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SOURCE: IDRW NEWS NETWORK

One of the Tejas Limited Series Production (LSP) aircraft is presently receiving software updates to its Mission Computer (MC) and integration work being carried out on its Fire Control Radar (FCR) and soon aircraft will perform captive flight trials and missile separation trials with a dummy Astra Mk1 Beyond Visual range Air to Air Missile soon (BVRAAM) that state-owned Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) plans to test by end of this year, while it is working on, it is also working on the development of software patch that will enable both Mig-29UPG and Mig-29K fighter fleet, Astra BVRAAM capable soon.

Two Mig-29UPG and One Mig-29K fighter jet will be the second Russian-made fighter jets that will be integrated and tested with the locally made Astra Mk1 BVRAAM for which preparations have already started at HAL. Both Mig-29UPG and Mig-29K will have to go through the same levels of captive flight trials and missile separation trials before the missile can be tested and as per informed sources close to idrw.org, likely first firing of the missile from a Mig-29UPG will happen in 2022.

Upgraded Mig-29UPG fighter fleet has been chosen as the next in line after the LCA-Tejas fleet to get Astra Mk1 BVRAAM. HAL already has started upgrading the entire Sukhoi-30MKI fleet that will enable it to fire Astra Mk1 BVRAAM after it was successfully test-fired from Two Sukhoi-30MKI testbed aircraft that was assigned to carry out developmental and user trials of the missile system. Indian Air Force (IAF) already has received 50 Limited Production Astra Mk1 BVRAAM for its Sukhoi-30MKI fleet and last year placed fresh orders for 200 more missiles as the production line of the missile system gets steady and streamed line further. The Navy has placed orders for 48 Astra Mk1 BVRAAM for its carrier-based Mig-29K fleet.

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