Looking to strengthen its surveillance capabilities and control over the maritime zone, Indian Navy is planning to procure four aircraft carrier-based Airborne Early Warning and Control (AEW&C) planes.
"We are planning to procure four carrier-based AEW&C aircraft to carry out airborne surveillance, detection and tracking of airborne and surface contacts and control air
interceptions and air strikes," Navy officials told PTI here.
At present, the Navy operates the carrier-borne Kamov-31, which were procured from Russia for early warning roles.
Using AEW&C aircraft on aircraft carriers will help in expanding the area under surveillance near the area of their deployment, they added.
"The control over the area would also be increased as the AEW&C aircraft can detect enemy fighter and maritime patrol aircraft and direct the fighter planes attached with it
towards them and take them out," officials said.
The aircraft can be used as command and control platforms, they said adding, "the aircraft should be capable of providing an integrated air and surface picture of the area
under surveillance in adverse weather conditions."
The Navy wants the aircraft to be capable of Catapult Assisted Take Off But Arrested Recovery (CATOBAR) technique for the launch and recovery of aircraft.
Navy is in the process of finalising the design on the second indigenous aircraft carrier, which is likely to be similar to the American aircraft carriers, which use the
CATOBAR technique for launch and recovery of aircraft.
The Russian aircraft carriers such as the Admiral Gorshkov are built for ski-jump take-offs and arrested landings of fighter aircraft.
The Navy also wants the aircraft to carry out patrolling and search and rescue roles.