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Everything about the Dassault’s Aviation RAFALE

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Everything about the Dassault's Aviation RAFALE

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Hello Buddies, I hope you are applying every inch of hard work and effort to earn the prestigious uniform of the Indian Armed Forces. In this appreciable blog, I am going to profile one of the Multirole Combat Fighter Aircrafts i.e. Dassault's Aviation Rafale


Interesting Highlights of the Dassault's Aviation Rafale:


July 1986


December 2000


Dassault Aviation


French Air Force & French Navy


Mach 1.8 / 750 kt (1,389 km/h)


1,000 ft/s


  • The Rafale is a twin-jet combat aircraft capable of carrying out a wide range of short and long-range missions, including ground and sea attacksreconnaissancehigh-accuracy strikes and nuclear strike deterrence.
  • The aircraft was developed for the French Air Force and Navy and entered service with the French Navy in 2004 and  the French Air Force in 2006. 


Development of the Dassault's Aviation Rafale:

  • The Rafale B and C entered service with the French Air Force in June 2006, when the first squadron was established. The second air force squadron was set up in 2008. 
  • A € 3.1 billion ($3.89 billion) contract to develop the fully capable F3 standard aircraft was awarded to Dassault Aviation (€1.5 billion), Snecma (€600 million), Thales (€500 million) and other French contractors by the French Ministry of Defence in February 2004.
  • An order for 59 F3 aircraft, 47 for the air force (11 two-seat and 36 single-seat) and 12 (single-seat) for the navy, was placed in December 2004.
  • The first Rafale F3 was delivered to the French Air Force in 2008. In March 2007, three French Air Force and three navy Rafale fighters were deployed in Tajikistan in support of the NATO International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan.
  • In February 2012, the Indian Ministry of Defence selected Rafael for the Indian Air Force’s MMRCA (Medium Multirole Combat Fighter Aircraft) Programme at a contract of $20 billion.
  • Rafale emerged as the preferred aircraft among various contenders for what is being called the biggest military aviation contract in the world.
  • Under the contract, Dassault Aviation will supply 126 Rafale fighters. The first 18 fighters will be supplied by 2015 and the rest will be manufactured in India under a technology transfer to Hindustan Aeronautics (HAL). 
  • The Indian Government finalised a contract in April 2015 for the acquisition of 36 Rafale Aircraft. 


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Cockpit of the Dassault's Aviation Rafale:

  • The cockpit has Hands On Throttle and Stick Control (HOTAS)
  • The cockpit is equipped with a heads-up, wide-angle holographic display from Thales Avionique, which provides aircraft control data, mission data and firing cues.
  • A collimated, multi-image head-level display presents tactical situation and sensor data, while two touch-screen lateral displays show the aircraft system parameters and mission data.
  • The pilot also has a helmet-mounted sight and display. 
  • A CCD camera and onboard recorder records the image of the head-up display throughout the mission.


Weapons and Countermeasures of the Dassault's Aviation Rafale:

  • Rafale can carry payloads of more than 9 t on 14 hardpoints for the air force version, with 13 for the naval version. 
  • The range of weapons includes Mica, Magic, Sidewinder, ASRAAM and AMRAAM air-to-air missiles; Apache, AS30L, ALARM, HARM, Maverick and PGM100 air-to-ground missiles and Exocet / AM39, Penguin 3 and Harpoon anti-ship missiles.
  • In December 2004, the MBDA Storm Shadow / Scalp EG stand-off cruise missile was qualified on the Rafale.
  • In September 2005, the first flight of the MBDA Meteor BVRAAM beyond visual range air-to-air missile was conducted on a Rafale Fighter.
  • In December 2005, successful flight trials were carried out from the Charles de Gaulle of the range of Rafale's weapon systems. 
  • In April 2007, the Rafale carried out the first firing of the Sagem AASM precision-guided bomb, which has both GPS / inertial guidance and, optionally, imaging infrared terminal guidance. 
  • The Rafale has a twin gun pod and a Nexter 30mm DEFA 791B cannon, which can fire 2,500 rounds a minute. 
  • The Rafale is equipped with laser designation pods for laser guidance of air-to-ground missiles.


Sensors and Radars of the Dassault's Aviation Rafale:

  • Rafale’s electronic warfare system is the Spectra from Thales. Spectra incorporates solid state transmitter technology, a DAL laser warning receivermissile warningdetection systems and jammers.
  • The Rafale is equipped with an RBE2 passive electronically scanned radar developed by Thales, which has look-down and shoot-down capabilities.
  • The radar can track up to eight targets simultaneously and provides threat identification and prioritisation.
  • Thales developed an active electronically scanned version of the RBE2, which equipped the Rafale in February 2011. 
  • Flight tests of the radar onboard the Rafale took place in 2008.
  • RUAG Aviation has been awarded a $5 million contract by Thales in May 2009 to produce sub assemblies for the RBE2 radar to be equipped on the Rafale fighter jet.
  • Optronic systems include the Thales / SAGEM OSF infrared search and track system, installed in the nose of the aircraft. 
  • The optronic suite carries out search, target identification, telemetry and automatic target discrimination and tracking.
  • In January 2012, the French Ministry of Defence awarded a ten-year contract to Thales to maintain the electronic systems and warfare of the aircraft.
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Navigation and Communication system of the Dassault's Aviation Rafale:

  • The communications suite on the Rafale uses the Saturn onboard Very/Ultra-High Frequency (V/UHF) radio, which is a second-generation, anti-jam tactical UHF radio for NATO. Saturn provides voice encryption in fast-frequency hopping mode.
  • The aircraft is also equipped with fixed-frequency VHF / UHF radio for communications with civil air traffic control.
  • Multifunction Information Distribution System (MIDS) terminal provides secure, high-data-rate tactical data exchange with NATO C2 stations, AWACS aircraft or naval ships.
  • The Rafale is powered by two M88-2 engines, each providing a thrust of 75kN.
  • Rafale is equipped with a Thales TLS 2000 navigation receiver, which is used for the approach phase of flight. 
  • TLS 2000 integrates the Instrument Landing System (ILS), Microwave Landing System (MLS) and VHF omni-directional radio-ranger (VOR) and marker functions.
  • The radar altimeter is the AHV 17 altimeter from Thales, which is suitable for very low flight. 
  • The Rafale has a TACAN tactical air navigation receiver for en-route navigation and as a landing aid and have a SB25A combined interrogator-transponder developed by Thales. 


I hope the article was helpful for all the defence aspirants, if you have any doubt at all or you want to suggest me anything then please leave a comment to help you in least possible time!!

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