Friday, March 27, 2009

Can They Or Can’t They?

Is there any existing shipyard in India that can undertake modular warship-building? For that you ought to look for some visual signs of it, instead of asking any of the existing shipbuilders, be it Goa Shipyard Ltd (GSL), Kolkata-based Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineers Ltd (GRSE), the Mumbai-based Mazagon Docks Ltd (MDL), or Cochin Shipyard Ltd (CSL). Because one will only get a warped answer that skirts the entire issue of modular shipbuilding and tries to oversimplify the industrial challenges. Before we go any further, let us examine in simple terms what modular warship-building is all about. Simply put, it was pioneered by Germany’s Blohm + Voss and ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems (now grouped as the German Naval Group, or GNG), with the scope of work to be performed consisting of integrated modular designs (using TRIBON CAD/CAM software) for both onboard and off board systems that are designed specifically for the varied deployment of standardised modules (weapons, electronics and the ship’s technical equipment) which, in addition, are connected with the power supply, the air-conditioning and ventilation system and the data network for example, via standardised interfaces. All the components needed to run a specific system are accommodated in a single module. Depending upon the particular task they are required to perform, a distinction is made between weapons, electronics and the ship’s technical modules. Containers, pallets and mast modules are installed during the construction phase. Such modularity allows a wide range of choice in the selection of the on-board systems, whether it be with regard to the integration of customer-supplied systems or the use of products that the customer already has in service from various manufacturers. By simultaneously building the warship’s platform at a shipyard and the modules at the suppliers’ premises, a significant savings in both time and cost can be achieved. The modular construction principle also reduces the costs of maintaining and modernising the vessels during both periodic refits and service life-extension programmes (SLEP). Following the example and standards set by the GNG, other European shipyards like The Netherlands’ Schelde Naval Shipbuilding, the UK’s BAE Systems and Italy’s Fincantieri have actively embraced such shipbuilding practices and processes.

This now leads us to the question at hand: can shipyards like GSL, CSL, MDL and GRSE presently undertake modular warship-building? The answer is a clear no, as they are not only not equipped with the required industrial infrastructure, but they do not have any standardised roadmap or time-bound infrastructure development implementation plan. A cursory look around any of these shipyards will reveal that none of them even have syncrolifts, which must be accompanied by related shiplift piers, and dry berth. For modular shipbuilding the syncrolift (for transferring the various modules into the final enclosed assembly hall), dry berths and assembly halls must all be connected by a modern, land-level ship-transfer system. The only such syncrolift that exists within India is the one at INS Kadamba (Project Seabird) in Karwar, having been ordered on May 20, 2002 at a cost of US$32 million and delivered by Rolls-Royce Marine Systems in late 2004. Configured as a 10,000-ton shiplifter, it is a large marine elevator used for lifting warships out of, or lowering ships into, the water. To dock a warship, the platform and cradle are lowered into the water, and the vessel is then moved into place over the platform. When in position, the syncrolift raises the platform, removing the vessel from the water. Work on the vessel can then be done in situ, or the vessel transferred offshore, leaving the syncrolift available to dock other vessels. On completion, the process is reversed. The hoists, platform and associated ship-transfer system were all made in India and the project was managed by Syncrolift Inc, the world leader in shiplift systems with 224 installations in 67 countries.

Making matters worse is the disparate state of military-industrial cooperation between the Indian shipyards and their foreign counterparts. For instance, GSL has a longstanding agreement with Schelde Naval Shipbuilding, The Netherlands’ Maritime Research Institute (MARIN) and Haskoning Nederland BV, and Germany’s Raytheon Anschutz GmbH. MDL, on the other hand, openly declares its preference for ARMARIS of France, while CSL is now in bed with Fincantieri, with GRSE preferring to team up with the GNG. These varying and competing industrial tie-ups are now indulging in intense lobbying within the MoD for securing the contract for supplying the Indian Navy with seven Project 17A guided-missile frigates (FFG), seven Project 15B guided-missile destroyers (DDG) and up to three amphibious assault vessels. While the Navy’s Directorate of Naval Design (DND) has clearly indicated its preference for adopting the GNG’s proven and globally popular MEKO concept of modular design/construction, BAE Systems, ARMARIS, Schelde Naval Shipbuilding and Fincantieri haven’t yet lost hope and are exerting intense pressure on the MoD to at least share the cake (comprising the projected FFG, DDG and LPH projects) as a compromise. The latest entrant into the fray is South Korea’s Hanjin Heavy Industries & Construction, which is offering the Dokdo-class LPH and KDX-3 DDG.

As far as selecting the design of the Project 17A FFG goes, ARMARIS’ Fremm FFG, the GNG’s F-125 FFG and Navantia’s F-310 FFG are likely to be shortlisted. The foreign shipyard whose FFG design wins the tender will be required to build two FFGs at its own yard, using craftsmen from the selected lead Indian shipyard. For the Project 17A FFG, the Navy is seeking revolutionary solutions aimed at seamlessly operating under various scenarios under a global deployment spectrum. For instance, the Navy wants the vessel’s dwell-time in the area of operations of up to one year, without having to return to its homeport for scheduled maintenance during this phase. This concept of operations is thus aimed at doubling the warship’s time-on-station between major overhauls by maintaining the warship’s uninterrupted operational availability, and drastically cutting down (by several weeks) on long-transit times. In addition, a high degree of on-board automation will be specified to enable the warship to be manned by a crew complement of less than 100, with the crew complement on deployment being swapped at-sea according to a four-monthly cycle. An identical concept will be specified for the three planned seven Project 15B DDGs.

On the Indian Navy’s plans to acquire up to three LPH-based multi-role support ships (MRSS), a total of eight companies from The Netherlands (Schelde Shipbuilding with its Enforcer LPD), France (Armaris’ Mistral LHD), the UK (BAE Systems Marine’s Ocean-class LHD), Germany (ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems’ MHD-150), Italy (Finantieri’s 20,000-tonne LHD), the US (Raytheon’s San Antonio-class LPD-17), Spain (Navantia’s 21,500-tonne Strategic Projection Ship, two of which were ordered by Australia on October 9, 2007) and South Korea (Hanjin Heavy Industries & Construction’s 14,500-tonne assault landing ship, three of which have been ordered for the ROK Navy) have begun lining up for marketing their respective solutions. It is believed that the Indian Navy originally desired a LPD design capable of undertaking sea logistics and humanitarian relief operations. Now, however, the Navy has projected a requirement for helicopter carriers (LHD) that will also host rear flooding decks to accommodate armoured wheeled/tracked amphibious assault vehicles and LCAC-type assault hovercraft. This means the MRSS will in essence be a LHD that will also be capable of supporting ‘over-the-horizon assaults’ by heliborne and LCAC-borne infantry forces. That being the case, the Navy’s to-be-selected MRSS will have to host on board at least six medium-lift utility helicopters.—Prasun K. Sengupta


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Pierre Zorin said...

Spot on.India has not developed industrially as much as China. Indian workplaces and training systems as well as equipment need modernizing FIRST and at a blistering pace before Western advanced technologies can be adapted into an indigenous platform.India's strength is in computer related areas but along with defence modernisation, it needs heavy capital investment in its industries, skills development and workforce management. Better to watch, learn and then duplicate than give in to ego and end up in disaster.

Harpreet said...

Is there any chance for private shipyards to join the race. L&T in particular is coming up with the largest and most modern shipyard in Tamil Nadu. Private shipyards may better utilize technology infused from naval projects to boost India's position in the shipbuilding industry.
Also please clarify P15B status. I was under the impression that GOI has already cleared the proposal for 4 P15B destroyers and placement of order with MDL is imminent. That might indicate IN has completed P15B design, so this may be an iterative design of P15 series rather than a completely new warship like P17A.

Anonymous said...

prasun please look at your last blogs and answer my question.

Kannan said...

I hope we go the navy way of things and let germans do the work on first two frigates.a kilo taking 10 years for mid-life upgrade in Mazagon docks is pretty scary.But off topic..
Please throw light on India's precision guided we have smart bombs under development?..
Have heard something about Sudarshan..
The project at times sounds like a Krasnopol/Excalibur thing but at other times it is described as a missile with 800-1000KM range..with laser guidance..pretty hard to digest that claim..

Abhinaba said...

Prasunda, can you inform how our IAC is built in CSL?

Harsh said...

prasunda, did you include addendum 3 & 4 to your previous article?

Kannan said...

there is news of $ 2 billion air-defence shield with this Spyder deal or MR-SAM/LR-SAM deal or a new deal for ARROW ABM..All articles are vague on specific systems they are referring to..
glad if u could throw some light..

Abhinaba said...

Is BARAK-2/NG/8 capable to shoot down sea skipping hypersonic cruise missile?

Abhinaba said...

Please, read the questione as --sea skimming--.Sorry for mistake.

Anonymous said...

Ajai Shukla clearly mentioned that DCNS was the favourite for the Project 17A frigates. However there is no mention of DCNS in your article!

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Pierre Zorin: I couldn't agree with you more!

To Harpreet: Contrary to what you're thinking, the real money does not come from naval shipbuilding contracts, but from making merchant vessels and related equipment, and the track records of Japanese, South Korean and Chinese shipyards are striking examples of this. L & T is also following a similar strategy and will stand to gain most from the projected plans for building the SSBN and three SSGNs provided the DRDO's ATV technology demonstration project is successful. Regarding the follow-on orders for locally-built DDGs, the Cabinet Committee on National Security has cleared the construction of a follow-on four Project 15A Kolkata-class DDGs. The Navy's DND is not involved in designing either the Project 17A FFG or Project 15B DDG as both these designs will be of imported origin, this being because the technologies to be incorporated on board these vessels is beyond the reach of Indian companies. Hence, for purposes of technology leapfrog, both the seven Project 17A FFGs and seven Project 15B DDGs will be built to foreign designs. Regretably, both these projects are terribly behind schedule (by at least three years) and their induction is unlikely to take place before 2018.

To Kannan: Sudarshan is nothing but the reverse-engineered laser guidance kit of the type India had earlier acquired from Raytheon and Elbit Systems.

To Abhinaba: The way the IAC is being built is the same as the Project 17 FFGs and Project 15A DDGs and Project 28A ASW corvettes are being built,.i.e. the labour-intensive manner whereby five skilled workers are required to the job which only one worker can. You will be shocked if you were to compare the total number of man-hours of work involved in building one FFG/DDG by an Indian shipyard, with that of foreign shipyards. The Barak NG MR-SAM and its derivative LR-SAM variant will in theory be capable of shooting down subsonic/supersonic and hypersonic sea skimming anti-ship missiles, PROVIDED the early warning process is that of a proven and robust network-centric type, i.e. involving not only the platform-centric AESA radars/long-range optronic sensors, but also helicopter-based AEW & C platforms and space-based missile launch detection systems, since in future even intermediate-range ballistic missiles may be employed for targetting aircraft carrier-based battle groups.

To Harsh: I'm working on those attendums as of now. Will announce their uploading soon. Do stay tuned.

To Kannan: The Spyder is an E-SHORADS and has nothing to do with the MR-SAM/LR-SAM projects. While the E-SHORADS is being imported off-the-shelf, the MR-SAM/LR-SAM projects are joint R & D/co-production ventures.

To Anon@9:07AM: When it comes to working on foreign contracts it is not DCNS that is the point of contact, but ARMARIS, which is joint venture of DCNS and THALES. Now, let me point out some factual flaws in BROADSWORD's article that you've quoted:
1) The lead foreign design/modular hull fabrication consultant to be selected for both the Project 17A FFG and Project 15B DDG will NOT be chosen by any MoD-owned shipyard, but by the Indian Navy's DND. As BROADSWORD's story was based on news inputs from MDL, consequently it was only the MDL-proposed industrial tie-up (that already exists due to the on-going Scorpene SSK project) that was highlighted. Therefore, it is at best a half-truth.
2) Because of two parallel projects (Project 17A FFG and Project 15B DDG), reporters often get confused about which OEM is offering what for which project. For instance, Navantia of Spain, ARMARIS of France and the GNG are offering Project 17A-based FFG designs, while Fincantieri of Italy, Russia's Rosoboronexport, BAE Systems and South Korea's Hanjin are offering designs for the Project 15B DDG. This distinction is not drawn in BROADSWORD's article.
3) IF the Project 17A FFGs are concurrently built by both MDL and GRSE, this will by no means be the first time two shipyards would be fabricating identical hulls. For this was also done before by these two yards when it came to the Project 25A Kora-class corvettes. Even the hulls of the Project 16 and Project 16A FFGs were more or less the same and were built by MDL and GRSE.
Bottomline: For drafting a comprehensive story on naval shipbuilding, mere editorial inputs from one single shipyard will give you only one angle, instead of presenting the total picture.

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Kannan: The Type 877EKM SSK INS Sindhukirti was ripped open in the mid-1990s without Russian approval/licence at Vizag-based Hindustan Shipyard, not at MDL. This SSK, by the way, has been written off by the Navy and is no more part of the Navy's ORBAT.

Anonymous said...

So how come everyone is claiming that the Kilo class submarine INS sindhukirti has been at the docks for last 10 years when the contract to retrofit the submarine was signed in october 2006. Here is the directors reprt from Hindustan shipyards (read pg-4)
Raises a lot of questions ?

Prasun K Sengupta said...

The SSK was ripped apart in the 1990s without Russian authorisation. While that was the easy part, putting it back together was far more complex and beyond the capability of Hindustan Shipyard Ltd. Thus, the MoD demanded that Hindustan Shipyard formally approach the Russian shipyards/SSK deigners and sign a contract to make the SSK operational ASAP. This contract was signed in 2006 but a year later the Vizag-based shipyard itself became bankrupt. A real comedy of embarrassing errors! That's management MoD-style!

Nava said...


Well, this MR-SAM\LR-SAM\Barak-NG deal, due to its size (cost) and meaning for several indigenous programs, has stirred up some controversy... Do you know whether the quoted figures (ranging between 1.5 and 2.5 billion) include all the costs of the planned deployment, including various radars and control systems? Or will costs swell up further?

Prasun K Sengupta said...

The non-recurring expenditure for the MR-SAM/LR-SAM projects is higher than normal simply because this is a joint R & D effort. Those claiming this figure to be much higher than what it would take to buy imported systems off-the-shelf don't seem to understand that the cost of setting up the domestic military-industrial infrastructure for producing such missiles and their related command-and-control systems also has to be factored into the equation. All the figures being quoted are only for these two joint R & D projects and their related military-industrial infrastructure reqmts, and do not include the deployment costs.

Prasun K Sengupta said...

Anonymous said... prasun any idea if the navy will initiate any purely AD destroyer class? the P-15B may be ? reports also talk of land attack capability of P-15B, is that indicative of the nirbhay LACM ? LR-SAM/MR-SAM + Brahmos + LACM + Barak-1 would be quite a load, what would you expect its weight to be?
You have knowingly or unknowingly brought up an interesting point. As far as the Navy’s future principal surface combatants (FFGs and DDGs) go they will be multi-role and network-centric, and not platform-centric, just as the six Project 1135.6 FFGs and the three Project 17 FFGs will be. This means they can launch multi-role cruise missiles for anti-ship strike and land attack. But like I said earlier several times, the Nirbhay will NOT be a cruise missile until an indigenous turbofan is available to power it. With the Russian 36M turbofan the Nirbhay will NEVER be a cruise missile, period. In terms of vessel size and displacement, there’s a reason why the Project 15 Delhi-class DDGs and the earlier Project 16 Godavari-class FFGs and Project 16A Brahmaputra-class FFGs are longer and have greater displacements than their Western counterparts: post-Falklands war the Navy was adamant about ensuring redundancy and battle damage survivability and therefore chose the conservative Soviet concept of having multiple citadels within the vessel from where effective command-and-control of the entire vessel could be exercised. While on the Kashin 2-class DDG there’s a total of three citadels (each with its own independent power generation-cum NBC filtration system), on the Delhi-class DDG the number of citadels were hiked to six, with each one containing one distinct element of the DDG’s control systems like the Integrated Platform Management System (IPMS), Integrated Machinery Control System (IMCS), Automated Power Management System (APMS), Battle Damage Control System (BDCS), and multiple NBC filtration systems (for each citadel) as the Total Atmospheric Control System (TACS) was not available for import, up to three different weapons command-and-control stations, and a Computer-Aided Action Information Organisation (CAIO) from where the vessel’s CO can exercise operational command-and-control functions. But mind you, the CAIO is not the same as the centralised combat management system (CMS). On the Project 17 FFG and the Project 1135.6 FFGs the number of citadels has been brought down to just one, which now houses the centralised CMS, IPMS, IMCS, APMS, BDCS and the TACS’ controls. This same configuration will also be on board the Project 15A-class DDGs. All this will result in warships of reduced length and displacement, but the beamwidth and deck-levels will increase as the air-defence missiles and multi-role cruise missiles will be in universal vertical launch cells in far greater numbers than what was possible in the past.

