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India, Australia Finalising Agreements For Cooperation In Air-To-Air Refuelling

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India, Australia Finalising Agreements For Cooperation In Air-To-Air Refuelling


Defence Minister Rajnath Singh holds bilateral talks with Australian Deputy PM and Defence Minister Richard Marles before 2+2 Ministerial dialogue

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and Australian Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Richard Marles held bilateral talks on Monday during which they underscored enhancing cooperation further in information exchange and Maritime Domain Awareness (MDA). The two sides are also in an advanced stage of discussion to conclude implementing arrangements on hydrography cooperation and cooperation for air-to-air refuelling, the Defence Ministry said.

“Mr. Singh emphasised that the forces of the two countries should also look at cooperating in niche training areas like artificial Intelligence, anti-submarine and anti-drone warfare and cyber domain,” the Ministry said in a statement. “The two ministers agreed that deepening cooperation in defence industry and research would give a fillip to the already strong relationship.”

The bilateral meeting was held at South Block before the 2+2 Ministerial dialogue. Mr. Marles reviewed a tri-service guard of honour before the start of the meeting.

Mr. Singh suggested that shipbuilding, ship repair and maintenance, and aircraft maintenance, repair, and overhaul could be the potential areas of collaboration, the Ministry said.

The two Ministers also discussed cooperation for joint research in underwater technologies, and collaboration between defence start-ups of both the countries, including solving challenges jointly. “They concurred that a strong India-Australia defence partnership will augur well not just for the mutual benefit of the two countries but also for the overall security of the Indo-Pacific,” the statement said.

Both Ministers reaffirmed their commitment to strengthening bilateral defence relations, the statement said, and expressed satisfaction over the increasing military-to-military cooperation between the two countries, including joint exercises, exchanges, and institutional dialogue.

Defence cooperation between India and Australia has seen a transformation in recent years, with a series of exchanges, high-level visits, and exercises, both bilateral and multilateral. In addition, MDA, subsurface domain awareness, and anti-submarine warfare have been major focus areas for the Quad group of countries comprising India, Australia, Japan and the U.S. in the backdrop of the rapid expansion of Chinese naval presence in the Indian Ocean Region.

In information sharing, the Quad’s Indo-Pacific MDA or IPMDA is currently in the implementation phase, and will be on top of the agenda at the upcoming Quad summit to be hosted by India early next year, sources said..

India and Australia signed a Mutual Logistics Support agreement in 2020, and the two Navies signed the ‘Joint Guidance for the India-Australia Navy to Navy Relationship’ document in August 2021. Australia also has a Liaison Officer at the Indian Navy’s Information Fusion Centre for the Indian Ocean Region.

There have been several firsts this year in bilateral defence cooperation — the maiden visit of an Indian Navy submarine to Australia; Canberra hosting the Malabar naval exercise; and Indian Navy Dornier and Air Force C-130 visiting Cocos Keeling island, as reported by The Hindu earlier.





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INS Arihant’s Nuke-Capable K-4 Submarine-Launched Ballistic Missile ‘Ready To Roll’

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INS Arihant’s Nuke-Capable K-4 Submarine-Launched Ballistic Missile ‘Ready To Roll’


NEW DELHI: India tested its nuclear capable K-4 submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM), designed to have a strike range of 3,500 km, for the second time in six days on Friday. The missile test, as the one conducted on January 19, was undertaken from an undersea platform in the shape of a submersible pontoon off the coast of Andhra Pradesh according to a report by Rajat Pandit of TOI.

The solid-fuelled K-4 missile is being developed by DRDO to arm the country’s nuclear-powered submarines in the shape of INS Arihant and its under-development sister vessels. INS Arihant, which became fully operational in November 2018 to complete India’s nuclear triad, is currently armed with the much shorter K-15 missiles with a 750 km range.

“The K-4 is now virtually ready for its serial production to kick-off. The two tests have demonstrated its capability to emerge straight from underwater and undertake its parabolic trajectory,” said a source.

India has the land-based Agni missiles, with the over 5,000-km Agni-V inter-continental ballistic missile now in the process of being inducted, and fighter jets jury-rigged to deliver nuclear weapons. But INS Arihant gives the country’s deterrence posture much more credibility because nuclear-powered submarines armed with nuclear-tipped missiles are considered the most secure, survivable and potent platforms for retaliatory strikes.

