By Anantha Krishnan M
Express News Service
Bangalore: The devotees of desi military technologies will have every reason to cheer during the upcoming air show, with India's Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Tejas, likely to cross the 2000th test flight mark. In the last 11 years, Tejas variants have together clocked 1981 flights, logging over 1200 hours. However, aviation aficionados will miss the formation flight of Tejas on the inaugural day (Feb 6), with the organisers deciding against it, sighting technical reasons.
In an interview to Express, Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA) Director P.S. Subramanyam said that one aircraft from the Limited Series Production (LSP) phase and another from the prototype flight-line will be doing the flying display duties on all five days of the show.
“During last air show we had a formation flight of 5 Tejas. This time, we are informed that there won't be any formation flights at all. However two Tejas aircraft will demonstrate various manouvering capabilities such as vertical loops, barrel rolls, low-speed flying, high-speed low-altitude flying and inverted flying,” Subramanyam.
He said the visitors will have an opportunity to get up-close with the full-fledged updated cockpit of Tejas, loaded with all possible weapons. On the menu are an R-73 missile, laser-guided bombs, 1000 lb bombs, practice bombs and the beyond-visual range missiles Derby and Astra.
“In addition to exhibiting our technological capabilities, ADA will unleash latest avionics suit for the IOC configuration. We shall put the spotlight on self-reliance India has achieved in designing and developing combat airplanes,” Subramanyam said.
The ADA chief said that the naval prototype (NP-1) of LCA will not be at the show this time. “We are planning to have a 1:1 model of the NP-1,” he said.