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'Make in India' Single engined fighter

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Austin » 09 Oct 2017 09:48

Plans for the joint production of the Gripen NG fighter in Brazil

October 9Th, 0:55

According to the magazine "Jane's Defense Weekly" in an article by Victor Barreira entitled "Brazil reveals the Gripen production schedule, Embraer's manufacturing role" with reference to the information provided to him by the Brazilian Air Force on October 5, 2017, the Brazilian side agreed with the Swedish group Saab AB the schedule of deliveries and organization of joint production of fighter aircraft Saab JAS-39E / F Gripen NG in the framework of contact for the purchase of 36 aircraft, signed in October 2014 in the amount of $ 5.4 billion. fighter image Saab JAS-39E Gripen NG in the color of the Brazilian Air Force (a) Saab AB (via Jane's)

Image

The partner of Saab AB for the joint production of Gripen NG in Brazil will be Embraer, the Gripen NG production and integration and testing center will be established at the Embraer headquarters in Gavian Peixoto, São Paulo.

In total, Brazil ordered 28 single-seat JAS-39E fighters and eight two-seat JAS-39Fs (officially designated in the Brazilian Air Force F-39). Saab at its Swedish company in Linköping will produce 13 aircraft from this number, including 12 single and one double.

The first Saab should be built by one experienced JAS-39E aircraft (the first flight is scheduled for July 2019) and JAS-39F (first flight in October 2021), which will be used by the Brazilian side for testing and the certification process.

Then Saab will build 11 JAS-39E fighters, which must be transferred to the Brazilian side in October-November 2021.

After that, Saab will produce eight sets of JAS-39E fighter jets, which Brazilian engineers and workers are to be involved in the manufacture of. In total, more than 350 Brazilians will undergo training and training in this production program in Sweden until 2024 . Then, these eight aircraft will be assembled from the machine kits on Embraer.


After that, Embraer itself at the plant in Gavian-Peixoto as part of the joint production should completely build 15 Gripen NG fighters - eight single-seat JAS-39E and seven two-seat JAS-39F fighters. The program of their production should be launched in June 2020, with the delivery of the Brazilian Air Force to the first JAS-39E aircraft completely Brazilian built in August 2022, and the first JAS-39F - in September 2023. The last JAS-39F is scheduled for delivery in November 2024.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Chinmay » 09 Oct 2017 09:49

We are all going in circles here :) Most of us, if not all, agree that the SE fighter acquisition makes little sense, especially in the light of Tejas production and capabilities, along with the Rafale. The best solution would be a lot more Tejas + more Rafale, that much is obvious.

However the powers that be, including PM Modi, seem to be on board with the new SE fighter purchase, and so it shall be. The RFI will be out in this month, and as per the Rakesh's post, ideally the winner will be declared in 2019.

Till then, I propose that we dont discuss the SE fighter drama :P :P
Last edited by Chinmay on 10 Oct 2017 06:30, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby srai » 09 Oct 2017 09:56

^^^
Don't forget the final negotiation part with the winner on ToT, etc. Add minimum two more years to 2019 date ;)

Other factors to consider, general elections. No signatures of this magnitude happen in the final two years of GoI before elections.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Austin » 09 Oct 2017 10:21

If the IAF keen to buy the Gripen then why not directly go for G2G deal and speed up the process. Why waste time in bidding etc when both types have competed and have been tested extensively in MMRCA race surely IAF would have data for both types.

A G2G deal would make the negotiation process much faster and they could also negotiate TOT , Lic Prod and Offset equal to or better then having a competiton.

Why does a Medium fighter like F-16 would even compete with a Light Fighter like Gripen they are unequals , If F-16 is allowed to compete then so should M2K-5 and Mig-35 both types in earlier variant are in IAF service.

This looks like a fight of unequals like the MMRCA race we had where light medium heavy and singe/twin engine were allowed to compete.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Philip » 09 Oct 2017 11:14

Good point.Why the insistence on only an SE fighter,when that role is covered by the LCA? The original req. was for 120 MMRCAs of which we are getting just 36 Rafales for the price of 120! At even $60M a pop we could've got 120 MIG-35s when it's cost price for Egypt is between $40-50M. From some statements from IAF CAMs and ANd after the SE we will still few "200" med. combat aircraft!

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Deans » 09 Oct 2017 11:20

Having read this thread and allied ones, I am unclear why the following options is collectively not better than the assembly of 126 SE aircraft.

1. Faster time frame for Tejas induction incl. if necessary getting Tata/Adani to assemble them. My sense is it would take as much time
and cost less than the time frame for the SE project, while getting around the transfer of tech problem and reducing complexity in our
maintenance from multiple aircraft types (which is a problem I believe has been underplayed by the IAF and on this thread).

2. Induct another 36 Rafales. 2 squadrons is neither here nor there. 4 squadrons makes more sense in developing an operating eco system for
the aircraft.

3. See if we can buy the 12 SU-30's, at cost, intended for Venezeula, which it is most likely unable to pay for. Similarly, a squadron of Mirage 2000's from Greece which is also broke and probably looking for a buyer. We can probably get these `saste mein' to plug immediate shortfalls in
squadron strength. It will also send a signal to vendors that we are not desperate enough to pay $ 15 bln and have more diverse sources of
supply than they assume.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Philip » 09 Oct 2017 11:37

Good point about Adani /Reliance/Tatas whoever and another LCA line.My only concern about the Rafale is it's hideous cost.A second batch at even a low estimate of $100-150M from $200M is exorbitant when the goal is to increase numbers and sqds.Even the M2K upgrades cost $50M each! More than the cost of a brand new MIG-35 ($40M) with all the bells and whistles like new TVC engines,AESA radar,etc. LCAs would cost around 75% of a new MIG-35 even cheaper not to mention time saved,sev. years for both types.

More MKIs or single seat 35s another option if a two-pilot bird adds to overall manpower cost,etc.The IAF have to be prudent and cost-conscious when the economy requires a major financial boost.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby ashthor » 09 Oct 2017 12:20

They should come up with a clause for every fighter inducted export 3.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby JayS » 09 Oct 2017 15:40

Deans wrote:Having read this thread and allied ones, I am unclear why the following options is collectively not better than the assembly of 126 SE aircraft.

