Total Pageviews

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Despatches From Singapore Airshow 2012


dashu said...

did I see correctly?? what LCA is doing there . they really look good

KSK said...

Hey Prasun check out these tiny UAVs

What will happen when larger ones with PGMs could swarm?

madhup said...

@prasun sir
which irst sensor has Israel on offer for us to be used with el/m 2052 AESA mmr .
is there any update on the sudharsan lgb.

Anonymous said...


Do you have any updates on the 'new' F-16 variant unveiled by Lockheed Martin-the F-16V? Do you think this is a hedge against the JSF and how will it fare against the Eurocanards in sales.

What do you think are the Rafale's chances in Brazil, UAE and now Switzerland from the supposed bounce they have got following the MMRCA announcement?

Anonymous said...|topnews|text|FRONTPAGE

Seems like IN has requirement for similar platform?

Anonymous said...

prasun da can you shed some light on PDV missile defence please?

Anonymous said...

Hi Prasun,
Raytheon is still presenting its APG-63(V)3 for F-15s... Any news about APG-82(V)1??

Chintan said...

Could you put Comments, Headings, Titles or something indicating what each picture shows please?

F said...

Hello Prasun,

1. Do you think the appearance of the RMAF's Fulcrums and the increased participation of RSAF fighters at LIMA over the past few years is an indication that relations between Malaysia and Singapore are improving and that these are signs of greater future defence co-operation?

2. A friend of mine just got back from India. It seems that to book a hotel room, foreigners have to fill up a separate form, that is collected by the police the next day. And to get a local SIM card, one has to provide a local address, fill up a separate form and provide a photo! Were all these measures, introduced for foreigners, due to the terrorism threat?

3. There was a recent statement by the army, that there are plans to raise additional units to be based in Sarawak? In your opinion is this due to fears that things could escalate in the future over Ambalat?

4. Are you still of the opinion that for SEA armies, the days of 105mm towed guns are over and that one should stick solely to motorised or tracked 155mm guns? Bear in mind that towed 105mm guns are still useful as they can be unlimbered, laid and unlimbered much faster than towed 155 guns due to being smaller and lighter.
Unlike many NATO armies, the Brits still see a need for their 105mm guns.

Anonymous said...

Hi PRASUN , pls clarify one thing. From the model of the F-16 RACR it seems that it has a greater aperture area than the RBE2 on the Rafale. Can u pls tell the no of TR modules in RACR. Is it superior to the RBE2? Also what IA the optronic pod featured in the F-15SG2 photo?

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Dashu: That’s the RACR AESA-MMR being proposed along with the EL/M-2052 and Northrop Grumman’s SABR for the Tejas Mk2 & LCA (Navy) Mk2.

To KSK: Even for smaller countries like Israel there are presently 8 different levels of UAVs and UCAVs combined, meaning there are eight separate levels of airspace corridors, excluding the corridors reserved for fixed-wing and rotary-wing aircraft flight operations.

To MADHUP: Israel does not have any kind of IRST sensor of its own to offer. The smallest IRST that is available for fitment on to the Tejas Mk2-type MRCA is the Skyward from Italy’s Selex Galileo.

To Anon@10.25AM: The F-16V will incorporate a sizeable amount of new-generation avionics/mission sensors that have already been developed for the F/A-22 and F-35. Items like AESA-MMR, AESA-based EW jammers, plus the all-important IRST are among the items planned for retrofit on to existing F-16s. The package is in many ways similar to what Dassault Aviation, SAGEM & THALES have been proposing for the Mirage 2000 upgrades worldwide, and for which India is the launch export customer. As for the Rafale’s export prospects worldwide, viewed from a budgetary perspective the Swiss, Finland & Kuwait may well opt for the Super Hornet, while for Brazil it is still 50:50 between the Gripen NG and Rafale. The UAE is shopping not purely for a combat aircraft, but more for a financial scheme under which it can also secure a combat aircraft. That being the case, it is likely to opt for either an F-16V-type MRCA, or the Super Hornet International Roadmap.

