The integration of the Indo-Russian BrahMos missile on 40 of the Indian air force (IAF) Su-30MKI fleet of combat aircraft is proceeding this year. The land- and ship-launched version of the highly maneuverable, supersonic, anti-ship cruise missile have already been tested successfully.
Shivathnu Pillai, CEO and managing director of the BrahMos Aerospace joint venture, acknowledged that weight has been an issue. “The Brahmos is 2.5 [metric] tons…we need to strengthen the structure of the aircraft and bring the weight down. We also need to strengthen the rocket launcher, for which tests have already been carried out. The first test will be done at the end of this year. Induction into the IAF will be in 2015,” he continued.
Russia and India have also agreed to develop an air-launched hypersonic BrahMos 2 missile capable of flying at speeds of Mach 5 to Mach 7. A model was displayed on the joint venture’s stand at Aero India.