1. Faster time frame for Tejas induction incl. if necessary getting Tata/Adani to assemble them. My sense is it would take as much time
and cost less than the time frame for the SE project, while getting around the transfer of tech problem and reducing complexity in our
maintenance from multiple aircraft types (which is a problem I believe has been underplayed by the IAF and on this thread).


It seems GOI did try this option way back in 2015. There was an offer for manufacturing 200+ LCA MK2 with $12B order. I remember there was a high-level meeting with all "leading" industrialists. I do not know the details of the offer or why it was given silent burial.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Kartik » 09 Oct 2017 23:00

Philip wrote:Good point.Why the insistence on only an SE fighter,when that role is covered by the LCA? The original req. was for 120 MMRCAs of which we are getting just 36 Rafales for the price of 120! At even $60M a pop we could've got 120 MIG-35s when it's cost price for Egypt is between $40-50M. From some statements from IAF CAMs and ANd after the SE we will still few "200" med. combat aircraft!


MiG-35? You mean, in your own words, "old hag in a new dress with lots and lots of makeup"?

40 years since the maiden flight of the MiG-29 fighter jet


The first flight of the Mikoyan MiG-29 fighter jet took place on 6 October 1977.


The MiG-29 light fighter developed in the early 80-s has opened a new epoch in development of light fighters. It has become the first aircraft in the world of this class combining the unsurpassed efficiency in agile air fights and attack of enemy with middle and short range missiles.
..

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Aditya_V » 09 Oct 2017 23:33

This SE fighter in preference to Tejas makes no sense. Just the usual import mafia and foreign vendors will.make a killing. A huge burden on the country's finances which we keep a 2nd rate airforce for the next 40 years. Anther HAL Marut and Arjun saga plus 15 billion import for naval fighters. If these decisions indeed go through it will be a strategic mistake

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Will » 10 Oct 2017 00:20

I think SAAB shot itself in the foot with the tie up with Adani. With the reported closeness to the ruling dispensation just opens up the govt to attack which I don't think will be risked.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Khalsa » 10 Oct 2017 01:54

Agree with Chinmay.
The Single Engined fighter does not make sense in light of Tejas + GE404 Combination.
I believe SE fighter is basically an excuse to pick up the know how for something we either can't do right now or do really poorly.

Something ain't right here.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Rakesh » 10 Oct 2017 06:07

Austin wrote:If the IAF keen to buy the Gripen then why not directly go for G2G deal and speed up the process. Why waste time in bidding etc when both types have competed and have been tested extensively in MMRCA race surely IAF would have data for both types.

Because Uncle Sam owns the engines on both aircraft. The IAF has to play this out (or at least give the appearance of it). Going for a G2G deal directly with Sweden will surely anger the Americans. Going for a G2G deal with the Americans and you will piss off the Swedes, but what are they going to do really? However if you have a competition and the F-Solah loses - and it certainly looks that way - there is nothing really the Americans can do overtly. What I want is for Gripen to win, so the US places export restrictions on all things American aboard the Gripen. Let the deal collapse. Not going to happen, but I wish it did.

But the IAF is not going to take the F-16. All this talk of squadron shortage appears to not bother the IAF in the least bit. Because if it is going to take a good 10 years for the first SE aircraft to arrive, then where is the squadron shortage? Prime Minister Modi - when he wins a second term - cannot force the F-Solah on to the IAF either. On what basis is he going to do so? He cannot argue the technical merits because he is not knowledeable on the subject. And as to the geopolitical aspect, the IAF does not care really because that is not the IAF's purview. This is not the 123 Nuclear Agreement, where the armed forces had no real role to play. Nobody knows air combat in India, better than the IAF.

The Prime Minister or the Govt cannot interfere in the technical trials of both planes. The IAF solely owns that aspect of the deal. Nobody in the Govt is going to watch how the technical trials are being conducted by the IAF. How are they even going to assess what the IAF did? The fact that Saab had this in the bag was evident when Group Captain Suneet Krishna (retd) - Tejas test pilot - was all praises for the Gripen. And he was speaking about the technical merits, not the geopolitical aspect. She is everything the Tejas Mk2 is supposed to be. I have yet to come across a single IAF pilot say the same about the F-Solah, Block 70.

It Was A Dream To Fly Gripen - by Group Captain Suneet Krishna (retd)
http://www.gripenblogs.com/Lists/Posts/ ... px?ID=1615

Listen and parse every word that he says in that video above. He is a test pilot and a very experienced one at that. He knows what he is talking about and owns his subject. Now imagine the Tejas Mk 2 in that role. IAF pilots who fly the Tejas Mk 1 right now more or less say the exact same thing. I say again, the Gripen E is everything the Tejas Mk2 is supposed to be. Air Chief Marshal Raha flew to Sweden and got a ride aboard a twin seater Gripen D as well. Believe me, the IAF loves the Gripen. She is one amazing plane, but not good for the Tejas program.

And the Americans are not helping themselves by outright refusing to transfer any technology and not be held liable for any Indian made planes. This is like shooting yourself in the foot, before the competition gets underway. At least do what Dassault did, first win the bloody competition and then make those claims be known. During negotiations Dassault basically said they cannot guarentee any HAL made Rafales and that shocked the government, but it was too late at that point. The MoD already flatly refused to negotiate with L2 (Eurofighter) as it was L1 onlee. Even the IAF said, there is no Plan B. Dassault had us by the balls, they squeezed and we squealed. They knew we had no other choice.

Will wrote:I think SAAB shot itself in the foot with the tie up with Adani. With the reported closeness to the ruling dispensation just opens up the govt to attack which I don't think will be risked.