To Anon@11.15AM: Not the IN, but the ICGS.

To Anon@9.30PM: The APG-82(V)1 is meant for the existing F-15Es and the new F-15SE. It represents the 5th generation of AESA-MMRs.

To Chintan: A picture is always worth a thousand words.

To FARIS: Firstly, bilateral relations between Malaysia & Singapore were always great and can only get better in the years ahead. Secondly, those procedures are standard for all hotels in India that are below four-star rank. SIM-card registration regulations are the same as those in Malaysia. Additional formations are reqd in East Malaysia since it is impossible for just one Division to guarantee the security of East Malaysia. It is therefore time that an existing Division from Peninsular Malaysia be re-deployed on a permanent basis to Sabah. The days of towed guns—105mm or 155mm—are clearly over. For countries like Malaysia, motorised 155mm howitzers are the best simply because in future localised conflicts (limited border wars) the battlelines won’t be linear, but will be constantly shifting largely to due the peculiar terrain conditions. Therefore, field artillery won’t be dug-in, but will be reqd to shift positions quite often, along with motorised counter-battery radars. In addition, more varieties of 155mm PGMs are available nowadays, compared to virtually nothing for 105mm howitzers. Insuead, the 105mm howitzers are being rendered insignificant by the new-generation long-range breech-loading mortars (120mm & 81mm) that can fire laser-/IR-guided rounds.

To Anon@5.28PM: The RACR’s aperture is more or less the same as that of the RBE-2. It is certainly not bigger. It appears bigger since it is a scale-model. The optronic pod is the Tiger Eye IRST, used by the F-15SG & F-15K.

Anonymous said...

You did not reply for the comments in last post....hope that you will :)

Unknown said...


There are reports the Ka-226 has won the LUH competition which i doubt. What are your thoughts? Who do you see winning this competion? and when are we likely to see the winner of this drawn out competition and the first bird in service in India?

sbm said...

Prasun, I have seen photos of the IAFs new Mi-17V5 but none with the EO turret. Where is that turret ?

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Unknown: I haven;t heard anything to that effects, either from Eurocopter or the Russians.

To SBM: It is a retrofit kit, and will be installed later in the chin, just like the C-130J-30s that first came without the FLIR, but were subsequently fitted in-country on the starboard side. The photos released are of the Mi-17V-5's first flights after being ferried by ship and being refitted in India.

sbm said...

So - have the EO turrets already been purchased (isn't an Indian assembled Elta system ) ?

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To SBM: They FLIR turrets were delivered a year ago, along with the turrets ordered for the Navy's Sea King Mk42Bs and Ka-28PLs.

Anonymous said...

In your last article you talked about PLA conducting exercises in near uttaranchal. Has indian army planned exercises in HImalayas ? I mean we conducted exercises with as many as 50000 soldiers on western side but considering the country which has so many different geographical regions and so many conflict areas, i don't think we are fully prepared to fight wars in every areas. Uttranchal has different mountains, Anurachal is also totally different and god Sikkim is whole different area. We have so many islands but our forces are not trained for amphibious operations.

I heard last year that GRSE is going to use composite tech and modular shipbuilding for 3rd and 4th corvettes in Kamorta Class because by the time GRSE was getting these techs from Kockums AB the hull for 1st two were already. Is it true ??????

I heard P17a gathered pace, what's the progress ??? Please Please try to find some artistic impression of the design of P17a FFG, P28A corvettes and P15b DDG.

Is there any plans to replacve the missile boats ??

According to IN's modernisation plans there were plans to purchase 24 SSK. 6 from a european vendor and 6 from Russia followed by 12 SSK which would be built indigenously. Any progress on the front of indigenous SSK submarine ?

Is the unmanned Dhruv or Unmanned Chetak project in collaboration with Israel still going on ?

