Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

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Philip
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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby Philip » 07 May 2021 09:44

Some v.sad news.AM PM Ramachandran former vice-chief of the IAF passed away in Chennai.He was 86.A v.distinguished career.Awarded the Shourya Chakra in '61 for destroying the Portugese patrol vessel NRP Vega and other ops. He was also the first pilot outside the USSR to fly the MIG-25 Foxbat in 1979.As vice-chief he was responsible for the induction of the Prithvi BM.He also headed the Jag Darin programme and held many other important posts in the IAF.

AM Ramu,as he was better known, told me in person some years ago about the reasons for the delay in the LCA programme and its long gestation. Fundamental issue ,failure of the Kaveri engine, GTRE misled even APJ Kalaam on the issue. His appointment as Dir.Gen. of the AdA repeatedly selected for the job,was finally even by the then PM ,but babudom who did not want an IAF man to be DG, saw to it that it was delayed until he retired. The tale has been told earlier in detail. Thus there was no real head of the ADA to push the programme. AM P.Rajkumar who went to Russia with Ramu to fly the MIG-27 as well, once said ,not sure if it's in his book too,that had Ramu been appointed DG,the history of the LCA programme would've been different.RIP great son of India.

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby Manish_P » 07 May 2021 13:31

Om Shanti

2 days back there was news of a prominent scientist Shri Manas Verma who was associated with the Tejas, also passing away.

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby Kartik » 10 May 2021 18:10

Jaguar IB DARIN 3 twin seater

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby Kartik » 10 May 2021 18:12

Jaguar IS DARIN 3 during take-off

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby jamwal » 10 May 2021 19:17

Simulation video of Indian air strikes on Pakistani terrorist camps in Balakot I made.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HrJOrTYaZCw


Simulation of Indian air strikes against Pakistani terrorists in Balakot, Feb 2019. Blue units are Indian, red are Pakistani. The small text box shows type of unit (like Mirage-2000, Mig-21), Callsign (like the Phalcon AWACS is called Chakshu), 3 digit number is height in feet multiplied by 100 (for example 240 means 24000 feet) and last number is speed in mach.

4 Mirages took off from Gwalior, refueled by a Midas tanker south of J&K and then crossed LoC in northern Jammu to drop laser guided bombs on the islamist terrorist camp. Other units involved in the mission were Mig-21s from Srinagar, Mig-29s from Pathankot, Su-30s from Jodhpur and 8-12 Mirages configured for air-to-air role. Support elements included aIL-76 Midas tanker Netra and Phalcon AWACS. Latter was probably not involved, but I used it for fun.

Some details like the bombs used are not exact because of software limitations. I'll probably try to make a better version in future. Created using Command Modern Operations and Tacview.

Wasn't there a thread on Balakot strikes?

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby Manish_P » 11 May 2021 16:30

A warrior departs. Om Shanti!

1971 Indo-Pak war veteran Anil Bhalla dies of Covid-19

Squadron Leader Anil Bhalla (Retd), who as a young Flying Officer flew MiG-21 sorties during the 1971 Indo-Pak war, has died after battling coronavirus, his family sources said on Tuesday.

The 74-year-old flying ace, a native of Mumbai, died on Monday night at Hyderabad where he had settled after retirement from the Air Force in 1984, the sources said.

During the 1971 war, he flew several "active attack missions" to heavily defended targets like the Governor House in Dhaka, which became instrumental in forcing Pakistan's surrender, a former colleague said.

Sqn Ldr Bhalla was also the youngest Flying Officer to get the Master Green IR (instrument rating), awarded to pilots who have displayed superior airmanship. It recognises a higher level of experience and accomplishment in instrument flying.

He was also a qualified flying instructor at the fighter training wing at Hakeempet.

The air veteran, who had a successful career in the construction business after retirement from the Air Force, is survived by wife, a son and two daughters.

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby jamwal » 12 May 2021 00:48

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RH1Wp-P1TyE
Indian #surgicalstrike on Balakot.
Since previous video was pretty bad, I am making one with a few more details and voice over. It is full 1920x1080 resolution, so text will be readable, hopefully. Excuse the voice and background noise. Full video will be on youtube.

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby Deans » 12 May 2021 12:51

For IAF enthusiasts, the blue skies podcast is a great source of info - direct from veterans.
https://blueskiespodcast.com/

This was the initiative of a batchmate of mine (the son of late Air Marshal Ramachandran) and the first few episodes have been well received.
The voices are sometimes difficult to follow, but that is to be expected given the ages of the speakers.

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby Manish_P » 12 May 2021 13:23

^ W-o-w

Thanks very much for sharing this !!

This goes straight into my pre-bed time schedule..

