MRCA News and Discussion

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Cain Marko
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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Cain Marko » 19 Aug 2009 01:25

I can understand B-2s, but sending in B-52s and even B-1s into chinese controlled airspace without escorts is suicide.

natchiket, b52s/B1s can be used v.effectively to launch LACMs from long range. No need to go close to chinese airspace at all. For example B52s launched lACMs well in advance of H-hour during Iraq I.
You can carry out SEAD missons using bombers but who's going to take care of the legions of flankers the PLAAF can throw at you. In the absence of F-22s and F-15s that job falls on the SH. And the USN would not be buying 460 of them if it wasn't up to the task.


A) The flankers etc will be handicapped if C3 nodes are down (which will be the v.objective of stealth, tlam, bomber strikes). in case of iraq, the whole network was sufficiently degraded within minutes of H-hour. Tells you something. SA really suffers and consequently fighter assets can't be used optimally. Flankers are on the backfoot.
B. why do you think there will be "an absence of F-15s/F-22s"? They can easily fly in from Kadena, Misawa and even Osan. Plus the chance of basing them closer in japan/korea, even taiwan is v.probable.

Admittedly shornets will be involved in tangling with the degraded flankers. it'd be a terrible waste otherwise. My guess is in the initial stages they will stick to providing CAP and cover for the CBGs which will launch TLAMs in massive quantities. Flankers will find it v.difficult to spot the CBGs (esp. if chinese C3 nodes have been disabled at least to some extent), if they do, then of course they have to deal with the shornet bubble.

cm

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby GeorgeWelch » 19 Aug 2009 01:30

Cain Marko wrote:Hello! AWACS are just one part of that armada, btw, india just has one as of now. And the AWACS is hardly an offensive platform used for SEAD/DEAD. The armada to degrade enemy AD starts with lets see - TLAMS, Stealth bombers/fighters, B2s, B52s, B1s, EW assets. Now that sir is the bulk of the armada that goes in well before the shornet and does much of the damage.


If possible, sure.

But the USN is also prepared to go in without any external support. That is their MISSION.

I do not understand your constant belittling of carriers. If they were as impotent as you imply, the US would simply scrap them all.

Because after all we can always be assured of a friendly base within range . . .


Cain Marko wrote:
Frankly, I would make no such assumption.

So lets make assumptions that totally favor your super hornet scenario right.


You never assume the enemy will pull punches, that is dangerous thinking.

Plan for the worst, hope for the best.

Surya
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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Surya » 19 Aug 2009 01:34

Relationship improves not one, but at least 4 countries


a couple of them pretty useless and one has more peceniks and greenies than the rest of the world together. Not going to get much donw

Life cycle costs are low.


Somehow I doubt that - based on what ?? they are more expensive countries for everything - why would youthink they would lower life cycle costs?? and they need there high paying , 35 hour week jobs - not going to transfer much.

Also note future dev will be hostage to the wranglings of these nations. That problem has existed throughout.


Also why would we think sanctions would not happen??

After all they found enough excuses for Sea kings to be grounded.

Lets face it - till we are a 200 pound gorilla we will face risks of sanctions(official or unofficial) no matter what - we can minimise it but are not in a position to eliminate it. So lets do away with that fantasy.

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Rahul M » 19 Aug 2009 01:44

200 pound gorilla

:lol: that would be a really small gorilla.

p.s. the actual reason why I'm posting here.
as is well known MRCA thread is given a free rein, its the wild west of BRF. however with the evaluations starting we might start off a bit more serious thread (less of I think xyz stuff) to catch all the relevant reports.

request to members : if you come across an informative article good enough to kickstart a new thread please
a) post the article
b) report the post requesting a mod to start the new thread.

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Igorr » 19 Aug 2009 01:45

Have put a brief review about MiG-35 in my blog. Hope it could help...

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Kartik » 19 Aug 2009 01:48

I was hoping to see the IN's MiG-29KUB and the actual final MiG-35 prototype at MAKS 2009. has anyone seen a picture of the definitive MiG-35 prototype, apart from the models shown earlier ? its actually quite close to the time when the MiG-35 will need to show up in India for its flight testing, so I'm hoping that MiG actually finally displays what it claims will be the MiG-35's final configuration, instead of a souped up MiG-29M2. in the Gripen NG's case (which is the only one where the aircraft offered is still a prototype), the Gripen Demo's Outer Mould Line is pretty much the final NG's OML.

