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40 Tejas Mk1   1 x GE F404-IN20

83 Tejas Mk1A 1 x GE F404-IN20

200 MWF 1 x GE F414-INS6  (MTOW of 17,500 kgs). The first prototype is to fly by 2023 and metal cutting on that prototype is to start next month. The IAF has expressed a firm commitment to acquire the type once it enters production in 2028 to replace the Mirage-2000, MiG-29 and Jaguar fighters

XXX numbers of ORCA 2 x GE F414 - This is almost certainly going to be an IAF variant of the TEDBF fighter that'll be designed for the Indian Navy. No indication that the IAF asked for this but it will certainly be of interest to the IAF given that the ORCA is an indigenous equivalent to the MRCA of its choice, the Rafale

60-70 TEDBF 2 x GE F414 - Will replace the 45 MiG-29K/KUBs and possibly add a third squadron to allow for 1 squadron to be deployed aboard each carrier in rotation. Supposed to enter service in 2032-33 when the MiG-29Ks will be retired.

?? AMCA 2 x GE F414 - Phase 1 AMCA fighters will be equipped with the F-414 generating 98 kN thrust. Not exactly sure how many that means. The Phase 2 would be a turbofan capable of producing 110 kN of thrust.

It's a huge windfall for GE. Between 200 MWF, 60-70 TEDBF and possibly another 100 ORCA and 100 AMCA, that's 770 engines! This is where the penny wise pound foolish nature of Indian procurement makes itself evident. They won't spend $500 million to develop the Indo-French Kaveri JV turbofan saying it's too expensive. But they'll end up spending several billions of $ buying (with some local assembly) hundreds of GE turbofans.

This turbofan area is where something needs to be done. It simply doesn't make sense to not have an indigenous turbofan when several hundred indigenous fighters are to be built over the next couple of decades.

 

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Archer, is there a current estimate for when the first Mk1As will enter service and when the last Mk1A of the projected 83 is likely to be delivered?

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If they are serious with the GE414, They should seriously think swaping their M88 with too. 

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hi Blitzo,
Between March 2020- March 2021, HAL will deliver 12 Tejas Mk1 FOC fighters to the IAF. With that done, 32 Tejas Mk1 single seat fighters would've been delivered by March 2021.

That'll leave 8 Tejas Mk1 trainers, which will be delivered in the period between March 2021- March 2022.

In addition, the 83 Tejas Mk1A order includes 10 Tejas Mk1 trainers and 73 Mk1A single seaters. Those 10 Tejas Mk1 trainers will be built BEFORE the Mk1A single seaters, so they'll also be delivered between March 2021-March 2022. All Mk1A deliveries to be over by March 2028, as per current estimates.

The delivery schedule may look like this, if HAL doesn't go beyond 16 units per year. With all forward, aft and rear fuselage modules being built by private sector suppliers now and Su-30MKI production to stop next year, they could possibly scale up to 24 with another line being set up at HAL in Nashik, but that isn't for sure as of now.

Delivery Schedule if numbers don't go beyond 16 per year:

March 2018-March 2019 - 8 Tejas Mk1 IOC single seat fighters delivered to the IAF

March 2019-March 2020 - 4 Tejas Mk1 FOC single seat fighters to be delivered since FOC was granted only in February 2019
March 2020-March 2021 - 12 Tejas Mk1 FOC single seat fighters to be delivered so the second squadron is equipped
March 2021-March 2022 - 8 Tejas Mk1 FOC trainers from the first 40 batch and 8 Tejas Mk1 FOC trainers from the 83 Mk1A batch to be delivered. Total 16 trainers
March 2022-March 2023 - 2 Tejas Mk1 FOC trainers and 14 Tejas Mk1A single seat fighters
March 2023-March 2024 - 16 Tejas Mk1A single seat fighters
March 2025-March 2026 - 16 Tejas Mk1A single seat fighters
March 2026-March 2027 - 16 Tejas Mk1A single seat fighters
March 2027-March 2028 - 11 Tejas Mk1A single seat fighters and 5 Tejas Mk2 MWF single seat fighters

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Great, thanks for the thorough summary, that certainly looks like a plausible projection.

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For the Tejas Mk2 MWF production to start in 2028, the first prototype must roll out on time in late 2022 or early 2023 and the MWF must at least attain IOC level capabilities to start production. The fact that it builds on the existing Tejas Mk1 experience in systems, FCS, avionics and flight testing is a big factor in the compressed schedule for the MWF induction.

