Rafale RB of Indian Air Force : News and Discussions

Bon Plan

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Hydra

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If I have an interesting answer I will let you know.
Whats your prediction, any chance for positive response
Done deal in Jakarta ?
I don't know if we should believe this translation but it seems that the decision to buy Rafale by Indonesia is confirmed by the Indonesian Defense Minister and will be signed during the visit of Parly tomorrow.

Menteri Prabowo Akhirnya Pilih Beli Jet Tempur Rafale, Tapi Jumlahnya Dikurangi
So finally Rafale becoming an immense successful defense project in a competitive market unlike what EF Typhoon is doing. The later one failed to scure a meaningful market outside Europe.
 
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A Person

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The later one failed to scure a meaningful market outside Europe.
The Typhoon has a good presence in the Arab countries. Saudi Arabia (72), Oman (12), Koweit (28), Qatar (24), for a total of 136. But it has indeed failed to be a serious prospect outside of that region.

The Typhoon suffer from several problems that make it an unattractive prospect. It was designed as an air-to-air interceptor to complement the air-to-ground Tornado, instead of a proper multirole fighter from the start, following the doctrine of the Cold War that was obsolete by the time the aircraft was ready. One of the partner nations is Germany, which loves to block export -- there was a repeat order of 48 further aircraft for Saudi Arabia that was vetoed by Berlin. Two of the partner nations, Italy and the UK, have jumped ship to the F-35; and now that the F-35 is in a semi-usable state, one shouldn't expect any further investment from these two nations into the Typhoon.
 
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Hydra

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The Typhoon has a good presence in the Arab countries. Saudi Arabia (72), Oman (12), Koweit (28), Qatar (24), for a total of 136. But it has indeed failed to be a serious prospect outside of that region.

The Typhoon suffer from several problems that make it an unattractive prospect. It was designed as an air-to-air interceptor to complement the air-to-ground Tornado, instead of a proper multirole fighter from the start, following the doctrine of the Cold War that was obsolete by the time the aircraft was ready. One of the partner nations is Germany, which loves to block export -- there was a repeat order of 48 further aircraft for Saudi Arabia that was vetoed by Berlin. Two of the partner nations, Italy and the UK, have jumped ship to the F-35; and now that the F-35 is in a semi-usable state, one shouldn't expect any further investment from these two nations into the Typhoon.
We miraculously escaped by choosing Rafale instead of EF, or else we could have end up with a mediocre air to surface platform.
 

Hydra

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It was not miraculous, it was the IAF's choice all along, but they had to fight the babus to maintain their choice.
No, they cannot fight and win against the system. Our system is L1. If EF turned to L1 bidder in original mmrca we would have started negotiations with EF consortium, not with Dassault.
 

Picdelamirand-oil

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No, they cannot fight and win against the system. Our system is L1. If EF turned to L1 bidder in original mmrca we would have started negotiations with EF consortium, not with Dassault.
Look at the Swiss: they wanted the F-35, it had to be L1, they put it L1 even though in LCC it is twice as expensive as the Rafale. They just have to believe what L.M. says, whereas the FMS contract does not guarantee anything about the price and on the contrary it says that the buyer has to accept all the price increases that the US government accepts.
 

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Herciv

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swing-role-configuration.jpg
 

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Amarante

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@Herciv, let me deepl it

Rafale: The operational dimension for Greece and Cyprus in numbers

(Yannis Nikitas, defencereview.gr, sept22 2020)
Rafale: Η επιχειρησιακή διάσταση για Ελλάδα και Κύπρο με αριθμούς - Defence Review

In an earlier feature, in an attempt to break away from the trivial (Rafale: Οι δυνατότητες που το καθιστούν παράγοντα αεροπορικής κυριαρχίας για τη Πολεμική Αεροπορία - Defence Review), we explained why (there are many reasons), the choice of the Rafale was not only logical, but ideal for Greece and its Air Force.

At the end of the same special, we promised, after an analysis of the design philosophy of the French fighter, that we would come back with an analysis of the operational dimension of its entry into service. For the Aegean, the Balkans, Cyprus and the Southeastern Mediterranean in general.

We have also referred repeatedly to the Rafale's mission systems and the capabilities they provide. Other fighter aircraft have similar systems with similar capabilities. It is the combination of mission equipment, performance and fuel and weapons carrying capacity that makes the difference in the Rafale.


