Friday, December 24, 2010

COLUMN: An IAF View Of The FGFA Partnership


The following column, exclusive to Livefist, is by a senior IAF officer, who for obvious reasons, cannot be named. I sought his views on the FGFA agreement and have with a measure of effort persuaded him to give Livefist his views on the programme in his own words. The following piece is the result. The views here are his own, and written in his capacity as an officer of the Indian Air Force. As a matter of detail, he has permitted me to mention here that he is a fighter pilot who has been involved in two major Indo-Russian aircraft programmes in the 1990s. He has also permitted me to proofread his piece but only for purposes of clarity and continuity. His piece, in full:

At the outset, it should be clear to all concerned, especially the Indian taxpayer, that this "mother of all aircraft programmes", i.e. the agreement between India and Russia to jointly develop and manufacture an advanced fifth generation fighter aircraft (FGFA) will deliver a formidable combat platform. While all development projects have their attendant hurdles, delays and overruns, we as a nation must be sure that the end result meets all performance parameters. As of now, there is no reason to believe that there will be any undue problems in the programme.

However, it is the idea that the FGFA is a "joint design and development programme" that is troubling to many in the IAF who have dealt with all parties concerned, i.e. Hindustan Aeronautics, Sukhoi Design Bureau (SDB), UAC and ROE. Before proceeding to the ground realities, let us first understand what the FGFA is being projected to offer India over and above the material delivery of a combat platform. It is being projected as a partnership between India and Russia, where both sides will co-design, co-develop, co-engineer and co-manufacture the aircraft. The idea is also that in the course of the programme, HAL's design inputs to the FGFA will spin-off and accrue into an indigenous capability to build next generation combat platforms using strictly in-house resources. There are several other projected benefits of the programme, but these two will suffice for the purpose of this article.

Currently, the SDB has designed three prototypes (1 flying, 2 ground testbed platforms) which are of single cockpit (i.e. T-50) configuration. The idea of the preliminary design contract signed on December 21 is that HAL will be the design partner for the twin-seat variant of the aircraft. Some facts: The fact that the Russians are now testing the single-seat T-50/PAK FA does not mean that they do not have the necessary design data to fabricate a twin-seat/trainer platform. In fact, it is just the opposite. Remember that the PAK FA programme was initiated in the late 1980s, which means the standard approach of the time was to build aircraft along with a mandatory trainer variant for conversion training as well as squadron service, as has been the standard practice with Soviet aircraft engineering. Furthermore, it is a known fact in the IAF that the SDB has, in a layperson's terms, a blueprint to fabricate a twin-seat version of the T-50. If so, then the purported design inputs being offered from India's side are worth pausing to think about. What are these design inputs? Are they really design inputs?

Since 2006, ever since HAL had expressed its keenness to co-implement the IAF's custom specifications in the new platform, there has been a debate between the definition of design input and specification/modification input. Let us be clear that the T-50 prototype that is currently flying is the work of years of design engineers from one of the most skilled design bureaus of the former Soviet. This is not suggest that HAL does not have any design strengths, but merely to say that in this particular programme, the space for any inputs simply does not exist. In simple words, even if HAL is partnering in the twin-seat version, their job will involve no/negligible inputs as far as airframe is concerned. A common perception that needs to be corrected is that adding Indian avionics, BEL radar receiver, DRDO weapon systems or composite control surface elements constitutes "design input". It does not. That falls in the realm of custom modification which is basically what IAF/HAL had undertaken with the Su-30 programme in late 1990s. However, in all fairness it must be said that the scope for composites in the airframe holds some innovative possibilities from Indian laboratories. Be that as it may, the design of the platform will not be changed.

When the preliminary design of the T-50 was frozen some years ago, the IAF provided requested inputs on platform preference. Our inputs basically fell in four categories, i.e. two-pilot configuration, custom sensors/avionics, options for turbofan engine and weapon systems. Additionally, the IAF was of the view that it would be desirable to have a lower empty weight, a parameter which would to some degree be met with composites, and for which work has already begun by SDB. While the IAF team tasked with studying the platform/programme proposal was quite satisfied with the basic design, the above four parameters were crucial for our own future operations and perspective planning. The requirements were duly endorsed at all levels and met with the concurrence of HAL engineers. As far as the IAF is concerned, HAL will not be a design partner in the FGFA programme. For IAF purposes in the project, HAL is a integration/workshare partner that will co-inspect the joint modification study and execute in conjunction with SDB/Irkut/ROE. None of these areas justify the prestigious title of "design and development partner".

Finally, the FGFA will be a very competitive platform for IAF, and its first stealth aircraft. And India's involvement even at this late stage in the programme is still desirable to just being a customer like in the case of all other platforms barring Su-30 (though in the last also, contribution has not helped us keep cost down). There should be no doubts about the platform itself.

But to project this as an landmark project that has created history with great dividends for India is too far fetched. HAL is our partner at the best and worst of times. And it is important to remember that the way the FGFA programme is being projected today is as much the play of the Russian side as it is for sections within the Indian defence setup. The Russians have been reliable friends for decades, but it would be imprudent to imagine that there is any element of philanthropy in their dealings with India. If communications between IAF and ROE were ever declassified (like the Wikileaks, maybe some day!), the nation would have quite a different picture of how it is to deal with the Russians. Still, that does not take away from the value of their partnership. Ultimately, the FGFA programme, in my view, is no different from most of the other so-called joint programmes we have with Russia, including the Su-30 MKI.

To conclude, a few questions which are worth considering: As a "joint D&D partner", will HAL be able to devlop and deliver India's next generation fighter aircraft all by itself? Is India's involvement in the FGFA programme simply as a monetary investor?

88 comments :

cybersurg said...

A nice realistic article. Typical of a serving officer to write his view of reality without holding a chip on his shoulder to indicate some bias against some entity or some segment of readership.

Now if military journalism could take a leaf out of this - we would have the best in the world. :)

Aditya said...

So even though Indian aerospace industries will be privy to the most in-depth info regarding the PAK-FA/FGFA, apart from prospective contributions to airframe composites and customization, they won't really play a major role in the design and development? In that case, this programme is obviously intended to provide them with enough experience to develop indigenously the next generation of fighters, should that time ever come around. Looking at this historically, that seems to have been their modus operandi for the past 50 years.

Anonymous said...

oops..so much for joint development..Russian, for that matter no one is gonna tell us how to design planes...If they do who will they sell planes to.. pretty simple...

