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Indian Defense Projects

A quick roundup of major weapon systems currently being acquired or developed by India India's regional power ambitions are dependent on its ability to develop and produce, or procure, major weapon systems for use by its armed forces. Its recent economic resurgence has allowed the country to embark on major new defense projects, and infuse life into projects that were floundering because the country's ambitions had gotten ahead of its industrial and R&D infrastructure. This document aims at providing a quick roundup of the major weapon systems being procured by India. I hope to start detailed knols on each of the projects in the days ahead. The projects listed here include Indigenous R&D projects as well as outright purchases. This is a work in progress document, and because of its nature will always remain so. I intend to update it as frequently as new developments take place so that you can be sure of getting the latest status and news on the projects listed here. Contents


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Tejas LCA Indigenous Projects

Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA)

Medium Combat Aircraft (MCA) wind tunnel model at Aero India 2009
The DRDO displayed a wind tunnel model of its Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA) twin engine fighter concept at Aero India 2009.

The 19-20 ton category fighter will feature stealth including an internal weapon bay.

For more details on the project, please see the knol Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA).

Aerostat System
DRDO has developed a state-of-the-art medium size helium filled Aerostat that is capable of carrying electro-optic and COMINT payloads for surveillance. ELINT and RADAR payloads are also being developed for the system indigenously.

For additional details on the project please see the knol Aerostat System.


Agni II
Agni-II is a two-stage solid propellant ballistic missile with a launch weight of 17 tons, a diameter of 1m and length of 20 m. It can hit targets between 1,550 and 1,860 miles away with a 2,200-pound payload.

Developed by Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO), the missile is part of the Agni series which includes Agni-I (700 km range) and Agni-III (3,500 km range).

For details on analysis please see the Agni-II Ballistic Missile knol

Agni-II+ is a two stage, solid propellant, rail and road mobile with a range of 2,750 and 3,000 km, against the 2,500 km range of teh Agni-II.

Though the missile was developed from Agni-II, DRDO describes it as a completely new missile.

Details of the missile maybe viewed at the Agni-II+ / Agni-II Plus knol.

Agni-III, is a 3,500 km range missile that is 16.7-meter tall missile and has a 50 ton lift-off weight. It is reportedly capable of carrying a 1.5 ton thermonuclear warhead with a yield of 200-250 KT.

Details of the Agni-III project maybe viewed at my knol Agni-III IRBM.

The Indian Government sanctioned Rs2,500 crore to develop the 5,000 km range Agni V missile in 2008. The missile is expected to be ready for testing in the 2010-11 time frame. (The Agni V is also referred to as Agni III+).

The Agni-V, a road mobile canisterized missile capable of carrying multiple independently targeted warheads, is a critical component of India's nuclear deterrent.

Details of missile and the current status of the project maybe viewed at my knol Agni-V.

Akash Missile

Akash SAM
The Akash is a command guided missile system that has been under development by DRDL for 25 years, and has already cost the exchequer Rs. 516.86 crore, the highest for any of India's missile systems.

The 720 kg, 5.78 m long missile has a diameter of 35 cm and a length of 5.78 meters. With a top speed of Mach 2.5, the missile can engage targets as far as 25 km away flying at heights ranging from 20m to 18kms.

Details of the project and its current development status maybe viewed at my knol Akash Missile

Arjun MBT
The Arjun is an indigenously developed 50-ton tank with a 120 mm gun that is now being inducted into service after nearly 35 years of development.

You can view details about the project on the knol Arujn MBT.

Artillery Gun 155 mm / 52 caliber

In 2011, DRDO announced that its intent to develop a 155mm / 52 caliber gun for the Indian Army.

Speaking on the occasion of DRDO Awards Function on June 3, 2011, Dr VK Saraswat, SA to RM, Secretary Defence Research and Director General DRDO said DRDO is "hoping to launch new programs for Gun Development of 155mm / 52 Caliber Artillery Gun in both stand-alone and self-propelled versions, so as to take care of future artillery requirements of the next decade."

Astra air-to-air missile

Astra is an active radar homing, Beyond Visual Range (BVR) missile being developed by Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO).

The 154kg (340lb) Astra uses active radar homing and is reportedly capable of engaging targets at 80km in the head on mode and 20km while astern.

The missile has a cruise speed of up to Mach 2.2 carrying a 20kg fragmentation warhead. It has a length of 3570 mm and a diameter of 178 mm.

For more details on the project please see my knol Astra air-to-air missile.


DRDO plans to develop a Stealth UCAV capable of releasing bombs and missile under the AURA (Autonomous Unmanned Research Aircraft) program.

The existence of the AURA program was first reported in June 2010.

The program was first officially acknowledged in April 2011 by DRDO's chief controller R&D (aeronautics) Dr Prahlada.

For more details please see the knol AURA UCAV.

Barak Missile copyright Vijainder K Thakur.

Barak 2 Missiles (MR-SAM and LR-SAM)

India and Israel are jointly developing two Air Defense Missile systems: The LR-SAM system will be deployed on IN Ships while MR-SAM will replace IAF SAM-3 Pechora missile.

For more details and current status of the projects please see the knol Barak 2 Missiles (MR-SAM and LR-SAM)

Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) System

Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) is developing a Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) system to be deployed by 2015.

The system will be based on radar technology for tracking and fire control which the DRDO developed jointly with Israel and France.

Details of the project and its current status maybe viewed at my knol Indian DRDO's Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) System

Brahmos Missile

Land Attack Cruise Missile (LACM) variant of Brahmos. (Copyright Vijainder K Thakur)


BrahMos is a supersonic cruise missile that can be launched from submarines, ships, aircraft or land. It is a joint venture between India's Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) and Russia's NPO Mashinostroeyenia who have together formed the BrahMos Aerospace Private Limited.

The Brahmos is based on the SS-NX-26 (Yakhont) missile, which was under development when the Cold War ended in 1991 after which the project ran aground because of lack of funds. India invested $240 million to complete two decades of the missile's development and contributed its inertial navigation system.

DRDO claims that the missile was jointly developed by India and Russia. However, 80 % of its components, including the liquid ramjet engine and the radar seeker, are imported in knock-down condition to be reassembled by the Russians.

You can read details of the missile and the current status of the project at the Brahmos Missile knol.

