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PostPosted: 09 Aug 2014 15:33 
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PostPosted: 09 Aug 2014 17:10 
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http://www.ainonline.com/aviation-news/ain-defense-perspective/2014-03-13/dassault-agrees-rafale-workshare-india

Quote:
Dassault Agrees Rafale Workshare With India
AIN Defense Perspective » March 14, 2014

by Guillaume Lecompte-Boinet

| March 13, 2014, 10:22 AM |

Dassault Aviation has reached a firm agreement with India’s Hindustan Aeronautics (HAL) over workshare for the 126 Rafale fighters that the country has agreed to buy. The agreement was confirmed on Thursday at Dassault’s annual financial results press conference in Paris by CEO Eric Trappier. The agreement covers the general configuration of the aircraft, the technology transfers and the detailed workshare between the two partners and their subcontractors. Also, it clarifies the mechanism for handling warranties, said Trappier.

“It’s a major step before signing the final contract,” said Trappier, noting that this landmark could come in “the next weeks or months.” The contract is estimated to be worth between $10- and $15 billion, but that has not been confirmed by Dassault.

Out of the 126 Rafales, 18 will be built in France in the Dassault Aviation facilities. The next 106 fighters will be built in India with a stepped transfer of responsibilities. The technology transfers account for up to 50 percent of the value of the contract. Dassault estimates that it would take roughly three-and-a-half years to deliver the first Indian Rafale.

Trappier also reported that India is “not the sole country where we could sell Rafale.” Dassault has answered an RFI from Canada, a country that, according to the Dassault CEO, is studying canceling its F-35 JSF purchase because of the high cost of the Lockheed Martin fighter. Dassault is in preliminary talks with Canadian manufacturers so as to be ready to sign an industrial agreement if Canada decides to cancel its 65-aircraft F-35 purchase. “It’s challenging, but if Canada cancels, Rafale will be in the race for sure,” he said.

Dassault is cautious about other possible export markets for the Rafale. In the United Arab Emirates, talks on a 60-Rafale purchase are proceeding with a “new roadmap,” according to Trappier, who declined to comment further. Dassault Aviation has answered the RFI issued by Qatar. “We are confident because Qatar is an old partner for Dassault; it has 12 Mirage 2000-5s,” said Trappier, but he declined to comment on a possible purchase of the Rafale by Malaysia, except to note that Dassault has made a proposal based on the supply of 18 aircraft.

Last year, Dassault delivered 11 Rafales to French forces, and a similar number is scheduled for this year. Deliveries are now to the latest F3R standard, which includes the Thales AESA radar and the capacity to fire the Meteor missile, as certified by the DGA (Délégation Générale à l’Armement).

Regarding the Neuron UCAV demonstrator, Dassault has undertaken radar cross-section measurements “with success,” said Trappier, and made approximately 20 test flights, mainly in France. This year, another 20 test flights are scheduled to open up the flight envelope.


http://ibnlive.in.com/blogs/sauravjha/2976/65137/why-the-dassault-rafale-will-be-purchased-by-the-indian-air-force.html

Quote:
Why the Dassault Rafale will be purchased by the Indian Air Force

Friday , March 14, 2014 at 14 : 30

In 2011, the IAF managed to get the government to revise its sanctioned combat squadron strength upwards to 42 from the previous 39.5. This decision was taken in light of the need to factor in the rising presence of the Chinese Air force (CAF) in Tibet supported by the creation of new ground infrastructure as well as aerial refuelling while simultaneously continuing to maintain an advantage over the Pakistani Air force (PAF) along India's western flank.

Besides dealing with a two front operational scenario the IAF is also required to expand its presence in peninsular India as well as in the island territories in anticipation of a stability role in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR). Be that as it may, for the period spanning the twelfth plan (2012-17), the IAF says that the number of operational squadrons has 'stabilized' at 34. And the new sanctioned strength according to the IAF would be attained only during the 14th plan (2022- 2027).

But to reach that figure in a smooth manner while accounting for risks such as an unforeseen decline in operational reliability of legacy aircraft, the IAF's current transformation has to remain on course with proposed inductions in the 'light', 'medium' and 'heavy' categories occurring as planned. And if the higher figure of 55-60 squadrons that are apparently needed for India to completely dominate the IOR are considered then both the Medium Multirole Combat Aircraft (MMRCA) and Tejas programs need to be pursued more vigorously.

The IAF, it was revealed earlier this year, still flies up to 235 Mig 21s (it had 264 in 2013) including over a hundred with the Bison upgrade package. While there is no denying that this fighter is still quite capable when armed with jammers and upgraded radar in the point defence role, it is after all long in the tooth now. Now on account of the delays in finalizing the MMRCA contract some Mig-21s are likely to labour on till 2019 instead of the earlier 2017 retirement date for the last planes still in frontline service at that point. A similar story may play out for the remaining 70-80 Mig-27s, half of which have been modernized, which were also scheduled for retirement by 2017.

Nevertheless the fact remains that a large proportion of 315 odd Mig-21s and Mig-27s currently in the IAF's order of battle are no longer going to be part of the active force structure of the IAF by 2020. Some of the numbers will be made up by some 80 odd domestically produced Su-30MKIs in the 'heavy' category that will join the force by 2017-18 in addition to the 180-190 already in service. Till that same period about 40 HAL Tejas Mk-Is in the 'light' category are also expected to be inducted into the force. But that still leaves the IAF in a situation wherein it will have to perhaps bring in another 150 new fighters by 2020 to compensate for scheduled retirements, assuming that a few squadrons of Mig-21 and Mig-27 upgraded versions labour on even beyond 2019.

Given that the Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft (FGFA) which is in the heavy category is likely to begin entering IAF service only towards the tail end of the 13th plan (2017-2022) other fighters will have to make up for a reduction in the Mig inventory. One obvious way would be to continue domestic production of the Su-30 MKI in the proposed Super 30 configuration featuring better radar and weapon versatility. But given HAL Ozhar's current performance this would likely yield another couple of squadrons by 2020. Although that could change with the right kind of governmental will.

The same could be said of the Hal Tejas programme. Even as this is written, the second phase of the Initial Operational Clearance (IOC-2) for the Tejas Mk-I is nearing completion with 40 Series production (SP) units on order by the IAF. Tejas MK-I development is now basically over and the fighter will receive final operation clearance (FOC) in 2014. Tejas MK-II development is progressing concurrently and is projected to be wrapped up by 2017-18. The IAF at the moment has a projected requirement of some 124 Mk-IIs. HAL is believed to have set up a slightly manpower heavy production line that can deliver 8-16 Tejas Mk-IIs annually from a new facility.

If we assume that Mk-II development timelines can be kept we are most likely to see another 30 plus Tejas Mk-II inducted into the IAF by 2020.

But clearly inductions beyond the heavy and light category are needed to make up for planned retirements. While it is often pointed out that the IAF is inducting much more capable and multi-role aircraft as replacements of legacy Mig series, the fact is that the IAF's tasking environment has also expanded in scope as have its adversaries' capabilities.

While the PAF's new inductions at the moment are not that impressive, consisting in the main of JF-17s and some more F-16s from West Asia with the acquiescence of the United States, it is difficult to say what the future will look like. This is because the Chinese have started fielding fourth generation fighter aircraft themselves and have two fifth generation programmes in the form of the J-20 and J-31 underway. Heading later into the decade J-10Bs which are upgraded versions of the J-10A and feature an airborne electronically scanned array (AESA) will find their way into the CAF and very likely into the PAF as well despite the purchase of old F-16s by the PAF.

Incidentally CAF J-10As and Su-30 MKKs already conduct routine patrols over Tibetan airspace. China's base infrastructure on the Tibetan plateau has also been modified to facilitate year round basing of a modest fighter force. New refuelling capability in the form of converted H-6U aircraft is also being fielded by the CAF.

While its posture at the moment isn't that threatening for the IAF, the CAF has the margins to increase deployments in Tibet. Moreover, if the J-20 development programme turns out to be successful, this fighter will also be deployed in the Tibetan theatre by 2020-2022.

If one adds the IAF's need to support the Indian Navy in its role as a net provider of security in the IOR, it is clear that leave alone one-for-one replacement of retiring strength, the IAF actually needs to augment numbers as evidenced by even the government's approval for raising its sanctioned strength in 2011. It is here that the IAF's projected requirements in the 'medium' category gain significance.

Assuming a continuing SU-30 MKI production line till 2020 and timely induction of Tejas Mk-II units, it is clear that the IAF will need to bring in at least another 70-80 odd new fighter aircraft by 2020 assuming at least one for one replacement of retiring Migs as outlined above. When the Dassault Rafale was finally selected as the IAF's choice for the MMRCA requirement in 2012, it was expected that this would be realized more or less smoothly, with 18 aircraft delivered off the shelf by 2014-15 and series production beginning at HAL subsequently.

However, things have not turned out as planned. It is clear that the delivery contract for the Dassault Rafale will not be signed in 2013-2014. Only a new government at the centre will do so now perhaps in 2014-15. The delays have both been on account of Dassault's issues with HAL and the depreciation of the rupee which has made this buy at least 20 percent more expensive than earlier projected. The UPA's election year freebie dissemination has also meant that various other expenditure heads are being curtailed to keep the fiscal deficit at manageable levels. Indeed the parliamentary standing committee on defence pointed out in April that the amount allocated to the IAF falls well short of what it needed to execute the MMRCA contract.

However, even if the MMRCA contract is finally signed in 2014-15 it would still give a fillip to the IAF's 42 squadron build-up by 2027, even if the numbers in the 13th plan are made up by better SU-30 MKI and Tejas Mk-2 production numbers. The Dassault Rafale actually is a good fit for the IAF's emerging force posture since it is known to be rather capable in the air to ground role as demonstrated by its performance in air campaign over Libya.

