GUWAHATI: France to equip Indian Rafale fighters with air-to-surface Hammer all-weather smart weapon besides air-to-air MICA, METEOR missiles and air-to-ground SCALP stand-off weapon.
The Hammer is a fire and forget weapon that can be launched from a very short range to a very long range of 70 kilometers without the availability of GPS and has a high resistance to jamming and target location errors.
In September, both the governments signed a contract for Hammer. The weapons in large numbers will be delivered to the Golden Arrows Squadron of Indian Air Force station in Ambala by the end of October.
On Wednesday, the second batch of Rafale jets has arrived in India, the Air Force informed. The second batch of three Rafale aircraft got airborne from Istres airbase in France and flew for over eight hours before landing at an IAF base. They covered a distance of over 3700 nautical miles with three in-flight refuelings.
The delivery of the jets started nearly four years after India signed an inter-governmental agreement with France to procure 36 aircraft at a cost of ₹ 59,000 crore. The induction of all 36 jets will be completed by 2023.