The same reported closeness exists between Reliance and the Govt, but that did not stop Dassault Reliance Aerospace Limited (DRAL) to come about. The BJP is in a majority government now and will have a majority government in 2019 as well. What is the opposition going to do? Shout corruption? Do it, but they better have the evidence to back it up. The ghost of Bofors is well alive. Every i will be dotted and every t will be crossed in this deal. But the opposition cannot bring the government down, otherwise they will have to do a vote of no confidence in the Parliament and convince a good chunk of BJP MPs to do the same. How many BJP MPs are willing to go against the Prime Minister? All the Govt has to do it is admit the closeness, but state that the IAF ran the technical show and they chose the Gripen E over the F-16. Is it the Govt's fault that Saab chose Adani as its partner? Or is there evidence to prove that the Govt convinced Saab to pick Adani?

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Rakesh » 10 Oct 2017 06:29

Rakesh wrote:The IAF has to come around to seeing the value of continuing with the Tejas program. And that can *ONLY* happen as more aircraft are inducted into the IAF. I believe there will be a change of heart in the IAF in the next few years. Protracted delays in the SE program - as shown in the article above - is a good thing for the Tejas.

FWIW....

Why IAF must convince Centre to ensure import substitution with indigenisation programme
http://www.financialexpress.com/opinion ... me/888155/

Quality human resources have never been an issue for the Indian Air Force (IAF) ever since it started operating under the British, post-First World War Paris Peace Conference 1919-20. From ground engineering to logistics to maintenance to flying missions of all types, in all weather and from tarmacs—from the swampy jungles of Burma to the rugged, barren and hilly terrain of the North-West Frontier Province’s rudimentary air bases of Quetta, Drigh Road and Kohat—Indian fliers accomplished their mission with élan and ingenuity, proving their British rulers that, given a chance, they were second to none. In fact, the British could not have had emerged victorious in the Asian theatre without the steely resolve and sterling flying skills and qualities of the Empire’s pilots, navigators, gunners and ground handlers.

The foundation laid by the rigours of training and flying Spitfires seamlessly transformed the IAF into an institution of awe, inspiration and envy post-1947 operations—J&K in 1947-48; Indo-Pak War of 1965, 1971; and Kargil 1999. From the early-day Lysander and Tiger Moth to De Havilland Vampire, Ouragan, Mystere, Canberra, Hunter, Marut, Gnat, Ajeet, Sukhoi Su-7, MiG-21, 23, 25, 27, 29, Jaguar, Mirage 2000, Sukhoi Su-30MKI to now Dassault Rafale, it is a saga of glory that culminated with the celebration of completion of 85 years of the IAF on October 8, 2017.

With time, however, the operating environment of the IAF has changed, as things have become more challenging with the possible two-front air combat created by an aggressive Sino-Pak axis. What makes things more complex for the IAF is the traditional slow reaction of the government to address, among other things, the urgent hardware equipping and replenishment owing to its inability to develop steady and sustained indigenous air assets’ production. Virtual 100% imported foreign-origin fleet can neither give enduring confidence nor the ability to a force to face conflict of a long duration. The possibility of loss, attrition, delay and ‘sanction’, all become real-time ‘non-battlefield threat’ as seen in the past when foreign suppliers were pressured to either reduce or switch off the flowing supply tap in accordance with the big brother’s wishes—1965 War and post-1998 Pokhran nuclear test come to mind. Indigenisation, instead of import, has to be the foremost priority for the IAF—the sooner, the better.

This is because both China and Pakistan appear to have made considerable progress in air assets’ indigenisation vis-a-vis India. Instances galore can be cited. However, only a few would suffice to make a point. On January 11, 2017, came Jane’s Defence Weekly report “China’s twin-engine, fifth-generation, second FC-31 fighter prototype makes maiden flight.” Accordingly, the fighter made by the Shenyang Aircraft Corporation has “better stealth capabilities, improved electronic equipment, and a large payload capacity.” Interestingly, and not impressively, simultaneously came the Jane’s report that “India approves purchases worth over $1 billion.” For “materiel acquisitions worth `71.84 billion ($1.066 billion) and sanctioned the procurement of a Boeing C-17 Globemaster III transport aircraft for the Indian Air Force.” Not a very happy news for an Indian citizen surely. China indigenising. India importing? Both for national security!

Hardly a week passed and came three news items. One, “Russian Sukhoi Su-35 may be China’s last imported fighter.” Two, “China’s H-6K bomber shows new strike capabilities.” Three, “India seeks to make spare parts for licence-built Sukhoi Su-30MKI fighters.” Obviously, the contrast between China’s “last imported fighter” and “India seeks to make spare parts…” is too glaring to comment on. Nevertheless, purely to take a lesson for India’s future air force programme, it must be noted that “China had been trying to acquire the Sukhoi Su-35—along with its Saturn 117S jet engine—from Russia for several years.” Once acquired, Beijing’s reverse engineering (which resorts to unethical commerce) nevertheless makes it ‘indigenous’, thereby helping it to be self-sufficient in defence preparedness. Clearly, not-too-friendly a power may also, at times, help learn and improve economics and defence.

It must be admitted that the ‘Chinese weapons designs’ have been ‘boosted by US experience, tech start-up companies’ in Beijing itself. As reported in April 2017, “Chinese nationals who previously worked for the NASA and other US research institutions have returned to China and used their training and exposure to the latest US high-tech R&D. This experience is then being applied to the development of a new generation of future Chinese weaponry.” One has to concede here Beijing’s clever move to assign high priority to these non-resident Chinese (NRC) who now can “count on funding for their projects—consistent funding from year to year with no fears of looming budget cuts, as was the case back in the US.” “This combination of ‘job security’ plus their elevated status proved to be the powerful motivators” for the NRC, who now appear to be an engine of growth for Beijing’s weapons system indigenisation. The latest situation, however, emerged from/in the May 2017 information that the single-engine Sino-Pak “twin-seat Pakistan Aeronautical Complex/Chengdu Aircraft Industry Corporation JF-17B Thunder/FC-1B Xiaolong combat aircraft has made its maiden flight,” which emphasised on increased payload and combat radius.

