TEJAS (Syllabus: GS Paper 3 – Sci and Tech)

News-CRUX-10     1st December 2023        

Context: Recently, the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) approved the procurement of 97 Light Combat Aircraft Tejas Mk 1A and 156 Light Combat Helicopters from Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, along with other significant acquisitions totalling Rs 2.23 lakh crore.

Light Combat Aircraft Tejas

  • About: It is an indigenous supersonic aircraft used by the Indian military. 

oThe idea behind the LCA programme was to expand and develop India’s indigenous aerospace capabilities.

oSince the 1970s, the MiG 21 planes were the mainstay of the Indian Air Force. The primary goal of the LCA programme was to replace the ageing MiGs.

oThe secondary goal was the advancement of indigenous domestic aviation capabilities.

  • Origin: The Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) programme was started by the Government of India in 1984 when they established the Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA) to manage the LCA programme.

oIt replaced the ageing Mig 21 fighter planes.

oIt was in 2003 that the Light Combat Aircraft programme was named ‘Tejas’ (meaning radiance in Sanskrit) by the then PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee.

  • Designed and developed by: HAL (Hindustan Aeronautics Limited).

oIt is the second supersonic fighter jet that was developed by HAL (the first one being HAL HF-24 Marut).

  • Key Features: LCA Tejas is a single-engine multirole light combat aircraft.

oIt is the lightest and smallest multi-role supersonic fighter aircraft in its class.

oIt is designed to carry a range of air-to-air, air-to-surface, precision-guided, and standoff weaponry.

oTejas has a single-engine, compound Delta wing, and has a tailless design.