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby jamwal » 12 May 2021 17:41

Complete simulation video of Indian raid on Balakot terrorist camp up now. Added the mission planning stage with audio explanation plus the 3D view.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=65nbBaW5SJs

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby Kartik » 13 May 2021 18:52

Jaguar DARIN III in primer..looks damn good! Can see the retractable IFR probe outlined

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby Philip » 18 May 2021 23:05

X-posted from the Intl. td. News of a poss. US progr. for a hypersonic Mach 6 strat. bomber,the SR-72.The issue is the lack of a dedicated strat. bomber for the IAF.

One is not asking for a hyper Mach 6 bomber for the IAF.A supersonic bomber capability would do.What we lack is a strategic bomber to counter the dozens that China has albeit of Sov. era vintage.There is a limit to what even an SS can do.It does not have the legs of a dedicated strat. bomber,and requires refuelling even for Malacca strikes operating from the mainland as was demonstrated 2 years ago,carrying just one BMos ASM.. The 12,000km + reach we had with the Bear LRMP birds,still being used as frontline strat. bombers/LRMP duties by the RuAF and RuN,disappeared after their retirement. While the P-8Is are doing a fine job as far as ASW is concerned,the LR strike capability has vanished as P-8Is carry only subsonic Harpoon ASMs of a few hundred KMs range.The Ghatak UCAV will have precious little internal space for weaponry,and will be used mainly as a tactical weapon system against Pak and China.
After the retirement of our Canberras,the IAF just forgot about the bomber req. Dozens of TU-22 Backfires were offered to us for a song by the Sovs.,after the '71 war, but myopic ACM PC Lal reportedly ignored the offer.

In the context of the Ladakh crisis,the PRC has wisely kept its reserves some distance away from the LAC,out of range of our fighters,yet given the flat terrain of Tibet,easy to despatch to any hotspot of their choosing.how they took us by surprise when the balloon went up.We need to be able to send strat. bombers well into the Indo-China Sea, Tibet,etc., equipped with a heavy load of LR stand-off ASMs,to strike key targets and the PLAN.Remember how the Japanese sank the Prince of Wales and Repulse in WW2 off the Malayan coast through air attacks.One strat LR bomber could carry a dozen or so supersonic LR ASMs and in the future hypersonic BMos too. Current LR Missiles like BMos that can be carried by our strike fighters will have ranges in the future of only around 450km max. when air-launched. Nirbhay is still a system in the works,and the Agni series are dedicated strat. deterrent weapons.Neither the Super Sukhoi,SU-57,or any other strike fighter around today can replace a dedicated strat. bomber,which could deliver both conventional PGMs plus N-weapons,why the RUs are developing their PAK-DA and the US continuing itsmanned and unmanned strat. bomber operations and programmes,still using even vintage B-52s programmes.

The argument that only the superpowerrs need a strat. bomber is invalid today. I give you the fact that the PRC is fast establishing military bases around the IOR rim,from Djibouti,Gwadar,Hambantota,the E.African coast,W.African coast (!),Iran,all over the Indo-China Sea, with ambitions even in the Meditt. how will we be able to strike and destroy these bases out of range with our currenrt aircraft from which our entire maritime trade,merchant fleet ,especially our oil and gas tankers will be at risk? We will have but just 2 CVs with limited aircraft aboard,plus our Kilo subs cannot carry more than 4 Klub/Kalibir missiles. Our P-8Is will be v.busy hunting for China and Paki subs. I mentioned recently how many numbers of aircraft,ships and UW assets are required to prosecute just one sub! The on-going Gaza spat shows that even Israel has had to make hundreds of repeated air strikes to deal with that pestilential entity Hamas and the job still hasn't been completed.

What aircraft we should acquire is left to the strat. defence planners. Even B-52s would be fine!

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby ks_sachin » 19 May 2021 06:27

Philip wrote:X-posted from the Intl. td. News of a poss. US progr. for a hypersonic Mach 6 strat. bomber,the SR-72.The issue is the lack of a dedicated strat. bomber for the IAF.

One is not asking for a hyper Mach 6 bomber for the IAF.A supersonic bomber capability would do.What we lack is a strategic bomber to counter the dozens that China has albeit of Sov. era vintage.There is a limit to what even an SS can do.It does not have the legs of a dedicated strat. bomber,and requires refuelling even for Malacca strikes operating from the mainland as was demonstrated 2 years ago,carrying just one BMos ASM.. The 12,000km + reach we had with the Bear LRMP birds,still being used as frontline strat. bombers/LRMP duties by the RuAF and RuN,disappeared after their retirement. While the P-8Is are doing a fine job as far as ASW is concerned,the LR strike capability has vanished as P-8Is carry only subsonic Harpoon ASMs of a few hundred KMs range.The Ghatak UCAV will have precious little internal space for weaponry,and will be used mainly as a tactical weapon system against Pak and China.
After the retirement of our Canberras,the IAF just forgot about the bomber req. Dozens of TU-22 Backfires were offered to us for a song by the Sovs.,after the '71 war, but myopic ACM PC Lal reportedly ignored the offer.

