May 5, 2010
NEW DELHI — Ongoing flight trials of new Colored Multifunctional Displays (CMFDs) for Sukhoi Su-30MKI fighters are expected to be over by mid-May.
The CMFDs were produced by Samtel HAL Display Systems. They were cleared for flight testing by the Regional Center for Military Airworthiness in 2008 and flights began in April of this year.
Ground testing and 10 sorties — during the day and night — have been carried out. LDP (laser designated pod) and gunfire testing is complete.
This is the first time Indian-made MFDs are being integrated on Su-30 MKI aircraft in India.
“Integration of these indigenously developed MFDs on Su-30MKI aircraft is in line with the thrust by the [Indian defense ministry] on manufacturing indigenous products for defense requirements,” says Puneet Kaura, executive director of Samtel Display Systems.
The MFDs will be integrated on Block III, Block IV and the upcoming Block V aircraft. Integration with 53 Block III aircraft will end by next year, integration on 47 Block IV aircraft will be complete by 2012, and 42 Block V aircraft will be done by 2013.
Around 350 Su-30MKI aircraft are ultimately required by the Indian air force. The total order has a potential value of $56 million over the next few years.
- Neelam Mathews