SOURCE: IDRW NEWS NETWORK
With the first aircraft rollout planned later this year, State-owned HAL and ADA have started groundwork to begin preparation for assembly of the first aircraft for which tenders have been allocated and the first aircraft on the assembly jig of the MkII should start by mid of April and should be completed by mid of December, just in time for the official rollout of the aircraft said officials familiar with the matter to idrw.org.
Most of the components and critical systems will start arriving by early March and some in later months but HAL will have enough to put the first aircraft on the assembly jig after the arrival of the mid and rear fuselage in April.
When asked if IAF is fully onboard the MkII program, idrw.org was informed that the Deputy Chief of Air Staff (DCAS), Air Marshal Narmdeshwar Tiwari has accepted the critical design review (CDR) report of the Tejas MkII and talks are with the IAF to fix a dedicated team for the program soon, as the first flight has been planned sometime later in 2023. HAL plans to put the first Tejas MkII aircraft for display at Aero India 2023 before it commences its first flight.
idrw.org was informed it will be too early to predict units that will be ordered by the IAF but HAL along with its supply line is expecting orders for a minimum of 100 units in the first contract as talks might be held to procure more MkII at a later stage with new high thrust 110kN engine, instead of the present 98kN Class engine. There is a sense of understanding with HAL that IAF instead of procuring MkII in large numbers might instead procure AMCA in higher numbers than earlier requirements as the first AMCA is planned to take the first flight in less than 2 years after the first flight of MkII.
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