In the context of the Ladakh crisis,the PRC has wisely kept its reserves some distance away from the LAC,out of range of our fighters,yet given the flat terrain of Tibet,easy to despatch to any hotspot of their choosing.how they took us by surprise when the balloon went up.We need to be able to send strat. bombers well into the Indo-China Sea, Tibet,etc., equipped with a heavy load of LR stand-off ASMs,to strike key targets and the PLAN.Remember how the Japanese sank the Prince of Wales and Repulse in WW2 off the Malayan coast through air attacks.One strat LR bomber could carry a dozen or so supersonic LR ASMs and in the future hypersonic BMos too. Current LR Missiles like BMos that can be carried by our strike fighters will have ranges in the future of only around 450km max. when air-launched. Nirbhay is still a system in the works,and the Agni series are dedicated strat. deterrent weapons.Neither the Super Sukhoi,SU-57,or any other strike fighter around today can replace a dedicated strat. bomber,which could deliver both conventional PGMs plus N-weapons,why the RUs are developing their PAK-DA and the US continuing itsmanned and unmanned strat. bomber operations and programmes,still using even vintage B-52s programmes.

The argument that only the superpowerrs need a strat. bomber is invalid today. I give you the fact that the PRC is fast establishing military bases around the IOR rim,from Djibouti,Gwadar,Hambantota,the E.African coast,W.African coast (!),Iran,all over the Indo-China Sea, with ambitions even in the Meditt. how will we be able to strike and destroy these bases out of range with our currenrt aircraft from which our entire maritime trade,merchant fleet ,especially our oil and gas tankers will be at risk? We will have but just 2 CVs with limited aircraft aboard,plus our Kilo subs cannot carry more than 4 Klub/Kalibir missiles. Our P-8Is will be v.busy hunting for China and Paki subs. I mentioned recently how many numbers of aircraft,ships and UW assets are required to prosecute just one sub! The on-going Gaza spat shows that even Israel has had to make hundreds of repeated air strikes to deal with that pestilential entity Hamas and the job still hasn't been completed.

What aircraft we should acquire is left to the strat. defence planners. Even B-52s would be fine!


Field Marshall Filipov can you choose between more kilos, the Armata, Spurt and the Strategic bombers or do you know of something in the MoD that we mere mortals and members of the proletariat do not know off.

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby Philip » 19 May 2021 14:39

Comrade Sachin, I have no army rank! Nevertheless, my mantra has always been " horses for courses" and "cut your coat
according to your cloth".

Yes,there are hundreds of hungry mouths to feed in the services,but establishing priorities needs to be made first,keeping in mind the current and future threats. The US has firmly established that the greatest danger to it is the unprecedented and increasing pace of the expansion of the PLAN.Like a devouring cancer on the rage,the Chin naval expansion in all dimensions has stunned even US analysts. The US is now on a desperate mission to upgrade and expand its shipbuilding
capability to try and catch up with the Chins. What must we do to stem the tidal wave on the verge of entering our backyard? News just in is that the Lankan SC has given the green light for the Chin Port City project to proceed,where a tiny coterie of individuals determine ALL the rules governing the Macau-like enclave-to-be, which will be totally under Chin control forever.

Our choices are stark. In the Himalayas we can stop the Chins and bloody their noses causing v.high casualties to them thanks to Himalayan ranges and the IA.It will cost us heavily though to maintain a large standing presence there, but we will have to find a compromise between high-tech solutions like UCAVs,etc. and manpower. As I said earlier,the Chins basing the bulk of their forces just outside the range of our current strikefighters on the Tibetan plateau gives them an advantage.Our tanker fleet is also limited in number to refuel our MKIs sufficiently as their payloads are limited.IAF lusting after ultra-expensive A-330s has been repeatedly shot down. The new upgraded totally Ru built IL-78s costing just 25% of an A-330 ,is the sensible solution as the same IL-76 platform has been chosen for the extra Phalcon AWACS. But leasing appears the current option with low funds.With an LR strat. bomber,we will be able to hit the Chin theatre command centres too at stand-off distances too.

Similarly,Chin military outposts in the IOR littoral ,plus Indo- China Sea as spelt out earlier, require a LR bomber equipped with 10+ LR ASMs,or other conventional weaponry to destroy naval assets as well as shore establishments. Both the IN and IAF require such a capability.The ability to hit the PRC deep inits own backyard is now a prime neccessity. As with Akulas,etc. strat. bombers can be leased too. With the IN's 29Ks doing yeomanservice in the Himalayas,so too cam say theoretically, IN strat. bombers like upgraded Backfires- cheaper than Blackjacks, do the biz. in Tibet, if we can buy/ lease enough for only one service.

The sub req. can be debated in the appropriate td. Suffice it to say it is the most dangerous element of the PLAN which will require huge assets to counter. Another debate.