Let's start with some facts. Based on data from the fighter manufacturers themselves to which we will refer. We wrote in our previous feature on the Rafale's capabilities (9.5 tonnes empty weight) that compared to the Eurofighter (11,000 tonnes empty weight) it is one and a half tonnes lighter. This characteristic compensates for the greater thrust of the EJ200 engines of the latter.

The same applies to the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, also a twin-engine fighter, which is significantly larger and heavier (empty weight of 14 552 kg), with engines (two GE F414-400 engines) that deliver a total thrust of 5.In other words, the Super Hornet's excess thrust of about 2.5 tons is "cancelled out" by the fact that it is about five tons heavier (empty weight)!

The difference is less than that of the Russian and also twin-engine MiG-35. Its empty weight is 11 tons, as in the Eurofighter (1.5 tons more than the Rafale), while the excess thrust amounts to just 1,300 lbs (600 kg) for the Russian fighter.

Although it is equipped with the "weaker" engines than the three fighters mentioned above (and therefore has the lowest fuel consumption), the Rafale has the highest fuel (internal and external) and weapons carrying capacity, despite not having the highest maximum take-off weight (MTOW).

9.5 tonnes of payload compared to seven for the Eurofighter, eight for the Super Hornet and seven for the MiG-35. This astonishing number for its weight and dimensions (very close to those of the F-16!), the Rafale also combines this with the longest combat range! Finally, and its performance is comparable. 305 meters per second maximum climb rate for the Rafale, 315 for the Eurofighter, 228 for the Super Hornet and 330 meters per second for the MiG-35. Which is the biggest difference.

All this is the result of excellent aerodynamic configuration, combined with dimensions, weight and engine thrust. Therefore anywhere within the Athens FIR, but also outside its boundaries, the Rafale can reach, while maintaining loitering time. And even farther away are the weapons it can carry...

Below are a series of images and explanatory drawings from a very old presentation of the Rafale to the Air Force. It is the best way to get as complete a picture as possible of the capabilities of the French fighter and its weapons. In all roles.


Air - air missions

A-A-configuration-2-1.jpg-1-768x585.jpg


This is the range given for the Rafale in air-to-air missions at high speeds. The payload is six (currently ten with the alternative option of four being METEOR) MICA missiles and two 1250 litre RPL-711 supersonic fuel tanks in this very old illustration. With the same fuel tanks today (below) the Rafale F3-R can carry up to 10 MICA EM/IR missiles or four METEOR and six MICA EM/IR.

A-A-configuration-1-1-768x530.jpg


The 225 nautical mile combat radius depicted above in a high-speed air-to-air role can be almost doubled with this configuration. Eight MICA EM/IR or four METEOR and an equal number of MICA EM/IR with three external subsonic RPL-751 fuel tanks of 2000 litres capacity (each). Under this configuration and with a load of METEOR missiles (and from the F4 and MICA NG configuration), the Rafale will be able to patrol, strike enemy fighters from distances of more than 100 km and guide friendly fighters, staying out of range of the Turkish S-400s.

RBE-2AA-FSO-data-fusion-768x507.jpg


Detection and engagement of flying targets by the Rafale can be done either through the RBE2 AA radar, or completely passively by the OSF (or FSO) electro-optical nose-mounted assembly. Via link 16 it is possible to exchange targeting data in real time. In 2011 a Rafale had launched a MICA missile against a target flying behind it (over the shoulder shot), receiving position and targeting data from another fighter of the same type. Through the data fusion philosophy, the targeting symbology is common and simplified.

[URL='https://www.dropbox.com/s/z8vc2t407whetdm/MICA-EM-IR-advantage-768x538.jpg?dl=0%5B/img']https://www.dropbox.com/s/z8vc2t407whetdm/MICA-EM-IR-advantage-768x538.jpg?dl=0[/img[/URL]]

This illustration reveals the great operational advantage of the air-to-air MICA EM. It is guided by the fighter-carrier towards the target via RF data link until it detects it with the IR sensor on its nose and autonomously and passively engages it. This passive tracking and encapsulation does not allow the crews of enemy fighters to be warned whether an air-to-air missile has been launched against them, exactly which enemy fighter has been targeted and encapsulated, by whom and when! It is a capability that the Air Force has had since 2007 with the Mirage 2000-5Mk.2. These were grounded for the most part, under the excuse of lack of spare parts and the "impossibility" of repealing the Venizelos Law!