It thus speaks volumes about the IAF’s professionalism to maintain its glorious record and try and upgrade its assets in a complicated and deteriorating security environment of the 21st century. Although the IAF is neither the final decision maker nor the industrial policy planner, yet it needs to advise the government of the supreme importance of using indigenous air operation assets for future eventualities and maintain combat readiness without any possibility of supply disruption from foreign vendors in times of crisis. Surely, the IAF has both expertise and experience to navigate the Indian establishment.

The short of the long 85-year story of the IAF is that India must devise ways, means and methods to implement import-substitute with indigenisation programme for aircraft on which it should be embossed ‘Made in India’. The need of the hour is quiet confidence and cool, cold, calculated planning; without chest-beating. All leading powers make their own aircraft—the US, Russia, China, France are shining examples. Although other European powers have ceased to make their own aircraft, yet the four-nation Eurofighter Typhoon is still the torch bearer thereof. Against this background, continuous dependence on imported air assets will not take India forward. It is time for the state to act. And act fast. At 85, it is the bounden duty of the IAF to take the initiative to navigate and make a strong indigenisation case to convince the government. Surely, the government will listen.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Rakesh » 10 Oct 2017 07:27

An entire article devoted to the future of the IAF and the author places the F-Solah / Gripen E under a sub-heading titled Single Engine fighters. But talks about boosting/supporting Tejas production and AMCA development. The longer the SE deal takes, the better it is for Tejas. Time is her best friend right now.

Five steps to a viable air force
http://ajaishukla.blogspot.ca/2017/10/f ... force.html

The IAF must extend life of Jaguars, push Tejas and AMCA, sign FGFA, acquire two more Rafale squadrons, and build up force multipliers.

First, the IAF must expedite the long-postponed proposal to upgrade at least four of its six Jaguar ground strike squadrons with more powerful engines, DARIN-3 navigation-attack avionics, airborne electronically scanned array (AESA) radar and capable air-to-air and air-to-ground weaponry. Along with three Mirage 2000 and three MiG-29 squadrons already being upgraded, this would keep 10 squadrons of capable (though not cutting-edge) fighters flying for another 15 years till 2032. The upgraded Jaguars could serve some years beyond that.

Second, the IAF must whole-heartedly support indigenous fighter development: specifically the Tejas Mark 1A, followed by the eponymous Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA) – a twin-engine, stealthy, fifth-generation fighter. The IAF has initiated the acquisition of 84 Tejas Mark 1A fighters (four squadrons). This will have four improvements over the initial Tejas – AESA radar for added combat capability; air-to-air refuelling to increase combat range; an externally-mounted “self-protection jammer” (SPJ) to blind enemy radars, and tidier internal systems to increase maintainability and reduce “turnaround time”, i.e. how quickly a refuelled and rearmed Tejas can leave on a fresh mission after returning from an earlier one. Improving the Tejas incrementally could give the 2032 fleet eight Tejas squadrons.

Simultaneously, the IAF must strongly support the indigenous AMCA. Having a fully-developed and flight-tested AMCA by 2032 is vital for replacing the upgraded MiG-29s and Mirage 2000s that begin retiring that year, followed by the Jaguar. Expediting the conclusion of a contract to build a single-engine fighter in India with foreign collaboration would benefit the AMCA by galvanising an indigenous aerospace eco-system. It would also add six (or more) squadrons to the IAF by 2032

Fourth, paradoxically, considering that buying the Rafale was a financial blunder, the IAF must now procure two more squadrons. The Rafale will be the IAF’s eighth fighter type when it joins (sixth if one discounts the MiG-21 and MiG-27 on their way out), and it makes little sense to create basing and maintenance infrastructure for just two Rafale squadrons.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby abhik » 10 Oct 2017 08:36

^^^ So the five steps for a viable air force is...
1. Buy
2. Buy
3. Buy
4. Buy
5. Buy
... every good or bad idea that the politico-general-babu came up with.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby srai » 10 Oct 2017 08:40

^^^

Budget consideration is the key:
...
The answer, obviously, is for the IAF to spend more judiciously. Its misguided quest to own all flying machines, including attack helicopters that fight the land battle and should rightly belong to the army, has resulted in the IAF spending some $2 billion on 22 Apache attack helicopters – money that could have gone out of the army’s coffers. The IAF must also balance between, on the one hand, buying pricey, cutting-edge fighters like the Rafale that it can afford only in small numbers; and, on the other hand, acquiring inexpensive workhorses that provide the numbers needed to cover India’s vast airspace. While fighter pilots must not be sent into combat in inferior aircraft, an obsessive quest for outright combat superiority will leave an air force short of numbers. A telling example is the IAF’s Rafale purchase, where exorbitant cost (Rs 686 crore per aircraft, Rs 58,000 crore for the deal with add-ons) has left the IAF with just 36 fighters instead of the 126 that were tendered. Everyone disregarded Stalin’s dictum: “Quantity has a quality of its own.”
...


LCA Mk1/A at $26-$32 million a piece (fly-away cost) is the "inexpensive workhorses" that the IAF needs for acquiring quantities. At those prices, 12 squadrons of LCA could be acquired for around $7 billion (plus infrastructure and support costs).

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Philip » 10 Oct 2017 12:08

The chief tout advising India to buy both F-16s and F-18s ,Ashley Tell-us,writing in the F mag sneers at the LCA saying it is vastly inferior to the F-16 p*mping his aged hag with an overdose of makeup as the next best thing!
He by implication wants the untimely death of the LCA lock,stock and barrel.Similarly,the F-18 is touted as the best medicine for the Navy, hope of a JSF perhaps in the future,E-2Cs which will operate from land (!)and as he emphasises ease of networking with the USN.By this strategy India will become nothing more than a US lackey,where effective control of our assets is under US command,while we pay the huge bill for the same!
Does Mr.Modi intend taking us down the garden path in a mil. marriage with the US or are there vested commercial predators at play here?

