LCA News and Discussions

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suryag
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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby suryag » 16 Apr 2011 14:16

Bless you Ananth Krishnan, I was seriously having withdrawal symptoms :( due to lack of news on Tejas(tarmak reported it wouldnt have updates until June)
IAF on Tejas Squadron formation mode; LSP-7&8 will join flight line soon: ADA

I didnt understand the important parts

An ADA source says that fuel change mode for LSP-7was tested successfully on LSP-1 platform recently

is this fuel change mode something they do in-flight ?

In the days ahead we will have various tests including parameter identification [PID], flutter tests, weapon trials, brake fuel modification testing and evaluation, sensor evaluation and PID in sub-sonic mode


I saw this video on a-380 flutter test, apparently it is the most difficult one
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ImSuZjvkATw

Are crosswind landings done ?
Last edited by suryag on 16 Apr 2011 16:10, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby krishnan » 16 Apr 2011 16:06

Cold weather flight trials (Phase 1) carried out successfully at Leh. Night flying trials (Phase 1) completed. Crosswind take off and landing carried out successfully. Initial Operational Clearance (IOC) is scheduled to be completed by December 2010.


http://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&q=cac ... Z36Q&pli=1

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby suryag » 16 Apr 2011 16:08

Thanks Krishnan garu

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby VishalJ » 17 Apr 2011 03:48


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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby brvarsh » 17 Apr 2011 04:47

Seems to be a stupid question but what does BRF'ts think about LCA potentially be exported to Afghanistan? I think a well equipped squadron with bvr capability stationed in forward bases of Afghanistan would be good enough to deter any future misadventures. Has anyone shown export interests yet?

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby SaiK » 17 Apr 2011 06:22

answer yourself first why do you think afghanistan needs 4++ generation fighter?

and where do they have that much money to buy an LCA worth $55M fly off each?

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby shiv » 17 Apr 2011 06:43

brvarsh wrote:Seems to be a stupid question but what does BRF'ts think about LCA potentially be exported to Afghanistan? I think a well equipped squadron with bvr capability stationed in forward bases of Afghanistan would be good enough to deter any future misadventures. Has anyone shown export interests yet?


With respect may I ask you to think what sort of Air Force Afghanistan needs and why BVR capability is so important for a nation where soldiers have fought for decades with no air support. I think the "knights jousting" romance of dogfights and BVR get too much attention while the real work that an air force needs to do involves ground support - either mud moving or transport of troops, material and casualties.

The Afghan Air force could do with a dozen ALH Dhruv and half a dozen LCH. The Tejas will be of no use with or without BVR missiles. BVR is more than seeing a target on a radar screen and firing off a missile. Of course that can be done but unless you are sure of whom you are trying to hit - you may hit a friendly or a civilian aircraft and if you fail to hit a hostile aircraft he will take you out soon unless you have all sorts of back up. Knowing how the world works I would imagine that the Americans would arrange for a Paki F-16 to shoot down an unsupported Afghan Tejas to show potential customers how it is better for small nations to buy F-16s rather than Tejas.

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby chackojoseph » 17 Apr 2011 09:28

SaiK wrote:with a real high political cost? we can arrange more difficult dummy targets than libyan tanks, perhaps testing some of the longer ranged helinas (q: is that planned for tejas with multi-racks like brimstone on tornadoes?)


I had earlier typed a reply for this. Then discarded. Relooking at it, I don't think there is a high political cost to it. Instead there is an political advantage, IMHO. It would see, India will to be featured in Global prime time. There is a feeling that emerging powers are still not ready to show commitment like western powers have.

IN has been able to fire the first shot against Somali pirates and rest of the fishes accepted it and we were not criticised.

The real issue is that we tend to look at air power via Indian eyes. In past we have been told that Air Power means escalation on border and should not be employed withing India. Where as, Air Power is seen a basic necessity in the west. Fight via air and get less soldiers killed on ground.

I had written the earlier comment in sarcasm, but, I think LCA pounding tanks in Libya can send in a message. Dummies don't give it a war time experience. Nothing like operating in a hostile or war like environment.

This is IMHO onlee!

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby SaiK » 17 Apr 2011 09:37

Chacko... we have a long way to for LCA to get FoC. Libya can't wait till 2012. And secondly, we are deviating quite a bit here going by our history in participating in NATO exercise. Indirectly, are you suggesting we join NATO?

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby chackojoseph » 17 Apr 2011 09:51

As I said in my reply, I was sarcastic in my suggestion. EF, acquires a recent A2G apacity and it is sent to Libya and then it gets a tested in war tag and to close the mouths of doubters in UK.

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby VishalJ » 19 Apr 2011 08:36

KH2004 returning back to terra firma, chute deployed & slowing down > http://www.airliners.net/photo/1903800/L/

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby chackojoseph » 19 Apr 2011 09:18

Vishal Jolapara wrote:KH2004 returning back to terra firma, chute deployed & slowing down > http://www.airliners.net/photo/1903800/L/


Looking at the airbrake deployment near the tail, its a good thing to do. How many a/c have airbrakes near the tail?