Anonymous said...

prasun sengupta, kindly inform on China's expertise in Modular Shipbuilding

sachin_sathe said...


what is the navy looking for exactly the LPD's or LHD's both seem to be participating in the tender?

i think there was some news about in-house developement of a tank engine is that a DRDO programme?

Also, regarding the DDG' and FFG's contracts if first 2 units are to be built at the OEM's facility then is it possible to have these ships ready for induction by 2015 (only the first 2)? and would it have been easier and quicker approch for scorpene project as well?

Abhinaba said...

Prasunda,according to Sujan Dutta's report in 'THE TELEGRAPH' the Rs 10,000-crore missile venture with INDIA & ISRAEL will include 10 command & control centers,18 target acquisition radars,18 guidance radars,54 launchers & 432 missiles. From this venture Indian Army will take 9 squadrons of MR-SAMS.The report also indicates AKASH SAM is good for IAF.Now please inform 1>when & where 1st live test of this MR-SAM will be held? 2>What is the time-frame of this SAM project? 3>Is there any scope for Rohini to play a role in this SAM system? 4>How many targets can be acquired by EL/M-2084 MMR AESA target acquisition radar? 5>How many targets can be tracked & what is the range of EL/M-2082 AESA surveillance radar?

saptarshi dasgupta said...

PRASUNDA, i have certain questions regarding PROJECT 15B DDGs government has cleared 4 such ships but you are mentioning 7. are u taking 3 kolkata 15A with 15B to be seven or you are saying 7 project 15B more will be built . charte banabe na saat ta. ektu bole dau.Regarding project 17a FFG ,i think germany is proposing the MEKO D500 concept not the F125 which is inferior to meko d500 .please clear this confusion

Anonymous said...

prasun please answer my question my on the P-15B.

what would be your guess for the size, displacement tonnage, weapons and engine fit etc ?
reports also mention land attack capability, does this mean the nirbhay ?

Anonymous said...

The Super Hornets sold to Australia come with 10 years of paid for maintenance
aussies bought superhornet for $ 4.6 billion US dollars or 6 billion australian dollars

out of that 24 f18e/f cost $ 2.4 billion australian dollar and $ 3.6 billion australian dollars r for training and maintaince of 24 f18e/f for 10 years

so superhonet needs maintaince and that too at hefty price

but boeing claims that superhornet needs no maintaince before 6000 hrs is totally toatally wrong

and 6000hrs is the total life of superhornet

and there is no air force which flies their aircraft for 6000 hrs in just 10 years

so claiming that an aircraft needs no maintaince for entire duration of its life that is 6000hrs is laughable

is shornet needs no maintaince before 6000hrs then why australia paid hell amount of money to US for maintaince if their shornets r brand new,if above claim by boeing true then in this case shornets needs no maintaince for next 10 years so y did australia paid so much money for just maintaince

surpricisingly no other contender making such claims as boeing is doing

Anonymous said...

how advanced is our AESA devpt. efforts? when will we have our AESA MMR on Tejas.

why is there no news on Nag ATGM induction. Has the army accepted it.

Kaushik said...

Recently the Army issued RFPs for 22 attack helicopters for supporting the Armoured Regiments. Now if this is so then where does the LCH fit in? Isn't it bad to have two different attack helicopters performing the same role.

Recently there was a lot of fuss about a new combat kit for the infantry consisting of tactical hand held computers, helmet mounted NVDs, a new generation bullpup assault rifle, modern body armour etc. what happened to that project? has field trials commenced. the last i heard, the TATAs have submitted a proposal to the army.

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Abhinaba Da: The Telegraph story presupposes that the IAF's ground-based MR-SAM/LR-SAM deployment pattern will be the same as that of the Akash E-SHORADS. It has therefore reached the conclusion that the numbers will now be the same as that for the 15 Akash E-SHORADS squadrons that were part of the original envisaged acquisition for 18 Akash E-SHORADS sqns which has since been reduced to only 3 squadrons. The Akash, unless its range can be increased to the desired 50km range, will be ditched in favour of the MR-SAM. The Rohini radar will have nothing to do with the MR-SAM as the EL/M-2082 radar will be used for early warning. Each such radar in turn will provide early warning for up to three IAF MR-SAM Batteries (or one Battalion). As for the performance parameters of these radars as well as the EL/M-2084 MMR, kindly proceed to the IAI website's ELTA Systems section where you will find all the relevant data. The initial firing trials of the MR-SAM and LR-SAM will be conducted in the Negev Desert in Israel since there is a fully instrumented test-fiting range there, because in India, a similar overland range is only now coming up at Surya Lanka off Sriharikota.

To Sachin_Sathe: The Navy is looking for a hybrid design called multi-role support vessel (MRSV) which is similar in design to the ARMARIS-built Mistral, Hanjin's Dokdo and the GNG's MHD-150.
Regarding the new 1,500hp MBT engine being developed, yes, that is the case and the CVRDE is spearheading the effort in which several private companies are also involved. However, there's no effort as yet to develop a corresponding gearbox/transmission system and until this is done the complete powerpack for the Arjun Mk2 MBT will not be available.
Regarding Project 17A FFG, of course if the first two are built abroad then they could be delivered by 2013, PROVIDED the on-board systems (weapons and sensors, etc) are all pre-selected within a defined timeframe. If Navy HQ keeps on dragging its feet over systems selection like it has traditionally done then no matter where the warships are built, they will still arrive way behind schedule.

To Saptarshi Dasgupta Da: It is 3 P-15A Kolkata-class DDGs + 4 additional P-15A DDGs that were recently sanctioned, and in future a total of seven P-15B-class DDGs of an imported design will be ordered. The Cabinet Committee on National Security (CCNS) has not yet taken any decision on the P-15B acquisition schedule, and will do so only AFTER the seven-unit Project 17A FFG acquisition schedule is given the go-ahead (which is behind schedule by three years!!!). The additional 4 Project 15A Kolkata-class DDGs were sanctioned by the CCNS once it became clear that the Project 16B-class DDG procurement project will be delayed by at least five years (!!!).

To Anon@5:42AM: I already did. My last post above was in direct response to your query.

To Anon@5:53AM: The figures you're quoting are correct, but your inferences are totally wrong. FYI Each of the RAAF Super Hornets will log in 750 hours every year, thereby accounting for 250 hours logged in by each of the 3 aircrew sets per aircraft. That brings the total no of hours logged in over a 10-year period to 7,500 hours. The maintenance required for the Super Hornet during its first 6,000 flight hours is of the squadron-level and intermediate-level. After it attains the 6,000-hour mark, the entire aircraft and its engine will be re-lifed and will be good to go for another 5,000 hours. This is what total life-cycle MRO estimates are all about and I have with me the Boeing IDS-prepared technical presentation on such life-cycle cost calculation parameters and methodologies. And mind you, the Super Hornet training package for the RAAF also includes flight simulators, part-task trainers and CBTs, all of which are not that cheap to acquire.

To Anon@6:08AM: ALL AESA-related activities in India are based 100% on India-Israel cooperation. Whether it is BEL or Astra Microwave or any other military-industrial entity in India, they ALL have technology transfer and technolopgy co-development tie-ups with Israel Aerospace Industries' ELTA Systems Division.
As for the Nag ATGM, BDL has yet to receive any bulk orders from the MoD. The same is the cade with the NAMICA launcher vehicle. I don't know what's causing this delay.

To Kaushik: As the name suggests, the Light Combat Helicopter (LCH) will be employed for detecting and destroying UAVs, with its secondary role being target acquisition, battlefield observation and pathfinding for the much heavier attack helicopters. Therefore, there's no conflict of roles between the LCH and attack helicopters. The LCH could also be used for protecting heliborne air-assault formations (for vertical envelopment) that will utilise the armed Dhruv ALHs and Mi-17V-5s and therefore it is highly surprising why the Indian Army has not yet evinced any interest in the LCH.

Anonymous said...

hey prasun what was the actual price of license building 140 su30mki

i want to know to cost of the deal

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To saptarshi dasgupta Da: Out of the three available designs--F-125, MEKO 500D and MEKO 600, Navy HQ prefers the F-125 for the simple reason that it wants a design that has already been accepted by another navy. The MEKO 600 will, however, be an excellent design for the Project 15B DDG project if the hull can be stretched or broadened to accommodate an increased complement of multi-role cuise missiles like BrahMos and air defence missiles like the Barak-NG MR-SAM/LR-SAM combination. Having said that, I find it increasingly frustrating that the Indian Navy's DND continues to be bogged down by an attitude of conversatism and design orthodoxy. For instance, the Project 28 ASW corvette's design should have been something like those of the MEKO CSL or Visby, but that has not been the case and by the time the Project 28 corvettes enter service the hull design will be a decade old instead of being futuristic. Another example is the total rejection of the high-speed surface effect ship concept, which if embraced earlier this decade, would have by now given the Indian Coast Guard and Marine Police agencies credible rapid-response transportation platforms for both routine coastal patrol and special operations mounted as a consequence of actionable intelligence inputs. It is this kind of rejectionist attitude of the DND and Navy HQ that greatly disturbs me.

To Anon@5:53AM: Another point I forgot to highlight earlier is that all the Su-30MKI-related contract values that has been reported openly concern only the procurement of the aircraft. The costs of setting up the related MRO facilities (base repair depots and various other workshops) and acquisition of simulators for both aircrew and ground crew were not part of the aircraft procurement contracts, but were instead signed as 17 follow-on supplementary contracts, the details of which have not yet been studied or reported by mainstream Indian media entities. Once you include all these figures to work out a grand/consolidated contract value, only then can anyone conduct an objective comparison of procurement costs of the Super Hornet and Su-30MKI.

To Kaushik: All F-INSAS-related programmes are still in the RFI stage, including that of the TATA Group. One has yet to reach the RFQ stage.

Anonymous said...

That brings the total no of hours logged in over a 10-year period to 7,500 hours
how u get this figure

6000hrs is total life of superhornet along with its engines

and there is no air force which flies their aircraft 7500hrs in just 10 years

australia retiring thier f18 older hornets just after 30 years of sevice while india will keep their mig29 until 2030

and australians r not fool that they will finish entire life hours of shornet in just 10 years

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Anon@11:09AM: When talking about such costs (for 140 + 40 Su-30MKIs) one must include the cost of land acquisition for setting up new assembly lines, buying industrual tooling, jigs etc for the assembly lines, human resource training to undertake such skilled activities and getting them type-rated by the concerned OEMs, the cost of land acquisition for setting up the various MRO laboratories for servicing instrumentation/avionics/accessories, human resource training to undertake such skilled MRO activities and getting them type-rated by the concerned OEMs, and the establishment of indigenous QC and certification agencies for monitoring all of the above-mentioned activities. One must also include the cost of creating industrial start-ups like THALES-SAMTEL Avionics. To all this one must add the costs of setting up instrumented ranges for indigenous weapons qualification (like for the Litening LDP, BrahMos MRCM, Popeye Lite), and similar ranges for testing the aircraft's hybrid EW suite. All in all, the final figure will be in the region of US$500 million.

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Anon@11:21AM: Whether it is with Russia-origin or China-origin or India-origin or Western-origin combat aircraft, the TTSL or total technical service life does not mean that upon attaining this figure the aircraft will have to be decommissioned. If that were the case then all the Bell 47G helicopters and C-47 Dakotas would long have been retired from service. But that is clearly not the case and many of them of 1940s vintage are still flying around. How? Why? Simply because they have been RELIFED. In the case of the Super Hornet, once it reaches the 6,000-hour TTSL it is subjected to an airframe/engine relifing programme and after this the aircraft has a new life and can fly for another 5,000 hours. The same is the case for the MiG-29 or Su-30MKI. But these two Russia-origin aircraft were designed in a way so as to guarantee an assured 100 flight-hours being logged in, in line with Soviet/Russian Air Force practice. But the IAF does not follow this pattern and consequently, each IAF Su-30MKI delivered so far is subjected to at least 300 hours of flying, based on 25 hours of flight-time being logged in by a single aircrew set per month to maintain combat proficiency (the flight hours are higher than Western air forces since the IAF has yet to acquire the Su-30MKI flight simulators). Once the tactical mission simulators are commissioned, up to 40 per cent of the current flight-time per aircrew per annum will be logged not by actual flight, but by the no of hours 'flown' on the simulator.

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Anon@11:21AM: It is for this reason (TTSL extension/relifing)that both in India and Pakistan there are licenced-manufacturing lines for the Soviet/Russia (HAL's facilities in Nashik and Koraput)and China-origin combat aircraft (in Kamra). After the aircraft has attained the specified TTSL, it is subjected to a rebuild and its TTSL is extended. If you read the newsreports on the decommissioning of the IAF's MiG-25R and MiG-23BN, you will see there exactly how many times those aircraft were relifed. The same is the case with the IAF's helicopters of Russian and French origin. That is the ONLY reason why India has always set up production lines for any combat aircraft and helicopter that has been procured in large numbers--for extending the TTSLs using local means and resources.

Anonymous said...

northrup grumman site says this

The Block 60 F-16 represents an evolutionary step ahead of the current F-16 Block 50 aircraft.
The AN/APG-80 is designed with an electronically
scanned array radar with both
smaller target and electronic counter-counter
measures capabilities.

. The F16 Block 60's modular mission computer has a processing throughput of 12.5
million instructions per second and provides sensor and weapons integration.

Predicted System MTBF of 390 hours for AN/APG-80.

The APG-77's active aperture antenna offers attractive benefits. The system exhibits a very low radar
cross section, supporting the F-22's stealthy design. Reliability of the all-solid-state system is
expected to be substantially better than the already highly reliable F-16 radar, with MTBF predicted
at more than 450 hours.
Technical Experiences and Features:
• Weapons System Integration – Integrated an LPI, AESA radar into a tactical avionics and
weapons suite.
• Supportability – designed for two-level maintenance and high reliability (MTBF over 450 hours).

Harpreet said...

Can you point to the source indicating plans for 7 P15B destroyers.
In the FORCE November 2008 issue the Controller of Warship Production and Acquisition has stated "a total of 7 destroyers, 13 frigates..." as the major warship construction that would have been accomplished by 2022. That would indicate (3 P15A + 4 P15B} destroyers and {3 P17 + 3 Krivaks + 7 P17A} frigates.
Or will the P15B come after 2022 ie after P17a, are we going to need foreign designs even after P17a?

saptarshi dasgupta said...

THANKS FOR CLARIFYING THE F-125 AND MEKO THING,regarding project 28 corvettes,i have heard that navy will go for 8 more project 28a corvettes,,will that be indigenously designed like project 28 or will be procured through a tender like project 17A.AND ANY NEWS ON THE NAVY'S REQUIREMENT FOR 6 AEW aircrafts. i heard israeli G55O EITAM and E-2D HAWKEYE were in fray. navy can even look into boeing 737 mesa aew&c for this requirement since b737 is a common platform like THE P-8I POSEIDONS..BUT B737 AEW costS MORE compared to g550 and e-2d.please throw some light into this requirement,since navy's job is big as it has to cover a 8000km costline and an aew system is the right dose naval HQ REQUIRES

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Harpreet: There are some four interviews of senior Indian navy officials in the December 2008 issue of FORCE in which the queries you raise are clearly identified. In them, when talking of future warship construction projects the seven Project 15B DDGs and seven Project 17A FFGs are clealy identified. The Improved Krivaks are of imported origin and do not form part of the domestic warship construction package. That still leaves a shortfall of six yet-to-be-built FFGs and this void is likely to be filled by ordering an additional 3 Project 1135.6 FFGs to add to the six, plus ordering an additional three more Project 17 FFGs as a Batch 2 package. The combination of weapons/on-board sensors for these three Project 17 Batch 2 FFGs are now being finalised. But they will have BrahMos on board and not the Club-M.

To Saptarshi Dasgupta: The Navy is evaluating only 2 platforms: the G-550 CAEWCS and E-2D Hawkeye 2000. The B.737NG-based AEW & C platform is not in contention. In total the Navy requires 12 ASW corvettes and these will all be based on the Project 28 hull and will be procured under Batch 2 and Batch 3 packages.

Black Hawk said...

