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Ideas about the JF-17 Block-III’s HMD/S
June 23, 2017
The BAE Systems Striker II HMD/S. Photo credit: BAE Systems

Ideas about the JF-17 Block-III’s HMD/S

 

We touched on the Pakistan Air Force (PAF)’s plans for a helmet-mounted display and sight (HMD/S) system for the JF-17 in our article overviewing the Block-III, but we did not go into a lot of specific detail into how the PAF might fulfill its requirement. For some background, the JF-17 Block-III is being slotted as a significant upgrade of the Thunder, especially in terms of its radar and other onboard electronics. One of the key subsystems being planned for the JF-17 Block-III is an HMD/S, which in turn is expected to be able to cue a fifth-generation high off-boresight (HOBS) within-visual-range air-to-air missile (WVRAAM).

With Pakistani officials reportedly referring to the JF-17 Block-III as a “game changer,” it is obvious that there is a fair bit of excitement and momentum being driven towards the upgrade. This is not surprising considering that the subsystems being sought for the Block-III are of the same technological cut as those found on the industry’s leading platforms, such as the JAS-39E/F Gripen NG. Granted, the Block-III will not be a “cheap” route, but in comparison to many of the alternatives, it will still be among the most cost-effective, especially given the capabilities that are expected to be on offer.

We will take a look at some of the JF-17 Block-III’s other planned subsystems – such as the active electronically-scanned array (AESA) radar – in the future, but we will begin with the HMD/S, and for good reason. Believe it or not, the pursuit of the HMD/S actually predates the Block-III, the PAF had planned to integrate it onto the JF-17 as far back as at least 2008! In fact, an official documentary about the JF-17 Thunder even displayed an image (which could not be found elsewhere) of what seems to have been a Denel Archer helmet-mounted sight (HMS) system paired with a MBU-5/P oxygen mask (which was the standard-issue oxygen mask for PAF fighter pilots at the time)

It is apparent that something was tested very early on, but it did not pan out. Why? One can only speculate to be honest, but it may have been due to cost-control (the late 2000s and early 2010s were a particularly bad economic period), or perhaps due to a lack of readily available options off-the-shelf. Even the Archer (which no longer exists as a product) could have been legacy technology in comparison to systems such as the Joint Helmet Mounted Cueing System (JHMCS), which was being integrated onto the PAF’s F-16s via the Block-52+ acquisition and Mid-Life Update (MLU) programs.

Whatever the actual reason, the PAF had decided to push the integration of an HMD/S to the JF-17 Block-III, and this was officially confirmed during the Paris Air Show by Air Vice Marshal (AVM) Arshad Malik, the Chief Project Director of the JF-17 program.[1] In terms of what this HMD/S system would look like, where it would come from, its technology, and its capabilities, this has not been disclosed; but we will speculate.

Before looking at the specific options available to the PAF, it is important get an understanding of how the PAF will likely approach its requirement. It is incredibly unlikely that there will be a straightforward off-the-shelf purchase, not without some meaningful measure of technology transfer anyways. Simply put, one of the key objectives behind the JF-17 is to maintain control: control over the platform, control over the air-to-air and air-to-surface munitions one wishes to integrate onto the platform, and control over the integration of the various subsystems (e.g. radar, data-link, etc) being used, etc.

The PAF is not going to simply buy a solution whereby it is forced to depend on a limited set of suppliers for compatible munitions, such as HOBS WVRAAM. During the Paris Air Show, AVM Arshad Malik noted the South African-Brazilian A-Darter as a HOBS WVRAAM option for the JF-17, not the Diehl BGT IRIS-T or MBDA MICA-IR. However, in their quest to vertically integrate customers, some vendors may try to push the PAF towards certain routes with their solutions as opposed to others, and this unfortunately will pull the PAF away from one of the JF-17’s underlying goals – control over the platform.

