Russia hopes to develop a new airborne warning and control system (AWACS) plane by 2016, Air Force chief Col. Gen Alexander Zelin said.
“We are expecting to receive the A-100 aircraft built on the basis of the Il-476 transport plane with the PS-90 engine and extended flight range,” Zelin told reporters in Moscow.
The new AWACS plane will have an advanced active phase array capable of detecting and tracking airborne and land-based targets.
“We will have the carrier [Il-476] by 2013-2014 and should be able to build this plane by 2016,” Zelin said.
The Russian Air Force has around 20 A-50 Mainstay AWACS planes, based on the Ilyushin Il-76 transport.
The A-50 is equipped with the large Liana surveillance radar with its antenna in an over-fuselage rotodome and can control up to ten fighter aircraft for either air-to-air intercept or air-to-ground attack missions.
India has acquired three A-50 AWACS fitted with Israeli Phalcon radar under a trilateral deal with Russia and Israel.
India received the first A-50EI plane in May 2009 and the second in March 2010.
It is expected that the third aircraft will be delivered by the end of the year and could acquire two more aircraft in addition to the initial deal signed in 2004.
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