IOC-2 completion likely by year end
By Anantha Krishnan M
Express News Service
Bangalore: Three platforms of India's Light Combat Aircraft Tejas successfully completed advanced armament trials at Pokhran Ranges. Military sources confirm to Express that this time the focus of the trials was locked on to specific modes of releasing various weapons. The current campaign saw Tejas testing various altitude and speed combinations of 'critical nature.'
“During the just-concluded weapon trials at the forward areas of Pokhran Ranges, practice, dumb and live bombs were released. A laser-guided bomb (LGB) was also tested. The trials are important as the platform is now being tested for its conversion as a fighting machine from a successful flying platform,” sources said.
Different trials of sensors included testing of radio-altimeters, baro altitude, radars and laser. “Tejas' limited series production (LSP) variants LSP-2, LSP-3 and LSP-5 are part of the current campaign. All modes of weapon releases and all types of sensors were tested at various points in flight envelope. The campaign team is now heading for sea trials,” sources said. The Tejas variants flew at speeds between 900-1000 KMPH during the weapon trials, logging in total of 25 flights. In September 2011, Tejas had conducted weapon trials in Chandan and Pokhran Ranges, looked into accurate positions and target parameters.
With all the platforms put together, the Tejas programme has to its credit 1903 flights, cloaking 1120 hours, so far. Its makers in Bangalore will have to catch up with the lost time in the programme, especially after its Initial Operational Clearance (IOC-1) held in January 2011. “Currently we are looking into the major segments of IOC-2. We are hopeful of completing the IOC-2 parameters by the last quarter of this year,” sources said.
(Copyright@The New Indian Express)