LCA TEJAS MK1 & MK1A: News and Discussion

Bleh

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India should get 400-500 Tejas spread out over all these airbases in the western front
Bdw iaf wants mwf in larger number...123 Tejas good enough for point defence role....
Agreed, 400-500 would be too much, right now atleast. This is not Mig-21... LCA/MWF leans heavily on QualityoverQuality while being reasonably priced being mid-tier jets.

The targeted 123 LCA & 200 MWF is a decent plan. Maybe a squadron or 2, more Mark1A to keep assembly lines hot till 2027-28. Enough.
 

patriots

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Agreed, 400-500 would be too much, right now atleast. This is not Mig-21... LCA/MWF leans heavily on QualityoverQuality while being reasonably priced being mid-tier jets.

The targeted 123 LCA & 200 MWF is a decent plan. Max a squadron or 2, more Mark1A to keep assembly lines hot to 2027-8.
Bdw I believe long range and medium range sam systems will relax the work load of interceptor fighter s....so lesser number of point defence fighter s
Bdw we had a lot of mig21 because it was cheap....and no way Tejas is cheap.....
Bdw 123+ Tejas is good enough to defend India
 

johnq

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Agreed, 400-500 would be too much, right now atleast. This is not Mig-21... LCA/MWF leans heavily on QualityoverQuality while being reasonably priced being mid-tier jets.

The targeted 123 LCA & 200 MWF is a decent plan. Maybe a squadron or 2, more Mark1A to keep assembly lines hot till 2027-28. Enough.
323 would be sufficient for western front, but I added the extra number of 100-150 keeping in mind that each of the airfields (facing China) at high altitude in Ladakh and Arunachal would require a squadron of Tejas due to low wing loading, hence ability to operate in the thinner air of these airfields. Even the SU-30MKI can't take off with a decent payload from these high altitude airfields; while Tejas can, mainly due to significantly lower wing loading. Plus you need large numbers of an aircraft that is easy to maintain and can quickly get to altitude in air defence role to shoot down large numbers of ingressing Chinese cruise missiles and fighters.
India will also need additional fighters to defend Andaman, Nicobar and other islands against China.
 

FalconSlayers

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See our SAM Systems will make Pakistani aircraft stay in their limits as our SAM systems are not only numerically superior but also quality wise superior, our Homemade SAMs are among the world’s best SAM systems. And S-400 of course is Baap of all SAMs.
 

HariPrasad-1

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Introduction

The Gripen has American Engine, IRST and AESA radar made by an Italian-British company, missile launch rails made by an American company, Cockpit made by an Israeli company, many other foreign components and foreign weapons. Still the Gripen is called an Indegeneous Weapon nobody has any problem in buying Gripen. Because it is Gripen It is not HAL Tejas. In HAL Tejas apart from engine and Radar there is rarely anything that has been a foreign product. Still people say Tejas not indigenous.

Picture


Saab has been making aircrafts since the 1930s. They take 70 years to produce an aircraft like Gripen NG, we only take 30 years to develop an aircraft like Tejas. There is lot of problems faced from the start of the project and the western sanctions also affect the program still we managed to develop a world class fighter. 65% of Tejas is ingenuously developed. Tejas MK 2 will incorporate 90% indigenous tech and surely it can outperform Gripen NG in many areas. Gripen considered as one of the best multi role fighter in the world. Many defense analysts place Gripen inside the top 10 table. We must be proud of by our achievements and must support our great scientists.

The comparison between Tejas and Gripen is in the following 4 criteria’s
  • Stealth
  • Maneuverability
  • Avionics
  • Weapons
  • Engine and Power

READ THE COMPLETE ANALYSIS OF TEJAS

Stealth

Both Tejas and Gripen incorporate a certain amount of stealth. Gripen uses 30% composites & Tejas uses 45 % composites. 90% of the surface of Tejas is made of composites. The RCS of Tejas not publically available. Tejas MK2 will contain 70% of composites surely MK2 will have a considerable advantage in stealth. Both Gripen and Tejas using Radar Absorbent materials and coating for reducing RCS.

RCS of Tejas = 0.5 m2
RCS of Gripen = 0.9 m2
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Maneuverability

So far as aerodynamics is concern, Gripen is an excellently designed plane which gives it a very good speed and long range. LCA Mk1 was considered to be a bit draggy but a lots of studies have been made to improve its aerodynamics is concern. Making LCA Mk2 1m longer is a part of Aerodynamic improvement process for better compliance of Area rule. There are some other aerodynamics changes which are coming in LCA Mk2. Study says that it will reduce drag by 8% and improve trans sonic acceleration by 20%.. So these aerodynamic changes should make LCA Mk2 a plane with very good aerodynamic characteristic.

For good turning performance wing loading should be low and thrust to weight ratio (TWR) should be high. Tejas has an advantage in both TWR and wing loading. The thrust-to-weight ratio of a combat aircraft is a good indicator of the maneuverability of the aircraft. So Tejas should have better turn rates than Gripen .Tejas shall be at a big advantage because of its light empty weight and should maneuver fast and probably can beat Gripen in close combat. Its small airframe makes it difficult for the enemy pilot to spot in a close combat. Tejas have an advantage of low wing loading also which should give it an edge at high altitude fighting. Some websites claims Gripen has superior Sustained turn Rate than any other aircraft anyway we are not considering it as a credible source. However airplane design always a compromise & both wing loading & TWR can be “adjusted” within some margins to enhance turning performance. We don’t know anything more about the specifications of Gripen to evaluate its maneuverability. Even though Tejas has better turn rates we consider both Tejas and Gripen almost equally maneuverable.