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Cain Marko » 19 Aug 2009 02:15

I really think the Gripen NG is very promising. It seems to some strong points working for it:
1) Excellent payload/range capacity. payload is a little low, but v. similar to the M2k-5 that the IAF really wanted.
2) Nice set of sensors/EW networked very well they into a really excellent MMI
3) Solid networking capabilities allowing passive attacks
4) Excellent price if we are to look at their offers for Norway, Netherlands, and Brazil, roughly $ 70 million INCLUSIVE of support. Its Cost per hour is also phenomenal - $ 2500-3000.

Only drawbacks:
1) It is yet to fly in its final config
2) Has an american engine that they may not be able to assure supplies for.
3) Similar to the Tejas MkII, although they seem to have a greater payload capacity.

I wish they'd gone with an Ej-200 or even a Al-31 if possible, would have certainly made it more attractive.

CM>

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby NRao » 19 Aug 2009 03:03

Kartik wrote:I was hoping to see the IN's MiG-29KUB and the actual final MiG-35 prototype at MAKS 2009. has anyone seen a picture of the definitive MiG-35 prototype, apart from the models shown earlier ? its actually quite close to the time when the MiG-35 will need to show up in India for its flight testing, so I'm hoping that MiG actually finally displays what it claims will be the MiG-35's final configuration, instead of a souped up MiG-29M2. in the Gripen NG's case (which is the only one where the aircraft offered is still a prototype), the Gripen Demo's Outer Mould Line is pretty much the final NG's OML.



You missed the article on MiG has started testing the 35 in RU? Posted a few pages ago.

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

On Grip NG and its American engine, IIRC Dorai stated that that is not an issue. Some thing to do with Swedes having an agreement that Uncle will not interfere with US products (US can with non-US products I guess).

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Surya » 19 Aug 2009 03:22

Rahul

Exactly

When we are a 800 pound gorilla - we should have our products and no need to buy from others.


:)

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Kartik » 19 Aug 2009 03:47

NRao wrote:
Kartik wrote:I was hoping to see the IN's MiG-29KUB and the actual final MiG-35 prototype at MAKS 2009. has anyone seen a picture of the definitive MiG-35 prototype, apart from the models shown earlier ? its actually quite close to the time when the MiG-35 will need to show up in India for its flight testing, so I'm hoping that MiG actually finally displays what it claims will be the MiG-35's final configuration, instead of a souped up MiG-29M2. in the Gripen NG's case (which is the only one where the aircraft offered is still a prototype), the Gripen Demo's Outer Mould Line is pretty much the final NG's OML.



You missed the article on MiG has started testing the 35 in RU? Posted a few pages ago.



I had another question regarding the MiG-35..as part of the "unified" family of Fulcrum fighters, the MiG-29K and MiG-29KUB shared the same forward fuselage section. the single seater kept the same section, with the same canopy as the twin seater, but instead of the WSO's seat, avionics are placed there.

while reading Igorr's article on the MiG-35 on this blog, he states "The internal fuel capacity is raised as 1.5 times on MiG-35 and achieves 4,800 kg. New load points allow up to 5 external fuel tanks. The capacity of the central one was raised from 1520 to 2150 liters. However, the two-sitting MiG-35D variant lacks one internal fuel tank with 630 liter of capacity."

that would indicate that the MiG-35 single seater actually continues to keep the forward fuselage section as a MiG-29M (with a much smaller bubble canopy), not the MiG-29K/KUB and MiG-29M2. I might be wrong, and they may keep the same section for commonality purposes, but then why should the twin-seat MiG-35D lose an internal fuel tank unless a fuel tank is placed right behind the pilot on the single seat MiG-35 ?

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Cain Marko » 19 Aug 2009 04:12

while reading Igorr's article on the MiG-35 on this blog, he states "The internal fuel capacity is raised as 1.5 times on MiG-35 and achieves 4,800 kg. New load points allow up to 5 external fuel tanks. The capacity of the central one was raised from 1520 to 2150 liters. However, the two-sitting MiG-35D variant lacks one internal fuel tank with 630 liter of capacity."