Recently i read a report about India pressing for more collaboration with Israel in the field of military satellites. Do you have any information about this development ?

Are we gonna purchase any HALE UAV or not ? If yes then when ? Is Rustam-2 a HALE or MALE UAV ?

Which are the deals that could be signed before the end of current financial year ? Or this is it for this year ?

Anonymous said...

Hi, u said the Raytheon RACR for the F-16 has approximately the same aperture as the RBE2 but certainly not bigger. What is the TR module count of the RACR? Also how does the RBE2 fare against the APG 80 which was provided with the F-16 IN Super Viper. Does it has greater radar aperture area and greater no of TR modules as compared to RBE2? Does it provide greater range?

Anonymous said...

hope that you will reply for the comments in previous post.... :)

Anonymous said...

Hi PRASUN,1. u said the F-16 V will have many new components developed for the F-22 and F-35. Will it have a new AESA MMR and a new higher thrust engine? Will it have VLO shaping? Will it's capabilities exceed that of Rafale? 2. Are the jammers of the Spectra EW AESA or phased array type? Are there any plans of introducing AESA based emitters in Rafale? 3. How does the Electro optical suite of the Rafale compare to that of the Typhoon and F-16IN? 4. Are there any plans of integrating into the Rafale any sort if IR jammer or DIRCM? Pls rep.

Yawn said...

MoD officials question Rafale deal

Read more at:


Have you seen this? While there is nothing specific on their concerns on the evaluation process, it is interesting? Do you think these sort of claims are valid and can derail the Rafale and pretty much the competition?

Anonymous said...

"An Unmanned Aerial Vehicle of the Eastern Naval Command crashed into a hill at Himachal Nagar in Visakhapatnam on Thursday afternoon."

Which one is it?

abs said...

1) we are all waerky awaiting your follow up to the article "how china will fight future border wars", i hope you put that up as soon as possible, and it would be very helpful if you can tell us as to how the IA/IAF's riposte would be.
2)i know you keep very busy but it would be very kind of you if you can answer to my last query in your previous article.
3)sometime back there were talks of the IA weighing up options to go for helicopter mounted EW systems. what has happened to that? how many are to be procured?and if they would suffice in covering the entire TBA stretching from the northern borders to the western borders and ditto with the NE borders, including the enemy depth and rear areas?
4)are there any plans of having a network for the IA similar to the TAIS and ASAS.if so please elaborate?
5) i heard the CIDSS consistes of an Electronic Warfare System network can u elaborate more??

SK said...

Prasun has the IAF any interest in the very capable IAI C-295 AWEC platform instead of going for 14 Embraer or Gulfstream based AWEC it can opt for a few of these.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Anon@12.23PM: The Indian Army always conducts exercises in ALL its operational areas (and not just in and around Uttarakhand) and under various scenarios. That’s how contingency plans are prepared in the first place. As for amphibious warfare, the capabilities are being increased by the Navy, since the Army does not want to become the lead agency for such operations.

To Anon@1.28PM: RACR’s T/R module count is lesser than that of the RBE-2. The APG-80 belongs to the third generation of AESA-MMRs, whereas the RBE-2 is more of a fourth generation AESA-MMR in terms of technology & capabilities. The Rafale’s nose-section is bigger than that of the F-16 & therefore the APG-80’s antenna is smaller in size.

To Anon@1.56PM: All those queries will be answered in the latest thread, to be uploaded by this weekend.

