arthuro wrote:Viv, you often selectively answer to what I post without addressing all my previous post. Just an example:
I said:That’s where you’re wrong: simply because Dassault has not communicated on this issue does not mean that they are behind. In fact with the full control of the program (Thales main shareholder is Dassault) they have much more room and leeway to propose extended partnership than with Typhoon Gmbh which have to cope with four different countries that are not necessarily happy to sacrifice too much compared to their neighbor.
And you answered:There is no evidence of Dassault having offered India any participation in future upgrades and any assertions of it being so is pure speculation.
Either you have not properly read was I have written either you are arguing for the sake of arguing which is time consuming and not very respectful. I just answered to your speculation that Dassault did not offer any partnership to India. I told you that nobody knows as they did not communicate about their commercial offer and that Dassault should have more leeway and more room to propose cooperation if they wanted to. Then you accuse me of saying that Dassault have proposed a better partnership. That’s not a very honest way of arguing.
Oh I did get your point about Dassault offering India a workshare in future Rafale development, but lets face it - we can only debate here on basis of publicly available information. When new facts emerge, we alter our position. For example, I was convinced the Super Hornet offered the best overall value for money by virtue of having a host of cost effective munitions available with it. When it was revealed that the MoD will be negotiating the munitions package independently and that Raytheon was gunning for that contract, I changed my opinion (the winning MMRCA aircraft would have a superior airframe as well as the option of the American munitions).
Point is, if and when Dassault releases information in public about an outstanding industrial offer, I will revisit my opinion and see where I stand. But until that day arrives, based on available public information (not speculation) - the EF does offer a considerably better deal to HAL and the Indian industry, in addition to having better ties with them.
Same goes for:“So its only in the event of an export order being signed that frictions will arise? Disregarding the fact that the workshare will be allotted as soon as India joins the consortium (not when an order in the offing).”
You can disagree which is you very right but you should avoid distorting my previous answers to make your point. I also mentioned friction due to the necessary investment that partner nations are unwilling to pay and I also mentioned potential risk due to government changes of some of the partner nations. So if you want to debate you are welcome but you have to do it in a transparent way. I consider that you have not fully addressed my previous points.
I didn't realise my answers were less than transparent (still don't as a matter of fact). Frankly, I can't fathom a situation where political uncertainty in the consortium would affect India's participation. If a production workshare could have been allotted to Italy and Spain, I'm sure an arrangement could worked out with India as well, especially with subcontracting work for the follow-on MMRCA order being a distinct possibility.
That said, this only becomes an issue if the Eurofighter bags an export order after 2016 which, lets face it, is unlikely. India's interest on the other hand is likely to be with regard to upgrades where it can invest in partnerships with the multiple companies involved, at the initial stage. That way HAL or BEL could customize and implement them, without protracted negotiations with the European govts. or companies (like that in the case of the Mirage 2000).
Dassault in contrast has been criticized (both in the international and French media) for having a lackadaisical approach to exports particularly in the wake of the UAE order coming unstuck. The general opinion is that its satisfied with French government orders for Rafale with its real focus being on its Falcon business jet line. And where it has participated, its approach has been less than ideal, like blaming political equations for the Swiss loss. Even in competitions where political factors did play a role like South Korea - making its grievances public, was hardly good business.
CAESAR is not a prototype it is a demonstrator that flew a few series of flight in 2007 if I remember well and is not flying anymore since a longtime. CAESAR is similar to rafale DRAAMA AESA demonstrator was. Besides there is no such thing as full scale development for the CAPTOR-E, they attributed Selex with a 6 million pounds envelop a few weeks ago which is clearly not enough to start any meaningful development. There is still not a single prototype flying and it is not even close being tested in a lab.