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby Karan M » 21 Apr 2011 05:12

tsarkar wrote:Karan, you keep posting selective points supporting your PoV, that don’t communicate the full picture, that I will clarify below -


Unfortunately that is something you do. Furthermore, you lack civility when responding to people who respond to your increasingly aggressive queries patiently. Frankly, I see no point in your approach. If you expect respectful replies, lay off the sarcasm and acrimony.

With regards to the FBW system, you description covers only the digital FBW system that Dassault, a private company, was developing for the Rafale and felt their global commercial interests might be affected if this technology was given out. The analogue system was not even considered by ADA. It is incidents like this, where IAF operational criteria were snubbed, that resulted in IAF losing interest. Nowhere does AM PR mention in his book that IAF requirements increased weight.


This is absolutely wrong & nowhere did SR Valluri even make any claims of this sort & nor do successive accounts of what happened bear you out. The facts of the matter are that Dassault did not inspire confidence in the Indian developers who were the ultimate judge of what was feasible. If they had been the best vendor, they would have won as they did for the design consultancy. His points clearly note that that particular firms push at the time were hardly around meeting Indian requirements but more about we really dont need to share info with you folks, because the deal is as good as ours.

Not sure where you get these specs from, but the ones I know is atleast 100 km for 5 m sq target, that is pretty normal even in 1985.


My specs are from public information shared by the developers and the users. 100 km for a 5Sq Mtr target is NOT the benchmark set for the LCA MMR - point 1, and second, neither the "best" IAF MiG-29 & Mirage 2000 radars were able to achieve this way back in 85. Ranges apart, the performance achieved by the MiG-29 & Mirage 2000 suffered from several operational restrictions. The MiG-29 WCS in particular was infamous for its limitations in certain engagement criteria and heavily dependent on ground based GCI.

FWIW, F-16A/B presents 3 m sq in frontal aspect in A2A role. Hence, here also, no super performance specs were set.


That FWIW would be incorrect - as there are no standard F-16 A/B RCS measurements. With Have series RCS improvements, the RCS could be significantly lower. And with payload, the RCS could be significantly higher.

I do wish Harry was still around because he would have had the patience & time to share all the details which you quite clearly missed.

Compared to the relatively primitive MiG-29 and Mirage 2000-H radar, the expectations set for the LCA MMR were a generation ahead, 10 target TWS, dual target engage, 100 km PLUS range against a small fighter class target, ground mapping modes, TFR, multi-PRF operation autoselected for keeping track of targets in various conditions, maneuver/weather, both close combat & BVR modes, including raid assessment & ECCM features. Its instructive to note that NONE of the IAF radars of that generation had but a fraction of the capabilities expected of the LCA's MMR when looked at in entirety, considering size and weight constraints. As matter of fact, some of these capabilities are yet to arrive for the Mirage 2000 and MiG-29, and that too via upgrades circa 2011 onwards.

quote="Karan M"] Now, you keep mentioning without proof that IAF used Zhuk ME and APG-68 V(9) as benchmarks, when IAF wasn’t even aware of these radars, nor were details of these available at that point of time. This is obfuscation of facts. You need to compare with Thomson RDM radar in service with Mirage 2000 in late 80s early 90s.


It would serve you better to actually understand what I wrote before misinterpreting what i noted & claiming that the IAF used radars which did not exist as benchmarks. One thing I have observed about your comments - you generally lack the ability to civilly disagree with folks and ask for data, but tend to reply with provocative comments "obfuscation of facts" - it seems.

As matter of fact, I pointed out that the IAF expectations of what the MMR should be were beyond radars operated by them at the time and represent radars which exist TODAY as versus the radars that existed then. That was the basic point and one which you know get to, when you say compare it with the Thomson RDM radar. Thats the entire crux of the issue, the specifications for the MMR were leading edge & are still competitive.

Karan M wrote:It also was to have Doppler Mapping, DBR (A2G ranging) and Terrain Following Modes.

>> The requirements were Air to Ground ranging and Terrain Following Modes. Well even the RDM radars on Mirage 2000 delivered late 80s early 90s had these very basic air to ground modes. The ONLY reason why the Mirage 2000 was Air to Ground capable was because the radar did Air to Ground ranging! The Mirage 2000 needs this radar mode because it does not have a laser rangefinder like the Jaguar and MiG-27 carry in their chiseled nose. Eureka!!! Air-to-Ground ranging mode on radar avoids having to carry a laser rangefinder!!! So it was required in the multi-role LCA.


Selective pick & choose again - assuming that I did not know a basic fact such as that the Mirage 2000 does not have a LRF as on the MiG-27 or the LRMTS on the Jaguar!

The issue is not just of having one set of modes, but the entire quantum of modes that the MMR was expected to have, including close combat modes, long range modes (including VS), TWS and getting best in class results of more than 100 km against a small target, while able to sustain dual targets. And all these to be assumed in a form factor of 130 odd kgs, which places a premium on LRU consolidation. The LCA MMR is but of a few which have adopted the ERP concept.

