AMCA - Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (HAL)

MirageBlue

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I did say 'reported'. In the video the DRDO director(?) is on the screen and is reported to be saying/have said that to be realistic, AMCA will be ready for production in 2033.

PS If you choose to say, when do you think the first production AMCA will be delivered to IAF?
That is just some random clip of Dr Samir Kamat. I want to see the original video where he said that or the interview/article, to get more context into what his statement was. That channel reports anything without doing any checks. For instance they're now claiming that India will go in for Su-57E Felon in a limited order. A couple of days ago they were claiming F-35 Block 4 will come.

If HAL/ADA manage to roll out the prototype in 3 years from now, then 2035 for AMCA Mk1 to enter production (most likely with HAL as lead partner) is not that far fetched.

Entering production in 2035 would mean 2038 for delivery of the first AMCA Mk1 with F-414 engines.

Private sector companies are waiting for orders to be placed before taking up partnership in the SPV, which basically means they're sitting out the entire development part, after which it makes no sense whatsoever to give them a big part of the production pie. No risk, no gains.
 
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MirageBlue

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My guesses

Cost of 36 x AMCA = $4 billion
Cost of 36 x KF-21 = $3 billion + all costs for an extra type (say $2 billion)
Cost of 36 x F-35 = $3 billion + all costs for an extra type (say $3 billion)

On those guessed numbers, the AMCA delay could cost $1 billion or more if IAF is forced to buy another type. Add another billion if India wants it modified to Indian requirements.

Yes, a stopgap may be needed but it is money that would have better been spent on AMCA, were it available. Worth remembering, too, that F-35 has sky high CPFH so lifetime cost would be far higher than AMCA.

My guess is that the extra costs incurred by AMCA delay could amount to half or more of the cost of developing a 110kN engine.
Just check out how much Germany is paying for 35 F-35s. USD 10.89 billion. Including weapons, which India will also need to buy since we have none in our stock that the F-35 uses.

Just to house the F-35s, hundreds of millions has been spent by Belgium and Germany too will need to spend quite a bit to upgrade their Buchel base infrastructure to house the F-35.
 

MirageBlue

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Some Iranians on discord were claiming that Indian along with Iran are looking to domestically manufacture and be part in dev of Su-75 . Dont know how true this is
Ignore.

There is not going to be any participation in external fighter programs when the AMCA is in development. Plus given the Ukraine- Russia war, there is no way that the GoI will risk sanctions by buying weaponry worth billions of USD from Russia.

Besides, what is the Su-75 bringing to the table for the IAF? the IAF has consistently maintained that it's looking at Tejas Mk1A, Tejas Mk2, MRFA and AMCA for it's fleet requirements.
 

Samej Jangir

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Not really.
As said previously, F/A18 is a derivative of F5, and SH a derivative of F/A18.
Sure some big improvements were introduce (FBW in F/A18, New air intakes for SH) but aerodynamically speaking there is clearly a strong link between them.
Outer design is definitely similar. But that is only 20% of the work. The internal's optimisation of space for fuel tanks, redundancies in case of damages (planes are designed to land even if it loses its tail or part of the wing), fitment of new sensors, increased size of air intake for bigger engines, alloy selection, deciding the exact thickness, curvature gradients of the body parts by identifying stress areas to optimise empty weight etc play a very big role. For example, having a plane made of thick sheet of metal would likely weigh ~0.5-1ton more than metal sheet that is optimised by reducing thickness in low stress areas

The SH project took ~10 years to perfect for this reason. For a 5th gen fighter, redesigning will be even more complex due to extremely high sophistication & micro-optimisations.
 

Samej Jangir

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I imagine that AMCA is being made to meet an IAF requirement. Part of that requirement is that it gets delivered at a certain time. If it looks like it will not be available to IAF when required, what is IAF supposed to do? Go without a 5G aircraft until AMCA eventually turns up or order something else?

IAF's job is to contribute to the defence of India. GOI's job is to provide IAF with the wherewithal to do its job. If the Indian MIC cannot do that (ironically aided and abetted by the GOI introducing avoidable delays) then it is no surprise if IAF asks for some other country to provide IAF with the wherewithal to do its job.
Even if 1 single AMCA can be made indigenously as per specifications without any critical imported part (importing minor parts like copper wires, natural resource etc are acceptable), then there is no real limit on the production capacity except on the order numbers placed. Any delays is either due to imported parts which India is trying to substitute, last minute designing problems needing rectification or order quantity related.
 