Our Netas/Babu/Defence top brass are biggest obstacle in developing indigenous capabilities...they can spend 10's billions of dollars on CWG...pocket billions for 2G spectrum...but for R&D funding they will cite that they have other priorities..sorry state of affairs.. I hope some day all this will change, only I don't have faintest idea when..

Anonymous said...

1. Do we get a share, if PAK-FA stealth is exported to a third country? like BrahMos cooperation. If yes, then this deal is worth it.

2. India can also stop Russia from exporting this advanced fighter to China, even though, they have their own program.

3. Unnecessary worry, because, PAK-FA stealth deal is not going to go against AMCA (indigenous stealth).

4. We are not learning anything new from this deal, is that what IAF person is claiming?

It is not the purpose of the deal. We have to induct stealth fighters, regardless of what we learn for our AMCA program.

5. AMCA will be eventually inducted.

Kartik said...

Would really appreciate it if you could get the gentleman who wrote this article to write about the Tejas and the AMCA and the IAF perspective on both. Would give some insights into what the IAF thinks about Tejas Mk1 and the future Mk2 and the IAF's thoughts and expectations on the AMCA and how it fits into the IAF's orbat.

Ram said...

"Ultimately, the FGFA programme, in my view, is no different from most of the other so-called joint programmes we have with Russia, including the Su-30 MKI." This in itself is statement that personifies the good and fruitful relationship which India always had with Russia. One more example could be the Brahmos JV. Ultimately it is to be seen that T-50 is more than a match to the F35 or the F22.

Anonymous said...

I have a very dumb question. I am researcher, working in the area of computer science. It is a standard practice, among the computer science research community to start with a given platform and then suggest improvements/changes/optimizations and then measure its worth.

I agree FGFA is already a complete platform. My question is: Cant this platform be used as an experimental test-bed to start making delta changes - some of which can be incorporated into AMCA or any other platform we build in the future. Sorry, if the question is too lame. But please enlighten me about aeronautics research.

BigLulli said...

Lo and behold! so what this gentleman is saying in a nutshell, this is India's "JF-17" programme!

Chota input, burree baat! :D

Anonymous said...

HAL plz dont let us down this time....we know that we are spending money like water...but wen a minister can do a scam worth of Lakhs of crores there is no wrong in spending the same amount of money....If anyone from HAL is reading my comment if possible plz ask ur Russian counterpart to reduce the front part of the PAK AF same wat they did with SU-27 to SU-30...so it would elegant...I wish we had many companies like HAL...so that there would be competition...THEY have 7 projects in hand now TEJAS, Naval Tejas, Trainer Tejas, NAl Saras, IJT Sitara, AMCA, FGFA...no were in the world u can see this...PLZ govt Babus establish sum other companies....

Anonymous said...

Few questions.

1. Will it be sold to china by Russia.

2. Will Russia give us entire technology.

3. Is plasma Stealth true.

4. Reports says that Indian version (twin cockpit) increases RCS.

Ben - Yours truly said...

The IAF is an organisation that never built within itself an institution with the capability to design airframes or atleast build technology demonstrators of subsystems. It doesn't have the capability to distinguish a true blue field joint venture, two projects built from a common basic layout or a user made modification on an ad hoc basis from one another. the role of the User in the development of a weapons system is the prominent one, which is something this service has never realised. The FGFA and PAK FA will differ from one another the way lockheed martin F-16 and mitshibishi F-2 differ from one another. It depends on the individual's association with industry, experience and intellectual capacity to arrive at a logical conclusion before passing judgement on HAL and about Russian-Indian joint venture.

Vinay Kumar P said...

Dear Anonymous writer,

Very valid questions raised. I agree few of them but, please have a look a the track record of the development of ADA/HAL. First flight of tejas takes place in 2001 and there are only 5 - 6 prototypes build(with due respects to people involved in the development of tejas. I know that they were trying to build was a complex program.)
Now the question before us is to choose the best among the worst. Even though we are only the monetary investor, we have to extract more knowledge from the Russians regarding the stealth technology. Even if Russia went a head to developed this bird alone, there wont be any doubt that it would offer it for sale to INDIA and our great country has to pay a premium to buy it from its so called close friend. Even you would also agree that the price would be more that what is being is projected to be the final cost($100million).

Guru said...

Mr Anonymous IAF Officer,

Very well written article which clearly defines the situation at hand. I am sure even the Russians will whole-heartedly agree with your observations.

I do not have the capacity to answer your very relevant questions so I will not warrant a guess.

As a nation however, we need the protection and the strength a platform like the FGFA will provide. I do not think there is any debate on that point. Also, we don't have the technical competency to produce a 5th Gen Fighter nor are we being offered a developing platform (albeit an almost ready
platform) by any other country which possesses a 5th Gen Fighter.

So the core question is or should be if the FGFA is not the platform which would be a backbone of the IAF AND the best available choice at the present juncture?

This is the crucial question and we need to answer that before entering this "mother of all deals". Unfortunately you do not throw some light on this aspect of the FGFA deal.

Regarding HAL's whitewash on joint D&D Partner-Tonnes of newsprint have been dedicated to HAL's "achievements" so I don't think anyone on this forum can add what a reasonably intelligent Indian defence enthusiast does not know. But to be fair to HAL, Aviation has not been a historical high focus area for India since Independence (Like constructing dams for example) and I am sure there was logic behind that choice.

Come to think of it-After the recent success of the Brahmos test firing, folks were understandably gung-ho about Indian Aerospace R&D capabilities whereas the only Indian contribution to the P-800 Oniks-Brahmos transformation was a change in fuel and maneuvering. However the statements issues by the babus were almost like they delivered it from scratch.

I guess this is the way we will do stuff till Govt organizations run the defence industry.

joydeep ghosh said...

Shiv

i think this IAF pilot has hit the last nail in the coffin, of so called 'JOINT DESIGN AND DEVELOPMENT'project, which is actually not what it is. What matters is that can we get FGFA for lesser price.

Awaiting your inputs

Joydeep Ghosh

Anonymous said...

IF one is really serious about indigenous capability,policy changes have to be made to enlarge the scope of foreign investments,the private sector and break the monopoly of HAL.Unless new players ,with a hope of long term support and profit come in, such debates are meaningless.Our first priority must be to get the aircraft.Ego issue on 'are we only putting in the money' will arise only if we have and develop our own indigenous capability on a wider scale.Indian Naval ship building could a process to emulate where indigenous capability is actually there.How efficiently that is being used is of-course another matter.

DJ said...

It seems like an order for these planes rather than joint development. Might as well go for JSF

S2 said...

its a very good read...ok so now we realise this is not the joint partnership thing ppl are saying it out to be...but i still support this venture as long as india can gain expertise out of it & implement it on the AMCA...which i got a hint of from reading this...

