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Sukhoi Su-30MKI

Sukhoi Su-30MKI :

Sukhoi Su-30MKI[3] (NATO reporting name: Flanker-H) is a twinjet Multirole Air superiority fighter developed by Russia's Sukhoi and built under licence by India's Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) for the Indian Air Force (IAF). A variant of the Sukhoi Su-30, it is a heavy, all-weather, long-range fighter.

Development of the variant started after India signed a deal with Russia in 2000 to manufacture 140 Su-30 fighter jets. The first Russian-made Su-30MKI variant was accepted into the Indian Air Force in 2002, while the first indigenously assembled Su-30MKI entered service with the IAF in 2004.[6] Additional MKIs have been ordered to increase the total to 272. The IAF had 200 Su-30MKIs in service as of August 2014.[1] The Su-30MKI is expected to form the backbone of the Indian Air Force's fighter fleet to 2020 and beyond.

The aircraft is tailor-made for Indian specifications and integrates Indian systems and avionics as well as French and Israeli sub-systems. It has abilities similar to the Sukhoi Su-35 with which it shares many features and components.

The Su-30MKI was designed by Russia's Sukhoi Corporation beginning in 1995 and built under licence by India's Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL). The Su-30MKI is derived from the Sukhoi Su-27 and has a fusion of technology from the Su-37 demonstrator and Su-30 program,[13] In 2012, Dr Carlo Kopp[undue weight? – discuss] wrote the Su-30MKI is more advanced than the Su-30MK and the Chinese Su-30MKK/MK2.[13] Russia's Defence Ministry was impressed with the type's performance envelope and ordered 30 Su-30SMs, a localised Su-30MKI, for the Russian Air Force.[14] It features state of the art avionics developed by Russia, India and Israel for display, navigation, targeting and electronic warfare; France and South Africa provided other avionics.[15][16]

After two years of evaluation and negotiations, on 30 November 1996, India signed a US$1.462 billion deal with Sukhoi for 50 Russian-produced Su-30MKIs in five batches. The first batch were eight Su-30MKs, the basic version of Su-30. The second batch were to be 10 Su-30Ks with French and Israeli avionics. The third batch were to be 10 Su-30MKIs featuring canard foreplanes. The fourth batch of 12 Su-30MKIs and final batch of 10 Su-30MKIs were to have the AL-31FP turbofans.

In October 2000, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed for Indian licence-production of 140 Su-30MKIs; in December 2000, a deal was sealed at Russia's Irkutsk aircraft plant for full technology transfer. The first Nasik-built Su-30MKIs were to be delivered by 2004, with staggered production until 2017–18. In November 2002, the delivery schedule was expedited with production to be completed by 2015.[17] An estimated 920 AL-31FP turbofans are to be manufactured at HAL's Koraput Division, while the mainframe and other accessories are to be manufactured at HAL's Lucknow and Hyderabad divisions. Final integration and test flights of the aircraft are carried out at HAL's Nasik Division.[18] Four manufacturing phases were outlined with progressively increasing Indian content: Phase I, II, III and IV. In phase I, HAL manufactured the Su-30MKIs from knocked-down kits, transitioning to semi knocked-down kits in phase II and III; in phase IV, HAL produced aircraft from scratch from 2013 onwards.[19]

In 2007, another order of 40 Su-30MKIs was placed. In 2009, the planned fleet strength was to be 230 aircraft.[20] In 2008, Samtel HAL Display Systems (SHDS), a joint venture between Samtel Display Systems and HAL, won a contract to develop and manufacture multi-function avionics displays for the MKI.[21] A helmet mounted display, Topsight-I, based on technology from Thales and developed by SHDS will be integrated on the Su-30MKI in the next upgrade. In March 2010, it was reported that India and Russia were discussing a contract for 42 more Su-30MKIs.[22] In June 2010, it was reported that the Cabinet Committee on Security had cleared the ₹15000 crore (US$2.3 billion) deal and that the 42 aircraft would be in service by 2018.
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