Brahmos 2
Preliminary work has also begun on the development of a hypersonic Brahmos 2 missile capable of flying at a speed between 5 and 7 Mach using a scram jet engine.

An agreement to develop the new missile was reached during a visit by Russian Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov to India in 2008.

Details of the project maybe viewed at my knol Brahmos-2

Speaking to the press at Tiruchy on Saturday, February 14, 2009, Dr A Sivathanu Pillai, CEO & MD of Brahmos Aerospace said the missile will be ready within the next five years.

Aeronautical Development Establishment (ADE), Bangalore, is developing a UCAV, which besides ISR will be able to attack ground targets like the US Predator.

The existence of the project was announced by V.K. Saraswat, scientific advisor to Defence Minister A.K. Antony, on November 24, after he inaugurated the fifth national conference on 'NextGen IT for Indian Defence'.

Details of the project maybe viewed at my knol Indian UCAV

Dhruv - Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH)

Weaponized Dhruv ALH

The Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH) program was first announced in November 1984. The helicopter was designed with assistance from Messerschmitt-Blkow-Blohm. The first prototype flew in August 1992.

For more details on the project, please see the knol Dhruv - Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH).

EMB-145 AEW&CS project

Centre for Airborne Systems (CABS), is coordinating the Rs.1,800-crore effort to develop an indigenous airborne early warning and control system (AEW&CS) to augment the three Phalcon AWACs being procured by the IAF.

The AEW&CS will comprise of an indigenous radar and control system mounted on a Brazilian Embraer EMB-145 regional jet. Under a $210 million deal signed with Brazilian aviation company Embraer in summer 2008, Embraer will supply India 3 EMB-145s with the system mounted on them.

Details of the project may be viewed at the knol EMB-145 AEW&CS Project

Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft (FGFA) / PAK-FA

A visualization of Sukhoi T 50 PAK FA Fifth Generation Fighter being co-developed by Russia and India
The FGFA is being developed by Sukhoi, which is part of Russia's United Aircraft Corporation (UAC), and India's Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), under an intergovernmental agreement signed in October 2007.

Russia and India will simultaneously develop two versions of the combat aircraft - a two-seat version to meet the requirements of India's air superiority policy, and a single-seat version for the Russian Air Force.

For details of the project see the Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft (FGFA) / PAK-FA / T-50 knol.

Indian Aircraft Carrier (IAC) Project 71 INS Vikrant

India will construct two 40,000 ton aircraft carriers at Cochin Shipyard Ltd (CSL) under the Rs 3,260 crore Project 71. The first ship of the class will be named INS Vikrant

For details of the project please see the Indian Aircraft Carrier (IAC) Project 71 knol.

INS Arihant - Advanced Technology Vessel (ATV)

India's first indigenous nuclear powered submarine was launched by Gursharan Kaur, wife of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on July 26, at Eastern Naval Command headquarters in Visakhapatnam.

INS Arihant, Destroyer of Enemies, was designed and developed under the ATV project which was given a go ahead in 1984 by then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi.

The ATV project became a serious endeavor in 1985 after Mazagaon docks began construction of two German HDW 209 class submarines in 1984.

For details on the project see Advanced Technology Vessel INS Arihant knol.

Intermediate Jet Trainer (IJT) 'Sitara' HJT-36

The IJT program was sanctioned by the government in 1999 with an initial budget of Rs.180 crore as a replacement for the HJT-16 Kiran.

For more information, please see the knol Intermediate Jet Trainer (IJT) 'Sitara' HJT-36.

Kaveri Engine
Indigenously development of Kaveri Engine to power the Tejas aircraft was sanctioned on Marc 30, 1989 with a PDC of December 31, 1996. The engine remains under development and has been dropped as a prospectivepower plant for the LCA. It is now being considered for use on the Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA).

For more information, please see the knol Kaveri Engine.

Light Combat Helicopter (LCH)

The HAL developed 5.5-ton twin engine LCH is a derivative of Dhruv ALH with tandem seating.

Like the Dhruv, LCH is powered by two Shakti engines jointly developed with France's Turbomeca.

The LCH will supplement the 22 attack helicopters that India is seeking as part of an international tender.

Details of the project maybe viewed at the knol Light Combat Helicopter (LCH)

Long Range Cruise Missile (LRCM)

DRDO is reported to be developing a 600 km range, Mach 3.2 missile.

The existence of the missile program was revealed by the blog LiveFist on September 6, 2010. There has been no official acknowledgement of the project.

For more details on the project, please see the knol Long Range Cruise Missile (LRCM)

Maitri SR-SAM

The Maitri short-range (15km,9.3mi) surface-to-air missile is a point defense system being co-developed by DRDO in collaboration with MBDA of France under a 2007 government-to-government agreement.

The missile will fill the gap created by the Indian government's decision to wind up development of the Trishul point defense missile system. It will replace the Russian-origin Pechora and OSA-AK missile systems with Air Force and the Army. Work on the missile is expected to begin by the end of this year, after an agreement with MBDA is finalized. For more details on the project, please see the knol DRDO MBDA Maitri SR-SAM.

Military Aerostats
The Hindu reported on November 1, that the DRDO is developing two types of military aerostats the first to carry military payloads up to an altitude of 1,000 metres and the second up to a height of 5,000 metres.

The 1,000-metre aerostat was has already been demonstrated to both the Army and Air Force.

According to Dr. Prahlada, Chief Controller, R & D (Aerospace and Services Interaction), the aerostats will be used for surveillance, jamming of electronic systems, intelligence data gathering and communication relay.

Nag Missile
Design work on the missile started in 1988 with the first test having been carried out in November 1990. The missile is currently being inducted into the Indian Army in limited numbers.

Nag is anti-tank missile with a 4-km range and fire-and-forget capability. The missile uses a IR seeker and has a top attack capability to strike a tank where its armor is the weakest.

Details and current status of the project maybe viewed at the knol Nag Anti Tank Missile.

Nirbhay Cruise Missile

Nirbhay (Fearless) is an intermediate-range (1000km) subsonic land-attack cruise missile that is being developed by Advanced Systems Laboratory (ASL) in Hyderabad since 2007.

