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Israel to expand AEW fleet for India

India will acquire a further two Ilyushin Il-76 transports adapted to carry Israeli-made Phalcon type airborne early warning (AEW) radars and sensors.

According to an Indian source, the aircraft have already being purchased from Uzbekistan by Israel Aerospace Industries, and are being prepared for the surveillance role at the facilities of the Tashkent Mechanical Plant in Taganrog in co-operation with Beriev.

AEW radars provided by IAI's Elta Systems division will be installed in the aircraft in Israel, along with the other sensors that comprise the Phalcon system. Sources indicate that India will receive an upgraded system, which will have a "smooth interface" with the one already installed in its air force's three operational examples.

In 2004, India purchased three Il-76 aircraft that were converted to AEW platforms. These were delivered between 2009 and 2011. New Delhi's contract also includes an option for additional aircraft.

IAI declines to comment on the follow-on contract.

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