Even the Hunter and MiG-21 could drop bombs and fire rockets, and they did have ballistic computers. A laser rangefinder like Jaguar/MiG-27 or Air to Ground ranging mode in radar significantly improves air to ground accuracy even with unguided bombs. Incidentally, even the Tejas PV uses Litening Pod as a rangefinder while dropping unguided bombs. If you notice IAF exhibition, Aero India, etc Mirage 2000 armament fit, you'll notice the Matra Belouga submunition dispenser. Now these dispensers have very exact deployment envelopes to be effective, otherwise the mass of submunitions may end up hitting nearby friendly forces or result in area denial of adjoining target areas. So, unlike MiG21 rocket fire or bomb runs, they need the accuracy afforded by RDM radar air to ground ranging mode, since the Belouga never had laser guidance because these kits were expensive those days.


This is known stuff & you are rebutting something which was never said. The issue was not whether the IAF requires A2G modes, the issue was of the manner in which everything but the kitchen sink was added to the functional specifications for the LCA, with very challenging weight/size constraints making achieving these performance figures a huge challenge, so much so that even several partners demurred.

Here is what is interesting. No IAF fighter has had these features before Kopyo radar in late 2000's and that too Kopyo range is not even half that of LCA radar.

Correction, Thomson RDM already had these modes and A2A performance in 80s & 90’s. You are incorrectly implying IAF learnt about radars and Air to Ground modes only when the Kopyo entered service late 2000’s.


Your correction would be wrong.

Merely because you are cherrypicking statements and then claiming that others are "incorrectly implying" what is in actuality correct. The Bison was the first A2A plus multirole capable fighter in the IAF to introduce the *combination* of A2A BVR with ARH (implying shots made in TWS moving to high grade tracking for dual BVR shots) AND also have a robust combination of A2G modes including SAR.

The IAF did not have ANY radar that matches the quantum of capabilities the MMR was expected to bring till it got the Bisons and the Elta sets way later. The only radar that somewhat matches the Bisons capabilities was the limited ELTA 2032 upgrade earmarked for the Jaguar, but it never received the long range BVR integration.

Its only with the Su-30 MKI, decades thence that the IAF finally got the true-multirole set it required. FYI - the Mig-29 radar would actually lose track of multiple bogies when it switched to STT for engaging fighters with its Alamo. The Russians sought to compensate for this by moving the processing offboard and then feeding it back to the pilot using a datalink. The upgrades done thereafter for the IAF were limited in scope and the IAF today is seeking to replace this set with the Zhuk ME, because all said and done, the N019 can be dressed up only so much, even if it remains competitive against the vast array of junk the PAF/PLAAF have, it has lost its edge a while back against the sets the PRC is fielding. The RDM radar had limitations versus the N0-19 on the MiG-29, despite being on paper being credited with a 111 km range and a host of "basic A2G functions"!! IAF MiG-29 pilots went on record noting the same. The MMR specifications were far more ambitious than either.

Rewind to 1993. During those years, IAF was evaluating Su-30 and MiG-21 Bison packages. The MiG-21 Bison contract was signed in March 1996. Su-30 MKI package was signed in November 1996. Hence IAF knew the capabilities of the Kopyo and Bars very well in 1996. And IAF set more stringent air to ground performance specifications for Bars Mk3 in 1996! So “No IAF fighter has had these features before Kopyo radar in late 2000's” is another piece of misinformation on your part.


Cherrypicking statements again while accusing others of misinformation. Civility goes out of the window, whilst winning the arguement by all means takes precedence. The MMR did not come about in 1993, FYI - the MMR specifications were drawn up earlier, while looking at the "best in class" systems of that era, which were the APG-66 and the APG-65 series. As the IAF evaluated more and more systems, they asked for more, but even if it were true it only adds to the point that the IAF kept adding to the specifications based on in development sets which took decades to mature. Heck, the IAF is still looking for achieving the MTBF promised by Russia for the Kopyo-21 circa 91-93, in 2011.

Furthermore, if you see IAF requirements circa 2003-05, SAR has been added to LCA radar. Because now latest fighter radars come with SAR.

>>Yes, otherwise the ELTA processors containing SAR processing algorithms could not have been budgeted or purchased, could it? If you’re buying the processors for A2A mode, why not buy the A2G mode as well?


Mixing up cause & effect, I'm afraid. The SAR mode was not purchased as afterthought - it was purchased because it was the key driver the HAL team had not been able to deliver and ADA was certain that it would not be available in enough time to keep the LCA program running. The A2A mode for the LCA had already been tested against several targets and demonstrated reasonable performance. The IAF noted that they wanted both & the signal processing in the radar would have to be redesigned for high resolution A2G mapping which is what SAR requires. The IAF wants SAR because the IAF wants the LCA to be multirole from the word go, and it wants top of the line capabilities.