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby mody » 21 May 2021 15:05

Mig -21 Bison crashes pilot Sq. Ldr. Abhinav Chaudhary killed :-(

https://www.msn.com/en-in/news/other/mi ... uxbndlbing

Increase the orders for Tejas MK1A by 2 squadrons and increase the current production rate to 24 per annum by 2023. That's the only way to get rid of the old aircrafts.
Naliya, Suratgarh, Jaiselmer, Srinagar, Sirsa, Leh should all get a squadron of Tejas MK1/MK1A. Other likely bases may be Halwara, Pathankot and Bhatinda.

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby Aditya_V » 21 May 2021 15:22

The additional capex will definitely be worth it with what the Tejas provides and the el 2032 have much azimuth than the kopyo on the.Mig 21 nose and Derby have lock after launch capability which would have very useful to our pilots on 27-Feb-19

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby hemant_sai » 21 May 2021 16:39

1] For 2004-2014 era what IAF leadership was exactly planning?
Was it really all about money that stopped us from getting Mig-21 interim replacements?

2] "The initial goal was to replace the ageing IAF fighters by early 1990s, especially the MiG-21 variants......
...delay caused uncertainty in the original schedule (of LCA project) which called for first flight in April 1990 and service entry in 1995..
..."

Why IAF leadership was only focused on MMRCA? Why there was no plan-B for Mig-21 replacement if Tejas gets delayed?

3] Why FA-50 was not considered in 2009-2014 period by IAF for Mig21 replacement?

"Korea Aerospace Industries was awarded a $600m contract by the Defence Acquisition Programme Administration (DAPA) in December 2011 for the production and supply of 20 KAI FA-50 aircraft to the ROKAF by 2014"

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby LakshmanPST » 21 May 2021 19:04

We may want many things to happen but nothing is going to change...
I'm reposting one if my earlier posts...
-
From 2019 to 2029, IAF has retired/is planning to retire thd following jets:-
2 Sqdns of MIG27 (already retired)
6 Sqdns of MIG21
3 Sqdns of Jaguars
Total 11 Squadrons to be retired...
-
They will induct/have inducted the following:-
2 Sqdns Tejas Mk1
2 Sqdns Su30 MKI
2 Sqdns Rafale
1 Sqdn MIG29
4 Sqdns Tejas Mk1A
Total 11 squadrons to be inducted...
----
Out of the new squadrons coming up,
One Su30 squadron is already raised in Thanjavur, 2nd one will mostly be raised in Eastern sector (Chabua probably)...
2 Rafale squadrons will be ready by 2022, one in Western sector and one in Eastern sector...
Tejas will move to Rajasthan and Srinagar and will be fully ready by 2022/23...
One MIG29 squadron will also be raised by 2025 and will be based in Western sector...
And Tejas Mk1A squadrons will start being raised from 2025 at rate of 1 squadron per year and all of them will be in Western sector only...

So, even by 2025 you will have enough replacements for 4 Bison squadrons in Western sector...
So, we can expect retirement of Bisons to commence 2023 or 2024 itself...
----
2 squadrons of MRFA may also come in this decade, but I doubt it is going to go anywhere... If things go well, we may see MRFA cancelled and 2-3 more squadrons of Rafale ordered as well...
Tejas Mk2 is not going come in numbers this decade...
----
So, while situation is bad, it is not going to get any worse... It will only get better from 2022 onwards...
Yes, damage is already done by not ordering Tejas earlier and in larger numbers... But it can not be changed now...
IAF won't be ordering more Mk1 or Mk1A either... They'll stick with the current plans...

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby Vivek K » 21 May 2021 19:51

An opportunity has been missed in terms of replacing ageing hardware with Tejas quicker. Very sad to lose Squadron Leadwr Chaudhary! Om Shanti!

IAF should demand quicker replacement of Mig-21s. More MK1s could be a solution but the production capacity is lagging.

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby Philip » 21 May 2021 23:36

V.tragic to lose yet another pilot to a 50+ yr. old fighter being kept in service thanks to a combination of political,babu,DRDO and service conflict.
As to the IAF's search for a successor to the MIG-21s,at least 10 years ago there was posted the writings of a former Air Cmde. who narrated the story of the Bison. The LCA programme was launched around 35+ years ag0 when RG was in power, with little involvement of the IAF. The IAF set up a team to study the project which came to the conclusion that the ADA ,etc. would never be able to meet the highly ambitious timeframe because the advanced tech did not exist within the country,nor was it likely to be easily developed in the span of time given for development.
We had no engine tech,composites,FBW,etc.To cut a long story short,the then air chief took urgent steps to meet the inevitable failure of the LCA to arrive and began the Bison programme,to upgrade the last series of 21s built in India the MIG-21Bis ,using a cocktail of desi and firang components to vastly improve its capability. The Bison programme was a huge success,as it proved at the first COPE-India air exercises with the USAF.