Now even as the IAF has to look carefully at its strategy for enhancing combat potential in this decade, it will certainly have to move forward on the MMRCA requirement to field a two front deterring force in the 2020s. While the IAF has invested heavily to upgrade 100 odd Mig-29s and Mirage 2000s which will keep them from obsolescence till the early 2030s and is strengthening its ground support fleet by fitting new engines in about 125 Jaguars, it has to move forward on its planned induction of the MMRCA to manage a smooth rise to a 42 squadron force by 2025 given the FGFA's production schedule.

The Dassault Rafale will help even out the induction process in terms of timing and availability since its basic development is complete and the issue is one of manufacturing it quickly enough here in India. However it must be said that any purchase of the Dassault Rafale must happen with full transfer of technology in key areas such as radars and propulsion. The Rafale is being brought in not just for combat potential but also to take India's aerospace sector to the next level through offset requirements especially given the massive costs involved. If the French stick to promised terms and conditions the option clause for 63 more aircraft will probably get exercised.

By the 2020s, with a much bigger economy and trading interests than now, India will look more closely at the 55-60 squadron force that the IAF was once envisaged to grow into. At such a time hot Tejas and MMRCA lines will certainly be an asset. While these fighters may lack 'all aspect' stealth their overall characteristics in an electronic support environment will keep them more than competitive against most enemy aircraft. It is perhaps time to bite the bullet on higher numbers for both with a view to properly exploiting economies of scale.


http://www.rediff.com/news/special/the-rafale-deal-and-why-it-makes-china-nervous/20130121.htm

Quote:
The Rafale deal and why it makes China nervous



The People's Daily, the Chinese Communist newspaper, says the sale of the Rafale fighter plane 'encourages, excites and spurs India's appetite and ambition to become a great military power while intensifying its aggressive and expansionist tendencies, which poses a serious threat to peace and stability in Asia.'

Does India have a choice, considering the People's Liberation Army's frantic speed of development, wonders Claude Arpi.

There were six in contention; four were dropped, and one became the Chosen One: The Rafale.

In French, 'Rafale' poetically means a 'sudden gust of wind.'

It was one of the six fighter aircraft in competition for the Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft, MMRCA, when the Indian Air Force wanted to acquire 126 polyvalent fighter planes.

In April 2011, the IAF shortlisted two birds -- the Rafale produced by Dassault Aviation and the Eurofighter (known in Europe as 'Typhoon') from EADS, the European consortium.

It was a big deal worth $12 billion. You can imagine the stakes, especially for Dassault which a few months earlier, was unsuccessful in exporting its flagship plane to Brazil and the Emirates.

Finally on January 31, 2012, the IAF announced that the Rafale was the chosen one.

The 'deal of the century' was that 18 Rafales would be supplied in fly-away condition by Dassault to the IAF by 2015 (or three years after the signature of the contract) and the remaining 108 pieces would be manufactured in India under a transfer of technology agreement.

The concurrent company did not let go easily and a lot of lobbying started. The British prime minister wanted Delhi to explain the reasons of favouring the French. 'The Typhoon is a superb aircraft, far better than the Rafale,' David Cameron said, adding: 'Of course, I will do everything I can --- as I have already -- to encourage the Indians to look at the Typhoon, because I think it is such a good aircraft.'

Interestingly, the Chinese were also unhappy with the selection of the Rafale by the IAF, but for other reasons.

An article published in The People's Daily (French edition only) argued that India and France were supposed to be non-violent countries, how could they ink such a deal?

The Chinese Communist Party newspaper affirmed: 'During the twentieth century in France there was a great writer called Romain Roland (1866-1944), the Nobel Laureate for Literature, who was strongly opposed to war. In India, there has been an illustrious politician named Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi (1869-1948) who was a pacifist leader, known worldwide for his fights against violence.'

'At present, their homelands are engaged in a sinister and repulsive arms race, which shakes and profoundly changes the international scene. If by chance these two great and illustrious men were still alive, what would they feel about this selfish and pernicious transaction and what opinion would they give in this matter?'

Is it not amusing that the Chinese Communist Party's mouthpiece today quotes Gandhi in connection with the Rafale deal?

The People's Daily article also says the sale of the Rafale 'encourages, excites and spurs India's appetite and ambition to become a great military power while intensifying its aggressive and expansionist tendencies, which poses a serious threat to peace and stability in Asia.'

Well, does India have a choice, considering the frantic speed of development of the PLA (People's Liberation Army), PLAAF (Chinese Air Force) and PLAN (Navy)?

A few months later, an Indian MP alleged that there had been 'manipulation in the evaluation process'.

This eventually delayed the process as an independent investigation had to be conducted; it finally concluded that the evaluation was conducted according to the RFP (Request for Proposal) terms and defence procurement procedures. The intricate negotiations thus lost several months.

Once the hurdle created by the MP was removed, it was reported that in September, while in Bangalore, Air Chief Marshal N A K Browne stated that the process continued: 'The negotiations are absolutely on. We hope that at least this financial year, we should be able to finish the negotiations and finalise the deal... It is a very complex project, as we are discussing various areas like transfer of technology, the offset clause, what Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd will do and the cost as well.'

Dassault had some doubts about HAL's capacity to produce 108 aircraft; probably with reason, looking at the fate of the Tejas project which has taken more than 30 years to take off.

On November 6, Rakesh Sood, the Indian ambassador in France, told the Indian Journalists Association at India House in London that the contract would soon be concluded. 'The Rafale deal is in the final stages and hopefully, it should be concluded in the next 3 to 4 months.'

The negotiation, Sood added, was a hugely complex exercise. 'Along with that a pretty stringent clause has been put for transfer of technology, (there is an) offset clause, and Dassault Aviation has accepted them.'

At that time, it was probably thought that the signature of the deal could be synchronised with French President Francois Hollande's visit to India. Though Sood had certainly not read the French edition of The People's Daily, he spoke of France's 'long interest in Indian civilisation', adding 'recently a (French) lady had produced a nine volume Ramayana in French... Indian music, yoga and films are quite popular in France.'

Sood's conclusions about the civilisational closeness between India and France were not similar to Beijing's: India needed the Rafales. But it was not considering the cash crunch. The Indian economy was not doing as well as Montek Singh Ahluwalia, deputy chairman of India's Planning Commission, had announced, and the fiscal deficit had to be cut, Finance Minister P Chidambaram said.

Last May, Defence Minister A K Antony told Parliament that his ministry would seek a hike in the Rs 193,408 crore (Rs 193 trillion) defence outlay of the 2012-2013 budget as only a budget increase could take care of the threat of the China-Pakistan military nexus. Antony spoke of 'new ground realities' and the 'changing security scenario'.

But with the changing scenario, the Indian defence ministry announced it had to prioritise its expenditure for the remaining months of the financial year. The ministry decided to focus on purchases that would impact on the armed forces' operational preparedness.

For example, the ministry planned to speed up infrastructure development in Arunachal Pradesh, buy ammunition to end shortages and acquire high-value assets, from aircraft to warships.

In December, the finance ministry announced that the armed forces's modernisation budget would be slashed by around Rs 10,000 crore (Rs 100 billion) in the forthcoming Budget.

The Rafale deal would have to wait for the next financial year, along with the artillery guns modernisation programme (Rs 20,000 crore/Rs 200 billion), and the creation of a new mountain corps to counter China (Rs 65,000 crore/Rs 650 billion).

In the plan expenditure, the government has already allotted Rs 55,000 crore (Rs 550 billion) for the MMRCA deal. But this was five years ago and cost escalations are bound to have crept in, which might prove to be a serious problem.

The Times of India commented: 'The move will lead to a major slowdown in the ongoing acquisition projects. It also makes it clear that the already much delayed $20 billion MMRCA project to acquire 126 fighters will not be inked anytime before March 31.'

Though the IAF had been promised an additional Rs 10,000 crore to cater for the first installment of Rafales, defence expert, Major General Mrinal Suman (retd) told The New Indian Express that the budgetary cuts would impact 'all acquisitions in the pipeline, as they become easy targets.'

A gloomy scenario

It is in these circumstances that a new development occurred -- Foreign Minister Salman Khurshid visited Paris last week. While many had doubts about the deal, Agence France Press reported that India could buy up to 189 Rafales instead of the 126.

Apparently, Khurshid raised the possibility of an additional 63 jets being added to the shopping list. A source told AFP: 'There is an option for procurement of an additional 63 aircraft subsequently for which a separate contract would need to be signed.'

The deal would then mean a staggering $18 billion contract, which would be a great boon for the French defence industry, but costly for India though Indian suppliers could secure work equivalent to 50 per cent of the total value with the clause currently under negotiations.

Khurshid seemed confident during his visit to Paris. 'We know good French wine takes time to mature and so do good contracts. The contract details are being worked out. A decision has already been taken, just wait a little for the cork to pop and you'll have some good wine to taste.'

His counterpart Laurent Fabius said, 'The final decision belongs to the Indian government in its sovereignty. But from what I am told by my colleague minister of India things are progressing well, and I can confirm the full support of the French government.'

Another issue which might slightly delay the deal is that the IAF requires two-seater jets and not the one-seater model presently produced by Dassault, but this should be solved in due time.

The People's Daily had said, 'The delirious and bustling feeling of excitement from the French side resembles the behavior of Fanjin, which had a fit of madness upon learning that he was successful in the three-year provincial tests (under the Ming and Qing dynasties).' It is not exactly the attitude of the French (and the Indian) authorities who are progressing slowly, but surely towards an agreement, which is very important for both countries.

One can however understand that the Chinese are nervous.

Major General Luo Yuan, a well-known Chinese expert on military issues, recently quoted the ancient Art of War: 'The best policy in war is to thwart the enemy's strategy; the second best is to disrupt his alliances through diplomatic means; the third best is to attack his army in the field; the worst policy of all is to attack walled cities,' his conclusion was that to thwart the enemy's strategy, deterrence is the key.

It is valid for India too; too much delay in the 'deal' won't be good.



http://www.defense-aerospace.com/article-view/feature/132379/why-rafale-won-in-india.html
Quote:
The Real Reasons for Rafale’s Indian Victory


(Source: defense-aerospace.com; published Feb. 1, 2012)


By Giovanni de Briganti



PARIS --- While many observers cite technology transfer, prices and performance as being major factors in India’s selection of the Rafale as its next-generation fighter, reality is very different even if these factors obviously did play a significant role.