It is for this reason that we believe that the PAF will not acquire a readymade off-the-shelf solution, at least not without a sufficient level of technology transfer and control over the end product. Although it may be a costlier route, the PAF may prefer pairing up with an external partner (likely China, potentially others) to develop a bespoke or custom solution, one tailored for the JF-17 Thunder.

Granted, this route will be more expensive relative to simply picking up an existing solution, but taking this route will grant the PAF the highest level of authority over the final product. In turn, this will enable the PAF to freely pair the system to the air-to-air and air-to-surface munitions of its choice, and to export it without necessarily worrying about restrictions or regulatory hurdles on the part of an external party.

Another point worth considering is that while securing a custom solution may be more expensive in comparison to off-the-shelf HMD/S, compared to developing other areas of a modern multi-role fighter, it may not be expensive in comparative terms. As a reference, consider that Saab spent about $54 million U.S. to secure the Cobra HMD for use on the JAS-39C/D Gripen. For the PAF, this is simply a scenario where it will be immensely beneficial for it to simply put down the funds it needs to acquire a custom (and locally produced) HMD/S. The payoff would come from the ability to integrate the munitions and optic systems (e.g. night-vision) of its choice, and the freedom to offer flexible configurations to prospective customers.

It would be worth studying the options potentially available to the PAF for the JF-17 Block-III. Note, this list is not a suggestion of the partners the PAF ought to work with, our recommendations are limited to the PAF’s general method (described above), not the specifics. The following are off-the-shelf options.

Thales TopOwl-F

Air Marshal Muhammad Ashfaque Arain’s statements about the PAF wanting to acquire the Damocles targeting pod for use with the JF-17 could open the door to other conversations. The Thales TopOwl-F is a fairly mature HMD/S platform, one that has also been adapted for use on helicopters (including the AH-1Z the Pakistan Army is in the process of acquiring). While a seemingly good system (it is widely adopted after all), there are many unclear aspects to the system, especially in light of the PAF’s requirements. For example, would Thales be amenable to enabling the PAF integrate its choice of weapon systems to the helmet? Would Pakistan be able to acquire the TopOwl-F with the requisite technology transfer to locally produce the system? And there is the obvious issue of cost, which can be a problem with French vendors.

In 2013, Thales also acquired Visionix, an American firm specializing in developing HMD/S solutions for the U.S. armed forces. Thales Visionix’s Scorpion Helmet-Mounted Cueing System (HMCS), which is a very interesting concept since it is basically a modular add-on for standard-issue HGU-55/P helmets (which is also the standard-issue helmet in the PAF). Unfortunately, this is not technology that is going to be cleared for Pakistan and the JF-17. As a general point, Thales has a lot of interesting work under its belt, but in the case of the PAF, a lot of it is inaccessible (in financial and/or regulatory terms). To be frank, it is unlikely the PAF is going to go the Thales route in terms of its HMD/S requirements, though a marginal possibility may be there provided its requirements, terms, and financial capacities are met – unlikely.

BAE Striker II

The BAE Striker II is among the newest options available on the market today. It is a development of the original Striker (which served as the basis for the Saab Cobra HMD). At present, the Striker II is being produced for the Eurofighter Typhoon.

However, like France, accessing the Striker II would depend on the PAF’s success in receiving clearance from the British government. But given that a Finmeccanica Vixen AESA radar is being considered for the JF-17 Block-III’s radar requirement, it is possible that acquiring the necessary clearance may not be an issue. While an Italian company, Finmeccanica’s AESA radar work is primarily done by its British subsidiary Selex ES. It is unlikely that either party would make contact with the JF-17 program without having confidence in Rome and London to OK a sale, should it come to fruition.

There are other potential hurdles as well. Britain may have a stake in wanting to push the MBDA Advanced Short Range Air-to-Air Missile (ASRAAM) with the Striker II. That said, the stake may not be as strong as it might be in regards to France, the British defence industry is comparatively more flexible when it comes to working around the specific needs of its customers. It would be an interesting route, especially if the Finmeccanica/Selex ES route is taken for the JF-17 Block-III’s radar and avionics.

