Russian firms to service Indian early-warning planes

September 8th, 2008 - 6:46 pm ICT by IANS  

Gelendzhik (Russia), Sep 8 (RIA Novosti) Russia’s state-run arms exporter, Rosoboronexport, said Monday a number of Russian companies will provide India’s A-50 airborne early warning (AEW) aircraft with after sale services. “Rosoboronexport has signed contracts with the Beriev Aircraft Company, the Perm Motors Group and the Vega concern to provide after-sale maintenance to India’s airborne early warning (AEW) aircraft,” a Rosoboronexport official told reporters at an air show in the Krasnodar region of south Russia.

The A-50 Mainstay is a Russian airborne warning and control system (AWACS) aircraft based on the Ilyushin Il-76 transport plane. It entered service with the Russian Air Force in 1984, and about 40 aircraft had been produced by 1992.

In 2001, India ordered three A-50EI variant fitted with the Israeli-made Phalcon radar system from Russia. The first aircraft was scheduled to arrive in 2007-08 but has been delayed.

According to various sources, the Russian Air Force has 16-19 A-50 AWACS aircraft.

Russia is currently developing a modernized version of the A-50 plane, which features an improved radar system and more sophisticated and powerful engines.

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