Another gross misinformation. Where is it mentioned that the 130 kg radar weight was IAF specification? ADA could include 260 kg or 390 kg or 520 kg radar weight as long as flight and maneuverability criteria were met.


What gross misinformation? Just because you are unaware of certain things does not mean that everyone is similarly disadvantaged! Your statement is akin to saying that make us a MiG-21 sized plane - we dont care what size radar goes into it, as long as the aircraft is of x dimensions and can do y job! Will the developers then squeeze in a 500 kg radar then? Instead of arguing for arguements sake, admit where the issue is. The requirements demanded of the LCA "we want Mirage 2000/MiG-29 style performance in bases that can handle MiG-21s" - words to that effect spoken right in front of me by an AF guy - implies every system has to be optimized to extreme limits, putting significant strains on technology development. Contrast that to the clean sheet given to Sukhoi and the approach adopted by them when developing the Flanker - yes, we know our electronics are heavy, so lets develop the airframe to compensate, and the AF guys agreed. Kota Harinarayana went on record at a public event noting design specifications led by the IAF were about a MiG-29/Mirage 2000 equivalent able to tangle with a F-16!! And you wont get this on google or the net, either.

The fact is a fact - a 130 kg radar has to perform as much as 220kg one, when the latter has been developed by one of the best radar houses on the planet because the specifications demanded of it are extreme! Thats the same darn reason the developers have been looking for ambitious and hard to achieve solutions, such as combining the ERP into one package, which experience has now been used for other projects!!

Wrong, the IAF did not specify weight and the capabilities were present in Mirage RDM radar in the 80s & 90's as well. How does one expect the Mirage 2000 to fire the Super 530D missile if the radar doesn’t have a search range of atleast 100 km and tracking range of atleast 70 km to cue the 40 km ranged missile?


Hardly wrong! Because you are merely cherrypicking one data point & extrapolating it to the *package* expected of the MMR. The RDM has a range of 111 odd km against a 5 Sq Mtr target and that too in ideal conditions. There are several who would disagree about what that era of radar could and could not achieve!! The MMR is expected to have significantly more range given its baseline performance is expected against a smaller sized RCS and not only that, it is expected to be lighter, more robust, have better all round performance against a wide range of criteria. Not going to post the exact numbers I am afraid - even if there were once declared publically.

In specifications expected, the French radar that most closely compares to the MMR is the RDY-2, developed a decade after the RDM and then the RDY. Unlike the MMR, it actually uses dual TWT to get an average power of 800 W (the MMR has 650W) & drive its performance - again, another indication of how the MMR effort has had to optimize LRU count and develop each system keeping stringent weight & volume constraints in mind.

Karan M wrote:Every engine generates ample electricity, so it is factually incorrect. Its absurd to note the Mk1 has deadweight infrastructure for EW systems that will go in Mk2. Basic rule of aeronautical engineering is to avoid carrying deadweight. So operational Tejas Mk.1 will not carry deadweight infrastructure for Mk2.
[/quote]

The only thing absurd is how far the forum has deteriorated when a conversation which would have otherwise lead to information sharing has folks like you seeking to always score one up! "Every engine generates ample electricity" - tell me something new! And perhaps that is the reason why the Su-30 MKIs cannot handle the Irbis? Or is it that "every engine that generates ample electricity" has to be coupled with dedicated power generation/transfer equipment able to handle and supply the correct voltage/current required by disparate systems. But I tire of this useless bickering.

You speak of it being "absurd that the MK1 LCA has deadweight infrastructure for the LCA MK2". Tell me, what do you know of the LCA MK2? Go on, educate me.

And for the record, since I really don't have the time to dig out and reply to your statements about EW systems & the LCA fit - pretty much everything you said there was mistaken as well. The LCA ECM is multidirectional. AESA equipped current gen state of the art systems DO approach all round coverage provided platform space/power constraints are provided & an Indian upgrade actually provides for near complete protection, beyond the limited frontal sector & is already under acquisition.

So tell me about the LCA MK2. Tell me about its avionics systems, its expected LRUs, what systems were meant to be on the original LCA and what the designers have planned for & already incorporated! Go beyond stuff on the net. Do inform me of the detailed avionics & systems planned for that aircraft. I'd love to see some actual statements about the reality from actual aeronautical engineers & those who actually worked on the plane - as I have had the opportunity to hear what some of those kind folks say, as versus internet vehemence about what is "absurd" and what is not.
Last edited by Karan M on 21 Apr 2011 06:36, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby VishalJ » 21 Apr 2011 05:33

chackojoseph wrote:
Vishal Jolapara wrote:KH2004 returning back to terra firma, chute deployed & slowing down > http://www.airliners.net/photo/1903800/L/


Looking at the airbrake deployment near the tail, its a good thing to do. How many a/c have airbrakes near the tail?