In the same way that it is true that Rafale lost several competitions through no fault of its own, it must be recognized that its victory in India was also won, to a great extent, through no fault of its own. The real reason for its victory is political, and the long memory of Indian politicians was a major contributing factor.

This is not to say, however, that Rafale’s own impressive qualities had nothing to do with its selection. The Indian Air Force, which was extensively briefed by the French air force in the autumn, was particularly impressed by its operational performance during the Libyan bombing campaign and in Afghanistan. Rafale also has a naval variant which could be of future interest to India, given its plans to buy and build aircraft carriers, while the recent decision to upgrade India’s Mirage 2000H fighters will simplify the air force’s logistics chain, as these will share with Rafale many weapons and other equipment.

The Indian Air Force also is a satisfied user of long standing of French fighters, going back to the Dassault Ouragan in the 1950s. It was also particularly appreciative of the performance of its Mirages during the 1999 Kargil campaign against Pakistan, and of the support it then obtained from France. During that campaign, India obtained French clearance – and possibly more - to urgently adapt Israeli and Russian-supplied laser-guided bombs to the Mirages, which were thus able to successfully engage high-altitude targets that Indian MiG-23s and MiG-27s had been unable to reach.

Rafale was preferred because of lower costs, and the Indian air force's familiarity with French warplanes such as the Mirage, Bloomberg reported Feb. 1 quoting an Indian source who asked not be named. "Unit-wise, the French plane is much cheaper than the Eurofighter. Moreover, the Indian air force, which is well equipped with French fighters, is favouring the French," the source said.

To Indian officials, France’s steadfastness as a military ally contrasted strongly with that of the United States, which stopped F-16 deliveries to Pakistan (but kept the money) when it found it expedient to do so, and slowed or vetoed delivery of components for Light Combat Aircraft that India was developing. And, of course, the 1998 arms embargo, decreed by the US after India’s nuclear test in May of that year, left a very bad taste in Indian mouths. France, on the contrary, was the only Western nation not to impose sanctions on that occasion.

That, Indian sources say, was New Delhi’s real reason for eliminating Boeing and Lockheed Martin from the fighter competition; India has resolved, these sources say, to buy only second-line equipment from the U.S., such as transport (C-17, C-130J) or maritime patrol aircraft (P-8I). Vital weapons such as missiles and fighters, when they cannot be locally produced, will remain the preserve of France and Russia.

Political considerations were also a significant factor playing against Rafale’s final competitor, the Eurofighter Typhoon. As this aircraft is produced by a consortium of four nations, each with different foreign policies and different attitudes and tolerances to arms exports, Indian officials were a bit nervous about their ultimate reliability as a single supplier.

Germany is a long-standing Indian aviation partner, and a respected role model for Indian politicians, many of whom were educated there. German companies – essentially the former Messerschmitt-Boelkow-Blohm, now part of EADS - helped Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. develop both the LCA and the Advanced Light Helicopter, now called Dhruv. These links were the reason the Eurofighter bid was led by Germany’s Cassidian, and not BAE Systems, the former colonial power. But Germany had dithered over technology transfer for LCA, soft-pedaled on ALH tech transfer when German pacifists raised their eyebrows, and coughed when India almost went to war with Pakistan over Kargil and Kashmir, so in the final analysis it could not be considered a reliable supplier of major weapons.

Italy has never sold a major weapon to India, and so could bring neither influence nor reputation to support Eurofighter, while the third partner, Spain, is totally absent from the Indian military landscape.

This left BAE Systems as the best-known Eurofighter partner in India, and so by default as its ultimate public face. BAE in 2003 sold £1.5 billion’s worth of Hawk jet trainers to India, with a follow-on, £500 million order in 2010. However, its previous major sale to India was the Jaguar light attack aircraft in the 1970s. In fact, this aircraft was jointly developed by Britain and France on a 50/50 basis, and while it was license-produced by HAL it was never really successful as a fighter. Furthermore, France could claim as much benefit from its Indian career as BAE.

Taken together, the Eurofighter partner nations posed an even thornier problem: in case of war, German law prohibits deliveries of weapons and spares, Italian law and public opinions would demand an embargo, while Spanish legislation is murky. What would happen, Indian politicians must have wondered, if after buying the Eurofighter they went to war? Would spares and weapons be forthcoming, or would they be embargoed? The political risk was obviously too big to take.

Weapons also played a significant role in persuading India to opt for Rafale: not only is its weapons range mostly French-made, and thus not subject to a third-party embargo, but so are all of its sensors. Eurofighter, whose air-to-air missiles include the US-made AIM-120 Amraam and the German-led IRIS-T, and whose primary air-to-ground weapon is the US-made Paveway, was obviously at a competitive disadvantage in this respect.

Furthermore, the Rafale is nuclear-capable and will replace the Mirage 2000N in French service as the carrier of the newly-upgraded ASMP/A nuclear stand-off missile; it is also capable of firing the AM-39 Exocet missile, giving it an anti-ship capability that its competitors do not have. India is also interested in fitting its BrahMos supersonic missile to a wide range of its combat aircraft, and Rafale could apparently carry it.

Given that India had sworn to buy the cheapest compliant competitor, it would have been unable to justify picking the Rafale had this not been offered at the lower price. While official figures have not been released, and indeed may never be, initial reports from New Delhi claim that Rafale was offered at a unit price of $4-$5 million less than Eurofighter, which is a surprisingly large advantage given the French aircraft’s reputation of being high-priced.

The French offer also featured substantially lower costs of ownership, according to the same reports, thanks to lower fuel consumption and simpler maintenance requirements.

If true, these figures imply the French offer undercut Eurofighter by over $600 million, which is a large enough difference for one French insider to wonder whether Dassault Aviation will ever make any money on the contract.

But, even if it doesn’t, the Indian contract gives Rafale instant legitimacy, not only because of the thoroughness and transparency of the bidding process, but also because India is the only country to have fought four and a half major wars since 1948, and so knows something about air combat.

For Dassault, the Rafale program will now remain active, with a stabilized production line, for decades to come, and the company will have that much more time to find additional customers. Keeping its production line and supply chain humming at an economically-viable rate are sufficiently valuable achievements to push immediate profits into the sidelines. Supporting 126 – and possibly 206, if India buys an optional second batch – combat aircraft, and providing spares, fixes and upgrades over the next 40 years, will generate gigantic profits, and this more than justified lowering Dassault’s notoriously high profit margins.

In fact, as one industry official noted, "this is France's answer to 'Al Yamamah', but with twice as many aircraft," drawing a parallel with the UK's sale of Tornado fighters and related services to Saudi Arabia, which was instrumental in keeping BAE Systems prosperous throughout the 1980s and 1990s.

And, as French Defense Minister Gérard Longuet told reporters during an impromptu press conference in Parliament, France may soon find “that good news travels in formation,” implying that further, long-deferred contracts might soon be announced.


-------------------------------------------------

I also remember that ToIlet had reported that the price difference between Rafale and ef2k was huge amount of 10,000/- crore Rs.


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PostPosted: 09 Aug 2014 18:17 
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Joined: 06 Sep 2008 13:35
Posts: 526
That bird in the sky (Outlook India)

Quote:
"Since the Indian economy was booming, the political bosses had told the IAF top brass to “go for the best and not to worry about the cost”. Accordingly, it was decided that the IAF needed 126 MMRCA and tenders were sought through a ‘multi-vendor’ process. Six leading international companies were identified (see infographic). The process started around 2001 but it was only in ’07 that the six aircraft were put to an evaluation test, involving various exercises and tests, including flying under varying temperatures, in the Rajasthan desert as well as in the icy heights of Leh. “This was one of IAF’s biggest test evaluations, and that too simultaneously for six different aircraft,” says former air vice-chief (retd) Air Marshall Pranab K. Barb­ora. “Our boys did a commendable job and the testing procedure was above board. It received praise from all the participants,” says Barbora. According to him, after completing this lengthy process of evaluation, the experts agreed to shortlist Rafale as No. 1 and Eurofighter as No. 2. But though this part got over in 2012 and the government officially announced Rafael to be the “lead bidder”, final negotiations were still some way off."


Yet another article pointing the rafale as the winner of the technical evaluation ahead of the typhoon....


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PostPosted: 09 Aug 2014 19:20 
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Joined: 01 Jan 1970 05:30
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Location: Revive Sanskrit
Karma!!!



In 2050 India will still be a 3% nation, waiting for the next evaluation, arguing that the selection is technically superior, complaining that ToT is inadequate and willing to pay another trillion (billion will have no value then).


France should supply X number of rafale (they are coming for sure, one way or another. The IAF is hooked on them and the IAF needs more planes).


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PostPosted: 09 Aug 2014 20:58 
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One would have expected the BJP govt to have clarified the MMRCA issue for itself by now and taken decisive action. If nothing happens by September, it would be interesting to see if any IAF brass goes to USA with Modi.


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PostPosted: 09 Aug 2014 21:18 
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320.5 billion $ in kitty and still like misers we're crying no money - no money. Funny that too by people who found american C-17 at 10 billion cheap....... :rotfl:

Develop helicopter but buy american apaches, develop your own guns but buy m-777, develop your own tech but don't buy Rafale buy F-35s. Hmmm! what was it both A & B.


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PostPosted: 09 Aug 2014 21:32 
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I do not agree on the kitty part (it is not large enough to absorb such arguments)................... that is a totally different dynamics that would reflect on the defense purchases, but should not be part of such an argument.

The rest I totally agree. *But* then I place the blame of Indians - they did not *act* all these years. And, the Rafale *reaction* will only make matters worse in the longer run. France itself will move to Nueron (which is a test bed) and beyond and India will be stuck with an old generation technology looking for the next and in 30 years will be offered a Nueron (which was a test bed).