For more details on the project, please see the knol Nirbhay Cruise Missile

Nishant UAV
The Nishant is capable of providing day and night battle field reconnaissance, surveillance, target tracking and localization and help correct artillery fire.

It is being developed by the Aeronautical Development Establishment (ADE), in collaboration with Defense Electronics Applications Laboratory (DEAL), Dehradun, Research & Development Establishment (Engineers), Pune and Aerial Delivery Research & Development Establishment (ADRDE), Agra.

For details about the project, please see the knol Nishant UAV

Prahaar Tactical Missile

The Prahaar is a quick reaction battle field missile with a maximum range of 150 km that is comparable to Lockheed Martin's MGM-140 Army Tactical Missile System (ATacMS) Missile.

The Prahaar missile fills the vital gap between Multi Barrel Rockets and Medium range Ballistic Missiles.

For details about the project, please see the knol Prahaar Tactical Missile

Project 15A

Three warships under this Rs 11,000 crore project are being built by Mazagaon Docks Limited (MDL) for the Indian Navy.

A follow up of Project 15 Delhi Class destroyers (INS Delhi, INS Mysore and INS Mumbai), which were based on the Soviet Kashins with elements drawn from the Godavari and Sovremenny classes, these 6,800 tons destroyers will incorporate more stealth.

Details and current status of the project maybe viewed at my knol Project 15A Stealth Destroyers

Project 15B
The Indian Government approved the the construction of four 6,800-ton destroyers by Mazagon Dock Ltd, Mumbai (MDL) in August 2010.

The Defense Acquisition Council (DAC) had cleared the project in April 2009.

There was no competitive bidding for the project which is a follow-on to the currently underway Project 15A -, construction of three Kolkata class destroyers at MDL.

Project 15B warships will differ from their predecessors in the sensor and weapon suite that they carry.

They are expected to be equipped with the 1,000 km range Nirbhay cruise missile currently under development, and the long range Barak-8 based LR-SAM AD missile system being developed with Israeli assistance.

In addition, they are expected to be more stealthy.

Construction of Project 15B destroyers will start after MDL launches the last Project 15A destroyer.

The four ships are expected to be completed in the 2012-2014 time frame.

Project 17
At a Glance

Mazagaon Docks Limited (MDL) is building 3 Indian designed stealth frigates for the Indian Navy under this project.

P 17s are based on the Project 11356 (Talwar / Krivak IV class) ships being acquired from Russia, and were designed jointly by the Naval Design Bureau (NDB) and Russia's Severnoye Project Design Bureau (Severnoye Proyektno-Konstruktorskoye Bjuro - SPKB), the designers of the N11356 frigate.

The first ship of the class, INS Shivalik, was launched on April 19, 2003. The two follow on ships - INS Sahyadri and the INS Satpura are under construction at Mazagon docks. These are expected to be finished and delivered by 2010.

INS Shivalik and its sisters are 143 metres long and 16.9 metres wide (at beam). Their stealth character diminishes physical signatures radar, infra red and sound - making it difficult for an enemy to detect and attack them. When fully armed they displace 4,900 tonnes.

Though much smaller than the Delhi class of destroyers, their weapons package is far more potent. These include the latest surface-tosurface vertical launched missiles, surface-to-air missiles and state of the art radar and communication equipment.

The ships cruise using two French-made Pielstick diesel engines. For bursts of speeds upto 30 knots they use two GE LM 25000 gas turbines.

They operate two large helicopters for surveillance and anti-submarine operations.

Project 17A
In June 2009, the Defense Acquisition Council (DAC) cleared a Rs 45,000 crore project to build seven stealth frigates using advanced manufacturing process like modular shipbuilding. The ships will be manufactured in India by the Mazagon Dock Limited, Mumbai (MDL) and the Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers (GRSE), Kolkata.

More information on the project is available at Project 17A knol.

Project 28 / Kamorta Class Corvette

Project 28 warships are anti-submarine corvettes being built at Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineering (GRSE) Calcutta.

The first ship of the class, INS Kamorta, was launched on April 29, 2010.

For more information on the project, please see the knol Project 28 / Kamorta Class Corvette.

Rustom-1 MALE

Rustom-1 is a Medium Altitude Long Endurance (MALE) Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) being developed by the Aeronautical Development Establishment (ADE), a DRDO lab engaged in R&D work in the field of aeronautics. The UAV is designed for an endurance of 14 hrs and altitude ceiling of 8000 meters.

More information on the project is available at Rustom-1 MALE knol.


ADE is developing the Rustom-H Medium Altitude Long Endurance (MALE) UAV as a replacement for Israeli Heron UAVs currently in service.

More information on the project is available at Rustom MALE UAV knol

Sagarika is a submarine-launched ballistic missile with a range of approximately 700 km (435 miles). India successfully tested the 'Sagarika' missile under the K-15 project on February 26, 2008, off the coast of Visakhapatnam from a pontoon simulating the conditions of a submarine.

India does not currently have a submarine capable of carrying the Sagarika and it's believed the missile will be integrated with the Advanced Technology Vessel (ATV), a nuclear-powered submarine that India has been working on for more than 20 years.

For more information n the project please read the knol Sagarika K-15 SLBM

Shaurya is a surface-to-surface tactical missile with a range of 600-km and a payload of about one ton for use by the Army. It can carry both conventional as well as nuclear warheads.

The solid propellant, two-staged missile is little over 10 meters in length and about half-a-meter in width. It is easily transportable, userfriendly and is stored in a canister for longer shelf life.

For more on the missile see the Shaurya Missile knol.

Tank Engine
DRDO is developing a 1500 hp tank propulsion.

Speaking on the occasion of DRDO Awards Function on June 3, 2011, Dr VK Saraswat, SA to RM, Secretary Defence Research and Director General DRDO said DRDO is "giving fresh impetus to development efforts in the area of 1500 hp tank propulsion."

Tejas LCA
The Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) project was sanctioned in 1982 with a budget of Rs 560 crore to develop a state-of-the-art fighter aircraft to replace IAF's MiG-21 fighters.

Close to Rs 6,000 crore have since been spent since but the aircraft, rechristened as Tejas, still remains under development. It is currently being tested with a substitute engine (F404-GE-IN20) and makeshift avionics package.