Kartik,

The MiG-35 should have about 5500kg of internal fuel, same as the MiG-29k. The MiG-29M and older K had close to 4800kg fuel and the current MiG-29K will have 16% more than 9.31, which is around 5500kg. To quote Y.Gordon as posted by Pit:
The internal fuel capacity of the MiG-29K (izdeliye 9.41) is more than 50% greater than the basic MiG-29's and more than 16% greater than that of the original MiG-29K (izdeliye 9.31).The increase is due to the provision of additional fuselage tanks (including a 500-litre (110 Imp gal) tank in the fuselage spine and smaller tanks in the LERXes) and the installation of a 630-litre (138.6 Imp gal) auxiliary tank occupying the rear cockpit; this latter tank is omitted on the MiG-29KUB. Additionally, the capacity of the centreline drop tank has been increased from 1,250 litres (275 Imp gal) to 2,150 litres {473 Imp gal) and the number of underwing drop tanks holding 1,150 litres (253 Imp gal) each has been increased from two to four. [

This makes sense because the current K version has an internal fuel range of 2000km, unlike the previous K (9.31) which was about 1800km. (migavia.ru). In fact, iirc the MiG-29M on offer to the Austrians around 2002 had an internal fuel cap of about 5000kg for the M and 4700kg for the M2.
As far as the forward fuselage sections go, I think for the single seaters, an additional tank replaces the WSO in the twin seaters resulting in extra fuel as said above.

CM.

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Cain Marko » 19 Aug 2009 04:26

For those of us who might have missed this, it seems an interesting tech eval report of the dutch fighter competition, which had quite a few of the IAF MRCA candidates involved was made public. Here is a graph of said eval:

Image

http://bruxelles2.over-blog.com/article-22711204.html

The google translation suggests that the dutch eval was totally political and therefore the rafale was given the shaft. NOT AGAIN!

Hate to say this but notice what an edge is given to the eurocanards over the teens. The strange thing is how low the Gripen is rated. My guess is that:
a) There is a lot of hype surrounding the gripen
b) They evaluated the Gripen and not the NG.

apart from that and the F-16 being put ahead of the the Shornet, it pretty much coincides with the conclusions of my chart.

CM.

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Cain Marko » 19 Aug 2009 04:54

OK, here is a pic of the MiG-35: Its the same 154 again; :evil:

Image

It looks like 9 hps anyways. Here is some more pics

http://pilot.strizhi.info/2009/08/18/6748

Scroll down a bit gents and get a gander at the IN's Latest Acquisition:
Image

Lookin good.

CM
Last edited by Cain Marko on 19 Aug 2009 05:19, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Kartik » 19 Aug 2009 05:10

Cain Marko wrote:
Kartik,

The MiG-35 should have about 5500kg of internal fuel, same as the MiG-29k. The MiG-29M and older K had close to 4800kg fuel and the current MiG-29K will have 16% more than 9.31, which is around 5500kg. To quote Y.Gordon as posted by Pit:
The internal fuel capacity of the MiG-29K (izdeliye 9.41) is more than 50% greater than the basic MiG-29's and more than 16% greater than that of the original MiG-29K (izdeliye 9.31).The increase is due to the provision of additional fuselage tanks (including a 500-litre (110 Imp gal) tank in the fuselage spine and smaller tanks in the LERXes) and the installation of a 630-litre (138.6 Imp gal) auxiliary tank occupying the rear cockpit; this latter tank is omitted on the MiG-29KUB. Additionally, the capacity of the centreline drop tank has been increased from 1,250 litres (275 Imp gal) to 2,150 litres {473 Imp gal) and the number of underwing drop tanks holding 1,150 litres (253 Imp gal) each has been increased from two to four. [

This makes sense because the current K version has an internal fuel range of 2000km, unlike the previous K (9.31) which was about 1800km. (migavia.ru). In fact, iirc the MiG-29M on offer to the Austrians around 2002 had an internal fuel cap of about 5000kg for the M and 4700kg for the M2.
As far as the forward fuselage sections go, I think for the single seaters, an additional tank replaces the WSO in the twin seaters resulting in extra fuel as said above.

CM.


Thanks, CM..does that mean that the single seater MiG-35 also shares the unified family front fuselage section (same as MiG-29K/KUB/M2) ?

