F/A-18 DEMONSTRATES ABILITY TO LAUNCH FROM INDIAN CARRIERS WITH ‘UPSIZED’ LOADOUT

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Boeing has concluded a demonstration of the F/A-18 Super Hornet’s ability to launch from Indian aircraft carriers with two Boeing AGM-84 Harpoon missiles, which exceeds New Delhi’s requirement for its multirole carrier-borne fighters (MRCBF) program.

The capability was demonstrated at the Indian Navy’s Shore Based Test Facility (SBTF) at INS Hansa in Goa, India, between late-May and early-June 2022, said Alain Garcia, vice-president International Business Development at Boeing India, in an interview with Janes . The demonstrations were done as part of trials to validate the F/A-18’s ability to operate from Indian carriers.

Under the MRCBF, the Indian Navy is planning to acquire 57 carrier-borne fighter aircraft that will operate from its Indigenous Aircraft Carrier (IAC), which will be in service as INS Vikrant once it is commissioned. The 37,000-ton vessel completed its final sea trials in early-July 2022 and is scheduled to be commissioned in August 2022.

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