Also, by the time MWF gets ready for production, all the hiccups and production scale up issues that were seen for the Tejas Mk1 production line would have been dealt with. 

If things go according to plan, then close to 80-100 Tejas Mk2 MWF should be in service by the time the ORCA/TEDBF is ready for production.

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India cannot afford to go twin engine on N-LCA. They probably should have went with a twin-podded engine, like F125IN, for Tejas. It would have made it easier to swap out Adour in the Jags as they became familiar with F125. That would have simplified transitioning to twin F414. They might have made an earlier decision on AMCA efforts and kept both designs piggybacked on the LCA experience. As it is now there is no real surge in LCA even after two decades of announces commitments. Many promises, much foot dragging. At this point, either build LCA at promised numbers or ****-can it. Help yourself out and drop N-LCA and buy Rafale-M or Super Hornet, and go all out on the FGFA replacement.

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LOL. How much thrust do you think 2 X F-125IN produce? 40 kN in afterburner! So with 2 X F-125IN it'll produce even less thrust than the existing F-404-IN20.  Adour is no better, and heavier than the F-125IN. If anything, the IAF is VERY happy with the F-404 engine. In multiple interviews this has been mentioned. the previous Air Chief Marshal in an interview mentioned that the F-404 consumed less fuel at 7,000 ft-10,000 ft than a MiG-21 consumed at 33,000 ft. Even earlier, it has been said that the F-404 is a "fuel sipper" of an engine. Plus it's reliable.

And I don't understand what you even mean by "cannot afford". The Indian Navy is serious about going with a twin engine Deck Based Fighter and the LCA Navy Mk1 acts a technology demonstrator for that.

Your opinion is your opinion but India is now serious about indigenisation and not throwing billions of $ on imports. There most likely won't be any imported MRCBF. There will be a MiG-29K MLU possibly and there will be a Tejas Mk2 MWF.

Nobody in the forces nor in the Govt. shares your viewpoint, but you're entitled to it, so I'll let it be. Anyway this forum has people who think they know better about how to run India's procurement and development programs with a lot of condescending BS, without knowing even ABCD about it, but that's not going to change.

ACM Dhanoa interview

Watch from 17:40 onwards. the former ACM BS Dhanoa, who has flown the Tejas talks about it. "It has got a fantastic engine, very good radar,  very good man-machine interface and the Mk1A which comes in with AESA radar and other things has even better performance...". He accepts that the program is behind schedule but that HAL is doing something about it so that production goes up to 16 aircraft per year, so that one squadron is added per year.

But no one in the IAF or GoI believes that dumping it and going for foreign imports will work. In fact, it'll be the stupidest thing possible.

The current ACM is even on record in a very recent interview stating that it was easier to get contracts done through the indigenous route, apart from all the other benefits such as continuous upgrades and new weapons integration.

The 114 MRCA is very likely the last foreign fighter import, with a very remote possibility of some off-the-shelf Su-57E bought in 2030s if AMCA deadlines slide.

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Going from podded F125 to podded F4x4 is a smoother transition than single F404 to twin F414.

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And I don't understand what you even mean by "cannot afford". The Indian Navy is serious about going with a twin engine Deck Based Fighter and the LCA Navy Mk1 acts a technology demonstrator for that.

Your opinion is your opinion but India is now serious about indigenisation and not throwing billions of $ on imports. There most likely won't be any imported MRCBF. There will be a MiG-29K MLU possibly and there will be a Tejas Mk2 MWF.

Nobody in the forces nor in the Govt. shares your viewpoint, but you're entitled to it, so I'll let it be. Anyway this forum has people who think they know better about how to run India's procurement and development programs with a lot of condescending BS, without knowing even ABCD about it, but that's not going to change.

 

Indeed, everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but barely no-one outside this pink bubble believed in what the IAF, IN, HAL or ADA tells and promises. The biggest issue always in such annoncements, promisses and claims is "WILL", but given that HAL, ADA and many other promise that the Tejas WILL have this and that since years, WILL archive this and that soon and WILL be capable of but they are still considering, I won't hold my breath that we ever WILL see any N-Tejas Mk. 2, a twin-engined development or even an Orca as just recently announced and surely never ever powered by a Kaveri.