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Vivek K » 10 Oct 2017 23:50

Consider the following wasteful acquisitions
a) Rust Bucket Gorky - $2B over with the control island in the path of landing and taking off of aircraft. Available option - hang on to Viraat a little longer and build 2 Vikrants on war footing. Would love to know the farthest deployment of the Gorky and the longest period away at sea.
b) IA - 6 Apaches when they could perhaps have bought 3-5 times the number of LCHs.
c) T-90s whose price was disguised to hide the cost of all items needed and make it appear cheaper than the Arjun. And till date, the roosis have not transferred tech for the barrel. IA should cap the T-90s at current levels and induct Arjuns in large nos. Any good techs in the T-90 should be absorbed in the Arjuns (pay roosis).
d) KA -226
e) Mig -29K looked great on paper but turned out to be just that - a paper tiger.
f) Mirage 2000 upgrade without including an engine upgrade for $2 billion.
f) And what will go down in history as the largest waste - 36 Rafales. This will perhaps be overshadowed by another order of 36 Rafales. History of the Marut where it was ignored to purchase the underpowered Jaguar - which we are now (37 years later) trying to rectify with a more powerful engine. The chance to be independent only comes with ability to have your own MIC. But that is lost in corrupt India.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Philip » 11 Oct 2017 09:30

V I agree with many of your points but here some clarifications on a few items.

Gorky sailed all the way from the Arctic to India.It has been in service for sev.years now,exercised with sev. navies too including the USN.No grouse from the IN about her barring 29K glitches.When she was acquired nothing else was available and the Varyag was in bad condition and too large for any Indian port.I was a great fan too of the Viraat,but we hadn't enough Sea Harriers available,missed the boat when all 70+ Harriers were early retd. by the RN ,snapped up entirely with all spares,engines,etc. by the USMC. Even nowthe JSF F-35B is still to complete it's dev. phase with a v.small no. Of LSP aircraft delivered.There was no other STOVL bird available.SAAB made a proposal for Sea Gripens for the Viraat but the bird doesn't exist as yet.

The IA has asked for 400+ extra T- 90s.If there is something wrong with the tank is the IA top brass of the last decade by implication corrupt,morons or cretins?

Back to SE.The MIG-29/K is 15+yrs younger than the F-16/F-18s.In fact it was specifically developed to counter the F-16.The 35 is far superior in dogfighting with it's TVC engines than its competitors also with an AESA radar etc. for just $40+M,1/3 to 1/4 the cost of a single Rafale.

BAe cutting jobs by 2000.Huge outcry about the Brit. govt. handing out def. contracts to the US instead,Boeing in particular.Typhoon orders less than even Rafale.Are we going to follow Britain's example and in reality ditch the LCA after a small batch or two,quietly ordering more SEs?

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Eric Leiderman » 11 Oct 2017 10:06

Mr Shookla only talks of the LCA Mk1A not the MK2 that is what the IAF requires in nos 200+ Hopefully they can get the 2 flying soon.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Philip » 11 Oct 2017 17:44

Buying 4 sqds. of Rafales would beggar the budget beyond that IAF's share! Ultimately,it is cost,cost,cost.Even the former CNO of the USN,Adm. Greenert famously said that "you do not need a sports car when a bomb truck will do" The IAF's obsession with only top-of-the-line fighters in its inventory is an impossibility and the sooner it is told the better.

There are two major issues here.Increasing Indian indigenous fighter numbers with a lesser dependence upon firang fighters and the balanced acquisition of both numbers and quality of affordable aircraft to maintain our air superiority over both China and Pak,combined. For this,only large numbers of LCAs and extras of affordable foreign fighters,plus upgrades,already in service will bring costs down.This refers to the MIG-29/35s,Jags and MKIs.M2Ks are prohibitively expensive even for upgrades costing $50M per aircraft when a new MIG-35 is only $40+M!

The second point,to maintain qualitaive superiority necessitates the acquisition asap of a 5th-gen fighter.Here,in whatever shape or form,the FGFA deal must be sealed. Its terms must include sharing of whatever tech we require which must be available for the AMCA. In fact developing an LCA-S could be part of the deal. Since there is a capability factor reg. the current LCA MKs.,low production rates and the need for more numbers,the SE req. emerged,but increasingly looking like an off-course deal with the US to buy its aging beauties.If we are forced to buy another SE fighter despite all other options pursued to meet the Sino-Pak JV,instead of buying more Rafales,buying twice as many Gripens for the same cost would make more sense, as they would be cheaper.Moreover the planned upgrades of 200+ MKIs into "Super-Sukhois" would give us afar more capable aircraft than the Rafale,capable of carrying 3 BMos ASMs,LR AAMs,AESA radars,etc..etc.,obviating the need for more Rafales which would still cost twice that of an SS. With 5th-gen FGFAs also in the pipeline,who needs a 4++ Rafale costing the equiv. of a Bentley?

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Viv S » 11 Oct 2017 21:32

Philip wrote:"you do not need a sports car when a bomb truck will do" The IAF's obsession with only top-of-the-line fighters in its inventory is an impossibility and the sooner it is told the better.

Philip wrote:to maintain qualitaive superiority necessitates the acquisition asap of a 5th-gen fighter.Here,in whatever shape or form,the FGFA deal must be sealed.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Philip » 12 Oct 2017 15:56

There is no contradiction in this.A Rafale costs us $200+M ,a second batch might cost $150M for a 4++ gen fighter. The FGFA has been pegged at $100+M only. Would you prefer a 4++ fighter that is in its middle age to a far more capable 5th-gen fighter just entering service which is also at least 1/3rd cheaper?

We need a 5th-gen fighter to counter China's stealth fighters entering LSP.These aircraft will initially be required for two sqds.Upgraded MKIs to SS std. will provide the extra heavy numbers.It is in the med. and light category where numbers have fallen and will fall further once the MIG -21/27s in their hundreds are phased out.

However,there are enough med. sized aircraft,far cheaper options than the rafale to delal with the med. multi-role/strike req. MIG-29Ugs at $30-35M ,MIG-35s at $40M+ or even F-18s at around $70M are far more cost-effective.This is the "Bomb truck" requirement/quote and reference to Adm.Greenert. 4 sqds. of Rafales at a cost of around $12B for just 72-80 aircraft does not also solve the problem of number of sqds. required.
$12B can get the IAF atan average of light and other med. options at least 200 aircraft.A min of 10 fully equipped sqds.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby brar_w » 12 Oct 2017 18:00

There is no contradiction in this.A Rafale costs us $200+M ,a second batch might cost $150M for a 4++ gen fighter. The FGFA has been pegged at $100+M only.


