Total Pageviews

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Users Insist On Radical Makeover For Tejas Mk2

Vendor selection by the Bengaluru-based Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA) in consultation with the Indian Air Force (IAF) for supplying various critical sub-systems of imported origin for the Tejas Mk2 multi-role combat aircraft (MRCA), which has been delayed by almost one-and-a-half years, is now expected to be concluded by next March. By then, the IAF would recommend the foreign vendor for supplying the integrated fire-control system (including an infra-red search-and-track sensor, or IRST, integrated with an AESA-based multi-mode radar, or MMR), and a frameless canopy actuation system. 
The IAF’s favourite choice is believed to be the Vixen850E AESA-based MMR integrated with the 55kg Skyward nose-mounted IRST, both of which have been developed by the UK-based Selex Galileo subsidiary of the Italy-based Finmeccanica Group, and is being promoted in India by Data Patterns Pvt Ltd. The Vixen 850e features an innovative roll-repositionable AESA antenna to provide a full +/-100-degree field-of-regard, which allows the aircraft to turn away after a BVRAAM launch, whilst still maintaining data-linking with the BVRAAM. Choice of the optimum combination of air combat missiles (both within-visual-range and beyond-visual-range) will be totally dependent on which fire-control system is finally selected, with the principal contenders being Raytheon and MBDA (AIM-132 ASRAAM/AIM-120C AMRAAM), RAFAEL of Israel (Python-5/Derby), MBDA (MICA family) and Russia’s Vympel JSC (RVV-MD/RVV-SD combination), which IAI/ELTA Systems will likely propose in case the Python-5/Derby solution is rejected by the IAF.
The principal lightweight PGM destined for the Tejas Mk2 (as well as for the Rafale M-MRCA and Mirage 2000UPG) is likely to be the AASM Hammer modular air-to-ground weapon built by France’s SAGEM Défense Sécurité. France’s defence procurement agency DGA on May 31 successfully carried out the first qualification test-firing of the laser terminal guidance version of the Hammer at the Cazaux air base from a Rafale M-MRCA. The target, a bridge pier located more than 50km from the release point, was illuminated by an airborne illuminator that was activated during the last few seconds of the PGM’s flight. The AASM Hammer’s guidance was deliberately initialised by offsetting the target’s GPS coordinates by over 50 metres. Thanks to its navigation, laser spot detection and terminal guidance algorithms, the AASM hit its target to within a metre. Prior to the impact, the PGM steered itself to a glide slope of 20 degrees, preferred for this type of operational scenario. The AASM Hammer is a family of air-to-ground PGMs comprising guidance and range augmentation kits attached to standard bombs. The GPS/inertial/laser guidance version, designated SBU-64 Hammer, joins the AASM range which already includes two other versions qualified for deployment by the Rafale: GPS/inertial and GPS/inertial/infra-red versions. The SBU-64 features a semi-active laser seeker in place of the infra-red imager, plus dedicated algorithms that are activated during the terminal phase. This version of the AASM can be used to attack moving targets.
Both the IAF and Indian Navy have also recommended that the projected cockpit of the Tejas Mk2 should offer a range of new and enhanced features such as a centric, modular concept of operation, enabling pilots to control and personalise the displays, applications and information sources. The IAF is believed to have zeroed in earlier this year on the CockpitNG option, which was originally developed by ELBIT Systems for the global F-16 upgrade market, and can be easily sourced from HALBIT Avionics Pvt Ltd, the joint venture between ELBIT Systems and the MoD-owned Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL). For the CockpitNG, an advanced display fusion engine has been developed, allowing information to be fused in multiple layers, yet displayed in one place. The new capabilities provide pilots with enhanced situational awareness and mission management, reduce pilot workload and support successful achievement of mission goals in all weather conditions. The CockpitNG, which is being shown for the very first time at the Farnborough International Airshow (FIA-2012), comprises a large area panoramic display (LAD), a low-profile head-up display (LPHUD) and the Targo helmet-mounted display/cueing system. New applications are projected on all elements of the CockpitNG, displaying all relevant data while hiding the irrelevant information to prevent overload. The LAD touch-screen offers a unique concept of operation, enabling pilots to personalise their displays, applications and information with a sweep of the finger, according to specific mission requirements. The cutting-edge 3-D map concept of operation, centered in large size, projects a 3-D image of the world, viewing fused information from own-ship sensors and data-link members’ sensors. The projection of fused synthetic and real-time pictures, videos, sensors and information makes any mission possible and supports successful achievement of enhanced mission goals in all weather conditions.
The 22-inch LAD with HD resolution, is a new-generation avionics display system designed to replace all conventional flight instruments and AMLCD screens, thus creating a full glass-cockpit. The display combines sensor fusion with a decision support system, in order to present all relevant information in a format that facilitates the pilot's missions. The LPHUD is designed as a combined solution for cockpits containing a large-area display due to its streamlined size and shape that requires less space than typical HUD designs. Providing sizeable enhancements for resolution, brightness, accuracy, reliability and maintainability compared to current-generation HUDs, the LPHUD employs digital display technology (LCD-raster display) and provides capability for video processing and image display functions, digital video interfaces, analogue deflection interfaces and sensor display fusion growth provisions. The TARGO HMD will deliver all mission-critical avionics and advanced applications directly to the helmet. Augmented reality will; be achieved by a combination of real-time videos and synthetic data projected on the visor, thereby enhancing pilot situational awareness and increasing operational success rates. When installed on board the Tejas Mk2, the CockpitNG along with its LAD and LPHUD, plus the OSAMC and the processor-cum management LRU will collectively offer significant weight-savings and at the same time make available additional internal volume for accommodating additionally mandated avionics like the IRST sensor, and the open-architecture and integrated defensive avionics suite, or IDAS.
What has already been confirmed thus far is that the two-way airborne operational data-links (ODL) will be supplied by HAL, which, among other systems, will also be supplying the OSAMC mission computer (to cater to the increased processing requirements of the new fire-control system, stores management functions, and a new-design glass-cockpit), the RAM-1701AS radio altimeter, TACAN-2901AJ and DME-2950A tactical air navigation system combined with the ANS-1100A VOL/ILS marker, CIT-4000A Mk12 IFF transponder, COM-1150A UHF standby comms radio, UHF SATCOM transceiver, and the SDR-2010 SoftNET four-channel software-defined radio (working in VHF/UHF and L-band for voice and data communications), and the Bheem-EU brake control/engine/electrical monitoring system, all of which have been developed in-house by the Hyderabad-based Strategic Electronics R & D Centre of HAL. SAGEM Défense Sécurité will supply the Sigma-95N ring laser gyro-based inertial navigation system coupled to a GPS receiver (which is also on board the Su-30MKI and Tejas Mk1). The IDAS, which has been under joint development by the DRDO’s Bengaluru-based Defence Avionics Research Establishment (DARE) and Germany-based Cassidian since 2006, will include the multi-spectral AAR-60(V)2 MILDS-F missile approach warning system, the Tarang Mk3 radar warning receiver (built by Bharat Electronics Ltd), the open-architecture EW processor-cum management LRU, countermeasures dispenser built by Bharat Dynamics Ltd, and Elettronica of Italy’s Virgilius suite that makes use of ELT-568 directional jammers (now being installed on the IAF’s MiG-29UPGs), which make use of active phased-array transmitters for jamming hostile low-band (E-G) and high-band (G-J) emitters. The redesigned digital flight-control computer will be built by BEL.
For tactical strike missions, the Tejas Mk2 will be equipped with the Litening-3 LDP, supplied by RAFAEL Advanced Defence Systems of Israel. The actuated retractable aerial refuelling probe, mounted on the Tejas Mk2’s starboard cockpit section, will be supplied by UK-based Cobham Mission Equipment. The same vendor will also supply the pneumatic air-to-ground stores ejection systems like release units, practice bomb carriers, multiple stores carriers, AGML-3 triple-rail launchers, and high-velocity ejection launchers, almost all of which are already operational on the IAF’s fleet of BAE Systems Hawk Mk132 lead-in fighter trainers. Cobham will thus join a growing list of foreign vendors associated with both the Tejas Mk1 and Mk2, which include Intertechnique SA, SAFRAN Group’s SAGEM Défense Sécurité subsidiary and IN-LHC ZODIAC of France; US-based GE Aero Engines, Hamilton Sunstrand, EATON Aerospace, MOOG, and Goodrich Aerospace; UK-based CHELTON Avionics, Penny + Giles, and Martin Baker (supplier of Mk 16LG zero-zero ejection seats); Italy’s Secondo Mona; and Germany’s Cassidian and Faure Herman. Indian companies involved include HAL, TAML, Data Patterns Pvt Ltd, Government Tool Room and Training Centre (GT & TC), and SLN Technologies Pvt Ltd.
The Tejas Mk2 will have a length of 0.7 metres more than that of the Tejas Mk1 for incorporating a stretched nose section and a modified fuselage section aft of the cockpit for housing an expanded complement of mission avionics LRUs), height of 4.6 metres (as opposed to 4.4 metres of the Tejas Mk1) to accommodate an enlarged vertical tail-section, and a wingspan of 8.2 metres—same as that of the Tejas Mk1—that, however, will feature an increased wing area. External stores capacity will be boosted to 5,000kg (as opposed to 3,500kg for the Tejas Mk1), while the twin internal air-intake ducts will be enlarged to cater to the increased airflow requirements of the 98kN thrust F414-GE-INS6 turbofan built by GE Aero Engines. India’s Ministry of Defence has sanctioned US$542.44 million (Rs2,431.55-crore) for ADA to develop the IAF’s Tejas Mk2 variant and the Indian Navy’s LCA Mk2 (Navy) variant so that the first Tejas Mk2 prototype can roll out by September 2013 and fly by December 2014, following which HAL would begin series-producing the MRCA by 2016. While the IAF is committed to procuring an initial 83 Tejas Mk2s, the Navy has expressed its firm requirement for 46 LCA Mk2 (Navy).

Just like the Tejas Mk1, the airframe of the Tejas Mk2 will incorporate 13 major composites-built structures fabricated by TATA Advanced Materials Ltd (TAML), which was awarded the contract after the state-owned National Aerospace Laboratory (NAL) expressed its failure to deliver the structures on time. Structures to be produced by TAML for each aircraft will include a rudder assembly, fin assembly, 60 carbon-fibre reinforced (CFC) wing spars, 38 wing fuselage fairing skins, 20 wing fuselage fairing blocks, 41 CFC centre fuselage components, two forward undercarriage doors and two aft undercarriage doors.

140 comments:

Rahul said...

After seeing this list i wonder how much time will it take to get these systems delivered, tested and certified? Won't it be better idea to get the MK-2 with adequately-radically modified airframe, new engine and entire range of weapons ASAP? Can't these improvements like 'CockpitNG' wait for latter batches of MK-2 (or call it MK-3)? Isn't it the usual style followed worldwide? Why is that when it comes to indigenous stuffs, IAF demands 'basket' with each and every species of fruit all at once all by day one?

I am actually terrified to know that MK-2 has been delayed by a year and half because IAF wants a frame-less canopy (which is neither present on any of its fighter, nor is coming up with new ones)and almost F-35 styled cockpit .

Anonymous said...

Is frameless canopy same as bubble canopy present in F-22 and J-20?

Anonymous said...

Sir,
what is the RCS of MK2.
What is the range of MK2 with full load?
Can the MK2 be detected and intercepted by the developing J-20 of china?
please post comparison between these planes.

thanks

rad said...

fantastic info prasun ,but i realy wonder how long it will take to flight test and certify so many new systems? 2020 AT LEAST??

Rad

bradshaw said...

Hi Prasun,

This is NUTS !! It looks like the HAL is assembling a plane by sourcing all its parts and equipments from worldwide. The Engine is American, Radar is Vixen or ELTA supplied, displays are Israeli , IRST will be sourced , primary BVR ( i am suprised why u not listed ASTRA ?? ) .... What we are upto making ??

Going by this i have two questions,

1.Is IAF intentionally asking for too much because they know the potential of HAL/DRDO and this would again gave them a chance to issue another RFI fof MRCA no.2 since its clear that HAL cannot fulfill there high wishlist. They can't even make a IJT sitara in 5 years ...lolzz

2. Just compare the gripen with IAF's wishlist.
a. Gripen has Vixen AESA
b. It has the GE F414 high performance engine,the cjoice of IAF.
c. Makes use of AIM - 120 BVR
d. Requires very less maintainance and has open source architectute.
Plus SAAB is ready for 100% TOT , now why not to go for license production of gripen. Why to waste so much on LCA when the end product will be totally imported and will take years to come and a similar proven product with all IAF wishlists is available at a cheaper cost and in ready to fly condition ??

aswin said...

is there any chance for indian air force to convince us to get Elta EM-2052 AESA Radar
or is the Vixen850E AESA-based MMR better for iaf than elta

Anonymous said...

Is Israel working on some new aesa radar because Elta EM-2052 AESA Radar will definitely face more competition now ?

Is there any chance IAF will go for American AESA radars ?

India will start work on AMCA in the next few years, why don't they use tejas mk2 as test bed ? I mean it could be used to test for internal weapon bay and sepentine shaped air ducts...

Why is IAF taking so long ? I mean even if they select the vendors in May, its not like that the deal will be signed next week itself. It will take atleast a year to sign the deal and then a year when the deliveries will start. I don't see these equipments to come to India before 2014 and after the delivery is recieved then it will take atleast 3-4 years for fully operational Tejas mk2 adn a year to incorporate all these weapons on it.
In short i don't think tejas mk2 will enter service before 2018-2019.

Is the work on airframe already started ? If they wanna meet their deadline they should start working on the airframe, put the engine and when the other parts arrives they can start putting them.

Are we gonna see conformal fuel tanks in tejas mk2 ?

Looks like tejas mk2 will be close to latest F16 minus the conformal fuel tanks.

Any updates on Super Su30 program ?

Also is the picture of Nibhay cruise missile shown to public yet ? Why so secrecy ? Is this missile just the tip of the iceberg, i mean are we going to see a series of Nirbhay missiles after this and thats why they are keeping it quite ? I mean what its just a subsonic cruise missile and that too of 1000km range (intermediate). Why are they dubbing it into such a big deal that DRDO considers it to be more important than SLBM, ICBM, BMD or MIRV technology while latter techs are with only a very few countries, the sub-sonic cruise missile is being developed by more than dozen countries.