However, we will put this in the “unlikely” category, just too many unknowns at the moment in terms of where the PAF stands in its relationship with BAE Systems.

As one might notice, the off-the-shelf route is not as straightforward as it might seem, especially in the context of the PAF and the JF-17. It is more likely that a custom solution will be developed an overseas partner, and at this stage, China would be the most likely partner. That said, it is worth noting that the Chinese have as much of a stake in mastering HMD/S technology for their own use as the PAF does for the JF-17. In this case, the cost of development could easily be shared, and the Chinese will be the most amenable to enabling Pakistan pair the weapon systems of its choice, in addition to letting it produce the system domestically. Moreover, the PAF could offer its experience using the JHMCS to help shape the final outcome of such a program, perhaps steering it to be more in-line with Western HMD/S concepts than Russian (the primary source of China’s experience).

[1] Alan Warnes. “JF-17 Thunder: Pakistan’s multi-role fighter.” Note: a special publication released by the Pakistan Air Force during the Paris Air Show of 2015.

  • jigsaww

    The order will be for about all fleet of JF-17s, starting with block 3’s and upgrading earlier blocks later. It’s sizable. It does give PAF something to offer and haggle about. It’s entirely possible considering a western AESA is already on cards.

    • Smoking a Tejas

      I guess it will also depend on the type of system we’ll be able to get access to. The chinese have deep pockets but the West is wary of their propensity to reverse engineer so cutting edge may be off the table for us considering the Sino-Pakistan relationship. Western integration might help us with certain potential customers but I don’t think there will be many considering the niche the JF 17 has been designed for (effective, low cost, short to medium range, multi purpose platform). There might be some in North Africa but South Asia has been a bust till late.

      Simply put The JF 17 is too advanced for most economy minded countries and not advanced or tailored enough for the relative spenders like Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand etc so sales will be low. Not too mention most of them have a beef with China in the South China sea.

      • jigsaww

        I think PAF should focus on its on needs for now without caring about exports. If they happen, good. If not, move on. The JF-17 in itself is a suitable platform for countries like Thailand and Malaysia also but the political elements factor in too much. At this time, PAF has a bigger problem to take care of of retiring around 300 mirages and F-7s by 2022 and inducting new force multipliers and air defence systems by 2020. Our eastern neighbour problem also does not afford us to be deviated from own defence. JF-17 is an evolving platform and so is the Chinese industry. It will eventually sell, but that will start happening from block 3 onwards. PAF should focus on reviving the French deal on lines of Sagem blueprint. It’s such a sizeable order that the program could run into another decade while being also exportable.

        • Smoking a Tejas

          Very true. Although I’m of the opinion our eastern neighbor may have over extended himself on the modernization front. Too many bickering politicos and voices don’t help their situation at all. Look at what they’ve not been able to finish with all the resources available. Not too mention integrating systems and links of different architectures must be a total headache.

          • jigsaww

            They don’t have the money and on top of that, they’ve been bluffing with the French and in every country in MMRCA including russians, americans, germans, swedes, and french. The air force itself is a manifestation of the hodge podge the country itself is of all castes, creeds, religions, and more. It is not a country but a subcontinent.

            All these platforms and systems will bite HAF back.

    • Yep – not to mention follow-on JF-17s (especially as the F-16 gate seems to be closing), we could be talking about a total of 200-250 fighters in need of HMD/S.

      Sharing technology with China could be an issue, but then again, if the vendor decides to keep its doors of communication open with PAC (especially with on-site support), it shouldn’t be a problem. Indra didn’t have a problem with letting their ECM technology reach the JF-17 Block-II (Jane’s).

      • jigsaww

        It looks a bit difficult at the moment, but PAF should be able to offer sound guarantees on security concerns. They’ve done very successful ROSE upgrades in past with Sagem without any technology leak to date. Technology-security agreements and local presence for Selex and Thales will help secure the deal in long run and is the key. PAF should and must restart the avionics deal with France, Italy, and UK, alongside testing/integrating Chinese equipment too, without caring about not mixing technology; the argument is stupid, considering Pakistan needs a plan B at all times and has always mixed western and eastern technology.

