company Piaggio to sort out flight control issues..

Anonymous said...

Dear Sir
With Reference to your Previous article I support the IAF

The Navy is just messing up the Situation with its 40 year old TALE

My Question is this

In The Kargil war AND The 2001 02 Year along war like situation
DID the Army have ANY Complaint against IAF such as NON Cooperation

Just because a there is a dispute over a CASEVAC sortie IAF is being called Coward

These Army people are just JEALOUS of IAF

Anonymous said...

There is something called

AUTHORITY without responsibility
and Responsibility without Authority

Army wants Authority over the Helicopters handed to them but for MANY years the responsibility will be that of IAF

IAF has been involved in Selecting the NEW helicopters that will be bought

IAF has the All the maintenance and repair Infrastructure

The training of pilots is IAF's Duty

The MUNITIONS carried by Attack Helos are selected stored and used by the IAF

In all 10 Exercises for validating Cold Start doctrine
IAF fighters and Helicopters have worked together with the Army and therefore is NO NEED for the Army to EXPAND its domain

Army already has enough on its plate

Anonymous said...

The Maritime strike Squadron will be irrelevant of the Jagaur aircraft will be irrelevant once the Mig 29s are fully operational

In future Su 30 mki armed with Brahmos will ALSO be deployed for patrolling the VAST Indian Ocean Region looking out For Chinese Threats

That time will the IN ask that
SU 30 MKI should be TRANSFERRED to IN

And LRMR assets such Tu 142 Dornier and other helicopters will FEED the inputs to the Maritime strike Squadron when ever required

saurav jha said...

Hi Prasun,

Anything new on AVRO replacement ..?
Are Pvt. companies capable enough to handle this on their own..? What could be a good replacement ..?

saurav jha said...

Israel is integrating Trophy and Iron-Fist..

Can we expect this new system ..?

joydeep ghosh said...

@Prasun da

i have really no hope on this, earlier TAAL (Tenaja) showed a lot of promise but now its nowhere near what was ex[ected from it. I think project will also go the same way


Joydeep Ghosh

Anonymous said...

Bang on anon @11:27 pm, about NAL and gippsaero.

However let us not loose sight of the fact of what the private sector has just demonstrated.

That they might be a startup and a greenhorn, but with right acquisitions and strategic partnerships, they can help India leapfrog a generation ahead technologically in pretty quick time.

Game 1 private sector... your serve DPSUs.

Austin said...

As long as they can sell it to Indian Private and Government players and sell it globally its a good aircraft.

NAL contribution would have been in Wind Tunnel Testing and fine tuning the design and generating data for fatigue,materials etc

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Anon@11.17PM: The SARAS is a product built by, for and of the scientists, with hardly any production-engineering inputs. That is why it is overweight, for starters. What was meant to be just a learning curve was subsequently converted into a series-production project—at least on paper. The reality is that unless one develops a world-class product along with risk-sharing international partners that are established manufacturers and designers, things will go awfully wrong. The same goes for the Dhruv ALH. For even today one comes across certain fundamental design flaws in it, like that involving the transmission. All these could have been averted if from the very beginning the decision had been made to obtain FAA or EASA type-certification for this helicopter. Now it is too late to do so, and without such certification, no sane customer would be willing to risk his/her life by flying on board this machine. Similarly, without such type-certification, there’s no hull insurance coverage available and therefore no civilian variant is ever likely to be sold. By the way, here’s what HAL did regarding the Hawk Mk132s: Two years ago, the Indian Air Force blamed BAE Systems for a one-year delay in the assembly of 42 Hawk advanced jet trainers at Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL). BAE released a statement defending itself, but provided no details. Thanks to Julian Assange's latest dump of US State Department cables, BAE's side of the story emerges a bit more clearly. In a 24 February 2010 cable marked "confidential", the US Embassy in New Delhi describe Ambassador Timothy Roemer's tour of HAL's factory complex in Bengalaru, and concludes with this anecdote. The potential for HAL to successfully partner with U.S. firms on a truly advanced aircraft remains untested and suspect. The Hawk program, which involves the assembly of aircraft from kits supplied by BAE, is well behind schedule. BAE has told Embassy staff that the Indian Air Force did not order sufficient spare parts for the first batch of Hawks that were delivered fully assembled from England. BAE technicians supervising work at HAL became aware that parts were being taken from the kits intended to assemble new aircraft and used instead as replacement parts for aircraft already delivered. Lack of controls left BAE unsure what parts were now missing from the kits. When BAE confronted HAL regarding the problem, the BAE technical staff was asked to leave HAL. Clearly, despite the progress evident within the Indian Defense sector, American firms need to approach partnerships carefully to understand the management and technological experience of Indian firms. Cost, schedule and quality will be key challenges for any company engaging in JOINT production ventures.

