Seems like there is interest on the part of the Indian Navy in the carrier capability of the Super Hornet that is part of the multi-national competition:Â
Now Navy Wants Super Hornets Too
(HINDUSTAN TIMES (INDIA)14 MAY 08) … Rahul Singh
It is now sufficiently clear that the Indian Navy wants to be able to use the air force’s assets of war. In a revelation so far kept under wraps, the Navy has asked Boeing a contender for India’s $10-billion tender for 126 air force fighters if the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet can operate off the INS Vikramaditya, the rechristened Russian aircraft carrier Admiral Gorshkov currently being refurbished in Russia for the Indian Navy. None of the fighters in the IAF’s existing fleet have the capability to operate from the deck of an aircraft carrier.
… And with the exception of the navalized version of the MiG-29 (the MiG-29K which is not the version in the offeing for the MRCA competition), none of the other fighters in the competition have a carrier history either.Â Here’s another one of those “things that make you go hmmm…”:Â
Boeing’s campaign manager for the Indian deal Michael E. Rietz has revealed that after detailed simulations conducted at the company’s test centres, the Super Hornet on offer to India, can in fact operate off the Gorshkov. The significance of Boeing’s finding lies in the fact that the Super Hornet – which by default is launched using a steam-powered catapult on American super-carriers – has never before been known to be able to take off from an angled ski-jump – the launch mechanism on India’s sole aircraft carrier INS Virat, as well as the Gorshkov and the under-construction indigenous aircraft carrier.