Losses and Aviation Safety

INDIAN AIR FORCE HAS ACCEPTED 18 Su-30MKI FIGHTER JETS FITTED WITH SECOND-HAND ENGINES

Certain Su-30MKIs with one new and one old engine were wrongly accepted by IAF and the Directorate General of Aeronautical Quality Assurance

As reported by Deccan Chronicle, it has come to light that Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) has delivered at least 18 Su-30MKI fighters to the Indian Air Force that are fitted with second-hand engines.

“It was noticed while checking the records…that AL 31FP engines fitted in certain aircraft was in Cat B condition at the time of inspection / delivery to Indian Air Force (IAF),” according to a report that was seen by Deccan Chronicle.

Each IAF Su-30MKI is powered by a pair of AL-31FP turbofan engines.

Noteworthy Cat 2 (category B) or secondhand engines were installed into brand new Sukhoi 30 MKIs by HAL facility at Nashik without the knowledge and approval of the defence ministry.

However according to the report, what is surprising is the acceptance of such aircraft by the IAF. “Certain aircraft with one new and one old engine were wrongly accepted by IAF and the Directorate General of Aeronautical Quality Assurance. As these arrangements were not in tune with contractual provisions, it should have been rejected by IAF and DGAQA…. In any case, IAF should have obtained approval from MoD for accepting aircraft with one second hand engine.”

Currently India has a fleet of about 230 fighters although just half of them are operational.

The Sukhoi Su-30MKI is the most modern fighter jet in IAF inventory.

Photo credit: Alan Wilson from Stilton, Peterborough, Cambs, UK (Sukhoi Su-30MKI-3 ‘SB 138’) [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Dario Leone

Dario Leone is an aviation, defense and military writer. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviation Geek Club” one of the world’s most read military aviation blogs. His writing has appeared in The National Interest and other news media. He has reported from Europe and flown Super Puma and Cougar helicopters with the Swiss Air Force.

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