Sadly,neither extra M2Ks or MIG-29s (over a hundred were offered to us for peanuts said AM Masand,even an SE version of the MKI,light fighter for just $3M a pop) were ordered or licence built,in retrospect a tragic error.
Despite the added time,the LCA prog.struggled to bear fruit. The recently deceased ex-VCoAS,AM Ramachandran told me personally how APJAK was deceived by the GTRE promising Kaveri "in a few months " decades ago.Despite his warning to him that the GTRE were bluffing,.APJAK believed them. He then stated publicly in 2003 that "by 2013,200+ LCAs would be flying"! almost two decades on,how many LCAs do we have in service? Around 20 perhaps? Just 1/10th of what we were promised a decade ago. Realising this inevitable further delay in the LCA arriving,the services,govt. and MOD then launched the ambitious MMRCA contest. Another error was made clubbing both SE light fighters with TE med. fighters,as the IAF's desire for the "latest and bestest" firang fighter took precedence over the humble desi sparrow. There's little point going over the story of the Rafale being chosen and a miniscule order placed after years of negotiations thanks to huge costs. It finally dawned on the IAF top brass that ultimately the LCA was its best hope,and that of indigenous Indian future fightes to come. However, urther LCA delays have resurrected MMRCA 2.0 !

Therefore,while LCA production struggles to increase at faster pace with an improved Mk-1A,and the MMRCA 2.0 crusade taking even longer time than the first crusade, the Bison still does yeoman service. post Balakot even shooting down a {aki F-16,but given the age of the bird and difficulty of keeping it operational,accidents like the latest will inevitably happen until the last Bison is proudly and mercifully retired.

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby hemant_sai » 22 May 2021 00:40

Thanks Philip Sir for this interesting history.

If APJAK can be deceived by DRDO labs/establishments then it is not fair to blame our regular political ministers or we should not expect much from them in terms of sorting the clutter.

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby basant » 22 May 2021 03:16

If APJ could be made to believe in the assured timelines, it would be an indictment of DRDO, scientific community, and himself.

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby S_Madhukar » 22 May 2021 04:20

Madhavan from that movie Rang de Basanti has grey hair now and yet the Mig21s are culling our brave hearts… I think just climbing into one deserves a medal now . I wonder if there are genuine plans for the fleet in the future decades or will the SUs be the new MiGs. We respect our elders as a culture but I wish they respected their younger pilots too

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby gpurewal » 22 May 2021 04:34

Philip wrote: The recently deceased ex-VCoAS,AM Ramachandran told me personally how APJAK was deceived by the GTRE promising Kaveri "in a few months " decades ago.Despite his warning to him that the GTRE were bluffing,.APJAK believed them. .


Just a few follow up questions Philip.

Was it a single person or a team from GTRE that duped APJAK? is this person or team still employed with GTRE? Was there political pressure on GTRE to lie to the Chief Scientific Adviser to the PM at that time?

To pull such a maneuver off on such a brilliant man, means that APJAK respected the source that was telling him the misinformation, which would mean the level of corruption in GTRE was (is it still?) pretty heinous.

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby Vivek K » 22 May 2021 06:34

The whole MMRCA nautanki is to blame for the mess IAF is in. They wanted to go up to 150 M2Ks but it turned into a circus with 6 types and finally the French successor to the M2K, the Rafale was selected. But it took 20 years to get to that point. And trying to sustain a high performance aircraft like the Mig-21 without a domestic industry is foolish. The investment in pilots is far more than the machines they fly. And flying 60s tech in 2021 is just sad. Granted some of the techs of the bisons is upgraded and the crashes are fewer, but we need to invest in a self sustaining industry instead of lusting after every new foreign design. Roosi Rakshaks lusting for their motherland's hardware notwithstanding, India cannot afford to continue to lose pilots because of hard to maintain imports. Let us write the right epitaph for the brave warrior by investing in the LCA. God bless our pilots and keep each one of them safe from harm.

Richard II - Act 2 Scene 1 - very applicable here to import rakshaks (roosi, francissi, amreeki, angrezi....)

As praises, of whose taste the wise are fond;
Lascivious meters, to whose venom sound
The open ear of youth doth always listen;
Report of fashions in proud Italy,
Whose manners still our tardy-apish nation
Limps after in base imitation.
Where doth the world thrust forth a vanity—
So it be new, there’s no respect how vile


So long as it is new, we lust for it, no matter how vile or damaging to our economy or industry!

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby srai » 22 May 2021 08:51

Philip, gpurewal, hemant_sai,

Judging by your recent posts one can assume that you guys don’t have R&D or technology development backgrounds.

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby ks_sachin » 22 May 2021 17:08

srai wrote:Philip, gpurewal, hemant_sai,

Judging by your recent posts one can assume that you guys don’t have R&D or technology development backgrounds.

Ah. But they do have an opinion...

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby Cain Marko » 22 May 2021 17:24

The Tejas mk1 should've been ordered en masse. At least 126 nos. Around 2015-16. Followed by 126 mj1a. Followed by 126-200 MK2.