Tsk tsk ... now we're debating the semantics of it. If you're referring to a production or pre-production variant being flight tested of course you're right. But that doesn't mean one wouldn't be operational by 2014-15. The same arguments you've made also apply to the Gripen NG's Raven AESA. Yet the IAF accepted Eurofighter's offer while rejecting Saab's. The IAF's evaluation included a detailed study of the Captor-E's development including flight trials conducted for its benefit, and they found EF's proposal acceptable.
-As for AtG weapons apart from one type of 1000 pound LgB and the GBU-49 to come there is absolutely nothing in the pipeline except vague claims. Not a single penny has been officially attributed to integrate further AtG weaponry. I would be curious if you bring me the official press release stating a Raytheon Harm integration and so on…
Between the PW II, PW III and dual mode EPW II, EPW III & PW IV, most staple air to ground missions are covered. In addition, all the munitions are qualified with the EF's Litening III (which is the IAF's standard laser designation pod) while the Rafale will have probably have to start the Litening's integration from scratch.
With regard to the HARM, it'll be some time before its integrated, since the Tornado ECR is still a while away from retirement. But their integration is in the pipeline. The JDAM on the other hand is already in the process of being integrated. The Saudis too will looking to use their new JDAMs with the RSAF's EFs).
Germany Awaits Air-to-Ground Eurofighter
Luftwaffe officials confirmed that the air-to-ground aircraft will initially be optimized for use of the GBU-54 Laser Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM). Luftwaffe acquisition of this weapon was announced by Boeing in July, and Germany is the first international customer for the weapon.
Boeing said that delivery of LJDAM kits is expected to begin in mid-2009, although the Luftwaffe admits that a full air-to-ground capability will not be realized until 2011-12. In the interim, ground-attack training will focus on use of the Eurofighter's internal 27mm gun.
I'll see if I can locate the article about the EF eventually replacing the Tornado ECR in the SEAD role with HARMs.
-As for CFTs it is not even about turning Typhoon in a deep strike aircraft it more urgently giving it a meaningful endurance with a heavy war load. Typhoon is limited with 1000L drop tanks and it is bigger and heavier than the rafale. Given it size and its cost it would be hard to accept an endurance of the magnitude of a Tejas or a mig-21.
Huh? Oh come now, you're telling me that you think the Eurofighter has the same endurance as the MiG-21!! Lets not get carried away please.
On internal fuel it will have range comparable to the Rafale. Right now it can carry upto 3000L externally on three wetpoints. 1500L fuel tanks were tested but they limited the aircraft's g-limit and its ability to go supersonic, so they were shelved. Point is that the EF's endurance is more than sufficient for the IAF's requirements. If it required the extreme fuel carrying capacity that the Rafale brings to the table, it would have integrated fuel tanks on the Su-30MKI as well.
CFTs are being developed because the RAF would like to employ the 2 Storm Shadows in addition to 2 fuel tanks, for Libya-style air strikes in the future (when its Tornados have retired). Its a capability that neither the RAF nor the IAF urgently needs.
To answer you on rafale upgrades : a ready AESA radar, a new engine called M88-4E which offer better costs of ownership (less fuel consumption, less maintenance), a new enhanced frontal sector optronic (OSF-IT for Improved Technologies) and a new Missile warning receiver called DDM-NG which has an angular accuracy compatible with DIRCM.
All these capabilities are already fully developed. First aircraft with these upgrades will be delivered to French air force in 2012 and the first squadron will be operational as soon as 2014. So that makes a rafale deal transparent, low risk and easier to induct.
'M88-4E which offer better costs of ownership' compared to what? Obviously the preceding engine. The same goes for all the other new goodies. Its like Boeing saying that the IAF should buy the Super Hornet because its better in all respects to the original Hornet.
The aircraft needs to be judged on its merits, not because it has new components. For that matter, the EF too is being upgraded with new DRFM, TRD and new DASS antennas, but its not a factor as far as the IAF induction goes.