[b]Swing missions (air-to-air and air-to-ground/surface)[/b]
[img][URL='https://www.dropbox.com/s/t3ept9kjhfdp9rl/Swing-role-capability-768x503.jpg?dl=0%5B/img']https://www.dropbox.com/s/t3ept9kjhfdp9rl/Swing-role-capability-768x503.jpg?dl=0[/img[/URL]]
[img][URL='https://www.dropbox.com/s/231j0bkk1ywmokx/Swing-role-photo-768x451.jpg?dl=0%5B/img']https://www.dropbox.com/s/231j0bkk1ywmokx/Swing-role-photo-768x451.jpg?dl=0[/img[/URL]]

The illustration shows the fuel and weapon load configuration for swing role missions, with what was included many years ago. Namely three 2000 litre RPL-751 fuel tanks, six AASM (HAMMER) and four MICA EM/IR. The photo below shows the swing role cargo configuration as it is today. With six air-to-air missiles that are either MICA EM/IR, or two METEOR and six MICA EM/IR. Alternatively, LGBs can be carried in place of the AASMs as well as a targeting nacelle.

[img][URL='https://www.dropbox.com/s/htc52d8amlwk15s/Swing-role-configuration-768x506.jpg?dl=0%5B/img']https://www.dropbox.com/s/htc52d8amlwk15s/Swing-role-configuration-768x506.jpg?dl=0[/img[/URL]]

Illustration of the Rafale's combat radius, with swing role load configuration (it used to be as described in the illustration and now as in the photo (above) with two additional air-to-air missiles and the alternative of two of them being METEOR. The large circle depicts the combat radius with Hi-Hi-Hi flight profile (at medium and high altitudes). The small one depicts the combat radius with a Lo-Lo-Lo flight profile (low to avoid detection by enemy air defenses).

[img][URL='https://www.dropbox.com/s/kyxweo1qnbugniw/RBE2-AA-radar-768x541.jpg?dl=0%5B/img']https://www.dropbox.com/s/kyxweo1qnbugniw/RBE2-AA-radar-768x541.jpg?dl=0[/img[/URL]]

The AESA technology radar, RBE2 AA, is the most important tool for swing role capability performance. It can simultaneously track targets in the air and on the ground, providing targeting data. For conducting engagement missions against ground targets deep within enemy territory (deep strike), with a very low altitude transition flight, the automatic tracking and terrain flare avoidance (TFR) functional configuration is exploited. Of course in swing missions, a Talios targeting nacelle can be used in parallel.


[img][URL='https://www.dropbox.com/s/zpf157koqzfto5q/AASM-philosophy-768x585.jpg?dl=0%5B/img']https://www.dropbox.com/s/zpf157koqzfto5q/AASM-philosophy-768x585.jpg?dl=0[/img[/URL]]

The philosophy of AASM (HAMMER) in one illustration. One attack, up to six attacks simultaneously, to limit the exposure of the fighter-carrier to the target(s) anti-aircraft defence. Consequently increasing its survivability. In the same way, the attack on Al Wattiya Air Base, Libya was carried out. The weapon and its versions will be the subject of a special report. Its radius ranges from 20 to 70 km (it uses a propellant - rocket motor), depending on the height of release. We believe that the addition of such collections to the Air Force arsenal is very important. For obvious reasons.


[b]Strategic attack[/b]
[img][URL='https://www.dropbox.com/s/yig2nys4bstph8s/Strategic-range-768x569.jpg?dl=0%5B/img']https://www.dropbox.com/s/yig2nys4bstph8s/Strategic-range-768x569.jpg?dl=0[/img[/URL]]

Illustration of the Rafale's combat radius, including the radius of the SCALP-EG, which is given at 150 nautical miles here (278 km). In reality it is closer to 250 nautical miles. Another valuable operational capability, available to very few air forces around the world, that the Greek political system has devalued in recent years.

[img][URL='https://www.dropbox.com/s/loejxe3rbmwei8i/External-stores-configuration-768x559.jpg?dl=0%5B/img']https://www.dropbox.com/s/loejxe3rbmwei8i/External-stores-configuration-768x559.jpg?dl=0[/img[/URL]]


We conclude with this extremely informative illustration. To which Rafale cargo hanger stations, what can be carried. Those that can accept external fuel tanks (wet) are shown in red. The Super Hornet and MiG-35 have as many wet stations, but the former has only 11 cargo suspension stations (compared to 14 on the Rafale) and the latter only nine!