While this may not be relevant for the MiG-29K/KUB or the MiG-35, but on the Eurofighter Typhoon, Luftwaffe pilots did speak about how the single seater Typhoon was a nimbler dogfighter with slightly better aerodynamics than the twin-seater Typhoon and the reason was attributed to the longer canopy that increased drag. maybe the cost advantage of a similar front fuselage section on both the single and twin seat MiG-29K and KUB as well as the MiG-35 exceed any such drag concerns, or maybe the superlative aerodynamics of the MiG-29K (Article 9.41) mean that there are no real concerns with increased drag.

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Cain Marko » 19 Aug 2009 05:28

Kartik wrote:Thanks, CM..does that mean that the single seater MiG-35 also shares the unified family front fuselage section (same as MiG-29K/KUB/M2) ?

While this may not be relevant for the MiG-29K/KUB or the MiG-35, but on the Eurofighter Typhoon, Luftwaffe pilots did speak about how the single seater Typhoon was a nimbler dogfighter with slightly better aerodynamics than the twin-seater Typhoon and the reason was attributed to the longer canopy that increased drag. maybe the cost advantage of a similar front fuselage section on both the single and twin seat MiG-29K and KUB as well as the MiG-35 exceed any such drag concerns, or maybe the superlative aerodynamics of the MiG-29K (Article 9.41) mean that there are no real concerns with increased drag.


Don't really know. I wouldn't be surprised that there is a penalty for the KUB/D in terms of drag cause they have the protruding bubble canopy that the single seaters don't. I think the climb rates slightly differ with the single seater being slightly more zippy. V.slight though,

CM.
Last edited by Cain Marko on 19 Aug 2009 06:20, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby NRao » 19 Aug 2009 05:40

CM ji,

On the Dutch eval, the IAF RFP may not be even close to theirs. So we need to keep our minds wee bit open.

Having said that there is no doubt that politics will come into play. Which I do not mind, however, I do hope that th IAF decision is transparent. Which is why I think there will be two a vendors selected: an IAF pleaser and a MMS pleaser.

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Cain Marko » 19 Aug 2009 06:22

NRao wrote:CM ji,
On the Dutch eval, the IAF RFP may not be even close to theirs. So we need to keep our minds wee bit open.
.


Raosir, all I can figure out is that they were looking for a "multirole" a/c. The multi criteria that they speak of take into account performance and uptimes i think.

CM.

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Kartik » 19 Aug 2009 06:44

Cain Marko wrote:Don't really know. I wouldn't be surprised that there is a penalty for the KUB/D in terms of drag cause they have the protruding bubble canopy that the single seaters don't. I think the climb rates slightly differ with the single seater being slightly more zippy. V.slight though,

CM.


CM, the MiG-29K and KUB share the exact same forward fuselage section, which is basically borrowed over from the MiG-29M2..so the canopy length on the K and KUB is the same. the original MiG-29K (Article 9.31) shared a forward fuselage section similar to the original MiG-29. it might be that the MiG-35 single seater and the MiG-35 twin seater are both going to share it as well.

oh and thanks for the link to the MiG-29K pics..she is a real beauty ! love the Panther's head insignia on the tail, though I'd have expected a White Tiger since its INAS 300 White Tigers squadron..only God knows why the IAF decided to make its aircraft as dull as possible by removing all squadron insignia.

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Singha » 19 Aug 2009 07:37

my choice would be: 80 F16-IN + 46 JSF options.

granted it will be silver-std JSF but with rolling upgrades should still be able to comfortably
engage with flankers and J10+ - anything the prc is likely to steal or produce in next 30 yrs.
we'd also get access to a vast array of proven(in colonial wars) american weapons , sensors
and EW gear.

just the talk of jsf options will vastly complicate their force planning and expenses.

meantime we can also on the Pak-fa-IN to eventually supplement and replace the MKI as
the heavy fighter.

:twisted:

F16-IN with CFT can almost match the F-15E in combat radius albeit with a smaller payload
and free up the MKIs for doing what they do best - shoot everything else out of the sky!
plus the APG-x will have a much better SAR/ISAR mode than Bars as we already know...ideal for lo-lo-lo night missions and smashing hidden targets from high level at night.

people who are 'serious' about fighting like IDF are going the JSF way, so its not just
political clout. plus with 2000+ scheduled US purchases it will have highest levels of
investment in sensors, engines, weapons and avionics in next 20-30 yrs among all contenders. nobody will come close to that investment.