In my humble estimation (which could be on the lower side - granted) 126 Rafale, made in France, could come in at $7-8 billion (+another $5 billion for ammo, fine). The rest $10 billion or so needs to be pumped in into Indian MIC OR Indian society (infrastructure - which is really pathetic, population, agriculture, etc).

Bite that bullet real hard. IMHO, of course. Will be very difficult. Very, very ........ for sure. Plenty of failures. Many version of Kaveri will burn and be trashed. Many planes will fall out of the sky. Some brave souls will die.

C'est la vie.


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PostPosted: 09 Aug 2014 21:36 
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OK, let me put it this way:

France claims they will still have a functioning Rafale requirement in 2040 (or so).

I would like to know what would be *their* budget distribution between the Rafale and various other platforms.

India should have a similar if not the same distribution within her air wings.

So, let us assume France plans on providing 10% of their "budget" to the Rafale, India should not be more than 15% for the "Rafale".

__________________________

Just BTW, the "320.5 billion $ in kitty" ......................... that itself is insufficient to clean the rivers in India!!!! The cost for that itself should be at least around a trillion USD.


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PostPosted: 09 Aug 2014 22:42 
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This bit is really cool write up from IBN - reminds me of an old saying >> chane ke jhaad pe chadake ...

Quote:
By the 2020s, with a much bigger economy and trading interests than now, India will look more closely at the 55-60 squadron force that the IAF was once envisaged to grow into. At such a time hot Tejas and MMRCA lines will certainly be an asset. While these fighters may lack 'all aspect' stealth their overall characteristics in an electronic support environment will keep them more than competitive against most enemy aircraft. It is perhaps time to bite the bullet on higher numbers for both with a view to properly exploiting economies of scale.


Our economy has to be 2x current size by 2020 to have 55-60 squadron air force, scaling proportionately from our current 30 odd squadrons. That is a compound average growth rate of 12%, while we are barely achieving 5% from 2009~13. :roll: (http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/NY.GDP.MKTP.KD.ZG)


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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2014 00:27 
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Yes, lets spend the money that we don't have today because we are going to be super rich tomorrow.


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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2014 04:33 
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“The Rafale Deal Should Be Scrapped And Renegotiated”

(here we go again......) - Outlook Magazine | 18 August 2014 Pranay Sharma interviews Subramanian Swamy


Quote:
The BJP’s stormy petrel Subramanian Swamy has for long been publicly opposed to the $22 billion Rafale deal, to the point of even suggesting that there was more to the UPA government’s choice than met the eye. In February 2012, The Sunday Times of London quoted Swamy as saying he had initially been told the Eurofighter had won the deal to supply 126 fighter jets but that it all changed after the entry of a veteran French consultant, Bernard Baiocco, an ex-employee of the defence firm Thales, which contributes radar and electronic systems to Rafale. “Baiocco was here (in Delhi) and he went around, and everything changed after that,” Swamy had said, explaining the UPA’s sudden change of heart. With the Modi government poised to indicate its choice, Swamy spoke to Pranay Sharma.

Excerpts:

What do you think of the Rafale deal?

It stinks right through. The deal should be frozen or scrapped and negotiations for the MMRCA should begin afresh.

Why do you say this?

There are a number of reasons but foremost Rafale was finalised not through commercial negotiation; it was done by private conversations between Sonia Gandhi, her sisters and Carla Bruni, wife of then French president Nicolas Sarkozy.

Your other objections...

No country outside France has so far bought the Rafale. Some countries had shortlisted it, but rejected it later. We must find out why they did so. We must also know why it is so much more expensive than the other competitors. With the kind of money India has pledged to buy the planes, it can actually buy over the entire company that makes them. Moreover, there are also reports that it is trying to win the contract by giving a subcontract to an influential Indian industrialist. In addition, its performance in terms of fuel consumption etc was much higher and unimpressive during the recent Libyan campaign.

So what should be done about the Rafale deal?

I had written to the UPA defence minister A.K. Antony citing reports and the information on the Sonia Gandhi family’s link with Carla Bruni. Being an honorable man sensitive about his image and reputation, Antony had frozen negotiations with Rafale. I am not sure why Arun Jaitley decided to defreeze it.
The BJP’s in power.

Will you ask for Rafale deal to be scrapped?

We have a party meeting coming up in a few days. I will raise the issue not only with defence minister Jaitley but also with PM Narendra Modi. I’ll definitely bring it to their notice.


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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2014 06:56 
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^ :rotfl: :rotfl: What are fanboys gonna do now?


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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2014 06:58 
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I don't think Jaitley will pay much weight to these claims. Rafale deal should go through by next year.


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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2014 07:25 
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Rafale deal by itself should be a non mover - Forget Sonia and first family 'barista' connections. Making money of defense deals is a long tradition for them, so no surprise at all that we import everything practically - Big $ + no chance of any 'foreign' investigation coming through makes it a perfect way to loot the country. They were voted in to power so who is to blame really? - another thread and topic.

Hawks are everywhere - just look at US trying to sell us Javelin/Apache (UPA signed of cool 10 plus billion $ deals in a hurry with Boeing, talk about cashing in all before checking out).

IAF/MOD persisting with a 20 Billion $ acquisition after change of Govt. is something to ponder upon though - that too buying a 4.5 gen plane at 5th gen price. It should be a straight 'No, thank you' to the French. They should try selling this stinky cheese to someone else.


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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2014 09:54 
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NRao wrote:
OK, let me put it this way:

France claims they will still have a functioning Rafale requirement in 2040 (or so).


Whenever the same line was raised for F-18 during MMRCA comptetion that "would americans still have F-18 by 2040, when they are going for 2000+ F 35s?" it was you and other american platform supporters chiding the posters for raising such questions.

Now that F-18s have lost due to inferiority, you are throwing back same doubts on Rafale. What would french equivalent of f 35 is? They have Rafale and only Rafale. Even the ef2k nations are going to buy f-35 but french are the only ones who clearly aren't.

Both IAF and DRDO are insisting on ToT and manufacturing Rafale here 'cause they want it to be like Jaguars and not just M2k. The jaguars got manufactured here so we're doing the Darin upgrades here while for M2k we need to pay through our nose.


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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2014 10:06 
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Quote:
Whenever the same line was raised for F-18 during MMRCA comptetion that "would americans still have F-18 by 2040, when they are going for 2000+ F 35s?" it was you and other american platform supporters chiding the posters for raising such questions



Don't know about who said what about the program back then, but the bottom line is that the F-18 and the F-16 would be totally irrelevant in the 2040 timeframe, and most likely the rafale will as well. What would work in the favor of the rafale, and why I think the IAF was 100% right in choosing it over the American birds - is that France by 2040 will still have the rafale as its front line fighters. The military ambitions of the french may well shallow out and the aerospace interest will most likely shift towards the Unmanned side of the capability but given that the only tactical fighter in their possession is going to be the rafale, it would still mean that they'd try their level best to keep it somewhat relevant at the times. Upgrades would be in the pipeline though most likely at an outrageous price if the M2K deal is any indication. The US doctrine changes to rapidly introduce capability, As soon as the USN has itself a decent fleet of F-35C's they'll begin to write themselves a roadmap for the next 10, 20 or 30 years of multi role fighter operations with the F-35C and its future iterations. They have already begun running an AOA on the Super Hornet replacement with the FA-X program. Except the EA-18G growler which would most likely be the last stand off jammer for the USN (it won't be replaced with a similar setup) there would be no significant investment into the SH fleet. The aircraft is perfect for the USN, its cheap, multi role has modern technology and has almost all of its munitions integrated. No need to develop it into an F-22 when it does perfectly what the USN requires it to. For India that would not be the case as the IAF would most likely acquire the MRCA by 2017 at the earliest and would want to see decades of operation following that.

Quote:
Both IAF and DRDO are insisting on ToT and manufacturing Rafale here 'cause they want it to be like Jaguars and not just M2k. The jaguars got manufactured here so we're doing the Darin upgrades here while for M2k we need to pay through our nose


TOT is absolutely necessary as these are not mere defense acquisitions to fulfill a set capability but broader strategic investments in both foreign policy and national security. I have always wished for the TOT system to be de-linked from the aircraft itself and focus on broader areas where strategic technology insertion is required. Buy cheap and quick - BUY technology that helps in the long run but in focused areas where we cannot learn on our own without years being invested. Every year the MRCA deal is delayed compared to the original timeline the aircraft and its utility to the IAF is diminished. The system that is clearly broken is resulting in a hugely expensive 4.5th generation aircraft at 5th generation prices and in 5th generation timelines and this not due to the service but due to the overall acquisition process. Acquiring 5th generation capability will most likely result in a similar delay. The acquisition program needs fixing asap so that these sort of things do not happen in the future.


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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2014 11:03 
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Quote:
As per the Request for Proposal (RFP) for procurement of 126 Medium Multi Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA), 18 aircraft are sought to be procured in fly away condition and 108 aircraft are to be license manufactured in India. The process of negotiations with the L1 vendor, M/s Dassault Aviation of France for procurement of MMRCA is on.

Out of the six proposals received in response to the RFP for procurement of the MMRCA, the proposals of M/s Dassault Aviation for Rafale and M/s EADS, Germany for Eurofighter Typhoon were found compliant to the technical requirements. The proposal of M/s Dassault Aviation had the lowest cost.

The 18 direct fly away aircraft are expected to be delivered in three to four years from the signing of the contract. The remaining 108 license manufactured aircraft in India are expected to be delivered during the following seven years.

This information was given by Defence Minister Shri Arun Jaitley in a written reply to Shri Ram Charitra and Shri Y.V. Subba Reddy in Lok Sabha today.

http://pib.nic.in/newsite/pmreleases.aspx?mincode=33 Statement by RM on 8th Aug 2014
Everything regarding contract seems to me that it is going fine? or is that RM has not really estimated that 108 a/c can't be delivered in seven years(has it been possible any other company? ~15 a/c per year).
So Rafale is going to be ordered, regardless of what.