Samej Jangir

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That is just some random clip of Dr Samir Kamat. I want to see the original video where he said that or the interview/article, to get more context into what his statement was. That channel reports anything without doing any checks. For instance they're now claiming that India will go in for Su-57E Felon in a limited order. A couple of days ago they were claiming F-35 Block 4 will come.

If HAL/ADA manage to roll out the prototype in 3 years from now, then 2035 for AMCA Mk1 to enter production (most likely with HAL as lead partner) is not that far fetched.

Entering production in 2035 would mean 2038 for delivery of the first AMCA Mk1 with F-414 engines.

Private sector companies are waiting for orders to be placed before taking up partnership in the SPV, which basically means they're sitting out the entire development part, after which it makes no sense whatsoever to give them a big part of the production pie. No risk, no gains.
AMCA Mk2 is likely for production in 2034-35. Mk1 will be produced earlier with some downgraded sensors & imported engines. Mk2 will have 110kN engines and hence will take 3-4 years more time than Mk1. Nothing wrong in saying AMCA will be ready for production by 2033. Whether it is Mk1 or k2 will depend on the 110kN engine being developed in time
 

Spitfire9

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Ignore.

There is not going to be any participation in external fighter programs when the AMCA is in development. Plus given the Ukraine- Russia war, there is no way that the GoI will risk sanctions by buying weaponry worth billions of USD from Russia.

Besides, what is the Su-75 bringing to the table for the IAF? the IAF has consistently maintained that it's looking at Tejas Mk1A, Tejas Mk2, MRFA and AMCA for it's fleet requirements.
I don't see any point in India considering Su-75. As far as I know the design of Su-75 is fluid, with Sukhoi still conducting research into what design would sell in the international market. So far no real demand for the aircraft has been identified. Since it is a private venture to design a low cost 5G aircraft for export, Russia's pariah status for much of the world makes it a non-starter in my opinion. In addition, I have the impression that co-operating with Sukhoi on FGFA did not go well, so why go down that path again?

If India has the technology to develop the systems to go into AMCA, why not just stick to that? Which raises the question: can India develop AESA, EOTS, IRST, MAWS, sensor fusion etc to go into AMCA Mk1 and productionise the same in time for the fighter to go into production early next decade?
 

MirageBlue

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I don't see any point in India considering Su-75. As far as I know the design of Su-75 is fluid, with Sukhoi still conducting research into what design would sell in the international market. So far no real demand for the aircraft has been identified. Since it is a private venture to design a low cost 5G aircraft for export, Russia's pariah status for much of the world makes it a non-starter in my opinion. In addition, I have the impression that co-operating with Sukhoi on FGFA did not go well, so why go down that path again?

If India has the technology to develop the systems to go into AMCA, why not just stick to that? Which raises the question: can India develop AESA, EOTS, IRST, MAWS, sensor fusion etc to go into AMCA Mk1 and productionise the same in time for the fighter to go into production early next decade?
AESA, IRST and MAWS already have been developed indigenously. the Uttam AESA will see different variants, being scaled up or down depending on the size of the platform and electrical and cooling power available.

Su-30MKI upgrade is going to see all of these - an indigenous AESA based on GaN tech, IRST that will replace the Russian one and MAWS that has been in development and testing for quite some time. Similarly with Tejas Mk2 and TEDBF.

Sensor fusion is a requirement on the Tejas Mk2. Work is already underway to fuse the EW suite, AESA radar and IRST data to present a unified picture for the pilot.
 

Spitfire9

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AMCA Mk2 is likely for production in 2034-35. Mk1 will be produced earlier with some downgraded sensors & imported engines. Mk2 will have 110kN engines and hence will take 3-4 years more time than Mk1. Nothing wrong in saying AMCA will be ready for production by 2033. Whether it is Mk1 or k2 will depend on the 110kN engine being developed in time
The unknown to me is what 'ready for production' means. On reflection I think that since DRDO and ADA are responsible for designing AMCA, they cannot know when all will be arranged for production to start. HAL, given the job of building prototypes and testing them, can estimate how long that will take. Unless GOI negotiates and gives a production order in time for production facilities to be ready, poised to start operating the moment testing finishes, there has to be a delay between testing finishing and production starting.
 