Details of the project and its current status maybe viewed at my knol LCA Tejas

Tejas Mk2
LCA Tejas Mk2 is being developed for use by the IAF and the IN. It will be powered by the more powerful GE-F414-INS6 engine and feature other upgrades. Minor modifications are being made to the LCA Tejas Mk1 airframe to accommodate the slightly larger engine.

For more details, please see the knol Tejas Mk2.

Unmanned Chetak Helicopter

HAL is working with Israel to convert its Chetak helicopter into an unmanned air vehicle for an Indian armed forces requirement for eight aircraft.

The order size may eventually grow to 40 aircraft.

For more details, please see the knol Unmanned Chetak Helicopter.

New Weapon System Purchases

Active Protection System for T-90 tanks

In April 2008, the Indian Army issued a Request for Proposals (RFP) worth $270 million to retrofit its 987 T-90 MBTs with an Active Protection System (APS).

The request was issued to Israel Military Industries (IMI), Rafael, BAE Systems, Raytheon, Rosoboronexport, Saab, and Germanys IBD Deisenroth Engineering

A contract would involve some 1500 systems.

Advanced Hawkeye E-2D

Northrop Grumman has proposed the sale of six Advanced Hawkeye E-2D aircraft to the Indian Navy after the Navy sent the company a request for information in 2008.

In August 2009, Northrop gave an 8 hour presentation on the latest version of the venerable Hawkeye to Indian Navy officials.

Northrop has already obtained export authorization for the sale of the aircraft to India.

Project details can be viewed at my knol Advanced Hawkeye E-2D.

Advanced Jet Trainer (AJT)

The IAF cancelled its plans to acquire an additional 40 Hawk 132 AJTs in February 2009 because of bottlenecks in the procurement of spares.

Instead, the service has floated a tender to procure a new trainer type to meet its additional requirement. Six companies have been invited to bid as follows

UKs BAe Hawk 128 Italy's Alenia for the M-346 Korea Aerospace Industries/Lockheed Martin T-50 Czech Aero Vodochody L-159 Russian Yakovlev YAK-130 Russian MiG AT Trainer

INS Chakra (Akula 2 / Nerpa) nuclear submarine

India is reported to have leased a Nerpa (Akula II) nuclear submarine from Russia under contract signed in 2004 by Russia's then-Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov during his visit to India. The price of a 10-year lease was fixed at $650 million.

The submarine is earmarked to be commissioned as INS Chakra.

For details of the project, please see INS Chakra knol.

Attack Helicopters for IAF

A request for proposals has been issued to seven companies for the supply of 22 attack helicopters for the Indian Air Force. The new helicopters will replace IAF's aging fleet of Mi-35 helicopters.

The contract, estimated to be worth $500 million, stipulates aircraft in the 2.5t-class.

The deal is expected to be finalized within two years and supply completed over the next three years.

For more details, please see my knol Attack Helicopters for IAF

Phalcon A-50EI AWACS

An IAF Phacon system mounted on a IL-76TD. Photo Credit: Beriev.com

In March 2004 India signed a $1.1 billion deal with Israel for the supply of three AWACS aircraft.

The system comprises of a Israeli Elta EL/M-2075 Phalcon Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar mounted on a IL-76.

Details of the project and its current status maybe viewed at the AWACS knol.

Barak Missiles
India inked a deal in January 2009 to purchase an additional 300 Barak missiles, at a cost of about $1.6 million each, for the Barak antiaircraft missile/aircraft systems it has already bought.

The ship-borne Barak is a short range, vertically launched quick reaction missile designed to intercept and destroy approaching anti-ship missiles. The system is built to automatically launch Barak missiles from a Rafael-made vertical launch assembly when the radar detects an anti-ship supersonic missile at a height, and sea-skimming missile at a low altitude.

The Baraks fire control system made by Elbit can automatically lock onto two incoming missiles at the same time.

The Baraks defense is capable of intercepting targets not less than 500 metres away. Its Rafael-made warhead makes up a substantial 22 per cent of the missiles almost 100 kg weight, bestowing it with a wider kill envelope.

Each Barak system (missile container, radar, computers and installation) costs about $24 million.

The only weakness of the existing Barak missile system is its limited range of 10 km / 6 miles.

Basic Trainers
The IAF plans to procure 160 basic trainers to replace the HPT-32, IAF Chief PV Naik announced during a press conference on October 1, 2009. Half the number would be purchased outright with the other half being locally produced by HAL.

For more details please see the knol Basic Trainer for IAF.

Boeing C-17 Globemaster

Boeing is reported to have briefed the IAF on the aircraft in October 2007.

In 2008 India sent Boeing a Request For Information to which the company responded. The aircraft gave impressive flying demonstrations at Aero India 2009 in Bangalore

In June 2009, the IAF projected a requirement for 10 aircraft to the government.

The Globemaster is more capable than Il-76 in terms of payload and range. It can carry 70 tons of cargo with a crew of 3, against the 45 tons carried by an IL-76 with a crew of 6.

No deal has yet been signed. Boeing C-17 Globemaster procurement knol

Boeing P-8I Poseidon Maritime Multimission Aircraft (MMA)

India inked a $2.1 billion deal with Boeing for the supply of 8 customized P-8A Poseidon Maritime Multimission Aircraft (MMA), designated P8I, for use by the Indian Navy.

It is the biggest ever defense deal between India and the US, surpassing the 2007 $962 million deal for the supply of six C-130J 'Super Hercules' aircraft for Indian special forces. Please click on the link below for more details on this project Boeing p-8i Poseidon Maritime Multimission Aircraft (MMA)

C-130J Super Hercules Special Ops Aircraft

India signed a deal with US DOD in 2008 to purchase six Lockheed Martin C-130Js for $596 million. The aircraft, to be used by Indian special forces, are currently under construction with the first plane set for delivery in January 2011.

Please click on the link below for more details on the project.

C-130J Super Hercules Transport Aircraft

EL/M-2083 Aerostat radars

The IAF currently operates two EL/M-2083 Aerostat radars acquired under a $145 million deal with Israel in 2004-2005.

The Indian Navy is set to acquire five EL/M-2083 radars from Israel to fill vital gaps in the coastal security and the IAF four more.