WHy isn't India developing its series of air-air, air-ground weapons ? We are spending billions on such weapons and its also not good to be dependent on other countries for such weapons if we wanna keep our air-force free from any embargoes. We have built LGB, BVR and cruise missiles, not to mention anti-radiation missile is also going to follow them but the thing is none of these projects have seen induction yet. India started working on BVR but hasn't built a short range air-air missile . Why ? Why can't we do reverse engineering ?

What is this new about DRDO-Army joint efforst on new gen artillery ?

I heard Russia has increased the cost of t90 3 folds. Is it true ? If yes then why don't we go for Leopard. I mean if a t90 gets a direct hit from the latest rounds, it will be blown into pieces while atleast Leopard will save the life of the soldiers inside. I know APS will protect them but still if these MBT gets a direct hit then what ?

Can we expect navy helicopter deal to be signed this year ?

Is India going solo on AESA project ? Whats going on Kaveri JV with Snecma ? Why don't we go with Eurojet or GE ?

Anonymous said...

P17a design, is it ready ?

Work on SSN will start after 2020 ?

Thanx for such a nice article...

Vikram Guha said...

Dear Prasun,

The Indian Navy's Mig 29 uses a Slotted Array Radar . How is a Slotted Array Radar different from a PESA radar ?

Many Thanks,

Vikram

Indian said...

Prasun Da,

Would you be surprised if IAF selects US AESA Radars like SABR or RACR.These are specially designed for F-16 upgrades..beyond APG-80 (Current version of F-16's make shift AESA sold with Blk-52+)..It is understood that SABR and RACR are the TRUE AESA radars for F-16 i.e. utilizes the full capability,that AESA technology provides (Like 1.Agile Beam and 2.To some extent LPI capability while used with DRFM technology)...seems it took some time for the developing companies in US ..but now they are ready to offer.
(Looks IAF was waiting for these US radars to be offered..hence the delay in selecting and finalizing subsystems for Tejas Mk2 ?

Do you think Vixen-850E has these capabilities like Agile Beam ,LPI with DRFM etc?

How about Rafale's RBE-2AESA compared to these US and Saab Radar?

F said...

Prasun,

Thanks for pointing out that that no internal jammer has enough power-generation capacity to be used against target illuminators of ground-based SAMs like MR-SAMs & LR-SAMs. I had no idea. So are they used only against the seeker heads of SARH AAMs or also against airborne radars?

Are the DECM [SAP51M] active jammer and the Sanders AN/ALQ-126B jammer - that are on the Su-30MKM/MKI and Hornet 'D' - internally or pod mounted?

If armed with the Kh-1P [AS 17 Krypton] how does an aircraft actually get targeting data if not equipped with specialised EW gear like that fitted on the Growler, Prowler and Tornado ECR?

Do you know if a Polish made KE round called the 'Pronit' has ever been produced?

In you opinion do the Russians still make the best performing 125mm KE rounds?

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To RAHUL: The existing mission sensor/avionics suite for the Tejas Mk1, which was conceived in the early 1990s and frozen at that time, can hardly be expected to retain its relevance till 2020. Just to give you one example, in the early 1990s there was no such thing as network-centric warfare, and consequently, performance issues connected with data-linking & air-to-ground effects-based operations were totally alien within India at large. Therefore, what the IAF & IN are now asking for is totally logical & imperative, especially since such solutions can be easily incorporated through international strategic military-industrial partnerships. In terms of the time factor, it is not the systems integration that is most time-consuming, but the validation of an aircraft’s fly-by-wire flight control system (FBW-FCS) & its flight-control laws that has posed consistent technological challenges. Without getting this right, one cannot proceed to the next stages of mission sensor integration & the related weapons qualification trials. Therefore, from a technological standpoint, for both the Tejas Mk1 & Mk2, the process of validating the FBW-FCS & its flight-control laws has been & will be the most time-consuming part of the overall R & D effort, something which was clearly over-estimated by ADA & the DRDO top-brass in the previous decade & yet they chose to do it in-house without reviving the R & D collaboration (after 2002) that ADA had contractually enjoyed with Lockheed Martin since the late 1980s till May 1998. This is something that even the likes of Dr A P J Abdul Kalam tend to deliberately overlook when writing about ADA’s achievements, thereby giving a false impression to non-suspecting “I wanna believe” Indian citizens. The fact remains that way back in the early 1980s, BAE Systems had offered to co-develop with HAL a FBW-FCS for the Jaguar IS/IM, an offer that was not taken up then to India’s eternal regret. If it had been taken up, then today we wouldn’t be witnessing the on-going charade about the Tejas Mk1’s multi-phase IOC & FOC schedules.
Concerning systems integration of the mission sensor/navigation-and-attack system (NAS) suite, this is the easiest part of the entire R & D exercise and takes no more than two years to complete. And whatever is now being sought for the Tejas Mk2 has either been selected for fitment on to MiG-29UPGs & Mirage 2000UPGs, or is destined to come as standard fit on the Rafales & FGFA. So, no one is being asked to embark upon ‘mission impossible’. In fact, on the Tejas Mk2 there should be enough internal space to install even a rearward-looking Skyward IRST sensor aft of the cockpit. As for frameless canopy actuation systems, these are there on board all existing IAF combat aircraft barring the MiG-21 Bison & MiG-27UPG.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Anon@11.41AM: YES.

To Anon@12.20PM: For accuracelt measuring the RCS of any combat aircraft, a full-scale replica of the aircraft’s airframe is required to be hoisted to a height of 70 feet then then subjected to RCS measurement tests at a dedicated RCS measurement range. Does such a facility exist within India? Not to the best of my knowledge. So far, all that ADA has done is subject a 1:24 scale model of the Tejas Mk1 to RCS measurement tests inside an anechoic chamber—hardly the best way to measure RCS. All other performance parameters of the Tejas Mk2 will be realized & validated ONLY AFTER the prototypes take to the skies. Till then, all figures are speculative.

To RAD: As I’ve explained above to RAHUL, integration of the mission sensor/navigation-and-attack system (NAS) suite will take only two years to complete PROVIDED the vendor-selection process is expedited. Regarding validation of the Tejas Mk2’s FBW-FCS & related flight-control logic, this is where the delays are expected most, but 2018, and not 2020, will be a realistic date by which these challenges should be overcome.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To BRADSHAW: Why is it NUTS? Hasn’t the same approach been resorted to regarding the Arjun Mk1A MBT? As I’ve explained above to RAHUL & RAD, the IAF & IN are not asking for the impossible to be achieved. What is NUTS, instead, is going for a flying training aircraft fleet comprising basic turboprop trainers (BTT), intermediate jet trainers (IJT) & advanced jet trainers (AJT), while totally leaving out the all-critical reqmt for lead-in fighter trainers (LIFT). The international norm is to have a fleet comprising BTTs, AJTs & LIFTs. But in case of the IAF, the BTT-IJT-AJT acquisition formula will leave a glaring gap concerning the LIFTs, since without LIFTs, aircrew teams destined to fly the tandem-seat Su-30MKIs, Rafales & FGFAs will face a severe flying training gap. This, in my view, is a terrible mistake that will only result in further human error-induced fatal air crashes in the years to come. Therefore, in my personal view, HAL’s HJT-36 IJT project should be scrapped & instead, money should be poured into development of a LIFT version of the existing tandem-seat operational conversion version of the Tejas Mk1 and at least 80 of these ought to be series-produced ASAP.
At a time when so much money has already been invested into the Tejas R & D effort, it makes no sense at all to go for Gripen NGs, since, like the Tejas Mk2, the Gripen NG too will be available only by 2020.

To ASWIN: The Vixen 850e AESA-MMR is derived from the Captor-E AESA-MMR that’s on the Eurofighter EF-2000 & therefore the Vixen 850e can be looked upon as being a mature product and somewhat superior to what’s being offered by ELTA Systems, Raytheon & Northrop Grumman.

To Anon@4.08PM: So far, only the Vixen 850e, Vixen 1000 & their parent Captor-E have innovative roll-repositionable AESA antenna to provide a full +/-100-degree field-of-regard, which allows the aircraft to turn away after a BVRAAM launch, whilst still maintaining data-linking with the BVRAAM. AMCA is at least two decades away and it is futile to even talk about it now. Vendor selection process has taken a long time due to financial constraints. Detailed designing of the Tejas Mk2’s airframe is complete and fabrication of fuselage sub-structures has already commenced. No CFTs on Tejas Mk2. The DRDO is developing air-to-ground PGMs like Sudarshan LGB family, Nirbhay cruise missiles & the supersonic ALCM. The new-generation 155mm/45-cal field artillery howitzer is at least a decade away. Right now everyone is toying with the idea of only a technology demonstration exercise.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To VIKRAM GUHA: The MiG-29K’s & MiG-29UPG’s Phazotron JSC-built Zhuk-M2E uses a mechanically scanning radar whose slotted-array antenna has to physically move in azimuth & elevation whenever it is searching & tracking airborne/ground targets. PESA & AESA on the other hand make uses of electronic scanning modes of operation. Mechanically scanning radars & PESA radars cannot undertake concurrent or interleaved operations, instead their modes of operation are sequential. For instance, when one is searching & tracking, fire-control operations (like guiding a BVRAAM or ARM) isn’t possible. With AESA-MMRs, all these functions can be carried out at the same time.

To INDIAN: The Vixen 850e AESA-MMR is derived from the Captor-E AESA-MMR that’s on the Eurofighter EF-2000 & therefore the Vixen 850e can be looked upon as being a mature product and somewhat superior to what’s being offered by ELTA Systems, Raytheon & Northrop Grumman. Both the Captor-E & RBE-2 grew out of the common AESA-MMR technology demonstration programme called AMSAR & therefore both are considered mature designs. Consequently, the Vixen 850e, derived from the Captor-E, is an equally mature product & the fact that it comes integrated with the Skyward IRST sensor (which is a derivative of the PIRATE IRST sensor on board the EF-2000) makes it superior to the EL/M-2052, RACR & SABR.

To FARIS: The jammers of the Su-30MKM are pod-mounted on wingtips, while those of the F/A-18D are internally-mounted. For the Kh-31P Krypton, targetting data is obtained by an externally pod-mounted direction-finding system. For the Su-30MKI, the SIVA pod was developed indigenously for this very purpose. Never came across the Pronit round thus far. The best 125mm KE rounds using tungsten-alloy penetrators come from Israel Military Industries & from Russia.

manoj joshi said...

Wanted a quote from you on an article I was writing on DRDO's BMD system for Mail Today. Am at manoj1951@gmail.com

Anurag said...

@Faris and Prasun da,
I don't think that Russians produce the best 125 mm FSAPDS T rounds anymore and neither the Israellis.The best 125mm FSAPDS T round currently in service is believed to be Ukranian Vitiaz with claimed armor penetration of 760mm RHA at 2 km which if true will far out class both the Russian 3BM44M Lekalo (640mm at 2 km) and IMI M 711 (570mm at 2 km)..

Anonymous said...

Sir, when detailed structural changes have been applied to the Tejas airframe, why doesnt the ADA add close coupled canards like the ones on Rafale, Gripen or like the one on EF Typhoon.
Also why isnt the payload being increased to 6+ tonnes from the present 3.5 t? When so much high tech stuff is going on board , why cant HAL make the mk2 similar to the F-16, or J-10 Sino-Canard?

Also what is the TR count of the Vixen 850e?Whats the difference between the 850 and the 1000?Why isnt the 1000 going on board?

Also what is the difference between the PIRATE & Skyward IRST? Is the Skyward a low capabilty and low cost version of the PIRATE?

Isnt the Spectra EW suite capable of active cancellation? Coz u said some time ago.Also why doesnt the IAF Sukhoi-30 mki feature the DECM(SAP51M) jamming pod?

Anonymous said...

sir.....does the su 30 mki has radar arrays on wing as of now or they are a part of upcoming upgrade ???

it is said that mki has the capability of looking 60km in the rear hemisphere...how is that possible ??

does it have a rear facing radar ??

does su 30 mki has any other radar antenna other than the one mounted on the nose....??

will tejas mk2 carry more internal fuel ??

any updates for the arjun mk2 ??

Vikram Guha said...

Dear Prasun , thanks a lot.

Regards,
Vikram

Anonymous said...

Prasun the Elbit Cockpit NG is really impressive. Compared to even Rafale's cockpit. Any chance that this cockpit can make it into Su-30 MKIs ?

Do you know what will be the radar area cross-section of the Super Su-30 MKI ? In its present form the Su-30 has a 10 m2 radar cross section. Can the Super upgrade bring the RCS significantly down like the F-15SE

Rahul said...

Prasun Sir thanks for reply, i also share your feelings about contemporary capability. However i am supportive of priority based approach considering our limited capability and sinister intentions of vested interests. That said, if ADA can get MK-2 design certified as well as CockpitNG and all those electronic capability installed at same time, then go for it.

Regarding frame-less canopy. I am not getting what are you referring to as frame-less canopy. From what i know no IAF fighter has a frame-less canopy like F-22's or J-20's or even like F-16's ..... Forgive me if i am being ignorant.

accidental loser said...

from last post.........
don't the IFF works with radar systems?????? I read carlo kopp's articles about switching off the radar can decrease the chances of detection too early compared to active radars emitting electromagnetic emissions. after all IFF would only interrogate the hostile emissions to get it's identity. so wudn't switching off all emissions & using passive way of surveillance wud make the Ac less visible????????????????
The DIRCM systems are installed only on transport systems and rotary wing attackers can't it be installed upon fixed.wing fighters too????????
About IADS, if it's so then how a strike force gonna penetrate the domes of engagement effectively??????
U mentioned in a previous article the RCS of j-20 gonna b 0.5 . but other sources points a much lower amount. what's the drama about it?????

accidental loser said...

li'l correction.......
tht article of carlo kopp said EMCON wud deny early warning to ESM systems & nt radars. I misunderstood it. so u can leave tht point.

Anand said...

Hi Prasun,

it seems a lot of foreign components will into mk2 including the radar n engine.What do you think will be the % of indigenously developed systems/components?Do you think the GTRE-SNECMA kaveri will be in future able to power the mk2? And the figure of IAF procuring 83 mks is goin to increase.Insn't it?

regards,

Anand.

Anonymous said...

