Everything said by far the BIGGEST reason why Russia continues to loose deals in India is because the supply has been found to be un-reliable and erratic .
I agree totally on this hypothesis.
The problem with spares with legacy weapons ,in particular, come from an important element that often is disregarded in discussions on this subject : Russia since beginning of 2000 year had planned ,in the middle time, one of the biggest modernization plan ,worldwide, of all branch of its Armed Forces (procurements and modernization of equipment was effectively frozen in Eltsin's years....but not R&D for perspective products); in particular, lines of production of spare parts for equipment still in service bound to be replaced by new models was established to be progressively compressed to free resources and industrial bases for theirs substitution with lines of the new models.The best short term solution
for international buyers of products which will be replaced by new generation models in Russian Armed Forces, is partial localization of spare parts' production lines
, this will not only prevent a sharp tumble of operational readiness of systems
lacking spare parts ,but also enormously reduce life cost operations
and create work and industrial "know-how" for Indian specialized personnel
The A 330 is a tanker that has optimum fuel capacity and still does not interfere with the space in the main cargo deck -- which means the A330 can refuel, deliver men and equipment in a single compound sortie, giving logistical planners a huge amount of operational planning flexibility
And those appear to you to be a good compromises for a tanker aircraft designed for high-intensity conflict Sujoy ?
Sometimes i believe that the mindset generated by the typical "conflicts" that USA and NATO have attentively choiced to fought in the last 20 years -local ones, against insulated third world opponents uncapable to defend themselves in any way, after some years of embargo and attacked by whole NATO Coalition...- with the resulting completely warped doctrinal inferences
about single systems's requirements and CONOPS up to strategic and tactical principles, have penetrated so deeply in some foreign military environments to corrupt completely theirs capabilities to analyse witjh objectivity theirs strategic environment and system requirements for theirs needs.India must be prepared to fight a conflict against a world level power, with military capabilities literally hundreds of times greater than the most serious "opponent" of NATO since WWII at today
A conflict like the often cited (in particular in western military environments) Gulf War ,with all its operative solutions and system CONPS, would result simply COMICAL
when applied to South East Asian actors : 10 minutes ,literally
, and all the dock points ,C4 bases and airfields lend to NATO by Saudi Arabia with all theirs content ( transported here after a very slow sea and air lifting transition long over seven months !!) would have been reduced to an amass of smoking cement and metal rubbles ,even before the basis logistical rooting in the theatre would have been established.
This apparent digression was necessary to highlight that several western designed weapon systems have at theirs root the doctrinal assumption that the conflicts that they will fight will be local and against immensely inferior opponents (because those against moderately strong enemies would be prevented by NATO sheer size and those against even stronger ones by...nuclear element); A-330, like its American corresponding, show in its root-design's ideas, just those assumptions.
The First requirement for a tanker designed for high intensity conflicts is to be capable to remain operative also after airbases has been extensively damaged
has been purposely designed to have a take-off run of only 850 meters
and from very rough runways (it can takeoff without problems also from majority of smaller civilian airfields
), A-330 MRTT
has a takeoff run of more than double this distance from a perfectly smooth runway !!Sujoy the probability
to be capable to takeoff from damaged runways and times
required to even the best equipped engineering squads to clear for takeoff
an aircraft from an attacked airfield follow about the square function of the minimum takeoff distance required by this aircraft
That means that if an aircraft with a 900 me. takeoff run could be capable to operate ,let put, after 18 hours ,one with 1700 m. could require even five or six days before get a chance to takeoff and give its contribution in deciding the destiny of the conflict ; this without taking into account rough runways capabilities and possibilities to use smaller civilian runways.
are truly DECIDING capabilities
for conflicts against powerful opponents armed with several thousands of stand-off cruise missiles and ,even more, ballistic missiles with specialized payloads .