Once the K-4 missiles are inducted, they will help India narrow the gap with countries like the US, Russia and China, which have over 5,000-km range SLBMs. The K-4 missiles are to be followed by the K-5 and K-6 missiles in the 5,000-6,000 km range class.

The 6,000-ton INS Arihant, which is propelled by an 83 MW pressurised light-water reactor at its core, in turn, is to be followed by INS Arighat, which was launched in 2017. The next generation of nuclear submarines, currently called S-4 and S-4*, will be much larger in size.





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After Upgradation, Sukhoi Su-30MKI Indigenisation To Reach 78%

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After Upgradation, Sukhoi Su-30MKI Indigenisation To Reach 78%


India has received clearance to upgrade 84 Sukhoi Su-30MKI fighter jets, which will result in 78% indigenization after the upgrade

In a significant step towards bolstering its military might with indigenously developed technology, India is poised to witness its Russian-origin Sukhoi Su-30MKI fighter jets evolve into a domestic platform. Speaking at a recent lecture.

The upgrade program is being led by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) in partnership with the Indian Air Force and other partners. The upgrade is expected to cost US$7.5 billion.

The Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) granted Acceptance of Necessity (AoN) for the upgrade. The upgrade is part of India’s efforts to improve the capabilities of its primary fighter aircraft, it refers to as the “Super Sukhoi”.

This initiative is a part of a larger effort by the Indian Air Force to modernize its ageing fleet. Air Chief Marshal Chaudhari asserted the critical role of an offensive air force as demonstrated in current global conflicts and emphasized India’s move towards an indigenized arsenal. To this end, the IAF has been proactive, from upgrading its Mirage 2000 to enhancing its MiG-29 fleet.

In summary, the IAF’s commitment to updating their combat forces with the latest technology, including shifting to fifth-generation fighter jets, ensures operational preparedness and a strong deterrence capability. The gradual indigenization of its air fleet marks a pivotal shift in India’s defence landscape, reducing dependency on foreign imports and fostering technological sovereignty.





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Akash Weapon System Exports For The Armenian Armed Forces Gathers Pace

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Akash Weapon System Exports For The Armenian Armed Forces Gathers Pace


According to unconfirmed reports, Armenia is a top contender for an export order for Akash SAM system manufactured by Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL).

While there is no official confirmation because of the sensitivities involved, documents suggest that the order for the same has already been placed the report further added.
There are nine countries, in turn, which have shown interest in the indigenously-developed Akash missile systems, which can intercept hostile aircraft, helicopters, drones and subsonic cruise missiles at a range of 25-km. They are Kenya, Philippines, Indonesia, UAE, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Vietnam and Algeria reported TOI.

The Akash export version will also be slightly different from the one inducted by the armed forces. The 100-km range air-to-air Astra missiles, now entering production after successful trials from Sukhoi-30MKI fighters, also have “good export potential”, said sources.

Akash is a “tried, tested and successfully inducted systems”. Indian armed forces have ordered Akash systems worth Rs 24,000 crore over the years, and MoD inked a contract in Mar 2023 of over Rs 9,100 crores for improved Akash Weapon System

BDL is a government enterprise under the Ministry of Defence that was established in 1970. BDL manufactures surface-to-air missiles and delivers them to the Indian Army. BDL also offers its products for export.

Akash Weapon System

The AWS is a Short Range Surface to Air Missile (SRSAM) Air Defence System, indigenously designed and developed by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO). In order to meet aerial threats, two additional Regiments of AWS with Upgradation are being procured for Indian Army for the Northern borders. Improved AWS has Seeker Technology, Reduced Foot Print, 360° Engagement Capability and improved environmental parameters.

The project will give a boost to the Indian missile manufacturing industry in particular and the indigenous defence manufacturing ecosystem as a whole. The project has overall indigenous content of 82% which will be increased to 93% by 2026-27.

The induction of the improved AWS into the Indian Army will increase India’s self-reliance in Short Range Missile capability. This project will play a role in boosting the overall economy by avoiding outgo of precious foreign exchange to other countries, increasing employment avenues in India and encouraging Indian MSMEs through components manufacturing. Around 60% of the project cost will be awarded to the private industry, including MSMEs, in maintaining the supply chain of the weapon system, thereby creating large scale of direct and indirect employment.





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