First Light Combat Aircraft Tejas Mk1A Takes Maiden Flight

Tejas Mk1A is an upgraded version of the already-inducted Mark-1
  • Defensemirror.com bureau
  • 01:36 PM, March 28, 2024
  • 1333
First Light Combat Aircraft Tejas Mk1A Takes Maiden Flight
Tejas Mk1A's maiden flight on March 28, 2024 in Bengaluru, India @HAL

India's state-owned Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) has announced that the first Light Combat Aircraft Tejas Mk1A series soared into the skies from the HAL facility in Bengaluru.

The maiden flight lasted 18 minutes, the company said.

The Tejas Mk1A is an upgraded version of the already-inducted Mark-1, which has been serving the Indian Air Force (IAF). The Mk-1A boasts digital radar warning receivers, an AESA (active electronically scanned array) radar, advanced beyond-visual-range (BVR) air-to-air missiles, and external self-protection jammer pods, among other enhancements.

First Light Combat Aircraft Tejas Mk1A Takes Maiden Flight
Tejas Mk1A's maiden flight on March 28, 2024 in Bengaluru, India @HAL

HAL has already delivered 32 single-seat LCA fighters and two twin-seat trainers as part of the 40 Tejas Mk1 order valued at INR 8,802 crore. Now, with the recent flight, HAL gears up for the delivery of 83 Tejas Mk-1A aircraft between March 2024 and February 2028, in accordance with the INR 46,898 crore contract signed in 2021.

The Indian Air Force currently boasts two Tejas squadrons, namely the 'Flying Daggers' and 'Flying Bullets', with one squadron stationed in the southwestern sector facing Pakistan.

The defense acquisition council (DAC) has granted acceptance of necessity (AON) for an additional 97 Tejas Mk-1A aircraft. Once final clearance is obtained from the cabinet committee on security (CCS), the order for these aircraft is expected to follow suit.

First Light Combat Aircraft Tejas Mk1A Takes Maiden Flight
Tejas Mk1A fighter @HAL
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