(thanks to the original poster)
 
Last edited:

randomradio

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In an earlier tribute, in an attempt to get away from the trivial ( Rafale: Οι δυνατότητες που το καθιστούν παράγοντα αεροπορικής κυριαρχίας για τη Πολεμική Αεροπορία - Defence Review ), we explained the reasons (there are many), his choice Rafale was not just logical, but ideal for Greece and its Air Force.

At the end of the same tribute, we had promised after an analysis of the design philosophy of the French fighter, that we would return with an analysis of the operational dimension of its entry into service. For the area of the Aegean, the Balkans, Cyprus and the Southeastern Mediterranean in general.

We have also repeatedly referred to Rafale's mission systems and capabilities. Other fighter planes have systems of similar capabilities. It is the combination of shipping equipment, performance and fuel capacity and weapons that make the difference in Rafale.

We start with some data. Based on data from the manufacturers of the fighters themselves that we will refer to. We wrote in our previous tribute to the capabilities of the Rafale (9.5 tons empty weight), that in relation to the Eurofighter (empty weight 11,000 tons) it is one and a half tons lighter. Feature that compensates for the greater thrust of the latter EJ200 engines.

The same goes for the also twin-engine F / A-18E / F Super Hornet, a clearly larger and heavier (empty weight 14,552 kg) engine fighter (two GE F414-400), which deliver a total thrust of 5,500 pounds (2500 kg), larger than the two SNECMA M88-2s carried by the Rafale. In other words, the excess thrust of about 2.5 tons of the Super Hornet, "disappears" from the fact that it is about five tons heavier (empty weight)!

The difference is smaller compared to the Russian and also twin-engine MiG-35. Its empty weight is 11 tons, as in the Eurofighter (1.5 tons larger than the Rafale), while the excess thrust amounts to just 1,300 pounds (600 kg) for the Russian fighter.

Although it is equipped with the "weakest" engines compared to the three fighters mentioned above (so it has the lowest fuel consumption), the Rafale has the highest capacity for fuel (internal and external) and weapons, despite the fact that it does not have the largest maximum takeoff weight (MTOW).

9.5 tonnes of cargo compared to seven of the Eurofighter, eight of the Super Hornet and seven of the MiG-35. This amazing number for its weight and dimensions (very close to those of the F-16!), Rafale combines it with the largest battle radius! Finally, its performance is comparable. 305 meters per second maximum climb for the Rafale, 315 for the Eurofighter, 228 for the Super Hornet and 330 meters per second for the MiG-35. Which is the biggest difference.

All this is the result of excellent aerodynamic configuration, combined with dimensions, weight and thrust of engines. Therefore, anywhere within the Athens FIR, but also outside its limits, Rafale can arrive, maintaining a stay time on station (loitering time). Even further away are the weapons he can carry.

Below is a series of pictures and explanatory drawings, from a very old presentation of Rafale in the Air Force. It's the best way to get a complete picture of the capabilities of the French fighter and its weapons. In all roles.

- Air - air shipments

A-A-Supersonic-Intercept.jpg
A-A-configuration-2-1.jpg-1.jpg

This is the radius given to the Rafale in high-speed air-to-air missions. The payload is six (currently ten with the option of four being METEOR) MICA missiles and two 1250-liter RPL-711 supersonic fuel tanks in this very old display. With the same fuel tanks today (below) the Rafale F3-R can carry up to 10 MICA EM / IR missiles or four METEORs and six MICA EM / IRs.

A-A-configuration-1-1.jpg

The battle radius of 225 nautical miles depicted above in an air-to-air role at high speeds can be almost doubled with this configuration. Eight MICA EM / IRs or four METEORs and an equal number of MICA EM / IRs with three external sound tanks RPL-751 with a capacity of 2000 liters (each). Under this configuration and with a load of METEOR missiles (both from the F4 and MICA NG configurations), the Rafale will be able to patrol, strike enemy fighters from distances greater than 100 km and guide friendly fighters, staying out of range of Turkish S -400.

RBE-2AA-FSO-data-fusion.jpg

The detection and entrapment of flying targets by the Rafale can be done either via the RBE2 AA radar, or completely passively from the OSF (or FSO) optical assembly on the muzzle. Through link 16 there is the possibility of exchanging targeting data in real time. In 2011 a Rafale fired a MICA missile at a target flying over its shoulder (shooting over the shoulder), taking position and targeting data from another fighter of the same type. Through data fusion philosophy, targeting symbolism is common and simplified.