Mig35, Gripen and Rafale should be excluded purely because home countries dont have
much interest or cash to invest on these over next two decades.

onlee EF might survive albeit with UK pulling out. germany, spain and italy would be the
core nations left.

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Cain Marko » 19 Aug 2009 09:20

Singha wrote:my choice would be: 80 F16-IN + 46 JSF options.


That (or something similar to it) I think is the best offer the U.S. can make, v.v.tempting. "We'll have 40 F-16s @ your doorstep on the double - McDonald ishtyle, thereafter you can build the JSF vadapaaw shtyle right at home, we will also take back those lousy F-16s in lieu of similar amount of JSFs instead of an MLU".

CM.

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Cain Marko » 19 Aug 2009 10:17

Kartik wrote:oh and thanks for the link to the MiG-29K pics..she is a real beauty ! love the Panther's head insignia on the tail, though I'd have expected a White Tiger since its INAS 300 White Tigers squadron..only God knows why the IAF decided to make its aircraft as dull as possible by removing all squadron insignia.


Is it just me or does the K look like the best finished fulcrum ever? Look at the tail section. The IN has done a fabulous job.

CM.

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Willy » 19 Aug 2009 10:28

Why speculate??????????????Sighhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh its going to be the S.H. Uncle is just to strong politically and will demand payment for the nuke deal via this order. It the IAF decides to go for a single engined fighter then it will be The F-16. Though that might not be so bad if the JSF is thrown in.

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Singha » 19 Aug 2009 11:36

>lousy F-16s

you call the F-16-block60+ as lousy ? why ? with amraam and aim9x, with a2a fuel load and APG80 radar it will clean up almost anything flying today and tomorrow.
and it doesnt have the naval penalty of the F18 in wing style and undercarriage weight.

imagine what that 35000lb thrust engine, cft fuel, aesa radar and 6 amraams could do?

just because the pakis have something in that line doesnt mean its bad. they have been
kitted up with promises of block52 f-solah, and already given good TPQ-77 search radars,
harpoons, phalanx, P3C upg, M109A5...good kits all.
Last edited by Singha on 19 Aug 2009 11:55, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby krishnan » 19 Aug 2009 11:43

I think some agreement should be signed with all of them baring them from questioning the choice of the A/C when the final winner is announced. You dont want this to end up like the helo deal

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Charu » 19 Aug 2009 12:02

F16 is still one of the most capable fighter machine in the world ... I agree with you Singha Sir

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby adel ansari » 19 Aug 2009 12:08

I think.. Most of us here are being very pak specific when considering an a/c. i.e. a strict no no for F16..I think Pak No longer posses andy real threat to us nor it has any capability to do so..We should all be looking east.. China is the real guy to beat..(Even our military chiefs believe so).. In all our military procurement we chould be considering relevance against China and not Pak..and no matter what these chinks do they will never get their hands on American stuff..France may get tempted and destperate if Chinks make an offer and so will Russis .. but Typhoon, SH and Gripen will elude chinks foreva.. and they won't have anything better than these to match.. I personally feel no American stuff.. because of too much hassle with supplies at time of distress.. for me Typhoon is ultimate,, a bit expensive but think should be split between typhoon and gripen to keep cost down.. BTW Gripen does n't look bad either.. checked out their promotional video.. says most advanced Datalink.. (I am a new devout of fighter jets so if any one can please take the pain to explain the importance of Datalinks and is Gripen really technically the most advance stuff)..
Thanks...

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Singha » 19 Aug 2009 12:13

China is alleged to offer France a deal for 200 Rafale if France can work to get the EU arms embargo removed...atleast to extent of buying purely french stuff. while Rafale is the carrot, the chinese really want access to the vast pool of useful technologies within EU umbrella for filling gaps and closing domestic projects too.

I believe EU is anyway falling all over to sell non-lethal stuff like ships generators, motors, engines for chinese naval progs - wartsila, pielstick, mtu et al.

