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Indian Air Force will receive first batch of 4 Rafale fighter aircraft in 2020.

| 2020

In 2020, the Indian Air Force will receive the first batch of four Rafale fighter aircraft, as well as additional Tejas Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Mark-I. In October 2019, during an official ceremony that was held at aircraft maker Dassault Aviation's facility in Merignac, southwestern France, India took delivery of the first Rafale fighter aircraft.

Indian Air Force will receive first batch of 4 Rafale fighter aircraft in 2020 925 001Indian Defence Minister Rajnath Singh takes delivery of the first French Rafale fighter aircraft in October 2019. (Picture source Dassault Aviation)

In 2012, French Company Dassault Aviation won a contract negotiated under a Congress-led government in 2012 to supply 126 fighter jets to India, with some built in France and the rest in India by state-owned Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, but in 2015, the deal was canceled and replaced with an order for 36 jets, all to be built in France. The deal was estimated to be worth €8.5 billion.

The 36 Indian Rafale fighters would include four Rafale trainer planes while the remaining 32 would be fighter variants. India is seeking to replace its aging fleet of fighter aircraft Jaguar, Mirage 2000, Sukhoi 30, and Mig-21 and 27 jets.

The Dassault Rafale is a French twin-engine, canard delta wing, multirole fighter aircraft designed and built by the French company Dassault Aviation.

The Rafale can carry a full range of weapons systems with a maximum payload of more than 9,000 kg that can be mounted on 14 hardpoints for the air force version, with 13 for the naval version. The range of weapons includes Mica, Magic, Sidewinder, ASRAAM and AMRAAM air-to-air missiles; Apache, AS30L, ALARM, HARM, Maverick and PGM100 air-to-ground missiles and Exocet / AM39, Penguin 3 and Harpoon anti-ship missiles.

The cockpit has hands-on throttle and stick control (HOTAS). The cockpit is equipped with a heads-up, wide-angle holographic display from Thales Avionique, which provides aircraft control data, mission data and firing cues.

A collimated, multi-image head-level display presents a tactical situation and sensor data, while two touch-screen lateral displays show the aircraft system parameters and mission data.

The pilot also has a helmet-mounted sight and display. A CCD camera and onboard recorder able to record mages of the head-up display throughout the mission.

Indian Air Force will receive first batch of 4 Rafale fighter aircraft in 2020 925 002
Indian-made Tejas fighter aircraft (Picture source Wikimedia)

The Tejas is a multi-role light combat aircraft (LCA) developed by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), for the Indian Air Force (IAF) and Indian Navy. The aircraft entered service with the IAF in July 2016.

The supersonic jet features eight hardpoints with a maximum payload capacity of 3,500 kg. It can be armed with a 23mm twin-barrel cannon,, air-to-air, air-to-surface, and anti-ship missiles, precision-guided munitions, rockets and bombs.

The Tejas LCA is powered by a General Electric F404-GE-IN20 turbofan engine, which develops a maximum thrust of 90kN with afterburner. The power-plant enables the aircraft to fly at speeds up to 1,975 km/h. The aircraft can attain a maximum range of 3,000 km.

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