Regarding the ATV project do you have any info on exact date of commission. I read somewhere that the navy intends to build a dedicated enclosed berthing facility for nuclear submarines near vizag. is the facility complete. when are we getting the Nerpas from Russia.
Also the current ATV is designed for the 700 km Sagarika. When we have the 8500 km missile, we will be needing a larger sub for them like the Ohio class. So then the ATV with Sagarika becomes obsolete. Then is it possible to convert the ATVs to hunter killer subs. The ATV and LA class have nearly the same displacement.

Anonymous said...

Prasun, just curious do you think the picture below is a Mig 35 or Mig 29OVT

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Black Hawk: The ATV is purely a technology demonstration project. As such, it will never become an operational vessel and therefore will never be commissioned into any kind of service by anyone. Even externally, it won't in any way resemble an operational submarine, contrary to popular speculation in mainstream Indian newsmedia. A full-scale operational India-built SSBN is at least a decade away and that is also the reason the DRDO is no great hurry to develop the 8,500km-range SLBM and is instead taking the well thought-out crawl, walk and run approach under which the land-mobile 3,500km-range and 6,000km-range variants of the Agni-3 are being developed first, and will be followed by the 8,500km-range SLBM variant. Sagarika is the NOT the name for any SLBM, but the name of the DRDO's Project Office responsible for developing the SLBM, just as 'Akangsha' is the name of the ATV Project Office.
Regarding the Navy's new base 50km south of Vizag for nuclear submarines, it is coming up on schedule as the existing berthing and dry-docking facilities are deemed unsuitable and dangerous in the midst of the existing urbanised and industrially dense facilities at Vizag. In the event of any unforeseen nuclear propulsion-related accident taking place at Vizag the fallouts will be fatal for the densly populated areas around the existing facilities. Hence the need for a new, dedicated and isolated facility for nuclear-powered submarines, be it the ATV or Akula-2/Nerpa.

To Anon@9:20AM: That photo is of the MiG-29M2 as the caption very clearly says. The airframe of the MiG-35 will bear a close resemblance to that of the MiG-29Ks of the Indian Navy with far less rivetting and significant composites content in the fuselage skin. The definitive MiG-35 airframe is still under construction, and as NOT YET been rolled out.

Kaushik said...

Could you shed some light on the Shaurya missile. It appears to be a cross between a ballistic missile and a cruise missile. What are the roles in which the three services plan to use it. It travels too fast and impacts its target by falling back to the earth from a great height. So it can't be used like a cruise missile. If it is strictly against fixed targets like airfields then wouldn't the Agni-1 suffice. Moreover it travels horizontally like a cruise missile only at a great height and so does not evade radar which means it has the same vulnerability as ballistic missiles. The Shaurya's role is not clearly defined and it looks like the DRDO wanted a missile that can be used in a tactical role like a cruise missile and so as a stop gap measure developed the Shaurya. In my opinion the Shaurya is an ill-advised effort and I don't think the services will give much attention to it. Your take on this?

Nava said...


Could you list the major Indo-Israeli collaborations and procurements in the EW field?

(Sorry if this is too laborious, its just that living in Israel, even to one who has friends who work in the defense establishment, this field is all but invisible, and therefore a "back-channel" would be much appreciated)

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Nava: Why the 'invisibility'? 99% of the stuff you've asked for is already available as open-source material. The EL/L-8222 EW jamming pods for the IAF and Indian Navy, and ELBIT Systems-supplied naval EW suites for the Project 16/Project 16A and Project 17 FFGs have all been highlighted by me in my earlier blog uploads. The IAF-operated EMB-140 Legacy VIP transportation aircraft too have ELTA-supplied defensive aids suites on-board. ELTA has also supplied the ELINT/SIGINT sensors for those G-330 jets operated by the Research & Analysis Wing's Aviation Research Centre. In addition, most of the ground-based (static and mobile) ELINT/SIGINT hardware used by RAW and National Technical Research Organisation (NTRO) are from ELTA.

Anonymous said...

prasun there are israeli electronic systems on the navy's dorniers Do-228s.

any details from you?

Prasun K Sengupta said...

it is the same as that selected for the P-8I and Tu-142M, i.e. ELTA-built wingtip-mounted ESM suite, belly-mounted EL/M-2022(V3) search radar and MSOP FLIR turret.

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Kaushik: The Shourya is a ballistic missile and does not follow the flight trajectory of the cruise missile. However, the Shourya's re-entry section is manoeuvrable and it is this part of the Shourya missile that can be programmed to follow a non-ballistic flight path if required. In many ways, the Shourya is in many ways like the Chinese DF-25's latest variant that has been developed to attack aircraft carrier-led naval battle groups. If the Shourya is equipped with the same kind of on-board target acquisition-cum-terminal guidance sensors then this missile can be very potent at the SUB-STRATEGIC LEVEL, meaning it can be employed to lethal effect when armed with conventional warheads to attack high-value static and strategic installations like munitions factories, POL logistics concentrations, and static command-and-control centres. The Agni-1 is in a different category altogether as it carries a nuclear warhead and will be employed at the STRATEGIC-LEVEL. What India requires are conventional warhead-armed precision-guided ballistic missiles that can be employed for both land attack and maritime strike, and which do not have to be deployed very close to the border, as is the case with BrahMos and Prithvi SS-150/SS-250. Therefore, a tactical ballistic missile like the Shourya, when carried on board 7,000-tonne guided-missile destroyers (about 24 per vessel) can deliver pulverising deep strikes while staying far away from the enemy's coastline. This and only this will enable the Navy to play a decisive and equitable role when it comes to land attack and participation of the Navy in future AirLand battles. Right now the Indian Navy is incapable of doing this and even in future with two aircraft carriers it will not be able to mount expeditionary air campaigns on its own against Pakistan's coastline, for instance, without the support of the IAF. This is what happened in 1971, this was the wargaming scenario for EX Brass Tacks in 1986, and this remains the case till today.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Sengupta, what's your assessment on the size and composition of the Indian nuclear deterrent ?
Bharat Karnad's latest work suggests moves - slow but sure - to a deterrent of about 200 warheads based around Agni-3 and successors for land use and later SLBMs with warhead of 100 kilotons in yield either fusion(not sufficiently tested) or boosted-fission (reasonably satisfactory).

Anonymous said...

what if russia starts selling pakis mig35,su30,brahmos,amur class subs,smerch MBRL,t90,ka50,ka52,s300pmu,these systems r deadly and cheaper than western systems

and russia also has right to diversify their arms sales if india does't buy their products

Anonymous said...

kaushik far from being an ill-advised project shaurya is a missile of the future. it is designed from ground up to defeat entry to mid-level ABM systems !

that might be a necessary requirement in the not so far future.

Anonymous said...

think russia did not allow china to sell rd33 for jf17,those 8 jf17 pakis have the engines of those 8 aircraft were from intial batch from china and before china starts supplying more rd33 to pakis before that india insisted over the sale of rd33 to pakistan and since than russia has taken its hands off the rd33 engine sales to pakis

so u guys count that how many jf17 has been supplied since than

Kaushik said...

Read the above article. The article says the missile travels horizontally at 50 km alt. which is very much within the atmosphere. So the missile does not follow a ballistic trajectory even during the coasting phase. If Shourya makes a re-entry from outside the atmosphere, its outer skin temperature will shoot up to 2500 degrees. At such temperature only reinforced carbon-carbon composites can maintain structural integrity and protect the payload. Clearly the Shourya's nose cone is not made up of carbon composites. The Chromium based coating on the missile's nose creates an envelope of superheated gases around the missile and helps reduce drag forces. This is clearly not needed for a missile of Shourya's dimensions for a ballistic trajectory because its small diameter produces only a manageable drag. Such a coating is needed only for those missiles that travel within the atmosphere or for missiles of high diameter like ICBMs. Therefore the Shourya does not make a re-entry from great heights. At least not greater than 50-60 km. A missile reaching that height, if it follows a ballistic trajectory, can't reach a point 700 km away. So for a large part of its flight, the Shaurya must travel horizontally like a cruise missile. It is during this phase that the missile is very vulnerable to interceptors like our own PAD. It does not evade radar even if it is of small size because its high speed produces a varying density gaseous envelope around it which will be detected even by the kind of radars used for meteorology. That is why i said the Shourya is ill-advised because it is neither a ballistic missile nor a cruise missile but has the vulnerability of both.

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Anonymous said...

kaushik, trajectory profile of shaurya type missile is called "depressed ballistic trajectory".

it will not be shot down for the simple reason that it will not be detected early. if you have read the headline of the article by TS Subramanium you posted, you will understand.

in case you don't, here's something :

add to it its superior maneuverablity at the terminal stages you'll get what I'm saying.
cheers !

Prasun K Sengupta said...

Anon@9:12PM: You really have a strange way of reasoning. No one's stopping Russia, certainly not India, from selling any kind of weaponry to anybody. Russia can sell whatever it wants to anyone, including Pakistan. But this will not create any problems for India, but will only create more problems for Russia as Pakistan will make available all Russia-supplied weapons to China for inspection and cloning. If Russia and you can live with that, then I too have no problems with this.

Anonymous said...

Is Russia really afraid of China? What for? They have settled all their border disputes. Russia is ready to sell its most advanced fighters to China, the S-300 system and also assisted China for its SSBN development. When Russia itself is arming China to the teeth I can't understand why Russia should do this if it sees China as a threat.

Anonymous said...

To Anon@10:15AM: Settling of longstanding boundary disputes does not automatically translate into longlasting harmonious and peaceful co-existence. The greatest Russian nightmare in its Far Eastern region is the large-scale Chinese migration that may within the next 20 years alter the demographic composition there. That's why Russia has been extremely careful to regulate its weapons exports to China, and whatever's been sold to China to date hardly constitutes state-of-the-art systems as almost all of them were developed in the 1980s and are at best relics of the Cold War era. What makes things even more interesting is that for the past 3.5 years there's been no significant Sino-Russian weapons deal being inked. At the same time, even after the boundary disputes being amicably resolved, opinion polls conducted by Chinese state-owned national newsmedia have shown that the average Chinese intelligensia continues to regard Russia as its No1 potential threat, followed by the US, then India and then Japan.

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Anon@4:03PM: As I' not an academician like Bharat Karnad, I prefer to base my conclusions on hard facts that I know of, rather than Cold War era-based speculation. Therefore, all I can say is that between 1988 and May 1998 there was enough fissile material (weapons-grade plutonium) produced for making only 10 N-weapon cores. Of these, five were tested in May 1998 and one untested core was retrieved. Therefore, I'm sure you will now be able to do the math and calculate how much time is takes to manufacture 10 N-weapon cores. In my estimation, only 12 such cores are kept at permanent readiness for being mated with the same number of ballistic missile-mounted warheads. The maximum number of such officially sanctioned warheads is only 36 simply because unlike the US and Russia, India's strategic targetting priorities are limited in scope and include no more than five targets within any targetted country. That's what minimum credible deterrence is all about, and is therefore not to be equated with the mutually assured destruction doctrine. Therefore, God alone knows why folks tend to make claims of India possessing warheads by the 100s. Even as far as Pakistan is concerned the no of n-warheads it has is no more than 12, as Islamabad rightly estimates that this is more than enough to ensure credible n-deterrence.

Anonymous said...

LPI of aesa depend on mumber of T/R modules in aesa radar because each t/r module has different operating frequency and more r t/r modules harder is to intercept frequency or better is LPI

SO apg77,63(v3) have more t/r modules than apg79,80 so better is their LPI

apg77,63(v3) have more aesa t/r modules about 1500 t/r modules , so at a time around 1000 t/r modules r active and rest r or stand by and if some of those 1000 t/r modules get heated they r automatically switched off and remaing t/r modules which were on stand by comes in action

so in this way 1000 times frequency is being changed at any period of time and some of the 1000 t/r modules r used for air to air and some t/r modules r being used for ground mapping
and this simultaneous air to air and air to ground functuions r possible only because each t/r module has different frequency so more powerful back end processors r needed for this

but this can't be done with pulse doppler or pesa radars cuz there is only one receiver/transmitter in these radars so only single frequency which either can be used for air to air or air to ground but not simultaneously for both tasks

people might think that LPI is only provided in american aesa radars is wrong .
LPI is advantage of all aesa radars whether they r euro,american ,russian

Anonymous said...

Saab has tied up with SELEX Galileo to co-develop an Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) Radar for the Gripen Next Generation (NG) program, a MMRCA contender.

SELEX Galileo is owned by Italy's Finmeccanica Group. It is developing the VIXEN 500E, a small AESA radar for use on small lightweight fighter aircraft. The radar currently does not have any customers. It has approximately 500 T/R modules. There is also a variant with 750 T/R modules under development. The range of the Vixen 500E is given as 35 nautical miles (65 km).
zhuk ae has range of 130km against 3^square which is 40% more than zhuk me radar and this radar is already has better range than apg80 and aesa for gripen mentioned above

moreover diameter of zhuk ae is 580mm but it will be moved further back so that its diameter con be increased to 700mm and that will increase detection range to 170-180 against 3^square and this will be competitive against rbe2aesa and apg79

moreover IAF not going to induct any aircraft before 2014 so there will be enough time for euro and russians to catch up americans

Anonymous said...

to prasun

much vaunted western aesa radars r
already outclassed by irbis e

russians working on follow on upgrade of irbis e radar will be aesa for PAK FA and that radar will be one heck of radar

and will have 50% more range than irbis e radar that is 600 km against 3^square

Anonymous said...

it seems nowdays that russia is getting protective about its military hardware technology secrets

Anonymous said...

i thought the repeat order for the Shivalik class was Project 17A

Anonymous said...

i think india won't go for scorpenes with AIP for second line of subs anymore which cost
$ 3.5 billion for 6 subs

neither india go for U214 because india could choose u214 when scorpenes were bought and there is no difference between u209/1500 and u214 except AIP,if AIP and new sensors r is added to u209 in indian navy then it becomes u214,

and indian navy upgrading its u209 with new sensors.there is much more similarity between u209 and u214 so navy won't go for this u214 sub

last option is AMUR sub,which offeres brahmos ,klub land and anti ship missile and AIP installation and also offeres froeign electronics to incorporate.

so if india buy amur subs then it will cost no more than 2 billion dollars and india will save straight 1.5 billion dollars

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Anon@12:11AM: Repeat orders for an existing warship design are broken down into batches. Thus, there will be batch 1 and batch 2, for instance. In the case of Project 17A FFG the hull design and displacement will be totally different from the Project 17 FFG. That's why it is for the very reasons outlined above that the follow-on four DDGs approved by the Defence Acquisitions Council will not be Project 15B DDGs, but Project 15A Batch 2 DDGs. It's a pity the BROADSWORD article did not pay attention to this critical fact and therefore got confused between Project 15A and Project 15B. Also, the cost of building the follow-on four Batch-2 Project 15A DDGs will be more than the cost of building the first three Batch-1 Project 15A DDGs even if the hull design and weapons fit are the same, just like the cost of the three follow-on Project 1135.6 FFGs (now being built in Kaliningrad) is more than the cost of the first three Project 1135.6 Talwar-class FFGs.

To Anon@8:16AM: Neither the Scorpene nor the Amur 1650 are being offered for the so-called second line of SSKs. ARMARIS is offering the SMX-23 and the Fincantieri/Rosoboronexport consortium are jointly offering the S-800 SSK. Furthermore, the Indian Navy does not prefer the addition of VL cells for launching land attack cruise missiles from submarines. Rather, it wants such missiles to be launched from existing torpedo tubes, just as is the case with the upgraded Type 877EKM SSKs.

Anonymous said...

Prasun, LCH was supposed to be tested in March. What happened sir??

sachin_sathe said...


won't the tube launched cm's cut into the max no of torpedos a small subs (ssk's) can carry? also ,will the actual SSGN(whenever it comes) will have the same metod or will it use VLS?

can u make a comparisons of the LHD's the IN intends to purchase?

wht do u think is the technical reason behind canselation of attack helicopter procurement?

regarding the project 15B what is the displacement range do u think the navy is looking at?

what is the current status of the Jonga replacement program? I think mahindra's AXE and TATA's LSV were part of it along withe som 2-3 others.

saptarshi dasgupta said...

PRASUNDA, this is regarding PROJECT 15B ddgs. in many newspapers it is being said that PROJECT 15B is a follow on to 15A,,,.that means the next line of 7 destroyers that will be procured from abroad or built upon foreign designs ,,will not be called 15B rather i think project 15C sounds logical..this is because all the reports FROM PRESS TRUST OF INDIA, BUSINESS STANDARD OR some other newspapers suggest that the follow on to project 15A will be project 15B ,,'for which there will be no competitive bidding and will be based on 15A hull with minor improvements in sensors and weapons'.so this says that 7 new destroyers will be of foreign design and will not be called project 15B.
ONE MORE THING ,IF WE GO FOOR smx-23[which i think will happen],,then can BRAHMOS BE FIRED FROM IT?

