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Design of India's naval fighter approaching preliminary completion

ADA is designing its new naval wing TEDBF for high-performance operations. The TEDBF is also being designed to integrate a range of domestically developed air-launched weapons systems. (Janes)

The preliminary design of India's Twin Engine Deck Based Fighter (TEDBF) programme is being prepared for submission to New Delhi in 2023 for approval.

This Preliminary Design Review (PDR) will provide the government and the Indian Navy with the first opportunity to assess the design of the aircraft.

P Thangavel, project director (Light Combat Aircraft Navy Mk 1) of the Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA), told Janes that β€œall data and documents pertaining to the design review are currently being prepared. We are aiming to submit the PDR in [the beginning] of the second quarter of 2023”.

Another ADA official told Janes that the prototype can be implemented four years after India's Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) approves the project. β€œWe are planning for a roll-out of the prototype in 2026 and a completion of flight trials by 2030βˆ’31,” the official said.

The Indian Navy had originally stated a requirement for the aircraft to replace the fleet's existing Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-29Ks by 2031.

According to Thangavel, the model of the TEDBF is undergoing wind tunnel testing. β€œWe expect the prototype to begin flight-testing in four to five years. Qualification trials will be extended. We estimate that operational trials can be completed five years later. The aircraft will require a substantial amount of testing βˆ’ over 1,000 flights,” he said.

According to ADA data, the TEDBF is being designed as a Mach 1.6-capable aircraft with a service ceiling of 60,000 ft. ADA officials told Janes

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