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Texas Fighter Jet: First ‘worthy of combat’ Texas flies for 40 minutes | India News

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BENGALURU: The first Final Operational Clearance (FOC) variant of the Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Texas fighter jet, SP21, took to the skies for the first time on Tuesday (March 17), paving the way for 15 you hunt more in this class.

PSU Defense Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL), which is working on the deployment of the Texas FOC variants, targets 15 fighters by April 2021.

The SP21 was piloted by Air Commodore (retired) KA Muthanna on Tuesday. The plane took off at 12:24 pm and landed 40 minutes later.

“According to schedules, we should be able to deploy all 15 fighters in the FOC configuration by the end of 2020-21. Today’s flight was an important milestone as we were able to deploy the aircraft in approximately 12 months after receiving the CEMILAC SOP,” he said. a HAL official.

Tuesday’s flight is the first step in a series of things aligned to allow the Indian Air Force (IAF) to raise a second Texas squadron in Sulur, Tamil Nadu. The first Texas squadron, Flying Daggers, is already operating from there.

On February 20, 2019, the IAF finally agreed that locally developed and built Texas was combat ready, and received the ‘release to service’ certificate, meaning the fighter obtained final operational clearance (FOC) from DRDO, whose laboratory the Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA) designed the aircraft.

The aircraft, which was first conceived in 1983, is being produced by Defense PSU Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL). Although it was conceived in 1983, the project was only sanctioned in 1993.

The FOC and release to service occurred in close proximity to the final Texas DAL (Drawing Applicability Lists) that were delivered to HAL on December 31. This meant that HAL could continue production of the aircraft in FOC configuration.

Responding to a specific question about whether Tejas was ready for combat, then-IAF Chief of Air Marshal Birender Singh Dhanoa said:

“… As I told you, the proof of pudding is in eating. You saw how much the plane could fly and the number of departures it could generate during Gagan Shakti, which was in April 2018. And during Vayu Shakti, we showed you how accurately this plane could dispense weapons on the target. So that’s the test, “he said.

Additionally, HAL is currently awaiting formal orders for 83 Texas MK1 fighter jets, which will have improvements over the FOC variant. As reported by TOI, the cost of the program is likely to be Rs 39,000 crore.

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