To Anon@9.40AM: Well, for starters, the IAF could easily have deployed its Searcher Mk1 MALE-UAVs for terrain surveillance (these UAVs were acquired in 1996) in support of 121 Brigade prior to the onset of hostilities. This wasn’t done. Had the Searcher Mk1s been mobilized, the situational awareness would have been much better and one would have known in advance whether or not FIM-92A Stinger or Anza Mk1 MANPADS were deployed on the mountain peaks. This is just one instance of the IAF’s unwillingness to cooperate with the Army. There are several others.

To Anon@9.48AM: Yes, you’re referring to the ground situation today, but the AAC’s expansion plans were approved back in 1987 and the question therefore is: why wasn’t the plan allowed to reach fruition? Lastly, there’s no such thing as a Cold Start Doctrine, there never was. What the Army has is a pro-active strategy for commencing offensive land campaigns at short notice but to convert that strategy into a full-fledged operational war-plan will take at least another six to eight years.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Anon@10AM: The IAF’s No6 Maritime Strike Sqn and Mumbai-based Maritime Air Operations Directorate have been irrelevant since the late 1970s. The Su-30MKI will be armed with the land-attack variant of BrahMos, and not the anti-ship strike variant. And during a war, each armed service will have its own watertight OP-PLAN. No one will share its war plans with the other. There has never been and there isn’t going to be a single integrated operational war plan. That’s the system that exists today. If I were the Chief of the Naval Staff, I would be pretty stupid if I were to ask the IAF to engage in anti-ship strike operations when the Navy itself can do it with the MiG-29Ks. As for Navy LRMR assets feeding inputs to the IAF’s maritime strike aircraft like Jaguar IMs. The situation doesn’t arise at all since the Navy will be exchanging situational awareness data through its LINK-2 encrypted data links amongst only its own assets, and the IAF will not be in the loop since the IAF’s operational data-links are totally non-compatible with LINK-2. That is also the reason why the Navy has and wants its own AEW & C platforms, and does not want to rely on the IAF for AEW & C coverage.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Saurav Jha: The aircraft selection process is still on, and I’m pretty sure the private sector companies will easily be able to master the screwdriver technologies. Regarding Iron Fist, it is already on the Arjun Mk2 MBT prototypes and will also find its way on the Arjun Mk1s.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Joydeep Ghosh & AUSTIN: If the C-NM5 can obtain FAA or EASA type-certification, then it could be sold in large numbers to flying clubs and flying training institutions throughout South Asia. It is all about deriving the optimum sales/marketing packaging formula.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

Watch the Caesar 155mm/52-cal motorised howitzer in action, specially its MRSI capability at:

Anonymous said...

Hi Mr. Prasun,
Great Blog! Keep up...
How come India's cruise missile "BrahMos" has less than 300km range whereas Pakistan's cruise missile Babur has 800km range? If BrahMos is of high-tech, why can't we increase the range? Why can't Russia-India collaboration increase the range of this missile? A range of 300km is just a throw a stone distance in the present scenario. So isn't it stupid to put up BrahMos cruise missiles where Pakistan can easily target these mobile launchers?

Also, I would like to know your opinion on present Turkish Leader. When I talked with some of my Israeli friends about Israel-Turkey relationship, the comments I heard from there very disappointing. It seems, Mr. Erdogan is throwing everything at Israel, but, Israel is not in a position to do anything against it. Couple of the guys pointed out that previously Israel put everything in Turkish nest and now Israel is suffering. Many Turkish guys used visit Israel and moved around freely. I guess some Israeli week points must have handed over to enemies of Israel. I vaguely remember somebody after 9-11 saying that, many military secrets have been passed from US to Israel to Turkey. And then Turkey to Pakistan.