Anonymous said...

Very interesting and revealing note.

However given the number of typos and grammatical mistakes still visible Shiv you have clearly not held up your end of the bargain!

Anonymous said...

Shiv,
You will agree that there is nothing in the article that you did not know about before. You have given space to one of the parties involved. Now find another person who will give the rationale for the government decision.

Anonymous said...

This article vindicates what I have been harping on that it is nothing more than highly expensive and hyped up redux of Su30MKI project.
The point to consider is that India is being asked to cough out 5 billion$s by Russia for "joint development", when it is amply clear that there is no scope for "joint development". It is merely modification of Pakfa to Indian specifications.
We are going to gain next to nothing from this "joint development" as the A/c is now complete.
Moot point is should India pay 5 billion $s just for modification of an A/c?
It seems like another Arjun/T90 fiasco, where the Ruskies had bribed our babu-neta-sipahis to kill the Arjun tank and induct an inferior souped up T72 aka T90 in 1000s. Who is the real enemy of India? China, Pakistan or these same people who have taken pledge to serve and defend the nation whereas in practice they r selling our country for some money or in some cases an old woman?

Anonymous said...

Rationale for the govt decision is they have been paid kickbacks upto their nose. Recent spate of several multi billion $ scams will bear this out.
We need to look at the way this country is governed. Is a massive central rule really working, or it is the biggest bottleneck that is perpetuating a kleptocracy in the name of democracy? This monopoly by "central Govt" must be broken and power to be devolved to the states and panchayats. This is the only way to curb such massive institutionalized corruption.

Anonymous said...

The questions at the end of article are blows below the belt. Shiv, this is developing into standard practice for the services, who know that similar thing is not done by HAL, DRDO, MoD in public fora. Extremely regrettable.

Anonymous said...

Before going where Angels fear to tread, we need to ask ourselves how 5th Gen is Pakfa? Has Russia any demonstrated capability in this area? Or we are being taken for a big ride particularly when you consider massive failures in this field from the only country which has demonstrated some capability in this area.
USA's F117 was grounded and scrapped after one was shot down in Yugoslavia. F35 inspite of having multi nation cooperation, is having teething problems and no where near the original claims. Both Japan and Australia have expressed their reservations with F35. Several countries are now having 2nd thoughts about F35. They are toying with further developing their 4.5 jets which as per some claims are almost as good as F35 or even better.
Regarding F22, why USA capped it's production? They are citing cost as the reason for curtailing it's production. How far is this claim true? Is the real reason something to do with F22s failure to live upto expectations?
Impression of Pakfa and F22 is based on tall claims by their respective countries as no one has ever had the opportunity to really check their capabilities.
Should we be paying 5 billion $s (as of now) just for modification of any existing unproven system or simply buy them after the final product is rolled out with some Indian specifications?
It's apparent hardly any learning will accrue from this project as shape of A/c is crux to stealth design. In this case it has already been frozen.

Anonymous said...

shiv....i was thinking this article would reduce our doubts....but it is creating much more questions than answers....it would be better to catch hold of a person from HAL instead to answer both our and IAF officers questions.....!!!

Prabhu said...

So my doubt is the following
1.Does Fifth generation mean only visual/radar stealth and super-cruise
2.What about sensor fusion and other intelligent controls
3.what about radar/other electronics/display etc which goes into it
4.My understanding on PAKFA is a air-superiority fighter whereas FGFA is a Multi-role fighter what is that which is going to be added to it

Cheers

Prabhu.G

Rahul Devnath said...

Its a clear argument by AVM/Air Marshal Anonymous. A known fact that with a flying prototype of T-50 and even years of R&D with S-37 and Mig-1.44, there's hardly any room for HAL's involvement in FGFA. For the record how many aircrafts have HAL anyway designed, without the assistance of a foreign partner. However a joint development, will at least, should relive India of limited license of a particular aircraft type. And in the long term, should enable HAL to gain more expertise, modify the future variants of FGFA as well bring out more and better aircrafts with shared technologies, especially MCA, yet that depends on the nature of the deal.

Ben - Yours truly said...

Most probably FGFA will be derived from a basic two-seat trainer version drawings of Sukoi T-50 prototype re- designed by 40 HAL engineers stationed in Russia in a russian aircraft design institute like TsAGI to refect on the more stringent specifications of stealth for IAF, while the Russian model will be a single seater perhaps its composite skins, mission computers, navigation aids and several other sub systems could be supplied by the Indian side whose lead contractor is HAL just like the lead contractor of Russian side is Sukoi design bureau.

In developing subsystems, just because a technology demonstrator can be built by an experienced developer doesn't mean its going for production the very next day, several copies of the same have to be made and tested for 100s of hours for adherence to specifications and be certified if it performs to the user's specifications on performance parameters, life expectancy etc. All these process involve money money money, for which India is commiting $ 6 billion. Hence the Intellectual property rights will be soley owned by Indian government e.g exclusive two-seat FGFA design, the mission computers, composite skins. Sukoi would licence these components developed by India and manufacture it in a russian factory and pay royalties. The Russian side would be responsibe for overall PAK FA airframe design & development, Engine (D&D) and AESA (D&D), these will take the $ 6 billion from the russian side whose IPR will remain with Russian government and HAL will Licence produce it in India and pay Royalties.
For every Russian built PAK FA single seater 30% of value will be Indian comonents for which sukoi will pay Indian government Royalties, Every FGFA 50% by value would be Russian including AESA radar and Engine, for which HAL will pay royalties. The airframe would be copyright of both countries thats why the skewed workshare on both versions.
Since Russia and India are not contiguous nations like EU so assembly and perhaps overtime production too of all the aircraft components may be done at the respective countries within the ambit of a shared IPR. This might be necessary for Indian needs to avoid dependance on shipments from Russia during wartime. But it kinda leaves the door open for china to replace all Indian designed units with its own J-xx developed subsystems and procure single-seat PAKFA chinese variant. Still we have to just take Russia's word for that.
"exported to third friendly countries".

Kunal said...

Shiv,

An excellent, candid, unbiased assessment of the actual situation. A very well written piece indeed and I am glad the author did not allow editing the original. It lays threadbare the reality in perspective. A downright practical, hands-on approach.

Shiv - would indeed be grateful and delighted if you could get similar assessments about TEJAS and AMCA/NGFA (also requested by someone else above) from some similarly involved senior officer n a gentleman of the IAF.

VJ said...