Anonymous said...

Mr. Sengupta, you've answered a lot of questions on the LRSAM and MRSAM - is India really obtaining both or only the latter. I ask because of this article:

It would seem that some selective arguments are being used by those opposed to the deal.

Shashi said...

Why does my comments does not show up? does it take more than a day?

Shashi said...

Hi Prasun,

It’s been a pleasure reading your blog for quite some time. Extremely informative, thank you, Sir.

Recently I read the news that RFP for 22 attach helicopters was cancelled because all 3 bidders could not meet the qualitative requirements. Other vendors had walked out of the deal much earlier for some other reasons

Now, the current RPF took years & years before MoD & other departments involved could make up their mind on what they want. In the process don’t they know what’s available in the market & what’s not? Did the requirement was something like we need helicopters which have total stealth and also totally invisible to naked eyes? (I know, I am exaggerating..)

If the requirement is futuristic, then why don’t call for a collaborative development? Instead of off the shelf purchase? Now this will take another 2~3 years for new RFP, then negotiations, field test, then some bribery scandal… So if eventually the deal makes through, we can hope to see these 22 helicopters in 10 to 15 years?

Prasun, Can you please give some insight?

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Anon@7:20PM: The weight-reduction process of the LCH's first flying prototype has yet to be completed and therefore this prototype is now lilely to roll out by next January.

To Sachin_Sathe: Not really, as the SMX-23 and S-800 SSKs being offered will have a greater displacement than the Scorpene SSK.
The SSGN will have VLS tubes. As for LHSs, the main contenders are from Armaris of France, Hanjin of South Korea and Thyssenkrupp of Germany. Hanjin has a clear edge because it can guarantee delivery of two such LPHs within 24 months! The attack helicopter reqmt is not cancelled but is being retendered to accommodate the two US offers from Boeing and Bell helicopter Textron. For the Project 15B DDG the displacement will not exceed 7,000 tonnes as it will accommodate several new technologies (especially in automation) that were not available for the first three Project 15DDGs. Am not aware of the latest developments on the Indian Army's LSV project.

To saptarshi dasgupta da: Actually, as the BROADSWORD article itself states, the Navy has yet to give a class designation for the four DDGs to be acquired as follow-ons to the first three Project 15A Kolkata-class DDGs. That being the case, calling these four DDGs as Project 15B or Project 15C will be erroneous. But based on the RFIs that were issued two years ago to foreign shipbuilders for the seven new DDGs, this project was clearly spelt out as Project 15B. I'm therefore basing the warship model designations on these officially released documents, instead of relying on reportage from the PRESS TRUST OF INDIA, BUSINESS STANDARD or some other newspapers. Now, regarding the six new SSKs to be acquired, one has to ask this: what will be the primary roles of these SSKs and consequently, will the submarine-launched BrahMos be an operational necessity? The answer to all this is simple: the SSKs will primarily be used for sea denial operations via undersea warfare, and for acting as escorts for carrier-based battle groups. Therefore, as these SSKs will not be used for anti-ship strike or land attack, the need for any kind of submarine-launched cruise missiles on board these to-be-acquired SSKs does not arise. It is not an issue of whether or not the BrahMos is good or bad, but of the mission requirements.

To Anon@4:06AM: If you've read my previous replies on this issue you would have by now realised that:
1) The MR-SAM will be acquired by all three Indian armed services.
2) The LR-SAM will be acquired by the IAF, and could also be acquired by the Indian Navy for its seven Project 15B DDGs.

Prasun K Sengupta said...

It looks like the so-called DNA exposes on the MR-SAM/LR-SAM R & D contracts are being linked to the former CAS of the IAF, ACM (ret'd) S P Tyagi, and his then Vice Chief of IAF, AVM Ajit Bhavnani, who is now the Managing Director of TATA NOVA, the joint venture between TATA & IAI. But these DNA exposes are barking up the wrong tree for sure.

Anonymous said...

prasun reportedly IN wants its 2nd line of subs to fire brahmos and derivatives (which requires VLS), something the scorpene can't do.

your assertion of tube fired missiles only goes against this news.

what say ?
why wouldn't IN want its new subs to fire brahmos and co ?

Anonymous said...

there r missiles with longer range like aster30,s300 than LRSAM,MRSAM in market ,so i still don't c y india going with israel on this

Anonymous said...

aster30 on type45 destroyer has range of 120km and aster 15 has range of 30 km and works with SAMPSON aesa radar

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Shashi: Many thanks for the compliments. Regarding the attack helicopter reqmt, what exactly is there to evaluate? It is globally known that of all the contenders the Boeing AH-64D Longbow Apache is the most combat-proven platform and the IAF will go for it with closed eyes. Next comes the EADS/Eurocopter-built Tiger, in terms of being a mature design and the number of units ordered thus far. Following that comes the AgustaWestland A-129 Mangusta although this is not exactly a heavy attack helicopter. Lastly, the Mi-28NE that can be equipped with all kinds of new-generation weapons and related mission sensors/avionics of Israeli origin if the IAF desires it. On top of that, the Mi-28NE's engine/gearbox combination will be the same as that of the Mi-17V-5s that have been ordered by the IAF. Therefore, the shortlisting should include only two platforms: AH-64D Longbow Apache and Mi-28NE. It is that simple and the entire evaluation process right up to contract signature should not take more than nine months. It is doable, if the money is available, which isn't at the moment. It would have been if the non-lapsable defence modernisation fund unveilled by the NDA govt had still been in existence.

Anonymous said...

prasun reportedly IN wants its 2nd line of subs to fire brahmos and derivatives (which requires VLS), something the scorpene can't do.

your assertion of tube fired missiles only goes against this news.

what say ?
why wouldn't IN want its new subs to fire brahmos and co ?
india already has scorpenes and france has offered scorpenes with AIP no smx23,21

so only remaining sub is amur class subs and navy will b happy to go for these subs

and brahmos can only b fired in VL or inclined launch

but prasun think that it can b fired for torpedo tubes and thats totally wrong because the diameter of brahmos is mucvh bigger to fit in torpedo tubes

Anonymous said...

Therefore, the shortlisting should include only two platforms: AH-64D Longbow Apache and Mi-28NE
one can buy 2 mi28NE in a price of single apache so 2 mi28 is always bertter than having a single apache in same price3

more over prasun there r ka50,52 as well

but can u tell the price of apache,ka50-52,mi28

Anonymous said...

to prasun here is pic of MI28N

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Anon@10:49AM: The RFI for the follow-on six SSKs that I have seen makes no mention of BrahMos or for any other SSK-fired anti-ship or land-attack cruise missile. It's principal on-board armaments will therefore only comprise those guided-weapons that are required for waging undersea warfare (submarine warfare).

To Anon@10:50AM: The answer is very simple: the Israelis were prepared to go along with the JV concept and commit to maximum offsets over and beyond the required 30%. The others like MBDA and the Russians had off-the-shelf available systems that are available only for buying, there's nothing to to co-developed. Therefore, the benefits of going with the Israelis are obvious.

To Anon@10:58AM: For the past three years it has been a well-known fact that India does not want to procure more than six Scorpene SSKs. Therefore the six new SSKs to be acquired will not be Scorpenes, but an entirely different design. If the Navy wanted to buy an additional six Scorpenes then it would not have issued new RFIs and RFPs, but would have simply signed a supplementary contract with ARMARIS for the six additional Scorpene SSKs, just as was the case with the 40 extra Su-30MKIs ordered for the IAF. And for the nth time, the Amur 1650 is NOT being offered by anyone. The combined Italian/Russian offer is for the S-800 SSK, which is a radical improvement of the basic Amur 1650 SSK design.

Anonymous said...

TO PRASUN here r pic of glss cockpit of


and ka52

Anonymous said...

to prasun

longer range of SAM missiles over 120km r always better than 70km range SAM rather than losing entire ship

what kind of codevelopment ur talking about with israelis

no transfer of missile seekers,and guidance there is not even surity that v will get the aesa radar tech moreover all testing is done in israel

and by the way what will be the range of aesa radar israelis offering compared to SAMPSON aesa

Anonymous said...

most capable aesa radar being offered is typhoon radar with 1425 t/r elements.apg77,63(v3) have 1500 t/r modules

rbe2 aesa and apg79 have 1100 t/r modules

and same for zhuk ae will have 1068 t/r modules

so typhoon AMSAR will have more range than any other aesa being offered and is mot agile fighter

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Anon@11.13AM: The Ka-50/Ka-52 are not in contention as the RFP clearly specified a tandem-seat attack helicopter.

To Anon@11.18AM: What kind of joint R & D development I'm talking about? Read this at:

Also, there are things that only a 70km-range MR-SAM can do and there are things that only a 120km-range LR-SAM can do. And the roles/missions are not inter-changeable. That's why there's the Aster 15 and Aster 30, and there's the Patriot PAC-3 and THAAD, and there's the Buk-M2E, S-300PMU1, S-400 and V-2500. There's no such thing as a can-do-all SAM.

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Anon@11:44AM: Which factor determines which is the most capable AESA radar?

Anonymous said...

to prasun

ok rbe2 aesa and amsar aesa r of same tech and codeveloped by euro countries and match apg79 packing tech

for example apg77,63(v3) have around more aesa modules around 1500 compared to 1100 modules in apg79 so apg77,63-v3 have more detection range in both air to air of air to ground compared to apg79 due to their higher number of t/r modules

same thing applies for amsar radar it got more aesa modules hence better detection range along with its pirate IRST ANd HIGH AGILITY beats aesa radars apg79,rbe2 aesa and IRST of of f18,rafale

f18 has no irst

Prasun K Sengupta said...

Just having a greater number of T/R modules does not mean the range is longer. What determines the range is the transmit power and the efficiency of the transmitted pulse's exciter/receiver and the superiority of the programmable signals processor. And ultimately, the multi-mode capability of any AESA radar is determined by the superiority of the applications algorithmn and the on-board EW threat library--this being employed when operating in the non-cooperative target recognition mode. And FYI last month the pod-mounted IRST made its maiden flight on the Super Hornet.

Anonymous said...

yes the power per t/r module matters but yet again europeans r not inferior in this also and back end processing and software and typhoon has engough power for its aesa

typhoon has bigger nose cone as well than rafale and f18

Prasun K Sengupta said...

The diameter of the nosecone will not make any difference for AESA radars, as proven by the much smaller nosecones of the F/A-22 and F-35. In any case, once the thin-skin AESA arrays are installed throughout the airframe upgraded Su-30MKIs in future (giving 360-degree airspace surveillance capability) the nose-mounted radar antenna installation will become irrelevant.

Anonymous said...

To Anon@11.18AM: What kind of joint R & D development I'm talking about?
Read this at:
--------------------------------------------to prasun

there is comparision among AAP.MRSAM,AKAASH they compared anti aircraft missile with anti ballistic missile

missile designed to shoot targets at speed of over mach5
at altitude of 20km and thats y it is bigger and has more fuel is optimised for high speed and high altitude

same thing for missiles likes300pac3,s400 HaVE MORE
POwERFUL MISSILES with more fuel,bigger warhead to sustain high speed and that work much better at high altitude

but MRSAM is based on derby SAM so its sustain high speed on high altitude is questionable

prithvi air defence has shot missiles with speed of over mach 5 at 80km altitude
while s400,s300pmu2,pac3 can shot missiles at altitude of
only 40km and that y DRDO scientist claimed PAD,AAD better than pac3

chinese mounted s300 on thier ships can shoot missile at altitude of 88000 feet

while MRSAM is being designed as an anti aicraft missile not high speed intercepter or anti ballistc missile that too can shot targets only at 60000 feet

and akaash is anti aircraft missile also like MRSAM

Anonymous said...

MRSAM IS ALSO DESIGNED FOR cruise missile defence along with to function as anti aircraft missile

but certainly MRSAM can't b compared with AAD,PAD which r anti ballistic missiles requiring only
7G ,high spped at high alitude and thats y need heavier missiles and

don't need 80G of MRSAM because ballistic missiles doesn't at 80G

Anonymous said...

MRSAM is more like point defence system with range of 70km

Prasun K Sengupta said...

Dude, if MR-SAM is classified by you as a point defence system then where do the Tunguska, Igla-S and E-SHORADS like SR-SAM fit in? Sub-point?

Harpreet said...

Prasun, SMX-23 is an 800t sub and not bigger than Scorpene. What DCNS will offer will be known after RFP is issued. SSK are not employed as carrier escorts as they are too slow <20k. BrahMos can be a powerful sea denial weapon which will keep subs from harm's way so why should the IN shy away from it? As the IN is spreading its legs we need big ocean going SSK like BMT's Vidar-36. What is the point of having two subs in the same category? What advantage will S800 without BrahMos offer over Scorpene?
to Anon@11:18am
The focus is now on anti missile/pgm and not on anti aircraft SAMs.This is because ASM are always smaller and cheaper then SAM of comparable range(blame it on gravity). You can put a massive S300 on the deck, the enemy will just come back with a 300km AShM. LRSAM's range of ~70Km is enough to intercept AShM as they emerge above the horizon. I dont think Israel will share seeker tech with us, nobody would. But it is this advanced piece of tech which makes MRSAM so compact yet so potent. Its two stage configuration and compact seeker is what makes this 275kg missile comparable to 1200kg AAD (PAC 3 is 350kg).Also its agility has been reported at 80g while that of Aster is 64g. The AAD itself is nearly as big as SM3 which intercepts ballistic missiles at 250km altitude. This is how far we lag behind and this is why we need foreign seeker.
PS: There seems to be some conflict between IAF and IN nomenclature. The IN refers to 70km Barak as LRSAM while the IAF calls its longer range version MRSAM.

Anonymous said...

Its two stage configuration and compact seeker is what makes this 275kg missile comparable to 1200kg AAD (PAC 3 is 350kg).Also its agility has been reported at 80g while that of Aster is 64g
u forget the whole point

everything about AAD and MRSAM is reported but not speed

what is speed of MRSAM compared to
AAD ,AAD is designed to shoot missiles with speed of mach5
while MRSAM is being designed for
anti aircraft,anti cruisemissile and anti PGM missile

MRSAM lacks the speed required to shoot ballistic missiles and it can't go above 20km altitude and it will loose its breath first compared to AAD and AAD has 25-30 km altitude as ABM and it will have range of 100km as anti aircraft missile

AAD doesn't need high G agility because enemy ballistic missile doesn't manouver at high G

and he compares 64G of aster vs 80G of MRSAM but get this aster has more range and there is no such thing in world as of now which manouvers over 20G

moreover for air forece version that too will have only 20km operating alitude and range will be around 100-120km

but s400 has range of 400km with operating altitude of 40km

operating altitude for pac3 and s300pmu2 is also 88000 feet with range of 200km

so comparing MRSAM with AAD is just foolish

Kannan said...

Brahmos Block II testing controversy..DRDO vs Army..again..?
Its also strange we r going for some Harpoons Block III land attack when we have Brahmos.

Harpreet said...

To Anon@3:31:00 AM: Of what little I can make of your language let me explain a few things. All modern SAMs have some degree of ABM capability. Even Akash is effective against SRBM. The distinction is not between anti-aircraft and ABM but between SAMs that operate above the atmosphere and those within it. Missiles like THAAD and SM3 use IR kill vehicles which cannot operate in the atmosphere due to heating which blinds them hence they are exclusive ABMs. Bulky SAMs like S300/400 were developed when IR kill tech was not available. Their long range is not very useful because of ASM/SAM dilemma I explained. SAMs operating in the atmosphere use fins as control surfaces and loose their agility as they move higher into thin atmosphere. DRDO claimed AAD can serve as a SAM with 80km range so it is not very different to MRSAM in capability. Yes missiles do have agility over 20g. Denel's A-Darter does 100g!. MRSAM achieves its high agility by kicking off its second stage in terminal phase while AAD is running on empty at end game. PAC 3 reflects the new doctrine. It is similar to MRSAM with a range of just 50+km (not 200, that was PAC2).

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Harpreet: You're right, the SMX-23 is the Andrasta and that is not the one being offered by ARMARIS. rather, it is the SMX-22 which I had described in one of my earlier uploads late last year.