        The basic reason for France backing off on JF-17 deal was Hindustan’s expected blackmail to kick out Rafale from MMRCA if any deal with Pakistan on JF-17 went on, and if we recall, Rafale was actually kicked out briefly from MMRCA for sometime before gaining an entry back. It was a ripped off competition and as a reward for dropping avionics package for JF-17, Rafale was declared ultimate winner, only to be followed by a renewed drama. HIndustan in all likelihood will opt for American jets over France and this should be enough for PAF to restore its original deal. Fortunately on US, the blackmail and threats haven’t worked much.

        It’s important for PAF to revive the deal for JF-17 establishing as a front line fighter especially if PAF also does not plan any more F-16s.

        On a side note, if Hindustan does go on with F-18 option on local production, PAF will again be forced to (or as ACM arian said, pushed to the wall) look up for another line of fighter platform, and the best option would be SU-35 for many reasons, including maritime presence. It is going to happen as well.

        • Ashi Sidhu

          oh yeah 6 su 35s vs 126 f 16/fa 18/rafale

          • jigsaww

            At least Russian, Pakistanis, Hindustanis, Americans, and the French can be sure of one thing on that. Those 6 SU-35 will still come for sure, but those 126 F-18s just might never come.

            Been showing the poor french fake money for last 12 years without signing the deal. Guess Modi sarkar could not fake GDP figures just right this time around.

            Just so you know, if SU-35s comes, they won’t be 6. It will be one whole squadron anywhere between 14 to 20 jets, starting with shipment of 4 or 6 or something. Don’t give stupid comments all the time.

          • Kilo-class

            But where is the money to buy those Su 35? They wont give it as aid.. More over, supplying Su 35 to pakistan (hypothetical scenario) would be a huge risk for the russians drawing indian ire.. There are billions of $$ at stake here and what can Pakistan meaningfully provide the russians in exchange ?

          • jigsaww

            If Pakistan can pour in billions into JF-17, F-16s, and other systems, it can also spare a billion for SU-35. Don’t waste your empty head on it. Hindustanis will find the dhoti shiverer in place.

            SU-35 is on offer to PAF from Russia itself. It’s not Pakistan that put it on the table. It is Russia that removed restriction of selling weaponry to Pakistan. They are ready to sell.

            Let the hindustanis enter an agreement with US on local production of F-18 and associated slavery agreements on CISMOA, BECA, and LSA, followed by begging of drones and many things will change.

            Blackmail and threats can only get hindustan that far.

          • Smoking a Tejas

            Welllll, the jf 17 had quite a bit of a heads up and it was a steal for the money. The Chinese and Pakistani design team made the best use of proven and some cutting edge Russian, US and Chinese research in its development. And considering the changes that took place between the first and 4th prototype, it took guts as well to make major adjustments to the design.

          • Kilo-class

            Billions into F16’s really… whose bilions ? US’s or yours.. I still haven’t seen a dollar figure on how much Pakistan paid China for assembling Jf-17’s though I’m sure its generous…
            Su-35 is a pipe dream. PAF has never operated a twin engine fighter. They cannot afford the maintenance and upkeep of a fighter a class higher than the F16. They cant even afford the J-10’s for God’s sake !
            As for agreements with americans.. I’m sure it wouldn’t be as bad as CENTO and SEATO..

          • jigsaww

            Why didn’t you read on “wikipedia” of 500 million USD JV on JF-17?

            I think you should explain to me where USAID to hindustan has been going in last 70 years and why the GDP growth has been faked…
            Pakistan’s FMF programme is on record. You dont have that privilege of being major non NATO ally, so sulk on that.

          • Smoking a Tejas

            It’s not really about indian ire anymore. It’s now more about money considering the Indian’s want to run with the hare and hunt with the hounds. So a deal may well be possible. I’ll just refer you to the Rd 93 agreement as an indicator of change.