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby Philip » 23 May 2021 00:12

Who says one doesn't? That's what HAL belatedly discovered more than two years ago that production of Tejas was another tech. development effort in itself! The IAF had for decades complained about HAL quality of MIG-21s, to no avail. A couple of years ago the IAF reportedly said that manuals weren't available. The LCA's difficulties in major part stems from the fact that a small light fighter with limited space within the airframe has been according to one previous report, overstuffed with components as the aim was to make the bird a "pocket " M2K, not merely a MIG-21 replacement.

Mk-1 first tranche was forced upon a reluctant IAF which said it was unable to meet its performance parameters with the GE-404, , with the promise
that the 1A with the 414 ,AESA radar,refuelling probe,etc.,would do the biz, IAF happy now after putting the 1 through its paces. Two LCA lines are now functioning,but at least a combined total of 24 to 30 a year is reqd. to replace the MIG-27s,older MIG-21s and Bisons in the future.

However,the great achievement has been in ultimately getting the programme into series production. After decades ,we have a desi fighter to emulate the HF-24. What is equally a cause for celebration is the rapid development of its weaponry, universal across the fleet Astra BVR AAM ,PGMs, glide bombs, an anti-radar and ASM, and to come BMos- NG. The IAF must now be eagerly waiting for as many Tejas birds as possible to replace the legacy Bisons.

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby Philip » 23 May 2021 00:53

GP, AM Ramu said that he told APJAK at that review meeting that the key component ,the engine, Kaveri at that time, had repeatedly failed when tested on an Ru platform. I once had the opportunity to ask APJAK about this and his statement in 2003, much later on, but didn't want to embarass him as a few others were present . APJAK was a great rocket/missile scientist. The nation owes a priceless debt to him., why our strat. BMs all have the letter "K". Aero-engines may not have been his forte why he relied upon other experts. At the time AM Ramu briefed me about the programme's history, he said that his emphasis about finalising the engine first was finally being done, dumping the Kaveri for the GE- 404.

It is a matter of record that despite repeated announcements by the GTRE about the imminent arrival of the engine, like Godot, it never arrived .Neither did a promised maritime version much touted a decade ago, we still use UKR GTs for our Talwar FFGs ,GE GTs for the Shivaliks, etc. Then we were told that our super-secret UCAV would have Kaveri winging it to bomb the daylights out of our enemies. Little news of that too! 40 years on it is a sad reflection that not one engine has come out of the GTRE stables. Why so is best known to the powers that be, especially the DRDO and MOD. Was enough funding and push given to it?

Two decades ago, BRF was debating the need of setting up a new engine R&D entity to design and develop a wide range of engines for both fixed wing an rotary engines. One in hindsight cannot blame the GTRE totally, they were focussed upon developing only one engine for the LCA, but the easy availability of licence building at home of several engines for MIGs,etc., including some of our missiles, perhaps pushed the development of indigenous high- performance aero-engines for fighters to a lower priority. At that time too, the IAF were lukewarm about the LCA , thumbing through brochures lusting after the next western filly they could acquire and induct.! Meanwhile we are still "Waiting for Godot."
Last edited by Philip on 23 May 2021 01:30, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby basant » 23 May 2021 01:28

Much water has flown under the bridge, sadly there is more. Countless posts from various points of view have been discussed over the years in these forums. The problem, IMHO, is unresolved but less serious today. There is no way APJAK would have believed in those time lines, he was diligent in his work. To begin with, the initial timelines were probably not enough even to test and qualify assuming that the engine meet sepcs. GTRE got pittance to develop the engine, LCA got too little support for many years. These facts are well-documented and available in public domain. LCA itself, underbudgeted as it was, had to go through 2 IOCs. IAF could have placed the order earlier so that supply chains could have been in place, could have ordered higher number for Mk1A. Instead Mk1A happened only as a compromise due to the rare fortune of MoD to have MP as Defence Minister and that the jet was anyway a mean machine. Some of the delays for certifications were alluded to preparation of manuals.

What bothers me is that, even today I am not sure of the total commitment from IAF towards the project which as anyone can see is inevitable. Same from ADA/HAL. I would be happy if I am wrong, but I am sure that I am not. The timelines for TEDBF, for instance, are too fantastic given that it is our first attempt to fly a twin engine fighter and it doesn't accommodate the timelines for completion of testing and qualification of modern jets. Reason for my skepticism has its foundations in failing deadlines for jets even after TD-1. If one recalls, with every delivery there would be a statement saying, 'now that we know what is takes...', followed by delays. The same is peddled for TEDBF, which BTW is a naval jet.

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby Philip » 23 May 2021 03:12

B,sadly,I share your scepticism with the v.ambitious timelines for iur desi fighters-to-come.Even after a few decades,the JSF has yet to be fully perfected,its ALIS system problematic,etc. even after being inducted into service with some performance limitations.
With now 3 med. size fighters in service, M2K,MIG-29 and Rafale, surely extra numbers of any or two of these,the M2K out of prod., would be a faster and more cost-effective way to equip the IAF instead of running 3 aircraft projects simultaneously,the Tejas Mk-2, TEDBF when IAC-2 of 65K t even if ordered now will take at least 10 years to arrive, and the 29Ks still have at least 2 decades of life in them. An upgraded version to approx. MIG-35 std. would again be a better bet than the costly TEDBF for a small tranche of just around 40 to 50 aircraft.