AMCA has to go long distance but can LCA MK2 have the serpentine air intakes. Licefist posted a few pics.

http://livefist.blogspot.in/2012/07/stealth-air-intake-fabrication-for-amca.html

Anonymous said...

elbit ng helicopter cockpit looks great.is there any advantage in installing it in Dhruv and Light Combat Helicopter
wt reduction may be an advantage dont u think?

Mr. Ra 13 said...

Thanx! At places, you have explained all the generally requisite aspects of the Mig-27 in details and positive light. Now I too have some confidence in the Mig-27.43

Anonymous said...

I hear quite a lot of the advances made wrt avionics for j20 are being incoorportaed into j17 especially that it may now get the uprated engine....what is your take on this, is there any truth in this or is it just hot air from the paks?

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To ANURAG: The Vitiaz is most likely a mythical round that does not exist in reality. I saw no such round by this name being displayed at DEFEXPO 2012 and if indeed this round had existed, the Indian Army would have procured it instead of asking the Russians to bid for supplying the reqd 16,000 rounds. The IMI-built 125mm KE round has a penetration capability above 600mm RHA, although the exact figure remains classified.

To Anon@11.12AM: Canards aren’t reqd for high-wing aircraft & on those aircraft that feature compound delta wings. That’s why one doesn’t see them on the F/A-22 & F-35 either. Why should the payload be increased when the weight of offensive PGMs itself is being reduced? There’s therefore a need NOT for increased payload weights, but increased payload-carrying capacity on triple-ejector racks. The T/R count will be roughly 600 for the Vixen 850e. The Vixen-1000 is a slightly larger MMR for flight-test purposes. In all probability, the Vixen-850e will also go on board the Gripen-NG. Skuward IRST sensor is a low-cost derivative of the PIRATE. It is not inferior to the PIRATE. Active cancellation is an EW technique that is still being researched upon. The Su-30MKI makes use of EL/L-8222 self-protection pod & therefore wingtip-mounted pods aren’t reqd.

To Anon@2.13PM: Wing-mounted & tailfin-mounted AESA T/R modules will go only on the Super Su-30MKI, & are NOT PRESENT on any existing member of the Su-27/Su-30 family of combat aircraft. I already mentioned in the previous thread that none of the Su-27/Su-30 variants have rear-facing radar. They ALL have only one nose-mounted MMR. For glancing rearwards, the tandem cockpits both have rearview mirrors. No extra internal fuel for Tejas Mk2, & that’s why an aerial refuelling probe will be incorporated. Nothing new regarding Arjun Mk2 MBT.

To Anon@3.15PM: The Super Su-30MKI will have a Russia-sourced glass cockpit. I’m not aware of Russia manufacturing 22-inch panoramic AMLCDs. RCS reduction is part of the Super Su-30MKI upgrade effort. By how much remains to be seen.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To RAHUL: You’re only focussing on two words: frameless canopy, & leaving out the following two words: actuation system. That’s what confusing you. Add 2 + 2 and read all four words together & then it will make sense.

To ACCIDENTAL LOSER: One doesn’t require any emissions from any transponder to prove that an airborne platform is hostile. If an emission is received from an IFF transponder, then it means that the aircraft is friendly. If no emissions at all are received, then that non-responding transponder is automatically classified as hostile. DIRCMs require power generation capabilities of the type that’s not yet possible to fit on board combat aircraft. On the other hand, in helicopters & fixed-wing transport aircraft, there’s more than enough space to house the reqd power-generation sources. The RCS of the J-20 is still a matter of speculation outside the US & Russia.

To ANAND: The percentage of locally-built structures/components/sub-systems for the Tejas Mk2 will be about 50%. The GTRE-SNECMA Moteurs JV agreement has not yet been inked. Let’s see if it forms part of the Rafale M-MRCA procurement’s offsets. One will know about it only by the year’s end. The IAF could eventually order 166 Tejas Mk2.

To Anon@11.47PM: Does any combat aircraft have serpentine air intakes? The pictures you mention are of the AURA UCAV.

To Anon@12.10AM: The Dhruv Mk4/Rudra already has the glass cockpit and there’s no need for 22-inch panoramic AMLCDs for this helicopter. On the LCH, the 22-inch AMLCDs would be ideal.

To Anon@2.14AML It’s pure baloney & hot air. Why should any J-20-derived advances in avionics be first destined for the export-oriented JF-17, and not for the PLAAF’s PLAN’s J-10A/Bs, J-11Bs & J-15s? The JF-17s will receive only uprated RD-93 turbofans, but their TBOs & serviceability levels will stay the same, meaning the uprated engines won’t have a longer lifespan & will continue to emit exhaust fumes that will be visible for tens of miles with any decent IRST sensor. In short, the Ruskies & Chinese are taking the PAF for a great royal ride & then shortselling it!!! In any case, before all these grandiose daydreams about JF-17 enhancements are digested, let’s first wait and see how much longer will it take for the tandem-seat JF-17 OCU trainer to emerge. With such a conversion trainer, it will be next to impossible for any PAF pilot to convert from any existing combat aircraft to the JF-17. And that could well be the reason why the JF-17’s weapons qualification trials have been staggered at Chengdu over an extended timeframe.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Mr.RA 13: Do read this: http://www.stabroeknews.com/2012/news/breaking-news/07/09/india-ready-to-deliver-three-copters-to-suriname-army/

Unknown said...

Trishul in the light of the PNS MEHRAN attack in Pakistan are Indian military bases safe and well protected from any form of terror atta? How serious are defences at military bases and how well armed are security personall assigned to protect the bases? Do militaey bases have QRTs for instance to counter-attack and repal such an attack?

sureshkumar said...

In a recent interview of drdo chief said that AESA radar for LCA mk2 is on. T/R module code are developing in LRDE lab itself. Like how they developed the AEW&C radar(AESA Radar), which was completed ground test and will going to intergrate into Embraer aircraft. Why can't we develop tha AESA Radar on own for LCA. LCA mk2 take to sky only atleast 2016.so LRDE have more time develop the radar. Why should we go for Vixion radar?

bradshaw said...

Hi Prasun Da,

I was curious about the shape of fighter plane air intakes. Earlier planes like Mig 21 , F 18 hornets , Mirages etc uses oval intakes. And most of the modern fighters use square/rectangulat intakes like EF, Su 30 , Mig 29 , F -15, Gripen, PAK FA , F-35, F 22 etc. Indeed when F-18's were converted into Super hornets one of the biggest modification was to remove the oval intakes and use of square ones indeed which Wiki says was done to increase the efficiency and increase amount of air to engines.

But i was wondering why the Rafale still uses those oval intakes derived from Mirage 2000's ?? I hardly remember any modern twin engine a/c still using oval intakes keep aside the single engine 4th gen fighters like LCA, F-16 , JF 17 etc etc.

rad said...

HI Prasun

I wonder how the pakistani`s have got 2 operational sqdns of JF-17s when they dont have a tandem seat jf-17 , are the pilots so good that they jump from a mirage or a mig -21 to the jf-17 after some simulator training ? I am given to understand that only test pilots have that capacity . The JF-17 cockpit ergonoimics looks much better than the lCA on the outside becasue of the large displays like the gripen and I feel that the avionics should be equal or better as the chinese are more advanced than us in building fighter aircraft . whats your opinion?.

rad said...

Can smoke be detected by IRST , i thought only heat radiation could be detected?. You say that the ruskies and the chines are ripping the pakis off by selling a bad engine but then that same logic applies to us in the form of the MIG-29 engine?.You pay fro what you get , the cost of the engine is half of the f404 of the Lca.For them it should be ok as the initial cost of the ac will be less

dashu said...

Tejas Mk2 looks promising

dashu said...

but don't you think these components should be made in-house to be self reliant .

Dhruv said...

Sir , radar engines and displays are of foreign origin. These are the heart and brain of an aircraft, so what we have done after decades of R&D.

Anand said...

Hi Prasun,

I think you mentioned sum tym back dat project 17A FFGs hav been approved by CCNS.But yesterday i read it will come up b4 CCNS for approval.I guess design has already been frozen.When can we expect construction to start.Will MDL and GRSE start parallel construction?

Regards,

Anand

accidental loser said...

prasun,
u overlooked my question about how to counter modern IADS in a sustained air campaign???????

accidental loser said...

and another one,
Why's AK series assault rifles are preferred by COIN forces rather than INSAS rifles!!!!!!
what's the status of optronics on these AK series rifles. without picanitty rail there must b a nightmare fr the end users!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Hi Prasun,

Ur take on controversy over Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose's death.With ppl alleging Congress party covered up Bose's disappearance in Russia as he wud have challenged Nehru's ambitioins of independent india.

Anonymous said...

what u think about this is it good move or not

www.dailypioneer.com/home/online-channel/360-todays-newspaper/78204-jak-calm-rashtriya-rifles-to-take-n-e-job.html

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To UNKNOWN: That’s why the ‘Garud’ was created & surface movement detection radars installed in & around all principal IAF air bases.

To SURESHKUMAR: The S-band AESA-based radar for AEW & CS will be a fully developed product ONLY AFTER it obtains a certification for operational clearance, which is not expected for at least another four to six years. Similarly, when it comes to AESA-based MMRs, what you’ve said covers just the fabrication of some of the radar’s components. What about the programmable signals processor, the environment control system, & the evolution of various interleaved modes of operation? Who will work in all these areas? Where’s the testbed aircraft? Does the DRDO’s CABS or LRDE have any business jet reqd for serving as an airborne testbed for such sensors? One must remember that even for European countries like France, Italy, the UK, Spain and Germany, they all had to come together to undertake collective R & D efforts for developing AESA-MMRs. And it was only after 16 years of such efforts under the AMSAR programme that today one sees the emergence of RBE-2, Captor-E & Vixen family of AESA-MMRs. Can the DRDO match such R & D capabilities when it comes to AESA-MMRs? If Europe itself took 16 years to acquire the core technological competencies & human resource proficiencies related to AESA-MMRs, I don’t think it will be fair to expect India to acquire it all within a mere six years!

To BRADSHAW: I wouldn’t refer to the Rafale’s air intakes as being oval in shape. It is a unique design aimed at blending with the airframe.

To RAD: Having only two operational JF-17 squadrons since 2005 is not something to be proud of, especially considering the fact that the JF-17 is still undergoing weapons qualification tests in Chengdu. The JG-17’s cockpit design mimmicks that of the Gripen, that’s a given, but the mission avionics like LDPs are a generation behind those of the Tejas Mk1. For as long as the smoke is hot & radiates heat and is not at sub-zero temperature level, of course it can be detected by IRST sensors. Also, do note that what the PAF is destined to get is the Klimov RD-93MA turbofan, which is totally different from the RD-33 Series 3 and RD-33MK engines, which belong to a totally different generation.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To DASHU: One should differentiate between self-reliance & operational sovereignty. As I’ve already explained above, it will be decades before India can acquire the core technological competencies & human resource proficiencies to develop such cutting-edge mission sensors/avionics. Merely licence-assembling them under ToT does not ensure self-reliance. On the other hand, full ToT for servicing & upgrading them in phases does guarantee operational sovereignty over such products. It is therefore the latter that will be acquired by the IAF, instead of acquiring merely screwdriver technologies that only serve to preserve jobs for inefficient DPSUs.

By the way, do read this: http://www.frontlineonnet.com/stories/20120727291409100.htm

To ANAND: CCNS approval is of two kinds for locally-built military hardware: the first concerns approving the Defence Acquisition Council to proceed with the formulation of technical evaluation & financial negotiations committees. The second approval concerns the final approval for contract signatures. What is due in future is the second approval, following which detailed warship re-design will commence, followed by hull construction. By next year the keel-laying of the first P-17A FFG is expected to take place at MDL. After the lead vessel is launched, GRSE will begin fabricating the last three FFGs.

To ACCIDENTAL LOSER: The very same way in which the Iraqi & Serbian IADS were targetted for suppression & destruction in the 1990s—i.e. extensive usage of ELINT, SIGINT, airborne decoys & standoff PGMs. For COIN operations, the Tavors are always preferred over both the INSAS & AKs.

To Anon@12.07AM: It’s all been well-documented at: http://www.hindustantimes.com/news/specials/Netaji/netaji.htm

To Anon@12.32AM: Of course it is a good move, but only for temporary purposes. My personal view is that RR-type capabilities should be acquired by CAPFs like the CRPF & Assam Rifles, & the Indian Army must at all costs be kept away from internal security-related COIN operations. Similarly, the Army should never be employed for border patrolling/management (which only foster a defensive mindset), instead CAPFs like the BSF, ITBP and SSB should handle such tasks. The Army should be employed for only border domination operations & operations inside enemy territory.

Anonymous said...

Prasun Da,
The population of illegal Bangladeshi immigrants is rapidly increasing in India and Assam & Bengal has millions of them. In future this may result in a serious security problem. Now when Bangladesh is refusing to take them back, what can India do to for already infiltrated Bangladeshis?
Taking into account the international laws, can it be done that keeping the male & female immigrants in separate camps so that they cannot increase their population and entire population would die in 70-80 years?

rad said...

It still beats me how Pak pilots fly the jf-17 wihtout an OCU unit or as a matter a single tandem seat JF-17 .Are they in cold storage ,off flying?
well can we say that they are waiting for the weapons trial and integration and once its over they will all of a sudden have 2 sqdns plus fighters capable of active AAMs

Anonymous said...

Dear Sir Thank you VERY MUCH for all
this new information on LCA MK 2

You have said that RD 93 is DIFFERENT from RD 33 series 3 that IAF uses on Mig 29

Now PLEASE tell which is better and why

Anonymous said...

Sir,
1.U have said that canards arent required on high wing aircraft.What do you mean by high wing? Shoulder mounted wing. The Gripen ,J-10 has shoulder mounted wings and also feature canards.Doesnt inclusion of canards increase the manuverability.
2.All aircrafts feturing delta wings have poor turn rates.Delta wings are optimised for supersonic flight. They produce very low drag. Also aircrafts featuring delta wings cannot make close turns.They rapidly bleed off energy during high G turns and thus cant keep in turns. Has some of these shortcomings done away with the compound delta wing?
3.Why isnt the ADA going for a 1000 TR Vixen? A 1000 TR will offer greater range and help our Tejass to have an upper hand in BVR combat with the PAF F-16 Block-50/52 ,JF-17 and FC-20.
4.The Skyward IRST is a low cost derivative of the PIRATE IRST.Now ,if the cost is low, then obviously something will be missing.Some modes will be missing or the performance will be less. How can u get the same product when the cost is less.Why not go for the PIRATE?
5. Is the Elta-8222 jamming pod superior to the Russian DECM(SAP51M)?Does it have more band coverage, emits higher power and has features a greater no of jamming modes?
6.Though the weight of offensive weapons have come down, there will be no harm to increasing the payload to 6 t.After all the AASM Hammer is meant for the Rafale and its payload is 9.5 t.
7.When will the IAF place orders for the AASM and the ALARM? Will the AASM be procured in 1000s so as to become the principal stand-off PGM of the IAF.Why doesnt the AASM feature glide wings as was found in trhe Walleye so as to increase its range beyond 50 km.