Also, getting an upranged AESA in quick time doesn't help much when the primary air to air weapon i.e. Meteor isn't going to be operational until about 2015.
mirage 2000 upgrade :
As for mirage 2000 upgrade we have to disagree: no one forced the IAF to sign this deal and there were other options. You are also downplaying synergies with the rafale fleet and you are wrong on the remained life span of the mirages as they will undergo an airframe modification to increase their potential for another 20 years if too much fatigue is found during the upgrade.
Yes no one forced the MoD to sign the deal, and yes there were other cheaper but riskier options available. That said, it doesn't mean that the IAF and MoD are going to look back at the entire process (starting 2007 if not earlier) with any degree of delight.
Price negotiations for the Mirage-2000 upgrade have travelled a rocky road over two years. Initially, Dassault quoted Rs 13,500 crore ($2.9 billion), which it brought down to the current level of Rs 10,000 crore ($2.1 billion) after the IAF diluted its upgrade requirements. But the MoD believes Dassault’s reduced bid only reflects the diluted requirements, rather than any flexibility on the latter’s part.
The IAF, traditionally a staunch supporter of Dassault and the Mirage-2000 fighter, is apparently changing its views. Dassault, say pilots, has badly damaged its credibility during the recent negotiations by arm-twisting the IAF over the supply of spares for the Mirage-2000 fleet.
http://www.business-standard.com/india/ ... er/373419/
It might seem like I'm downplaying synergies between the Mirage and Rafale, but that's primarily because I'm less than convinced about the prospect. Both the Rafale and EF will share one air to air missile (MICA/ASRAAM) as well as most air to ground munitions, with other parts of the IAF's fleet. Some avionics are common - but I doubt there are great savings to be made on maintenance for the mission computer, INS/GPS modules etc.
Every 2000 hours the aircraft goes for an overhaul where it checked for signs of fatigue but that does not prevent the aircraft from ageing. Like I said before, an airframe life extension doesn't appear to be a part of Dassault's upgrade offer (and judging from the USN's $15 million airframe upgrade of the Hornet, its not a cheap endeavour). In addition, ignoring its all metal airframe and 80s era engine, even the Mirage's avionics and munitions will be obsolescent by 2025.
You also did not provide anything about BAE enjoying the reputation Dassault enjoy. I am not saying the relation between BAE and India is not good just that it is not at the same level, especially after Dassault/mirage performance during the Kargil conflict.
How do you measure reputation? Especially when one party's role has been enabling HAL to actually manufacture Jaguars and Hawks for the IAF, while the other's role was limited to after sales support (and now upgrades) for the Mirage 2000.
What do you mean by Dassault's performance during the Kargil conflict? A lot of information from that period is contradictory, but the general consensus is that it was the Israelis who assisted the IAF with the supply of PGMs and Litening integration.
In any case, why do you think its a zero sum game, where the IAF can be very satisfied with either Dassault or BAE, but not both? Also, at this stage the IAF has passed the ball into the MoD's court, where the HAL's input will have greater weight.
Source told idrw.org, that good serviceability of the aircraft and high mission availability of the Mirage-2000 in IAF fleet has lead to go with the French upgrade package, Mirage 2000 in last two decade in IAF fleet was the best weapons delivery aircraft and had an enviable safety record, and even Su-30MKI doesn’t have such a distinguished record.
Again, just because the IAF is very pleased with its Mirages doesn't mean that it values Dassault over BAE. As the most expensive fighter acquired (inflation adjusted) by the IAF to date, one would expect it to be better than the rest of the fleet at least as far as serviceability and availability go. Certainly better than the cheaper Russian types in service.
Last point about mirage 2000 retirement: the time frame is 2025-2030 when the rafale will become the only type in the French airforce and I assumed 2000D and 2000-5 will be the last out as they are the most potent one which is a reasonable bet. I’ll look if I find a specific source on the 2000-5 and 2000D.
The 2000D I can understand, being almost a decade younger than the older Mirage variants, but I'm skeptical about the Mirage-2000-5. I'll await your source.