Anonymous said...

to harpreet

DRDO claimed AAD can serve as a SAM with 80km range so it is not very different to MRSAM in capability
prithvi air defence can shoot other ballistic missiles at an altitude of 80km which have speed of over 5 mach while others like in market s300,400,pac3 r only shoot missiles an alitude upto 40km only but s400 has longest operating range

while AAD can shoot missiles upto 25-30km altitude which have speed upto 5 mach

and thats y drdo claimed PAD,AAD much superior to pac3 US wants to sell

and BUT AAD,PAD can't b used to shoot down sea skimming missiles
while MRSAM is being designed to shoot sea skimming,anti aircraft,anti PGM and thats y MRSAM is designed to pull 80G

WHILEaad,pad BEING SOLELY designed for anti ballistic missiles and anti aircraft as secondary role so there is no need for high G because there r no ballistic missiles which can pull high G while being at hypersonic speed
so AAD,PAD doesn't need to b that manouverable

and MRSAM can go upto only 20km altitude but AAD can go upto 30km

while IN CASE OF MRSAM ITS high speed at 5 mach interception of ballistic missile at the high altitude is questionable
and AAD is more powerful for this purpose and thats y it is bigger

so comparing 2 different missiles which have two different roles is wrong

and most important thing AAD,PAD will cost 3 times less than similar imported missiles

MRSAM is nothing but longer range derby missile which is also used in SPYDER SAM

Harpreet said...

To anon@6:24:00 AM: The whole debate in the media is about import of MRSAM against desi SAMs. The argument that has been put is that AAD can fill in for MRSAM but the import lobby had its way. I have highlighted the benefits of MRSAM. Size is an important measure of deploy ability. The fear of DRDO is not entirely unfounded. It is unlikely that MRSAM and AAD will coexist. Both are indeed similar SAMs though AAD is bigger. But it is too expensive to maintain a dedicated point ABM. We are likely to use MRSAM as our endo-atmospheric interceptor like US uses PAC3. BTW Barak MRSAM is an all new missile and has nothing to do with Spyder-MRSAM, that's a different system.

Anonymous said...

to harpreet

u better compare AAD,PAD WITH ARROW ANTI BALLISTIC MISSILE not with MRSAM and clear u r doubt that isreal has arrow anti ballistic missile as its primary anti ballistic missile system

still frogeting main point what is speed of MRSAM or can it go upto 80 km altitude of PAD or for that matter 30km altitude of AAD and can it sustain its speed at that altitude simple answer BIG NO

arrow anti ballistic missiles r much faster thats why they r bigger to sustain their speed and built to shoot enemy missiles at high altitude and same thing for

u know russian kirov class cruisers these ships have
s300pmu,tor point defence missiles and and ak130/kashtan guns

what tor point defence system can do s300pmu can't and vise versa

tor ans ak130/kashtan point defence system is designed to shoot sea skimming missiles while
s300pmu can't do this and it is more agile than s300pmu missiles

but s300 pmu take care of ballistic missiles and other aircraft at high altitude of 90000feet something tor defence can't do ,so thats y kirov cruisers have 2 missiles with two different roles to fulfil

soMRSAM is more like a long range anti aircraft missile while serve as point defence system or anti cruise missile at short ranges

and yes MRSAM is nothing but long range derby missile u can find it online

Harpreet said...

To Anon@7:53:00 AM: Boy, you are exhausting me. Please go through my posts carefully. Don't speak of AAD and PAD in one breath. Read what I wrote of above atmosphere and within it. Read what I wrote of Bulky SAMs. AAD may be a better ABM but I wrote something about cost of dedicated point ABM. We have chosen MRSAM for some advantages I listed and we may have to live with a limited PAC 3 comparable ABM capability. That does not mean we do not need dedicated above atmosphere area ABM.
MRSAM is not Derby/Python/Spyder. Even its motor and controls were supplied by DRDO. I have its pics from Aero India 2009.Its 22cm dia 4.55m missile. I know Spyder-MRSAM with booster attached to Python/Derby very well. You do the search.

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Anon@7:53AM: Firstly, you cannot and must not compare the LR-Derby (of the SpyDer E-SHORADS system) with the Barak-8/Barak NG MR-SAM. They're poles apart in design and performance parameters. Secondly, you need to appreciate the reasons why the PAD/AAD was sanctioned for R & D in the late 1990s and the genesis of the MR-SAM/LR-SAM R & D projects. As a consequence of this, thirdly, you need to understand why a country will be obliged to develop standalone BMD system to counter nuclear blackmail or a pre-emptive nuclear first strike. At the same time, there's the other type of ABM system that's required to deter conventional warhead-carrying ballistic and cruise missiles that will be targetted against static economic/military installations as well as fielded ground-based military formations. Only after you do all this will you conclude that there's ample room for the AAD and the LR-SAM to co-exist.

To Kannan: There's no comparison between the BrahMos Block 2 and Harpoon Block 3. The former is a strategic precision-guided system while the latter is like the Popeye Lite, i.e. a tactical strike PGM. In addition, the BrahMos is a tri-services PGM, unlike the Harpoon or even its SLAM-ER derivative. Will shortly upload a detailed explanation of the BrahMos Block 2 which outlines the yet-to-be-revealed process (by the mainstream Indian newsmedia) of target acquisition and target engagement, without which any appreciation of the strategic capabilities of the BrahMos Block 2 is next to useless and futile.

Anonymous said...

Eagerly awaiting BrahMos Block 2 details, more so because i suspect that Block 2 might be using the same DRDO developed KA band seeker as in AAD/PAD. It seems to have the right range, resolution and perhaps size.
Prasun, can you confirm or deny this?

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Anon@10:23AM: No, the Ka-band radar (it is an active radar, and not a radar seeker of the type found on the Akash or R-27R) is not on the BrahMos Block 2. If you'd read my previous posts you would've realised by now that both the BrahMos Block 1 & Block 2 come with the X-band Granit JSC-built SGH active radar operating in the SAR mode. Now, try to connect this with the EL/M-2060P SAR pod carried by the Su-30MKI or the EL/M-2022(V)3's SAR operating mode. And by the way, there's no GPS navigation involved with the BrahMos while it is cruising towards its target. All the BrahMos posters displayed at numerous exhibitions thus far since 2001 have clearly displayed where exactly GPS navigation comes into play PRIOR to missile launch. Yet, no one thus far has paid any attention to this. As they say, even with eyes wide open, people many a times don't see the obvious.

Anonymous said...

to harpreet

. Even its motor and controls were supplied by DRDO.
drdo is not fool that they will make both AAD and MRSAM for same purpose

if MRSAM IS good in comparision to AAD then y drdo built AAD ,they could have gone with MRSAM for ABM BUT THEY DIDN'T they build new missile for ABM because MRSAM missile doesn't fit for that and not able to go above 20km altitude and lacks speed

AAD is different purpose and MRSAM is different purpose

if drdo can build this missile(MRSAM) they can also build longer range radars except missile seekers(which can b bought from foreign companies) and MOREOVER there is no tech transfer of seekers IN DEAL

so if drdo is capablr of making long range radars,missile except seeker for which (no tech tranfer) despite the deal is called codevelopment so what is the purpose of going with foreign company

drdo could have done it alone becasue missile seeker tech is still not available and rest like radars,motor and controls drdo can build itself

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Anon@11:16AM: Who said the BMD radars were built by DRDO? Both radars (from Israel and France) are imported. That's no secret. They will be locally produced under licence. Only the applications software packages were developed indigenously.

Anonymous said...

This report says Brahmos uses GPS. The publisher of this journal and the author of this story are both professional journalists with years of experience. It is unlikely that they would risk their credibility by reporting falsely about Brahmos guidance system

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Anon@12:02PM: The publishers and reporters of FRONTLINE MAY BE professionals in all arenas of reportage except military matters, rest assured. For one, the report you've highlighted does not explain how and when exactly GPS updates are obtained and in what phase of the operation (prior to missile launch or after missile launch). Secondly, it does not specify which GPS system is utilised: Navstar or Glonass. For pinpoint strikes the BrahMos would have to have access to Py-code GPS updates every 2 seconds, and this is only available from Glonass and not from Navstar. Therefore, to even suggest that the BrahMos went off course due to unavailability of GPS navigational updates on the day the new US President was being sworn in is ludicrous, to say the least. Thirdly, the article does not even explain how exactly the target acquisition takes place PRIOR to missile launch. In fact, in ALL articles published in any India-based magazine thus far, NO ONE has explained how exactly target acquisition takes place and what exactly is the launch sequence. They haven't even printed any of the BrahMos posters that have been shown in numerous exhibitions both in India and abroad and which clearly explain the roles played by satellites with reference to BrahMos' target acquisition/engagement sequences. Fourthly, none of these so-called 'professional' journalists have even attempted to describe what kind of firing range is made available for the test-firings of the BrahMos' land attack variant, and under what kind of limitations all such test-firings have been conducted since 2003. Even worse, they haven't even published any photo or diagram of the BrahMos' SGH X-band SAR radar--whereas I had uploaded its photo last year itself and it was also published as far back as 2004 in FORCE. That's how professional the mainstream Indian newsmedia is!

Anonymous said...

"Who said the BMD radars were built by DRDO? Both radars (from Israel and France) are imported. That's no secret. They will be locally produced under licence. Only the applications software packages were developed indigenously."

....and the interseptor missile too!!

Anonymous said...

to prasun

To Anon@11:16AM: Who said the BMD radars were built by DRDO? Both radars (from Israel and France) are imported. That's no secret. They will be locally produced under licence. Only the applications software packages were developed indigenously.
my meaning wasn't regarding BMD radar but about radar for MRSAM

since MRSAM is just 70 km range missiles and if drdo can build its motor and controls and if drdo can build 150km ROHINI radar

and if there is no tech transfer for missiles seekers in this deal which anyway has to b bought directly from israel the same thing drdo could do at home by importing missiles seeker

ROHINI 3D radar and it can b used with MRSAM without any problem
if everything else can b made at home like 150km range rohini radar,missile motor and controls except seeker which anyway has to b bought directly from israel so what is the meaning to go for the deal with israel and that makes no sense and what kind of codevelopment is this

Anonymous said...

russia offered full tech tansfer for its S400 to turkey

and we better should go for this system as well and it is much better than MRSAM

saptarshi dasgupta said...

can u tell me something about the status of the RFP issued for around 380000 carbines by army,out of which 43318 carbines were to be procured off the shelf ,and 120000 were to be manufactured under license,,,while 220000 were from indian designs like ZITTARA or MINSAS..PLEASE inform about the competing models of carbines and the companies participating in the tender

Harpreet said...

Prasun, going through your blog I found your pledge to "release ATV design in 2 months time" some 4 months back. Will you give us a glimpse of our Nano Boomer. I hope this technology demonstrator is not an embarrassment of a sub.

Anonymous said...

prasun, BMD radars weren't simply bought off.

VK Saraswat has time and again mentioned that the so-called swordfish radar or LRTR is NOT the greenpine radar, but is developed with israeli help and has better performance.

he stressed it repeatedly at AI09.

Prasun K Sengupta said...

TO saptarshi dasgupta da: Alas, I've not been keeping track of developments in the small arms arena.

To Harpreet: Alas again... I was indeed going to oblige you by last January, but as you are aware, the ATV Nano-Boomer's launch has been delayed to the third quarter of this year, and I'm regretfully and consequently obliged to delay my upcoming ATV-related posts as well. But don't harbour any high expectations of it being a boomer of any kind as it is only a technology demonstration project of the DRDO. By no means will it be the definitive SSBN design. The main objective of the ATV project is to test the hull integrity and the functionality of the nuclear propulsion system. Therefore, the ATV vessel has been built accordingly and its hull structure will reflect only these design objectives. One must also bear in mind that unlike the Navy's Naval Design Bureau, the DRDO does not have any such in-house submarine design bureau. Therefore, all such limitations ought to be borne in mind when trying to visualise the ATV's shape and size.

To Anon@10:01AM: The MR-SAM/LR-SAM also involves more than 60% tech transfer from Israel (for those systems & sub-systems being developed by Israeli OEMs). Also, you must stop comparing the S-400 with the MR-SAM and start thinking about the LR-SAM.

To Anon@10:35AM: I'm willing to believe you and Dr Saraswat or any other amigo from DRDO PROVIDED any DRDO-issued publication reveals photos of the LRTR's final assembly line (either inside LRDE or BEL), just as BrahMos Aerospace has issued table-top calendars and posters since 2003 showing the assembly lines at BrahMos Integration Complex, and components and sub-structures made by Godrej & Boyce, etc. Seeing is believing, as they say. Until such photographic evidence is produced--even by BEL for the Rajendra BLR and the WLR--I cannot and will not believe a word of whatever claims the mandarins at DRDO have made, or are making, and will be making in the time to come.

Nava said...

The LRTR may well be better (extended range and better multi-track capability) than the original green pine, but the Israelis
themselves have upgraded their radar... So if he said that it was an enhanced version built with Israeli "help", its probably a GP upgraded by Elta.

Anonymous said...

the range requirement of SAM for air force version was 150km but it was reduced to 70km for benefits of israel so what kind of LRSAM u r talking about

Anonymous said...

and moreover if MRSAM has the range of just 70 km and operating altitude of just 20km

and if there is LRSAM and if its range becomes 120-150km it will still b much inferior against

40km operating altitude and 400km range of S400

Prasun K Sengupta said...

As of now, there's no industrial facility/assembly line within India that is capable of series-producing/fabricating active phased-array radars, be it ground-based, shipborne or airborne. Laboratory-based fabrication of L-band and S-band T/R modules does not automatically translate into a capability for series-producing AESA radars. Forget the radars, the DRDO has not even released any photos of the Mission Control Centre (MCC) and the Launch Control Centre (LCC). I strongly suspect if such photos were ever released, the ELTA connection will emerge undeniably. Also, just like it did for the Akash SAM & Rohini 3-D CAR, the DRDO would have by now published its own brochures of the LRTR, MCC and LCC or at the very least would have shown them on posters during expos like Aero India and DEFEXPO, if indeed these were all developed and built indigenously. But since all these have not yet been showcased publicly, I'm sure we all can draw the appropriate conclusions, the DRDO's claims notwithstanding.

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Anon@2:12PM: Dude, get your facts right instead of manipulating them. The 70km-range MR-SAM is meant for all three armed services, with the 120km-range LR-SAM being destined for the IAF, with the Indian Navy retaining the option to induct the LR-SAM as well. So who scaled-down what? Don't confuse others. And mind you, the primary targets of the MR-SAM and LR-SAM will be manned airborne aircraft and cruise missiles, so what's a service ceiling of 40km got to do with all this? Which combat aircraft or missile will be cruising at 40km altitude? And do you know what exactly does tech-transfer mean and what kind of tech-transfer has been promised by Russia to Turkey for the S-400? Is it intellectual or industrial? Even the transfer of technical and maintenance manuals by the OEM to the end-user is tech-transfer, in case you didn't know.

Pragadeesh said...

Hello Prasun,It's really nice to notice that your blog is very much informative and filled with healthy discussions but a freidnly advice - please kindly stop calling the people who are working hard for India's national security as mandrin. Those are the people who develop technologies and equipments, which you write about - in other words fodder for your mainstream work.If you are an Indian citizen and can understand the value of those people,Kindly consider this request. Photos can be produced or fabricated using some software, it's upto you to accept someone's claim or not to accept it - that's your basic right.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Sengupta what then is the range and ceiling performance of the AAD and PAD ? PAD has demonstrated a 75-80km ceiling and the AAD a 15km ceiling so far but what are their design ceilings and ranges ?

Anonymous said...

Prasun Sir, reading your posts let me see if I understand things:

The IAF is to order 9-15 squadrons of the LR-SAM (120km range and 27km ceiling) with an option for squadrons of the MR-SAM (70km range 15km ceiling).

It has already ordered 2 squadrons of the LR-SAM and 2 squadrons of Akash and 6 squadrons of Spyder.

Am I correct ? Please correct if I am wrong.

Also, is the army procuring the Spyder ?

Anonymous said...

Hi I came in from BuA's blog. Firstly I wanna praise your commentory that makes absoulute sense on that blog. I didnt know ur blog is so hot. This is my first time here and there is so much to read I dont know how any work is gonna get done today!!

You are generous in giving answers, and this may already be answered before but if u dont mind, i asked in BUA's blog-

"Prasun I would also love to hear your take on Arjun. Flat out let me ask you in anticipation of a short and direct answer.

Does Arjun deserve to be inducted in present form or not? Is the current rollie-pollie going on the fault of the DRDO (as accused by the Army) or Army's fault due to corrupt nature?

