AESA Ready, Rafale Tests Meteor BVRAAM

On October 4 and 10, a Dassault Rafale (tail number B301), successfully tested two MBDA Meteor beyond visual range air-to-air missiles. The aircraft was operating from the Cazaux DGA Flight Test Center in South-Western France.

"In October 2012, the RAFALE omnirole fighter reached tw o majormilestones: the first delivery of a production aircraft equipped with the first production RBE2 AESA radar, and the initial successful testing of the new-generation, very long-range, METEOR air-to-air missile," a spokesperson for the company said.

The IAF leadership has also showered praise on the Rafale recently. In an interview to Air Marshal Vinod Bhatia of SP's Aviation magazine, IAF chief Air Chief Marshal N.A.K. Browne has said, "The Rafale is a combat-proven fourth generation+ swing role aircraft equipped with high technology sensors and electronic warfare (EW) suite, including a state-of-the-art AESA radar. The robust system architecture capable of data fusion, along with an outstanding weapon carrying capability gives the Rafale true versatility to undertake a wide range of operational missions. The combat capabilities of the Rafale were adequately proven in the recent air operations in Libya. The induction of Rafale in the IAF along with associated weaponry will indeed prove to be a game-changer in the IAF's combat capability."

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