Samej Jangir

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The unknown to me is what 'ready for production' means. On reflection I think that since DRDO and ADA are responsible for designing AMCA, they cannot know when all will be arranged for production to start. HAL, given the job of building prototypes and testing them, can estimate how long that will take. Unless GOI negotiates and gives a production order in time for production facilities to be ready, poised to start operating the moment testing finishes, there has to be a delay between testing finishing and production starting.
The idea that there is political or labour issues is incorrect unless the government is formed by foreign funded parties. If the government is by Indian parties without foreign hand, then this won't even be a problem.

If DRDO develops the technology, it will give ToT to manufacturing organisation and handhold for some time to resolve teething issues. So, it will be production ready immediately the tech is developed.

The current problems in LCA production is mainly because:
1) Several key tech which were in parallel development to design have not matured & faster production means more production of LCA with higher import % which will in turn cause import dependency in long term for spare parts
2) LCA is not preferred due to size being too small. It was conceived as a replacement of Mig21 as point defence plane but with increased Indian strength, India wants more offensive power & LCA is not suiting the needs. So, LCA is produced as a stop gap measure to get data, feedback, gain expertise & act as testbeds for better planes - MWF (LCA Mk2), TEDBF & AMCA.

I don't see any point in India considering Su-75. As far as I know the design of Su-75 is fluid, with Sukhoi still conducting research into what design would sell in the international market. So far no real demand for the aircraft has been identified. Since it is a private venture to design a low cost 5G aircraft for export, Russia's pariah status for much of the world makes it a non-starter in my opinion. In addition, I have the impression that co-operating with Sukhoi on FGFA did not go well, so why go down that path again?

If India has the technology to develop the systems to go into AMCA, why not just stick to that? Which raises the question: can India develop AESA, EOTS, IRST, MAWS, sensor fusion etc to go into AMCA Mk1 and productionise the same in time for the fighter to go into production early next decade?
India is already developing AMCA with design being nearly finalised. It makes no sense to go for another development of Su75.
As for sensors, India is already making serious progress in sensor development, most of which will be implemented in Super Sukhoi & LCA Mk1A program. Additional development like sensor fusion, more advanced tech etc will likely be developed for MWF, TEDBF & AMCA by 2030s
 

tomthounaojam

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Is there any chance by 2030 there might be a prototype of AMCA being rolled out, or am I just too optimistic? Thanks
 

Spitfire9

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The idea that there is political or labour issues is incorrect
Where AMCA delays are concerned I never talked of what you write above.

The idea that there is political or labour issues is incorrect unless the government is formed by foreign funded parties. If the government is by Indian parties without foreign hand, then this won't even be a problem.
You can attribute failure to foreign elements being involved but I think you are deluding yourself.

Structural shortcomings in Indian procurement, defective project management and the absence of accountability are what I see as the cause of projects such as Tejas/Tejas Mk2/MRFA/AMCA performing as they do.
 

Satish Sharma

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Where AMCA delays are concerned I never talked of what you write above.


You can attribute failure to foreign elements being involved but I think you are deluding yourself.

Structural shortcomings in Indian procurement, defective project management and the absence of accountability are what I see as the cause of projects such as Tejas/Tejas Mk2/MRFA/AMCA performing as they do.
You're denying the foreign hand wow.
There is are some issues indeed. But foreign lobby exists. Infact scientist of atomic commision isro have been executed many times in past. Everyone knows scientist nambi Narayan case. How cia infiltrated and jailed him which delayed indias many programs. You can ot tolerate others success. Usa can go to any extend to preserve its super pooper status. Be it war regime change anything. To protect dollar hegemony. You looters creater you're whole world on the loot of Asia.

Anyways
Army wants Apache despite having lch and despite so many failures of apaches in high altitudes. They won't ignore such issues in lch if hypothetically happens..atlast we are not as slave as Britain is the lieutenant of USA.
 

Samej Jangir

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Where AMCA delays are concerned I never talked of what you write above.


You can attribute failure to foreign elements being involved but I think you are deluding yourself.