Many thanks"

Harpreet said...

Prasun, please clear my doubts regarding the new barak's nomenclature. It appears to me that LR-SAM is the designation IN gave to its original 70km barak deal while its extended 120km version is in response to IAF's MR-SAM requirement. So IN and IAF have their own definition of what is long range or medium range.
Regarding ATV, I hope it doesn't look like a depth charge or a tube tethered to a support ship. If that is the case then DRDO or you should taper the hype built around it by releasing its design before it invites ridicule like the desi 10$ laptop.
A Q on arty: Is it possible for us to offset some of our medium caliber arty requirement by ordering large number of Pinakas. I know gun artillery is much cheaper to rocket artillery but the difference may not be much considering the move towards precision arty. It is easier to make different types of guided rockets than guided gun shells due to high g forces involved. Besides rockets have their advantages in mobility and firepower. So instead of wasting more time on farce gun trials and spending good money on imported guns and their ammo why not employ an ingenious solution in our special circumstances? Why do we have to do just what everyone else does?

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Pragadeesh: It depends on what your definition of the term 'Mandarin' is. As far as I can tell, the rest of the world does not view this term as derogatory. Regarding photographic evidence, what you're implying is that the DRDO itself can manipulate photos that it publishes in its own in-house publications. I for one don't think the DRDO will stoop so low.

To Anon@8:44PM: Until the DRDO publishes the target/interceptor track plots of the flight-paths of the PAD-1/AAD one will never know for sure the performance parameters of these two interceptor missiles.

To Anon@9:34PM: What has been confirmed officially by the IAF to date is the order for the 2 sqns of Akash E-SHORADS and six sqns of SpyDer. The quantity of LR-SAMs and MR-SAMs to be acquired has not yet been established, but only projected and these are all conservative projections for now. The SpyDers and Akash will both be used to replace the S-125 Pechora E-SHORADS. The Indian Army too is procuring the SpyDer to replace the existing OSA-AK and Strella-10M SHORADS. The Army originally wanted the Akash's M-SAM variant to replace the Kub/Kvadrat M-SAMs but as the Akash's engagement envelope has been unable to attain the specified 40km-range, the Army is not in favour of acquiring the Akash and has already ruled it out. It is for this reason that no one is now talking about BEL producing the Akash's Battery Surveillance Radar (BSR).

To Anon@10:28PM: To give you a straight answer, if the T-90S MBT with a much lower first-round hit probability than the Arjun Mk1 and with much lower levels of hit survivability can be inducted into service in large numbers, I see no reason why the Arjun Mk1 cannot be inducted as well.

To Harpreet: OK, let's clear the fog surrounding the MR-SAM/LR-SAM issue once and for all. The genesis of these two programmes goes back to 2004 based on a presentation given to the Indian Navy by Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI). At that time itself, the missile was designated as Barak-2 and according to the presentation, IAI was aiming to take the same R & D roadmap as that for the MBDA-built Aster-15/Aster-30 system. Thus, the MR-SAM variant was called the Barak-8 (meaning it would have a maximum range of 80km and not below 70km), while the LR-SAM variant with a projected 120km-range was called Barak NG. The Indian Navy had by early 2006 officially committed itself to the MR-SAM/Barak-8 for its three Project 15A DDGs and projected seven Project 17A FFGs, and also reserved the option for going for the Barak NG/LR-SAM for the seven Project 15B DDGs. At the same time, the IAF too became interested in both the MR-SAM/Barak-8 and Barak NG/LR-SAM, with the former to be employed for the air defence of vulnerable points (VP) and the latter to be used for providing air defence for vulnerable areas (VA). The last to come in was the Army, which was desperately looking for a replacement for its Kub/Kvadrat M-SAMs and therefore immediately committed itself to acquiring the MR-SAM/Barak-8. As far back as mid-2007 I had written about this very combined tri-services MR-SAM/LR-SAM acquisition process in FORCE magazine. While the target search/engagement radar for the Navy’s MR-SAM/Barak-8 and Barak NG/LR-SAM will be the shipborne EL/M-2248 MF-STAR, the radars to be used for the IAF’s MR-SAM/Barak-8 and Barak NG/LR-SAM will be the ground-based EL/M-2082 and aerostat-mounted EL/M-2083 target search search/acquisition radars and the EL/M-2084 engagement radar. The Army’s MR-SAM/Barak-8 too will use the aerostat-mounted EL/M-2083 target search search/acquisition radar and the EL/M-2084 target engagement radar. The Army has not yet committed to the Barak NG/LR-SAM but is widely expected to do so eventually.
Regarding your query on field artillery, the Pinaka MBRL cannot be considered a substitute for 155mm howitzers for the simple reason that the Pinaka MBRL has been designed as an area saturation weapon during massed fire assaults. As yet no one can match the firing accuracy of 155mm howitzers, unless one is using GPS-guided or laser-guided MBRL rockets, which are prohibitively expensive for India as of now. Furthermore, with 155mm/52-cal motorised howitzers like the Ceasar from France’s Nexter Systems, targets as far away as 51km can be accurately engaged when using unguided VLAP projectiles.

Anonymous said...

I don't understand the logic behind the army's rejection of Aakash. If army wants a MR-SAM then fine. But what defence do we have after that when we phase out the Pechora & Kvadarat. It is widely believed that LR-SAM like BVRAAM are unreliable as they can be easily jammed, out maneuvered by aircraft. So it is always prudent to have a multi layered air-defence where planes and SAMs operate together to defend the airspace in depth. Barak NG or Barak 8 alone is not enough. we need another layer of SAMs. I heard the Aakash is highly agile and comparable to Patriot. The Spyder is mainly a modified AA missile not as agile as Aakash. If we can develop an AESA and also put an RF seeker on Aakash, the Aaksh, Barak 8/NG and air defence planes like Mig-29 will form a deadly combination. When the Aakash is superior to Spyder, and there is need for E-SHORADS to form the inner ring of defence, why doesn't army order Aakash. Its initial cost may be high but its maintenance cost will more than make up for the procurement cost bcoz spyder is israeli.

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Anon@10:32AM: Firstly, the Army does not use Pechoras, but only Kub/Kvadrat, Strella 10Ms and Igla-S. Secondly, if we proceed by "your logic" then all missiles--AAMs or SAMs--are likely to be rendered useless by jamming. Therefore, can we all infer that let's stop all wasteful procurements of AAMs and SAMs and instead have only manned combat aircraft? Tegarding your mention of "another layer of SAMs required", that's where the SpyDer procurement comes in? Haven't you been reading the earlier comments/posts carefully? And for your info, missiles originally developed for air combat (like the SpyDer's Derby and Python 5) are far more agile than SAMs like Akash. In addition, the Akash is nowhere near even to the MIM-104 Patriot PAC-1. When the Akash's R & D phase got underway in the mid-1980s all kinds of claims were being made by DRDO officials about how the Akash will employ the same kind of track-via-missile homing system as that of the Patriot, and we all know now that this is nowhere near to the truth and the Akash now employs just a semi-active command line-of-sight guidance system, which is far inferior to what the MR-SAM and SpyDer's Derby offers with active radar-based terminal guidance system. Therefore, if the MR-SAM can do more and can do much better than what the Akash can do, why waste money on the Akash? Why should money be spent on reinforcing failures instead of bolstering success stories? FYI the DRDO as yet has been unable to develop any kind of active radar for any kind of application. The active radars of the PAD, AAD and Astra are all imported off-the-shelf. And lastly, don't forget the SR-SAM, being co-developed by the DRDO and MBDA, which too will have an imported on-board active radar. In future, the SR-SAM will replace the SHORADS of the IAF and Army and that explains why the 2S6 Tunguska and SpyDer have thus far been ordered in only limited quantities.

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To All Concerned: Here's the weblink to yet another story that only spreads further disinformation:

While this story tries to reinforce the allegations of corruption purpotedly associated with the MR-SAM/LR-SAM procurements, what the story does not reveal is that this contract was inked in order to operationalise at long last the OFB's Nalanda-based factory that was originally to be supplied on a turnkey basis by South Africa's DENEL Group (under a contract inked in 2002) and was to undertake the production of 130mm and 155mm cargo rounds and related modular charges. As we all know now, this contract with DENEL was cancelled in 2004 (due to the UPA govt's vindictive politics against George Fernandes, I guess) and since then the partially built industrial infrastructure has only been gathering dust, instead of being commissioned in 2004. And now that Israel Military Industries (IMI) has been roped in to arrest the damage and operationalise this OFB factory ASAP, conspiracy theories about corruption and nefarious designs are once again being dessiminated! By the way, the OFB had another factory in Bolangir that was built on a turnkey basis by US-based Day & Zimmermann and was 90% ready by May 1998 when its commissioning was suspended indefinitely due to the Shakti-1/2 nuclear weapons tests. This factory too was operationalised by 2004 with IMI's help and now produces 155mm and 130mm HE/smoke/incendiary/white phospherous rounds and their charge bags.

Nava said...


Two technical questions about radars and radar jamming.
First, if a radar or EW system uses "solid state transmitters", does this mean it is necessarily an AESA?
Secondly, what are multi beam array transmitters (MBAT)?


Prasun K Sengupta said...

All existing new-generation radars use solid-state electronics, be it the transmitters, receivers, PSPs etc. For multi-beam array transmitters go to RAFAEL's website and check out the brochure of the Skyshield EW pod.

Nava said...

Thanks for the promptly reply...

However, even after checking out the Sky Shield (BTW, impressive system), I'm still having trouble understanding the difference between this MBAT and the electronic high agility steering that advanced radars
employ to achieve multi track and engagement capabilities. Is there one?

Anonymous said...

Mr. Senguptat Thanks for your efforts to answer our queries.

Whether right or wrong, you at least respond to our questions with something.

To ask further, how many Spyder launchers will be in the 6 IAF squadrons and how many will the army order ?

Also, what do you suggest might be the number of LR-SAM and MR-SAM squadrons the IAF might procure ?

Anonymous said...

Mr. Prasun, what is the nature of US-Israeli help to India in the anti-ballistic missile sphere and is that help likely to be accelerated in forms of tech-transfer and perhaps even more advanced missiles ?

Anonymous said...

Akash is cheaper than Spyder by not having active seeker. It may be good to have all bells and whistles in a SAM, but sometimes if the cheap missile can do the same thing why go for the expensive one. Prasun, can you tell us in what other way Akash is of below standard which may not let it work against incoming aircrafts.

Anonymous said...

prasun why r you so pro-israel? when even israel is badmouthed the first one to raise their voice is Prasun. He will do his wheeling-dealing with us, who he knows are not as big wheeler-dealer choots like him and feed us with some fantasies to paint israel as good boy.

juz kidding lol prasun dont get emo...

Harpreet said...

Prasun, Thanks for the clarifications.
Does the IN have any plans for employing nuclear battery in submarines. They have advantages over AIP sans the complexity of operating full fledged nuclear submarines. Barc is developing a bath tub sized 100kw experimental CHTR (Compact High Temperature Reactor) having a core life of 15 years, with the goal to develop 5mw nuclear battery for remote operations in rural areas.

Anonymous said...

who is comparing akash with spyder ??

akash -- medium range area defence weapon. no on-board seeker --> better anti-jamming features.
would be supplemented by MR-SAM.

spyder-SHORT range quick reaction POINT defence missile bought as stop-gap measure.
corresponding to TRISHUL.
will be replaced by DRDO/MBDA maitri missile in future.

Anonymous said...

Russia will start deliveries of Mi-35 Hind attack helicopters to Brazil by the end of 2009, a senior government official said on Monday.

The Russian helicopter beat off fierce competition from the Augusta A-129 Mangusta and the Eurocopter AS-665 Tiger to win a Brazilian tender last fall.

The official said the contract was worth about $150 million

The Mi-35 Hind E is an improved export version of the famed Mi-24 attack helicopter, which combines high fire power with a troop transport capability
our contract was worth $ 500 million dollars so if 12 Mi-35 hinds can be bought for $ 150 million than 22 mi35,mi28n,ka50,
ka52 can be bought for
$ 300 million

moreover as prasun said that there is similarity between the engines of mi35,mi17,mi28n ans some other spares

so if india buys attack helicopters from russia we will still save $ 200 million staright

moreover Mi35 can carry troops too while an apache can't

Anonymous said...

akaash is still pretty capable against all 4.5 generation aircrafts AND FOR THOSE who crticize its low level performance performance they must know that low level interception below 200 meter is work of point defence systems not the work of SAM like akaash,shtil

shtil sam IS on new shivalik frigates and there is kashtan point defence system which is able to engage threats below 200 meters and shtil can't do this

akaash's sensors r totally passive and can't be jammed and thats a very good acheivement

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Nava@1:42PM: yes, there is. Check out the brochure of the EL/M-2080S radar at ELTA Systems' website. That's the improved Green Pine.

To Anon@2:55PM: One squadron comprises three Batteries and each Battery contains six launch vehicles and each vehicle has four missile launchers (2 with Derby and 2 with Python-5). If you do the math you will get the numbers you're asking for. The same goes for the MR-SAM and LR-SAM, with the only difference being the vertical launcher cluster on each vehicle will contain 12 missile launchers.

To Anon@6:50PM: It is not an issue of cost, but about capabilities. The Derby, when equipped with a booster, has a range of almost 36km, while that of the Akash is 25km! Furthermore, the lethal combination of Derby and Python-5 results in the creation of a 'no-escape' engagement zone similar to what can be done when the R-27ER and R-27ET are employed together. Therefore, the Akash as an E-SHORADS miserably falls short of expectations. Had the Akash been upgraded with a more capable booster rocket and taken it out to 60km (like the KS-1A from CPMIEC) then it would have been a potent system. But since the DRDO is mkaing no such effort, it remains at best an E-SHORADS and that too inferior to the likes of the SpyDer, Raytheon's SL-AMRAAM-ER and CPMIEC of China's Hunter-2.

To Anon@12:18AM: It is not about being pro- or anti-Israel. Rather, it is all about objectivity and clarity. I have nothing to gain by either 'pro-Israel' or 'anti-Israel' slants.

To Anon@6:16AM: The Trishul, like the Jernas from MBDA, had a miserable range of 9km at most. The Maitri, in contrast, will have a range of up to 24km.

To Anon@9:23AM: You're mistaken. The Akash does depend on the Rajendra BLR for course-correction cues and is indeed susceptible to airborne wideband directional jamming.

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Harpreet: No matter who compact a nuclear reactor may be, the related safety features required to go with such a propulsion system alone will ensure that such a power generation system does not remain all that compact. And definitely when compared to the AIP module, the CHTR module will be enormous in terms of dimensions. It also needs to be said that BARC did not design the ATV's n-powerplant. Instead, it has reverse-engineered a proven compact nuclear reactor that was originally designed and built by Russia for nuclear-powered ice-breakers.

Harpreet said...

Prasun, nuclear battery are a new generation of reactors under development that do not require any attendance or maintenance and are small enough to be road mobile. We are not alone in this quest. US is developing SSTAR and HPG
Australia is considering a similar solution for its next generation of submarines.
BARC is much more efficient compared to DRDO. Their reactor designs are unique(a consequence of isolation) and technology admired in the world. Their problems associated with ATV have more to do with lack of experience in designing enriched uranium based reactors which does not figure in our adopted nuclear fuel cycle.
I do not expect prompt response from you to my querys. You are better positioned to investigate such matters.

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Harpreet: I did check out the weblinks you gave, but have not come across any firm plans by any navy thus far to incorporate them on board SSBNs or SSGNs. Having said that, the ATV Project Office is clearly erring on the side of caution by going for previously proven reactor designs, although it has the option of evaluating futuristic CHTRs, provided the safety features of such reactor designs are conclusively proven. The problem with BARC does not seem to be human resource-related, but the lack of the reqd R & D funds.

Anonymous said...

You've mentioned Spyder reaching out to 36km. Is the IAF and army procuring this variant or only the shorter ranged variant ?

sachin_sathe said...


if this CHTR project comes through in reasonable timeframe(more than likely given BARC's performance history) it will have a big big effect on IN's nuclear sub vision as it might mean that IN can build a SSN in the Barracuda class size.

Also, can u post a CGI of P-15A if possible there is some ambiguity in the images that i have seen on the net.

Harpreet said...

