Rafale jet specifications, top speed, price: Here's the lowdown
New Delhi, July 28: The first batch of five Rafale fighter jets to be inducted into the Indian Air Force (IAF) on July 29. The Rafale fighter jet will be the most advanced fighter aircraft in the IAF's fleet.
Rafale is a twin-jet combat aircraft manufactured by Dassault Aviation. The aircraft is intended to perform air supremacy, interdiction, aerial reconnaissance, ground support, in-depth strike, anti-ship strike and nuclear deterrence missions.
The aircraft is capable of carrying a range of potent weapons. European missile maker MBDA''s Meteor beyond visual range air-to-air missile and Scalp cruise missile will be the mainstay of the weapons package of the Rafale jets.
Meteor is the next generation of BVR air-to-air missile (BVRAAM) designed to revolutionise air-to-air combat. The weapon has been developed by MBDA to combat common threats facing the UK, Germany, Italy, France, Spain and Sweden
Besides the missile systems, the Rafale jets will come with various India-specific modifications, including Israeli helmet-mounted displays, radar warning receivers, low-band jammers, 10-hour flight data recording, infra-red search and tracking systems among others
Here's everything you need to know about Rafale Jets, Specifications, top speed, price, features, cockpit
The Rafale cockpit houses a hands-on throttle and stick control (HOTAS). The cockpit also has a wide-angle display and the avionics are supplied by Thales Avionique which provides necessary data regarding aircraft control and firing cues.
The fighter pilot gets a helmet-mounted sight. And there is a camera and on-board recorder that records the display while the mission is being carried out.
The Rafale has twin M88-2 engines each capable of providing up to 50 kilonewtons (11,000 pounds-force) of dry thrust and 75 kN (17,000 pounds-force) with afterburners. It also has the facility for a buddy-buddy refuelling that allows one fighter aircraft to lend its fuel to another while still in fight. Some of the cutting edge technology that they've used includes single-piece bladed compressor disks and single-crystal turbine blades as well as ceramic coatings which is why it's so popular. The engines push the Rafale to attain a high speed of 1.8 Mach (1912 kmph) and a range of more than 3700 km with 3 drop tanks.
The Rafale (Air Force version) is known to carry payloads of more than 9t. And the naval version can carry 13t. The weapons are across the range of Sidewinder, Apache, Harpoon, ALARM, PGM100, Magic and Mica. It can carry anti-ship and air-to-air missiles and the SCALP missile can shoot targets on land over 300 kms away. It can even aim at eight different targets at the same time. It's got a twin gun pod as well as a 30mm cannon which can fire over 2500 rounds in a minute. The bird is also equipped with technology that enables laser guidance for missiles.
India had signed an inter-governmental agreement with France in September 2016 for procurement of 36 Rafale fighter jets at a cost of around Rs 58,000 crore.
Wing span: 10.90 m
Length: 15.30 m
Heigh: t5.30 m
Max. thrust: 2 x 7.5 t
Limit load factors: -3.2 g / +9 g
Max. speed: M = 1.8 / 750 knots
Approach speed: less than 120 knots
Landing ground run: 450 m (1,500 ft) without drag-chute
Service ceiling: 50,000 ft
Overall empty weight: 10 t (22,000 lbs) class
Max. take-off weight: 24.5 t (54,000 lbs)
Fuel:(internal): 4.7 t (10,300 lbs)
Fuel (external): up to 6.7 t (14,700 lbs)
External load: 9.5 t (21,000 lbs)