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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Cain Marko » 19 Aug 2009 12:21

Singha wrote:>lousy F-16s

you call the F-16-block60+ as lousy ? why ? with amraam and aim9x, with a2a fuel load and APG80 radar it will clean up almost anything flying today and tomorrow.
and it doesnt have the naval penalty of the F18 in wing style and undercarriage weight.

imagine what that 35000lb thrust engine, cft fuel, aesa radar and 6 amraams could do?

just because the pakis have something in that line doesnt mean its bad. they have been
kitted up with promises of block52 f-solah, and already given good TPQ-77 search radars,
harpoons, phalanx, P3C upg, M109A5...good kits all.


Lousy as compared to JSF for sure saar. Thats what I meant. But now that you make me think about it, amongst all the MRCA birds, this one is definitely scraping the bottom along with the shornet and the fulcrum. And it has nothing to do with pakis saar.
Why? V. simple:

14.5 tons of thrust cannot compensate for the weight penalty it has to bear in terms of wingloading. The F-16 A was about 7500 kg empty, the blk 50 is about 8500kg, the blk 60 is nice and fat @ 10000kg. All this without an iota of increase in either wing area or internal fuel capacity. At least the shornet has bigger wings plus more fuel. Range/endurance, turn rates, climb rates will all suffer wonlee when chota becomes mota. So to overcome range/endurance issues what they do? put up CFTs, now the poor beast lumbers around with an additional 2+ tons of weight. There goes the fantastic additional thrust. You can only put so much on the camel before you break its back.

Of course it has the Apg-80. But so what? it still has a teeny weeny nose. The Rafale will have the RBE-2, the EF-2k will have a far bigger Caesar (some say 1400 TRMs), the Shornet has the more powerful Apg-79 (1100trms), the teeny gripen has a nice swashplate selex design, even the russkis might pull something out of the bag (1064 trms). Apg 80 will not carry the day.

As for Amraam/Aim9X/JHMCS, all the others offer their own lovely combos, with the euros racingg ahead with meteors/iris ts/asraams/mica IIRs and what not. Russkis too chip in their two bits with izd 180 r-74 and wot not, even the israelis got their own version in pythonV/Dash, I'm sure chipanda has something in store. Nothing exceptional there i'm afraid.

The dutch evals are a good indication of the F-16blk60 imho. I'll give it this much though, its become a great bomb truck.

And thats just in terms of performance, how do you further improve/upgrade/evolve an a/c that is already busting at its seams. Damn it even ripped a tire @ AI09 iirc. That is one fat bird. 10 years down the road when chipanda j10s and j11s get AESAs, this bird best dig itself a hole and sit real quiet.

And of course it shares its problems and agonies with the other teen - totally new logistic, supply chain, susceptibility to sanctions etc. Also, if the UAE price is any indication, this a/c will also share a whopping tag like the shornet.

Now that I've said my piece against both the teens, I eagerly await brickbats from teen fans. (ducks real quick)... :D

CM.

Philip
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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Philip » 19 Aug 2009 12:39

Sorry,it should read...the MIG-35 as a lighter alternative with a "single-seat" aircraft (not single-engined).I have never advocated buying second-hand MIG-29s.Upgrading all that we have (being done) and buying the MIG-35 in significant numbers ,especially should we have futher delays with the LCA MK-2.The IAF could also take a look at the other Flanker variants,the Su-34 for the medium strategic bombing role,China specific and the single-seat SU-35,as an alternative to two-seat SU-30MKIs.

There are some interesting snippets from varied sources,when put together indicate that we should take,as suggested before,a more holistic look at what the total needs and composition of the IAF's fleet should be to meet the coming chalenges .Our principal enemies are China and Pak,who could attack us separately or conjointly.The aircraft likely to be ranged against us by them both consist in the case of China,a large number of Flankers and modified Flanker designs.Russian estimates are that China will drop its purchases from Russia by a whopping 90%,as they are reverse engineering their products without paying any royalties and even US analysts say that China has now almost achieved full indigenous capability in aircraft design including engine manufacture.A truly massive achievement.China is also developing its own twin-engined stealth fighter.Much of the tech has come from Russia,but it has also through Pak,acquired much western tech.Tomahawk cruise missile tech from crashed missiles,cluster bomb tech from Paki British HUnting cluster bombs modified into electric-grid spool-wire munitions copying the US's bombs used in the Balkans.It is similarly developing a wide range of missiles,BVR and stand-off included from similar sources.

