Amid rising challenges of national security, the Indian Air Force is keen to have large and efficient squadrons of the latest fighter jets. The Indian Air Force which had earlier planned to go for an engine upgrade of the Jaguar deep penetration strike aircraft has now rather decided to go for additional procurement of Sukhoi Su-30 MKIs. The plan is to replace the grounded Jaguar fighters with new Sukhoi Su-30 MKI fighters according to reports in thePrint.
Why is the Indian Air Force Going For SU-30 MKI
The Print has quoted defence sources that the Rolls Royce Adour 811 engines of the twin-engine Jaguar have witnessed a reduction in thrust leading to compromised capabilities.
The IAF had selected the US-based Honeywell for an engine upgrade with F-125 IN engines. However, the price quoted by Honeywell and HAL for the upgrade was too steep and unreasonable.
The Jaguars are already going through an avionics upgrade from Drain-I to Drain- III but this upgrade programme too is running seven years behind schedule. Experts feel that the drastic fall in the performance of the Jaguar fighters can even put the lives of the pilot at risk.
The Jaguar is a twin-engine, ground-attack aircraft that was inducted in service with the IAF in 1979 for the first time. The Jaguars are also nuclear-capable and hence they have served the IAF with an authoritative glory for more than 40 years now.
This aircraft ended India’s quest for a deep penetration strike aircraft. Now when the Jaguars are perhaps ageing, India will look at the latest options in the defence inventories and what better than tried and tested SU-30 MKI’s which are the most advanced fighter jets within the Indian Air Force.