NEW DELHI: If everything goes as per plan, the Indian Air Force (IAF) is all set to become the only air force in the world with a supersonic cruise missile system!
India will achieve this unique capability when IAF’s frontline fighter aircraft Sukhoi-30 MKI will test fire a 2,500 kg BrahMos air-to-ground missile in the coming months. Some reports have claimed that the test firing will be held in April.
The IAF had, last June, flown with a ‘dummy bomb’ and had been preparing for the actual test firing since then.
With a range of over 290 kms, the BrahMos, onboard the Sukhoi-30 MKI, will provide the IAF the lethal capability to strike deep inside enemy territory without the risks involved in entering a heavily defended airspace.
Integration of BrahMos with Su-30 MKI will render the weapon a multi-platform capability, allowing the IAF to deliver a deadly blow to their vital installations from stand-off ranges.
The integration brings a paradigm shift in the capability of the IAF vis-a-vis its adversaries.
The Su-30-Brahmos combination will carry out air combat operations within and beyond visibility range and will provide the IAF with the capability of attacking targets protected by powerful air defence assets.
Around 40 Su-30 MKI aircraft are expected to be modified to make them capable of carrying BrahMos.
As per reports, several other countries in possession of the Su-30 strike fighter are looking to acquiring a lethal weapon system for the Russian-made warplanes.