fanne wrote:I do not want to be the one to whine first in this very new and auspicious thread, all power to MWF. We have truly made a copy of Mirage 2000 (-9 avionics wise, which is just now entering service). But the MWF is almost performance wise very same like Mirage 2000 (a 40 year old design, ours is little more modern than that), it is a multi-role fighter just like Mirage2000, a very good bomb truck and a very decent range, but suffers from the same shortcoming that Mirage 2000 has, slightly underpowered and not a great A-A fighter (it can not convincingly win against Mig 29, maybe LCAmk1a, f-16, j-10 etc.). Can we not bake in the space (for bigger engine and airflow required for it) so that at a later date it can be up engine? (It is going to serve for another 30-40 years with IAF?)
Here are some key take-aways from the combat that was seen recently between the IAF and PAF:
- Electronic warfare capabilities must be top notch. All IAF fighters need a very capable EW suite that includes MAWS, RWR and SPJ.
- A Towed Radar decoy is no longer going to be a luxury. It will become a necessity and I would expect the IAF to look hard into available options if an indigenous option is not available soon.
- Heavy electronic jamming is a must for a strike package going into enemy territory. A suitable capability needs to be developed so that the IAF can suppress enemy radars, both in the air (AWACS) and on the ground. IAF and DRDO must closely examine the possibility of using the Su-30MKI platform and developing an indigenous Growler equivalent.
- Longer range missiles are needed. The lack of R-77 use in the melee is worrying for me. Multiple AMRAAM shots from the PAF side but no reported BVRAAM shots from the IAF side. Why? If the R-77 needs to be phased out fast, then so be it. Rush the Astra into full scale production.
- More missile rounds required for the Tejas. We saw 24 PAF fighters in multiple packages trying to overwhelm or decoy our CAP or intercepting fighters. In the event of a couple of CAP fighters being the only defence in the air, they must have adequate number of missiles to take on at least 4 enemy fighters. A twin-rack pylon is a must for the Tejas Mk1 and Mk1A to increase its max BVRAAM loadout to 4 plus 2 CCMs.
- The excess emphasis on dog-fighting maneuverability needs be tempered. While maneuvering matters, it is not the be-all and end-all. the MiG-21 Bison's max G-load is 7Gs. yet it managed to shoot down a 9G rated F-16. Top notch cockpit avionics including HMDS, EW suite and a great radar and weapons matter more.
- R-73E works, so its not as urgent a situation to replace it with ASRAAM, but the IAF needs its Mirage-2000Is quickly. Pushing Matra Magic-II equipped Mirage-2000Hs across is dangerous to say the least.
And so the Tejas Mk2 MWF goals IMO would be:
- Have a great AESA radar that has a range of at least 160-180 km for a 5 sqm RCS target and a sub meter SAR resolution so SAR imagery can be quite detailed and allow for more precise targeting
- IRST that can help to positively ID it at a range of 50-60 km+
- EW suite with a fail-safe RWR and MAWS and internal SPJ and a towed radar decoy as mandatory equipment. if need be, import these but don't send fighters into battle without them
- An extremely pilot friendly cockpit and MFD or Smart Display layouts that minimise pilot workload and enable the pilot to stay focused on the mission.
- Multiple sensors inputs to be fused to present a single battlefield picture to the pilot. Towards that, I loved the LCA SPORT Large Screen Display pages that were showing up SAM bubbles in elevation.
- It should feature a next generation Datalink. The ODL (Op Data Link) should be developed into a fleet wide DL with enough bandwidth and speed to enable sharing ground target coordinates, aerial target radar tracks, large images, enemy emitter locations, etc. The Su-30MKI with its WSO would be an invalueable asset there, with 2 or 3 of them acting as a command post in the air.