Fair enough, CHTR has yet to prove itself. However the concept of hybrid nuclear submarines is not my proposal. Canada had developed Autonomous Marine Power Source (AMPS) in the 80's though they didn't pursue it then. Recently the interest has been revived with Russian Project 20120. One thing is sure - when these new reactors come online they will revolutionize not just submarine propulsion but many other aspects of our life. Greatfully India is a leading player in the development of 4th Gen reactors.
Further reading on Small Reactors .
Coming to SR-SAM, do you know what kind of development model will be followed. The dummy displayed at Aero India 2009 looked less like Astra and more like VL-Mica with a large Astra motor thrusted into it.
What will be our contribution and how SR-SAM will be different to VL-Mica?

sachin_sathe said...


my guess is since we might not see a full blown SSGN before 2014 (would be good if it comes earlier but unlikely). The BARC is one of those very few Government institutions which are actually quite practical in terms of stating and proving their abilities thus i would't be surprised if & when they come through with this project. Also, the very nature of the project means it will get the required funding.

As far at the SRSAM is concerned i think the indian contribution is going to be in integrating it into a seamless fit with the indian RADAR systems and ADGES network. also the Mica and astra are somewhat similar in design and astra is a heavier missile so we might see astra being used with an additional booster.can u clarify on this prasun?

also PLEASE post the ADDENDUM 3 & 4.

Anonymous said...

to prasun

did u noticed in akaash brochures published by DRDO in those pics u can easily see that almost half of the space is occupied by ramjet engine and only 1/4 room available for fuel

if they can imporve the fuel by twice then akaash could have range of 50km easily

moreover if they use solid propellent motor in akaash missile
then it would occupy only 1/4 space in missile and rest 1/2 will be occupied by fuel and rest 1/4 for sensors so this may increase range

solid propellant motor is much smaller compared to ramjet engine

Anonymous said...

Russia is to deliver S-400 Triumf (SA-21 Growler) surface-to-air missile systems to Belarus under an integrated air-defense agreement, a senior Belarusian military official said on Wednesday.

Igor Azarenok, commander of the Air Force and Air Defense Forces, said the countries' defense ministries were currently discussing delivery terms.

The S-400 is designed to intercept and destroy airborne targets at a distance of up to 400 kilometers (250 miles), twice the range of the U.S. MIM-104 Patriot, and 2 1/2 times that of the S-300PMU-2.

The system is also believed to be able to destroy stealth aircraft, cruise missiles and ballistic missiles, and is effective at ranges up to 3,500 kilometers (2,200 miles) and speeds up to 4.8 kilometers (3 miles) per second

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Anon@2:29PM: Yes, India is procuring the SpyDer-ER pending the arrival of the SR-SAM.

To Harpreet: If you compare the airframe of the SR-SAM with that of the MBDA- (MATRA) built Super 530D BVRAAM, the will get the answer. The SR-SAM's project slant range will be 24km, more than what the VL-MICA offers. The SR-SAM's airframe, flight-control systems and propulsion system will be built by Bharat Dynamics Ltd, while the proportional navigation system and RF proximity fuze will be built by both BEL and ECIL. And like the VL-MICA, the SR-SAM will come with two types of seekers: the active radar that will come from Russia's AGAT JSC (same as that for the Astra BVRAAM), while the imaging infra-red seeker (the same as that on the MICA-IR) will be supplied by MBDA. It will be interesting to see who supplies the ground-based target acquisition/engagement AESA radar: an indigenous model, or one sourced from THALES or from ELTA.

To Sachin_Sathe: The SSBN is at least a decade away. ADDENDUM 3 & 4 is still 'work in progress'.

To Anon@8:24AM: Yes, that is indeed possible but that will entail the total redesign of the missile's launch-and-carrier vehicles. That too is possible, but it is too late now to initiate work on this because the funds for this have already been re-allocated for the MR-SAM project. The problem to me is not about R & D for this project. The problem arose in the late 1980s itself when it was decided to benchmark the Akash's performance parameters with that of the Pechora. If at that time the DRDO had decided to benchmark the Akash's performance parameters with that of the KUB/Kvadrat with an option to increase the range of the Akash Mk2 to 60km, then we would have by now had a superlative MR-SAM. But alas...that was not to be.

Harpreet said...

The Matra Super 530 is a pretty heavy missile and comparable to MR-SAM in size. Any reason to select such a legacy design for SR-SAM.

Prasun K Sengupta said...

I strongly suspect that MBDA transferred the Super 530D's design/engineering data packages to DRDL for a symbolic 'fee' so that re-engineering would not be a problem. Thus, having proven its 'good intentions' in terms of technology-sharing, the quid pro quo to be expected from the Indian side would be the lucrative contracts being placed with THALES for the target search/engagement radars and related containerised command-and-control modules.
Regarding the weight and dimensions of the SR-SAM, it will now be in the same league as Raytheon's SL-AMRAAM-ER. A slant range of 22km/26km will be quite impressive for an E-SHORADS, similar to the MBDA-built Spada 2000, but having the advantage of being vertically launched. The MR-SAM's length will be more than that of the SR-SAM.

Harpreet said...

Thanks, This leaves LR-SAM. From Aero India 2009 I know that MR-SAM is already a 2 stage missile. I have not seen any specs or design of LR-SAM. Will it have a longer first stage or a booster attached to MR-SAM making it a 3 stage missile.
I think we live in different time zones, its time for me to go to bed. I really appreciate the work you do on this blog. Keep it up! Its important to educate nascent and journos alike in this country on matters concerning nationa security.
Good Night.

Anonymous said...

americans forcing this UPA govt to buy their equipments on which they have reservations

like 197 helicopters deal was cancelled because of BELL left

combat helicopter deal was scrapped because BOEING AND BELL left

american wants to sell us their
PAC3 WHILE S400 beats it hands down

i now hope this time that NDA govt will com in power these bastards UPA come under pressure from foreign govt so easily

Harpreet said...

Prasun, an amazing feature of SL-Amraam-ER is that it doesn't require fire control radars and just a 3-D search radar is required for the system to know the positions of targets and to launch SL-Amraam-ERs on vectors that allow them to acquire the target using their on-board active radar seeker.
That means many more naval platforms with just a 3-D search radar can have air defense capability.
Can SR-RAM support such a feature?

Harpreet said...

Correction: SR-SAM not RAM

Anonymous said...

S400 system comprises of several missiles of different range

this system includes missiles of 400km ,200km ,90km,and point defence system (tor system )

so for the shooting down dirt sheap PGM then a point defence system can be used

for shooting down a missile with nukes a missile with 400km range or missile with 200km range can be used

otherwise whether AN AShM will make several hundred million destroyer or frigate piece of trash or or ballistic missile will make city a plane ground

so using S400 system is much cheaper than loosing a city or frigate or destroyer

by the way s400 system can be used by both air force or army

Anonymous said...

to anon@3:33:00 AM

nobody gives you 100% tech. did russia give us bhramos seeker or ramjet tech. or the astra, SRRAM seeker tech which we are getting from AGAT.

not all AESA are the same. there is a gen of difference between russian and US/israel AESA tech.

MRSAM will come with dule mode IR/radar seeker(in one seeker, not like mica). russia has nothing like this.

Anonymous said...

to anon at 4.40

not all AESA are the same. there is a gen of difference between russian and US/israel AESA tech
i will say israel has nothing like S400 can MRSAM,LRSAM match the range and operating altitude of
S400 no waaaaay

if israel or russia doesn't tranfer tech than better go for a system which is better and that system is s400

y r u bringing aesa here,even patriot and aegis system have PESA radars

but s400 has bigger PESA antenna than patriot

moreover the israeli radar being offered for naval ships already outclassed by SAMPSON radar and SAMRT L radar these radars can detect 1000 targets upto 400km

in brahmos seeker is ours

and MRSAM v will not have seeker tech nor its aesa radar tech will be transferred so y not go for S400 system which is better in all aspects

seekers in MRSAM is nothing but the seekers used in spyder SAM

in spyder SAM two missiles derby and python 4 r used

python 4 has IR seeker and derby has RADAR SEEKER and israel is going to use same seekers in MRSAM

Anonymous said...

to anon at 4,40

there is no tech which ever gets older PESA radars r still competitive against aesa radars

this has been proven by irbis e radar which outclasses apg79,80,
rbe2 aesa,amsar radars

russian aesa radars may be generation behind to western aesa but in combat all that matters is detection range and russian aesa will have the similar detecting range to apg79,rbe2 aesa and simultaneous air to air or air to ground functions and thats the main thing

if irbis e radar can detect targets at 400km than the pesa radars for s300,s400 r much more capable than irbis e

Anonymous said...

prasun! pls apply for guiness book of records for the most number of comments ever recd for a blog item.

Harpreet said...

To Anon@ 6:19:00 AM: Range is not the pinnacle of SAMs. Why not put a seeker on Agni and make it a super-dooper SAM. Its difficult to identify a target as a foe in the clutter of sky even at 100km(despite FOF systems). This is where the resolution of AESA and its ability to discriminate in clutter beats PESA thumbs down.
MR-SAM is being offered with MF-STAR AESA radar. Both the radar and the missile are extremely compact making it much more deployable than S400.
For the last time:- Mr-SAM has nothing to do with spyder/python or its seeker. And Brahmos seeker is not indigenous. Please read the posts above.

Anonymous said...

Its difficult to identify a target as a foe in the clutter of sky even at 100km(despite FOF systems).
range alone discriminates the target in sky

can apg79 detect .01 ^ square target at 90 km i don't think so
it won't even see the target and if target can't b seen then the identification of that target is distance thing

moreover target discrimination ability also being applied to current pulse doppler radars but it will be limited compared to aesa or pesa

MR-SAM is being offered with MF-STAR AESA radar. Both the radar and the missile are extremely compact making it much more deployable than S400
S400 is easily deployble also it takes around 20 minutes

MF STAR AESA is for naval ships and which radar is offered for air force version is still not clear anD not sure there will b the tech tranfer for this radar

Mr-SAM has nothing to do with spyder/python or its seeker
so from where those IR/RADAR seekers coming for MRSAM and this is most probable that these seekers will be from spyder SAM because israel has developed these seekers for spyder sam and israel will use them in MRSAM

all countries use the exixting tech to build next gen tech ANS THERE IS NO CLEAR VERIFICATION that those seekers used in spyder SAM will not be used

Anonymous said...

i can also say that tor missile system is much more compact than spyder SAM or barak point defence sam and is much faster to deploy

Anonymous said...

there alreay exixt a land based version of MBDA ASTER MISSILE whic h is already in service and has better range

Harpreet said...

To Anon@9:12:00 AM: Air defense is not a simple issue that can be resolved to figures of range, height etc. Even these are notional figures and don't give the true capability of a SAM. Heard of AESA's ability of focusing power at specific directions. You think you can describe an AESA's range and resolution with a single figure? If you are at awe at PESA's capability then think of AESA as 10X.
The IAF version will come with a single face version of MF-STAR.
Duel mode, tri mode and even quard mode seekers are new technologies that are redefining state of the art. This is why our armed forces are so excited about MR-SAM. We need to retain technological edge over China to balance some of their overwhelming superiority.
Don't underestimate the operational aspects of an AD system, the low downtime of AESA against PESA and above all the ability to hide AD from enemy's SEAD capability which only an AESA can do.
As for deploy ability can you put the S400 system on a corvette or disguise it as a regular army truck and not put it in large crop circles visible from space.
You seem to think target identification involves shooting down anyone who does not respond to your FOF beacon. Ever considered how much of domestic and international traffic will be flying in your engagement range. Choppers, sports enthusiast, charters. Over international waters others may not even bother to tell you who they are and where they are headed. Remember when a US destroyer shot down an Iranian airliner. This is where AESA is better able to discriminate. Those who operate it admit it.

Anonymous said...

to harpreet

what happened at kosovo when f117 was shot down by old SAM and the radars in s400 r much better

i am not talking about MRSAM FOR NAVY BUT FOR AIR FORCE version

The principal distinctions between the S-400 and its predecessor lie in further refinements to the radar and software, and the addition of four new missile types in addition to the legacy 48N6E/48N6E2 used in the S-300PMU2 Favorit. As a result an S-400 battery could be armed with arbitrary mixes of these weapons to optimise its capability for a specific threat environment


S400 SYSTEM works with 3 different radars

3D RADAR(59N6 Protivnik GE)


67N6 Gamma DE RADAR

Harpreet said...

Ha ha. You think I haven't read this stuff. I tell you what happened in Kosovo. They kept their radars turned off and used them to ambush by suddenly turning them on.
Kind of guerrilla Air Defence. Not an idea for seamless Air Defense.
Both IAF and IN will use MF-STAR. Single face rotating version for IAF and 4 face version for IN.
Thanks for reminding 3 S400 radars. MR-SAM does with a single Low Probability of Intercept AESA MF-STAR radar. Both for search and target acquisition. Smart!

Prasun, I admire your patience. I could never run my blog. Getting sleepy now.
Can someone answer querys I have posted above.

Anonymous said...

what is the range of MFSTAR AESA

russians r not fools that they will use 3 radars it has some purpose for detection of stealthy objects

moreover SRSAM can be taken out by agm88 and kh 31p both of these missiles have range of over 100km

and aircraft which will launch anti radiation missiles will be well outside the range of MRSAM and MFSTAR can be destroyed

moreover MRSAM isn't good in eastern sector or against chinese

Anonymous said...

MRSAM will come with dule mode IR/radar seeker(in one seeker, not like mica). russia has nothing like this
its fools dream

go to IAI website its has been clearly said there MRSAM is nothing but extended range derby missile and will have only single type of seeker that is active radar seeker

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Anon@4:09PM: Let's get the records straight. For one, the competition for LOH/LUH was manipulated not by Bell Helicopters, but by those allied to Eurocopter. And when, despite Bell's objections, the manipulations continued, Bell had no choice but to withdraw. Regarding the attack helicopter reqmt too, a level playing field was not created due to which Boeing and Bell withdrew. Now, coming to BMD, the DRDO-led effort is aimed at creating an area-coverage system that will see the light of day only five years from now. In the meantime, the PROBABLE competition between the Patriot PAC-3 or the S-400 is aimed more at protecting strategic economic/administrative installations (point defence). Therefore, it is no use comparing the performance parameters of the already deployed PAC-3 and S-400 with those of the MR-SAM or LR-SAM which is still under development. Nor should the PAC-3 or S-400 be compared with the PAD/AAD combination as the former is a point defence BMD system while the latter is being developed as an area-covereage BMD system (something more like the THAAD).

To Harpreet: The Maitri SR-SAM too will have only a single target engagement radar, and will use the same EL/M-2082 airspace surveillance radar as that employed by the MR-SAM/LR-SAM combination.However, if required in a standalone deployment mode for protecting VPs, then the Rohini 3-D CAR can be networked as well.

To Anon@1:28PM: In terms of sensor fusion technologies applied for tri-mode sensors, the Ruskies are definitely a generation behind what's been achieved thus far in Europe, Israel and North America. Now, narrowing it down further, no missile of European or Israeli origin has to date managed to come up with the likes of the on-board tri-mode sensors found on the Joint Common Missile (JCM). In the arena of BMD, both the European and Israeli BMD systems make use of US-owned missile early-warning satellites, a capability that is not yet capable from Russia. The promotional videos of the PAC-3, Aster, Arrow-2/3 and THAAD clearly show this to be the case. Without this vital early-warning component, no missile-based BMD system will be a practical option, no matter how good the interceptor missile and its ground-based target engagement radars may be.

Harpreet said...

To Anon@1:18:00 PM & 1:28:00 PM:
Firstly I lack the patience Prasun has to educate nascent. So please do some serious study on your own. this is my last post in your response.
VHF radars are an ancient technology originating from Maya civilization (kidding!). We don't need to import them. IAF may consider deploying it when our enemy have some serious stealth technology( not cruise missiles, study VHF operation before shooting again). As of now IAF is more interested in retiring such radars from their inventory.
If you had even bothered to read Prasun's and my posts above you wont be bragging about range, ASMs or confusing MR-SAM with Derby. Besides didn't I mention LPI capability of AESA. Do you even know what that is? Derby is a 16cm dia, MR-SAM is 22cm, do you think they can share anything in common? motor? seeker? controls?
IAI website nowhere associates MR-SAM with Derby. I can challenge you to that.
As for duel mode seeker I can quote numerous credible sources but seeing is believing. Isn't it. Note the IR sapphire dome at its nose tip. Yes this is Barak 8 or MR-SAM.

Anonymous said...

hey can any one enlighten me abt d new developments of arjun MBT d mark II versions r thre significant design changes, i mean d strange rectangular turret...

Nava said...

Well, to be fair, the JCM never entered service... The project was terminated in 2007.