We have v.limited resources ,esp. after the CV pandemic sucking out money like a dyson vac. Our concerted focus and effort should instead be on the AMCA and the stealthy UCAV programme to arrive by the decade-end. Most major air forces are developing UCAVs to operate in conjunction with manned fighters and the same has been unveiled for the LCA. Until then for the IAF,more MKIs, Rafales ,MIG-29s and LCAs- ramping up production, should suffice. A new report about the PLAAFs new base facilities for its awaited stealth bomber should Also turn the IAF's eyes towards the yaning gap in its inventory.

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby Vivek K » 23 May 2021 08:19

MK1 orders should have been placed in 2015-2016 instead of the current grudging order for MK1A. We need to all say a prayer for the bravest of brave like Sqdrn Ldr Abhinav Chaudhary! Please God give our leaders the wisdom to provide the finest equipment to our brave pilots and not make them fly obsolete aircraft that endanger their lives. Ad dear God, please protect every one of our pilots - may they live their full lives and make us proud.

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby Venky36 » 23 May 2021 09:04

Fortunate to have known him and family for the past 10 yrs as I stay in a gated community developed by him. A fine officer and gentleman who lived life to the full. Om Shanti


[quote="Manish_P"]A warrior departs. Om Shanti!

[url=https://www.mid-day.com/mumbai/mumbai-news/article/mumbai-1971-indo-pak-war-veteran-anil-bhalla-dies-of-covid-19-23172812]1971 Indo-Pak war veteran Anil Bhalla dies of Covid-19[/url]

[quote]Squadron Leader Anil Bhalla (Retd), who as a young Flying Officer flew MiG-21 sorties during the 1971 Indo-Pak war, has died after battling coronavirus, his family sources said on Tuesday.

The 74-year-old flying ace, a native of Mumbai, died on Monday night at Hyderabad where he had settled after retirement from the Air Force in 1984, the sources said.

During the 1971 war, he flew several "active attack missions" to heavily defended targets like the Governor House in Dhaka, which became instrumental in forcing Pakistan's surrender, a former colleague said.

Sqn Ldr Bhalla was also the youngest Flying Officer to get the Master Green IR (instrument rating), awarded to pilots who have displayed superior airmanship. It recognises a higher level of experience and accomplishment in instrument flying.

He was also a qualified flying instructor at the fighter training wing at Hakeempet.

The air veteran, who had a successful career in the construction business after retirement from the Air Force, is survived by wife, a son and two daughters.
[/quote][/quote]

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby Philip » 23 May 2021 13:48

V.sad to lose a great veteran to CV. May his soul find eternal peace.

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby Vivek K » 23 May 2021 22:52

Om Shanti! The brave embrace veergati! So long braveheart and thank you for your service to the nation.

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby Vips » 24 May 2021 01:34

180 Pilots lost in crashes and counting....
If Pilots with Squadron leader and even Wing Commander's rank with thousands of hours of flying experience are losing their lives then certainly majority of the Mig21 jets are crashing not due to pilot error but some other reason. What is it? Lack of maintenance or sub standard parts?

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby titash » 24 May 2021 02:14

Vips wrote:180 Pilots lost in crashes and counting....
If Pilots with Squadron leader and even Wing Commander's rank with thousands of hours of flying experience are losing their lives then certainly majority of the Mig21 jets are crashing not due to pilot error but some other reason. What is it? Lack of maintenance or sub standard parts?


There’s a simple reason. It’s the age of the machine.

A car is a sum of its sub-systems and components. As components age, oil & grease trap dirt, fasteners get jammed, metal rusts & thins out, fabric rips, leather becomes brittle, glass clouds, and displays get burn-in. That’s the reality.

Maintenance is always performed to specifications, so the weekly / monthly / annual PM passes a set of checks. It does NOT restore components and sub systems to their original pristine condition and it does not improve system reliability to its original levels.

System reliability, sub-system reliability, and component reliability ALWAYS degrades after being operationalized. No amount of maintenance will overcome the ravages of time, weather, dirt, and human mishandling.

My 2007 Camry is not as reliable as it was back in 2009-10 timeframe. And that’s irrespective of how much money I throw at it during maintenance cycles at dealerships. The reality is ALL components age and fail at different times of the year, leading to overall higher failure rates.

And that is for a 2007 Camry. I retain a 1995 Mazda for sentimental reasons and it’s on a rare day that I can get it moving without one issue or the other. Now, imagine how difficult it is to maintain a 50-60 year old flying machine with no OEM support

The solution? Buy new homemade fighters and replace them every 20 years like the Brits & Germans do. If you don’t have the budget, then maintain them to the best of your ability and accept the occasional loss. That’s the reality

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby srai » 24 May 2021 07:38

Philip wrote:...