          • jigsaww

            We are still waiting for the hindustani ire to show up after signing up to 300 RD-93 engines deal, local maintenance set up, MI-35 deal, pipeline deal, and up coming MI-28 deal.

            Don’t keep us waiting.

          • Smoking a Tejas

            Um mm let’s wait for the deal to take place good shiekh. I’ll be most interested to see if and when the plants are established. If and when it happens, you’re going to find the yanks even more problematic than the French on tot.

        • Smoking a Tejas

          It’s a good 4 ++ system but not sure it’s what the Indian’s will want to bank on as their main platform. And you think the yanks will be easier on tot. They make the French look like choir boys.

          • jigsaww

            The cornerstone of american foreign and defence policy is safeguarding of own interest at the end of the day. So what you say is 100% true. Every agreement US signs with Hindustan will actually be to enslave Hindustan militarily, financially, and technically.

            Hindustan thinks they can juice out the yanks, but its the uncle sam doing the juicing at the end of the day.

            Hindustan will never have a 100% control over any of its American assets technologically. Severe restrictions and checks as well as binding comm sharing. The best part is, Hindustan will pay to be dependent on US from here on.

          • Kilo-class

            I know its your wish from Pakistan’s past experience that India fall in that trap too. But we are clever. If they dont provide a module citing restrictive clauses, we substitute it with another. USA knows its tough dealing with India so they will dance to our tunes…

          • jigsaww

            You can only substitute to a certain point. At this point, every hindustani equipment imported from US is already able to be hacked into and tracked into and cracked into. If it can happen to Israel, hindustan has nowhere to hide. You can’t name a single american ally who did not have to pay price at some point because of sheer dependency on US. All underlying tech is US based. On top of that, your cant substitute protocols both technological and framework ones.
            It’s not my wish, it’s my accurate calculation which your “over clever” brains can’t make but will experience.

            That is how US works. The only way to be sure is to have converge your ambitions to that of US for long term, which hindustan wont.
            Your journey to yankie experience has just started.

          • greywolf

            LOL…you think the US will dance to india’s tune? HAHHAHAH..my god what are you smoking? HAHAH…the US will not dance to india’s tune, and since you are so ignorant, pakistan has some leverage in washington to ensure that india never gets the kind of deal it wishes. we know how to play that game as well…

      • Kilo-class

        Or buy the J-31..

        • jigsaww

          J-31 is not ready and will not be before 2025 to what PAF wants. PAF will not make an order for it before 2020. It will be a stop gap for large part until PAF can work up on its own 5th gen platform.

          • Smoking a Tejas

            Too much emphasis on untested systems. The 4th generation is still doing the bulk of the work. And the majority may still be using updated 4th generation platforms in the near future. Why? Who wants to sink trillions into untested tech except the yanks.

          • jigsaww

            True. US has a policy to cater for which calls for definitive and extreme military superiority. The kind of money they’re spending only on per hour maintenance can give defence budgets to half the world.

            Still 5th gen platforms will become need of the hour by 2025. Definite need. Even if partially inducted in a mix fleet of 4.5th and 5th gen fighters, it will be good. Pakistan’s reference is to the war on terror where deployment of 5th gen platforms or even F-16s is an overkill. Better drones should take out most of the work followed by our own JF-17s. They will suffice just enough.

  • Ashi Sidhu

    Even india’s obsolete mig 21 have hmd/s just cant imagine how ineffective jf 17 is

    • jigsaww

      And still every time Hindustani airforce goes up against PAF, it gets spanked and whipped and sent back running to its hangers. Every air battle speaks for that.

      Aviation fact: Hindustan air force is the ONLY air force that holds the ONLY world record of been shot down most by PAF in shortest time.

      • Kilo-class

        @jigsaww:disqus Stop pooping on a good article. PAF was always the aggressor and gain initial advantage by shooting aircrafts parked on base and tables turn once India starts attacking, and stop believing in PAF myths/propaganda that is essentially about suturing gaping wounds after major defeats in war.
        And please answer this question ? Who won the war of 48,65,71,99 proxy/propaganda wars etc ?