If PAK FA T-50 is sold to China then our tax money is definitely wasted.

chaffandflare.blogspot.com said...

ask yourself guys !ask IAF ,ASK HAL,ASK GOI ,do they have capability to build a 5gen aircraft without any help and inputs? Do we have so calld advance aerospace industry like in russia,europe or usa ? Are we capable to built 5gen without even TD FLYING LIKE SU47 OR MIG 1.44 ? The answer is Big NO ,BEGGERS CANT BE CHOOSER . Either you participate in Pak fa or get lost ,there are many to invest like algeria,brazil even china.. We should feel lucky that atleast we are going to learn something from project atleast 20% of Fgfa. Can amerika allow us to part like russia in their F 35 programe ? Ummm oh!hek we need your money for this project nt ur inputs and take watevr we giving you..

Anonymous said...

Just by hammering few nuts and bolts and making an A/C doesn't mean that you have mastered the art of building fighter jets. We have been doing the same thing in HAL in the name of "license production" and hardly learn't anything.

Real learning takes place when you design an A/C where you factor in all the laws of science to give u the perfect A/C.

Wrt PakFa of FGFA, this stage is already over. Therefore joining at this late stage and paying 5 billion $+ for "joint development" is ridiculous and reeks of ulterior motives.

It would still have made sense if we had inked the deal at 30 billion$ for 250 or 300 jets. This is not the case, we will be shelling out the market price of the A/C at a future date which will be much higher than it's current estimate of 100 million$.
In a nutshell by partnering in "joint development" we are doing nothing apart from bankrolling Russia for design and development of their 5th Gen fighter.

My take on this matter is we must give our specifications and let Russia incorporate the same in the jet. It also makes no sense to add two pilots to a 5th Gen fighter. Adding another pilot will seriously compromise the capabilities of the A/C. In 5thGen jets the plane literally flies by itself therefore doing away with the need for 2nd pilot. Adding another pilot also increases the profile of the A/c apart from increasing the overall weight which could have been taken up with additional systems or armaments.
Hence no "joint development". Let us purchase the final product with complete ToT as in MMRCA.

Anonymous said...

Why are we behaving as if this is a classified secret which has come out? Any one watching the PAK-FA would come to such a conclusion.

What the officer has written is very true and relevant. And as usual the "Indian (internet) public" see a conspiracy theory.

As the officer said, it may be wrong to call it "Design & Development" and we may giving lot of money for it. But then can any one give me a alternative choice?

Who in this world would want to share their latest tech with India without India providing billions of dollars? What is the conspiracy theory in this? Just like SU-30 program is such a success because we provided our cash for major modifications and learn a lot in the process, PAK-FA will also need to be provided to learn the concepts like Stealth and latest in avionics.

The government(and tax payers) job is provide money for the what our forces want. Now they have it. It is time now IAF get on the back of HAL and squeeze every penny out of the project.

There is no point in taking pot shots on HAL. If we dont have a technology, let IAF DEMAND that be made in house and HAL SHOULD do it.

Let IAF keep in mind their decision should take into consideration getting the nation a technology base and their operational needs. A balanced approach is needed.

The objective should be attain a major leap in warfare capabilities compared what our adversary face and form the logistics chain for future operations.

It's time we Indians stop complaining.

-Nit

ArkAngel said...

Nothing in here i havent heard discussed before.

Anonymous said...

Yawn.... very boring analysis

Anonymous said...

joint DEVELOPMENT or not.... get this baby fighting in time... it wont matter who flogged the chinese an indian jet or a russo jet... thats the bottomline

Anonymous said...

Concurrent with the PAK FA let the indegenious MRCA evolve as the CHI FA. Then the money will have been well worth the effort.

Anonymous said...

What is the problem here. The title "Joint Design & Development" or the fact that we will be buying 300 FGFA which will have atleast N% indian stuff + licence production or that we should have bought F-22/35 with which comes no ToT, Licence production, % in export, say in Exports....

parvas24 said...

I have heard about plasma stealth from Russians ... is it practicable ? for the FGFA ?

parvas24 said...

When the US government wanted to make the F 35 ... they had two bidders ... Boeing and Lockheed Martin.... both prototypes flew and were analysed by the USAF ... finally after long negotiations they settled for the Prototype offered by Lockheed Martin .... I believe the defence misnitry got kickbacks from Lockheed Martin as well to secure their bid ... The prototype F35 made by Boeing went into cold storage ... If India goes ahead and gets the F/A 18 for the IAF it will be worthwhile to persuade Boeing to get the blueprint and research of the aircraft they had made - the original F35 prototype which can be refined and integrated into our FGFA nad AMCA programs .... Are you listening Mr. Shiv Aroor?

cybersurg said...

Without in any way denying or contradicting what the IAF officer has written, I would like to point out "design inputs" from India for Russian equipment that has increased the safety and or efficacy of the item.

The Mig 21 got a gun (the famous GSh 23) because of Indian design inputs. The workhore An 32 got its "hot and high" performance because of Indian design inputs.

The Su 30 MKI is an effective two seat fighter because of design input from India. The data bus that an aircraft has needs to be compatible with Indian avionics and left to itself Russia is hardly likely to design an aircraft to meet the needs of Indian avionics and non Russian weapons systems.

Finally India has far more experience than Russia in tropicalizing Russian stuff. Early experiences like an exploding naval gun because Arctic Russian grade lubricants ran like water in the Indian ocean have taught Indians what India needs. These will have to be vital inputs into any collaboration with Russia.

Finally the experience of thousands of man hours of air force technicians in Air Force repair depots making oddball Russian stuff that would not come from russia (Such as MiG 21 brake pads and Mig 27 canopies) has taught us that involvement at the design stage can force the Russians to use a standard size bearing or rubber gasket that is made in Noida rather than an odd size made in Siberia or Ukraine.

The "collaboration" is not to be sniffed at except by the completely ignorant.

There is a story of how a vital Indian design change in the Jaguar was incorporated into British Jags but India gets no credit because the contact details specify that. Such things can be avoided by design stage collboration.

Anonymous said...

A disappointing article from the officer. Reading his article, I wondered if the IAF is the Indian Air Force or the air force of some other third country that happens to be, to his great misfortune, hosted in India and tasked with defending us lowly Indians.

The article reflects a profound lack of faith in indigenous R&D capabilities. Perhaps DRDO/HAL's track record has a lot to do with it too. But what is more serious is the officer's condescending attitude towards the nation's defense industry that seems endemic and systemic in the IAF, if you read between the lines.

Anonymous said...