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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2014 12:04 
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Quote:
Whenever the same line was raised for F-18 during MMRCA comptetion that "would americans still have F-18 by 2040, when they are going for 2000+ F 35s?" it was you and other american platform supporters chiding the posters for raising such questions.


* Rafale: France cut Rafale production to some 5/6 planes a year (26 planes in 5 years??? IIRC?) .................. in 2013!!! What kind of support do you expect for this plane - from France - in 2040? (I am expecting an answer.)
* Rafale: I said it in 2006ish and in the recent past: France has been "supporting" the Rafale to keep it alive - for exports. France has really not much need for the techs Dassault/Thalle/etc have produced so far - nice to have, but not *needed now*
* Rafale: In 2040, the question I have (very seriously) will France be a front line nation? Will it have a UNSC seat? I do not think so.
* Rafale: AWST, within the past month, had a mention that the Taranis, in 2030, would make the EuroFighter (another that beat that F-18) obsolete. Taranis, IIRC, is a test bed, just BTW. Soooooooooooo..... where exactly do you think the Rafale stands with that nugget (Hint: France is developing the Neuron in cooperation with the Taranis team). My read; by 2030 Rafale is obsolete too .............. that is for France. And, India will be left to support Dassault/etc effort with the Neuron, etc and when india says what next: Nueron (which is a test bed).

* ToT: BS, pure BS, if India is expecting to fill gaps in her strategic needs with the MMRCA ToT. India has to go it alone - just the way she did in some other areas

* F-35 that you mention: I was blissfully unaware of it until about a year ago - that too because of Mr. Philip who started the Turkey thread
* F-18: Yes, I did vote for it, but because I thought then that it would win because of strategic compulsions. I was wrong

* On a limb: In 2040, not just the Rafale, but even the FGFA will be obsolete

Quote:
Both IAF and DRDO are insisting on ToT and manufacturing Rafale here 'cause they want it to be like Jaguars and not just M2k. The jaguars got manufactured here so we're doing the Darin upgrades here while for M2k we need to pay through our nose.


*That* thinking was fine when the MMRCA started to roll. Not any more - IMHO. With the info we now have on hand the Rafale - as a throw away plane (no MLU) - to up the squadron numbers for the IAF is just fine. But with ToT? I think not. The Darin example is OK. But to apply that to the rafale is plain wrong (IMHO) because of the quantum leap in techs that India will like face in 2030+. The obsolens(sp?) of the Rafale - in France - is written on the wall. The French are saying it without talking. AWST stated it in writing (fro the EuroFighter). So, if India wants to plunk Billions on this plane and its techs so be it. All the best.


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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2014 12:07 
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Quote:
So Rafale is going to be ordered, regardless of what.


I think so too.

It is too late to back out.

IAF is hell bent of building squadrons and rightly so.

There is no political leadership - who is going to take teh risk at this point in time?

And, no one is able to de-link the planes from the ToT. India is stuck as far as that is concerned.


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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2014 12:23 
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Quote:
TOT is absolutely necessary as these are not mere defense acquisitions to fulfill a set capability but broader strategic investments in both foreign policy and national security. I have always wished for the TOT system to be de-linked from the aircraft itself and focus on broader areas where strategic technology insertion is required. Buy cheap and quick - BUY technology that helps in the long run but in focused areas where we cannot learn on our own without years being invested.


* Has India ever been given ToT that fills any strategic gaps? Will India be ever given such technologies? Possibly the Arihant comes the closest, but even that is not bleeding edge stuff, or is it?

* What is the difference between the Chinese stealing technologies and India buying (assuming they are the very same)? My argument is that both nations are stuck in a time zone - what they either stole or paid for. That is it. Then they have to go back to the seller to get the next gen techs

* So, my famous question: What is "strategic investments"? Will another nation make an investment in your strategy? Or do they barter? and if they barter, what does India have to offer a nation like France?

check the dialogue that is going on between India and the US on ISIS. Or that between India and Israel. Or the budding one between India and Japan.

I just do not think France or the UK or Russia come anywhere close to these examples. On "strategic".


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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2014 13:43 
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Quote:
On a limb: In 2040, not just the Rafale, but even the FGFA will be obsolete


Sir, I have a different take on this :
- Will Rafale be relevant for France in 2040 does not matter . Is France upgrading Mirage any further now ? No. But India is still doing so since it considers an upgraded Mirage 2000 still relevant for IAF.

- Rafale being obsolete by 2040. Yes possible , who knows. Will Tejas be obsolete by 2040 then. Most definitely then (since Rafale is bsolete).
But IAF will be inducting Tejas even though at a lower cost but still in large numbers . Right ? And MK.2 not coming any early than > early 2020s. Why should we induct a fighter even though indigenous and low cost but high chance of being obsolete in 15 years ?

- Invest the money saved by cancelling Rafale on domestic MIC.
. with 50% offset clause , minimum $10 billion anyways get spent within the country.
. Tech development always take time. What does IAF do till then. Maintain low squadron strength or add numbers with less capable planes. Indigineous cryo development with a lots of docs and 7 cryo engine from Russia took 20 years and ISRO never suggested that the development could have been speeded up with more funds.
There is always a suggestion to increase R&D spending . Fine . But then What kind of money per year will improve the R&D capability in India for defence needs and lead to quick and tangible results for the country?
I don't think this comparison is relevant since US R&D in on a stronger base and there are lot of other projects with additional funding , but still DARPA's 2015 budget is probably around $3 billion.

http://www.darpa.mil/NewsEvents/Release ... 03/05.aspx

My understanding based on the recent IAF suggestion of going for Akash instead of joint SAM development with France is that if IAF was convinced then it would have definitely gone for more Su 30's and not keep stressing on Rafale.

Quote:
Has India ever been given ToT that fills any strategic gaps? Will India be ever given such technologies? Possibly the Arihant comes the closest, but even that is not bleeding edge stuff, or is it?


So we got TOT for nuke sub which is not bleeding edge stuff. Fine. May be right. But then Indian R&D cannot improve on this base to make a bleeding edge nuke sub in the very near future :!:
But then we can make a bleeding edge nuke sub without TOT support in much less time and cost :!: :!:


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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2014 18:15 
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NRao wrote:
Rafale: AWST, within the past month, had a mention that the Taranis, in 2030, would make the EuroFighter (another that beat that F-18) obsolete. Taranis, IIRC, is a test bed, just BTW. Soooooooooooo..... where exactly do you think the Rafale stands with that nugget (Hint: France is developing the Neuron in cooperation with the Taranis team). My read; by 2030 Rafale is obsolete too .............. that is for France. And, India will be left to support Dassault/etc effort with the Neuron, etc and when india says what next: Nueron (which is a test bed).


Taranis and Neuron will only be a replacement for larger aerospace projects that currently run the Rafale and Typhoon. They are not going to replace full on front line air combat fighters. At best these are continental range medium size strike aircraft. They are not multi-role air combat fighters. This point is often lost on reporters who paint a vision of the future which is not really the case. Both the Taranis and neuron are designed around a stealthy, penetrating strike mission.

Quote:
Will Tejas be obsolete by 2040 then. Most definitely then (since Rafale is bsolete).


Tejas will probably be less obsolete simply because the IAF and IN would have more control over it than the Rafale or any other western fighter. Aircraft obselence is a function of the direct work one is able to put into the aircraft to keep it relevant. The more you have to rely on the french for upgrades the more you are stuck on what you can accomplish simply due to the cost. At the moment for most nations operating it the F-16 is not obsolete, while the M2K fleets around the world are. The F-16 has AESA, a string of EW solutions, bigger engines a boatload of weapons cleared, IRST and what not. This is because the chief operators driving this change exercised control over the product to keep it relevant. The LCA will be in a similar fashion. Its IAF's fighter, IAF's code, IAF's integration machinery working to keep it relevant through out the evolving threat index.


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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2014 19:04 
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Quote:
Taranis and Neuron will only be a replacement for larger aerospace projects that currently run the Rafale and Typhoon. They are not going to replace full on front line air combat fighters. At best these are continental range medium size strike aircraft. They are not multi-role air combat fighters. This point is often lost on reporters who paint a vision of the future which is not really the case. Both the Taranis and neuron are designed around a stealthy, penetrating strike mission.


OK, fine. Let us play along .....................

Q/Comments:

* Does France have a next gen "multi-role" fighter planned out ........ road map? May be I am missing something and they have and I am not aware
* The UK/etc have farmed out that to the US in the form of the F-35 and will perhaps moving forward will rely on the US here on out (not complaining, just a data point/observation)

* Then, where exactly is France, as an example, going to use these "multi-role" fighters? Any threats out there?

* I just see no threats for the UK/France/Germany/etc. And, unless Russia embarks on regaining her lost glory, even she has no real threat for the mid-range future

Now let us move to "India". I just do not see a decline in threat for India. If at all it will only increase

So, around 2040, who will have a greater *need* for top notch technologies? France or India? And, who will be allocating dedicated, serious funds for this? France or India? (Let us keep the amount aside for the time being.) Who will be a lot mroe serious about this matter (assuming Indian politicians are realistic and have dropped CBM like thinking, etc)

* I just do not see France investing based on *needs* and my claim is that is the mode they have been in since around 10 years ago (not a knock on them, just a data point). France/Germany/the UK/perhaps even Russia are investing *only* so that their expertise is not lost

* It is nations like India/Israel/Philippines/japan/'Nam/Indonesia/Malaysia that have a real threat and will allocate funds based on *need*

Someone also made the argument that India could buy companies for the amount she is planning on spending on the Rafale. True?

What will happen to Rafale if India were not to buy it? What is the non-reporters version or thinking? (Like Sukhoi, it will have a chance to survive because of India is my thinking.)

India is actually spending that insane amount to buy some IP, I am sure. But, it will be old IP that will be of no use in 2030+ ............. because by then new IPs will have come out - *some/most funded by Indian payments*. I feel that India needs to bite the bullet and have those IPs originate from India. Let France build 100 Rafales and supply to the IAF. But ToT?

