rohitvats wrote:Pointless obstinacy? Your skin in the game is no more than writing a post on a forum like this. As is mine. If things don't work out, nothing happens to your daily life, nor does it to mine. For ignorance is bliss. And none of us will get to see the real picture which IAF and its planners deal with everyday.
But for someone whose job is to ensure the defense of Indian skies 24 x 7 and without fail, everything and anything to do with a platform counts. LCA joining in large numbers in preset form (Mk1) might give a sense of achievement & fulfillment to people on the forum but it does not if does not address the requirement of the operator and allows him to do his duty, the country of origin will be hardly any solace.
A similar argument has been used to justify the IA's continuing purchases of the T-90.
Besides, would you describe the MiG-21 & MiG-27 as 'platforms that count'? And if so, nothing stops the Tejas from doing as much and more for the operator.
At this point, there should not be any doubts about the integration of IFR, radar or Derby in the minds of anyone following the program (which one presumes includes the IAF). Given how far it has come, technologically speaking these are very minor hurdles and therefore do not justify delaying sanction for a ramp up in production capacity.
All very nice and dandy to say when one does not have the full picture. By same logic, a couple of SP aircraft should have already been with IAF. And IJT should've been already in service training rookies pilots.
IAF's preferred solution is not a cookie cutter approach which you make it to be....LCA and MMRCA are not in the same league. Whether we get Rafale or more Su-30MKI, the 7 squadron worth of slot for MMRCA will not be filled by LCA.
If ADA had been tasked with the development of the IJT, who knows, it may already have been in service.
To clarify though, what you seem to be suggesting is that Tejas Mk1's FOC which has been deferred from Dec 2015 to Apr 2016, may actually only happen by 2018 or later. Therefore, investments in increased production (tooling, land, training etc) should be deferred. (I'm assuming a three year production cycle, therefore - 2018.)
And the Tejas and MMRCA are indeed not in the same league. One of them costs $30M, the other $200M. Agonizing over the choice of MMRCA is to be expected. Sanctioning Tejas production in contrast should
have been an easy decision to make.
It was an easy decision for the PAF. It inducted the $25M JF-17 without a BVR weapon, without HMD, without IFR or without LDP. They had two squadrons in service
before the SD-10A was operationalized. Both squadrons are BVR capable today. Production rate is being raised from 18/yr to 24/yr. With the Blk 3, they'll have IFR, HMD, tandem pylons, ALCMs and possibly AESA. All capabilities that flow back to serving aircraft save for the IFR probe which will be retrofitted by 2022 IIRC and the AESA at a later stage.
Its the same story world over. F-16 deliveries totalled 300 aircraft before it was equipped with a night vision configured cockpit, and had 1,800 units
in service before it got a BVR weapon. The Rafale and Eurofighter had respectively about 100 & 150 aircraft in service before they got basic precision strike capability (a capability the Tejas already
has today). The F-35 program has delivered some 150 fighters with USAF IOC still 12 months away. The F-22 which IOCed in 2005, won't have an HMS till about 2020.
But in the Tejas' case, investment in scaled-up production ought to be deferred until every last bit
of FOC capability has been demonstrated in practice??!! Even if, objectively speaking, only a few months worth of integration work is pending (and that too mostly on account of delayed deliveries from Cobham).