It seems like Turkey learned a lot from Israel-Turkey military relationship and now Turkey is in a position to challenge Israel militarily. Some of the Israeli military high-techs, especially drones, fighter planes and tanks have reached Turkey, and now Turkey is confronting from the position of superiority. Some western articles say that Turkey's position is very superior because, firstly, NATO will need Turkey to set up Hostile Missile Warning System (against Iran) in Turkey. So Turkey is bargaining with NATO that do you want Missile Warning System or a Friend like Israel? Secondly Turkey's economy is in a very stable condition than the most NATO countries. Recently Turkey announced that it can identify Israeli F-16 as hostile.

I personally feel that, this guy Erdogan is going to be a disaster to already fragile Middle East situation. His words and works are inflaming anti-Israeli feeling among the Muslims in the Middle east. He wants to be the Champion of Muslims. Is he planning to divert the internal problems in many Muslim nations to anti-Israeli feeling by starting Israel-Turkey conflict. In a recent interview with some Turkish and Israeli guys in a radio, one guy commented that even an apology from Israel (that's what Turkey wanted) will not stop Erdogan because he has so much hatred towards Israel. Wasn't this a dirty politics from Erdogan to send the "Gaza Freedom Flotilla" to Gaza via Israel (do not know why didn't he try via Egypt Border) when many Muslims are dying because of famine in Somalia? Of course, Israel made a mistake of raiding the ships while those ships were in International water.

So what could be this situation with respect to India? I do not think Erdogan is pro-India. Turkey-Pakistan relationship is so robust under Erdogan's Govt (or even before his Govt came to power) that it is harming India considerably. And his govt snubbed India during an Afghanistan Conference that held in Turkey.

Thank You. Your feedback highly appreciated.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Anon@12.08AM: Many thanks. The BrahMos can go up to 500km, but its range has been capped (by limiting its internal fuel load) at 300km by the Russians, who are abiding by the MTCR regime. But the missile as it is now being built in India can easily accommodate the extra fuel reqd for range extension to 500km should India and Russia agree at a future date to fully exploit the missile’s maximum engagement envelope. As for its existing range, it is more than enough to cover the targets inside Pakistan, given the country’s elongated geography. That’s also the reason why tactical strike aircraft like the SEPECAT Jaguar IS can easily be employed as deep penetration strike aircraft by the IAF against Pakistan.
As for the present-day Turkish PM, yes, I do agree with your assessment about him trying to be the 21st century Messiah for the Palestinians (instead of other much more oppressed followers of the Islamic faith residing in places like China, Pakistan, Somalia, etc). Which, consequently, means that he is not a staunch Islamist as such, but he may be trying—with some substantial degree of financial and diplomatic support from the Saudi Arabia-led Sunni sect—to gain the moral high ground and thereby upstage and marginalise the Iranians, who along with Hezbollah and Hamas have been at the forefront of the anti-Israeli and pro-Palestinian tirade over the past few years. I personally tend to view such slugfests between the various parties contending to be the ‘true’ spokespersons for Palestinian rights as hypocrites, in the sense that they are merely prostituting the Palestinian issue to secure their respective wider global objectives, i.e. who will ultimately triumph over one another—the Sunnis or Shias. As disclosed by Qatar-based Al Jazeera about two years ago (the Palestinian papers expose), the Saudis and Iranians have their rival gameplans, the signatures of which are on display today not only in West Asia, but also in Afghanistan and Central Asia. Therefore, I personally perceive Mr Erdogan as a wily statesman who is only using the Israeli bogey (classic shadow puppetry, or wayang kulit) in pursuance of a wider geo-strategic objective (that of sidelining Iran) and he knows for sure that in securing Turkey’s enlightened national security interests, he cannot even dream of turning his back on the US and Israel.
As for Turkey-Pakistan relations, they have been robust since the 1950s, but Ankara has belatedly realised that the largely secular Pakistan it knew then is totally different from the Pakistan that exists today, despite the existence of secular political parties in Pakistan like the PPP, Awami League and MQM. In my view, India does not view Pakistan-Turkey military relations as worrisome, but India is keenly watching how China makes use of Pakistan’s good offices to build bridges with Turkey, especially in the military-industrial sector. For instance, it is impossible for a country like Turkey to develop a CALCM like the SOM all by itself within a 5-year period, just as Pakistan had to reach out to South Africa in the late 1990s for developing the Ra’ad/Hatf-8 CALCM. And now that we have seen both the Ra’ad and the SOM, can we safely conclude that there’s a distinct R & D linkage between these two CALCMs? And will we see in the very near future Chinese combat aircraft equipped with CALCMs closely resembling the SOM or Ra’ad? Because right now China does not yet possess such CALCMs, which it would love to have for sure, rather than the bulkier CJ-10s that can only be launched from strategic bombers.

