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Indian Air Force plans to integrate BrahMos-II Hypersonic ALCM after BrahMos-A and BrahMos-NG

Source : IgMp Bureau

Indian Air Force plans to integrate BrahMos-II Hypersonic ALCM after BrahMos-A and BrahMos-NG

The Indian Air Force (IAF) is gearing up a significant portion of its Su-30MKI fleet for a major transformation into potent long-range strike platforms. With approximately 21 Su-30MKIs already revamped to carry 2.5-ton Air Launched Cruise Missiles (ALCMs) such as the BrahMos-A, and plans underway to make more aircraft BrahMos-A capable, the IAF is setting the stage for bolstered offensive capabilities.

An additional 19 Su-30MKIs are slated for upgrades to enable BrahMos-A compatibility, thus substantially amplifying the IAF’s long-range strike potency. By outfitting and reinforcing these aircraft to accommodate ALCMs like the BrahMos-A, India gains a significant advantage in the maritime theater.

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BrahMos-A in the middle and 2 upcoming BrahMos-NG ALCMs on the underwing tips of the two wings of a Sukhoi Su-30 fighter mock up

While the current thrust is on integrating BrahMos-A, BrahMos Aerospace, the brainchild behind the BrahMos missile, is charting out a roadmap for a lighter variant dubbed BrahMos-NG. Unlike the BrahMos-A, BrahMos-NG won’t necessitate modifications or reinforcement of the Su-30MKI’s fuselage, presenting a more streamlined and cost-efficient solution for all other fighter types within the IAF fleet.

The strategic import of the revamped Su-30MKIs transcends their ALCM-carrying capability. With blueprints in place for integrating future air-launched ballistic missiles (ALBMs) and hypersonic ALCMs like the BrahMos-II, these aircraft are poised to metamorphose into miniature strategic bombers. The centrally located hardpoints on these revamped Su-30MKIs, capable of accommodating a 2.5-ton payload, will act as the launchpad for testing and assimilating these cutting-edge weapons systems.

India Brahmos 2 Hypesonic Missile 1 1
BrahMos-II Hypersonic Cruise Missile

The deployment of the BrahMos-A equipped Su-30MKI fleet signifies a pivotal stride for the IAF, fortifying offensive capabilities, laying the groundwork for forthcoming weapon systems, and underscoring India’s commitment to a robust aerial defense strategy. The impending arrival of BrahMos-NG heralds yet another milestone, promising even greater flexibility and potential for the IAF’s air power. While nations like the United States and Russia boast fleets of strategic bombers adept at dispensing nuclear and conventional payloads across vast distances, India has hitherto relied on a blend of fighter aircraft and ground-based missile systems for its strategic deterrence.

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