DAC gives the nod to buy 12 Su-30 jets, other military equipment
The Defence Acquisition Council, which convened on Friday, approved the procurement of 12 Su-30MKI planes for the Indian Air Force (IAF). These would be manufactured under license by Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. (HAL) and will cost less than Rs. 11,000 crore. The IAF has been lobbying for more Sukhois as well as 21 MiG-29s.
What is the DAC?
- The Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) is India’s decision-making authority for approving capital. The Defence Minister chairs the council, which includes the following members:
- The Chief of Defence Staff (CDS)
- Army, Navy, and Air Force Chiefs
- Minister of Defence
- The DAC has approved the following proposals:
- BrahMos cruise missiles
- Electronic warfare (EW) systems from Shakti
- Ground-based autonomous system for mechanized infantry and armoured units based on utility helicopters.
Which aircraft are being acquired through DAC from Russia?
- Su-30MKI Jets Approved: The DAC approved the purchase of 12 Su-30MKI fighter jets for the Indian Air Force (IAF). These aircraft would be constructed under license by Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. (HAL) and are likely to cost less than Rs. 11,000 crore.
- Additional Sukhois and MiG-29s: The IAF has advocated for the purchase of additional Sukhoi Su-30MKI planes as well as 21 MiG-29 fighter aircraft.
What is the speciality of Su-30MKI jets?
- The Sukhoi Su-30MKI is a multi-role, all-weather, long-range fighter with twin jets. It has a maximum horizontal flight speed of Mach 1.9 and a rate of ascent of 300m/s. The Su-30MKI has an internal fuel range of 3,000 km, allowing for a 3.75-hour combat mission. The in-flight refuelling (IFR) technology extends the flight time to 10 hours with a combat radius of 3,000 km. The Su-30MKI has a maximum range of 8,000 kilometres with two refuellings.
- The Su-30MKI is one of the world’s most heavily equipped fighters.
- Weapons system consist of:
- It is capable of transporting the Indian-made Brahmos supersonic missiles.
- A 30mm Gsh-30-1 gun
- 12 hardpoints for rockets and bombs
- The Su-30MKI is a Sukhoi Su-30 version. Its capabilities are comparable to those of the Sukhoi Su-35, with which it shares many features and components. The Su-30MKI has a greater operating range than the Rafale.
What are the advantages of having su-30MKI for the Indian Air Force?
- Air Superiority: The Su-30MKI is a multi-role fighter aircraft with strong air superiority capability. In aerial combat, it may engage and dominate enemy aircraft, ensuring control of the skies during wars.
- Versatility: This aircraft is adaptable and can carry out a variety of duties such as air defence, ground attack, and reconnaissance. Because of its versatility, it is a great tool in a variety of operational settings.
- Interoperability: The Su-30MKI may be incorporated into the IAF’s current Su-30 fleet, simplifying logistics, maintenance, and training. This shared ground improves interoperability and eliminates operational difficulties.
- Longe-Range Strike: It can carry a range of air-to-ground bombs, allowing it to engage ground targets with pinpoint accuracy across great distances. For strategic strike operations, this is critical.
- License Manufacturing: Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. (HAL)’s decision to license-manufacture Su-30MKIs in India aids in the development of India’s defence manufacturing capabilities and decreases dependency on imports.
- Technology Transfer: The Su-30MKI cooperation with Russia is likely to have included technology transfer agreements, enabling India access to advanced aerospace technologies and production techniques.
- Modernization: The purchase of Su-30MKI aircraft is part of India’s ongoing attempts to modernize its military forces, ensuring that they stay technologically sophisticated and capable of dealing with growing security threats.
- Operational Readiness: Adding more Su-30MKIs to the fleet helps to maintain operational readiness and closes the fighter squadron strength gap in the IAF, which is critical for establishing a robust defence posture.
- Strategic Flexibility: The Su-30MKI gives India strategic flexibility because it can perform both offensive and defensive missions, depending on the changing security scenario.