The tethered EL/M-2083 phased array radar is mounted on a blimp that can hover up to 13,000 feet. Developed and manufactured by Israel Aerospace Industries' Elta Systems Group (IAI/Elta), the radar is a simpler version of the Green Pine radar, made by IAI and used by the Arrow missile defense system.

Data gathered by the radar is transmitted to a central air defense command & control center where it is used to maintain an extended comprehensive air situation picture.

Each system is reportedly capable of providing 3-D coverage in a radius of 500 km, which is roughly equivalent to the coverage that would be provided by 30 ground based radars.

According to IAI, the system is designed to detect hostile approaching aircraft from long ranges, especially those flying at low altitudes.

Pakistan is reported to be getting six L-88 Aerostat Systems from the US.

HAROP Loitering Munition (LM) System

The Indian Air Force will reportedly acquire 10 Harop loitering drones from Malat, the UAV division of Israel Aerospace Industries, under a $100 million deal.

The Harops will be inducted into service by 2011.

Details of the project maybe viewed at the knol HAROP Loitering Munition (LM) System.

Heron II UAV

Under a $220 million deal IAI sold 50 Heron II UAVs to India. In the past Israel has sold IAI-Malat built Searcher and Searcher II.

INS Vikramaditya
Under a contract signed in January 2004, Russia's Rosoboronexport was to deliver the 44,570-tonne aircraft carrier, Admiral Gorshkov, to India in 2008. The $1.5 billion contract earmarked $964 billion for the Gorshkov and $536 million for the complement of 16 MiG-29K fighter aircraft on board.

The Admiral Gorshkov was laid down in 1978 at the Nikolayev South shipyard in Ukraine, launched in 1982, and commissioned with the Soviet Navy in 1987 as Baku.

It was renamed after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.

In 1994, following a boiler room explosion, the Admiral Gorshkov sat in dock for a year for repairs. After a brief return to service in 1995, she was finally withdrawn from service in 1996 and put up for sale.

The contract covers complete overhaul of the ship, which had remained docked at the Sevmash shipyard in northern Russia for the past 12

years, fitting a ski jump take off, and equipping it with modern weaponry, including MiG-29K Fulcrum aircraft and Ka-27 Helix-A and Ka-31 Helix-B anti-submarine helicopters.

After modernization, the carrier is expected to be seaworthy for 30 years.

More details of this project can be viewed at the INS Vikramaditya / Admiral Gorshkov knol

Hawk AJT
India signed a $1.75 billion contract for the delivery of 66 BAE Systems HAWK Mk132s under the AJT (Advanced Jet Trainer) program in March 2004, after two decades of negotiations.

Under the deal, twenty four aircraft were delivered directly from the UK, with 42 to be license-manufactured in India by HAL by March 2011 from semi and completely knocked down kits - progressively using indigenous components.

Details and current status of the project may be viewed at my knol at Hawk Mk.132 AJT.

Heavy Lift Helicopters

India invited bids for for 15 heavy-lift helicopters in May 2009. Along with the 22 Attack Helicopters being procured, the bid is valued at $2 billion.

Proposals for the combat helicopters have to be submitted by September 22 and those for the heavy-lift helicopters a day after.

For details about the project, please see the knol Heavy Lift Helicopters for IAF.

Kamov Ka-31 Surveillance Helicopters for Navy

The Cabinet Committee on Security approved a deal worth Rs 950 crore for acquisition of five Russian Kamov-31 early-warning helicopters for the Indian Navy on August 4, 2009. A contract is expected to be finalized within a month.

The helicopters are equipped with the E-801M Oko (Eye) airborne electronic warfare radar mounted beneath the fuselage. A Ka-31 can simultaneously track up to 40 airborne and surface threats, with a 360 degree coverage, from 100 to 200 km away depending on the target's size.

Navy already has nine Ka-31 helicopters, inducted in 2003-2004, which operate from its solitary aircraft carrier INS Viraat and three Talwarclass "stealthy" guided-missile frigates as well as shore-based air stations.

Krivak IV Missile Frigates (Project 11356)

The Indian Navy currently opearates three Russian Krivak-class stealth frigates. They are INS Talwar (2002), Trishul (2003) and Tabar (Jul 2004).

India and Russia signed a $1.6 billion contract for the construction of an additional three Project 11356 Krivak IV-class guided missile frigates for the Indian Navy in July, 2006.

Details of the project maybe viewed at the knol Project 11356 Missile Frigates

Light Tanks for High Altitude Operations

The Indian Army wants to equip its 12 Mountain Divisions (10 existing and 2 under raising) with light armor for use at high altitude in mountainous terrain such as J&K, Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh.

In October 2009, the MOD issued a RFP for 300 light tanks having protection against nuclear, chemical and biological warfare, following heightened border tensions with China.

The tanks are expected to weigh around 22 tonnes and be capable of operating at heights of over 3,000 metres in hilly terrain. They must be capable of engaging enemy Main Battle Tanks from a distance of more than 2 km using HE shells and guided missiles.

Light Utility Helicopters

India issued a request for proposals for 197 military Light Utility Helicopters (LUH) in July 2008, to replace its existing fleet of Chetak and Cheetah helicopters.

The procurement is valued at up to $750 million with a 30% offset clause.

Details of the project and its progress maybe viewed at the knol Light Utility and Observation Helicopters

Light Utility Helicopters for Navy

In April 2010, India issued a request for information (RFI) for the purchase 50 light utility helicopters to replace the Chetak helicopters currently in service with the Indian Navy.

The helicopters are required for search and rescue, casualty evacuation, limited observation and surveillance and anti-submarine warfare tasks, as well as anti-piracy and anti-terrorism activities.

Qualitative Requirements
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Twin-engine, dual seat cockpit controls but single pilot operation and advanced integrated avionics. All-up weight of not more than 4,500kg (9,920lb) Capable of carrying at least one lightweight torpedo or two depth charges Provision for mounting 12.7mm machine guns and/or a rocket launcher on either side of the aircraft. Must also be able to carry at least four passengers and come with rappelling equipment, rescue winches and be capable of carrying underslung loads.

The RFI was sent to France's Eurocopter, Italy's AgustaWestland, the United States' Bell Helicopter and Russia's Kamov Co.