It finally dawned on the IAF top brass that ultimately the LCA was its best hope,and that of indigenous Indian future fightes to come. However, urther LCA delays have resurrected MMRCA 2.0 !

...


LCA and MMRCA are two different categories. Over the last two decades, the IAF preference evolved to possess more of medium category fighters than the light ones. That is the main reason LCA has received limited orders (2+4 sqdn).

If addressing squadron shortage was the main priority, then a lot more Tejas Mk1 should have been ordered. In the long run, the production would have smoothed out and continuous deliveries at a peak rate would have occurred between 2022 and 2030. IMO, four squadron of Mk1 and another six of Mk1A would have stabilized the fleet numbers for a cost of around $10-12 billion.

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Re: Indian Air Force News & Discussion - 23 March 2021

Postby Philip » 27 May 2021 01:06

Found this recent report about the MIG-21 crash,etc.

https://eurasiantimes.com/former-mig-21 ... -in-india/

Xcpts:
MiG-21 Crash: Former Pilot Takes A Dig At HAL; Says Dassault Rightly Rejected Local Manufacturing Of Rafale Jets In India
By
Younis Dar
May 22, 2021
The Indian Air Force (IAF) reported yet another crash involving a MiG-21 Bison aircraft on Friday near the western sector in Punjab. The pilot, Squadron Leader Abhinav Choudhary, who had reportedly ejected, could not survive the crash, a statement from the IAF said.


The delay in the induction of the indigenous Tejas light combat aircraft (LCA) has forced the IAF to continue to operate four MiG-21 `Bison’ squadrons. Under a new deal signed in February this year for Rs 46,898 crore with HAL, IAF expects to induct 83 new Tejas jets between February 2024 and December 2028. The force already operates around 40 such fighters which have been delivered to it earlier.

India’s LCA project, approved in August 1983, was envisioned to replace the Russian MiG-21s and has dragged on for decades. The delay has meant the dwindling squadron strength of the IAF continues to worsen and operate older aircraft, which originally needs at least 42 squadrons and is only left with around 31-32.

IAF Pilots Speak On MiG-21 Jets.
Although the overall record of the MiG-21s shows they have been relatively safer to fly, there has been raging criticism lately on whether India should finally retire the vintage fleet.

“Modern aircraft such as LCA, Jaguar, and Su-30MKI are a lot easier to fly than old generation aircraft because of electronics such as Head-Up Display.

They are also safer to fly because of twin-engine safety, fly-by-wire flight controls, etc. Because of improvement in materials, the components that go into modern aircraft have a much longer life and are less prone to failure,” says the former IAF pilot Vijainder K Thakur told the EurAsian Times.

Nearly all the former fighter pilots we spoke to said there was no question of reliability when it came to the old Russian fighter. Much of the problems the IAF is facing also relates to operating and maintaining the fleets of old fighter aircraft.

“As to the MiG-21s in the IAF, there was a time when the best IAF pilots would be picked to fly the aircraft. Today, the best are likely chosen to fly fighters such as the Su-30MKIs, LCA, Rafale, and Jaguars that are more potent.”

“Spares for the MiG-21 are not easily available in the global market. QA (Quality Assurance) is an issue. QA is also an issue with locally manufactured spares. HAL is not known for its workmanship.

There was a good reason why France refused to take responsibility for local manufacture of the Rafale jets,” the veteran pilot adds.

Earlier, the feeble track record of Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) had dimmed India’s plan to buy 126 Rafale jets after Dassault Aviation were not too confident with the expertise of HAL to produce an advanced jet.

Under the bid provision, 108 of the 126 aircraft are to be built by HAL, while the remaining would be supplied by Dassault Aviation directly.

During the negotiations, Dassault had refused to take responsibility for the jets that would be produced by HAL, though it will give product support. It insisted on signing separate contracts for 108 and 18 aircraft.

Meanwhile, Thakur says that the challenge with India’s flagship Make-in-India is that the IAF represents a very limited market.

“Order quantities don’t facilitate high-quality, low-cost manufacture. What is happening with the MiG-21s could eventually happen with the LCA, probably with shorter timelines since LCA Tejas spare will not be available in the global market.”


On a question, of whether it was the right time for the Indian government to end the dilemma of retiring the aging Russian jets, he said the MiG-21 squadrons represent a very limited operational capability. “Their existence in the IAF has more to do with securing turf/ establishment rather than securing the skies.”

If one looks at the percentage of yearly loss of fighter aircraft with the IAF, the MiG-21 comes at the bottom with just a .55 percent peacetime attrition rate in 58 years, with other aircraft being far above on the queue.

As reported in our earlier article, MiG-21s have been crashing at a rate of 4.67 aircraft a year (out of total strength of 872).

The MiG-21s are extremely reliable aircraft. They have rarely experienced engine problems, says another veteran IAF pilot Rajiv Tyagi. “Why would you doubt its reliability? You cannot find one MiG-21 pilot anywhere in the world who will say otherwise,” he says.


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