Anonymous said...

to prasun

In the arena of BMD, both the European and Israeli BMD systems make use of US-owned missile early-warning satellites, a capability that is not yet capable from Russia
russia has buiding radars with range of 6500 km and has launch more glonass setellites

do israel ,europe,US have 400 km SAM ,i don't think so

MRSAM is severly handicapped against agm88 and kh31p and these missiles have excellent seekers and launching aircraft can fire these missiles well outside the range of MRSAM

so what MFSTAR sees targets at 250km it has to wait till the target reaches the engagement range of MRSAM and that range is just 70km

on the other hand s400 sees its targets at 350km and its got several missiles with various range and can dispatch them according to threat level which can engage those targets at 300km

and those who argue over deployment time the deoplyment time for s400 is just 20 minutes

Anonymous said...

Besides didn't I mention LPI capability of AESA. Do you even know what that is
don't teach me LPI and i know very well aware of that

in 2014-15 when v get this system
pakis will have AWACS MUCH BEFOR that and chinese already have AWACS and AWACS will pick up the loction of deployment of MRSAM from 200km and this iswell outside the engagement range of MRSAM and the accurate position of MRSAM will be revealed to paki fighters,missiles and Lpi will be redenred useless

MRSAM can do nothing except just sit and watch in this scenerio while S400 has various missiles with various range(designed to shoot down rivet joint,AWACS,BOMBERs) will be able to shoot down attacking fighters AWACS

and if MRSAM deployed in eastern sector and chinese will have stealthy fighters before 2020 and MRSAM will be a DUD after service for just 5 years against such threats while s400 is optimised against such threats

on the other hand s400 is built from groud up to counter very low RCS threats and thats why it has VHF nebo aesa AND PESA COMBINATION

and some people think russians r fools that they use 2 radars for
s400 as if they don't know what will be the future threats and MRSAM can do that with only one radars

then they better think that british and french r also fools that they will have 2 aesa radars one is SAMPSON RADAR,OTHER ONE IS SMART L RADAR on type 45 and horizon class frigates and they have 2 aesa radars for counter low RCS threats

moreover S400 is a all in one missile system to address very long range,loong range,medium range,short threats

5 S400 systems r enough to cover entire western border with pakistan ,but on the other hand how many MRSAM system required to cover western border 20-25

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Anon@3:40AM: "MRSAM is severly handicapped against agm88 and kh31p and these missiles have excellent seekers and launching aircraft can fire these missiles well outside the range of what MFSTAR sees targets at 250km it has to wait till the target reaches the engagement range of MRSAM and that range is just 70km.
Through your above argument you're presupposing that that the MR-SAM and MF-STAR will be deployed adjacent to one another. That is not the way MR-SAMs or LR-SAMs are deployed. Today, with mobile troposcatter systems and microwave line-of-sight repeater stations, the SAM launchers can be deployed tens of kilometres away from the target search and target engagement radars. One can rest assured that the MR-SAMs will be deployed in patterns that will effectively neutralise the existing generation of air-launched anti-radiation missiles.

Anonymous said...

to prasun

That is not the way MR-SAMs or LR-SAMs are deployed. Today, with mobile troposcatter systems and microwave line-of-sight repeater stations, the SAM launchers can be deployed tens of kilometres away from the target search and target engagement radars.
awacs can also pick up where is RADAR AND HOW FAR R THE MISSILES LAUNCHERS r from radar and deliver this data to attacking fighters so that they can launch thier PGM from safe distance

but still the precision munitons have longer range than 70km which is engage ment range for MRSAM,so a SAM nowdays has to have minimum range over 120km so as to prevent enemy aircraft to launch PGM to destroy SAM launchers

and in this scenerio S400 system fits perfectly which creates no fly zone of 400km and deny PGM to be launched

drdo should try increase the fuel in AKAASH by removing the warhead and this would allow twice the fuel in akaash missile which will give range of over 50km

i think this is doable in no time and at least they should try this

Anonymous said...

Mr. Sengupta, is India really considering the S-400 or would it prefer a Western system and if so who are the leading contenders ?

Also, in the past, Russian claims of the S-300PMU and S-300V performance when tested by the IAF were proved to be somewhat exaggerated, is this likely to be the case with the S-400 as well ?

Anonymous said...

to prasun

Today, with mobile troposcatter systems and microwave line-of-sight repeater stations, the SAM launchers can be deployed tens of kilometres away from the target search and target engagement radars.
S400 CAN ALSO BE EMPLOYED according to this

i say distance between missile launchers and radars of MRSAM can't be more than 20km,and if u say it can be more than this say 30-50 km then

consider low level threat ,paki awacs pick up MRSAM from 200km (which is well outside range of mrsam which is just 70km) and tell attacking aircraft that MFSTAR AND missiles r 30km apart

MFSTAR's low level detection range is 25 km

and after getting info from awacs pakis fighters go to low level carrying JDAM and other PGM and low level detection range of MFSTAR which is 25 km then MFSTAR doesn't see attacking fighters and if missles launchers r outsiDE THIS 25 km range then PGM destroy missile launchers of MRSAM and if MISSILES r destroyed then launch AGM88 TO KILL MFSTAR radar

so missiles has to be well within the low level detection range of MFSTAR

so even if MFSTAR detect PAKI AWACS far but it can't engage the AWACS because of its limited range of its missiles

Anonymous said...

to prasun

s400 has 2 AESA radars which have 2 different purposes



people argue that y s400 has 2 aesa radars while MRSAM can do all that with one aesa radar then their thinking is totally wrong
3D SURVILLENCE 67N6 Gamma DE AESA RADAR searches large volume of space with lower operating frequency beams also to provide mid course guidance to SAM and similar purpose is done by MF STAR RADAR that is 3D survillence of large volume of space

but nebo aesa searches much smaller volume of space with very high frequncy beams to detect very low RCS objects

and thats y s400 has 2 aesa radars

Anonymous said...

To Anon@6:07:00 AM: Connect the dots.
IAF Integrated(networked) air defense program....missile systems dissociated from specific radar systems....VHF radar basic tech....can integrate to Integrated air defense any time....MR-SAM state of the gen to aegis/aster....difficulty of identifying LPI static target against ground clutter....more than sky clutter....russia lacks new tech....china/iran cant buy western systems....they are not fools you before posting need to hit back just for sake of it....remember you are "Anonymous"

anik said...

hi thr has been no news about the arjun for a long time.. can ne 1 point out the new developments.. significant ones i mean.. are there any design changes.. etc.. etc..

Anonymous said...

they are not fools you are....
shut up

Anonymous said...

s400 also has aesa radars which r more powerful than israeli aesa

difficulty of identifying LPI static target against ground clutter....more than sky clutter....russia lacks new tech
don't teach me LPI

LPI doesn't work anymore against AWACS which can pick up MRSAM DEPLOYMENT from 200km on ground

moreover don't call ur father a fool

Anonymous said...

russia lacks aesa latest tech
only such people u believe this

as if russians doesn't know what is the threat level posed by low RCS objects

MRSAM isn't goingto be inducted before 2014-15

MFSTAR isn't in production its in testing

and by 2014 there is enough time for russians to catch up west in aesa tech both in airborn or ground

by the way bth GAMMAde already has better detection range than mfstar

and only people like u don't even understand simple thing what r the purpose of 2 aesa radars in S400 even if explained compeletly

Prasun K Sengupta said...

To Anon@11:37AM: In the Indian context there's no way any AEW & C platform will be able to pinpoint the exact dispositions of any ground-based SAM network within India's hinterland. The reason is simple: The AEW & C platform will be required to operate at leasdt 150km within friendly airspace, which in turn would limit its surveillance envelope to only 200km at most. Moreover, the target engagement radars like MF-STAR won't be switched on (but would be idling on stand-by mode) until they're alerted about possible engagement scenarios by longer-range airspace surveillance radars like the aerostat-mounted EL/M-2083 or ground-based EL/M-2082. Remember, the networks of the MR-SAM and LR-SAM will all be part of a hierarchical air defence network, rather than being standalone systems.

To Anon@1:18PM: All this debate about comparing the MR-SAM/LR-SAM combination with the S-400 Triumf is still premature for the simple reason that whatever performance parameters of the MF-STAR are being quoted for now apply only to the shipborne variant. Those for the land-based variant won't be identical for sure, but will be enhanced for obvious reasons. Only when such parameters are revealed by IAI/ELTA and the DRDO will be it possible to do an objective comparison, not until then. Therefore, let us all kindly hold our horses until then.

Anonymous said...

The AEW & C platform will be required to operate at leasdt 150km within friendly airspace, which in turn would limit its surveillance envelope to only 200km at most
if this is true then s400 can destroy paki awacs 150km inside paki territory while itself being in 200km inside indian territory

moreover paki AWACS is also AN AESA radar with very good against jamming and very good to clear out clutter both on ground and in air and very good against LPI of ground based radars

and some people argue to clear out the clutter they muSt know that S400 also uses aesa radars one is
3D survillence aesa radar able to clear out clutter and able to provide mid course guidance to missiles and other one is VHF aesa and both of these have differet purpose

MFSTAR is also a 3D survillence radar like GAMMA DE radar means both r used to cover large volume of space and yes high speed computer tech also available to russians as well

while VHF aesa will cover much less volume of space and use very high frequency beams to detect very LOW rcs object and this will be done in parallel with 3D GAMMA DE radar .so both radar will work simultaneously and high spped processing tech also available to russian t oclear out clutter and this increases the survivability many folds against future or current LOW RCS objects AND THIS IS VERY TRUE and russians have taken care of this very well
and thats y s400 has 2 aesa radar and

while MFSTAR is more like 3D survillence radar to cover large space of volume and it can't do the job of VHF AESA and thats y
s400 has 2 aesa radars

and those who talk of range of s400 doesn't matter then i can say we better retire r77 missiles and start inductuing derby air to air missiles against paki aim120c ,so aim120c has better range than derby and everyone has no objectyion over this
and if range of missiles matters here then range of SAM SYSTEMS also matters and in this s400 beats MRSAM,LRSAM

just consider for a moment if pakis have s400 system or vise versa then this system creates no fly zone of 200km inside indian territory while itself being in 200 km inside paki territory ,our su30,or western MRCA WITH MUCH VAUNTED aesa radars don't even make it to paki border ,along with phalcon aewacs,prithvi don't make it to there

Anonymous said...

Prasun, please let us have little more fun. This is last. Promise!

To Anon@9:52:00 AM & 10:04:00 AM:
Papa, please tell us the difference between (VHF, L band, S band and X band) AESA. Why they are so technologically different? Why S400 is still using L band AESA which uncle Sam used 20 years ago? Why is higher frequency(S,X) so important for discrimination and identification, papa?

What part of Integrated Air Defense and its ability to absorb new radars you didn't understand? Why is the IAF retiring VHF radars that they have?

How easy is it for an AWAC to differentiate a LPI AESA radar (which can hide its emission in background microwave noise) from Pappu's truck and 1.2 million other vehicles in its surroundings? What if the radar is not exposed like tanks in a desert or jungle where there is nothing else to confuse with?
Please enlighten us Papa.

Anonymous said...

Why S400 is still using L band AESA which uncle Sam used 20 years ago
only people like u think that whatever US or israel makes better than russian system

and then y uncle sam still uses PESA radars in aegis and patriot systems

as ther is no tech which is inferrior and irbis e proved it against apg79,80,rbe2 aesa none of these aesa radars detect 0.01 meter square target at 90km let alone dicrimante the target and same thing applies to ground based systems

and those radars used in S400 r high powered radars not the old VHF ones u r thinking of

moreover to dtect LPI radar on ground u should know that there will SAM which will be exposed to AWACS and AWACS has ability to discriminate SAM trucks and pappu's trucks

good night

Pierre Zorin said...

I know Christmas is far away but here's a couple of wishes in advance anyway! 1)I wish someone would be able to invent an Anonymous tracker or PAIT (Pinpoint Anon Identification Technology) so the need to be "Anonymous" is gotten rid off.2)Unless people are sending TXT via SMS I wish they wrote clear English instead of the "y" 'btw" "n e 1" etc. Remember these are wishes no need to hide behind Anon and start firing assbuster missiles.

Anonymous said...

To Anon@2:25:00 PM: MR-SAM truck look even more like Pappu's truck or a dumper.

Aegis AN/SPY-1 (PESA) is being succeeded by The Dual Band Radar (DBR) which combines the functionality of the X-Band AN/SPY-3 AESA Multi-Function Radar with that of an S-Band AESA Volume Search Radar (VSR).
X-band advantages include superior low-altitude propagation effects, narrow beam width for best tracking accuracy, widest frequency bandwidth for effective target discrimination.
S-band advantages include a high-power aperture for effective search functionality, acceptable propagation loss regardless of weather, and sufficiently small beam width to resolve and track targets accurately.
Both bands are capable of providing effective uplink/ downlink capabilities to interface seamlessly with the ship’s surface-to-air missile systems.

EL/M-2248 (S band AESA), also known as Multi-Function Search and Target Acquisition Radar (MF-STAR) employs multi-beam and robust ECCM techniques to extract fast, low RCS targets from complex clutter and jamming environments (better than L band). The system can operate in multiple functions simultaneously, delivering high-quality situation picture (volume air search, surface search), supporting offensive weapons (AShM, ship guns), while performing self-defense(AD missile and guns fire control).
MF-STAR Supports different operating modes of missile systems including mid-course guidance of active/semi-active anti-air missiles and Illumination enslavement for semi-active missiles, thus making dedicated guidance radar systems redundant. Also incorporates is an automatic splash detection and measurement, to support naval gunnery in maritime security and close-in defense roles.

S band AESA tech is one generation ahead of L band AESA while X band AESA is two generations ahead.

VHF AESA is just a trip wire and will be acquired and integrated to IAD when IAF thinks it needs it.
Don't oversimplify radar capability with notional figures of range and resolution.
Please dont take offense. This was a fruitful discussion.

To Pierre Zorin: Point taken note of. Apologies.

Anonymous said...

how u know all this stuff prasun sengupta?

venky said...

prasun da! if we have so many anon radar experts lutking in India , how is that we screwed up LCA MMR program so badly!

Anonymous said...

hey prasun

which firgatE design france has offered for P17A

secondly india going for more frigates from russia i want to know that those frigates gorshkov class which russia offered to india,i think these frigates also have 4 faced radar like german saschen class firgates

Anonymous said...

Don't oversimplify radar capability with notional figures of range and resolution
talking of land bases MRSAM

from rann of kutch to jammu along pakis borders it is very difficult to hide SAM especially in punjab there r farming fields,and runn of kutch nothing except salt production ,rajasthan border with pakistan is whole desert

people say range of SAM missiles doesn't matter ,so y does range matters in air to air missiles

s400's GAMMA DE radar detects
1^ square target at 400km at 40km altitude and ballistic missiles have much bigger RCS so they can be detected at more distance and as soon as it see incoming missiles at that range it can dispatch its with 400km range missiles

what LRSAM,MRSAM will till those incoming missiles reach its engage ment range that is 70km also those missiles must come down to 20km altitude which is the operating altitude of MRSASM

and LPI of MFSTAR doesn't matter to be detected by PAKI AWACS which generates SAR image and this SAR image is very clear especially if the area is plain and very easy to differentiate even between truck and a jeep let alone detecting SAM deployment

Anonymous said...

as if russinas don't know what is theat posed by low RCS objects and don't know how to design SAM systems but hier missiles have proved themselves over the years

some people think that
gamma de radar which operats in L BAND(SAMRT L RADAR IS ALSO L BAND)with integrated IFF which can detect targets at 400km able provide mid course guidance to 400km missiles TO KILL BOMBERS,JSTARS,AWACS can't even discriminate and clear out clutter even at 100km just rubbish

if prasun say MRSAM can't be compared to S400 then he should know s400 also has medium range missiles as well

if prasun say missiles can be tens of km from radar than i can say they can't be outside the low level detection range of radar

and if this is true then what is need for MRSAM,

akaash can be placed tens of km form 3D CAR radar moreover each akaash battery has its own rajendra radar so this will be well outside the low level detection range of 3D CAR RADAR but each akaash battery has its own rajendra radar for low level detection

so the range of akaash can be increased to many kilometers and same can be done with S400 which increases its range many folds and hence need much less numbers

Anonymous said...

to prasun k sengupta

any idea how does the jamming pods on f18 growler compared to elta8222 jamming pods

any idea

Anonymous said...

and there is no technology which even gets inferior example irbis e radar

although irbis e radar is PESA 30 years old tech but it still beats
apg79,80,81,63(v2),rbe2aesa,amsar AESA radars

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