Those costs aren't confirmed. We don't know what the recurring costs are for fly-away Rafale or FGFA in Indian configuration or what the final bill be to develop the FGFA. The first FGFA isn't even in prototype stage yet, while the T-50 is and is yet to enter serial production..

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Austin » 12 Oct 2017 18:08

Price will varry depending what is part of the Deal , Rafale is costly not because the unit cost is higher but IAF asked for 75 % guranteed uptimes for 5 years which means they had to account for spares,mro ,logistic etc for the five years and paid upfront to make sure it does not fall below that figure. A plain vanila Rafale wont cost more than $80 million

To add there is 50% offset as part of rafale deal if not for that rafale would cost $5 billion

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby brar_w » 12 Oct 2017 18:20

I wouldn't put it like that. Both components are fairly expensive on account of a fairly small production batch overall for the program that has limited its annual build rates. Even if you take everything out of the deal, the Rafale will likely still cost upwards of a $100 Million easily for an export customer once you incorporate user specific changes and configurations. When you add support costs you get an even higher cost but that is just paying upfront for what you would have had to pay anyways.

A plain vanila Rafale wont cost more than $80 million


I don't know of a single customer that has paid that cost for an export configuration of the Rafale. I don't know what a vanilla rafale looks like and what you take out of it to make it so. But if by plain-vanilla you mean fly-away, then there were reports that the MOD paid in the vicinity of $100 Million range fly-away before other costs were added. Of those other costs the non-support costs attributed to India-specific changes would need to be added to the unit cost to get a true fly-away cost for the said configuration.

Of course support and weapon costs will be high given systems and the fact that it is a small enterprise, for both the IAF and overall for Dassault. The 5-year PBL'esque agreement shouldn't be very costly given that the numbers are small.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Pratyush » 12 Oct 2017 18:36

Austin wrote:
Snip.....

To add there is 50% offset as part of rafale deal if not for that rafale would cost $5 billion



My understanding of offset is that some part of the contract price has to to be spent in the buying country. There is no reason why such a clause will increase price. If anything it should make it cheaper in real terms as the amount comes back to the buyer.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby brar_w » 12 Oct 2017 18:41

Offsets do increase price of the deal since the supplier has to contract out work outside of its established supply chain for various commercial and defense related programs that it identifies as part of its offset obligations. This may be easier for a very large manufacturers with a diverse business such as Airbus or Boeing, but it may be harder for smaller firms to accommodate it without costly adjustments. Hence large offset demands are a barrier for some of the small firms that often need to partner up with larger OEMs to stay competitive in the international market since their product portfolio is small and supply chains not as large and diverse.

If you have to move tens to hundreds of millions of dollars of work from one supplier, and get another up to speed there is cost involved in that and it gets transferred. Of course the cost increase is not the size of the offset but there is an increase in overall cost if there are regulations placed on the supplier that it has to meet as part of its obligation.

Much like any regulation placed on an OEM, they all contribute to its overall cost structure and are ultimately transferred to the customer.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Pratyush » 12 Oct 2017 19:04

If the increase to the tune of 50% due to offsets then I like the deal even less.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby brar_w » 12 Oct 2017 19:21

No it does not increase to the same tune but there is cost escalation since you are adding additional obligations that the supplier has to fulfill. For the customer the benefits are work for local A&D sector and this usually means a healthier sector from a job's perspective and greater work share in foreign projects.

When your product portfolio is small, and your product is not being produced in large quantities then the effects of an offset obligation are more. That is why OEMs under such circumstances often partner up with other OEMs and approach this as a package.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Viv S » 12 Oct 2017 19:23

Philip wrote:There is no contradiction in this.A Rafale costs us $200+M ,a second batch might cost $150M for a 4++ gen fighter. The FGFA has been pegged at $100+M only.Would you prefer a 4++ fighter that is in its middle age to a far more capable 5th-gen fighter just entering service which is also at least 1/3rd cheaper?

I would prefer that you attempt to understand the difference between flyaway & acquisition costs. Unless you think the "FGFA" can be acquired for a unit price of $100M, in which case I would prefer you take the rose-tinted glasses off.

We need a 5th-gen fighter to counter China's stealth fighters entering LSP.These aircraft will initially be required for two sqds.Upgraded MKIs to SS std. will provide the extra heavy numbers.It is in the med. and light category where numbers have fallen and will fall further once the MIG -21/27s in their hundreds are phased out.

The PAK FA is still in the prototype stage. If all goes well the RuAF may receive 12-odd LSP aircraft by 2020. The FGFA is at least 5 years away, further still in terms of being a mature weapon system.

Pucker up though, there is a 5th gen fighter on the market, and its stealthier to boot, with better ESM & EO systems. More importantly, it has clocked 125,000 flight hours so far (150K by end of the year) and will be available having sorted out the serviceability & reliability headaches that the Russians will spend the next 5-10 years resolving.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Austin » 12 Oct 2017 20:16

Pratyush wrote:
Austin wrote:
Snip.....

To add there is 50% offset as part of rafale deal if not for that rafale would cost $5 billion



My understanding of offset is that some part of the contract price has to to be spent in the buying country. There is no reason why such a clause will increase price. If anything it should make it cheaper in real terms as the amount comes back to the buyer.


Well the clause is Dassault will invest 50 % of the cost of the offset in the country ...had they not gone for offset they would have got Rafale at cheaper cost , DPP specifies mandatory 40 % offset.

I think they would use the ofset for Kaveri program but not limited to it

Also understand Rafale is special aircraft for India with additional specification from MOD and these are for Strategic Purpose.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Philip » 12 Oct 2017 21:23

No one is asking for the FGFA tomorrow but within 2-3 years time for a first batch of T-50 std. aircraft.Subsequent deliveries would incrementally be IAF specific just as was done when SU-30s were first acquired,40 aircraft of Sov./RU std. delivered.MKIs came later.Have said this before.If such a strategy is adopted 5yrs hence one could see the first definitive FGFA flying and local production beginning given that the deal is sealed not later than mid 2018.The cost of a T-50 is currently estimated as approx. $100M .Even if the FGFA costs another 15-20% more,it will still be cheaper than a Rafale or not more than it if Rafale orders increase globally bringing costs down.Therefore buying more Rafale makes little sense at these huge costs.