Anonymous said...

Hi Prasun,
If the worlds airforces are ranked only in terms of combat ac-fighters, multirole combat aircraft, fighter bombers, interceptors, strategic bombers, reconnaisance aircrafts,helicopter gunships) and excluding military transport aircrafts and helos , then what would be the rank of the IAF? If only fighters are considered is the IAF truly the 4th largest airforce?
What is the present no of MiG-21 in the IAF? Apart from the Bison and Bis variants are any other types in IAF service at present?
Any good news on the MiG-27s?

accidental loser said...

prasun,
Why's nt india using gunships fr anti-maoist ops. Is it d same bullshit human ryts tht hold armd forces frm such advantages.
What's d status of army-af co-ordination fr jount ops????
what's d role of Forward air controllers other dan guiding air strikes?????
Can they b used to illuminate fr missile strikes????
Does India possess copperhead typ missiles?????

Anonymous said...

sir ,
regarding p-17 project to construct 7 frigates..when can we expect the 1st ship to be commissioned ?
whats the total project duration ?
& when is the p 15b project to start ?
what do u think is the ideal no. for principal surface combatants the indian navy needs?

Anonymous said...

sir ,
i have read ur various comments in different threads regarding india's mistake which lead to the indo-china war..I must say ur points were very logical indeed..w/o the usual drama by indians that indians can't be wrong..i liked how u saw things from a neutral point of view..sir can u tell a link or a book which u read to arrive at the conclusions in this regard..i wud like to better understand the topic but all the info is in fragments spread in various threads.

Vikram Guha said...

Dear Prasun da,

Is India interested in purchasing the AEGIS system from US ? I was reading somewhere that India has shown interest . This could well be a marketing plan by the US but would prefer to know your views.

Regards,
Vikram

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Anon@10.54AM: Just just in Assam & West Bengal, but in Tripura too. Various political parties in power since the 1970s in these three states have played vote-bank politics with these illegal migrants and the situation is now beyond redemption.

To RAD: Given the fact that pilot conversion takes place only by using the fixed-base cockpit procedures trainer, acquiring flight proficiency on the JF-17 is an extremely risky & dangerous proposition. I very much doubt if the PAF can muster more than 15 pilots that are flight-qualified on the JF-17. The PAF may therefore well have two squadrons worth of JF-17s, but not even one of them is fully operational by any stretch of the imagination.

To Anon@4.27PM: To know all that one just has to compare the time-between-overhauls (TBO) & total technical service life (TTSL) of the two respective engines. Obviously the RD-33-3 & RD-33MK, being of a newer generation, is far better than the RD-93MA. But Russian turbofans, even of the latest type, do not have a TTSL beyond 3,000 hours, whereas Western turbofans have a TTSL well in excess of 6,000 hours.

To Anon@6.50PM: The Gripen, Rafale & EF-2000 were all designs optimised for the Cold War era. Canards are today redundant and irrelevant since in dissimilar air combat since June 1982, there has not been a single instance of dogfights being waged. Therefore, instantaneous & sustained turn rates don’t matter anymore. Today & in future, what will dominate during air combat will be sensor fusion technologies associated with the combination of IRST sensors, HMD cueing systems & high-g sustaining within-visual-range AAMs; plus thrust-vectoring nozzles. I already explained much earlier that matters such as greater number of T/R modules or larger diameter antenna aperture don’t mean anything at all for AESA-MMRs. Neither can a standalone platform like a MRCA prevail over other MRCAs or M-MRCAs. What will matter most in future air combat scenariois is the level of network-centric integration of various platforms. Low-cost does not equate to low-quality. The PIRATE’s sensor fusion reqmts are tailored for the EF-2000 & are totally different from those reqmts for platforms like the Gripen NG or Tejas Mk2. The EL/L-8222 is a self-protection jammer optimised for neutralising older-generartion MR-SAMs and present-day SHORADS. The Russian EW pod, on the other hand, is used more for escort jamming purposes. One cannot compare the Rafale with the Tejas Mk2. The former is a M-MRCA while the Tejas Mk2 will be a MRCA. The AASM & ALARM will be ordered in supplemental contacts that will be inked AFTER the M-MRCA contract has been inked.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Anon@7.07PM: That is a fairly subjection issue, but quantitatively speaking, the IAF could well be No4 in the world. There are a couple of MiG-21UBs as well in service, in addition to the MiG-21 Bisons & MiG-21bis.

To ACCIDENTAL LOSER: How can helicopter gunships be employed against unseen or unidentified targets? If it was that easy to acquire, identify & track such targets, don’t you think by now the deployed CAPFs should have easily neutralised the Maoists? Defeating the Maoists permanently & in detail requires the existence of an extensive & elaborate information-gathering network of the type established by the Greyhounds of AP. There isn’t any other alternative. The IA-IAD coordination for joint operations in there only for symbolic reasons. Nothing has changed since mid-1999. FACs engage in only tactical airspace management & localisation of battlefield air interdiction missions. Target illumination is the job of the Garuds or Army’s SF (Para). Haven’t you heard of the Krasnopol-M since 1999? Read this: http://trishulgroup.blogspot.in/2009/07/truth-about-krasnopol-m-firing-trials.html

To Anon@11.03PM: Given the nature of such activities within India, no one can state with certainty the projected timelines or force structures.

To Anon@11.07PM: The best reading/reference materials for posterity on this issue can be found in the following weblinks:
http://www.frontlineonnet.com/stories/20120713291304400.htm

http://www.frontlineonnet.com/stories/20120727291409100.htm

http://www.fnsr.org/Backgrounders/back_india1.htm

http://www.frontlineonnet.com/fl2526/stories/20090102252608400.htm

http://www.hindu.com/fline/fl2319/stories/20061006006512300.htm

http://www.frontline.in/fl2320/stories/20061020001608500.htm

http://www.frontlineonnet.com/fl2117/stories/20040827000807500.htm

To VIKRAM GUHA: Plans for the Aegis combat management system were considered & rejected by India more than four years ago. The confirmed plan is to stick to ELTA Systems’ EL/M-2248 MF-STAR AESA-based shipborne multi-mode radar & related combat management systems developed by a team from the IN, BEL & IAI/ELTA for the seven P-17A FFGs, three P-15A DDGs & four P-15B DDGs.

SherKhan said...

Not having a 2-seat JF-17 is already causing major issues to standing up the 3rd sqdn. The first 2Sqdns had seniors come from F-16 sqdns, the switch was easier...now it is much much harder.

Anonymous said...

prasun,

the first photo of the article looks like tejas mk 3? is it a stealthy version

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Anon@4.21AM: It is just a GENERIC illustration by HAL of a new-generation MRCA. It has no connection whatsoever with any existing or planned combat aircraft. The photo was taken at the HAL booth showcasing the products of HALBIT Avionics Pvt Ltd during DEFEXPO 2012. Any future growth variant of the Tejas MRCA--if at all it exists--will never be shown at the HAL booth. Instead, it would be showcased at the DRDO's pavilion where ADA would be having a booth. Therefore, it's high time folks stopped speculating about that illustration being either that of a Tejas Mk3 or an AMCA, which is most unlikely to carry wingtip-mounted AAMs.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To SherKhan: I'm quite mystified by the fact that CAC Chengdu never gave any thought to developing a tandem-seat variant of the JF-17 concurrently with the single-seat MRCA version. This is unheard of worldwide especially when it comes to developing new-generation MRCAs.

Anonymous said...

Recently in an interview, Dr. Saraswat mentioned he has seen a 1/8th sized prototype of the fighter's AESA-MMR at LRDE and the problem remaining is of scaling it. Any reason why they can't mount this on choppers?

rad said...

HI Prasun

In a previous issue of the Vayu where an article of the Barak SAM was high lighted it was clearly mentioned at the end of the article that the barak SAM could be easily converted to an advanced air to air missile . Having invested billions into SAM program in all its versions, does it not make sense to convert it into a long range AAM. If the normal range of a barak is said to be 70 km then an air launched one would easily reach upto 150 kms or more as the energy needed to get to operational speed is much less, moreover the active seeker and the data link which are the costliest and the most difficult to develop would be mature . All it needs is some structural strengthening to take care of the air to air role. WE can also ask them to put the seeker of the python -5 on the missile and have a silent data linked IR missile. The majority of the air to air kills are by IR missiles. Further we can ask them to develop an Anti radiation high speed missile using the same airframe with the seeker changed in the league of the new HARM that homes in even after the radar is switched off. After all it should not be a problem integrating it on the LCA or the Rafale as the radar fire control source code will be available with us , why is int any body talking about this ,or have i gone wrong some where? please comment

rad said...

If we have a barak converted into an AAM then we can easily out range the AAMRAAM - f-16 combo or the SD_-10 missile that is going to be operational on the JF-17 which seems to have an edge in range over the amraam . Dont you think that the R-77 that we have is a severely compromised missile as the chinese also have it and would have definately known the means how to jam it, as we have the missile as well and would have fed it into the EW jamming systems of the JF-17 . Dont you think we will be in a great disadvantage due to this ?.which makes for a great case to develop the barak into a AAM and not wait for the home made AAM which would be far inferior to the barak version in all aspects.

SK said...

Prasun,
The present turf war between Army and IAF for attack & heavy helicopters will go on. No political leader will stick his nose in the issue to sort it out. In a way the army at best has armed helicopter in the likes of HAL Rudra. Can this chopper be fitted with the Picosar AESA radar along with a FLIR turret ?
Can a more stubbier wings/weapon carriages be incorporated so that more Anti-Tank missiles can be carried ?
Can any chopper in the world carry and use PGMs?

Vikram Guha said...

To Anon@10.54AM : Where there is a will there is a way . Do you see how the Burmese are throwing away these Bangladeshis or how Bhutanese are throwing away Nepalis . Because we continue to vote for pseudo secular parties that this country is getting filled with illegal Muslims from Bangladesh.

Prasun Da , many thanks for your reply to my question.

F said...

Prasun,

Is it true that on the T-72 and the T-90, there is a metal protective cover - that is thicker that the turret roof - that protects the carousel loader?

In the T-72 and the T-90, how many rounds of ammo are stored in the carousel loader and where is the reserve ammo stored, the sides of the turret or the turret or hull floor?

How are turret mounted MGs fired and aimed from inside the turret? What kind of controls are used?

Which company supplied the MRI for the PT-91M?

Have you seen this? Are you not surprised that 54 turrets, fitted with Ingwe has been ordered?

http://www.defenceweb.co.za/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=26673:denel-inks-r35-billion-deal-with-malaysia&catid=50:Land&Itemid=105

Is Ingwe the latest name to be used for what was once called the Mokopa and the ZT3? Didn't you mention that, like the Iranian Toophan, it's basicly a copy of TOW? Where did the South Africans get their hand on a TOW? I'm very curious as to why, despite all the work put in it by Denel, that Ingwe has no top-attack function.

Anonymous said...

Hi Prasun, has the IAF got any dedicated EW range or facility where it can field test its different array of jammers, find out whether the internal jammers onboard the MiG-29,Sukhoi-30mki,Mirage 2000 & Elta-8222 can effectively jam , confuse and ultimately defeat active and semi active BVRAAM such as the ones in IAF inventory - R-77,R-27,and then AIM-120,Sparrow,MICA. If they are capable of jamming the R-77, then IAF fighters will be immune to most PLAAF BVRAAM because they all utilise a reverse engineered version of the Agat seeker.Also the jammers can be tested aginst search and survellience radars, engagement radars of various SAM systems-SHORADS, point defense and area defense sams.Pilots will get to know better upto what the jammers are capable of.The IAF personel can effectively tune the various EW sets.Also the pilots can practise SEAD,DEAD missions.The tacticians can devise new ways and techniques of defeating modern RF threats and tackel present gen ground based radars and AESA MMRs.What jammers are used as escort jammers with the Sukhois,MiG-29,Mirage 2000,Jag and MiG-27? Also will the IAF procure any reuasble RF towed decoys for its flleet of Su-30mki,Mirage-2000 UPG,MiG-29UPG,Rafale like the Ariel decoy aboard the Typhoon.

Anonymous said...

Hi Prasun,

With such ever changing requirements from IAF and NAVY how can our scientist meet the demands.

Even if we outsource products, i dont think we will be able master all these in a making a 100% complete indegenous fighter..

Penmil said...

Sir,
Thanks for the details on the likely weapons/systems suit on Tajas Mk 2.
You said,
<< The principal lightweight PGM destined for the Tejas Mk2 (as well as for the Rafale M-MRCA and Mirage 2000UPG) is likely to be the AASM Hammer modular air-to-ground weapon built by France’s SAGEM Défense Sécurité >>
and again,
<>
Is AASM Hammer( the Laser Version of it) compatible with Litening-3 LDP, or the Thales Damocles targeting pod, will be required for illuminating the target by laser radiation?

SherKhan said...

Hi Prasun,

Like you say it was not the best approach. What doesn't help is that apart from the F-16 pilots the rest are not used to the same level of tech. The need for a 2-seat is as they say a no-brainer. PAF really screwed up and now as you rightly say they have more planes then pilots to fly them.

My take is that they put far too much faith in simulators(thinking f-22). Off course it didn't help that PLAAF were far more interested in J-10 than JF-17. Having said all that there is a sort of push to get a 2 seater trainer/attack going. That will take years.

Anonymous said...

Hi Prasun, according to you ," That is a fairly subjection issue, but quantitatively speaking, the IAF could well be No4 in the world. There are a couple of MiG-21UBs as well in service, in addition to the MiG-21 Bisons & MiG-21bis ".This is a very general ans.Pls give some details.Wanting to know about the exact ranking for long.But as u said, the figures in Wikipedia are not correct.Most airforces have downsized their fleet.While many Asian ones have been steadily increasing.The Saudi airforce is big.JSDAF is also very large.