Not Many. The only aircraft flying currently with that feature IIRC is the BAe Avro 146
Image

Amongst Fighters, the Blackburn Buccaneer had it
Image

Closest a modern fighter would get to is the Solah with airbrakes besides the elevators
Image

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby Karan M » 21 Apr 2011 06:18

Rohit - my comments below. I find myself coming less & less on BRF. So I am going to apologize in advance if I really dont reply to your issues in detail or in a timely fashion.

rohitvats wrote:Karan, first and foremost, thank you for taking the effort for putting up that post. Many people on BRF, including me, are more learned and aware because of that and the effort is really appreciated.


The pleasure was mine, and I'd like to thank you & all of those who appreciated whatever limited information I provided. I apologize for not mentioning each of you by name, but thank you each and every one.

Now coming to the points made by you.

First, the point of contention is factual rather than interpretation of events as observed by a particular person. PR cannot be non-biased in one instance and biased in another – I consider his every point in his book to be authentic – whether for or against services.


Rohit - thats not how analysis works. In every field, in every effort like this, you'll have differences of opinion and 2-3 interpretations of the same event. In some cases, you have to make a judgement call - was this guy present when x happened, what were his biases/filters, was the other guy there or not? When you put all these things together, you get a more nuanced view. In this particular case - it was SR Valluri who was responsible for the FBW selection, he was part of the group that did the work, his is a ringside view of what actually went on. PR became associated in depth with the LCA later. From then on, it is his view which is the more accurate. Ie, do you take SR Valluris rants about the LCA program even when guys like PR were in charge, or do you note that now SRV is an outsider acting like a critic, but not one with all the facts at hand. Also, PR is a PM. At his level, his job is to set high level strategy, get to details for the critical tasks (on the critical path) and leave the rest to the groups which would have built up maturity. In such cases, the actual details would be available to the actual guys who work on the subsystem/issue in question versus the PM and even the head who takes a report from the PM. So, in a nutshell, in this particular case, SRV is the authoritative source on what went on behind the scenes with the FBW issue, as versus PR who would have received second hand, third hand info about what AHQ wanted & what it did not receive, without witnessing how the vendor negotiations went.


as the LCA program used by the scientific community for R&D purpose and with the aim to develop the aeronautical industry in this country and catch up with the west (as alluded in the book)? Especially, after the break from HF-24 days? If yes, there is nothing wrong in it. But at the same time, was proper assessment done of the timeframe and work required to achieve the target? Were we trying to marry two seemingly opposite requirement at the same time? And what was the priority given to the timely delivery of the operational fighter for IAF with all the bells and whistles?


Of course they were riding two horses! Thats the whole point about why the LCA was so hard!! Theres little point now in pointing fingers, but if the HF-24, 73 had been cleared and things had gone on as planned and were funded accordingly, the LCA team would never had to face such a huge task! Of course, a proper assessment was done. At the time, they actually did a detailed list of Indian industrial capabilities, where we would require help and even sought to bring in the private sector as the lead partners (who promptly took one look and said, thanks but no thanks!). The deadlines were set around two critical factors - uninterrupted funding (which never happened), and cooperation with key partners (some chosen by then GOI for political reasons, as far as one can decipher today, and which went cancelled post 1998 explosions). I am not going to dwell on which issues impacted how. My understanding is based on public sources, but at the end of the day, if some arms control guy has his work done by our posts, then thats not good stuff. The third factor, was the Indian IT boom and disregard of the GOI in maintaining talent via extraordinary measures. All said and done, the will was never lacking from the LCA teams end, the resources, certainly so & they still are. Compare the aerospace infrastructure set up in China, and India, and the differences are stark. Yes, ROI is an issue there, efficiency as well, but dearth of resources - not at all, and such national will draws partnerships.

ake the FBW requirement – whose idea was it to have FBW in the first place on the fighter? Did the IAF ask for FBW for the original MiG-21 replacement they had in mind? Or was the ASR issued with FBW after the demand from the scientific community that FBW be developed for the fighter in India? The same PR notes that in 1988, Air Commodore Krishnaswamy wrote a report critical of timeframe being projected in the Project Definition Phase (PDP) for the development of new technologies, flight testing, and validation of technologies and subsequent delivery of the operational fighter for the IAF.
And hence, advised for the TD route of development.


