LCA-Mk2 and AMCA | 14 Sep 2021

Why in News

According to the Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA), LCA Tejas-Mk2 will be rolled out in 2022 and the first flight in early 2023. Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA) will be rolled out in 2024 and first flight in 2025.

  • Simultaneously, the project for development of a twin-engine deck-based fighter jet meant to fly from the Navy’s aircraft carriers is also making progress.
  • ADA is an autonomous body of the Ministry of Defence.

Key Points

  • LCA-Mk2:
    • It is a 4.5 generation aircraft which will be used by the Indian Air Force.
    • It is a replacement for the Mirage 2000 class of aircraft.
      • It has got a bigger engine and can carry 6.5 tonnes of payload.
    • The technology is already developed in Light Combat Aircraft (LCA).
      • The LCA programme began in the 1980s to replace India's ageing MiG-21 fighters.
      • The LCA is being designed and developed with ADA as the nodal agency and State-owned Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) being the principal partner.
    • Its production is likely to start somewhere around 2025.

Variants of Tejas

  • Tejas Trainer: 2-seater operational conversion trainer for training air force pilots.
  • LCA Navy: Twin- and single-seat carrier-capable for the Indian Navy.
  • LCA Tejas Navy MK2: This is phase 2 of the LCA Navy variant.
  • LCA Tejas Mk-1A: This is an improvement over the LCA Tejas Mk1 with a higher thrust engine (Air Force).
  • LCA Tejas Mk-2: Following the Mk-1A is the Mk-2 which will provide a high degree of manoeuverability.
  • Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA):
    • About:
      • It is a fifth generation aircraft. And will be used by the Indian Air Force.
      • It is a stealth aircraft, i.e. designed for stealth and unlike the LCA, which is designed for maneuverability.
        • It has a unique shape to achieve low radar cross-section and has an internal carriage of weapons.
        • When the external weapons are removed, this aircraft has enough fuel and weapons inside to do a very capable operational role in stealth mode.
    • Range:
      • Over 1,000 km up to 3,000 km in different modes.
    • Variants and Engine:
      • It has two variants Mk-1 and Mk-2, While AMCA Mk-1 will have an imported engine, same as LCA Mk-2, the AMCA Mk-2 will have an indigenous engine.
    • Manufacturing:
      • The manufacturing and production of the aircraft will be through a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV), which will also have participation of private industry.

Source: TH