In a direct threat to PAF, Indian Air Force to acquire 83 New Advanced fighter Jets equipped with AESA Radars

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In a direct threat to PAF, Indian Air Force to acquire 83 New Advanced fighter Jets equipped with AESA Radars

NEW DELHI - In a direct threat to PAF, Indian Air Force to acquire 83 New Advanced fighter Jets equipped with AESA Radars.

Indian Air Force (IAF) will be getting more Tejas Ligh Combat Aircraft (LCA) soon as the government is gearing up to manufacture the 83 Mark 1A versions of the indigenous jet with improved and enhanced capabilities.

The IAF is already in the process of inducting 40 Tejas aircraft (20 in Initial Operation Clearance (IOC) and 20 in Final Operation Clearance (FOC) version with 16 fighters and 4 trainers in each), stated Minister of State, Defence, Shripad Naik in a written reply to S Muniswamy, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP from Kolar in Karnataka, in the Lok Sabha on Wednesday (February 5, 2020).

IAF already has 16 Tejas fighters in its 45 Squadron (Flying Daggers) based at Sulur Air Force Station in Tamil Nadu. Naik revealed that production of 16 Tejas fighters in IOC was completed in March 2019 and the production of 16 fighters in FOC and 8 trainers has been undertaken by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL).

The force will resurrect the 18 Squadron (Flying Bullets) after receiving more Tejas aircraft. The 18 Squadron (Flying Bullets) used to operate the ground-attack Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-27ML and was number plated in April 2016.

Tejas Mk1A has incorporated several new features to enhance its combat capabilities.

The combat aircraft has been fitted with advanced and powerful avionics, active electronically scanned radar array, weapons, electronic countermeasures (ECM) suite and also has the air to air refuelling capability to extend its fighting range.

The flight testing of Tejas Mk1A has been planned to be completed by 2022.

Tejas Mk1A will be used as a stepping stone to develop the Tejas Mark 2 medium combat aircraft (MCA) with a more powerful engine for more thrust and more weapon-carrying cap[ability.

HAL had displayed a model of Tejas Mk2 at Aero India 2019 in Bengaluru.

Designed by the Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA) and HAL, the Tejas LCA is a single-crew, single-engine, supersonic, delta wing, multirole light fighter.

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