Rafael is stepping up its efforts to provide systems for the Indian air force’s Hindustan Aeronautics-built Tejas light combat aircraft, with its current emphasis on offering air-to-air missiles and a targeting pod.
Yuval Miller, executive vice-president and head of Rafael’s Air and C4I Systems division, tells FlightGlobal that the wide co-operation with Indian companies enables it to offer systems which would bring the Tejas to a “4.5-generation” standard. It already has established joint ventures with Astra Microwave, Bharat Forge and Reliance Defence covering the transfer of technology and the establishment of local production sites, in compliance with New Delhi’s “Make In India” policy.
Miller says the Indian air force is evaluating the Israeli company’s Python 5 and 54nm (100km)-range I-Derby ER air-to-air missiles for the Tejas, while it is also promoting its Litening 5 targeting pod and BNET secure radio.
Rafael will also supply systems for the Indian air force’s future fleet of 36 Dassault Rafales, acting as a subcontractor to Dassault, Miller says. This will include Spice 250 and Spice 1000 precision-guided bombs to be used by both the French-built type and the Tejas, he adds.