FBW was a requirement drawn up both by the IAF and agreed to by the scientific community. Way back, the original LCA did not have FBW, but nor was it the LCA of 83 and then 95. It was meant to be a light aircraft capable of limited A2A, A2G and training, drawn up in Idris Latifs time. Thereafter, AHQ came up with a revised set of requirements which were far more ambitious. The first look at FBW came about when the HAL design veterans asked if they could do a R&D project - iirc modifying a stock HF-24 with FBW or the like, or developing a FBW system on another aircraft (my notes should have the correct type, but I dont have them), but as could be expected the MOD representative shot down the idea. Why develop FBW, when all HAL had to do was license produce aircraft - that was the reason. We then paid for these decisions later, in terms of starting from scratch. The British had FBW on a Jaguar, then they had the EAP before the Typhoon, which in itself is a multinational effort..
But lets take a look at the operational need. The IAF wanted a MiG-21 form factor aircraft able to tackle the F-16 or be a peer. Nothing less, nothing more. That meant FBW. They were not interested in a mid-way design like the F-20 Tigershark or the like. If you do a LRU by LRU comparison of the LCA versus the MiG-29, Mirage 2000 - its instructive. The LCA has pretty much everything these types do. But it doesnt have the volume or space. Now just think of the stress on the design crew from the technology angle and design angle. Not only does their design have to be top notch/world class, but the technology has to be likewise, and the designers instead of doing a partial PM function, also have to incubate local industry to deliver the goods. Compare and contrast the Gripen guys - sourced equipment from across the world. Even more so, the AIDC Ching Kuo guys - Garrett Turbofans, LM design & radar, US FBW, avionics..concentrated on the design (that too with significant support), rest procure from established suppliers. The LCA flows from the experiences of 1971 - we had to go around the world shopping for arms and munitions. Sam supposedly even met a famous UK arms dealer for basic infantry small arms ammo because the Russians couldnt get us that - hence the genesis of the renewed emphasis on OFB during RG's era and then programs like the LCA and Arjun. So - developing a local industry was not a pie-in the sky scientific aim. It had reason behind it. Second, the IAF faced actual operational reasons for a fighter threat - the F-16. But its instructive to note they picked on the F-16 and not the Mirage or F-7s as the airframes to beat, and they went overboard asking for Mirage and MiG-29 level performance from an aircraft which was to fit the logistical footprint of the MiG-21 (saving the IAF money in base redesign and what not).

Now, let us come to the dynamics of short-listing consultants for the development of FBW system. So, apart from the bonhomie between RG and Nixon, the ADA was not sure of the learning they could gain from the Dassault guys? As PR points out in his book, was the technological requirement given precedence over operational requirement when deciding on the FBW partner?


It was RG and RR not Nixon as far as i remember. Nixon loathed IG (and I guess vice versa). RG otoh received a pretty warm welcome from RR. And you are misunderstanding the entire point here. Its not about "technological requirement" of "learning" taking precedence, because you are trying to accommodate what happened with what PR said. It was a case of "whom do you trust". Here you have a bunch of vendors, who accurately tell you whats what, tell you what they will share and wont - and one more, who does not share data, makes statements whose veracity you have serious queries about, and at the end, says, it really does not matter, since politics will decide the deal in Delhi. If you decide to go for this vendor, its a big risk, SR Valluri says as much.

The same book also clearly stated how the time frame of the first flight of TD-1 was grossly overestimated by even likes of Kota and Kalam (1996) versus when it actually happened.


I see no reason why that part is not true. As matter of fact, one of the big things that "changed" when KH took over the program on a full time basis is regular monitoring, and less "high level lets motivate the team by making unreasonable timelines and push them" to "whats achievable". One cynic did remark that these guys needed to do more risk analysis and put more buffer, but then the Indian system does not appreciate conservative planning. Politicians want ideal scenarios to fund. Its a crucial weakness of our system, only mitigated in the last decade or so,

I cannot comment on the radar specs issue for I have no knowledge of it.

Karan, no one, least of me, doubts the tremendous difficulty against which LCA has come up (including IAF top-brass expecting it to never reach TD phase) and the spin-offs it has already has had – with IJT being the prime example. However, my point of contention is different – I’m of the opinion that in the requirement for development of domestic mil-ind complex, the timeframe for the operational requirement for the IAF was sacrificed. I don’t think one can hide behind the “boost to domestic aeronautical industry” (actually base of modern aeronautics in India) argument to justify the delay.


Fair enough but what is this "hiding behind .." business? This again, goes back to picking sides, when the issue is What you should know is very straightforward - the LCA has had two aims from day one. It has to succeed in both. Both are vital, one is to get the IAF a fighter, the other to develop a local industry. The IAF, unfortunately, to some extent has yet to realize the long term strategic nature of the latter, some leaders have vision, some dont, and efforts around the same go in bits and pieces (no IAFRL for example, like the US AFRL). What you are not getting is that it has been a concerted effort made by many to ensure that the LCA does not take off. Its simple economics. Today an average fighter costs around $80 Million upwards, and over its lifetime, will add another $160 Million in lifetime costs. These are not minor numbers. India becoming a fighter manufacturing nation has huge ramifications. Hence the dime a dozen sanctions, the constant disparagement, and the efforts to cancel the program - all said & done though the GOI had had some sections who persevered with their support despite all odds. The other factor, apart from the technological challenges & the underestimation of effort, the sanctions etc, are the ultra ambitious specifications set by the IAF for an "operational requirement". In 1999, when the IAF almost went to war - the bulk of the PAF F-7 fleet was equipped either with basic ranging radars or did not even have A2A sets - the F7PGs were just being delivered at the time, and later it was admitted they didnt even have radars. While the IAF was debating whether the MiG-29 was better or the Mirage 2000 - the PAF went and purchased every Mirage 3/V airframe it could lay its hand on. Over the decade, its strike capabilities went from near zilch to something that was fairly respectable. The problem with the IAF has been that it has sought the best, and often neglected "good enough" especially when it comes to local & second, it has still not built up the institutional mindset that develops local capabilities. Here is a story narrated at a public event by a LCA TP - he noted that when he visited a USAF base, he asked whom it was named after. The USAF guy said, after one of the many TPs we lost during the Cold War when we were making planes left right and center, and losing pilots like anything. My point here is not to say this is an approach we mimic (loss of valuable human lives) but to point to how closely the US industry and AF were integrated (with the AF taking such losses) to gain that vital competitive edge over the Russian rival. In the Soviet Union - money was no object, as they set up cities, around building systems or even components. Heard of the Almaz Antei consortium? The makers of the S-3XX series etc. It has 46 plants last I remember. And that is one system provider. So moral of the story - you get what you pay for.

