India and Russia on Friday signed key agreements for long-term maintenance support for Sukhoi-30MKI fleet of fighter jets of the Indian Air Force (IAF).
IAF has some 230 of the Sukhoi-30 jets of Russian origin. Mid-air engine failure of the Sukhoi-30 had India worried in the year 2014 that led to modification in the engine following Russian intervention.
The agreement was signed in presence of Defence Minister Arun Jaitley and Russian Industries minister Denis Manturov at a first-of-its-kind Indo-Russian meet in New Delhi.
The Sukhoi is serviced and maintained by public sector undertaking Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL). As per the agreement the Russian companies United Aircraft Corporation and the United Engine Corporation will provide long term supply of spares and technical assistance for five years. The Sukhoi-30 engine needs to be overhauled after a fixed number of hours — about 800-900 hours of flying. All military equipment by the very nature of it needs consumable parts that have “run-life” and need to be changed or overhauled after its specified life. . The Sukhoi has an availability rate of 65 per cent because of delay in spares. The agreement aims to quickly supply the parts.The two-day meeting is aimed at improving the maintenance issues on fighter jets Sukhoi-30MKI, Mi-17 helicopters, T-90 tanks and the MiG 29K naval fighters.About 70 per cent of military equipment with the Indian armed forces — the Army, Indian Air Force (IAF) and Navy — is of Russian origin. With Moscow continuing to be the largest supplier of military hardware, this scenario will not change for the next three decades.Repairs and servicing of key equipment are hampered by lack of ready availability of spares. A rather circuitous route through a single agency in Moscow makes it lengthier.The matter had been discussed during the summit meeting between Read More…