So We are not going to get much from Russian 5G.

IAF dont want DRDO aircraft.

Which leaves us with US 5G.

Got it.

Anonymous said...

Hal should try to build amca using paf-ka. That way amca can be indigenous one and also buy t50 to keep Russians happy. We have the tech to develop composites, sensor suite for our requirements, we need a good engine and low RCs airframe...... Also make sure russia can't sell to countries without Indian consent...

Anonymous said...

A lot of bitching bottom line is that are we capable to build a 5g plane we are still struggling with Tejas,while criticism is most welcome we need to take into account the obsolescence of the IAF in the coming years.

So JV or not a 5G is going to helpful in the coming years

Anonymous said...

@Chaff n flare,

ask yourself why China shied away from Pakfa? They wisely bought the 80% complete brand new Varyag for mere 20 million$s whereas we bought a rusty mothballed missile cruiser cum helicopter carrier masquerading as Aircraft Carrier for more than 2 billion$s.

The point is are we going to learn anything at this late stage? Why pay 5 billion$s additionally just to modify a jet as per Indian requirements? Why is IAF so cynical to join Pakfa program from the very beginning? It seems our babus and netas are upto some mischief again.

Mr. Ra said...

Unfortunately India does not have any other option. They have to get a 5th Gen fighter and this is it.

Even if Russia had a sound economy like America, then it would have perhaps preferred no to sell these aircrafts to India.

Avi said...

Even if India were just a monetary investor, will we own the IP rights on technologies developed using our money.If only we Indians could realise the power of money. We're still new to the concept of spending big money, it's probably why it could be a while before we learn to extract value out every paise that we're spending. (We probably need a marwari, sindhi or a gujarati defence minister.)

Anonymous said...

UMMM I dont thin $30 bil is for development alone its cost for development and the projected no of a/c at projected prices. Even if this a/c project is modulled on su 30 mki I think its worth it. There is going to be ToT. I think Indians are good at bargaining and I have a feeling they may squeeze the last bit possible out of this. Money is less important than technology I feel. An if 500 a/c are going to be sold to other countries with profits shared along with setup of manufacturing capabilities in India, I think that would be a step further. Lets wait and watch. At those who doubt Russian capabilities, remember they made Mig 21s which are potent till today, Sukhois 30s and Mig 25s

Max said...

I love all the articles that claim what FGFA will turn out to be. Typical media trying to make a buck.

Russian sourses on the same matter claim that FGFA will be developed separately from T-50 PAK-FA/MI. That was said by Russian defence ministry and Sukhoi. But the lessons learnt from T-50 will be used and airframe will feature some similarities with T-50. FGFA has been oriented for export from the beginning and will be suitably degraded from Indian version.

What sort of design input did you people expect? Airframe stealth shaping? Engine design? Radar? Those were never done by India and thus they will not be making it although they might learn how to. India is good with electronics, computers, some materials and THAT is what they'll insert into the completed project which is tailored to India first and foremost. What India is CAPABLE of making for themselves that will make. You can't expect such young aerospace industry with limited experience to make large contributions to such complex project. Russians were always reliable and never sanctioned use of its weapons no matter what. Wanna try F-35? If during the war it will get "switched off" like the Iraqi systems during Gulf War then its a 130 million dollar plane lost because "friends" from US decided to stop war. Go ahead and get that plane thats already obsolete. Considering that Russians will pretty much teach Indians how to make such complex systems - 5 billion dollars is a long term investment. Who else is going to teach you and give you full freedom of use?

To those claiming T-90 inferior to Arjun - open your eyes. India has agreed for certain spec and got it. Missiles that T-90 can fire and EO countermeasures seem to be missing which are ultimately the main advantages of T-90. Arjun is homologation of foreign parts: Cannon is english, engine is german, some other key parts foreign as well. At least T-90 is now completely made in India and Russia did a full tech transfer. Arjuns parts are imported. Also arjun is too heavy anyway for non-desert warfare. Full Russian-spec T-90 kills/immobolizes Arjun in desert from well beyond Arjuns weapons range using 9K119 Reflex missiles. Missiles that Arjun might fire would be dealt with using Shtora-1 system. Indian version of T-90 doesn't have it. After that Arjun is a pillbox thats easy to kill. Arjun was good experience. Now make something that is actually all-home designed and manufactured. As for "tests" that Arjun apparently won - T-90 was studied by DRDO and T-90 shown DRDO A LOT. If Arjun won so convincingly then why are those tests classified? Maybe because it won by a slim or 0 margin? 32 years of development and its about as good as a tank made 10 years prior.

cybersurg said...

The term "5th Gen" is something borrowed from Americans - like the term "fast food" even though we have had readymade dosas an pav-bhaji as fast food long before McDonalds.

5th gen is 5th gen for the USA. What we are looking at is to develop the skills that go into 5th gen. Apart from stealth and composites, we need to get the most efficient engines (Blisk anyone?), sensor fusion and secure data transfer between fighter, AWACS and infantry/ship. I am certain India can contribute in terms of flight control software, sensor fusion and composites. I am no sure if even Russians have developed Blisk tech for engines and this is something to develop in house.

We have a 20 year technology gap to bridge. It used to be a 30 year gap though.

Sudheendra said...

We may or may not learn as far as technology is concerned, but if it makes business sense then i will not be having any issues with it.

We shouldn't expect any design principles behind this aircraft getting transferred in this process, no country will do this. Rub your A** and learn on your own. There are no short cuts on this.

Just make sure that the money being put in is just worth it and this should create jobs back home and government should make money out this as well.

Anonymous said...

Now before we all jump to any conclusion, I think we need to get an opinion of the other side also. The other side here are the scientists and engineers from HAL, DRDO, ADA.

Shiv, can you get that.

I am a engineer and my brother is a defence officer. I know the people from Indian Defence forces suffer from the habit of disbelief in Indian R&D. This officer is not exception. What would he know about the technicalities of engineering and metallurgy.

Shiv, get us something new. We have seen the muddle-headedness of these officers for long now. Thank the gentleman for putting so much effort to write ENGLISH.

Anonymous said...

Wondering why there is such a delay in comments from Prasun! We are waiting for your take on this Prasun..

Anonymous said...

Will GOI get any royalty for this kind of investment assuming "Joint Development".

For example, UAE govt gets royalty for every Block 60 F-16 sold (because it funded the development of this version)

Abhid-d said...

Brilliantly written article by the IAF officer ! It shreds apart any pretensions that HAL has any technological contribution to the PAK-FA. HAL's only contribution is hard cash. That's it.