In 2040 India better be the third largest in ever category. Get that bullet out and bite it in 2015.


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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2014 19:08 
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One more point.

France was part of the European team to build a fighter and then for her own reasons decided to go it alone: thus came teh rafale. Right?

Why is France today teaming with the UK on the Nueron? Heck if France can support a Rafale in 2030+, France should be able to fund her own test bed stuff.

(Again, I am not against the rafale.)

BTW, to think of it, France should have partnered with India on this matter.


OK. Me am done on this matter. I think India will spend $40 billion, claim they got something out of it. Hope they do.


Last edited by NRao on 10 Aug 2014 19:16, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2014 19:15 
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Quote:
Does France have a next gen "multi-role" fighter planned out ........ road map?


NO

Quote:
The UK/etc have farmed out that to the US in the form of the F-35 and will perhaps moving forward will rely on the US here on out (not complaining, just a data point/observation)


UK has committed to the F-35B and have finally began actually doing some serious development (backed by funds) on adding some credibly to the Euro-figter Typhoon's multi role capability. It would be still some time before the typhoon becomes at par with older multi role aircraft such as the F-16 I or F-15K but its getting there. UK is too small a defense spender to develop NG by itself. They would have to collaborate, but since their entire development requirement is bult around expeditionary warfare and not defense of the homeland (UK) they can well choose to extend their current capability and offload the tough development to the US.

Quote:
* Then, where exactly is France, as an example, going to use these "multi-role" fighters? Any threats out there?


The Rafale for the foreseeable future. France isn't preparing to arm itself to be better protected along with its allies in the pacific to a looming chinese threat. They have little interest in that region. Their ambitions have been and will continue to be considerably watered down in the future. Russia, China and the US have the needs for NG and at a decent timeframe/timeline. US for the pacific, Russia for both sides and china for both sides as well. The IAF clearly has a need as well so is the reason why i say the LCA MKII and AMCA are the platforms that will provide deterrence to china..Rafale and FGFA will be stop gaps at best.

Quote:
Someone also made the argument that India could buy companies for the amount she is planning on spending on the Rafale. True?


Companies in aerospace are strategic assets. It was Subh Swamy who suggested that Dassult or thales could be procured for the MRCA price. Its a sensational claim without any teeth to it. He probably knows this too. He is a very bright man but a politician ;)

Quote:
France was part of the European team to build a fighter and then for her own reasons decided to go it alone: thus came teh rafale. Right?


France has been known to do that :), when requirements differed and workshare percentage shrunk france decided to walk its own path. Expect this to get harder and harder as the costs of NG systems skyrocket and the french defense spending and ambitions contract.


Last edited by brar_w on 10 Aug 2014 19:21, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2014 19:19 
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(Sorry, I had to address this, so hopefully my last post on this topic)

First of all, thanks.

Quote:
Rafale and FGFA will be stop gaps at best


:eek:

Some $70 billion for stop gap?

(India will have to dig out *all* that black money stored abroad for sure.)


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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2014 19:24 
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STOP gaps are only as cheap as the requirement and the threat index. If India were a nation in africa with virtually no air to air threat a stop gap fighter may not have required even a jet engine :)..Yet the reality is that the threat index is quite mature and multi-pronged with many qualitative enhancements in the pipeline and quantitative edge that will remain and possibly grow.


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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2014 20:51 
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Calling the Rafale a stopgap is a joke. We will probably be spending proportionally more on it than the the Americans are spending on the F 35. They are spending what, 300 billion something ie 50 to 60% of a single years defence budget on fighters which will make up 60 to 70% of their fighter fleet. And we will be spending proportional similar(20+ billion of 38 billion budget) amount to buy fighters that will only make up about 20% of the fleet.


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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2014 21:07 
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@brar_w,

You are pretty much repeating what I have posted (threat, etc). The issue is not spending that kind on money. Where do you think India should spend that kind of funds: within or outside India? Should India spend $30-40 billion in France and another $35 billion in Russia? Are there (better?) alternatives?

And, will the lower spending on the LCA II and AMCA produce a competitive product, in time and build a robust MIC?


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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2014 21:11 
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brar_w wrote:
The IAF clearly has a need as well so is the reason why i say the LCA MKII and AMCA are the platforms that will provide deterrence to china..Rafale and FGFA will be stop gaps at best.

You are hitting bullet right on the head, let them breathe Indian air for sometime.. :D ,

NRao saab the deal is set in such a way that, it will benefit India as much as for France, at the most there will be Indo-French Military Industrial Complex for a foreseeable future, which again fills up the gap what we have.

Ahh!! it is so tempting to post on this thread.

Between a got a link, making of Rafale,


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PostPosted: 10 Aug 2014 21:12 
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When I refer to the raffle as a stopgap, I do so only in the deterrence context. Come late 2020's China would have greatly upgraded their 4th Gen designs and would have a credible 4.5 generation aircraft in the SU35, *which they no doubt will clone . add to that large volume production of the two fifth generation aircrafts that would be required for china's US deterrence. 120 rafales in this context mean little from the deference point of view. A LARGE capable LCA mkii force that is constantly kept relevant through affordable and frequent upgrades and a cable 5 the generation multi role AMCA will provide the long term deterrence by feilding high capability that is affordable and that can be upgraded without any third party involvement. The rafale is exactly what the services want it to be that is a filler for the depleting iaf squadron strength. This is where the expectations have to be limited too, and this is what the aircraft needs to be looked at. Sure its quite reasonable to assume that the Rafale procurement will most likely begin in the 2018 or late 2017 timeframe and it would be close to the turn of the decade before we start churning them out in reasonable numbers. A mid 2020s delivery means that @ 200 flying hours per annum the RAFALE will be operational for around 2050-2060 timeframe. It would be totally irrelevant at that time and perhaps even more so than the Mig-21 is now given the future technologies that are being spoken off that will show up in the coming few years, few decades etc won't be as easy to retrofit as a new radar, or new ICP's or hanging newer weapons which by themselves would be expensive on the rafale given the M2K costs and the small number of the fleet. Though irrelevant it may be, the IAF would have moved towards UCAV's , AMCA and perhaps even strategic strike bombers. And that is why I am in favor of a modified/hybrid Technology transfer deal that is divorced from the product. I want more technology that would help in these programs than in producing rafale and its components.


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PostPosted: 11 Aug 2014 02:49 
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Answers in Maroon color:

NRao wrote:

* Rafale: France cut Rafale production to some 5/6 planes a year (26 planes in 5 years??? IIRC?) .................. in 2013!!! What kind of support do you expect for this plane - from France - in 2040? (I am expecting an answer.)
Same kind of support which jaguar is getting from britain and france, as it'll be our product by then as jaguar is. 'None' is my answer. We won't need it. The latest techs going in AMCA would be given in Rafale. Yes expect an answer but never give clear-cut answers yourself, just chide those who debate with unintelligble posts.

If we had manufactured M2k we won't be taking the expensive upgrade from them now, we'd do it ourselves like jaguar.


* Rafale: I said it in 2006ish and in the recent past: France has been "supporting" the Rafale to keep it alive - for exports. France has really not much need for the techs Dassault/Thalle/etc have produced so far - nice to have, but not *needed now*
Doesn't matter what France is doing, what matters is that 'what suits us', and it suits us fine to buy Rafale. What support US was going to give F-18 Mr. questioner by 2040? When it was replaced by F-35 completely. These queries didn't cross your mind at the time F-18 was not rejected was it? Or you want to do some ishaarebaazi that our great friend US would have done some super-duper upgrade for F-18, but bad cunning conniving french won't?

The french upgraded the M2ks for arabs as they paid, RDY-2 radar was created for arabs specially, even now arabs are ready to pay for rafale with more engine power and better radar. Just like they paid for F-16 (60) with AESA radar, your US AF doesn't have that upgraded one do they?

Anyway you've mainted for next 15-20 years are US-Bharat friendship time, no? So 25 years later Bharat will be seen by US as a competitor enemy like China who is getting ahead now. So any jet by 2040 has to be free of american influence, no other western jet fits better then french.


* Rafale: In 2040, the question I have (very seriously) will France be a front line nation? Will it have a UNSC seat? I do not think so.
Just a page back you accepted that LM was prevented by pentagon not to provide test methods guidance for naval Tejas. Maybe US will become the permanent member of 'UNIVERSAL PLANETS SECURITY COUNCIL' but its attitude, its denial and anti-Bharat policies will forever continue.

Doesn't matter, see you are changing your colors again, just the last pages of last thread you were expounding the virtues of F-35A + F-35B for IAF on technical grounds, now suddenly it becomes strategic. Please take it forward another step, so french will be kicked out of UNSC and US won't be better that we scrap our Airforce and give out this UNSC permanent seat holder US' AF contract of our security, simple why bother with having an AF.

The truth is that the moment we do next nuclear tests, whether pokharan underground or over porkiland it is US that will have most mirchi up their musharraf not french or russkies. This is the most defeatist thinking for my countrymen to have that your power UNSC permanent member country has to be our 100% supplier in everything.


* Rafale: AWST, within the past month, had a mention that the Taranis, in 2030, would make the EuroFighter (another that beat that F-18) obsolete. Taranis, IIRC, is a test bed, just BTW. Soooooooooooo..... where exactly do you think the Rafale stands with that nugget (Hint: France is developing the Neuron in cooperation with the Taranis team). My read; by 2030 Rafale is obsolete too .............. that is for France. And, India will be left to support Dassault/etc effort with the Neuron, etc and when india says what next: Nueron (which is a test bed).
So low you have fallen for supporting US, that a bomber which has no connection to MMRCA is to be brought it? Did you ever before teens lost in MRCA ever suggested that we should scrap MMRCA, AMCA and just go for tarani and neuron only. Why tarani and neuron only replace rafale and nothing in parallel replaces F-18 and F-35 (both A & B)? Pray educate.