I'm very sorry, but there were too many promises and now they are again reconsidering to a fighter that is de facto nothing more than a Rafale made in India developed about then 30 years too late.

 

 

 

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I'm very sorry, but there were too many promises and now they are again reconsidering to a fighter that is de facto nothing more than a Rafale made in India...

Would be a step in the right direction.

...about then 30 years too late.

I live in the UK. There is an expression about 'the elephant in the room'. It refers to everyone pretending something enormously awkward to acknowledge is not there when it is in plain sight.  That is the situation in the Indian procurement system. There are many elephants in the room, many enormous defects and shortcomings. Hence things that can be done in reasonable time take eons to come about (if they are not cancelled when they are nearly eons late). Sad.

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LOL. How much thrust do you think 2 X F-125IN produce? 40 kN in afterburner! So with 2 X F-125IN it'll produce even less thrust than the existing F-404-IN20.  Adour is no better, and heavier than the F-125IN. If anything, the IAF is VERY happy with the F-404 engine. In multiple interviews this has been mentioned. the previous Air Chief Marshal in an interview mentioned that the F-404 consumed less fuel at 7,000 ft-10,000 ft than a MiG-21 consumed at 33,000 ft. Even earlier, it has been said that the F-404 is a "fuel sipper" of an engine. Plus it's reliable.

Check your numbers. The F125 is rated at more than 9000 lbf of wet thrust, depending on sources (and variants I guess) up to 9500 lbf. Per engine of course.

The F404 is very reliable, true. But not that economical.  This should come as no surprise considering its low bypass ratio.
Compared to an R-25 turbojet, any modern turbofan is a fuel sipper.

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Check your numbers. The F125 is rated at more than 9000 lbf of wet thrust, depending on sources (and variants I guess) up to 9500 lbf. Per engine of course.

The F404 is very reliable, true. But not that economical.  This should come as no surprise considering its low bypass ratio.
Compared to an R-25 turbojet, any modern turbofan is a fuel sipper.

Hi Eagle, I think most turbofans for fighters of the 1970s had a low bypass-ratio. I have in mind F404, RD-33, RB199 and M53. I'm not sure if the F404 has  worse specific fuel consumption compared to the others? If I had to guess, I'd say that the M53, with its single shaft, is the engine with the disadvantage, we'd want to find the figures, though. 

 

 

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Twin F125 has been 9,100 pounds of thrust on an operational level since the beginning and has been demonstrated at 9,850lbf (43.8kN) in the F125IN version. They built it modular so 12,500 pounds is attainable with COTS technology. Not bad for a sub-600 pound engine. There are alternatives to F125 they could have also opted for that were in the 9,000 to 12,000 pound ranges of thrust, but it is hard to beat F125 from a reliability angle.

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A single F125IN (max afterburner)  can produce up to  9080 lbf - https://aerospace.honeywell.com/en/learn/products/engines/f125

But a single F404 is rated between  17,700 and 19,000 lbf   https://www.geaviation.com/sites/default/files/datasheet-F404-Family.pdf

That is double the F125IN.

 

Yes, double so 2x F125 equals one F404.

The F125IN version for the Jag seems to be slightly derated. No reason to use that version outside the Jaguar. 9250 to 9500 lbf are mentioned for other applications.

More importantly though, the weight of the engines is not in F125's favour. It's not a 600 pounds engine, but 1360 lbs. That's 2720 vs about 2300 lbs for a single F404. So you would need about a 10500 lbs version to match the F404's thrust-to-weight ratio.

So even with its worse fuel consumption, a single F404 is the better alternative - unless Honeywell can offer a lot of extra thrust. In practice I mean, in theory there's the proposed advanced versions with 12500 up to 16400 lbf of thrust.

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Hi Eagle, I think most turbofans for fighters of the 1970s had a low bypass-ratio. I have in mind F404, RD-33, RB199 and M53. I'm not sure if the F404 has  worse specific fuel consumption compared to the others? If I had to guess, I'd say that the M53, with its single shaft, is the engine with the disadvantage, we'd want to find the figures, though. 

Low bypass is relative of course, when talking about fighter engines, I'd say we are in the range of 0.2 to 1 BPR.

In that context, the F404 with its about 0.3 BPR is low, whereas something like the F110-100 with its 0.87 BPR is a high bypass fighter engine.

