India to Equip Su-30MKI Fighters with Rafael I-Derby Missiles

The Indian Air Force is set to equip its fleet of Sukhoi Su-30MKI multirole fighters with the Rafael Advanced Defense Systems I-Derby ER (extended range) beyond-visual-range air-to-air missile (BVRAAM), according to a report by Jane’s. The new missiles will replace the aging Russian-made Vympel R-77 (AA-12 'Adder') AAMs by 2021-22.

Official sources told Jane’s that the Indian Air Force is in talks with Rafael to acquire the active radar-guided I-Derby ER, which has a range of 100 km, adding that the procurement process for the missiles could be finalized “imminently.”

The latest developments come after the fire-and-forget I-Derby ER missile, which features a software-defined radar seeker and a dual-pulse solid rocket motor, was selected to be the primary AAM to arm India’s Tejas Light Combat Aircraft following successful test-firings in July 2018.