Anyway what think of a man who was fighting here for F-18 to be chosen, hitting out at anybody who opposed F-18/16 for US sanctions, obsolete-ness etc. suddenly thinks that Rafale will be outdated. Tomorow NaMo goes US and choses F-18 and again this problem of obsolete-ness would go away! :roll:

Complete pathetic snakeoil arguments, it was not long that F-18/16 were in reckoning and you were not worried about unpiloted bombers replacing them, suddenly after rejection of inferior teens all this is coming up.


* ToT: BS, pure BS, if India is expecting to fill gaps in her strategic needs with the MMRCA ToT. India has to go it alone - just the way she did in some other areas.
Somebody mentioned how a part of tail for Tejas is made in france, probably many such advanced things which we import were listed and written as a condition for ToT which might cover some advanced composites and GaN to be used in AMCA, we don't know.

The best I guess is that IAF wants Rafale in 2040 like jaguar is today, getting upgrades in house.


* F-35 that you mention: I was blissfully unaware of it until about a year ago - that too because of Mr. Philip who started the Turkey thread
Please go somewhere educate yourself even more, like your mistaken support for F-18, you might find in couple of years that your support for turkey is even bigger mistake.

* F-18: Yes, I did vote for it, but because I thought then that it would win because of strategic compulsions. I was wrong.
What strategic compulsion sir? LM not allowed to help with test data/method for Tejas by Pentagon. GREAT US STRATEGIC SUPPORT.

US forbidding Israel from selling 2052 AESA radar for Tejas, GREAT US STRATEGIC SUPPORT


* On a limb: In 2040, not just the Rafale, but even the FGFA will be obsolete
Only F-35 un-obsoletable rest are just obsolete. OR the obsolete doesn't apply when you buy a 60s platform (F-18) from almighty UNSC permanent seatholder US
Quote:
Both IAF and DRDO are insisting on ToT and manufacturing Rafale here 'cause they want it to be like Jaguars and not just M2k. The jaguars got manufactured here so we're doing the Darin upgrades here while for M2k we need to pay through our nose.


*That* thinking was fine when the MMRCA started to roll. Not any more - IMHO. With the info we now have on hand the Rafale - as a throw away plane (no MLU) - to up the squadron numbers for the IAF is just fine. But with ToT? I think not. The Darin example is OK. But to apply that to the rafale is plain wrong (IMHO) because of the quantum leap in techs that India will like face in 2030+. The obsolens(sp?) of the Rafale - in France - is written on the wall. The French are saying it without talking. AWST stated it in writing (fro the EuroFighter). So, if India wants to plunk Billions on this plane and its techs so be it. All the best.

Amazing this worry about our Billions, I can't suppress a laugh, When billions are spent on 10 C-17s the posters worry about so much money at that time you fight tooth and nail in support of C-17s, where was your worry at that time about our billions, no i forget those billions were going strategically in your US' pocket, so Capt. Gilles, Sanku are were fools to worry about those billions. And wow the tunnel testing thingy US is giving was a great great thing for us, but shouldn't we develop it ourselves? Instead of wasting billions on 10 C-17s? ARE YOU GOING TO ACCEPT THAT TOO AS A MISTAKE? WAS SANKU RIGHT? WAS CAPT. GILLES RIGHT? WERE YOU WRONG TO SUPPORT C-17 THE SUPER EXPENSIVE DEAL?

As far as Rafale obsolescience is concerned, we bought Mig 21s in early 60s they're obsolete after 60 years, M2Ks are hardly obsolete, hell even Mig-29s are not obsolete. It is the cunning conniving MIC of US that propogates such things, that in 60s they started propogating that 'missiles have come so guns on jets are obsolete' after miserable failures of their missiles they ate the crow and brought back the gun, even now after 60 years the F-22s and F-35s are using guns.

I laugh at those who say manned fighter jets will soon be obsolete, its a US conspiracy, they should dump all their F-22s/f-35s and all others by 2025 then and move on to unmanned 100%

Oh I forgot you claim F-35 will not be obsolete in 2045 even.


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PostPosted: 11 Aug 2014 03:14 
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NRao wrote:
* Has India ever been given ToT that fills any strategic gaps? Will India be ever given such technologies? Possibly the Arihant comes the closest, but even that is not bleeding edge stuff, or is it?
Until seawolf tech is given to us, we might have to do with primitive Arihants. Is the wind tunnel testing for billions deal in C-17 going to be completely useless.

* What is the difference between the Chinese stealing technologies and India buying (assuming they are the very same)? My argument is that both nations are stuck in a time zone - what they either stole or paid for. That is it. Then they have to go back to the seller to get the next gen techs
I think after mastering the designing part of fighters, what Bharat needs is next gen composites, alloys and GaN foundaries once those come we'll create an AMCA light years ahead of anything in Asia and europe J-20 & PAK FA

* So, my famous question: What is "strategic investments"? Will another nation make an investment in your strategy? Or do they barter? and if they barter, what does India have to offer a nation like France?
Relevance, we give them relevance in the world, in future as EU consolidates closer to US the independent natured french will be isolated, they already are hence they had to create their own nuclear power, subs, ICBMs and warheads. They don't get along with britishers and germans so they parted ways in ef2k creation also and created a platform of their own, this shows spine.

check the dialogue that is going on between India and the US on ISIS. Or that between India and Israel. Or the budding one between India and Japan.
I suggest a check of reality, these dialogues mean zilch as they don't even allow 26/11 planner Rana to be given to us.

It means nothing when the pentagon refuses to permit LM advising us on test data for Tejas.

Meaningless these dialogues as US forbids Israel from giving us 2052 radar for Tejas, and while dialoguing with israel we vote against them in UN.


I just do not think France or the UK or Russia come anywhere close to these examples. On "strategic".

Yupp, just that we go on licking US musharraf no matter how many times they go on kicking us.


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PostPosted: 11 Aug 2014 03:16 
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An F-5 flying with an air force may not be obsolete in 2030 even. Similarly another air-force may have a qualitative superiority using HAWKS or textron scorpions over its threat. Its all relative and dependent on a threat index. Threat defines requirements and the quality of the quantity of enemy always forces the direction in which acquisition and development strategies are developed for the long term. Why has Russia moved away from the Mig-21 if it is not obsolete? Why has France moved away towards the Rafale? Why UK away from the Harrier? And why China is moving at full speed to get the full benefits of modernized flanker clones and developing not one but 2 fifth generation fighters in addition to producing at a very healthy rate flanker clones and acquiring the most lethal flanker derivative in the Su-35 directly from Russia?.. It should just develop more versions of the Mig-21! There are certain essential capabilities at every performance level that are dictated by a threat index and the resources at one's disposal to counter that threat.

Quote:
hell even Mig-29s are not obsolete


Again, which Mig-29 variant against what threat both from the IAD and the air-force of the opponent.

Quote:
I laugh at those who say manned fighter jets will soon be obsolete, its a US conspiracy, they should dump all their F-22s/f-35s and all others by 2025 then and move on to unmanned 100%


I think you need to reassess this thought. Each of the two US next generation designs unveiled through the RFI complied to in 2012 talk of a manned or at best an optionally maned aircraft. The dates associated with these projects are around 2032-2035. Its the Neuron and Taranis articles that are writing about these vehicles somehow magically transforming into fighter jets instead of continental range strike UCAV's and taking over the rafale and typhoon programs.


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PostPosted: 11 Aug 2014 04:01 
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abhik wrote:
Calling the Rafale a stopgap is a joke. We will probably be spending proportionally more on it than the the Americans are spending on the F 35. They are spending what, 300 billion something ie 50 to 60% of a single years defence budget on fighters which will make up 60 to 70% of their fighter fleet. And we will be spending proportional similar(20+ billion of 38 billion budget) amount to buy fighters that will only make up about 20% of the fleet.


It's a bad joke


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PostPosted: 11 Aug 2014 04:04 
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NRao wrote:
Quote:
Taranis and Neuron will only be a replacement for larger aerospace projects that currently run the Rafale and Typhoon. They are not going to replace full on front line air combat fighters. At best these are continental range medium size strike aircraft. They are not multi-role air combat fighters. This point is often lost on reporters who paint a vision of the future which is not really the case. Both the Taranis and neuron are designed around a stealthy, penetrating strike mission.


OK, fine. Let us play along .....................

Q/Comments:

* Does France have a next gen "multi-role" fighter planned out ........ road map? May be I am missing something and they have and I am not aware
Again round and round, that US F-18 is being replaced by jsf was it weak selling point in mrca, as US not use it by 2040, though dishonestly you had denied it.

That Rafale doesn't have any next jsf by its creater country at the most goes in its favour as french will be forced to use and upgrade it since unlike uk etc. they don't buy jsf or US platforms.


* The UK/etc have farmed out that to the US in the form of the F-35 and will perhaps moving forward will rely on the US here on out (not complaining, just a data point/observation)
That's good in a way by supporting france and buying Rafale later upgrading it we help another pillar to stand against UK-US-China nexus.

Imagine ef2k rotting and f-35s bought off the shelf the europe will lose it aviation skills fast, I love it. While french who supported us through Pokharan when US was injuring us, will stand strong amongst UK-germany. While scandinavians-UK-germany beat their head for not behaved themselves regarding Bharatvarsh.


* Then, where exactly is France, as an example, going to use these "multi-role" fighters? Any threats out there?
You've proved beyond doubt that PAK FA, Rafale are born obsolete while F-35 is unobsoletable so care to tell what threat is out there for US? Except Bharat!

* I just see no threats for the UK/France/Germany/etc. And, unless Russia embarks on regaining her lost glory, even she has no real threat for the mid-range future
Once we have what we want from them who cares about their threats, maybe we become a threat for them, attack and plunder UK-germany-scandinavia. :twisted:

Now let us move to "India". I just do not see a decline in threat for India. If at all it will only increase

So, around 2040, who will have a greater *need* for top notch technologies? France or India? And, who will be allocating dedicated, serious funds for this? France or India? (Let us keep the amount aside for the time being.) Who will be a lot mroe serious about this matter (assuming Indian politicians are realistic and have dropped CBM like thinking, etc)

Yeah just keep saving amount after amount and only spend for platforms like C-17 no matter how super-expensive they are, remember they're from 'Almighty-God-US', don't question 10 billion dollars for C-17s but question 20 billions for 126 Rafale out of which 50% is invested back here.

