Taiwan's Indigenous Defense Fighters (IDFs) could be equipped with a newly-developed external pod that will improve the jets' electronic warfare (EW) capability.
The pods were designed by Chungshan Institute of Science and Technology to be armed on smaller fighter jets such as the Ching-Kuo (IDF) jets in service with the Taiwanese military, a military source was quoted as saying by Taipei Times on Sunday.
Larger jets such as the F-16 Vipers, 66 of which Taipei ordered for $8 billion last year, come with such equipment built in.
"The IDF’s narrower frame cannot accommodate the electronics, so the military commissioned the institute to design an indigenous external pod," the source said.
Under Taiwan's Phoenix Rising Project, the island nation is buying external radio pods for its F-16A/B jets which are being upgraded to the latest Viper standard. The US is in process of re-evaluating the F-16Vs EW suite and thinking if any changes/purchases are to be made to fit within the guidelines of the "Special Act for New Fighter Acquisition."