MICA-EM-IR-advantage.jpg

This illustration reveals the great operational advantage of the MICA EM air-to-air. It is guided by the fighter - carrier to the target via RF data link until it locates it with the IR sensor in its muzzle and locks it autonomously and passively. This passive tracking and trapping does not allow the enemy fighter crews to be warned about whether an air-to-air missile has been fired at them, which enemy fighter has been targeted and trapped, by whom and when! It is a possibility that the Air Force has had since 2007 with the Mirage 2000-5Mk.2. Those who were stuck for the most part, with the excuse of the lack of spare parts and the "impossibility" of the abolition of the Venizelos Law!

- Double role (swing) missions (air-air and air-ground / surface)

Swing-role-capability.jpg
Swing-role-photo.jpg

The illustration shows the configuration of fuel cargo and weapons for parallel - dual role missions (swing role), with what it included many years ago. That is, three 2000 liter RPL-751 fuel tanks, six AASM (HAMMER) and four MICA EM / IR. The photo below shows the swing role load configuration, as it is today. With six air-to-air missiles that are either MICA EM / IR, or two METEOR and six MICA EM / IR. Alternatively, LGBs as well as a targeting fuse can be transferred to the AASM site.

Swing-role-configuration.jpg

Illustration of the Rafale battle radius, with swing role load configuration (it used to be as described in the illustration and today as in the photo (above) with two additional air-to-air missiles and the alternative two of them being METEOR. battle profile with Hi-Hi-Hi flight profile (in medium and high altitudes).

RBE2-AA-radar.jpg

AESA technology radar, RBE2 AA, is the most important tool for swing role performance. It can simultaneously track targets in the air and on the ground, providing targeting data. In order to carry out ground attack missions, deep inside the enemy territory (deep strike), with a flight going to a very low altitude, the functional configuration of automatic monitoring and avoidance of ground eruptions (TFR) is utilized. Of course, in swing missions, a Talios targeting fuse can also be used.

AASM-philosophy.jpg

The philosophy of AASM (HAMMER) in one illustration. An attack, up to six attacks at a time, to limit the exposure of the fighter - carrier to the anti-aircraft defense of the target (s). Therefore increasing its viability. In the same way, the Al Wattiya air base in Libya was attacked. We will make a special reference to the weapon and its versions. Its radius ranges from 20 to 70 kilometers (it uses a propulsion vessel - rocket engine), depending on the height of release. We believe that the addition of such collections to the Air Force arsenal is very important. For obvious reasons.

-Strategic impact

Strategic-range.jpg

Imaging of the Rafale battle radius, including the SCALP-EG radius. Which is given at 150 nautical miles here (278 km). It is actually close to 250 nautical miles. Another valuable and available operational capability to very few air forces around the world, which the Greek political system has devalued in recent years.

External-stores-configuration.jpg

We close with this extremely informative display. Which Rafale cargo stations can transport what. Red indicates those that can accept external fuel tanks (wet). The Super Hornet and MiG-35 also have so many wet stations. The first, however, has only 11 cargo suspension stations (compared to Rafale's 14) and the second only nine!
 

thinkingcap81

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Jun 2, 2019
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Why utilize IAF aircrafts when they're already reeling under a shortage of combat aircraft & can't spare any for tasks easily & may I add legitimately under the INs domain.

Ideally if we're looking at developing an expeditionary force on the lines of the USMC it should begin it's journey under the IN with the theaterization policy implemented before it's spun off in due course into a separate command where in the aircraft component will play a vital role. That's where TEDBF comes in.

Now while this is a futuristic requirement it's not that far away into the future too & may well see external base operations commence before the decade is out with whatever assets we have ( why ? Because the Chinese are coming in full strength into the IOR ) .

Then of course there's the domestic component which I've already listed & which'd form the bulk of the requirements.
They won't have to take from the existing aircraft. IN will procure new aircraft like Rafale M / F18 SH / TEDBF exclusively for carrier-borne operations. which i presume will have limited aircraft requirements (even if it's 100 odd) and hence it may not be worthwhile to develop TEDBF. For land-based aircraft they can use Tejas MK2 / Rafale etc. This will free up resources for developing AMCA.
 

thinkingcap81

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The AMCA will become optionally manned around 2035. One of the objectives of AMCA is to perform most if not all missions without a man in the loop.