        • jigsaww

          And what is your story? Put a leash to your dogs and i’ll let you be. You Hindustanis are always trolling everywhere. I have never seen a constructive comment from a single hindustani to date except spreading hate on every thing related to Pakistan.

          All your life you hindustanis will keep making excuses about your failures. No one cares about your stupid first aggressor first cryer crap. Whenever you will open border and attack Pakistan, which you hindustanis have in every war, you will be put in your place by Pakistan military and especially the air force which treats you well. It just speaks well of PAF’s strategy and if being first aggressor gets them the results, i’d say them to junk the hell out of your hindustanis before you even put your overalls on.

          The fact i stated of hindustani air force holding the record of being the most pathetic air force against PAF is a FACT, not your bed time story tale. I don’t know what you lilly putians have been taught in your school books and media but the world knows the facts.

          With the exception of 1971 where Pakistan military was outnumbered geographically and numerically 15:1 against a hindu conspiracy, there is no other military adventure that hindustani 6 times bigger army has been able to pull of without losing 40% of kashmir, running to abu Soviet union for stalemate in 1965, or ending up losing more soldiers and aircraft in kargil where PAF did not even come in. What world are you living in and who is filling your heads with this garbage. You go up against 6 times smaller military and end up calling Israel, Soviet union or other countries to your rescue and even then go into stalemate or lose, and then go home with fabricated stories of hindustanis winning some war? What war? You people are cowards to say the least.

          • Kilo-class

            LoL.. please at the least read wikipedia for what its worth. Sing praises to Allah that in ’48 a benevolent Kashmiri called Nehru stalled indian army advance into pakistan after “Lashkars” were routed from their initial adventures into kashmir and hindustan ended up sharing what should have been hers for the taking.. Oh, now you might say you dont care whatever Nehru did as long as some part of Kashmir is with you.. but that doesn’t discount you from losing the war..
            Coming to ’65, there was no stalemate dear. Again tauba to Allah that Soviet union intervened to stop India from capturing the whole of Pakistan.
            ’71.. there is no argument there isn’t it..
            Coming to ’99.. ask your Prime minister how many of the poor Northern Light Infantry died in the shameless sneak attackin the garb of mujahidin. He pegs it at 4000. Indians counted more than 700 from what was left to count, and PAF was hiding for fear of escalation and annihilation.
            As for books taught in schools, it is documented internationally that Pakistani students are taught alternate history and propaganda. So there goes that. Hopefully school reforms in Punjab and Sindh would address that.
            As for PAF being the first aggressor. Why couldn’t the initial upper hand be sustained ? Food for thought..! Pray that it doesn’t happen the other way, for there wont be anything left to fly for PAF in that case.
            As for constructive comments.. just read you own post.. dont you smell troll ?? 🙂
            Bilal Khan.. keep up the good work. Looking forward to more articles.