Actually, even though we've pretty much known all this (grudgingly or not) ever since the "partnership" was announced, that this comes from a serving IAF officer firmly drives the nail to the coffin of the so-called "joint development". In fact, at the risk of being slightly immodest, I'd say that I too have summarized the very points that the officer has raised on Shiv Aroor's blog a few times before.

Its clear that HAL is taking the country's exchequer for a nice ride, by calling plain licence production as "Joint development". Just as a chair is Not a sofa, licence production is Not joint development.

I also greatly admired the way the IAF officer steered clear of any unabashed criticism of the PAK-FA as a jet itself (in fact, he rightly praises its strike ability). His superb stance of Russia's-been-a-friend-but-not-a-philanthropist is a textbook rendition of neutral and unbiased writing. Simply loved it !

Mr. Ra said...

A bird (FGFA/T-50) in hand is better than the two (F-22/F-35) in the bushes, especially if the negative clauses are not attached.

Rahul Devnath said...

Anonymous @ 10AM:
People (both pilots and Technical Officers) from the Defence Forces, do suffer from the habit of disbelief in Indian R&D and for a valid reason. Ask a pilot who is asked to ferry a overhauled Mig-21 and still finds the a/c un-serviceable. Almost all the aircrafts churned out by HAL have been plagued by problems, even after having years of valuable experience. Right from HF-24s to HPT-32s. Defence of any country is not something which you can play around with. While it's important to have faith in our Indian R&D, its also important to highlight the loopholes. Let's stick to facts when it comes to something very crucial like FGFA. Opinions do have biases; agreed.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Anon@10.19AM: There's nothing to comment on at all as the observations of the IAF official are spot on and brutally honest, and also something I had been saying all along: the IAF as an end-user and operator gives a damn about indigenisation and is instead--and-rightfully--only concerned about operational sovereignty over its arsenals. The following are my other observations:
1) It is indeed unrealistic to expect HAL to be involved in any kind of design activity concerning the FGFA's airframe and accessories as HAL never had any core competencies in these fields (for new-generation fixed-wing combat aircraft). Only ADA and other DRDO labs like DARE, ADE, LRDE etc have acquired the necessary technological core competencies reqd for hands-on work on developing new-generation combat aircraft, thanks to the Tejas Mk1/2 programmes. Therefore, in my view if at all the MoD's objective was to bring in value-added R & D expertise into India, then the R & D agreement ought to have been inked between Rosoboronexport State Corp/Sukhoi OKB on one hand, and a consortium of DRDO and HAL on the other. However, as this was not done, I fail to see how HAL can even be classified as a D & D party. Consequently, it is the MoD that has let India down by not ensuring that India enters the FGFA programme as an equitable technological/industrial partner.
This in turn raises other questions: Was this the reason why in the run-up to the FGFA JV agreement-signing, unnamed ADA and MoD officials began leaking information about the projected AMCA? If that is the case, then did the MoD deliberately initiate a turf-war between the DRDO and HAL over competing projects like the FGFA and AMCA? And if this is the case, then which entity in India will design and develop the FGFA's customised integrated avionics suite--DRDO or HAL, considering that HAL has never had any experience in this area? Or will it be the Ruskies who will do all this work for HAL, just as was the case with the Su-30MKI? And if this indeed is the case, then did the MoD know all along that Russia was only interested in obtaining R & D funding (as in the case of BrahMos) from India and in return promising not to give the Chinese any kind of access to the T-50 PAK-FA project?

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Anon@10.19AM: There's nothing to comment on at all as the observations of the IAF official are spot on and brutally honest, and also something I had been saying all along: the IAF as an end-user and operator gives a damn about indigenisation and is instead--and-rightfully--only concerned about operational sovereignty over its arsenals. The following are my other observations:
1) It is indeed unrealistic to expect HAL to be involved in any kind of design activity concerning the FGFA's airframe and accessories as HAL never had any core competencies in these fields (for new-generation fixed-wing combat aircraft). Only ADA and other DRDO labs like DARE, ADE, LRDE etc have acquired the necessary technological core competencies reqd for hands-on work on developing new-generation combat aircraft, thanks to the Tejas Mk1/2 programmes. Therefore, in my view if at all the MoD's objective was to bring in value-added R & D expertise into India, then the R & D agreement ought to have been inked between Rosoboronexport State Corp/Sukhoi OKB on one hand, and a consortium of DRDO and HAL on the other. However, as this was not done, I fail to see how HAL can even be classified as a D & D party. Consequently, it is the MoD that has let India down by not ensuring that India enters the FGFA programme as an equitable technological/industrial partner.
This in turn raises other questions: Was this the reason why in the run-up to the FGFA JV agreement-signing, unnamed ADA and MoD officials began leaking information about the projected AMCA? If that is the case, then did the MoD deliberately initiate a turf-war between the DRDO and HAL over competing projects like the FGFA and AMCA? And if this is the case, then which entity in India will design and develop the FGFA's customised integrated avionics suite--DRDO or HAL, considering that HAL has never had any experience in this area? Or will it be the Ruskies who will do all this work for HAL, just as was the case with the Su-30MKI? And if this indeed is the case, then did the MoD know all along that Russia was only interested in obtaining R & D funding (as in the case of BrahMos) from India and in return promising not to give the Chinese any kind of access to the T-50 PAK-FA project?

Ben - Yours truly said...

A disappointing article from the officer. Reading his article, I wondered if the IAF is the Indian Air Force or the air force of some other third country that happens to be, to his great misfortune, hosted in India and tasked with defending us lowly Indians.

The article reflects a profound lack of faith in indigenous R&D capabilities. Perhaps DRDO/HAL's track record has a lot to do with it too. But what is more serious is the officer's condescending attitude towards the nation's defense industry that seems endemic and systemic in the IAF, if you read between the lines.


How very true?
The IAF thinks its better off inviting a bunch of OEMs ask them to exhibit their stuff, let them chase after them for 5 or more years. select a smaller bunch, initiate negotiations with everyone for extra goodies, withhold the decision till they offer someone pushes down with pressure from MOD(most likely from embassy of OEM country) allegations of kickbacks(though it would have happened all along the way from start of RFP) and select an obsolete platform to maintain for 40 years. This exactly happened when we chose Jaguar for deep-strike operation. They never want to do the hard work to get a state of art product.

Anonymous said...

it'll have serious cost problems, think F-22

but like the F-22 it'll give excellent performance, a king of the sky

rajiv said...