Has the follow-on order for 4 additional P-8I been inked?Will the 8 Poseidons replace the Tu-142,Il-38 or supplement them?

How many FC-20 are currently in PAF service & how many has they contracted for?

Mr. Ra 13 said...

I envisage that Tejas Mk2 is mostly not going to be used against China. Is it correct.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Anon@9.21AM: The way you’ve drafted comment, it appears as if one day when Dr V K Saraswat was taking a stroll along the LRDE cluster of laboratories, he by chance came across a 1/8th scale-model of an AESA-MMR under development, which to his utter glee now only needs to be up-scaled ….
When it comes to developing such products in a laboratory, they are never fabricated to smaller size-scales. Quite to the contrary, the size is always much bigger than the final product, because it is always an easier task to down-scale rather than up-scale. For instance, the L-STAR AESA-based S-band airborne surveillance radar for the EMB-145I AEW & CS is 10 metres-long, whereas the final production-series radar will be only eight metres-long.

To RAD: Beyond-visual-range air combat is waged primarily with air combat tactics, & not just with BVRAAMs. No BVRAAM will fly straight just as the crow flies, & therefore longer maximum ranges don’t matter at all. What matters most in beyond-visual-range air combat is one’s ability to position oneself (with the help of AEW & C platforms) at a location from which the targetted airborne platforms can be ambushed, which primarily involves flank attacks. Furthermore, when using IRST sensors & HMD-based cueing systems, longer-range IIR-guided AAMs can be put to use, like the R-27RET1 & MICA-IR, which give little or no warning (for those aircraft devoid of MAWS) of such inbound AAMs. In my view, therefore, the future belongs to such AAMs for decisive aerial engagements. That’s why since June 1982 till to date, the maximum number of successful interceptions have been achieved with within-visual-range AAMs, & not BVRAAMs. R-77s of China & India have identical active radar seekers, but totally different operating frequency spectrums, which is made possible after the BVRAAM’s OEM gives the customer the crypto-keys necessary for pre-programming the operating frequencies of the BVRAAM’s terminal radar seeker. So there’s no question of any kind of compromise.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To SK: The turf war between Army & IAF HQs is totally unnecessary, because all one has to do is dig into the MoD’s archives & discover the letter written by the then Raksha Rajya Mantri (RRM) Arun Singh in mid-1986 to the two armed services HQs, in which it is clearly stated that the Govt of India & MoD “will in future ensure that the IA is authorised to be equipped with its own integral fleet of attack helicopters as part of the IA’s plan to raise its integral Combat Aviation Brigade.” But memories being short for many, I wonder if anyone in the MoD ever remembers anything about this letter today! There is an easy way to go around the problem, & this is exactly what is now happening: authorise & finance the IA’s plans for raising its Combat Aviation Brigades through the procurement of ‘Rudra’ helicopter-gunships. Sometime back (about a year ago) I had drafted a proposal (for a seminar on Future Army Aviation Reqmts) calling for such helicopter-gunships to be inducted in large numbers & be supplemented by a version of the Rudra that would be armed with only four Mistral-ATAM AAMs for self-protection, but which would be equipped with extra internal fuel tanks & a belly-mounted X-band AESA-base synthetic aperture radar that closely resembles the Selex Galileo-built miniaturised Seaspray 7000e maritime surveillance radar. In fact, last April, when I asked Selex Galileo if it was possible to quickly develop such a ground surveillance version of the Seaspray 7000e, the company’s officials replied in the affirmative. Such a radar would not only undertake real-time detection of moving ground targets well beyond the horizon from standoff distances, but would also serve as an airborne command & control platform in support of decisive armoured engagements, especially those involving Brigade-sized Integrated Battle Groups. Moreover, such a version of ‘Rudra’ will greatly reduce the present-day reliance on LOHs whose only observation tool is a FLIR turret & due to which the LOH risks getting into the enemy’s line of fire using VSHORADS & SHORADS. If the IA’s Aviation Corps were to go for this combination (about 20 such Seaspray 7000e-equipped Rudras & about 120 Rudras each armed with four ATGMs), then the IA would have a far more lethal armoured war-waging capability than what it now has, & most importantly, the IA will in almost all armoured warfare scenarios, be able to seize & maintain the initiative & achieve operational surprise, while denying all that to the enemy. The IAF’s AH-64Ds, Mi-25s & Mi-35Ps, on the other hand, can focus more on carrying out tactical interdiction by attacking targets in the enemy’s deep-rear, since this is what the IAF has always wanted to do with its attack helicopter assets.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Vikram Guha: Very many thanks.

To FARIS: Firstly, do watch this in case you already haven’t: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kv9Adb3EuVE&feature=related
The carousel autoloader is protected, but it doesn’t have the same level of armoured protection as that for the turret. The carousel typically houses 22 rounds, while the rest are stored on the hull’s floor. Presently, there are no remotely-controlled turret-mounted MGs on either the T-72 or T-90S, although some remote-control weapon stations (RCWS) have been developed worldwide & are being offered for retrofit. The PT-91M’s MRS came from Slovakia. The Ingwe is totally different from the larger & heavier Mokopa. In all probability, the South Africans during the Iran-Iraq war got hold of some examples of TOW ATGMs from the Iranians for reverse-engineering & in return taught the Iranians how to do the same & come up with the Toophan clone of TOW. There’s also a Chinese clone of TOW from NORINCO. In Apartheid-era SA, there was never a shortage of gold Krueger-Rands & diamonds (which were being extracted from the mines of pre-independent Namibia) which was always put to good use for acquiring both military-industrial technologies as well as for developing new weapons. That’s how Spain’s Santa Barbara’s expertise was obtained for both designing & learning how to build the G-5/GC-45 family of 155mm/45-cal howitzers. These howitzers were never developed inside SA from scratch, instead they were developed in Spain & their production know-how was ‘bought’ by ARMSCOR from Santa Barbara. The Malaysian Army’s G-5 Mk.2000’s, therefore have a rich but covert Spanish ‘ancestry’. Lastly, very few infantry-launched ATGMs have top-attack capabilities. Most of the top-attack ATGMs are either launched from helicopters, or from combat aircraft.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Anon@5.53PM: There’s no dedicated full-time EW test-range within India, but what exists are rangeless EW systems developed by DARE, that are used to simulate the EW environment in any weapons-firing range. What matters most in beyond-visual-range air combat is one’s ability to position oneself (with the help of AEW & C platforms) at a location from which the targetted airborne platforms can be ambushed, which primarily involves flank attacks. Furthermore, when using IRST sensors & HMD-based cueing systems, longer-range IIR-guided AAMs can be put to use, like the R-27RET1 & MICA-IR, which give little or no warning (for those aircraft devoid of MAWS) of such inbound AAMs. In my view, therefore, the future belongs to such AAMs for decisive aerial engagements. That’s why since June 1982 till to date, the maximum number of successful interceptions have been achieved with within-visual-range AAMs, & not BVRAAMs. R-77s of China & India have identical active radar seekers, but totally different operating frequency spectrums, which is made possible after the BVRAAM’s OEM gives the customer the crypto-keys necessary for pre-programming the operating frequencies of the BVRAAM’s terminal radar seeker. So there’s no question of any kind of compromise. There’s no distinct difference between a self-protection jammer & escort jammer. The former, if deployed in adequate numbers, easily becomes the latter as well. The standard ratio of deployment is 1: 2, i.e. for every two aircraft, there must be one self-protection jammer. In the PAF’s & NATO’s case, for example, for every two F-16s, there’s one ALQ-131 EW pod. The IAF follows the same practice with its EL/L-8222 pods (on the Su-30MKIs, MiG-21 Bisons & Jaguar US), while the MiG-27UPGs have the DARE-developed ‘Tusker’ pods, & the Mirage 2000s have BAREM pods.

To PENMIL: All present-day LDPs like the Litening-2/3 & Damocles are fully compatible with any kind of laser-guided PGM, be it the Hammer AASM or even Paveway-2/3/4 LGBs & Opher LGBs.

To SherKhan: VMT.

To Anon@9.54PM: The four follow-on P-8Is have not yet been ordered. The P-8Is will NOT replace existing Tu-142Ms or IL-38SDs. Instead, there’s a plan to upgrade the Tu-142Ms by equipping them with the ‘Sea Scorpion’ suite similar to what’s on the IL-38SDs. The PAF does not yet operate any FC-20s, but 40 of them are on order—36 single-seaters & 4 tandem-seaters.

To Mr.RA 13: The Tejas Mk1 & Tejas Mk2 will both be deployable against the PRC. If not, then the Tejas Mk1 would not have been ferried to Leh for high-altitude flight-qualification trials, would it? The Tejas is omni-role & omni-directional, & is not meant for country-specific targetting/deployment.
By the way, do read this: http://www.indianexpress.com/news/former-raw-officer-tells-the-complete-story-of-the-double-agent-who-got-away/974584/0

Anonymous said...

so sir , it finally emerges that the IAF will not part with its helicopter fleet ?
what is the problem with the IAF ,cant it see the global practice where armies operate more helicopters than air forces do..when the helicopters are used for supporting ground troops mostly then it is ideal that army operates them..IAF can operate them for their distict roles as well..
now y have rudra with the army and apaches with the IAF..again multiple authorities to carry same tasks..y not have attack helos light or heavy in the army only ?

Anonymous said...

sir ,
do u think this book by amar bhushan reveal anything significant ?
or is he just doing this for financial gains..sort of basking in the glory of an old story..?
y did the RAW let the man escape..if they know abt the where abouts of this spy then y dont they smuggle him to india ?
what do u say abt the workings of RAW..are they any good ?
& y do IPS officers get posted to raw? its an intelligence agency & not an police org..even technocrats from doordarshan are posted to raw..y this mess..y cant raw be solely manned by proffessional intelligence officers ?

soumyadip said...

hello sir,

regarding R&AW,after 26/11 mumbai attacks there was one report on either frontline or india today(idont remember exactly which one) in which a former intelligence official either from R&AW or IB or might be army stated that R&AW was somewhat good at technical intelligence but poor at human intelligence....is it true.....and if it is then what does that mean......does it mean that the organization is good at taking pictures with an UAV but don't have good spies operating on foreign soil....

Heberian said...

Hello Soumyadip-
Pending Prasun's reply, I have some thoughts to share about the R&AW. Like most intelligence services, it has its share of ups and downs. And as usual, it is the "downs" that get publicity. Think about it, has the CIA or MI6 or the Mossad or MSS not have failures?

What has been lacking is, among other things, :

1) Will from the political masters
2) Cohesion between operatives/officers from different cadre as they gain seniority in the pyramid
3)Dedicated, long term harnessing of all available resources, with foresight.

The gentleman whose article you read is very dependable and incisive about his comments not only about the R&AW, but about intelligence matters in general. He was with the R&AW, from the IPS cadre and had done some stellar work for the nation.

ABout HUMINT, the R&AW does have "spies" in Pakistan, but the covert action capability was rolled back by one of our misguided former PM's .. as for HUMINT in China, the R&AW are not where they ought to be.

As for operatives/officers from the IPS or from the R&AW cadre or from MI, it really does not matter till seniority struggles/turf wars/fight for patronage begin.

But that is true of most of our institutions... no?

soumyadip said...

to Heberian,

thank you very much for your reply

yes,the CIA or MI6 or the Mossad or MSS have failures but the thing is they have tried,failed and have learned from mistakes but are we trying anything at all........the reasons you have mentioned are valid i guess but even after knowing them what are we doing to improve the situation.........regarding china do u think tibetans might prove helpful in any way.Prasun sir is always saying we have aided in creation of tibetan militancy or something like that....

Anonymous said...

Hi Prasun, I am anon at July 14, 2012 5:53 PM. What i wanted to ask is whether the internal jammers of Mirage 2000,MiG-29,Sukhoi-30mki ,EL-8222 have been found to succesfully jam,confuse and defeat Rf guided missiles, both ARH & SARH-R-77,R-27,... & MMRs and ground based radars .Has the IAF field tested the jammers against such threats and has the results been favorable? Has the IAF actually pitted the jammers against all the RF guided BVRAAM in IAF service and has the jammers emerged victorious?

Why there is self protection jammer per pair of acs ?Why cant all of the jets carry a ECM pod?

Can u pls give some details regarding the BAREM and TUSKER EW pods?Is the TUSKER pod a reverse engineered version of some Israeli pod or it has been designed from scratch by DRDO? Is is capable of defeating monopulse radrs and modern sophisticated RF threats?Has it been designed specially for MiG-27?

Are the internal jammers in the MiG-29B-12 any good? Despite the presence of such jammers why so many Iraqi MiG-29s were lost to BVRAAMs in Op Desert Storm and also many MiG-29s were lost to Sparrows in Operation Allied force.

Will the upgraded MiG-29 UPG,Mirage 2000 UPG feature MAWS?Are any reuasble towed RF decoy systems in service with the IAF?

Anonymous said...

Dear Sir Please answer my question

Pakistanis are saying that RUSSIA
has BARRED the EXPORT of AL 31
Engines to Pakistan

Hence the EXPORT of J 10 A CANNOT happen and J 10 B will carry CHINESE Engines WS 10 ONLY

Is it True ? Please tell . Thanks in Advance

Heberian said...

Soumaydip-

You are welcome!

Of course R&AW are learning and changing and adapting, but usually in their own,perhaps glacially slow manner. Surely you wouldnt expect the lessons learnt and changes being made to be available in the public domain..? I am sure you have noticed that no intelligence service publicizes its evolving strategies and capabilities..

If anything, like with most things wrong in our country, what is needed is a pragmatic and wise political class.. the institutions need political behind them..and they are easily among the exceptional. And besides, we are not Pakistan for the R&AW to have a life of its won like the ISI.. and that is something for us to be proud and thankful about.

If you have keenly followed Prasun's posts about the evolution and mostly strategic failures of our China policies and total lack of pragmatism, then you would have derived some sad but hard hitting truths. The information has always been available in the public domain in India, but we are not so good at facing and dealing with "kadwa sachch" .. are we?

Many of our founding fathers and "chachas" were not as wise as we like portraying them.

Have a nice Sunday!

Anonymous said...

