Thursday, April 2, 2015

Aircraft

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What seems to be the final stage of negotiation between India and France over the procurement of 126 Rafale fighter jets is turning into a circus, where New Delhi is walking on a tightrope, between approving the deal with dramatic cost increase (compared to the original budget) or ditching the plan, risking further delays in the IAF modernization.

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Dassault Aviation and Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) will be ‘joint prime contractors’ to manufacture 118 Rafale fighters in India clearing the way as to who will assume responsibility for timely delivery and quality of the aircraft. The decision was described by Dassault chief executive Eric Trappier as a ‘new development’, implying that it may have been arrived at during the last few days or weeks.

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The Secretary of Defense has authorized the Air Force to place up to a total of 36 A-10 aircraft into BAI status. Although Congress has authorized 36 of the A-10 aircraft to be put into BAI status, the Air Force has elected for the time being to place fewer in BAI status.

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72 aircraft on display here at Aero India 2015 are demonstrating the scope and size this airshow has achieved in its 10th edition. Quite a few of these aircraft are made in India, among them the Indian Tejas (Light Combat Aircraft - LCA), Light Combat Helicopter (LCH Dhruv) – all were developed and manufactured in India by Hindustan Aeronautics (HAL).

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Shadowed by the huge growth in defense acquisitions from the US, Israel remains one of the fastest growing defense suppliers in India, a position that is particularly impressive given the fact that Israel is not selling India the main platforms, but the systems and subsystems that are critical for their operational success.

The Indian Air Force is planning to field over 270 Su-30MKI fighters in 14 squadrons. Photo: Tamir Eshel, Defense-Update

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IRKUT Corporation of Russia will complete deliveries of Su-30MKI aircraft kits to Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) this year. By that time, IRKUT Corporation will have successfully delivered 222 aircraft kits for assembly at (HAL) Nashik plant

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Dassault Aviation confirmed today the Arab Republic of Egypt’s decision to equip its air force with the Rafale fighter jet. "This decision is a continuation of our cooperation that dates back to the 1970s, and has seen the Mirage 5, the Alpha Jet and the Mirage 2000 fly in the colors of Egypt." Dassault commented. The Egyptian decision marks the second international selection of the French fighter, following the Indian selection of Rafale in 2012.

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Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) is introducing a new maritime surveillance, and anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare aircraft at Aero India 2015. The platform is based on a specially modified Bombardier Global 5000 business jet, configured with the new generation ELI-3360 Maritime Patrol Aircraft (MPA) system.

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DARPA is seeking to develop new ways to launch and deploy small satellites in orbit. One of the concepts being explored by the agency is the Air Launched Assist Space Access (ALASA), seeking to reduce cost, time and weather constraints for launching small satellites from an aircraft.

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Embraer today successfully performed the first flight of the new military transport and aerial refueling jet, the KC-390.

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