Apart from the Flankers,the J-10 and J-17 will be the most prevalent types that the IAF will encounter.Pak plans to acquire/build locally 250+ J-17s (30 per year built in Pak)and will also acquire later more capable Chinese aircraft.The Chinese have cuaght up and surpassed the F-16 era fighter tech and it is why Pak is putting most of its eggs into the Chinese basket,not depending totally upon the US for fear of sanctions.It however depends upon Chinese funding for these aircraft,which China will provide as it hopes for large scale exports to developing nations where it has considerable influence.

The IAF therefore will be faced by the end of the next decade with not just several hundred Flanker variants,but several hundreds,even 1000+ J-17s and J-10s.The Chinese 5th-gen stealth fighter is expected in 2018 too.The IAF which has stated that it will retire older MIG-21 Fishbed variants from next year onwards,will have a two-three years gap when sqd, strength will reportedly come down to 28 sqds.It is precisely at this very vulnerable time that a window of opportnuity for a Sino-Pak "surge" against India could take place on both fronts.At the same time,our sub inventory will also be at its lowest level,as the two Foxtrots and early Kilos will be ready for pensioning off.Even now the sub capability is reportedly only at 50% strength.The Scorpenes will arrive only from 2012 onwards as will the Gorshkov.Even the Indian Army is dreadfully short of artillery.It is only by about 2015 that will we see the modernisation of the Indian armed forces mature.How best to meet the interim years with urgent decisionmaking is the big Q.Estimates form the compeeting manufacturers indciate that it will be at least 3 years for the MMRCA decision to be taken,as evaluation will take at least another whole year.

The delays in decision making,even if remedied right now will not bear fruit if totally new systems are to be acquired to meet the above challenges.As far as the MMRCA requirement is concerned,if the key priority is to find quickly a suitable interim multi-role fighter,two competing aircraft can be acquired faster and integrated more easily than the others.The MIG-35 and the Rafale,as the French can reportedly deliver the first 40 within a very short time from their excosting squadrons and so can MIGs be quickly produced (Wea re alreaady manufacturing locally MIG-29 engines).In addition,the IAF is used to operating both French (Mirage) and Russian aircraft types and have stocks of its weaponry already in service too.The F-18s and F-16s are being stretched out longer in US service because of the delay in the arrival of the JSF.Within two years time,production of both these aircraft will end as planned unless India buys either! The Typhoon delivery dates cannot be met quickly,as there is the Saudi order apart from EU production .Therefore an immediate decision should be made to acquire more aircraft of types in service as suggested (Flankers and Fulcrums and extra upgraded Jaguars for the specific GR role).Acquiring both the MIG-35 and Rafale would be a fail-safe method to keep the IAF's strength healthy and give it the neccessary strength in both tech and numbers.If and when the LCA matures,it should be seen as a bonus to enable us to increase sqd. numbers as the numbers ranged against us keep on increasing,illustrated by the decision to open new air bases in the deep south.

Nihat
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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Nihat » 19 Aug 2009 13:02

the problem with that is MIG's stated position that it will not be able to start production on the Indian tender before 2013 or 2014 , given past records and current position , lets assume late 2014 onleee for the first fly away batch , that is far too late, even the bisons would be up for retirement by then.

Willy
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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Willy » 19 Aug 2009 13:44

45 sqns for the IAF is just a dream at the moment.The success of the LCA is imperative if the IAF is to reach anywhere near this figure.

Singha
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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Singha » 19 Aug 2009 14:31

chicken egg problem - eu canard deltas offer better performance but lack mature aesa and proven weapons. and the shape of their economies doesnt fill one with confidence about future work funds.

khan birds offer lesser raw performance but have better avionics and weapons available now.
they also offer chance to leech on khan's r&d spending.

MRCA is already so late, we cannot afford years long integration and mix-n-match work and funding of upgrades from our purchases. we need it to work on day1. that way khan's pkging looks better.

and the door to JSF is open...major headache for chipanda.

war is not always about the shooting but the drama and stage management. imagine hunkered down on reverse slope at night and you see fantastic patterns of light and smoke in the distant woods, clashing sounds of metal like a great steam powered spiders (wild wild west) on the move, strange screams that cannot be uttered by humans....for chipanda in tibet thats the image we must create on our side of the himalaya.

yossarian
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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby yossarian » 19 Aug 2009 14:40

Willy wrote:Why speculate??????????????Sighhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh its going to be the S.H. Uncle is just to strong politically and will demand payment for the nuke deal via this order. It the IAF decides to go for a single engined fighter then it will be The F-16. Though that might not be so bad if the JSF is thrown in.


