LCA Tejas and derivatives news and discussion (reincarnated)

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Navy's test pilots deputed to NFTC with the LCA Navy NP1 and NP2

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LCA Navy's cockpit. Open the image in a new browser to see it in full size

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Neat.  Call me old-school but with a backup HSI (dial) it would have been even better.

 

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Moving forward with the LCA (Navy)

An excellent article by one of India's most experienced Navy Test Pilots, Cmdr Jaydeep Maolankar.  He has been associated with the LCA Navy program from the outset and been one of the pillars of that program. The article details many aspects of the LCA Navy Mk1 program, the challenges faced and how the test program finally completed the carrier compatibility trials.

 

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SP-21, tail number LA-5021, the first FOC certified series production Tejas Mk1 flew yesterday for the first time.

Air to air probe integrated, 3 drop tank config with pressure refueling, Gsh-23 cannon integrated, new dual carriage pylons, new Auto Low Speed Recovery mode in the FCS, Derby BVRAAM integrated.

Flavour of the day.... Maiden flight of LCA FOC series production fighter SP-21 tail number LA-5021, piloted by HAL's Chief of Test Flying, Air Commodore KA Muthana VSM.

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Second Tejas squadron, No.18 'Flying Bullets' to be stood up on the Tejas Mk1 after the first 4 are delivered to the IAF.  The 'Flying Bullets' are one of the most prestigious IAF squadrons, boasting of the only Param Vir Chakra recipient of the IAF, Flying Officer Nirmal Jit Singh Sekhon, posthumously awarded for taking on 6 Sabres alone in his Gnat.

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Bengaluru: A new variant of India’s Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Tejas completed its first flight successfully..

One of the key features of the new Tejas variant is the air-to-air refuelling probe giving it an edge during enduring missions. The new variants will be able to fly non-stop for over eight hours with air refueling support, thereby giving a fillip to IAF operations.

During Tuesday’s flight, the airframe profile profile was tested in which the engine and aircraft performance was proven. As a mandatory practice, the pilot is said to have also flown an inverted sortie that lasted for 10 seconds. During today’s flight the pilot pulled 8G and touched supersonic speeds which proved the airframe and engine capabilities.

HAL sources say that Tejas SP-22 is likely to fly at the end of this month and two more fighters (SP-23 and SP-24) will join the party by end of May. Tejas SP-22 is expected to undergo EGR (engine ground run) this week.

IAF sources say that the second squadron of Tejas (No 18, Flying Bullets) will be formed at Air Force Station Sulur by likely next month, with the induction of first four fighters. Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal R K S Bhadauria who held the Tejas review on March 2 has told all stakeholders to work in synergy towards the effective operationalisation of the Tejas fleet. The IAF Chief also reviewed the IOC, FOC, Tejas MkIA and Tejas MkII variants and asked DRDO and HAL to hasten up the development schedules.

In a recent interview to Onmanorama, the IAF Chief said that with the induction of the second squadron IAF will enhance the operational utilisation of the Tejas. “The Tejas has very good capabilities and as we gain experience we will continue to expand its operational utility in IAF plans,” Air Chief Marshal Bhadauria had said.

 

Past Learning

HAL officials say that they have benefited immensely ...

“The lessons from the recent deliveries of Tejas fighters to IAF have come handy for us in the current scheme of things. SP-21 could have flown much earlier provided the clearance for software configurations came early from the authorities,” says an official. ...

FOC Features SP-21 boasts of key features like air-to-air refuelling probe, Gsh-23 mm gun, pressure refueling with three drop tank configuration, improved wing navigation lamp, tandem pylon and auto-low speed recovery to name a few. Here’s a quick glance at the new features:...

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SP-21

pic courtesy: Ananth Krishnan

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Finally, the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) had approved the 83 Tejas Mk1A order. One step away from contract signature now. Hopefully before March 31, 2020.

DAC paves the way for procurement of 83 LCA Mk1A from HAL by finalising the contractual and other issues. The proposal will now be placed for consideration of Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS).

 

Ministry of Defence
In a big boost to ‘Make in India’, DAC paves way for procurement of 83 indigenous Tejas fighter aircraft for IAF
Posted On: 18 MAR 2020 5:21PM by PIB Delhi

Consequent to the separation of duties between Department of Defence (DoD) and Department of Military Affairs (DMA), the first meeting of the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) under the chairmanship of Raksha Mantri Shri Rajnath Singh was held with the Acquisition Wing being the Secretariat of the DAC. This would lead to better coordination and faster processing of cases with the Acquisition wing being in the overall charge of the Capital acquisition process.

The Light Combat Aircraft Tejas indigenously-designed by Aircraft Development Agency (ADA) under the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and manufactured by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) is going to be the backbone of Indian Air Force in future. While orders of 40 Tejas aircraft had been placed with HAL in initial configurations, DAC paved the way for procurement of 83 of the more advanced Mk1A version of the aircraft from HAL by finalising the contractual and other issues. The proposal will now be placed for consideration of Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS).
This procurement will be a major boost to 'Make in India' as the aircraft is indigenously designed, developed and manufactured with participation of several local vendors apart from HAL.

The Defence Acquisition Council also accorded approval for acquisition of indigenous Defence equipment for about Rs 1,300 crore. The proposals were for procurement of Aerial Fuses and Twin-Dome Simulators for Hawk Mk132 aircraft for the Indian Air Force.

The DAC approved an amendment to the Defence Procurement Procedure (DPP) 2016 to enable review by a Costing Committee of bids submitted by Joint Ventures of Defence Public Sector Undertakings (DPSUs)/Ordnance Factory Board (OFB)/DRDO from whom procurement of Defence items is undertaken on a nomination basis. This will bring about more transparency in costs and compress the timelines for negotiation of the contract.

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