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LCA Tejas Navy makes arrested landing, clears a big hurdle before aircraft carrier test


PANAJI: In a major achievement towards developing an indigenous fighter for Indian Navy’s aircraft carriers, the Light Combat Aircraft Tejas Navy was on Friday successful in making a wire-arrested landing at Goa’s Shore-based Test Facility (SBTF) INS Hansa. After completing a series of such short and arrester landings, Tejas Navy will get operational clearance to execute the same on aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya.

As the LCA Tejas Navy came for landing, its tailhook was lowered which was caught by the arrester wire resulting in the fighter coming to a stop just a few metres after touchdown. The plane had first flown with a tailhook on July 23, 2018.

The Naval version of LCA Tejas was first flown in April 2012 and the DRDO and ADA are currently testing two planes for the Navy. Since a plane which operates from an aircraft carrier needs stronger landing gears than one taking off and landing on a runway on the ground, several modifications have to be incorporated for the same. Fighters taking off from an aircraft carrier need to get airborne in less than 200 metres as against almost a 1-kilometre long runway needed by jets taking off from a ground-based runway.

INS Vikramaditya has a ramp which allows results in the fighter taking off from its runway jumping up. LCA Tejas Navy also has hands-free take-off and the SBTF has been constructed as a replica of an aircraft carrier to train Navy pilots.

News agency ANI also shared of video of LCA Tejas making a wire-arrested landing at Goa’s Shore-based Test Facility (SBTF) INS Hansa.

#WATCH DRDO and the Aeronautical Development Agency successfully executed the first ever arrested landing of LCA Tejas (Navy) at the shore based test facility in Goa. This is a step towards the aircraft getting operational on aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya. (video:DRDO)

— ANI (@ANI) September 13, 2019

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The aircraft carrier is armed with the Russian Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-29K fighters and the same will also operate from the Indigenous Aircraft Carrier Vikrant which is under construction. The Navy is also looking at buying 57 fighters to operate from its aircraft carriers.

However, in December 2016, Indian Navy Chief Admiral Sunil Lanba had pointed out that the naval version of LCA Tejas was “too heavy” for an aircraft carrier. “As far as the carrier-based aircraft is concerned, we need it in a timeline of the induction of the aircraft carrier. We have the MiG-29K, which operates from Vikramaditya and will operate from (indigenous aircraft carrier) IAC Vikrant. We were also hoping to operate the LCA (Light Combat Aircraft-Tejas) from these two aircraft carriers. Unfortunately, the LCA is not being able to meet the carrier’s required capability. That is why we need an alternative aircraft to operate from these two aircraft carriers,” Lanba had said.

Source: Zee News