 

Here's some figures for specific fuel consumption, dry, lb/lbf hr (from http://www.jet-engine.net/miltfspec.html)

F404-GE-400: 0.853

RD-33: 0.74

RB.199-34R-04 Mk.105: 0.637

M53-P2: 0.853

F100-PW-229: 0.726

F110-GE-100: 0.745

 

So you can see your low BPR engines like F404 or M53 use quite a bit more fuel compared to the higher BPR alternatives.

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I had a brain fart on F125 weight.  That was the weight difference between Adour and F125 per engine.  The twin F125 arrangement actually was closer to the single F404 when you add the starter/generators and engine mounts.  The twin F125 had future room for growth in the 16,000 pound range by exploiting technology available by license to Honeywell.  They also compared very favorably for Honeywell in the upfront price and lifetime costs.  F125IN sticker shock was still better than what they paid for slow procurement with the F404IN during Texas development.  

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There has been absolutely no issues with the F-404-INS6 that powered the Technology Demonstrators or the F-404-IN20 that powered the LSP and SPs. The decision was taken to power the LCA with a single engine, back when the project was in PD phase itself. And it has proven to be reliable and generally easy to maintain. So I don't see any point whatsoever in discussing this. it's like saying the Gripen should've been a twin engine jet with 2 X F-125s. It brings in no value as such to a type that is in service and doing well without any engine related issues.

The MWF is being built with a single F-414, akin to the Gripen E. So in both cases, the evolution is clear, from a light fighter to medium weight fighter, swapping a single F-404 with a higher thrust F-414 and an enlarged fuel load and payload.

The Navy is the one that felt that 2 engines was necessary due to range and payload requirements and ADA is reluctantly going with the TEDBF instead of N-LCA Mk2 with 1 X F-414. It's basically a MiG-29K class jet as a replacement for the MiG-29K.

I truly doubt the Navy's 57 MRCBF requirement will go ahead, for Rafale M or Super Hornets.

 

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https://pbs.twimg.com/media/EOs7jWvUEAAwhDW?format=jpg&name=medium

Brahmos-A. The newly resurrected No.222 'Tigersharks' squadron will be dual tasked as an Air Dominance and Maritime Strike squadron, based in South India at Thanjavur AFS in Tamil Nadu state. Will work closely with the Indian Navy to take protect India's interests in the Indian Ocean and Bay of Bengal region. Should also see detachments sent to the Andaman & Nicobar islands, with Su-30MKIs armed with the Brahmos-A  ALCM.

Finally South India gets first Su-30MKI squadron

A force induction tomorrow on India’s peninsular tip will be one of the most significant in years. A squadron of the Indian Air Force’s most capable in-service jet, the Su-30 MKI will be commissioned into a unit in Thanjavur, Tamil Nadu — a unit dusted off the shelf after it was closed down in 2011.

The 222 Squadron ‘Tigersharks’, which began life in the late sixties in Ambala with a complement of Su-7 fighters was ‘numberplated’ in 2011 after a stint with MiG-27 jets. It has been revived now to house Su-30 MKI planes marked out for the maritime role, which centres around a deterrent ethic, but includes anti-ship operations if the need arises.

India’s new Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat and IAF chief Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauria will oversee the induction on Monday in Thanjavur. The IAF’s Southern Commander and Indian Navy’s Eastern Commander will also be in attendance, all part of an emphasis on tri-service unity.

While the IAF is rightly reluctant to point deployments at any one country or threat, the positioning of Su-30s for the first time in India’s south on a permanent basis (there have been temporary detachments before) is clearly at least in part a response to Chinese activity in the Indian Ocean, and specifically the Indian military’s area of responsibility.

..

Sources tell Livefist that at least some of the Tigersharks squadron Su-30s will be modified versions capable of deploying a BrahMos-A supersonic anti-ship cruise missile. The BrahMos-A is expected to be cleared for operational service this year. The Indian Navy handles airborne anti-submarine operations with its fleet of P-8I jets stationed also in Tamil Nadu, about 300 km north of Thanjavur in Arakkonam.

The 222 Tigersharks will be the second fighter squadron in the state of Tamil Nadu. The other is the 45 Flying Daggers squadron housing the IAF’s first LCA Tejas Mk.1 jets situated 250 km east of Thanjavur in Sulur.

 

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