To Anon@5PM: Will it have a new AESA MMR and a new higher thrust engine? YES
Will it have VLO shaping? NO.
Will it's capabilities exceed that of Rafale? OF COURSE NOT.
Are the jammers of the Spectra EW AESA or phased array type? AESA-type.
How does the Electro optical suite of the Rafale compare to that of the Typhoon and F-16IN? The Rafale’s optronic suite is far superior. Read this:
Are there any plans of integrating into the Rafale any sort if IR jammer or DIRCM? NO.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Yawn: In any competitive bidding process there are always dissenting notes. That is healthy and fully acceptable. In this case, the notes of dissent are in a minority within the Price Negotiations Committee. So there’s nothing to worry about at all. It is time for all of us to go way beyond this curve and think about the following:
1) Since the FGFA from the outset will have two IRST sensors for according 360-degree hemispherical coverage, will Dassault Aviation/THALES also incorporate such capabilities within the upgraded Rafale, which will emerge before 2025?
2) Will the upgraded Rafale’s airfame house a distributed-aperture AESA like what will go on the Super Su-30MKI?
3) How will the Rafale’s two-way operational data-links be interfaced with the Army’s battlespace management system (BMS) and its F-INSAS component via a tactical internet network before 2018? Will the same also apply for the upgraded Mirage 2000s & upgraded Jaguar IS?
These are, but a few issues that need to be discussed and analysed. For make no mistake, thanks to the Rafale induction and the Super Su-30MKI upgrades proceeding almost in parallel, the IAF is now in an enviable position and is gearing up for inducting and operationalising far more network-centric capabilities that most other air forces, including those of China, France, the UK & Russia, are likely to field over the next eight years.

To Anon@10.20PM: Searcher Mk2 or Heron-1.

To ABS: Most of your queries will be answered in the upcoming analysis of PLA war postures.

To SK: The interest remains, primarily for usage over India’s northeastern airspace. But the degree of priority is lower as of now.

LEE said...

Anonymous said...

Hey Prasun,

Recently drdo decided to invest alot of money in setting up new facilities. Can you tell us the progress of these facilities ? Like there is one for UAVs, one for electronic warfare, new wind tunnel facility for testing hypersonic missiles.

There was also one wind tunnel facility which was proposed by Boeing as an offset for i think P8i deal or C17 deal (i am not sure which deal but yeah they are building a wind tunnel facility for India). Any news on this ?

What happened to HAL-UAC MRTA project ? I heard its facing some delays, is it back on track now ?

Do we have all testing facilities to test the future air-crafts like AMCA, AURA etc. ?

Is HSTDV only a tech demonstrator or we can expect it to be used as a weapon ?

How were the winter trials of arjun mk2 ? How many upgrades of the total 93, still to be included in arjun mk2 ?

Anonymous said...

Any new india specific development in Singapore air show ?

Any new deals or JVs expected during upcoming Defexpo 2012 ? Can we expect the updates on FINSAS project during defeexpo because according to the program timeline the 1st phase is supposed to be over in 2012 ?

Anonymous said...

any update on the
sudharsan lgb

abs said...

since when is it the job of DRDO to produce transport vehicles???

abs said...

since when is it the job of DRDO to produce transport vehicles???

abs said...

i was going through a few articles related to the IA's NCW plans and i have a few doubts
1) does he IA have any plans for systems like the TAIS and ASAS?? would the AD&CR have similar roles like TAIS??
2)i read somewhere that as part of the CIDSS there is a plan to have an Electronic Warfare System Network. can you further elaborate on it, i have come across hardly anything related to it in the internet
3) what is the TCS and for out of area operations would the TCS form the backbone for the BMS,BSS, AD&CR and ACCCS and what about the ASTROIDS and DCN?? or are satellite based comm form the backbone for all these during out of area operations??

Anonymous said...

The follow on order for 2 more AWACs has been placed/comfirmed with Israel or is file still with the babus at MOD?

You have recently mentioned that the Mirage 2000 UPG includes Spectra EWS. Does it includes AESA rader too?


Anonymous said...

sir you have been saying that snecma will develop a m88 variant with roughly 150kn of wet thrust....

but sir is this even possible to get so much thrust out of this small engine ??

are there any updates on tejas mk2 or arjun mk2.....haven't heard anything about them from a long time....

plus we are still waiting for those write-ups on finsas , iaf-rafale-updates...