Structural shortcomings in Indian procurement, defective project management and the absence of accountability are what I see as the cause of projects such as Tejas/Tejas Mk2/MRFA/AMCA performing as they do.
Firstly, foreign hand is real whether you agree or not. It is not by magic that Homi Bhabha was killed, Semiconductor foundry SCL burnt down, nuclear scientists killed etc as well as governmental refusal to sanction clearance for development.

As for structural shortcomings, these are all a result of political will or a lack thereof. If there is genuine intention to get things moving, everything will be cleared through direct oversight from the top. If PM or DM directly engages with the manufacturing unit, scientific staff, they will immediately realise the seriousness and bring things to order. So, that is never a real issue.
 

Spitfire9

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As for structural shortcomings, these are all a result of political will or a lack thereof. If there is genuine intention to get things moving, everything will be cleared through direct oversight from the top. If PM or DM directly engages with the manufacturing unit, scientific staff, they will immediately realise the seriousness and bring things to order. So, that is never a real issue.
What an astonishing view. It's a bit like saying that it's ok to have a system that stops things progressing because you can bypass the system and thereby get things to progress.
 

Azaad

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What an astonishing view. It's a bit like saying that it's ok to have a system that stops things progressing because you can bypass the system and thereby get things to progress.
India isn't for beginners & neither is Samej Jangir. It's because of people like him that Rudyard Kipling coined the phrase on why the east & west are different & the 2 shall never meet.

Further it's also coz of the likes of him the British Empire folded up in less than 2 centuries out here.

Do keep logging in for more gems.

You're welcome
 

Samej Jangir

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What an astonishing view. It's a bit like saying that it's ok to have a system that stops things progressing because you can bypass the system and thereby get things to progress.
No system progresses on its own. Everything needs to be controlled by good men to give good results. There is no magic wand which makes system work autonomously. This is universally applicable, although westerners have been brainwashed with full propaganda based media that somehow their system works better than others.
 

BON PLAN

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Outer design is definitely similar. But that is only 20% of the work. The internal's optimisation of space for fuel tanks, redundancies in case of damages (planes are designed to land even if it loses its tail or part of the wing), fitment of new sensors, increased size of air intake for bigger engines, alloy selection, deciding the exact thickness, curvature gradients of the body parts by identifying stress areas to optimise empty weight etc play a very big role. For example, having a plane made of thick sheet of metal would likely weigh ~0.5-1ton more than metal sheet that is optimised by reducing thickness in low stress areas

The SH project took ~10 years to perfect for this reason. For a 5th gen fighter, redesigning will be even more complex due to extremely high sophistication & micro-optimisations.
Internally, and about the materials and equipments it is indeed a new jet. But the aerodynamic formula is old, and if it was good for F/A18 (but I remembered that at the end of its developpment the US navy said it was short (already) on range and payload...) the 25% size improvement was not a so good idea.
They thought it can save time and cost, but at the end they had to made a lot of air tests to avoid the wings buffer and the aerodynamic overall project was average.
 

MirageBlue

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2) LCA is not preferred due to size being too small. It was conceived as a replacement of Mig21 as point defence plane but with increased Indian strength, India wants more offensive power & LCA is not suiting the needs. So, LCA is produced as a stop gap measure to get data, feedback, gain expertise & act as testbeds for better planes - MWF (LCA Mk2), TEDBF & AMCA.
That is no longer true.

If you've watched the Smita Prakash podcast with Air Marshal RKS Bhaduaria, during whose term as ACM, the LCA Mk1A order was placed, you'd see how the IAF views the LCA.

The IAF planned to halt Tejas Mk1 procurement at 40 units and then move to the Tejas Mk2. However due to there being no agreement on the Tejas Mk2 specification between DRDO, HAL and IAF, it kept dragging on. Then in order to fix that situation, it was agreed that the Tejas Mk1 would be upgraded with key updates (SDR, AESA, IFR probe, BVRAAMs and EW Suite) and after that IAF agreed to go in for 83 of the Mk1A.

He was unequivocal in his view on the Tejas- he called it the best fighter in the world in it's class. The IAF isn't going in for 97 more for a total of 180 Tejas Mk1A just to get data, feedback, gain expertise and act as testbeds for other airplanes.

It is very capable, safe and reliable, super economical to operate, has range and payload equivalent to or even greater than the Jaguar in the IAF. And it's built in India.

 

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