Vendors are required to deliver the helicopters ASAP

The requirement is in addition to the procurement of 384 light utility helicopters for the the IAF and Indian Army, initiate in 2009.

M777 Towed Howitzer for Indian Army

The government authorized the purchase of 145 ultra-light M777 towed howitzers from the US in January 2010. The 155mm guns, with a range of up to 40 kms, will equip mountain artillery divisions deployed at high altitudes along the LAC and LOC. For details of the project please see the knoll M777 Towed Howitzer for Indian Army.

Medium Multi Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA)

MMRCA contender F-16 IN

The Government of India issued a Request for Proposal (RFP) for the purchase of 126 Medium Multi Role Combat Aircraft on August 28, 2007.

The order is valued at approximately US$10 billion.

All the aircraft are required to be of the same type with one squadron (18 aircraft) being formed of aircraft supplied by the vendor, and the rest produced under license in India by HAL.

The RFP lays down that the first aircraft is supplied within 36 months of the contract being signed and the 18th within 48 months. The 19th aircraft, the first to be assembled in India, will come within 54 months. Thereafter, there will be an incremental increase with the last aircraft to be delivered by 2020.

For details and latest news on the project you can go to the knol below

Medium Multi Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA) for IAF

Medium Range Loitering Missile System

The Indian Army has projected a requirement for missiles that can loiter over a target for up to 30 minutes sending critical data over a link before striking.

A Global Request for Information (RFI) for Medium Range Loitering Missile System has been issued in March 2010.

The Defence Ministry has sought details from the vendors on the missile's cruising speed, the maximum range at which it can engage a target, its loitering time, the range of its data link, its accuracy, ability to attack from the top, and if it can abort after locking onto a target and be redesignated to a new target.

Mi-17I from Russia

Initial Order: 80 Additional Order: 59 Order Status: Deliveries to start from end of 2010

During Russian President Dmitry Medvedev's visit to India in December 2008, the two countries inked a deal for the supply of 80 Mi-17I medium lift helicopters at a cost of $1.2 billion. The two countries had earlier negotiated a price of $650 million, but early in 2008 Russia asked for a revision of the contract price.

IAF will get the helicopters between 2010 and 2014. The deal also envisages a $405 million "offset" obligation by Russia.

The new choppers, which have an 18,000 ft operational ceiling, will replace 50 Mi-8s currently in service with the IAF, some of which are over 35 years old, and boost IAF's capability to support high-altitude posts in Siachen and Ladakh sectors.

The helicopter will come with the circuitry and hard points to carry weapons.

At Aero India 2009 in Bangalore Rosoboronexport, Viktor Komardin, confirmed that the helicopters would be delivered as scheduled in 2010.

"We hope that the first helicopter will be delivered to India at the start of 2010," he said.

He previously said the first helicopter would be delivered to India before the end of 2009.

The remaining helicopters are expected to be delivered over a four year period.

Additional Order
The IAF is set to order an additional 59 Russian Mil Mi-17I helicopters, on top of the 80 ordered earlier, the IAF chief said on Thursday, August 19, 2010.

In September 2010, PTI reported that additional order had already been cleared by the Defence Acquisition Council and will be put up for Cabinet Committee on Security clearance soon.

Micro-UAV Systems for Indian Army

The Indian army is expected to release a Request for Proposal for 500 mini- and micro-UAV systems in the first quarter of 2011.

For additional details please see the knol Micro-UAV Systems for Indian Army

Medium Range Maritime Reconnaissance (MRMR) Aircraft

A request for proposal (RFP) for supply of six Medium Range Maritime reconnaissance (MRMR) aircraft was floated by India's Ministry of Defense in June 2008.

The new aircraft, which will replace the aging fleet of 12 Islander aircraft in service, are to be equipped with an Airborne Early Warning system. The Indian Coast Guard has an additional requirement for six MRMRs without an Airborne Early Warning system.

The MRMR is required to have a range of 500 nautical miles and an endurance of 6 hours.

Bids against the RFP were received from Boeing (P-8, a variant of P-8I), Russian Illyushin (IL-38 variant), French Dassault (Falcon 900MPA), EADS (Case C-295) and Israel's Elta System electronics (Gulfstream 550 mounted EL/W-2085). .

India has since cancelled the RFPs, Flight magazine reported in December 2009.

"The defense ministry and the navy had asked for the proposals, but they withdrew the tender a few months ago," an industry source close to the ministry told the magazine. "There is no indication of when a fresh tender will be issued, although it appears as though this procurement has gone down in the navy's list of priorities."

Following the Mumbai attacks, it was reported that India is attempting to speed up the procurement of MRMR.

"Bids were submitted by the contenders in November last year before the Mumbai attacks. But with an urgency to fill the gaps in security of coastal areas, the acquisition process for these aircraft will be hastened," Defence Ministry sources told media.

"Right now the bids submitted by the contenders are being evaluated by the Technical Evaluation Committee (TEC) of the Defence Ministry. By the end of this month, these companies are expected to submit their offset proposals to the Ministry," they said.

Multi-Role Helicopter (MRH) program

India has invited request for information for 16 Multi-Role Helicopter (MRH) to replace its fleet of aging Sea King helicopters. The program is valued at $ 1 billion.

The helicopters, to be equipped for inflight refuelling, are required to have anti-submarine and surface warfare capability as their primary mission. Capable of ferrying 15 soldiers, the 10 ton helicopters are expected to be armed with cruise missiles and lightweight torpedoes for advanced anti-ship and anti-submarine warfare capabilities

Also required is a secondary mission capability of anti-ship surveillance and targeting, search and resuce, medical evacuation and logistics missions from naval vessels.

A Request for Proposal was issued in 2009

Amongst those bidding are

Sikorsky: S-70B Seahawk as a commercial direct sale. European NH Industries: NH90, Lockheed: MH-60R as US government Foreign Military Sale Rosoboronexport: Ka-226T

The final requirement could reach 60 helicopters.

US FMS Sale Proposal Turned Down

On February 17, 2011, it was reported that a proposal by the US Navy to sell its MH-60 Romeo helicopter against the requirement through an inter-governmental agreement had been rejected by MOD.

Multi Role Tanker Transport (MRTT)

India's MOD issued a request for proposals (RFP) for delivery of six Multi Role Tanker Transport (MRTT) in 2007. The RFP stipulates deliveries of the new tankers to begin three years after contract signature.

