On 10 September, the Light Combat Aircraft Tejas LSP8 of Hindustan Aeronautics (HAL, Hangar 1, Stand E10) successfully completed a Wet (actual) engagement by transferring 1,900kg of fuel from an IAF IL78 mid-air refuelling tanker.
The refuelling was carried out at an altitude of 20,000ft, the aircraft's speed was 270 knots and all the internal tanks and drop tanks were refuelled. Piloted by Wg Cdr Siddarth Singh of NFTC, this significant milestone was achieved with designers from HAL and ADA closely monitoring the system parameters from the ground station at Gwalior.
With this achievement, India joins the elite group of countries that have developed the air-to-air refuelling (AAR) system for the military class of aircraft, said R Madhavan, chairman and managing director of HAL.
A few days before, the successful dry docking took place of an aerial refuelling probe with a mother tanker.