I thought the payment for the Nuke deal (atleast the initial big one) was done and dusted with the promise of two reactors coming up in Gujarat and A.P. There is no point going for the SH or F-16 with or without political clout. Cause political clout comes during both peace and war. If we have concerns about Russian spares supply, imagine what the US can do at the time of war(which it has demonstrated). Uncle's support is regime based. The moment a regime (lets say, a left influenced, govt comes into place) all kinds of plugs will begin to be pulled on us.

NRao
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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby NRao » 19 Aug 2009 15:10

My gut feel is that MiG has thrown in the towel. With their stated position that cannot start building the MRCA set till 2013 (wonder what else is happening there for such a delay).

WRT RU, best to concentrate on the FGFA. $10 billion is a nice figure, but not worth it for either India nor Russia, considering the state of affairs all around.

Willy
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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Willy » 19 Aug 2009 15:25

yossarian wrote:
Willy wrote:Why speculate??????????????Sighhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh its going to be the S.H. Uncle is just to strong politically and will demand payment for the nuke deal via this order. It the IAF decides to go for a single engined fighter then it will be The F-16. Though that might not be so bad if the JSF is thrown in.


I thought the payment for the Nuke deal (atleast the initial big one) was done and dusted with the promise of two reactors coming up in Gujarat and A.P. There is no point going for the SH or F-16 with or without political clout. Cause political clout comes during both peace and war. If we have concerns about Russian spares supply, imagine what the US can do at the time of war(which it has demonstrated). Uncle's support is regime based. The moment a regime (lets say, a left influenced, govt comes into place) all kinds of plugs will begin to be pulled on us.



But will the ones in power think like that? Most govts in the world are susceptible to uncle's arm twisting these days.I doubt that GOI has the guts to standup to uncle SAM much as I hate to say so.

Singha
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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Singha » 19 Aug 2009 15:46

with Mig, there are no orders except the IN Mig29K I think. they better merge with Salyut-Sukhoi or vanish?

they will give all the TOT we want, and permit all the customization we want - because they dont have much of what is cutting edge...we would have to pay for the $$$ and time ofcourse .. very flexible.

Shankar
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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Shankar » 19 Aug 2009 16:32

My gut feel is that MiG has thrown in the towel. With their stated position that cannot start building the MRCA set till 2013 (wonder what else is happening there for such a delay).

No way Mig 35 i very much in the race -awaiting reports from MAKS 2009 - just wait and see how it kills all the super bugs of the world in rajastan and high altitude trials

Surya
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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Surya » 19 Aug 2009 18:04

Oh Shankar we would never expect anything less from you. :mrgreen:

NRao
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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby NRao » 19 Aug 2009 19:22

No way Mig 35 i very much in the race -awaiting reports from MAKS 2009 - just wait and see how it kills all the super bugs of the world in rajastan and high altitude trials


On promises, I am sure it will. :)

Kidding aside, two serious questions:
1) Why would they announce, just prior to the testing phase, that MiG will not be able to START building the 35 for the MRCA order before 2013? Knowing that the RFP clearly states that the first 18 should be inducted by 2012
2) What is preventing MiG from delivering the first 18 by by 2012 when MiG does not seem to have any order/s at all? Their line must be at idle or humming at about 5-10% as we post. So what gives?





My suspicion is that the MiG-35, even the ones for testing, are loaded with goodies that do not have a pipeline. I suspect that the planes' suppliers are not prepared to ramp up. Unable to ramp up - UNTIL they see an signed order with monies in the bank.

Which is fine, that is the way business is done.

However, IF this suspicion is true, then it is really not worth going down that isle. Just too many risks. The IAF cannot rely on a financially insolvent enterprises. Damned if the IAF has to fund them too.

This is not a knock on the Russians or MiG, just the way it is - bad timing.

IF TRUE, then:
3) What use is it to kick Super Bugs behind anywhere?

Surya
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Re: MRCA News and Discussion

Postby Surya » 19 Aug 2009 19:32

Good point NRao


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