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India initiates fifth-generation AMCA fighter project

HAL has started assembly activities in support of its production of India's fifth-generation AMCA. (Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd)

Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) has launched manufacturing activities for India's fifth-generation Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA) project.

An HAL source told Janes that the company has started assembly activities for the fabrication of an AMCA ‘Test Box' at its Aircraft Research and Design Centre in Bangalore.

“The main requirement of ‘Test Box' is to withstand bird impact, combined with lower radar cross-section signature,” the source said.

These activities are being conducted in association with the Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA). HAL is involved in the structural design of the aircraft. It is also the design partner for a range of AMCA systems.

The HAL source added that for the assembly build a ‘jigless assembly' approach is being adopted “wherein the concept/philosophy of a ‘determinate assembly' methodology is [being] brought in during the component design and manufacturing processes”.

HAL said this methodology will pave the way for a reduction in assembly time and support in-process quality improvements during assembly. “The ‘jigless assembly' methodology has been initiated by positioning the components,” the HAL source said.

On 14 March, during a session of the Indian parliament, Ajay Bhatt, the minister of state for the Ministry of Defence (MoD), said that AMCA approvals are being sought from the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS).

“The process for obtaining Cabinet Committee on Security's approval for design and prototype development of Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft has been initiated,” Bhatt said.

HAL specified that the AMCA's preliminary design phase has been completed and the design frozen. However, the project's critical design review, which started in 2021, is continuing.

The ADA had not responded to questions from

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