T. Suvarna Raju Chairman of the Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) speaking to CNBC-TV18 said that HAL can scale production of LCA-Tejas from 16 aircraft to 24 aircraft per annum if its Tier 1 and Tier 2 Suppliers of Wings, Front, and Rear fuselage can scale up their production line.

Raju said that orders for 83 Tejas MK-1A placed by Indian Air force can be wrapped up in just over 3 years if we can produce 24 aircraft per annum. Raju also confirmed that 5 more LCA-Tejas Serial Production aircraft will be delivered to Indian Air Force by end of this Fiscal year (FY17-18).

SP-10 and SP-11 LCA-Tejas aircraft can be seen already on the assembly rig and SP-7 and SP-8 can be seen in Final Assembly hangar and it is anticipated that it could complete its maiden first flights in coming weeks.

Raju also said that LCA-Tejas Trainer aircraft could also be marketed to Indian Air Force as a Trainer aircraft to train future fighter pilots. if accepted LCA-Tejas Trainers aircraft will not only be used to train pilots how to fly LCA-Tejas but also other aircraft in the air force fleet.

Known as Lead-in fighter training (LIFT) concept which uses Supersonic trainer jets to train new pilots for a smooth transaction from subsonic trainer jets to frontline fighter jets has been introduced in some advance airforce around the world.

IAF recently moved to Two-Stage Pilot training program after HAL developed HJT-36 Intermediate jet which was to replace aging Kiran MK2 aircraft in Stage-2, was rejected by Indian Air Force after it failed to clear Stall and Spin trials, which are considered absolutely necessary for trainer aircraft certifications.


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