BAe Sepecat Jaguar IS/IB/IM "Shamsher"

Origin: Consortium of United Kingdom & France.

Indian Name: Shamsher (Sword of Justice).

Type: Tactical light attack aircraft.

Current versions in IAF service: IS; Single seater, low-level attack aircraft.
..........................................IM; Single seater, maritime attack aircraft.
..........................................IB; Dual seater, used for training purposes.

Design Features: Has armour protection for critical system components in the aircraft. Provision for in-flight refueling with retractable probe forward of cockpit on starboard side. The windscreen is bullet-proofed against 7.5mm rifle fire.

Avionics: BAe-built Jaguars have the NAVWASS (NAVigation and Weapon-Aiming Sub-System) avionics suite, while HAL-built Jaguars have the more modern DARIN (Display Attack and Ranging Inertial Navigation) avionics suite which features a wide field-of-view Smiths (GEC Avionics) Type 1301 HUDWAC (Head-Up Display & Weapon Aiming Computer), a GEC-Ferranti COMED 2045 (Combined Map & Electronic Display), a SAGEM ULISS 82 INS and a LRMTS (Laser Ranger and Marked Target Seeker). The system also includes locally-designed IFF, ADF, radar altimeter, V/UHF and HF/SSB equipment. HAL-built Jaguars also have the MIL-STD-1553B digital databus, allowing for the fitting of a wide range of new weapons and systems.

The maritime attack variant, the Jaguar IM, has a nose-mounted Agave radar. The radar display is presented either in the head-up display (HUD) or in the normal COMED display. The radar, which is capable of air-to-air operations but optimised for maritime air-to-surface operations, scans through 140º in azimuth and through 6º or 12º in elevation (from a 60º arc).

Engine: HAL-built Jaguars are powered with the RT172-58 Adour Mk.811 turbofans, each rated at 8400 lbs. of maximum thrust. BAe-built Jaguars were initially powered with two Adour 804E turbofans.

Maximum Speed: Mach 1.5

Service Ceiling: 11,000 meters; 36,000 ft.

Maximum Range: With internal fuel only - 1408 km; 875 miles.
.......................With drop tanks - 2593 km; 1611 miles.

G Limit: +8.6 (+12 ultimate)/-3.

Armament: Two 30mm Aden guns with 150 rds of ammunition in the single seater and one 30mm Aden gun on the port side fitted in the trainer. The Jaguar IS carries a variety of un-guided ordnance such as the AS-30L ASM, Hunting BL755 CBUs (cluster bomb units), RAF-type slick and retarded 1000 lb (454 kg) bombs, Matra Durandal anti-runway bombs, Lepus 8in reconnaissance flares and Matra F1 and 155 (SNEB) rocket pods. The Jaguar IS also carries two Magic-II missiles over the wing, for protection from enemy interceptors. The aircraft is also suited to carry a tactical nuclear payload. The Jaguar IMs use the Sea Eagle AShM for maritime strike.

Maximum External Stores Load: 4763 kgs; 10,500 lbs.

Self Defence: A RWR system and active/passive electronic counter measures.

Comments: The SEPECAT/HAL Jaguar forms five operational squadrons in the IAF - four strike squadrons (No.5, No.14, No.16 and No.27) operating the IS variant and one maritime attack squadron (No.6) operating the IM variant. The IB dual seat trainer serves with the strike squadrons. An article by Jon Lake in the December 2001 issue of Air International has provided a lot of vital and important inputs into the Jaguar saga in the Indian Air Force and some of it has been reproduced below.

Purchased in 1978 to meet a requirement for a deep penetration strike aircraft (DPSA), the Jaguar has served with the IAF for over 20 years with the first of 18 'on loan' aircraft from the Royal Air Force (RAF) entering service in July 1979. These consisted of 16 Jaguar GR.1 (Interim) and 2 Jaguar T.2 (Interim) aircraft. Two of these aircraft was lost in service and one aircraft was used for research & development of the DARIN avionics suite and the installation of the over-wing MATRA Magic air-to-air missile. The IAF received its first of 35 Jaguar IS and 5 Jaguar IB aircraft in 1981 from BAe and the remaining RAF aircraft were returned during 1982 - 1984, with one of the trainers being sold to Oman by either BAe or the RAF. Licensed production at HAL, saw the IAF receiving another 58 Jaguar IS, 10 Jaguar IB and 12 Jaguar IM maritime attack aircraft. An additional 15 strike aircraft were ordered in 1993 and the last three aircraft were delivered to the IAF by 1999. Some sources suggest that these aircraft are actually a combination of strike and maritime attack variants.