Upgraded MKIs to SS std. with new AESA radar, new engines,BMos missiles,LR AAMs,etc. would not cost more than $20M or so given that the cost of MIG-29 upgrades were just under $10M each compared with $50M for a single M2K! There is no Q that French mil eqpt. is the costliest of all.Even former DM ,MP said that extra MKIs were an option instead of Rafales.

Look at Scorpene costs,Airbus tanker costs,etc.Either the French can't build economically when compared with competitors or there is much "padding" for miscellaneous expenses.Case in point Paki Agosta Sub scandal.

When the bulk of the PAF is going to be JF-17 variants and F-16s, either LCA ramped up prod. and faster improved variants and/or Gripens ,in case the LCA hits a log jam in dev., are the best options for the IAF's 'SE search.

The French have huge opportunities for offsets since there is such a wide range of French milware in the armed force's inventory.Helo engines,missiles of diff. types, aircraft components,etc. A JV for engine dev. plus perfecting Kaveri etc., are just some options.Establishing a supply chain to support Fr. weaponry would ensure business for decades.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Philip » 12 Oct 2017 21:38

PS:Offsets will apply to all OEMs,how come other similar products are still more competitive than French weaponry?

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Viv S » 12 Oct 2017 22:30

Philip wrote:No one is asking for the FGFA tomorrow but within 2-3 years time for a first batch of T-50 std. aircraft.Subsequent deliveries would incrementally be IAF specific just as was done when SU-30s were first acquired,40 aircraft of Sov./RU std. delivered.MKIs came later. Have said this before.If such a strategy is adopted 5yrs hence one could see the first definitive FGFA flying and local production beginning given that the deal is sealed not later than mid 2018.

15 years after the first Su-30MK was delivered, we were struggling to push its serviceability rate over 60%. At least in the Su-30's case, it was based upon the widely serving Su-27.

The PAK FA being a (near) clean-sheet design - is still far far from being a mature war-fighting platform - and I, for one, am not enthusiastic about the prospect of India reimbursing the Russian R&D expenditure (to the tune of $3 bn+), on one hand, while still being forced to do the donkey-work of taking it to maturity, on the other.

If as you say - "to maintain qualitaive superiority necessitates the acquisition asap of a 5th-gen fighter", then its far safer for the IAF to be the 12th customer for the F-35A (while dumping the F-16/Gripen) than the first one for the PAK FA. The latter can be pursued as an FGFA at a later date when the re-engining is done and the Russians have run it through a period of sustained operational testing.

The cost of a T-50 is currently estimated as approx. $100M .Even if the FGFA costs another 15-20% more,it will still be cheaper than a Rafale or not more than it if Rafale orders increase globally bringing costs down.Therefore buying more Rafale makes little sense at these huge costs.

That is, in all likelihood, the flyway cost forecast for the PAK FA (or possibly the weapon systems cost). The same for the Rafale would also be in the $100 mil range. The F-35A is also in the $90-100 mil range.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Kartik » 13 Oct 2017 04:20

Interesting article- gives the production details and timelines for Brazil's Gripen E and F. And it presents an interesting picture of the challenges facing the Saab proposal and the LM proposal.

For Saab, it is advantageous for the IAF to take more time on its RFI, RFP and all the other steps before final selection and contract signature. The more time this process takes, the more time for Saab to complete development and certification for the Gripen E/F. And that much more time to complete work on the Swedish and Brazilian orders before taking up all the work that would come with the Single Engine Fighter contest win.

For Saab, it always made most sense to see deliveries for the IAF starting around 2024. That way, they'd not need to delay deliveries to the Swedish AF, which start in 2019 and continues on till 2024, to accomodate single seaters for the IAF. Post 2024, the Indian order would have given plenty of work going on through almost 2028-2030, till when Saab's Swedish line and Embraer's Brazilian line would supply parts for the CKD and SKD kits that the Indian line would assemble. Post 2029-30, we could expect almost fully Indian built Gripens to roll off the lines.

For LM, the reverse is true. LM's haste in trying to seal this deal as early as possible was palpable- at least till the Bahrain order came through. They were very quickly running out of production work that would allow them to keep the F-16 line going profitably. The new Bahraini F-16 order will give them another year and a half or 2 years worth of work and some breathing space before a decision is taken by the GoI. But they'll still want a decision taken as early as possible. Expect more pressure from them for an early decision.

As the article states, the FAB's twin seat Gripen F won't see certification flight testing till October 2021. Which implies that certification won't be completed till October 2022 at least and could last even longer, perhaps well into 2023. If the Gripen is chosen, and the deal does get signed in the next 2 years, expect the IAF to get single seaters starting 2023 from the Swedish line and then twin seaters after 2024, from the Brazilian line.

Since Sweden isn't ordering any Gripen F twin seaters and Brazil is the only customer for it and is getting a lot of the design and development workshare on the Gripen F, there is no chance of the IAF getting any early direct deliveries of IAF customized Gripen F anytime before 2024 at the earliest.

As for Indian assembled Gripen, I'd expect the first ones to roll out 2 years after first direct delivered Gripens. Albeit with SKD kits only and minimal part production in India. This is all thanks to the spadework that goes into the Indian SME building a local assembly line; seems extremely unlikely that an Indian assembly line will even be able to produce, through ToT, Gripen E or F before 2025. Remember, Embraer is building these jets in Brazil, and they know how to build much larger and more complicated civilian jets. Still, Brazilian engineers have been receiving on-the-job training and will continue to do so till production ends in Brazil in 2024. And production doesn't start from Brazilian lines till 2020 and the first Gripen from Brazilian lines doesn't get delivered till August 2022. One can't expect the Adanis to better that.