Want the LCA developed double quick , meeting both operational requirements & developing industry? Invest accordingly, keep specifications reasonable and get the customer to invest in the product as a partner not a customer.

And not all the delay was because of the funding – it was also because of the technological choices made by the scientific community in the beginning. They wanted to learn and it was a painful learning experience - where we wanted to deliver a Ferrari when Amby was foreign maal and to get everything done on time.


Funding is tied to delay, lets not forget this. Go to tarmak007 and read about the FBW development. When your team starts losing folks left right and center to better paying IT jobs, its an issue that deserves consideration. Why do you think the HAL radar effort was not upto spec? HAL management just didn't get what funding the MMR to full levels would entail (and PSU rules no doubt added to the problem). Skilled manpower retention is by far one of the biggest areas where the GOI did not pay adequate attention as much as it could have

People here comment about the ASR changes in 2004-05 period in the same breadth as IA changing GSQR for Arjun tank. If the aircraft is to come up in operational service as of 2013-14, can it continue with the ASR designed for the fighter to enter service in late 90s or early 2000s?


Chicken and egg isnt it? Keep adding to ASRs so that the program gets delayed, and then note the delay means another ASR revision! This is not a unique problem! The Brits and many others faced it, suffered it, and solved it by adopting the MK1, MK2 etc process with iterative block development! The US adopted the Block system. In India, the IAF has had to be cajoled to accepting a similar approach to the MK1 and MK2, but with significant resistance, at least initially. BTW, the interesting part is that even without the ASR changes the LCA would have been superior in some aspects to several types like the Bison which will stick around for longer than 2014 etc.

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby Gagan » 21 Apr 2011 09:20

Just seen a news clip on NDTV India.

The TATA group has signed a deal with Lockheed Martin. They will build parts for the C-130J to begin with.

They are also in talks with Eurofighter GMBH, Lockheed martin to perhaps build MMRCA.
They are also hoping to set up a company to produce the LCA. The news claims that the production rate could be ramped up from the current 8/year to hold your breath 120/year !!!

Take it FWIW.
Will watch the news bulettin again and re-post with corrections etc.

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby chackojoseph » 21 Apr 2011 09:57

Vishal Jolapara wrote:Looking at the airbrake deployment near the tail, its a good thing to do. How many a/c have airbrakes near the tail?


Not Many. The only aircraft flying currently with that feature IIRC is the BAe Avro 146
Image[/quote]

Thanks mate.

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby Kailash » 21 Apr 2011 11:12

Gagan wrote:They are also hoping to set up a company to produce the LCA. The news claims that the production rate could be ramped up from the current 8/year to hold your breath 120/year !!!


:eek: And where are the buyers, radars, engines?

Even coming from NDTV, would say that DDM BS until further details emerge.

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby Indranil » 22 Apr 2011 06:53

Where is LSP 7,8?

I can understand that LCA Navy is taking longer than expected. People are researching there.

But wasn't LSP 6 supposed to be the production standard. What is taking 7 and 8 months and months?!!

What am I missing?

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby Gurneesh » 22 Apr 2011 07:06

^^^ It is things like these that make even the supporters doubt HAL/ADA capabilities let alone those who were already skeptical.

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby rajanb » 22 Apr 2011 08:59

There seems to be a lot of LCA activity in Bangalore this week, starting Monday. I have sighted the LCA at least two times a day if not more. So maybe the LSP7 & 8 are undergoing flight testing before release to the IAF.

Cheers.

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby VishalJ » 25 Apr 2011 01:32

chackojoseph wrote:
Vishal Jolapara wrote:Not Many. The only aircraft flying currently with that feature IIRC is the BAe Avro 146

Thanks mate.
You're Welcome.

Here's KH2004 on two wheels from slightly closer-up than the earlier shot > http://www.airliners.net/photo/1907685/L/

I'm editing a new photo of KH2005 in a higher resolution which is a closer crop & should show a little more of Tejas' air-brake details.

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby Prasad » 25 Apr 2011 02:06

This picture of the Tornado shows air brakes at the rear too.