          • jigsaww

            LOL…Wikipedia…your sources are as pathetic as you. Wikipedia? really? The problem with you new internet hindustani generation is that you think you can take selfies all day and then go to wikipedia to get your “research” in place and come fighting your wars on pakistani forums, sniffing. you sicken intelligence if there ever was one in you. I’ll tell you what. only a country like hindustan needs wikipedia sources to fabricate and twist facts out of complete proportion…sources which are based on news coming straight from propagandist “hindustani news”. I should not spend more time on a wikipedia researcher but i’ll let you have your education.
            I told you before or someone of your kind, no one cares about your failures and stupid excuses. it is a national symptom of hindustanis: hide your failures by making excuses. The fact as it goes on the real maps are, Pakistan freed 40% of kashmir at a time when it even did not have an army to fight a war. to this day, that kashmir is without occupation of 1 million boots, curfews, rapes or media blanket ban. Just go and read amnesty international reports on genocides and crime in kashmir by hindustani forces. That (not) my boy is called a source. as to your self consoling on nehru’s , i’ll let that help with your catharsis and bliss. what no one seem to have told the hindustani selfie boys is how the states of J&K were actually made of mess of during partition where the state of gurdaspur actualy belong to pakistan but was given to hindustanis paving way for kashmir occuption. guess all that history is removed from the books entirely and why would it not ? you lilly lutians would not even have been able to thrust into J&K had you not been helped by the partition conspiracy of gurdaspur. throughout hindustan’s history youll always find someone helping the impotent military.
            1965: there was no stalemate. yeah i guess shastri just went to get some milk to tashkent. LOL. What would you argue more on that when a hindustani has gone to the extent of changing the whole recorded history here by stating that there was no stalemate. right, i suppose at the same day hindustan also claimed its rightful right on the Moon and all of jupiter’s moons. you are such a loser really but if you continue i will give provide you with real reporting being carried out in 1965 of how hindustanis were getting whacked but on a closed mind, nothing works. so whatever.
            no there is no argument on 71. it was a conspiracy. hindustan dared not go one on one with pakistan ever had it was not outnumbering them 15:1 and geographically.
            As for kargil, i think your own wikipedia should be able to satisfy and debunk your lies. go and check otherwise i can give you better reports.
            Pick any neutral source of your choice and the revelation will dawn on you PAF has a way better kill ratio over IAF always in every battle, with nearly 5 times more kills in 1965. You hindustanis can write your own books but your cant rewrite all worlds facts.

      • zorkor

        Well said. Indian Airforce has only one thing superior over Pakistan Airforce, the number of jets. Thats it.

        • jigsaww

          60% of the air force os comprised of flying coffins and obsolete target practice jets in which hindustani pilots themself enter after getting life insurance.

    • Smoking a Tejas

      Those were essential to the bison’s survival. Although considering how many fall out of the sky hmd/s is the least of its problems. You’ll be surprised at what can be pulled out of one’s hat when the times right. For now it’s about what you can integrate with authority and assurance of supplies.

      • Mudspike

        Lol, Mig-21 BISON does NOT have HMDS infact it is a proven that its a flying coffin

  • nob

    the best part of the quwa articles are the comments made by jigsaww. i read his each and every comments.

    • Kilo-class

      I second that ! Its very entertaining !

  • bla bla

    EW DELHI:

    HIGHLIGHTS

    France had asked for $12 billion

    First planes will take at least 18 months to deliver

    French firms to invest $3billion in India in technology transfer

    India’s much-negotiated deal with France for 36 fighter jets is final – it will buy the French-made Rafale planes for 8.8 billion dollars, said sources to NDTV. The agreement is to be signed within three weeks and it will take at least 18 months for India to get the first lot of aircraft.

    France initially sought nearly 12 billion dollars for the sale of 36 fighters complete with weapon systems. India has closed the deal nearly 3 billion dollars below France’s asking price.

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi during a visit to Paris last year confirmed India’s order of 36 read-to-fly jets. Before that, the Defence Ministry had sanctioned the purchase of 120 planes, but the deal was scaled down dramatically after both sides were unable for years to agree on the unit price and the assembling of the planes in India.

    The Rafales are made by manufacturer Dassault Aviation. During PM Modi’s visit, the countries agreed that the deal would be handled between their governments.

    The Air Force has stressed it needs to start replacing its ageing jet fleet from 2017 to effectively check the capabilities of Pakistan and China.

    As the negotiations stretched – and a deal was not reached during French President Francois Hollande’s visit to India in January, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar said he is “a tough negotiator” and needed time to ensure a good bargain. The Air Force has repeatedly been asking for its ageing warplane fleet to be urgently modernised.

    Sources say that as part of the government’s push to develop and support military manufacturing at home, in exchange for selling India off-the-shelf Rafales, French companies including Dassault will have to invest three billion dollars in India to help firms here with stealth-capability and radar technologies. France had initially agreed to a 30 per cent offset obligation to be invested in India, while India had sought a minimum of 50 per cent. France has now agreed for 50 per cent offset obligation.

    some comments on this please ?

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