Automated takeoff and landing (ATOL), automated missions and auto air-to-air refueling (Auto AAR)

The AMCA, he said, will go towards sixth generation and “one of the technologies that is required for the AMCA Mk-2 is to be optionally manned”. The aircraft can be flown with or without a pilot, depending on the mission. “So that is a capability that is coming on AMCA Mk-2, and that is being proven on Naval prototypes. Even the TEDBF will have the capability, with automatic take-off and landing.”

The problem with 7th gen isn't software, it's hardware. The software will be taken care of with AMCA by 2035 and hardware will come in through ISRO's work on their manned and unmanned space shuttle programs. By the time our 7th gen hits the shelves, contemporary technologies going into it would be in use at least for 10-15 years.

Look, fighter aircraft development follows a logical sequence. It's basically countries reacting to what other countries have achieved. Because of the Su-57, the Americans began the NGAD due to the urgency to respond to it. And the Chinese are responding to the Americans. So they are working with the limits of technology that exist today. For example, they have no choice but to design the aircraft to be manned, so they need a cockpit. Adding a cockpit restricts the jet to certain limits. We have no need to respond to any of the three powers, so we do not have to follow their sequence of development. When we work on our next fighter, it's gonna be based on the limits of technology available in 2040, so that includes space shuttle tech, advanced AI etc. By then, we won't need a cockpit, so our fighter would be built very differently in comparison, up to the very limits of engineering itself.

So what they do between 2025 and 2040, we don't care. And what we do between 2035 and 2050 is obviously going to be very different from what they did. Our starting points aren't the same. And it's pretty dumb to expect that we only plan on duplicating their effort.
Automatic landing and takeoff may be achievable and is not outside the realm of present reality. But we are looking if extensive AI based stuff possibly without having a human pilot in the aircraft. This AI has to be so capable that it can perform its tasks independently should the likely situation of communications disruptions arise. AI, ML and associated hardware are new technologies which will be a closely guarded secret, just like latest jet engine technology. Even if we pour tonnes of money it is not a guarantee of high-level capability. There's a lot of difference when decently capable people work on a technology and the best minds work on it.

I'll stick to my stand that unless we are willing to overhaul our education environment and arrest brain drain by offering them incentives, we'll be runners up only, and this is simply not good enough.

Going off-topic :unsure:.
 

_Anonymous_

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They won't have to take from the existing aircraft. IN will procure new aircraft like Rafale M / F18 SH / TEDBF exclusively for carrier-borne operations. which i presume will have limited aircraft requirements (even if it's 100 odd) and hence it may not be worthwhile to develop TEDBF. For land-based aircraft they can use Tejas MK2 / Rafale etc. This will free up resources for developing AMCA.
Irrespective of what the IN says & amateur experts here pontificate on , the Rafales / Hornets , if they come won't be more than a squadron . That's my assessment.

I'm speculating the IAC - 2 is not going to have more than 50k Tons of displacement . It's going to be more on the lines of a stretched IAC-1 thanks to budget constraints. That's a reality the IN has reconciled itself to grudgingly.

TEDBF will come & in the numbers I've mentioned with the MiG-29K taking over off shore patrolling from land bases being replaced by TEDBF once all the requisitioned numbers manifest themselves. Once again this is my speculation. Take it for what it's worth.

Finally , instead of having their air assets restricted to only a land based role by opting for the Mk-1 or Mk-2 , the IN would always prefer investing in resources which can fit dual roles.

In any case not all the air bases being envisioned in the A&N or Lakshadweep or even out of India bases can afford the luxury of having a 1-2 km runaway on islands .
 
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randomradio

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Automatic landing and takeoff may be achievable and is not outside the realm of present reality. But we are looking if extensive AI based stuff possibly without having a human pilot in the aircraft. This AI has to be so capable that it can perform its tasks independently should the likely situation of communications disruptions arise. AI, ML and associated hardware are new technologies which will be a closely guarded secret, just like latest jet engine technology. Even if we pour tonnes of money it is not a guarantee of high-level capability. There's a lot of difference when decently capable people work on a technology and the best minds work on it.

I'll stick to my stand that unless we are willing to overhaul our education environment and arrest brain drain by offering them incentives, we'll be runners up only, and this is simply not good enough.

Going off-topic :unsure:.

It's less complex than self driving cars. This is one of those areas where the civilians are ahead, so 10 years down the line you will see it in the military.

It's also how drones are transitioning from RPVs to semi-autonomous to fully autonomous.