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby VishalJ » 25 Apr 2011 02:16

^ Nice, Thanks for posting that.
I do go through Chris' photos often, he's a twitter & flickr friend of mine.

:oops: Never paid much attention to the Tornado but yes its air-brakes are pretty much similar to Tejas' only differance being the direction of their movement.

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby chackojoseph » 25 Apr 2011 09:42

I always thought that top end portion of the a/c was useless and should be put in use. Always hated the sight of spoilers on the wings as pilots attention starts going there. Russia idea of putting it behind cockpit was good too.

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby suryag » 26 Apr 2011 10:38

flight test update

LCA-Tejas has completed 1623 Test Flights successfully. 01-Apr-2011).
(TD1-233,TD2-305,PV1-242,PV2-205,PV3-272,LSP1-65,LSP2-173,PV5-33,LSP3-39,LSP4-35,LSP5-21)

to

LCA-Tejas has completed 1636 Test Flights successfully. 21-Apr-2011).
(TD1-233,TD2-305,PV1-242,PV2-205,PV3-273,LSP1-67,LSP2-174,PV5-36,LSP3-42,LSP4-37,LSP5-22)

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby merlin » 26 Apr 2011 16:22

Looks like from PV3 onwards, something is being tested on all aircraft.

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby Singha » 26 Apr 2011 22:04

one night flight today.

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby merlin » 27 Apr 2011 14:12

Yes, it was damn loud. There also have been many flights by a twin turboprop over the last week, wonder what that was.

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby SaiK » 27 Apr 2011 15:05

merlin wrote:Yes, it was damn loud.

Happy to hear that and feels like a four legged hybrid lion is arriving for FoC!

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby Singha » 27 Apr 2011 15:07

some kind of chankian low footprint UAV might also be doing night tests off HAL. saw a small slow tight turning object with wing lights roaming around near bellandur lake a couple weeks back.

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby MN Kumar » 27 Apr 2011 15:14

I saw this twin turbo prop plane few days back. Very similar to Saras in layout but with canards in the front similar to the Rustom-1 MALE UAV prototype.

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby Aditya_V » 27 Apr 2011 15:15

Singha wrote:some kind of chankian low footprint UAV might also be doing night tests off HAL. saw a small slow tight turning object with wing lights roaming around near bellandur lake a couple weeks back.


Is the Netra too small to be what you are describing?

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby Singha » 27 Apr 2011 15:21

too small. what I saw probably had a wingspan of around 10ft.

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby Aditya_V » 27 Apr 2011 16:18

Me apologise, stupid question

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby shiv » 27 Apr 2011 17:33

MN Kumar wrote:I saw this twin turbo prop plane few days back. Very similar to Saras in layout but with canards in the front similar to the Rustom-1 MALE UAV prototype.

That is the Piaggio Avanti which makes a loud rackety noise. I think it is marketed out of Hosur.
Image

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby Austin » 27 Apr 2011 18:01

^^ Thats a nice looking aircraft , its curvy top fuselage will probably ensure it has good cabin and top space

Added Later: TajAir owns and operates one
http://www.tajaironline.com/taj-fleet.html
Last edited by Austin on 27 Apr 2011 18:11, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby MN Kumar » 27 Apr 2011 18:07

Thats the plane Shivji.

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby shiv » 27 Apr 2011 19:13

MN Kumar wrote:Thats the plane Shivji.



That plane is flying about a lot nowadays. When I first heard it my heart skipped a beat and I searched the sky hoping to see the Saras back in the air. Sorry OT.

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Re: LCA News and Discussions

Postby ajay_hk » 27 Apr 2011 20:16

Tejas sensors checked out during night flying
The indigenous Light Combat Aircraft- Tejas, fitted with advanced sensors like Multi Mode Radar (MMR) Litening Pod (Day and Night imaging sensors), was checked out during night flying, Defence Research and Development Organisation said today.

These sensors when integrated with the on board weapon system, makes it a potent multi-role combat aircraft, a DRDO statement said. The first phase of the night evaluation in which six night flight sorties were conducted was held yesterday, it said.

"The preliminary results indicate that the integrated system performed very well, meeting the requirements of night operations. Flight trials were conducted by the National Flight Test Centre at ADA (Aeronautical Development Agency)", the statement said.
In addition, the avionics suit includes the state of the art Helmet Mounted Display System (HMDS) and Instrument Landing System (ILS), it said. To prove Tejas’s night operational capability, all these systems needed to be tested and evaluated following a detailed flight test programme during night flying in moon phase as well as dark phase, it said.

LSP-5 aircraft, which has the required cockpit lighting standard to support night flying, was used for these trials, the statement added. The night flying was started after a series of ground evaluations of the integrated system in static as well as taxi phase under different lighting conditions, it said.

With the conclusion of the first phase of night evaluations, the mood is upbeat in ‘Team Tejas’. Success of the current phase of trials augurs well for achieving night attack capability for Tejas in the near future, it said.


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