New Delhi (Sputnik): Safran makes the engines and electronics for the Rafale fighter jet but India has been making efforts to develop its own fighter jet engine for last two decades and is looking to build a home-grown aircraft.
French firm Safran is interested in co-developing aero-engines for the Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA) – India’s proposed fifth generation fighter aircraft.
The jet maker made the proposal days after Indian Air Force (IAF) backed out of a fifth generation fighter aircraft (FGFA) programme with Russia.
During a presentation before Indian Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, the company said it is ready to transfer its latest technologies for the AMCA programme.
“Safran, supported by French authorities, is the sole company in the world to propose a complete transfer of Know-how and Know-why allowing India to be fully autonomous in the future,” the company claimed in the presentation, adding that India is the sole country in the world to whom such a transfer has been proposed.
The presentation also proposed to develop and produce engine totally under the “Made in India” initiative that would be customised to the aircraft’s needs.
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on a tour of the Safran manufacturing facility was given a presentation of military aero-engine design capabilities.
A similar kind of offer was proposed as part of $8.7 billion Rafale fighter jet deal, and Safran also makes the engines and electronics for the Rafale.
On 4 October, IAF Chief Air Chief Marshal Rakesh Kumar Singh Bhadauria backed a home grown fifth generation fighter jet and said the force fully supports the AMCA project.
“No plans for importing a fifth generation jet. The AMCA project is being given go ahead. We have given full support to it. The program is taking off,” the IAF chief said.
Last year, India conveyed to Russia its unwillingness to go ahead with the joint development of $30 billion FGFA program due to the high cost involved.
Under the Russian-Indian FGFA project, both sides had planned to invest $4 billion each at the developmen stage, while the total cost of constructing 127 fighter jets was estimated to amount to $25 billion.