Indian Navy’s Ilyush 38 Sea Dragon (IL 38 SD) aircraft has test-fired maiden anti-ship missile, post modification and midlife upgrade.
The test firing of maiden anti-ship missile, using Ilyush 38 Sea Dragon (IL-38 SD) Long Range Maritime Reconnaissance (LRMR) aircraft was carried out as part of the ongoing Theater level Readiness and Operational Exercise (Tropex-17).
“The missile hit the target ship in the Arabian Sea,” the official was quoted as saying by Mathrubumi today.
IL-38 SD aircraft are based at Goa and is placed under the Headquarters, Western Naval Command.
Derived from the Ilyushin Il-18 turboprop transport aircraft, the Il-38 can be deployed in surveillance, search and rescue, maritime reconnaissance and anti-submarine warfare operations and currently in service with the Russian Navy and the Indian Navy.
Currently the upgraded Il-38 of the Russian Navy and Indian Navy are designated as Il-38N and Il-38SD respectively.
The Indian Navy placed an upgrade contract for five aircraft in 2001. The program will extend the operational life of the aircraft up to 15 years. Two upgraded aircraft were delivered in January 2006 and third was delivered in 2008. The operational problems with the new avionics and electronic warfare system caused delays in further aircraft deliveries. The last aircraft was delivered in February 2010.
The Ilyushin Il-38 that can detect and intercept surface vessels and submarines is a maritime patrol and anti-submarine warfare (ASW) aircraft designed by the Russia-based Ilyushin Aviation Complex. The first aerodynamic prototype of the Il-38 completed its maiden flight in September 1961. The Russian Navy upgraded the aircraft to extend its service life to 2015.