Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Indian Navy uplift

Neelam Mathews

After years of procuring equipment from overseas, the Indian Navy is keen to modernise its capability using its own indigenous platforms. NEELAM MATHEWS reports.

As security challenges in the region emerge, India is increasingly focusing on modernisation and capability building of its military. The Indian Navy’s guideline document, ‘Indian Naval Indigenization Plan (INIP) 2015-2030,’ articulates its requirement for advanced systems for its platforms and, while the policy priority is clear that there should be a commitment to maximise indigenous production, it does not underscore the need for quality. LCA v/s Global Fighter Clearly, speed is of the essence as delays in procurement decisions in the past have plagued the growth of upgradation. For instance, the naval single engine, Compound-Delta-Wing, tailless Light Combat Aircraft (LCA Mk2) being designed and developed by the government-Aeronautical Development Agency, along with state defence manufacturer Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) has been rejected by the Navy as “it does not meet the qualitative requirements of the IN,” Chief of Naval Staff Admiral Sunil Lanba told AEROSPACE.

“We need the fighters sooner rather than later.” He added, while the Navy would continue to help the agency to develop the carrier-based LCA for technology demonstration, it would be simultaneously fulfilling its need for 20 alternative (twin-engine) fighters through a bid soon. This would likely put Boeing F/A-18E/F and Dassault Aviation Rafale in the fray. Lanba indicated he was looking at the fighters “within the next five or six years.” The project is independent of the Make in India plans of the Indian Air Force for a single-engined fighter for which OEMs have had discussions with the Ministry of Defense. Presently two naval LCA Technology Demonstrators are flying without any payloads……Read much much more in

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