Sir, dont u think that a payload of only 4 ATGM s for the Rudra is a sheer waste of launch platforms.The Army Aviation Corps should ask HAL to redisgn and strengthen the stub wings to enable the carriage of at least 8 ATGMs.Also as u said earlier,each of the Rudras should have a nose mounted MMR-the Selex Galileo pico SAR radar. The AAC can go for a smaller no of Rudras and instead procure Apaches in good nos(60+).

Anonymous said...

Hi Prasun, whats the status of the Barak JV.We are presently developing 2 distinct Barak :Barak-2 with a 70 km range for equipping Navy FFG & DDG and Bark-8 with 120 km range for the IAF & IA. When will the Barak-8 have its 1st test flight.When will it enter series production. Apart from the firm order of 400 something missiles wont the IAF order more? Will the IAF entrust the base defense only to Akash mk2? A handicap missile with only 40 km range? Will the IA order them in sizable quantities? Apart from the 3 Spyder SR regiments in IA service, are there any squadrons in IAF service?

Who will manufacture the Akash mk2,Barak-8? The BDL has its hands full and how can it hope to produce, overhaul so many missile types in just 3 plants?

Anonymous said...

Prasun, is the Rafale X-GUARD towed decoy in service with the Sukhois? Is this decoy reuasble or expendable? How many such systems have been procured? The IN currently has a fleet of 8 Tu-142 and 5 Il-38 SD? When will this fleet be retired? What will be the likely replacement?

rad said...

HI Prasun

Please comment on the idea to convert the barak sam into and AAM and it version as well which i had posted earlier above, dont you think it is a fantastic proposition.

F said...

Prasun,

I was under the impression that the technology used for the G-5 was obtained by Denel, from Armscor, from that developed by Gerald Bull, to make the GHN-45 [used by the Thai marines], which was made by Noricum?

The only top attack missiles I can think of are TOW 1, Spike, Javelin and Bill, which was the first. And of course the Nag. The Russians are reportedly woking on a version of Konkurs that will have a top attack function. Due to advances in armour technology and the widespread use of applique or 'add on' armour, I think we will soon reach a stage where all ATGWs will have a top attack function.

You mentioned in 2009 that Anza 1 was a copy of the QW-1 and that Anza Mk2 was a copy of the QW-2.
Didn't the Pakistanis use Stinger technology - from those secretly obtained from Hetmatyer's Herb Islami in the 1980's - on the Anza? Did the Malaysians get Anza 1 or 2?

soumyadip said...

to Heberian,

again thank you very much for the quick reply and a nice sunday not only to you but all the visitors too....

Anonymous said...

prasun

why is Cummings QSK-38/ESM-500 powerpack not installed on Arjun mkII?
Any info on Mk2 variant of its Kanchan modular armour?
When will Iron Fist APS and Barracuda Camouflage MCS will be installed on Arjun mkII along with LDE-150 APS in T-90 ?
Why is Gunners main sight cut out from the front side armour of the turret remains in Arjun mkII as is weakens the frontal armour?any future chance of changing it

where is NERA installed on Arjun mkII?

Anonymous said...

Sir,
1.When will the overhaul facility for Su-30mki come up? The 1st 3 suadrons has reached 1000 flight hours and are due for overhaul. Has they been shipped to Irkut for overhaul?
2.Any good news on the MiG-27 fleet? When will they be airworthy?
3.What do you mean by TTSL? After an engine reaches TTSL, does it becomes unusable and has to be disposed off?Tne Mig-29upg has a TSL of 6000 hrs while the RD-33 has TTSL of 4000 hrs. So after 4000 hrs has been reached, what will happen to the airframe. 2k hours are still left on it.
4.The civilian aircrafts such as the airliners and airbuses have 1000000 flight hours of TSL.Their turbofans also have similar lives. Then why do the military jets, fighter aircrafts have such low TSL- 6000 flight hours.

Mr. Ra 13 said...

Thanx! I was connecting Tejas Mk1 and Leh testing only for uses at Kargil like sites on Paki front.

BTW, can it not be possible that the so-called Mr. Ravi Mohan was a double agent working for benefit of both the organizations.

KSK said...

F-414 Vs Eurojet 2000
Why was F-414 was chosen? was it because it was lowest bidder?
I think technology involved in Eurojet 2000 is better as it was entirely developed for Typhoon...also Europeans r desperate to sell military hardware we could demand more TOT...ur words?

SK said...

Prasun,
Thank you for the previous reply. Other than US is any country developing Dual band radars for ships ? Have the Israeli's shown any interest in this. Can we expect any in IN ships in this decade ?

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Anon@6.20AM: This is what turf-wars are all about. The IAF suspects that today the Army is asking for ownership of attack helicopters & tomorrow the Army will demand ownership of utility helicopters as well, leaving the IAF devoid of any worthwhile rotary-winged aircraft assets. Therefore, the only logical & practical compromise formula should be as follows: gradual transfer ownership of existing IAF-owned attack & utility helicopters, & concurrently authorising the IAF’s request for procuring a fleet of combat SAR helicopters.

To Anon@6.35AM: If at all it reveals anything, it is that every such agency, be it IB, NTRO or R & AW, should be under parliamentary & the CAG’s oversight, especially when it comes to financial matters & strategic goal-setting. Furthermore, the tradition of recruiting IPS & Police personnel is an unhealthy practice, because be it in the armed forces or police agencies, strict regimentation is the norm, instead of out-of-the-box thinking & analysis. Intakes into R & AW should be limited to only the RAS cadre, which in turn will build up camaderie & espirit de corps, both of which are presently lacking. Therefore, as you have stated, professionalism should never be compromised.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To SOUMYADIP & HEBERIAN: There are several misconceptions about R & AW, & as they say, beauty lies in the eye of the beholder. For instance, if you were to monitor the various Pakistani TV channels’ talk-shows (as I do), you will realise that Pakistan’s security establishment is paranoid about the activities of the CIA, MOSSAD & R & AW, & it is always alleged in such talk-shows that these three agencies are collaborating with one another against Pakistan. In fact, (anecdote time) I was once exposed to a spectacularly & outrageously hilarious incident when I went calling as a matter of routine on some Pakistani diplomats at a Pakistan High Commission abroad and it was then I saw with my own eyes in their offices a bulk consignment of newly-printed books written about R & AW (demonising it, of course) by Nepalese Hindu authors, all of which were published & printed inside Nepal, but were being distributed as complimentary copies worldwide by Pakistan’s Embassies & High Commissions. Now, if R & AW is indeed perceived as being a totally useless entity, then how come Muslim Pakistani & their Hindu Nepalese compatriots would go to such lengths to “expose the tentacles of R & AW’???
Here’s another anecdote: there was a very good reason why the IAF had dispersed its combat aircraft assets of the Western & central Air Commands between November 28 and December 3, 1971. The IAF could achieve this because one of R & AW’s prized assets embedded deep within Pakistan’s martial law regime had informed R & AW about the PAF’s decision to stage pre-emptive air-strikes against India on the evening of December 3, 1971.
Here’s the last anecdote: The trunk-line telephone conversation between the GHQ Rawalpindi-based Lt Gen Mohammed Aziz, Pakistan's Chief of General Staff and his boss, the Army Chief Gen Pervez Musharraf who was in a hotel room in Beijing between May 26 and May 29, 1999, was NOT intercepted by R & AW as popularly believed, but was in fact GIVEN to R & AW by China’s Ministry of State Security’s Public Security Bureau (PSB). Both R & AW & the PSB have since the early 1980s maintained close liaison realtions under which annual bilateral meetings are held in each other’s country. Iy was under the auspices of such liaison that the taped conversations were given by the PSB to R & AW provided the Govt of India used it only for the ears of Mian Mohd Nawaz Sharif & his Cabinet—this being seen by Beijing as being an attempt by India to help Nawaz Sharif to confront Gen Musharraf about the Kargil mis-adventure & force the Pakistan Army to call it off. By June 4, 1999 India, through R K Mishra & Vivek Katju, had hand-delivered the taped conversations, along with a written transcript to Nawaz Sharif himself. From the Indian & Chinese viewpoints, such data nailed Gen Musharraf’s lie that the corss-LoC intrusions were a non-military affair. Two, they exposed the fact that Gen Musharraf and his fellow commanders were dealing with Nawaz strictly on a need-to-know basis.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

Continued from above.....
The then R & AW Secretary, Arvind Dave, National Security Adviser Brajesh Mishra and External Affairs Minister Jaswant Singh had initially calculated that once brought face-to-face with such evidence--and the hint of more tapes and wire-taps in India’s possession--the situation along the LoCmight improve. However, this did not happen & on June 11, 1999--a full week after Nawaz Sharif had heard the tapes and on the eve of the then Pakistani Foreign Minister Sartaj Aziz’s visit to Delhi--the taped conversations were made public at a press conference in a last-ditch effort to increase the pressure on Nawaz Sharif, who had been unwilling or was unable to stop Gen Musharraf’s mis-adventurism. This action, in my view was a grave mistake, since the taped conversations clearly revealed that they were more audible from the Rawalpindi-end, indicating that since the SIGINT post monitoring the telephone conversations got its break over Islamabad, & not Beijing, it could only have been the Chinese Embassy in Islamabad that had such a dedicated SIGINT capability, as neither the US Embassy nor the Indian High Commission there was physically in a position to tap the land-lines existing between Pakistan & China that passed through the Northern Areas into Xinjiang. Needless to say, Beijing was extremely pissed off by India’s public exposure of the taped conversations, and in order to make amends for this, the PLA’s Border Defence Regiments resorted to several transgressions of the LAC in Aksai Chin and southeastern Ladakh during the course of OP Vijay. That is why I’ve always stated that there’s more to it than what meets the eye when it comes to Sino-Indian relations, & the constant China-bashing ‘nautankis’ & ‘tamashas’ resorted to by the ‘desi’ mass-media agencies/entities is uncalled for many a time, if not always.
Regarding the Tibetans, I’m afraid they’re of no use to Indian intelligence agencies since China has blocked all ingress/engress routes by land by fencing off its borders with both Nepal & India. Furthermore, India lacks the human resources necessary for mounting intelligence-driven missions inside TAR since only able-bodied Tibetans can be engaged as operatives for either information-gathering activities or subversive operations, whereas the only Tibetan refugees residing within India are all middle-aged or senior citizen-type monks. The only period when motivated young Tibetan tribal folk were willing to engage in subversive activities within TAR at India’s & the USA’s behest was between the years 1957 and 1975 (deyails of which have been extensively documented & published). Since the early 1980s, R & AW’s Special Frontier Force (Establishment 22) has been entirely composed of Indian citizens, mostly of Ladakhi origin.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Anon@11.10AM: If those airborne jammers were not successful, then they would not have been acquired by NATO/former Warsaw Pact countries or other export customers like India. Field-testing is reqd only for pre-production prototypes, & never for fully developed products. The reason why all combat aircraft do have external self-protection pods is because they’re not reqd. So why insist on a capability-overload? Data on BAREM is available at THALES Avionics’ website. The TUSKER was tailor-made for the MiG-27UPG. Nothing was reverse-/re-engineered. It is an original product of DARE. The reason why several Iraqi & Serbian MiG-29s were lost to BVRAAMs was because the Iraqi & Serbian pilots were denied (by EW) the usage of ground-controlled intercept cues, & also because the aircrew was not proficient in air combat tactics. MiG-29UPG won’t have IR/UV-based MAWS, but will have RWR-based MAWS, while the Mirage 2000 UPG will have a comprehensive MAWS suite just like the Spectra suite that of the Rafale. No active towed-decoys are in service with the IAF as yet, and only the Russians & Cassidian of Germany have so far offered such towed-decoys for the Super Su-30MKI upgrade programme.

To Anon@11.22AM: The WS-10B is presently flight-qualified only on the J-11B & not on the J-10/FC-20. Consequently, if AL-31FNs are not destined for the FC-20s, then this means that the PAF will not receive its FC-20s anytime this decade.

To Anon@12.02PM: In my view, 4 ATGMs will be more than enough for the ‘Rudra’ helicopter-gunship, although 8 will be preferable. If imported ATGMs are acquired, then carrying 8 ATGMs will be possible. But in case of the 50kg HELINA (which is clearly overweight, thanks to its four aft-mounted thruster rockets), the ‘Rudra’ won’t be able to carry more than 4 such ATGMs. There’s no need for the ‘Rudra’ to have a nose-mounted X-band or millimeter-wave radar PROVIDED the AAC insists on acquiring a fleet of ‘Rudras’ armed with only 2 or 4 Mistral ATAMs for self-protection & housing belly-mounted X-band multi-mode battlespace surveillance radars like the ELM-2054. Such a helicopter will be a tremendous force-multiplier and will be extremely cost-effective, instead of equipping every ‘Rudra’ helicopter-gunship with a Pico-SAR-type radar. In addition, the DRDO ought to have by now developed low-cost PGMs like laser-guided 7km-range versions of the 80mm S-8 rocket (on 20-round B-8M-1 launcher) or
122mm S-13 rocket (on 5-round B-13L launcher), similar to what has been done by Lockheed Martin (70mm DAGR missile) & BAE Systems (70mm APKWS with DASALS kit).

To Anon@12.32PM: There are no airborne towed-decoys of any type in service with the IAF.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To RAD: I had already explained yesterday the futility of developing long-range BVRAAMs. Such missiles confer no decisive edge in dissimilar air combat. Had this been not the case, then by now the likes of Raytheon & Vympel JSC would already have mass-produced such AAMs.

To FARIS: Dr Gerry Bull being a one-man show was ONLY a designer with expertise on ballistics. He had no ability to engage in production-engineering or prototype development, all of which reqd the usage of an established armaments manufacturer. NORICUM of Austria could never have dealt with ARMSCOR during the Apartheid-era due to the UN-imposed embargo. Therefore, Spain’s Santa Barbara was the only option left since in the 1970s Spain was ruled by a fascist dictatorship that had no qualms about engaging in military-industrial cooperation with SA. The Ruskies are developing sa top-attack version of the Kornet-E, & not Konkurs which is no longer in usage & has been succeeded by the Konkurs-M. Anza Mk1 was NOT a copy, but a licence-assembled QW-1. The same goes for Anza Mk2 & QW-2. Pakistan never had the need to secretly obtain any FIM-92 Stingers from anyone, since the US had sold Pakistan 500 Stingers in the 1980s under the FMS programme. The Malaysian Army acquired the Anza Mk1 MANPADS.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To FARIS: Do read this from page 26: http://indianairforce.nic.in/fsmagazines/Jun12.pdf

To Anon@9.31AM: Of course they’re installed on the Arjun Mk2, bit what’s being field-tested & evaluated at the moment is not the Arjun Mk2, but the Arjun Mk1A. The Mk2 won’t emerge until 2014 since the powerpack qualification process takes a long time. Only after this has been completed will mobility user-trials commence.

