Russia’s Irkut is set to complete deliveries of the Su-30MKI multi-role fighter jet assembly kits to India-based Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) this year.
The company said in a statement that a total of 222 kits would have been supplied to HAL by the time the deliveries are completed.
"Currently HAL is in Phase IV of assembly, which means it is manufacturing parts from the raw material stage with complete transfer of technology from Irkut Corporation."
HAL is under contract to licence build around 272 Su-30MKI fighters at its Nashik factory, and supply them to the Indian Air Force (IAF) by 2020.
As of August 2014, the IAF had 200 Su-30MKIs in its inventory. The aircraft is expected to serve as backbone of the air force’s fighter fleet from 2020 and beyond.
Designed by Sukhoi Design Bureau, the Su-30MKI is a long-range air superiority fighter designed to conduct a wide-range of air combat and ground-attack missions in all weather conditions.
An advanced variant of the Su-30 fighter, the Su-30MKI features Su 967 head-up display, a Sigma-95 integrated GPS and ring laser gyroscope inertial navigation system, radars, Litening targeting pods and electronic counter-measure systems.
Apart from manufacturing Su-30MKI jets, HAL has also ‘mastered’ the upgrade of the aircraft type, having handed over the first modernised aircraft to IAF last month.
Commenting on HAL’s upgrade work, Irkut said in a statement to Flightglobal: "To master the whole scope of overhaul procedure is a real challenge with the overhaul technology documentation having been developed by HAL specialists.
"We at Irkut supplied the overhaul equipment and assisted in their installation and shared with HAL our experience in such work."
Image: An Indian Air Force’s Su-30 MKI fighter at Lajes Field, Portugal. Photo: Courtesy of 1st Lt. George Tobias.