Tarmak007 -- A bold blog on Indian defence: IAF, HAL end impasse over Tejas trainers

Saturday, June 23, 2018

IAF, HAL end impasse over Tejas trainers

By Anantha Krishnan M
BANGALORE:  The Indian Air Force (IAF) and Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) seem to have arrived on a consensus to end the stalemate over Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Tejas trainers.
Onmanorama can confirm now that IAF will have to probably wait till 2021 to get the Tejas trainer of their ‘liking.’ It means there won’t be any trainers from the first block of 20 Series Production (SP) line for now, which will be in tune with the Initial Operational Clearance (IOC) standards.
As per the original agreement, four trainers were part of the IOC block and another four from the Final Operational Clearance (FOC) production line. This production plan seems to have now being tweaked with IAF wanting all trainers fitted with the air-to-air refueling (AAR) probe. IAF also says that there cannot be two types (IOC/FOC) of Tejas trainers in its fleet.HAL on its part put up a brave fight in the last one year trying to convince IAF bosses that any change at this stage would further derail their production plans. Two and fro letters flew between HAL and IAF HQ on this contentious issue. HAL even feared a production halt, if IAF stuck to its guns.All that seems to have buried now with IAF probably getting what they wanted, may be not on time, but with delays. So if you are a diehard devotee of Tejas programme, here are some updates on trainers.
  • IAF will receive 16 fighters in the IOC format and another 16 in the FOC format. All these will be LCA MKI.
  • In the next version of 83 aircraft which are to be built as per the LCA MK1A standards, there will be 10 trainers.
  • All the 18 trainers (4+4+10) will be of LCA MK1 standards and not MK1A.
  • The first SP-Trainer will be a prototype fitted with AAR probe. Based on its successful completion of trials and acceptance by IAF, another seven will be produced in the first block of 40.
Read full report, here: http://bit.do/Writetake-Tejas

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