28 July 2022
by Akhil Kadidal & Akshara Parakala
The flight trials of the Mk 1A are largely being conducted in secret as HAL said that the trials are part of the production project. The company said it is keen to adhere to delivery schedules for the Indian Air Force. (Akshara Parakala/Janes)
India has been conducting flight trials of the Mk 1A variant of its domestically developed light combat aircraft (LCA) Tejas.
Speaking to Janes , the manufacturer, Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), confirmed that the first Mk 1A entered flight-testing in April. According to a second HAL source, the aircraft under flight-testing is SP25, a Final Operational Clearance (FOC) block aircraft that was manufactured by HAL in 2020.
“This aircraft has been modified to the Mk 1A standard and will serve as the test platform for the production line of Mk 1As,” the HAL source said.
The flight trials have not been made public because HAL said the flights are part of production activities. “We are geared towards ensuring that the aircraft are delivered to the Indian Air Force (IAF) on time and on schedule by 2024,” the HAL source said.
08 June 2023
by Akhil Kadidal
Chinese and Russian bombers conducted a joint air patrol on 6 June. The Russian bombers subsequently landed at an unidentified airbase in China. (Japan MoD/Janes)
Russian and Chinese strategic bombers concluded a major joint patrol with fighter aircraft over the Sea of Japan (East Sea), the East China Sea, and the Philippine Sea.
According to information published by the Japan Ministry of Defense (MoD), several Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) fighter aircraft participated in the joint air patrol at various legs of the operation.
The joint patrol was split into two phases, according to the Japan MoD. Phase one of the patrol was conducted on 6 June. During this phase, two Xi'an Aircraft Company (XAC) H-6K bombers of the PLA rendezvoused with two Tupolev Tu-95MS bombers of the Russian Aerospace Forces (VKS) over the Sea of Japan (East Sea), the Japan MoD said.
However, South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) placed the number of aircraft in the joint patrol as four Chinese and four Russian aircraft.
08 June 2023
by Gareth Jennings
First showcased at the Farnborough International Airshow in 2016, the armed Black Hawk is now being considered by the Polish army. (Janes/Gareth Jennings)
Lockheed Martin expects Poland to order approximately 32 armed S-70 Black Hawk helicopters as part of a wider revamp of the country's rotary-winged capabilities.
Speaking at the PZL Mielec facility in southern Poland on 7 June, Marek Chojecki, sales and business development manager at Lockheed Martin's Polish subsidiary, said that discussions had been held with the Polish Ministry of National Defence (MND). He added that it is the company's expectation that an order for the armed variant of the S-70i/S-70M helicopter that is built at the site will be forthcoming (as noted by company officials, the S-70i and the S-70M are essentially identical platforms, with the difference being one of certification depending on the customer's requirements).
08 June 2023
by Yaakov Lappin
An F-16C from Israel's 101 Squadron at Paphos International Airport during Exercise ‘Blue Sun'. (Israeli Air Force)
The Israeli Air Force (IAF) used an exercise in Cyprus in May to simulate combat against Lebanese militant group Hizbullah, as well as operating F-16 fighter aircraft from an unfamiliar airfield.
Held with the Cypriot National Guard from 7 to 11 May, Exercise ‘Blue Sun' involved Super King Air intelligence-gathering aircraft from the IAF's 100 Squadron, F-16s from two different squadrons, and Apache attack helicopters deploying to Cyprus, as well as visits by C-130 transports carrying members of the elite Maglan unit, a part of the Israel Defense Forces' (IDF's) Commando Brigade.
First Lieutenant Y (name withheld), a 100 Squadron pilot who headed the exercise, told Janes that Cyprus's forested mountains provided unfamiliar terrain that served as a good backdrop for an exercise simulating conflict in a “northern arena” – a term the IDF uses to describe Lebanon.
India has been conducting flight trials of the Mk 1A variant of its domestically developed light com...
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