HAL, the manufacturer of Tejas fighter aircraft, has given a contract of Rs 100 crore to National Aerospace Laboratory to supply equipment for the Light Combat Aircraft, NAL Director Jitendra Jadhav said today.
The technology developed by NAL, a laboratory under the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, was used in realising primary air-frame components of LCA – like fin, rudder, wing spars and fairings, centre fuselage and main landing gear components.
“Composite technology is one of the critical technologies that make the LCA a 4th generation fighter aircraft. The challenges were to develop the co-cured complex components indigenously during the time of technology denials and sanctions from other countries. Moreover, the autoclaves necessary for processing composite materials were also developed indigenously by CSIR-NAL,” NAL said.
Girish Sahni, director general of CSIR, said the usage of composites has led to an overall weight reduction of about 20 per cent in the air-frame.
“It is a matter of pride for the country that LCA’s percentage deployment of composites is one of the highest among contemporary aircraft of its class anywhere in the world. This order of Rs 100 crore plus value is a major achievement for CSIR,” Sahni said.
The Tejas LCA is a supersonic, single-seat, single-engine multirole light fighter aircraft. Built by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), it was inducted into the Indian Air Force in July 2016.
NAL is also in the process of indigenously manufacturing Saras, an aircraft for civil and military use.