Yawn said...

Navy to embark on submarine program


A couple of articles are saying that 3 countries have offered 'Taiwan' submarine technology while also ruling out the major European players. I remember you stating often that we missed a big chance with the Type-1500 design we got from the Germans. Do you think we are among these 3 nations!! It would make sense since the ROC-N is pretty competent to thoroughly rework the systems on it.

KSK said...

Do you agree with the "CONCLUSION" of this article?

Anonymous said...

Prasun between Fennec and Ka-226 which one would you choose. Could you explain both their advantages and disadvantages based on performance.

KSK said...

Are you on vacation Mr.Prasun?
Hope you get back to blogging soon.

Anonymous said...

Are the Europeans doing this cas they have little chance of winning?

SK said...

Prasun does any current or proposed naval SSK feature the Spherical Sonar. Is any one offering such advance solutions in the market.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To all: Have been trying to make sense of all that was absorbed by me at last week's Singapore Air Show, especially about the F-15SG and the F-15 Silent Eagle. Had extremely enthralling discussions with the RSAF & Boeing officials regarding the comparative performance parameters of the Super Su-30MKI & F-15 Silent Eagle. Needless to say, even the USAF is keenly interested in the on-going developments in India with regard to the sequential and rather envious introduction of three types of combat aircraft with new-generation AESA-MMRs & IRST sensors, i.e. Super Su-30MKI, Rafale & FGFA. Goes without saying that I thoroughly enjoyed and relished such intellectual interactions during the expo.

To YAWN: No, India ain't one of them. It is the ROK, the US & probably the Dutch.

To KSK: Not all the factors have been spelt out in that analysis. For instance, India not only gave asylum to the Dalai Lama (then the spiritual & temporal leader of all Tibetans), but also agreed to host the Tibetan Parliament-in-exile & the Tibet govt-in-exile--all prior to the war of 1962. And in doing so, the Govt of India made a total mockery of its own policy of acknowledgement of Tibet as being an integral part of China. In addition, India wilfully violated the 'Panchsheel' agreement struck in 1955 in Bandung when it permitted the US to make use of Indian territory to provide lethal material assistance to the Tibetan rebels holed up in Mustang, Nepal, and also raised SOF units like the SFF, ITBF & SSB to help the Tibetan armed insurrections between 1957 and 1961. This is what I'm working on now (about India's secret war inside Tibet with US assistance) and this topic also is the one I've chosen for my doctoral thesis. Will upload the first part of this analysis later tonight, rest assured.

To SK: No, spherical sonars have been developed abroad only for applications on board nuclear-powered submarines. All bow-mounted sonars on board Indian SSKs are of the cylindrical-type.

Prasun K. Sengupta said...

To Anon@10.14AM: I wouldn't choose any of them, and instead prefer to see the existing SA.315B Lama/Cheetah helicopters be upgraded to the 'Cheetal' configuration, which will enable these helicopters to stay in service for at least another decade. At the same time, I would instead invest the money saved on the LUH being designed and developed by HAL. Consurrently, I would like to see the ARDE develop laser-guided 2.75-inch rockets like the ones already developed by BAE Systems (APKWS) & Lockheed Martin (DAGR) for LUHs/LOHs. But then, folks like me are often in a minority when it comes to entertaining or encouraging such lines of thought.

Anonymous said...

Hi, does the Mirage 2000 UPG has the Spectra EW suite?? Also when so much care has been given to the protection of the Rafale from radar guided threats by providing such a highly advanced Spectra EW suite then why very little has been done to protect it from IR guided threats? Only flares have been provided for protection from IR missiles. Nowadays very advanced IR missiles have come up with ECCM features and Focal planar array seeker which can't be fooled by flares. So when DIRCM have been developed for small helos then why can't this go on the Rafale? Also the Rafale can have an IR jammer. Why hasnt any attention been paid to protecting the ac from modern IR missiles? Pls reply.