I Have one question about IAF.
DRDO and HAL may be below average by IAF standards but tell me how good IAF is.
DRDO and HAL unlike IAF doesn't get best talent. India best Talent doesnot work for these research labs.
IAF has over 230 plus 4 generation fighter but have they been able to frighten PAF with their might.

Kargil and Red flag showed how good IAF was. I bet in dogfight PAF would have an upper hand against IAF.
Crticise if you something better to offer as compared to DRDO.

Anonymous said...

Anon @ 10:00 am : "I know the people from Indian Defence forces suffer from the habit of disbelief in Indian R&D. This officer is not exception. What would he know about the technicalities of engineering and metallurgy."

There are a million "people from Indian Defence Forces" fighting for your and my backside. Obviously your keen and astute observation of the single one you know, allows you to generalise your opinion about all of them.

Since we are generalising, let me bung in my two annas. The issue at hand is not of the scores of committed and talented people making up the PSU / DRDO behemoth. It is of the lack of programme management focus in these organizations. This lack of focus is covered up by media hype surrounding strictly mediocre HAL and DRDO products and achievements. The "mistrust" that you attribute to the services might be based on the fact that the "Navratna" with an unlimited budget, massive infrastructure and "cost plus" business model, is so crippled by archaic management techniques and union pressure that it is nowhere in the leading aerospace majors in the world. A few F18 gun bay doors and Airbus components does not make HAL a design house of any repute. The service officers "phobia" may also be the result of picking through the smouldering wreckage of a recently overhauled aeroplane looking for the remains of a brother officer and finding a HAL spanner in the engine block. All organizations have processes that end in mistakes, but no one does a better job of covering up their negligence and diffusing accountability than the PSU / DRDO combine. This lack of accountability is the true stumbling block to progress. The forces have their own goof ups to answer for, but at least they have some process in place to affix responsibility and avoid making the same mistake twice. If HAL is so damned good at R&D, let it demonstrate it by one indigenous success story, just one product which comes in on time and on spec. Till then, discretion is advised.

Anonymous said...

I think we need to look at this from a more straight forward perspective:

The 30 billion dollars Russia gets from us is ransom money ... or else they sell this platform to China or to whoever else is willing to pay for it.

This entire contribution to the Russian economy comes to zero if we dont have guarantees ETCHED IN STONE that they will not sell any variant of this fighter.

At the same time, the defence of India from China can only be guaranteed with full integration of this weapon system.

Therefore, we need to see this in two ways:

1. This fighter guarantees air superiority.
2. If we don't buy it, then the Chinese will and if they do, then we may as well stand down.

Anonymous said...

I know this is probably not related but I can't help but think about the Indian Navy here. The IN is at a stage where it virtually makes all platforms in India and in case of the Kamorta class, they have taken a 3 year delay to bring the Indian ship-building Industry up to world class ship manufacturing standards. They have understood the fact that Indian ship building industry is not as old as say Britain's and working together with GRSE,MDL and even with Pipavav and L&T (albeit after some initial friction) to come up with world class ships at Indian prices. The process is mighty painful but look at the results. The awesome Kolkata, Kamorta, Delhi, Shivalik classes which can stand up tall with the latest US/Russian ships.

Me thinks the IAF is a snotty & selfish bunch concerned with a very narrow view of the world-theirs. Not to discount any of the observations made by the officer here-but whoever who has written this, think about it. HAL has not made 2/3 platforms before-LCA is the first attempt. It took 20+ years but it is flying now and the Mark-2 version is well on its way to become reality. The Mk-2 would be dare i say as good as the Mirage 2000. Give HAL some rope, aircraft building is a very complex industry and a toddler cannot be expected to run with adults (Lockheed, BAE, Sukhoi).

I know the readymade platform is much more desirable, but it comes with a lot more strings attached. Rest is upto your vision and priorities which i would definitely say is constricted and short-sighted.

Tats

Kunal said...

@Prasun K. Sengupta @ 2:21 PM

Absolutely spot on. The hefty co-sharing of R&D/royalty payment is nothing else but to compensate for lost sales to Russia and to block future sales to known adversaries. It surely does not take astrophysiscs or string theory to decipher that.

Anonymous said...

Pls watch this video titled "Blot on the uniform". This will give you some idea the state of "defense acquisitions" in India.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7RhnHPU5-JY

Shiv pls allow this post as it is informative and people do need to know what is happening in the name of "defense".

Raghavendra said...

Before getting into all the discussion of becoming a joint development partner or a end user, lets talk about the people and the institutions they work, who want to design a PAK-FA or FGFA, whether they are truly in the same league as their Russian counterparts (or not) based on capability and competencies.

Core Competency will develop when scientists who 1)works hard or/and 2)is genius. or both. people who are recruited to scientist post by way of reservation lack both. reservations injects laziness and irresponsible people into any system it gets into. these special breed of people only set their sight on month end salary and not on scientific goals(not plain speak !. research for yourself !). let us take for example our beloved military. it is considered the only Government institution in our country which doesn't recruits based on reservations. like wise, people who are in R & D field of defense institutions like HAL and DRDO labs should recruit with out reservations. Does Sukhoi Design Bureau of Russia have reservation ? does Do Lockheed martin and Boeing of USA have reservation ? ok. leave western hemisphere. does China have reservations ? THEN WHY SHOULD INDIA NEED RESERVATIONS?

those people who speak of social inequality please leave defense systems and institutions aside for god sake. you can play anything you want with civilian institutions. merit is one of the most basic ethics of humans universally accepted in all countries except India.

God save us.

don't take me wrong for what I'm about to say. just for the sake of comparing, that's all. Even Pakistan doesn't have reservations.

Final Word : make DRDO, HAL, all Labs off limits to Reservations. Guess the Outcome for yourself !!!

Raghavendra said...

core competencies are discussed by Prasun ji in his above post. i want to stress on that part of his reply with my post. just my 2cents.

note: prasun ji, please start blogging.thanks in advance.

Anonymous said...

@ Tats - "Me thinks the IAF is a snotty & selfish bunch concerned with a very narrow view of the world-theirs"

Yeah right - Comparing shipbuilding with fighter ac design is apples and oranges. Ask yourself why the mighty Indian Navy is buying MiG 29Ks like there's no tomorrow and floating fresh RFPs for the 18-25 tonne shipborne fighter? They should just wait for naval LCA to come into service as promised to sort out all their needs. For that matter, return the P-8Is and ask HAL to whip up a bunch of LRMP platforms based on an indigenous MTA. In the same vein, why not throw out the Barak (which is universally acknowledged by anyone actually on board any warship of the IN)in favour of a DRDO replacement.