Expecting Adani to be able to match Embraer's skill and experience, having done zilch work in building any aerospace component, is laughable. No trained manpower, no facilities, no experience. When will they be able to hire all the people and get them trained? How long is that process going to take? Assuming they learn on the job as well, they'll still take at least a couple of years before being able to return and put that learning to practice on the Indian assembly line. The only other alternative is to poach heavily from HAL by offering much higher pay.

Saab has really made a bad bet here IMO, betting on the Adani's supposed closeness to the Modi govt. to tilt the deal their way and to be able to secure all the necessary clearances once they do win the Single Engine Fighter contest.

And by 2024, almost all if not all 83 Tejas Mk1A's should have been produced and delivered. It would be criminal to let that line go idle without additional Mk1A or Mk2 orders and wait on this imported Single Engine Fighter to do the job.

Brazil reveals Gripen production schedule and Embraer's manufacturing role
The Brazilian Air Force (FAB) has revealed production details for the 36 Saab Gripen E/F (F-39) combat aircraft it ordered for around USD5.4 billion in 2014, and told Jane’s on 5 October that deliveries will run from 2019 to 2024.

Brazil’s Gripens will begin a certification process in January 2019, and single-seat and twin-seat flight test instrumentation aircraft will perform first flights in July 2019 and October 2021, respectively.

Saab will fully manufacture 13 aircraft, and the remainder will have Brazilian participation.

An initial 11 serial-production single-seat Gripen E aircraft are to be delivered between October and November 2021, and the remaining eight single-seat aircraft will be initially built by Saab with on-the-job training for Brazilians and final assembly done in Brazil. More than 350 Brazilians will receive training in Sweden through 2024, a Saab spokesperson told Jane’s .


Embraer Defense and Security will play a major role in the programme and fully produce eight single-seat Gripen E and seven Gripen F twin-seat aircraft starting in June 2020, with the first Embraer-built E-model to be delivered in August 2022 and first F-model in September 2023.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby Philip » 13 Oct 2017 11:20

Why the GOI/MOD have never-at least one has not seen any report in the media about it,considered extra LCA lines in the pvt. sector with full GOI support,since HAL's prod. is limited,beats me. Fundamentally,the LCA is a desi design,albeit with a large % of firang components including the most important one the engine.Therefore there would be no lengthy negotiations,etc. in a JV between HAL and a pvt. entity.HAL would hand-hold them in the initial phase until they were capable on their own. HAL would still benefit from this.The JV could be structured just like the BMos JV,or somewhat similar.It would give HAL the opportunity to expand production ith a partner chipping in with finance,etc. with full GOI support.

Either HAL was being mean and niggardly,not wanting to share the "cake",and have subsequently lost out with the subsequent SE demand and that deal going to a pvt. player. To start with the pvt. players could've made a substantial % of the aircraft with final assembly at HAL,then graduating onto full manufacture. This would also have ensured the supply chain to support the aircraft,HAL often being accused by the IAF of not being able to provide timely supplies of spares,etc.,affecting aircraft availability in the field.Another option would've been setting up another line at Sulur,near Coimbatore,where the LCA's first sqd. will be based.Sulur is a BRD base of the IAF which could've been upgraded into a full-fledged manufacturing unit.It's not too far off from BLR also. L&T also have a large plant there (Coimbatore) manufacturing a variety of items.Cbe. is well-known for its auto-component industry and has a large no of cos. with highly skilled manpower. There are sev. which for years have been DRDO suppliers incl. L&T.Worthwhile having a defence cluster in the region just like Pune. Having a second unit with the IAF would thus keep the project "in-house" if pvt. players were to be kept out as a matter of policy. Sometime ago the IAF anted to build the BT at a BRD base,but HAL I think sabotaged the idea.

In the end however,getting the LCA rolling off prod, lines asap at least 16-24/yr. from HAL and any other entity should be the goal.If the push is given right now,by 2020 we would've seen excellent results while the SE req. /decision would still be hanging in the balance MOD speed!

PS:One must compare the attitude of HAL being the sole DPSU manufacturing aircraft and helos with that of naval and CG requirements. Sev. yards manufacture the entire range of naval surface combatants from carriers (CSL) to corvettes (GRSL) .Apart from carriers,MDL make everything else including subs.Yet pvt. entities like L&T and Pip. have been given contracts and have performed well.L&T recently delivered FDN-2 for the A&N islands.Pip has been making NOPVs,albeit with some problems of delivery,L&T supplied hulls for the N-subs,etc.A large no. of pvt. cos. are also supplying vital components like engines (Kirloskar),gears,etc.,etc.It's why the navy is in far better shape than the IAF reg. indigenisation, esp. indigenous designs. Almost every naval asset has been designed in-house.Compare that with the IAF,just the Tejas and now HAL's BT! The IJT has been a flop show,and only of late has the helo division done better with the LCH,LUH and MH unveiled. The ALH was dependent design wise heavily upon MBB in the initial stages. The IA is also making an effort with arty,AVs,etc. being farmed out to pvt. industry.It is a great shame in that we did not follow the example of other nations.We could've had at leats 3-4 aircraft/helo manufacturing cos. in India givne the huge orders required both for civil and mil uses.

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Re: 'Make in India' Single engined fighter

Postby JayS » 13 Oct 2017 12:29

Philip wrote:Either HAL was being mean and niggardly,not wanting to share the "cake",and have subsequently lost out with the subsequent SE demand and that deal going to a pvt. player.


Or perhaps the private companies didn't take the offer for whatever reason..?? GOI did offer manufacturing of 200+ LCA MK2 to Private companies with $12B investment from GOI in 2014-15. Unless you know something concrete from some chaiwalla (since nothing came out in public) on why it never took off blaming only GOI or HAL is at best your prejudiced opinion and blind faith in private companies like Ambanis or Adanis who you perhaps think are ready with everything to grab, only waiting for such opportunity to be offered. While I have not seen one statement from any of those, who are so much more willing to tie up with foreign OEMs for screwdrivergiri, showing interest in LCA at all. None of them even tried to take up Tier-1 supply work which was on offer for LCA.


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