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SOURCE:  ABHOY ROY / FOR MY TAKE / IDRW.ORG

Aero India 2019 Came as big surprise to many and star attraction, of course, was Medium Weight Fighter (MWF) aka AF-Tejas Mk2 which now gets major upgrades to its design, features, and capabilities that LCA-Navy MK2 which was also showcased completely missed media attention even when the LCA-Navy Mk2 revealed major changes to the design over LCA-Navy Mk1 that it now can be called as a Clean Slate program which now has been, further optimized for aircraft carrier operations.

LCA-Navy Mk2 program is a Naval fighter jet which now comes with several improved features over Tech Demonstrator Navy-LCA Mk1 and major changes being no more Levcons, instead, it now comes with vortex flaps for reducing approach speed and the introduction of TailPlanes (Stabilators) as additional surfaces for improved control and performance.

LCA-Navy Mk2 will get a 2.26 mm plug in the fuselage so the total length will be 14.56 m instead of 13.20 m as seen in Navy-LCA Mk1 which improves mission performance and better maintainability which is pretty close to AF-Tejas Mk2 at 14.60 m. An increased wingspan of 8.9 m will allow optimized wing loading and now also comes with additional hard points for improved mission effectiveness.

Both LCA-Navy Mk2 and AF-Tejas Mk2 will be powered by a single GE 414 INS6 engines generating 99 kN class of Wet thrust but LCA-Navy Mk2 engine will get some special treatment to maintain optimal performance at harsh topical sea conditions of Indian Oceans while operating from Indian Aircraft carriers as agreed by GE.

LCA-Navy Mk2 will also get a redesigned landing gear and associated structure with increased internal fuel as critical driving factors in its design. LCA-Navy Mk2 will get 8 Hard-points along with lightening pod on Right Air intake and a GSh-23 Gun on the left Air intake. Availability of Dual Rack Pylons from Tejas Mk1A on wards will also allow additional weapons carrying capacity for Close Combat Missile (CCM) like ASRAAM.

Other features will be Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) Radar, Unified Electronic Warfare Suite, On-Board Oxygen Generation System, Smart cockpit, Fuel Dumping System, In-flight refueling probe, Redesigned lighter Arrestor Hook System. While IRST System will be featured on AF-Tejas Mk2, LCA-Navy Mk2 might not get one.

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