Honeywell has been asked to quote for the supply of 270 F125IN turbofan engines to replace the twin Rolls-Royce Adour Mk 821s on India’s 125-strong fleet of Jaguar strike aircraft. The F125IN is 600 pounds lighter than the Adour and is expected to enable 25-percent-shorter hot-and-high takeoffs. India’s Jaguars have become overweight and underpowered as a result of avionics and systems upgrades.
Rolls-Royce previously pitched for an upgrade to the Jaguar’s existing engines, claiming that this would minimize aircraft integration issues, use existing infrastructure at Hindustan Aeronautics (HAL) and provide economies of scale with the HAL-built BAE Hawk advanced jet trainer engine. But the eventual RFP called for a new engine rather than an upgrade, and Rolls-Royce withdrew from the bidding.
The F125IN is designed to drop-fit into existing Jaguar airframes, would extend the aircraft’s range by 36 percent and has automatic restart after flame-out, says Honeywell. The re-engining would extend the Jaguar’s life by 15 years. “The upgrade is a good decision. The Jaguar is a low-level deep-penetration strike aircraft, and India has nothing else in that category. Low-level flying requires accurate navigation systems,” a former air force official told AIN.
Honeywell will first be required to conduct a trial modification of the Jaguars with the F125IN engines to be completed by 2015-16. HAL will re-engine the remaining 123 fighters by 2023-24. Honeywell and HAL have also been collaborating to produce the TPE331 engine to power the HAL-built Dornier 228.
The Jaguars are also being upgraded to Darin-III standard to feature modified avionics architecture, integration of multi-mode radar, and engine and flight instrument system/integrated standby instrument system (EFIS/ISIS) to replace existing electro-mechanical flight instruments and/or engine instruments.