An additional 17 Jaguar IB trainers have been ordered and although they will be used to eliminate some training needs, they may also have an operational role as a night-attack aircraft using laser guided bombs (LGBs). The aircraft will be fitted with the Sextant ring laser gyro-based inertial navigation system (INS-RLG) system with an embedded global positioning system (GPS). Metal-cutting for this new batch reportedly began in late-1999 and the first deliveries are expected in 2001. An order for an additional 20 strike Jaguars has also been placed. These batches are expected to allow the formation of a sixth frontline Jaguar squadron, which could have a specialised target-marking and designation role. Production of these 37 new Jaguars will continue till 2009-10 at HAL.

Contracts have been signed with French (Sextant) and Israeli (Elta) companies to upgrade the avionics of the 'strike' Jaguars and the 35 BAe-built, NAVWASS-equipped Jaguars will be the first batch of aircraft to undergo the upgrade. These aircraft will also be fitted with a MIL-STD-1553B digital databus, like the HAL-built aircraft, and have bus-compatible line-replaceable units. Apart from this, all IAF Jaguars will receive the same upgrades. Some piecemeal modifications, however have already been incorporated. The Composite Material Research Laboratory (CMRL) in Hyderabad reportedly developed 'stealth' enhancements for fighter aircraft and these had been test flown on a Jaguar, producing a 70% reduction in radar cross-section (RCS) for a 110 lb (50 kg) weight penalty. It was reported that the modifications were being adopted on a number of combat aircraft and two Jaguar strike squadrons are among them.

The man-machine interface will be dramatically improved with the addition of the wide-angle holographic El-Op HUD with a field of view of 30º x 22º (compared to the current HUD's 22º x 18º) and compatible with FLIR or raster video imagery. The aircraft is also receiving a new head down display which will be capable of displaying a digital moving map, forward looking infra-red (FLIR) or video imagery, and perhaps even electronic checklists and terminal approach plates. Consequently, a new Sextant MFD 66 active matrix liquid crystal display is to replace the projected map display fitted to NAVWASS-equipped Jaguars and the COMED fitted to the DARIN-equipped Jaguars. There is also a new video-based HUD camera (replacing a film-based camera) and a multi-channel digital video color recorder which will allow the HUD, moving map display and other imagery to be recorded simultaneously. Navigational accuracy will be enhanced through the addition of an INS-RLG with embedded GPS and later perhaps, by the addition of a terrain reference navigation system (TRNS).

Smiths Industries Aerospace at Cheltenham, UK and Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. (HAL) are jointly designing and developing a new Open Systems Architecture Mission Computer (OSAMC) system. The OSAMC will carry out the mission computing and display functions, currently carried out by the Smiths-built DARIN HUDWAC. The OSAMC uses COTS module and components and includes a full range of interfacing, computing and display generation functions and uses state-of-the-art commercial processors. Significant growth capacity is provided for both additional hardware functions and new software. Two identical mission computers will be installed to provide full redundancy. An ELTA-built airborne self-protection jammer and an indigenous radar warning receiver (RWR) will be installed as the aircraft's ECM suite is becoming increasingly inadequate and unsupportable.

It is expected that fleet-wide wiring for carriage of the Litening Laser Designation Pod, which would, perhaps, infer a need for a new stick-top and hand controller which would give greater hands-on throttle and stick (HOTAS) functionality and allow a laser designator to be used safely even an low level even in the single-seat Jaguars. Sextant is also expected to upgrade the autopilot system, which would be extremely useful for the laser designation role.

In 1996, a contract was signed with Elta to upgrade the maritime attack variant with the EL/M-2032 multimode fire control radar. Ten EL/M-2032 radars are to be supplied. The IM aircraft will also be installed with integrated electronic warfare pods. Although Bharat Rakshak had earlier reported that the Jaguar IMs were all upgraded with the EL/M-2032 radar and with integrated electronic warfare pods, it appears that this has not been done. We regret the error, if incorrect. Apparently before the IM upgrade could begin, the 'Main Force' upgrade was finally commissioned and this has apparently caused the delay.

The modifications are thought to be only the first phase of what may be a multi-stage upgrade. The second phase could include the long-planned replacement radar for the maritime variant, new stores management system, new utility services management system and new central warning panel, plus fleet wide 'stealth' radar cross-section reduction measures. A third phase would include installation of carbon brakes, FADEC (full authority digital engine control), new air data system, and escape system improvements - notably a new parachute in the ejection seat. These upgrades are expected to keep the Jaguar in service well beyond 2010 (probably even up to 2020), with further new-build aircraft augmenting the existing aircraft.

Other Links:
» Quarter Century of the Jaguar in the IAF Gp Capt Kapil Bhargava (Retd)
» Jaguar Attrition in the IAF -