In a new achievement for Indian Defense, the Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. (HAL), the BrahMos Aerospace Pvt. Ltd. (BAPL), the Indian Air force (IAF) and the Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) have successfully integrated the BrahMos cruise missile in IAF’s long range multirole fighter aircraft Su30 MKI. A Su30 MKI on Saturday made its first flight with an integrated BrahMos supersonic cruise missile from HAL airport, Nashik on Saturday (25th June 2016). It has been a remarkable achievement to integrate a large and heavy missile into the airframe without disturbing the fighter jet’s performance.
The BrahMos is a cruise missile for precision striking jointly developed by India and Russia with a range of more than 290 kms. With the missile being integrated into a long range Su30 MKI, IAF can now deliver the missile deep into enemy territory during wartime. This can happen because the aircraft can deliver the missile right from the airspace border of the country. After the launch, BrahMos can travel in the enemy airspace with a speed of Mach 2.8 (3430 km/hr.) and before it can be detected by enemy radar system, the missile can hit & destroy enemy airfields, ammunition depots, oil depots, army bases etc. Around 40 Su30 MKI will be modified to integrate the missile.
What does it mean for the Indian economy?
This achievement has been keenly observed by the countries which operate long range fighter aircrafts and different versions of Russian made Sukhois. India is also planning to sell various weaponry systems to the foreign countries. The BrahMos is in the top of the list. There will be many countries that would want a similar lethal weapon system that will enhance the Air force capabilities. T Suvarna Raju, CMD-HAL said that “It is a perfect example of Make in India and an engineering marvel in aviation history of India. It proves that when all agencies come together with one mission, there is nothing like impossible.”
This development is one of those initiatives of “Make in India” that can attract foreign buyers and boost Indian economy by selling this weaponry system. It is the first time in the world that such a heavy (2,500 kg) supersonic cruise missile has been integrated on a fighter aircraft and there are at least 10 countries that operate Su30 fleet in the world. There is a great opportunity for India to sell this weaponry system to foreign countries. India is considered to be one of the biggest importers of foreign weapons. But with good quality defense products like this one, India can quickly become one of the suppliers of small and heavy weapons to the world.
Prof. Rohan Das,
Indira School of Business Studies, Pune