* I just do not see France investing based on *needs* and my claim is that is the mode they have been in since around 10 years ago (not a knock on them, just a data point). France/Germany/the UK/perhaps even Russia are investing *only* so that their expertise is not lost

Yes and US is only investing for the goodwill of Bharatvarsh, while all others are selfish jerks? Or you selectively raise these matters when US platforms are not being bought?

* It is nations like India/Israel/Philippines/japan/'Nam/Indonesia/Malaysia that have a real threat and will allocate funds based on *need*

As the MMRCA competition has proven that Rafale with ToT is the need for the hour.

Someone also made the argument that India could buy companies for the amount she is planning on spending on the Rafale. True?

Yes its not only subramanian swamy now, but even General V.K. Singh had said that before retiring.

What will happen to Rafale if India were not to buy it? What is the non-reporters version or thinking? (Like Sukhoi, it will have a chance to survive because of India is my thinking.)

What is now going to happen to F-16 and 18 now? Are they going to close the line? Isn't boeing obama desperate for NaMo to sign 6 more C-17s before they have to close the line.

Are those C-17 billions we paid are a waste too?

Should IAF buy your American C-27s too, are those million billion dollars not going to be waste, what happens to C-27 line if IAF doesn't buy?

Should IAF return C-17s and ask for refund? We should develp our own C-17s?


India is actually spending that insane amount to buy some IP, I am sure. But, it will be old IP that will be of no use in 2030+ ............. because by then new IPs will have come out - *some/most funded by Indian payments*. I feel that India needs to bite the bullet and have those IPs originate from India. Let France build 100 Rafales and supply to the IAF. But ToT?
LET ME EXPLAIN TO YOU VERY VERY SLOWLY THAT ToT DOES MATTER|

IF ToT DIDN'T MATTER THAN US OR OTHERS WON'T HAVE ANY PROBLEM WITH GIVING IT OUT WOULD THEY? JUST BUY OUR PLATFORMS AND WE GIVE YOU 100.5% ToT (WHILE :rotfl: INSIDE AS ToT IS IMPOSSIBLE) |

SO PLEASE US CAN SELL ONE F-35 TO CHINA AND ToT 101% AS IN REALITY ToT IS IMPOSSIBLE!


In 2040 India better be the third largest in ever category. Get that bullet out and bite it in 2015.

OH WAIT A MINUTE LET'S FIRST BUY APACHE, C-27 AND MORE P 8s TOO THEN WE BITE THE BULLET. YUP GOOD ADVICE GIVE BILLIONS TO US ONLY, DON'T BY C-295 ONLY C-27s, BUY JAVELINS WITH LIMITED LAUNCHERS, BUY M 777 THENN AFTER 100 BILLION GIVEN TO US. b i t e t h e b l o o d y BULLET!


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PostPosted: 11 Aug 2014 04:16 
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Quote:
OK, fine. Let us play along .....................


Play along where? and towards what? I have claimed that the rafale is the absolute right choice for the MRCA.


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PostPosted: 11 Aug 2014 04:55 
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Manned fighter a/c in their current form (1 one 1) are going to be obsolete. They will become/are becoming 'platforms' to captain/quarterback UAV swarms as one example.

We are all prone to linear thinking. Whatever works today will always work tomorrow in a better, bigger, longer ranged version. For example bigger and better battleships (Yamato)

In the 1950s it was mach speed. In the 1960s (Vietnam) it was all about rate of climb (check Robin Olds). 1970s-1980s high level high seed intercepts. 1990s onwards stealth.

It keeps evolving.

Dog-fighters are not in the future picture. Rafale is an expensive stand-in for the M2K which in turn was one for the MiGs. The $25-30bn it will suck up is a guarantee to leave us in the hole against the PRC.

LCA MK2 > AMCA is the only choice we have .Based on better serviceability/availability of the MKIs

+ bigger and better Arihants. All about can you afford the pain PRC if you cross red lines?

The truth is out here.

Oh! and I forgot there is probably someone lamprey-like, natgeo-wise, packing 3 chota-peg courage induced insight, waiting to encapsulate it as 'fortune cookie wisdom'. Small minds, small lives and small thoughts.

WE have to think asymmetrically.


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PostPosted: 11 Aug 2014 05:16 
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It all boils down to acquisition reform and fixing a broken system. Almost all of what you have mentioned is the sort of thinking that looks tough in the current acquisition environment. When a simple M2K class that is somehow an urgent needs requirement to fulfill diminishing squadron numbers takes so long to actually complete and then the real business begins to getting it, producing it and developing a credible capability through using it - the sort of thinking you are advocating is extremely tough to materialize.

We have indeed gone from one pole to another in aerospace defense. But a lot of that has been dictated by threat assessment, counter capability and the evolution of technology. Post WW2 there was a race to develop a credible S&T base among the major players. The first jet went up somewhere in the 1938-1940 timeframe (iirc) in Germany and around 2 decades from that the A-12 was flying at mach 3.2 with a design altitude clerked around 85,000 feet (some say close to 90K but never tested beyond 82-83)..Before the 30 year anniversary of the jet flight the YF12 was launching BVR missiles at mach 3.2 and 70+K altitude and in less than 8 years from that the SR (RS) went from London to New-york in less than 2 hours. The Mig-31 and other in service interceptors still hold the best supersonic cruise performance of any aircraft even today. A lot of the altitude and speed performance was made redundant by missile performance and political treaties. The threshold for speed and altitude would be small given how easy it would be to develop a missile program to counter that. Then came the sensor development and the need to hide from radar returns..Stealth was born and migrated to the systems we know today. Unmanned is just the next chapter..but so far even the biggest proponents have not been able to give unmanned the SA and the autonomy to replicate al manned tasks. Don't expect AI to be as advanced as to leave complex fighter decisions and C2C chains redundant. Manned fighters and man_in_the_loop aren't going anywhere anytime soon although Unmanned aircraft will provide the level of tactical flexibility never before seen. It'll penetrate some mission sets but not the ones that fighters and C2C assets do.


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PostPosted: 11 Aug 2014 05:30 
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The CNO of the USN,Adm.Greenert has been emphasising "payload centric" instead of "platform centric" warfare in recent times,as the development of LR PGMs has made even legacy aircraft relevant well beyond their intended lifespan. True,this requires an extensive array of surveillance assets,but in the Indian context,we have only two main threats,China and Pak. Though from time to time our strategists talk about the US's desire for global dominance,etc. and an Indian riposte, few envision that we will be drawn into a conflict with the US. It is the US's asinine propping up of our enemies like Pak ,its own strategists stuck in a CW mindset,unable to discard its rent-boy Pak,that is India's greatest annoyance and dispute with the US.It is exceptionally hypocritical for the US to agree that China poses a threat to India,egging us on to join its anti-China military alliance ,while it advises us that a nuclear-weaponised Pak,heavily armed and supported in N-weaponry and tech from China is no great threat to us! It wants us to waltz with the Paki scorpion despite its litany of lies and long list of acts of terror against India. Thus the IAF needs both Pak specific and China specific air assets ,while the IAF and IN in particular requires assets to dominate the maritime sphere.

In the Pak specific scenario,given Pak's lack of geographic depth,Adm.Greenert's views have relevance.Pak's best fighter are its F-16s,being upgraded,but our M-2000 and MIG-29UGs ,leaving aside the Flanker MKIs would be quite adequate to deal with the Paki threat.Our legacy aircraft armed with LR PGMs could strike deep into Paki territory without having to enter its airspace.We also have new tactical med. range missiles developed which can be built in bulk to take out key nodes.Therefore in the Paki scenario,the Rafale (along with the MIG-35,Gripen,etc.,) could still be relevant in 2040,but at what acquisition cost? That is the key Q.

However the same cannot be said for China.China has stationed numerous fighters including its own Flanker derivatives,along with large numbers of tactical missiles in Tibet which can strike deep into Indian territory.We on the other hand have nothing that can hit China where it hurts! What asset to we have that could strike Beijing or Shanghai? The myopia of the IAF and MOD strategists have seen to it that we possess no strategic long range bombing capability whatsoever,even when it was offered to us by the Soviets long ago. This glaring defecit in our arsenal has been repeatedly pointed out by analysts but is the IAF listening?

In the China specific scenario,how far can the Rafale reach? Even with tanker refuelling,can refuelling safely take place over hostile airspace unless total air dominance has been obtained? Do we also have the required numbers of aircraft to deal with both Pak and China in a two-front war scenario? Even if there is war only on one front,how much of our assets could we transfer to the battlefront leaving the other front exposed and vulnerable? The Rafale acquisition,while it may be able to deliver X payload of legacy aircraft,cannot be in two places at the same time.What is its availability and sortie rate too? 40% as mentioned in some reports?

Some members like NR have drawn attention to the full-scale development of LR UCAVs by the Europeans who may be downsizing heir manned strike aircraft numbers in the future in favour of LR/L-endurance UCAVs post 2020.By then,the JSF series production would've started ,just as Russia's PAK-DA ,its new strategic bomber takes to the air,while the PAK-FA is expected to enter service in 2016 from the foll. report posted in full in the FGFA td. With China also plg. to induct two stealth birds around 2020.

The GOI/MOD/IAF should take a more holistic view of current and future threats and developments and not be armtwisted into a hasty decision by pressure from the French .The "Rafale or bust" attitude might indeed "bust the bank" of Indian defence leaving us lopsided with gaps in other critical areas and in the future deliver less than expected results,which might also sound the death knell for the LCA if the MK-2 development and series production does not start by 2020 the latest. As the Chinese say,we must "hasten cautiously" in taking a decision .

http://rt.com/news/179256-russia-deploy-s500-missiles/
Russia to deploy fifth-gen fighters, S-500 missiles in 2016


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