The simple fact is that the IAF and IN have a very real requirement for hardware which cannot be fulfilled by virtual timelines - they need the kit in place and functioning. If DRDO / HAL / fledgeling industry cannot deliver on time and to spec, they will need to purchase from wherever. If the hardware can be made available within a reasonable spec, they will definitely acquire it. (your shipyard example / Akash etc). Snotty and selfish has nothing to do with it.

Anonymous said...

Indian Space Craft failed due to espionage? : Concerns GBA

http://www.internationalreporter.com/News-6405/indian-space-craft-failed-due-to-espionage-concerns-gba.html

BigLulli said...

Well, China has just rolled out its two 5th Gen prototypes for high speed taxi tests. So the US$5billion allocated for PAKFA could well be a good move for now. See link below.

http://elhangardetj.blogspot.com/

satbir said...

Russian Trade Minister Viktor Khristenko said that the aircraft are to be jointly developed and produced with India and both countries will share benefits from selling the plane not only on their domestic markets, but also on the markets of third countries.
So I think its a good deal isnt it.
After the deal signed, russian news channel RT shows PAK-FA as being jointly developed with India. Before this(deal sign) they showed its as only Rassian aircraft.

Anonymous said...

Anon 7.06 PM,

I agree with you. If you look at ISRO's stellar record, these repeated setbacks wrt to GSLV, the rocket which can give a serious run for money to all space powers, indicates that these rockets are being sabotaged by someone in ISRO. If one of the most senior guys in Groshkov deal (supposed to be most talented as per IN's parlance), can be bought off so cheaply by the Russians, nothing can be ruled out in series of GSLV failures. The same rocket had performed excellently before. Why all of a sudden we are seeing such failures in quick succession?

Anonymous said...

@Satbir,

Don't believe word by word what they tell you particularly when this is a multi billion $ deal and there are several vested interests. Read between the lines. Prior to 2006 why was Russia reluctant to design the A/C with India, and now when the bird has flown, all of a sudden they r willing to design and develop a jet that has already been designed and developed by them for a princely price of 5 billion $s? Dal me kuch kala hai.

JF-17 said...

Gents,

Don't speak the THRUTH...BR will need to use lot more toilet paper....infact i hate to admit PAF had more design input into the JF-17....I think IAF has kept its focus. They need a platform for war fighting and not jingoism.

santa singh said...

air force officer can even write !!! surprising !!!!!!

satbir said...

Anon 12:33 AM
Perhaps we must wait for the contract to be disclosed. & a lot have changed since 2006. U may know tht.

BigLulli said...

Shiv, let get the officer's super duper expert opinion on this.

http://i370.photobucket.com/albums/oo144/GMC_089/J201.jpg

http://i55.tinypic.com/1pcuur.jpg

Anonymous said...

What would you call somebody who contributes 25% of the intellectual property in a complex product?

I would call such a contributor a co-developer.

In the case of India, it just happens that HAL signed the deal on behalf of all Indian entities, just as Sukhoi and Rosoboron signed on behalf of all Russian entities.

Like good soldiers, all should fall in line for the success of the project and refrain from silly arguments.

Anonymous said...

If it wasn't for sanctions, India would not have reached where we have as the services would always prefer a ready made product.

When history of this period is written, it will become abundantly clear that the lack of foresight and teamwork shown by the services has delayed progress in domestic manufacture of defense equipment.

DRDO should learn from past experience and only promise what it can definitely deliver. For the rest they should tie up with experienced partners.

DRDO should also discourage scope change till the agreed version is rolled out. Scope changes should be handled in subsequent versions. It may even be necessary to develop specialists to negotiate with the services.

Anonymous said...

From the super duper officers perspective, the chinese approach will surely lead to disaster as they do not have the pedigree of Sukhoi.

I for one would always like to have enemies who import most of their equipment from abroad.

Interestingly, the super duper officers' perspective matches very closely with that of the think tank from Malaysia (regarding the capabilities of DRDO and Babus) only the language is more polite.

So? said...

FWIW, latest Russian rumors are that the FGFA will not just be a T-50MKI. They are talking about things like different wings and major fuselage changes.

Anonymous said...

PAK-FA program did not start in the late 80s.

prs said...

First solution, privatize HAL.

Second solution, bring in some private companies to compete with HAL. But, we should be careful these guys won't bribe our sincere IAF officers :) to get their prototype selected.

Third solution, stop thinking about Indigenioization. :)

Anonymous said...

We, INDIAN Taxpayers are funding this russian 2nd grade programme, which the chinese rejected!

Infact, even financially speaking- WE, Indians are taking up the 'sunk cost' for developing this aircraft and as this IAF dude has pointed out, we are getting nuts for our money!

We invested in this aircraft without a due selection process ( I mean compare that to the selection process of MMRCA)

2ndly, we dont know how good or bad this aircraft is going to be? Or is it going to be delivered on time or not ? (remember Gorshkov ?)

3rdly- Do we even need this aircraft? For this money? Was any long term strategic study done by any to ask for its need in IAF?


Then there are other questions like:

#1) Do we get a FULL technology transfer ? And full control over spares and all critical technologies? or is it going to be just a license production in India?

#2) Is India a co-owner of this program (Co-developer and co-owner are not same! and India can still be a co-owner without being a co-developer)

#3) Do we have a say (legally) on whom this technology is sold in the future?

And lastly think about this? - We could have simply bought this off the shelf in 2020 and invested our money in India to develop a 4.5th generation aircraft like the Rafale.

Let's think logically folks and Not some fairy tales that dudes like this one from IAF has told us!

30 years back both IAF and Indian Navy were entirely dependent on foreign hardware- look where Indian Navy is right now and what pathetic situation the IAF has managed to get itself into !

Anonymous said...

IAF has not done enough compared to the amounts spent on them. Also IAF does not know how to build planes. ADA/HAL should be allowed to operate the air force for synergy. They already have test pilots. At the least domestic military industrial complex will develop. Your source and his ilk suffer from hubris. They need to focus on their job instead of poking their nose into other people's business.

Hanonymous said...

What happens when people have unrealistic expectations ?

Their dreams come crashing down on earth.

Somehow I find it very very difficult to think I that Russia will actually "teach" India how to design an aircraft and make it in numbers.

Why ?

Because we are their biggest customer.

Find me a food seller who let's his customers know his special ingredient in his food.

At the end of the day, we have asked for an MKI version just like Russians had in mind for us. Maybe design a few things here and there.

It was wrong of us to expect Russia to be selfless in the name of "friendship". Nobody does that. Period.