Russia, India to Discuss Su-30MKI Fighter Modernization
Russia, India to Discuss Su-30MKI Fighter Modernization © AP Photo/ Aijaz Rahi
18:50 16.02.2015(updated 19:16 16.02.2015)
MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Russia and India will discuss the modernization of Russian-designed Sukhoi Su-30MKI (Flanker-H) fighters, including equipping them with BrahMos cruise missiles, Russian aircraft corporation Irkut said on Monday.
The talks are to take place at the upcoming Aero India 2015 defense and civil aviation expo, to be held February 18-22 in Bangalore.
“Research institutions and industrial facilities in India will participate in the program to modernize the Su-30MKI, which will significantly increase the combat capabilities of the aircraft,” an Irkut spokesperson told reporters.
Russia’s Sukhoi Su-30MKI super-maneuverable fighter jet is a variant of the Su-30MK developed for the Indian Air Force. The first test of the Russian-Indian supersonic BrahMos cruise missile is due to take place in March 2015.
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The spokesperson added that designers are currently working on integrating BrahMos cruise missiles into the Su-30MKI, which will “improve the combat capabilities of this unique complex.”
According to the spokesperson, a major success for India’s Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) manufacturer was to succeed, with the help of Irkut’s specialists, in the overhaul of the Su-30MKI fighters. Currently, HAL is the only corporation in the world that carries out such complex manufacturing operations.
India’s Air Force has a fleet of over 200 Su-30 MKIs, built HAL under Irkut’s license. The first Su-30MKI overhauled in Russia was transferred to India in January.