To Anon@10.10PM: When will the IAF’s Su-30MKI Level-4 MRO facility (Base Repair Depot) come-up? Your guess is as good as mine. The AL-31FPs are already being shipped to UFA for servicing. After a turbofan’s TTSL expires, it means that engine has to be junked, sold off as ‘raddi‘, unless the OEM can come up with modular replacements aimed at replacing those modules whose service-lives have already expired and cannot be relifed. In this area, the Ruskies are comparatively new in the game, whereas the West had embraced the concept of modular enhancements in the late 1980s.

To Mr.RA 13: Tejas Mk1 being used against ‘Paki front’? How can that be, especially since our illustrious senior citizen PM Dr MMS & his UPA-2 compatriots have yet to publicly retract his 2005 statement about the peace process between India & Pakistan being ‘irreversible”!!! It is indeed possible that Rabinder Singh/Ravi Mohan could have been a double-agent, but he is now of no use to either the US or India, hence his shabby & wretched subsistence in Florida, which is devoid of any significant presence of PIOs.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To KSK: Financially, no one from Europe could have matched the US offer, that’s a given. The EJ-200 may be of more recent vintage, but it is not as mature as that of the F414. Yes, the Europeans are indeed desperate to sell military hardware off-the-shelf, but not ToT concerning production know-how of new-generation turbofans. No none in the world would part with such knowledge/expertise. At the end of the day, there’s no imported substitute for conducting one’s own fundamental R & D in such critical areas. That’s the reason why those Indian OEMs entrusted with indigenisation of select components for the Scorpene SSKs are now facing very high rejection rates for the trial batch of components that have already been fabricated. ALL these components have FAILED their quality compliance tests, thanks to deficient investments made by these India-based OEMs in their respective production-engineering & QC/QA processes. And thanks to the strong Euro & depreciating Rupee, these OEMs are presently in no position to make the urgently required investments in order to overcome the deficiencies. The nett result: delayed delivery schedules for the six Scorpene SSKs, since in all probability the orders for components will now have to be placed with French or Spanish OEMs, all leading to further cost escalation of the entire Scorpene SSK procurement effort.

To SK: The US, Russia, France, Germany & Israel are all involved in the arena of dual-band radars & integrated masts. For the Indian Navy, though, such enhancements will be introduced only in the following decade.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

Interesting reads:
http://blogs.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Swaminomics/entry/china-beats-india-again-this-time-in-corruption
&
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Government-may-clear-all-weather-tunnel-to-Leh-today/articleshow/14971889.cms

Heberian said...

Thank you, Prasun!

Anonymous said...

Hey Prasun, this link says that the F414 Enhanced Performance Engine would be the baseline for the ge's offer to India.
http://www.aviationweek.com/Blogs.aspx?plckBlogId=Blog:27ec4a53-dcc8-42d0-bd3a-01329aef79a7&plckPostId=Blog:27ec4a53-dcc8-42d0-bd3a-01329aef79a7Post:98ca66c5-16cc-44a7-bfa3-45d1436e826f
So will it still be rated at 98 kn?

rad said...

HI prasun

We hear that the f414 deal is about to be signed . Is There a TOT or is it just a sale?. will USA part with the hitech ?I think not , then how are we going about it. The LCA MK2 is going to be stretched by a meter to accommodate all the new system and the wing is going to be improved as what we hear. Dont you think we will face the same problem of an underpowered ac with al this mod and weight increase?. Why is the LCA over weight in spite of the large portion of the structure made of composites , is it over designed or an unclean ac where the drag is more due to bad aerodynamic design.
Is there going to be another weapon station .

rad said...

It is published that the NAG missile seeker is imported , contrary to the rubbish that has been fed to the public that the NAG is all
indian . DRDO has been working on the missile for 20yrs + and still have not made the seeker ,is it incompetence . They claim to have made an RF seeker for the nag with a trial flight being made , is the seeker indian or are they trying to fool us again .There was talk of israel giving us the know how for IIR seekers and active RF seekers for missiles, what has happened to that .It beats me why some fool has exposed the defficiency of the nag missile in its current form of being unable to acquire targets in the hot desert temp, will any honble intitution or person in any country do that .? wgy are we not getting the TOT from france for the nag seeker ?

Anonymous said...

Hi Prasun, I want to know whether the various internal jammers and El-8222 and various ECM pods can successfully jam the active radar seekers of R-77,AIM-120 and semi-active seekers of AIM-7 ,R-27? Suppose a MiG-29, Su-30 is flying at 30000ft AGL. Suddenly it is locked up by a hostile AEW&C or MMR, and a R-77 is launched. Suppose the pilot doesnt take any evasive manuvers when he is being locked up. The plane is well in the AAM's kill zone. Now can the jammers jam the missiles seeker and make it to go off course and miss its target. And has the IAF counducted such tests.

The internal jammers of the Iraqui MiG-29 should have played their parts and jammes the AIM-7 before it has reached its target. Why hasnt such taken place?

The MiG-29 UPG will feature a RWR MAWS. So will it able to provide warning and accurate bearing , heading of IR guide threats be it long range BVRAAM and WVRAAM. IR/UV MAWS are capable of providing info on all types of AAM. Will the RWR MAWS be the same? Will it be upto the job? When they are fitting such a high tech AESA jammers on the MiG, why is the vital all critical MAWS missing. Its the difference between life and death.

F said...

Prasun,

Thanks for the link. A rifle stucked to a wing??!! By right isn't the RMAF or the army liable for the damages? Also the writer mentioned a tripod fixed to the gun. What tripod? The paras only jump with assault rifles.

What are your thought about Igwe being ordred for the AV8? Don't you think that an Adnan AT variant should be created instead of the AV8? If the intention is to use the AV-8 as a tank destroyer, what about its lack of armour protection and doesn't the AV-8 have too high a profile to be used for hunting MBTs? I'm really surprised that 54 turrets will be fitted with Ingwe. Perhaps it was a last minute decesion to get 54 turrets because of the possibility that Leopard 2s will be based on the border?

Pawan Kumar said...

Sir
Would like to know your views on leh tunnel project in kashmir and other beneath the rohtang currently going on.

Anonymous said...

Hi Prasun, whats the status of the Barak JV.We are presently developing 2 distinct Barak :Barak-2 with a 70 km range for equipping Navy FFG & DDG and Bark-8 with 120 km range for the IAF & IA. When will the Barak-8 have its 1st test flight.When will it enter series production. Apart from the firm order of 400 something missiles wont the IAF order more? Will the IAF entrust the base defense only to Akash mk2? A handicap missile with only 40 km range? Will the IA order them in sizable quantities? Apart from the 3 Spyder SR regiments in IA service, are there any squadrons in IAF service?

Who will manufacture the Akash mk2,Barak-8? The BDL has its hands full and how can it hope to produce, overhaul so many missile types in just 3 plants?

Anonymous said...

When will the Tejas mk2 enter series production?How many hardpoints does it possess?What will be the annual production rate?
Will the maws onboard the Tejas be IR/UV based or only UV based according to BEL poster? When will the Sukhoi upgrade program start?Will the entire fleet be upgraded or only 50? How long will it take for the 1st 3 squadrons to complete overhaul and again become operational? Whats the production rate of the sukhois by HAL? How many are being imported from Russia per year. Whats the difference between Su-30mkii and the latest mk version that is being produced?

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Anon@10.30AM: Why are you assuming that selection of a turbofan’s latest model/variant for the Tejas Mk2 will automatically translate into a higher-thrust powerplant. Enhanced performance is not just about maximum thrust levels, but also about improved TBOs & MTBFs. Even though the turbofan can deliver higher thrust-levels than what is reqd, lesser desired thrust-levels can always be acquired based on what is the desired optimum figure, which in turn is derived after finalising the MTOW of the aircraft.

To Anon@12.01PM: I’ve already answered your first question earlier today. There’s no need to take any evasive manoeuvres since the aircraft’s RWR issues sequential warnings about target search, track & lock-on, following which the pilot activates the internal jammer. Therefore, the question of a pilot being taken by surprise doesn’t arise. The Iraqi MiG-29 pilots did not possess adequate skills & were not proficient in dissimilar air combat in an environment when they were unable to communicate with their GCS. MAWS is primarily a defensive tool for advance warning against ground-launched VSHORADS & SHORADS & that’s why there are more helicopters worldwide equipped with MAWS than combat aircraft. The IAF MiG-28UPGs are optimised for air superiority & will therefore not be committed to sorties that involve low-level flying over dense, in-depth SAM networks. Advance warning of inbound WVRAAMs can always be provided by the IRST sensor, rear-view mirrors mounted in the cockpit & well as by other friendly aircraft that are part of the formation. MAWS is therefore totally useless against WVRAAMs.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To FARIS: Not a rifle, but its bayonet. The RMAF made up by offering local MRO facilities & raw materials reqd for the patch-work. If the Paras jump only with assault rifles, in all probability they’ll get mowed down by the enemy in a cakewalk. Paras always jump with fully self-contained firepower for both direct & indirect fire-support for the contact battle. This includes RPGs (RPG-7 & C-90A), Carl Gustavs, LMGs, MMGs & 60mm light mortars. Regarding the Adnan AIFVs, they’re already equipped with Baktar Shikan ATGMs. Therefore, the AV-8s too need an ATGM. As for how these AV-8s will be employed, it is just like how the M-3 Bradleys are used together with M-1 Abrams MBTs. In Malaysia’s case, the ATGM-equipped AV-8s will be used along with PT-91Ms, following which the Malaysian Army will be able to raise its first Armoured Brigade. AS to how AIFVs are used along with MBTs & for what reason, watch this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kv9Adb3EuVE

To Pawan Kumar: What astonishes me most is why were such projects not initiated in the 1980s itself! Is it the norm that only if a member of the Gandhi family evinces interest in such a project will everyone concerned then swing into action to realise this project???? If that’s the case, then there are far more darker days ahead for India.

To Anon@6.02PM & 6.38PM: All those questions you’ve asked are unanswerable since there are too many variables involved, such as project costs increasing by a steep margin due to heightened inflation, lack of effective skilled human resources, etc. That’s why the Scorpene SSK delivery is once again in trouble, as is the construction schedule of INS Vikrant (IAC-1). Cochin Shipyard Ltd has overspent its prior allocation of MoD funds due to the high cost of buying raw materials & due to labour disputes involving greater salary demands, all due to unchecked inflation-levels prevailing in India over the past two years in a row.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To RAD: Of course, there will be ToT, but NOT for manufacturing, since the number of turbofans being ordered can never justify its licenced-manufacture. The ToT will involve the transfer of skills, expertise & infrastructure for undertaking all levels of MRO activities in-country. The 98kN thrust F414-GE-INS6 turbofan built by GE Aero Engines was selected ONLY AFTER the MTOW figure of the Tejas Mk2 was finalised. Consequently, the issue of an underpowered Tejas Mk2 does not arise at all. Even the Tejas Mk1 is NOT underpowered if its MTOW figure is reduced by arming it with small-diameter laser-guided PGMs like the AASM Hammer & MLGB, instead of 1,000lb LGBs. That’s why even the existing Tejas Mk1’s tandem-seat variant can be series-produced as a lead-in fighter-trainer (LIFT), for which there’s a crying need.
Regarding the Nag, the RF seeker is years away from maturity. Therefore, for the moment, the IR-FPA-based optronic seeker will have to do. No one in the world will ever transfer any kind of cutting-edge technologies to anyone, be it the French or the Israelis. In addition, the report by BROADSWORD is wrong in some aspects. For instance, it is not the DRDO’s Research Centre Imarat (RCI) that will develop the new tropicalised seeker, but the Dehra Dun-based IRDE. The most critical element of the IIR seeker is its FPA, which will be procured off-the-shelf from France’s Sofradir. That’s the maximum any foreign company can offer in terms of ToT. But what I find most hilarious is the DRDO’s argument that weight should not be an issue since the 40kg Nag Mk1 ATGM is carried on, and fired from, a vehicle, the NAMICA. Similarly, Dr Avinash Chander’s remark (“I don’t see why an extra 5kg should be an issue. If the Nag were a man-portable, shoulder-fired missile, weight would be crucial) is totally symptomatic of both the lack of interface between the weapons developer & the end-user, & the DRDO’s total lack of knowledge about the operational conditions in which such weapons will be employed. There are two fundamental issues which Dr Avinash Chander has overlooked. Firstly, the activation of the four rear-mounted thrusters of the Nag Mk1, especially at night, will easily alert the enemy about inbound ATGMs (in fact, no other contemporary ATGM has such thrusters). If these thrusters can be done away with, then there is a possibility of the Nag Mk2 emerging in future. Secondly, Dr Chander should be reminded that reloading of Nag Mk1s on to the NAMICA’s launcher is done manually, which under battlefield conditions is dangerous. Had the NAMICA been equipped with an autoloading mechanism, then weight would not have been an issue. Lastly, the Nag/NAMICA combination was never meant to be used in desert terrain, & will in all probability never be used, simply because the NAMICA cannot keep up with fast-moving MBTs & ICVs engaged in high-intensity manoeuvre warfare. Over desert terrain, the preferred partner of MBTs is still the BMP-2K ICV equip[ped with TISAS thermal imaging sights & armed with Konkurs-M ATGMs (which can easily neutralise T-80UD & Type 85IIIAPs), which in future will be joined by the event more potent & agile ‘Rudra’ helicopter-gunships. The NAMICA was therefore designed from the outset to operate in & around built-up areas like those prevailing in the plains of Punjab & Jammu, & hence the need arose for a raisable mast-mounted panoramic sight for target search/acquisition. Therefore, claims by anyone about the Nag Mk1 being unable to operate optimally over desert terrain are disingenuous & downright mischievous.

Anand said...

Hi Prasun,

Wat's the article in BRODSWORD about NAG missile being blind beyond 2.5K...is that true??

Regards,

Anand.