EADS subsidiary Airbus has offered the A330-200-in a three-hose configuration and Russia's United Aircraft (UAC) has offered a more advanced version of the Ilyushin Il-78 Midas tanker, 12 of which are in service with the IAF.

Details of the project maybe viewed at the knol Multi Role Tanker Transport (MRTT)

Multi Role Transport Aircraft (MTA)

The Multirole Medium Aircraft (MTA) project was initiated by Russia's Ilyushin in 1996. It is also referred to as Il-214 Ilyushin and "IndoRussian Transport Aircraft (IRTA) or MRTA by its Indian partner HAL. Russia and India entered into negotiations for the co-development of the aircraft in 1999. An agreement was signed in June 2001 between Ilyushin, Irkut and HAL.

Click on the link below for more details

Multi Role Transport Aircraft

Project 75
The project was approved in 2002 and is aimed at acquiring national competence in submarine building. It envisages building 24 submarines over the next 30 years.

Project 75 Scorpene Submarine Acquisition

Scorpene Submarine
Six Scorpene submarines, to be built at Mazagon Dock Ltd (MDL) shipyard under a transfer of technology agreement with Frances DCNS, will be delivered to Indian Navy under Project 75.

The submarines are being acquired under a 2.4 billion eur contract signed in 2005 and will be commissioned in the Navy from 2013 through 2018.

The 1750 ton displacement Scorpene is 67 meters long and equipped with six 21 inch torpedo tubes that can launch 12 torpedoes or antiship missiles.

Additional details of the project and its current status maybe viewed at my knol Project 75 Scorpene Acquisition.

Project 75A
India will follow up its acquisition of six Scorpene submarines under Project 75 with an additional six AIP equipped subs under Project 75A.

India floated a request for information under the project in 2008, defining the scope of the order.

"They will also have high degree of stealth, land-attack capability and ability to incorporate futuristic technologies. Like the Scorpenes, they will be built in an Indian shipyard, public or private, with special emphasis on full transfer of technology," said a source.

Foreign vendors being considered for supplying the subs are Russias Rosoboronexport, Frances DCNS, Germanys HDW and Spain's Navantia.

The TOI reported on July 11, 2010 that the Defence Acquisitions Council (DAC), chaired by defence minister A K Antony, had decided that three of the six submarines will be constructed at Mazagon Docks (MDL) in Mumbai and one at Hindustan Shipyard Ltd (HSL) in Visakhapatnam, with the help of a foreign collaborator.

"The other two submarines will either be imported from the foreign vendor directly or constructed at a private shipyard in India. Fresh estimates show each of these six diesel-electric submarines will cost almost Rs 8,500 crore," a source said.

Additional details on the project maybe viewed at the knol Project 75A / 75I

QR-SAM systems for Indian Army

The MOD reportedly released a RFI on Friday, January 29, 2010 for procuring quick reaction surface-to-air missiles for the Army.

The RFI does not specify the number of missiles systems to be procured.

Details of the procurement maybe viewed at my knol QR-SAM for Indian Army

India is buying 18 low-level quick-reaction missile systems, SpyDer (Surface-to-air Python and Derby), from Israel for around Rs 1,800 crore. Deliveries will start in early 2011 and be completed by August 2012.

The Spyder-SR slant-launched SHORAD system and the Spyder-MR vertical-launched medium range system are designed to protect against attack aircraft, combat helicopters, bombers, UAVs and UCAVs and stand off weapons. Both systems use Rafael's Derby, air-to-air active radar, beyond visual range (BVR) missile and Python 5, air-to-air dual band imaging infrared (IIR) missile. The system is unique in that it is able combine the use of these two missiles in any given mission.

For more on this project please see the knol SpyDer ADS-SR Missile System for Indian Air Force

Su-30 MKI

India purchased 50 Su-30K aircraft from Sukhoi in Russia in 1996 and acquired a license to manufacture an additional 140 fighters at HAL.

In January 2009, India ordered an additional 40 Su-30MKIs from Russia.

For details and current status of the project please see the knol Su-30MKI

T-90S Bheeshma Main Battle Tank

A $795 million dollar transfer of technology agreement was inked on February 15, 2001, between the Government of India and the Federal State Unitary Enterprise State Corporation Rosvoorouzhenic of the Russian Federation.

Russia shipped 124 T-90 tanks to India off the shelf. Another 186 were supplied in semi-knocked-down condition for assembly in Avadibased Heavy Vehicles Factory (HVF) near Chennai.

In a follow up TOT agreement signed in 2006, Russia agreed to transfer technology for the license production of 1,000 additional tanks in India through 2020.

However, Russia pussyfooted on the TOT part of the agreement and production never started, forcing India to resort to the outright purchase of an additional 330 tanks in November 2007 to cover a gap in its military capabilities.

According to the DRDO, each of the Indian-built tanks would cost up to 150 million rupees ($3 million).


A first batch of 10 indigenously built T-90 Bhisma tanks was handed over to the Army on Monday, August 24, by the Heavy Vehicles Factory in Chennai. *** The first indigenous manufactured T-90 tank will roll out August 24, IANS reported in early August 2009 quoting an unnamed defense ministry official.

*** In July 2009, Indian Defense Minister AK Antony told parliament that the supply of T-90 Tanks through indigenous production of components will commence from 2009 to 2010.


Antonov An-32 Upgrade

In June 2009, India signed a $400 million agreement with Ukraine's Ukrspetsexport to upgrade its fleet of 105 AN-32 aircraft to extend its life and improve its avionics.

Forty An-32s will be upgraded at designer certified plants in Ukraine, with 10 aircraft being upgraded annually.

The remaining 64 An-32s will be upgraded at IAF's No. 1 Base Repair Depot (BRD) at Kanpur using material and ToT by Ukraine.

The upgrade at Kiev is expected to be completed by March 2014 and upgrade at 1 BRD by March 2017.