Anonymous said...

Prasun and fello bloggers:

How come name of South Africa comes up routinely when it comes to weapon technology. Its not a industrialized nation, large part of its population are under privileged due to apartheid. Still they managed to build up a mature military R&D and manufacturing facilities. How did they do that?

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Anon Above: South Africa used to be the ultimate paradise on Earth for the whites until the independence of Namibia and the abolition of Apartheid. The country throughout the Cold War era was overflowing with diamonds and Krueger Rands and was therefore in a position to buy off any technology it wanted for military-industrialisation purposes. And it did precisely that by buying off whatever it wanted from France, the UK, Spain and Israel. Did you know that the world's first frequency-hopping MILSPEC radio was developed by the South African Division of RACAL? Also, it was the first country to develop with the help of Dr Gerald Bull of Canada and Spain's Santa Barbara company a family of 155mm/45-cal howitzers (the towed G-5 and motorised G-6)--which between 1975 and the mid-1980s had the longest reach among all other 155mm howitzers? Then the South African arms marketing agency ARMSCOR (predecessor of DENEL), through Dr Bull, sold the G-5's design and production rights to China for a fantastic sum mof money, and sold several G-6s to both Iraq and Oman, plus millions to 155mm rounds. Had it not been for these howitzers, Iraq would never have been able to stop the successive Iranian human-wave infantry onslaughts during the Iran-Iraq war. But alas, after the end of Apartheid, most of the White intellectuals, technocrats, scientists and engineers began emigrating to countries like Canada, the UK and Australia at a rate of 800,000 a year. Today, what is left in South Africa are just the below-average Whites that are hardly productive in any manner and when you combine them with a Black populace that is much less evolved, you have the perfect recipe for generating and sustaining a perpetual state of underdevelopment. Welcome to present-day South Africa!!!

Anonymous said...

Dear Sir

Please Answer My Question

It is being said that UAE
Mirage 2000-9 are available because
UAE is buying Rafales

Though they are second hand they are in good quality and are available for 30 million dollars

Do you Think IAF should get them

At least the Mig 27 fleet can be replaced EARLIER if we get these Mirages

Anonymous said...

@Prasun...The mobility of that caesar took my breath away. Imagine the soiling of pants on the other side had our boys got this weapon.

As a non-military/technical person I would like to know

Does the Caesar fire anti-personnel and anti armour rounds?

Can the Arjun fire anti-personnel rounds?. if not should we try to make it do that by making it 'multi role'.

If it already does then what would be the need/role for a weapon like the Caesar.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Anon@5.35PM: Rather than waste money on the UAEAF's Mirage 2000s, far better to spend a fraction of that on re-engining the MiG-27Ms and upgrading thewir avionics suite. The upgraded MiG-27Ms will be able to do a lot more as a tank killer than the Mirage 2000 can.

To Anon@5.55PM: The caesar can fire any type of 155mm round/guided-projectile developed. As far back as November 2001 I myself saw its firepower demonstrations in both Brunei and Malaysia and it could easily hurl rounds 41.6km away with accuracy. The Arjun MBT too can fire APAM rounds developed by IMI but those rounds cannot go as far as those fired from the Caesar.

Om.Shiva said...

T think it's a good step by Mahindra to buy up these ailing Aussie aerospace players. I mean who really buys these Gippsaero planes other than some small time farmers Country Victoria and NSW? Even Royal Flying Doctor Service has dumped them. Even Gippsland is a dying area. Regional Rail Link, they say would help rejuvenate the area but in my opinion, the very notion of Melbourne@5million kills that idea.

Anyway, thru this deal Mahindra acquires the knowhow from Gippsaero and with the financial resources and global reach of Mahindra, they will be able absorb the necessary technology and develop it to become a global aerospace player.

However I really hope it doesn't take quite as much time as it did from the time Mahindra acquired CKD kits from Jeep for licence production to the production of the Scorpio, their first half-decent passenger automobile. That "feat" took some 50+ years!