Anonymous said...

sir, i have a few questions..
1) Y do the IAF or MoD or the army has this give n take attitude..y do the the IAF needs to be give CSAR helos for them to abandon other helo..if there is any need for such an helo it should be provided to the concerned service irrespective of anything..?& how many such CSAR helos are required..how many combat aviation brigades is the army looking to form ?
2)since long i hv been reading..abt the need to develop a LIFT variant of LCA..but is something official yet..is the IAF HQ working on it..i mean is there any agenda like that in their books ?

Anonymous said...

chiems 34sir ,
u say that MBT & ICVs are an ideal formation for desert battles..
sir..then what does the infantry fight with..aren't ICVs meant for transporting & protecting infantry in battle..?
don't u think that the 359 infantry battalions of the indian army are utterly unprotected with such assets for an proper war..dont u think such infantry formations should be equipped with ICVs & AFVs for protections 7 increasing there firepower as well..atleast the one's that will be used in plains & deserts ?

Anonymous said...

Sir! why the DRDO dose not use the skills of engineers in the tri-service of the Indian armed force to develop new cutting age weapons and other equipment's because i think they should have much more knowledge by using imported equipment's and they will also know what are their requirements and how to refine their current systems? or they are not skilled enough and they know only NUT & BOLT skill.

Unknown said...

Prasun, have you heard anything regarding the final design of the IAC-2? What will be the size/deplacment? What will be its air group consist of? What configuration will it have- CATOBAR or STOBAR?

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To ANAND: Yes, it is 100% true. But, as I’ve explained above, the Nag Mk1 ATGM was never intended for use in the deserts. So I don’t know what the fuss is all about. Maybe the fuss is being created by those who are unaware of the IA’s plan to raise integral combat aviation brigades, starting with the induction of Rudra helicopter-gunships armed with ATGMs, which will act as both aerial scouts as well as the vanguard of the IA’s armoured manoeuvre warfare engagements over desert terrain.

To Anon@12.07AM: There’s always a give-n-take attitude everywhere, even among family-members & relatives. This is a no-escape area, especially since procurements have to be prioritised for receiving funding allocations. The IAF requires at least 40 CSAR helicopters com prising specially configured Mi-17V-5s. The IA plans to raise three combat aviation brigades, for starters. Right now, the IAF HQ is comatose about the need to evaluate the Tejas Mk1’s tandem-seater as a suitable LIFT.

To Anon@12.15AM: ICVs don’t just carry infantry personnel. They play a much bigger role than just acting as battle-taxis. The infantry on board ICVs are trained to wage combined-arms warfare, meaning they’re specially equipped with LAWs, AGLs and sometimes even manportable ATGMs to clear hostile dug-in emplacements that often serve as ambush points for advancing mechanised forces. Therefore, only these specially trained infantry personnel require ICVs, and not all infantry personnel of the Army. There are now more than 2,000 BMP-based ICVs with the Indian Army, which is more than enough.

To Anon@12.53AM: Of course, such highly skilled personnel are recruited by the private-sector in large numbers after they’ve retired from the armed services. The Navy’s engineers, for instance, played a big role in helping the DRDO develop the Shaurya/K-15 missile. And this in turn enabled the DRDO to develop the Agni-4/5 missiles. Similarly, a Delhi-based businessman with deep pockets called Moolchandani, who’s the local agent for the Astra family of special-mission business jets, recruited some high-ranking former officials of R & AW and its ARC in the mid-1990s in order to successfully sell such modified business jets for the ARC. This same chap is involved with the recent procurement of the Bombardier Aerospace-built Global 5000 & having it modified for ELINT/SIGINT operations. These chaps operate below the radar since they can’t reveal the exact reqmts at all times to everyone, & can be frequently seen visiting various aerospace expos abroad. That’s how I had met them in past expos & came to know of their modus operandi.

To UNKNOWN: This was extensively discussed & detailed in the past threads (in response to similar questions asked by SK), especially that in which I had uploaded the photo of the S-5 SSBN’s design.

Anonymous said...

sir even as of now nothing is known about pakfa's indian derivative fgfa...

almost everywhere there is a word that it will be 2 seat version of the pakfa..

i had read your comments in previous threads saying that fgfa will be hugely different from the pakfa..

SIR THERE IS A LOT OF CONFUSION ON THIS...THANKS TO LOCAL MEDIA THINGS GET WORSE EVERY TIME WE TRY TO GET ONTO THEIR CONTRADICTING ARTICLES !!

PLZZ SIR CLARIFY WHAT FGFA IS ALL ABOUT ?? DIFFERENCE BETWEN FGFA AND PAKFA AND STUFF RELATED TO IT...

dashu said...

The Navy’s engineers, for instance, played a big role in helping the DRDO develop the Shaurya/K-15 missile. And this in turn enabled the DRDO to develop the Agni-4/5 missiles. -- nice to know this

F said...

Prasun, for displays like the one held for LIMA, 10th Brigade paras only jump with their AUGs and they never jump with bayonets fitted to their rifles. And nothing they jump with has tripods or bipods extended, which is why I found the writer's mention of a bayonet and tripod very puzzling.

Would you agree that given the levels of armour protection on Western and Israeli MBTs, the best chance insurgents have of actually destroying these MBTs and killing their crews, is by IEDs, comprising artillery shells, that are detonated below the MBT? Experience in Iraq and Lebanon has shown that despite multiple hits by ATGWs, that will cause massive damage, very few MBTs were actually knocked out, which of course would not have been the case if Russian designed MBTs were employed? They were actually very few M1s, Challengers and Merkavas destroyed in Iraq and the Lebanon, unlike in Chechnya and Georgia, which vindicates the use of higher baseline protection levels by Western and Isreali designers.

Also, why is an ATGW variant of the AV-8 needed, when that role can be performed by accompanied infantry armed with stuff like Javelin or Bill? The AV-8 has a very high profile and in the enviroment it will operate in, most engagements will be at close to medium range. The problem with the Bahktar Shikan is its lack of penetration [we didn't get tha tandem warhead version] and the pedestal mount in which the operator is very vulnerable to small arms fire. The only reason we bought Bakthar Shikan, Anza and RPG-7s was because Pakistan owed us for unpaid palm oil. It was for the same reason that in 2002, they offred us the Al Khalid.

Ajay said...

I have to ask after reading this article, both Gripen NG and Tejas mk2 will come out at the same time and will be a cheap aircraft. Which one do you think is a better aircraft ? Like for eg : Engine is almost same and from the look of it, radar will also be the same Gripen Vixen 500e and Tejas Vixen 850e. Cockpit and EW will of tejas will no doubt be better.

Anonymous said...

IRST is also also the same in both aircraft, Skyward G in Gripen NG and Skyward in Tejas (any difference ?)

Anonymous said...

Whats your opinion on the Type 216 submarine? Would the Indian navy be interested in it.

Anonymous said...

HI Prasun
I thought the hawk 132 was a lift trainer other than anything else. would not he cost of a lift LCA be much more than a LCA Lift. What is the status of the ASTRA missile every thing seems quite on the front , may be they hit a road block? its 10 years since they started. you have mentioned that the selex aesa radar , irst , elbit cockpit are going aboard the LCA mk2. I think it will be nightmare for the integration guys and further integrating weapons that may be chosen is another game. will the US gives us the codes for the amraam if selected ? doubtful.
IN your previous reply you said that long range AAMs were not effective for various reasons, but then why is EADS going in for the ramjet meteor missile with nearly 150 km range as they hint. The chinese are also actively involved in a ramjet missile , please explain.
You were commenting on the nag thrusters on launch , apart from being visible the rocket flame is deffinately going to fall on the near by weapons during launch , rockets or other missiles.

rad said...

correction i was comparing the cost of the hawk lift to the LCA lift, sorry

Anonymous said...

Hi Prasun,
u said there is a greater requirement for MAWS in ground hugging aircraft such as helicopters and low flying jets, then why are MAWS absent on Mi-17,Dhruv and Mi-25,35?Most of them is also devoid of DIRCM.Why does the MiG-27 which will fly most missions over low terrain and in SAM infested evironment lacks a MAWS and IR jammer?

Does the EL-8222 makes use of DRFM , deceptive jamming? Are the Remora and Barem ECM pods for the Mirage 2000 are the same?

Anonymous said...

Hi Prasun,

If people like these Moolchandanis are setting up deals does it means that corrupt practices were involved in procurement of other weapons as well? Why did companies like Reinmetall , IAI get banned for bribing ?

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Anon@8.34AM: The only major external difference between the PAK-FA & FGFA will be the latter’s tandem-seat cockpit area. The rest of the differences will all be internal, primarily in the areas of mission sensors, avionics, integrated defensive aids suite, on-board oxygen generation system & the jet-fuel starter, all these being of Indian origin.

To FARIS: Your comment on 10 Bde (Para) suggests that you haven’t paid due attention to the PDF file. The devil always lurks within the details & in this case you’ve missed the detail. The report clearly states that the accident took place THE NIGHT BEFORE. This means no one is even talking about the para-jumping event that took place two days before in the morning of the opening day of LIMA 2007. Therefore, the event being reported about is the para-jumping exercise which was conducted on Day-2 of the expo and that too at NIGHT. And that exercise was carried out by a fully-equipped Reserve Para Battalion of the Malaysian Army (composed of Askar Wataniyah personnel), and NOT 10 Bde (Para). Therefore, folks don’t get to see what types of kit/hardware is carried by a paratrooper during a training exercise, as opposed to a show-jump for public consumption. Faham?
Not just IEDs, but even coordinated LAW/RPG fire-assaults conducted over built-up areas & urban terrain against the flanks of an advancing MBT column can cause devastating damage. For instance, the MBTs can be disabled by targetting their engine compartments or tracks, thereby immobilising them. That’s when the MBTs & even AIFVs need to be equipped with appliqué urban survival kits & remotely-controlled turrets housing GMGs & AGLs.
If you would have seen the YouTube video I had recommended, you would have realised why an ATGW variant of the 8 x 8 AV-8 is needed, & what role can be performed by accompanied infantry armed with stuff like Javelin or Bill ATGMs? The answer lies is combined arms warfare tactics of mounted infantry forces. Yes, the AV-8 has a very high profile, but it will not be operating over flat land. Instead, it will be used over jungle terrain & plantations where the natural vegetation will offer enough cover for hiding such vehicles from hostile target acquisition sensors.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To AJAY: It’s premature to comment about which one—Gripen NG or Tejas Mk2—will be better, for both aircraft types are still under development. If the Tejas Mk2 is equipped with small-diameter PGMs, the new-generation glass cockpit & integrated defensive aids suite—all of which are available off-the-shelf even now, then the Tejas Mk2 will be able to hold out on its own even against M-MRCAs like the J-10/FC-20 and F-16 Block 52.

To RAD: The Hawk Mk132 is an AJT, not LIFT. Therefore, there is bound to be differences in procurement costs for the two different training aircraft, since a LIFT with greater capabilities & more MTOW will have higher direct operating costs. The only operational LIFTs in the real sense of the term are the upgraded T-38s of the USAF & Turkish Air Force. Astra Mk1 BVRAAM still has several R & D hurdles to overcome. Avionics integration is the very least of all problems, since all the work is done on an integration test-rig in a laboratory. The main hurdle to be overcome concerns the development of the flight-control logic for the digital fly-by-wire flight control system (as I had already explained above). The US never objected to sharing crypto-keys for the source-codes for any piece of hardware. What the US & everyone else has always said that while it was impossible to tamper with the embedded EW threat library, a separate file can be created for uploading the ‘object codes’ with the help of customised crypto-keys, & the periodically uploaded data will then automatically be merged with the data already existing within a EW threat library.
Regarding air combat missiles & their vulnerabilities, I was referring to present-generation BVRAAMs, and not LRAAMs like Meteor.

To Anon@10.34PM: Mi-17s & Dhruv Mk4s don’t require MAWS since they won’t be operating in the frontline. They’re employed for only rear-area logistics. Only a CSAR variant of the Mi-17V-5 will have MAWS & DIRCM. MAWS was not a mature product when the Mi-25s were upgraded & when the Mi-35Ps were acquired. Helicopters like the CH-47F Chinook now come with low-cost DIRCMs. The Rudra helicopter-gunship will have MAWS because it will always be operating in the enemy’s line-of-fire. MiG-27Ms can be fitted with MAWS if reqd, but the IAF has not yet specified it. No combat aircraft has IR jammers, only countermeasures dispensers, & the MiG-27UPG has it.

To Anon@10.52PM: Of course corrupt practices were/are/will continue to be involved in procurement of other weapons as well. For instance, is there an integrity pact/clause for every deal inked thus far with the MHA or the PM’s Cabinet Secretariat? Not to the best of my knowledge. And as to why do only some companies get blacklisted for bribing while others don’t, the answer is simple: DOUBLE STANDARDS. Do you think BEML will ever be blacklisted for all its wrongdoings? Of course not, because the corrupt senior management of BEML will then be forced to spill the beans and reveal the identities of all the involved wrong decision-makers since 1996, starting with the then Defence Ministers, then Defence Secretaries & the then Secretaries of Defence Production & Supplies. All in all, at least 12 high-profile personalities will then have to go to prison, and after this happens, several more skeletons will begin dropping out of the closet involving other DPSUs like BEL, HAL, HSL, CSL, etc. Which means at least another 40 or so former officials will have to face prison terms. Is all this necessary? In my personal view, yes, very much so. But will all this ever happen? Unlikely, if not impossible, for I choose to remain a perpetual pessimistic optimist.

Mr. Ra 13 said...

Your idea of Tejas as Lead-in fighter trainers (LIFT) shall gain more and more popularity and acceptability. This so because not only it is highly justified, but it will also reduce the unit price of the Tejas aircrafts.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Mr.RA 13: VMT. I hope the same holds true for my persistent lobbying for attack helicopters & helicopter-gunships for the IA's Army Aviation Corps.

Mr. Ra 13 said...

I have already thanked you for your identification & persistent lobbying for attack helicopters & helicopter-gunships for the IA's Army Aviation Corps. I again thank you for the same. I am also astonished as to why all others work within the box only for their basic+DA+etc.

Anand said...

Hi Prasun,

Is India contemplating another follow-on order for Project 1135.6 FFGs? Somethin called Krivak IV class.And is there a further delay in IAC-1? I mean what problems CSL is facing to meet the deadlines?

Regards,

Anand

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To ANAND: Not Krivak-4, but a Batch-3 of Project 1135.6 FFGs, comprising three vessels.