The upgraded An-32 will be referred to as AN-32 RE

The upgrades will extend the life of the aircraft from 25 years to 40 years. The Antonov website additionally claims the upgrades will increase maximum takeoff weight and flight range. Max payload will go up from 6.7 tonnes to 7.5 tonnes and the cockpit noise and vibration will also be reduced, enhancing crew comfort, reliability and maintainability of the aircraft

In addition, An-32 REs will have new radars with MFDs, air collision avoidance system, ground proximity warning system, satellite navigation, distance measuring equipment, upgraded radio altimeters, new oxygen systems and improved crew seats.

Upgrade Progress
In end May 2011 Antonov handed India five upgraded An-32s.

Re-induction of Upgraded An-32s

Four of the first batch of five upgraded AN-32s were re-inducted as An-32 REs into the IAF on June 8, 2011.

Air Marshal Joseph Neri, Air Officer-in-charge Maintenance inducted the aircraft at a brief ceremony at Palam airbase. DG (Aircraft), Air Mshl RK Vashisht, senior MOD and IAF officials, representatives of M/S Spets Techno Export (STE) from Ukraine and aircrew that flew in the aircraft from Kiev was among those present at the ceremony.

Speaking on the occasion, Air Marshal Neri said the re-equipped AN-32 RE aircraft will fulfill tactical transport requirements of the IAF up to and beyond 2025.

AN-32, a twin-engine turboprop, was acquired from the erstwhile Soviet Union. They were made by Antonov, based in Ukraine.

Similar to the An-26, the An-32 has more powerful engines mounted higher on the wing. It can operate from airfields up to 14,800ft (4,500m) above sea level as well as in hot conditions.

Antonov Website

MiG-29 Upgrade - MiG-29 (UPG)

In March 2008 Russia's RAC-MiG signed a $850 million contract with the Indian Defense Ministry to modernize 62 MiG-29 fighters (54 fighters and 8 trainers).

Service Life Extension

The upgrade will allow the IAF to extend the life of the MiG-29 from the present 25 years (and 2,500 hours) to 40 years (3,500 hours).

Improved Combat Capabilities

The modernization will improve the aircraft's air-to-ground attack capability and give pilots better BVR capability.

The current N-109 radar will be replaced by the multifunction Phazatron Zhuk-M radar.

The Zhuk-M radar introduces advanced air to surface functions like mapping, moving target location and terrain following.

The aircraft will be fitted with an aerial refueling probe allowing for extended range and airborne tim.

Upgrade Timeline
Six aircraft are to be upgraded by RAC-MiG in Russia and the remaining at IAFs 11 Base Repair Depot (BRD) in Nasik using kits supplied by RAC-MiG.

The first upgraded MiG-29 was scheduled to fly into India in March 2010. Fourteen aircraft were scheduled to roll out of 11BRD between April 2010 and March 2011. The upgrade program is to be completed by 2013.

However MIG officials told The Hindu in end July 2009 that there will be a delay of at least eight months in the arrival of the first upgraded aircraft.

The Russians hold the IAF responsible for the delay saying it has not finalized the buyer furnished equipment.

IAF was to provide RAC MiG the list of equipment and their actual physical dimensions that they want fitted on the upgraded MiG-29s. Many of these items are to be sourced or integrated by Indian companies.

As of August 1, 2011, none of the six MiG-29UPG had been delivered.

MiG-29 (UPG) Test Flight

Russia's MiG corporation carried out the first test fight of a MiG-29 fighter modernized under the upgrade contract (MiG29UPG) on February 4, 2010.

"The flight lasted for an hour and was flawless," MiG said in a statement.

The first lot of the 62 upgraded Russian-built aircraft will be deployed at Adampur air base in the border state of Punjab, a Defence Ministry official said in October 2009.

Ref: MiG-29 upgrade programme delayed

MiG-29 Engine Upgrade

A deal to upgrade IAF MiG-29s with the RD-33 Series 3 engines was finalized on January 24, 2007 between the engine manufacturer Klimov and HAL.

Under the $250 million contract singed by Russian Defense Minister Ivanov, Klimov was to establish a production line at HAL for 120 upgraded RD-33 engines. The deal involved complete transfer of technology.

The Series 3 engine features cooled blades of modern materials. At 1100 kg it is slightly heavier than the 1055 kg RD-33 engine, and

produces a max thrust of 9,000 kg with afterburning, against 8,300 kgf of the RD-33.

It is built to western standards and reportedly has a 4,000 hour service life. The engine contains systems that reduce its infrared and optical visibility.

The RD-33 engine has a SFC of 2.1 kg/kgf/hr in afterburner, 0.77 military

Repair and maintenance is made easy through the use of an information and diagnostics system (IDS).

RD-33MK (Sea Wasp), an improved version of RD-33, powers the MiG-35, which is competing in the MMRCA flyoff currently underway. It also powers the MiG-29K being supplied to the Indian Navy.

A version of RD-33 can be fitted with Thrust Vector Control (TVN). However, TVN requires significant modification to the controls of an aircraft.

Incidentally, RD-93, which powers the JF-17 manufactured in Pakistan with assistance from China, is a version of the RD-33.

Ref: Klimov

News Rosoboronexport and HAL signed a deal at the MAKS-2009 on August 21 for delivery of 26 RD-33 series 3 engines to India, marking the start of the license manufacture / TOT program.

Indian Navy Kilo Class Submarine Upgrade

The Indian Navy (IN) is in the process of upgrading its 10 Kilo class submarines under a deal signed in 2001.

Each upgrade costs $80 million and involves a complete overhaul of the submarine and its hull structures; installation of an improved control system, sonar, electronic warfare system, and an integrated weapon control system.

Additional details and current status of the project may be viewed at my knol Indian Navy Kilo Class Submarine Upgrade

Su-30 MKI Modernization

In June, 2010, a deal to modernize the initial batch of Su-30s delivered to India by Russia was finalized.

The aircraft are due for major overhaul and Russia has proposed incorporation of the latest technologies during the major overhaul.

For more details on the project please see the knol Su-30MKI Acquisition

Mirage 2000 Upgrade

India and France have been negotiating since 2007 to upgrade IAF's Mirage 2000 fleet.

The upgrade envisages a strip down of the entire airframe to extend its life by another 20 years, and to re-wire and re-equip the aircraft with new avionics, mission computers, glass cockpits, helmet-mounted display and electronic warfare suites to support a contemporary weapon suit.

For more details, please see the knol Mirage 2000 Upgrade.