India’s home-made light combat aircraft (LCA) Tejas has successfully fired the beyond-visual-range air-to-air missile (BVRAAM) Derby in radar-guided mode on Friday at Chandipur-on-sea. The aircraft took off from Kalaikunda base in the eastern state of West Bengal.
New Delhi – Tejas manufacturer Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) was assessing the Derby integration with aircraft systems onboard Tejas including the aircraft avionics, fire-control radar, launchers and missile weapon delivery system and to verify its performance. It is expected that all tasks for the final operational clearance will be achieved by the end of this year.
“The missile launch was performed in Lock ON after Launch mode for a BVR target in the look down mode and the target was destroyed. A safe separation was followed by missile guidance towards the radar-acquired target. The flawless launch was demonstrated with all onboard systems performing satisfactorily and the missile scored a direct hit on the target with a complete destruction of it,” India’s Ministry of Defense said.
HAL has so far handed over four Tejas aircraft to the Indian Air Force (IAF). The Tejas is, however, still not combat-ready. Its final phase of weapon trials, including the firing of BVR (beyond visual range) missiles, is under way. Moreover, the fighter is to get an AESA (active electronically scanned array) radar and advanced electronic warfare (EW) suite, and mid-air refueling capability, for the Mark-IA version that the IAF actually wants. Import content in LCA is 40% by value.
This story first appeared on Sputnik & is reposted here with permission.