TWR Tejas = 1.07
TWR Gripen = 0.97
Wing loading Tejas = 247kg/m2
Wing loading Tejas = 283kg/m2
Picture


Avionics

Gripen got very good radar, a gallium Nitride based radar. LCA Mk2 is also all set to get top of the class AESA radar till Uttam is ready with 150 KM range. Israel has offered ELTA 2052. Recently Thales has flight-tested active array radar built specifically for Tejas. The radar is based on the company’s successful RBE2 radar installed on Rafale fighter jets. With the latest Thales AESA radar MK1A can kick out any of its adversaries. But still lags behind Gripens GaN Raven radar.

Gripen also going to get a world class IRST in the form of Selex skyward G and tejas doesn’t have any IRST till now. With the help of GaN radar and skyward G IRST gripen can detect stealthy fifth generation fighter aircraft's at long distances.

In Electronic Warfare Gripen is the first aircraft which uses electronic warfare system based on gallium nitride technology, India and Israel are making EW for Tejas and has designed MAYAVI Ew suite for Tejas and work is on for better EW. India has got spectra configured for Indian requirement. If spectra technologies goes in LCA MK2 by the way of buy back clause, it will be superior to Gripen. If not, Indo-Israeli EW will catch up with that of gripen .

So far sensor fusion is concern; Gripen is a top class plane. India is also working on sensor fusion but how much effective that will be is not known. Here is an area where I see gripen is significantly out performing Tejas in current scenario. Gripens sensor fusion is only inferior to F35 , and nobody knows how good will be India’s own sensor fusion. In avionics Gripen is atleast a generation ahead than Tejas Mk1A. May be MK2 can catch up with Gripen NG.
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Weapons

Both Tejas & Gripen have very good targeting pod and weapons . India shall use Python, derby and Russian missiles along with Astra. Gripen uses AIM Series and Meteor missile. Meteor is a top class missile but new Israel claims I Derby can provide 80% of meteor performance. Astra 2 the desi meteor is under development can also be include in Tejas Mk2 weaponry. Both planes are neck to neck in A to A missiles but If Meteor is used, Gripen will have a superior edge. Both will have gun according to their requirement and both can use guided bombs. India has just tested SAAW bomb which will give LCA MK2 an edge in anti airfield strike capability.
Picture


Engine and Power

Both Tejas and Gripen deriving the power from same engine GE 414 with a Dry thrust of 62 KN and 98 KN in afterburner. However India is also working on indigenous kaveri engine with the help of Snecma France. New Kaveri engine is supposed to have same power as GE 414. LCA Mk1A has 13.2 M long which is 2 meter short in length of Gripen. Both planes have same g limits. LCA mk1As service ceiling is 16000 m which is higher than the 15240m of Gripen . This is because of low wing loading and will give protection to LCA against many short range and shoulder fire missiles and SAMs. MK2 may have even better service ceiling which will increase the advantage of MK2 over Gripen NG.

Gripen has better speed than Tejas which does not make a big difference. But the super cruising ability of Gripen gives it an advantage of Tejas Mk1A, but we can incorporate super cruise ability in Tejas MK2. However, supercruising uses more fuel to travel the same distance than at subsonic speeds but uses less fuel than afterburner.
Gripens Higher cruise speed allows pilot to surprise the enemy by approaching him from the rear, zone of poorest detection, and to avoid getting surprised by a slower-cruising opponent. It also allows the fighter to choose a time and place of engagement.

In the beyond visual range combat, super cruise capability increases range of the missile shot, and reduces the effective range of adversary’s missiles. If pilot decides to pursue a merge or a visual-range attack pass, its excess kinetic energy again allows it to dictate terms of the engagement. It can also offset a possible situational awareness disadvantage – knowing where the enemy is is of little use if you can’t engage him.

Super cruise is an area where MK1A lag behind Gripen.

Max Speed Of Tejas – mach 1.8
Max Speed Of Gripen – mach 2

LCA MK1A has 500 m take off distance (some sources says it is 700m). Gripen NG has a short take off distance of 400m which favors Gripen and it will reduce at least 15% in Mk2 so mk2 will have equal short take off distance.[Figures may not be accurate ].

Speed at sea level is also against Tejas compared to Gripen, Gripen got 1400 Km/H at sea level Tejas got 1300 Km/H. We believe things will change in Tejas Mk2 with better aerodynamic features Mk2 can catch up with Gripen .

The maximum takeoff weight (MTOW) of an aircraft is the maximum weight at which the pilot is allowed to attempt to take off, due to structural or other limits. MTOW is the heaviest weight at which the aircraft has been shown to meet all the airworthiness requirements applicable to it. Gripen has a MTOW of 16500 Kg Ideally it should be 2.5 times the dry thrust which comes around 15.62 tons but let us assume that it is 16.5 tons as stated in specification. LCA Mk2 uses the same engine so it should have an ability of 16.5 tons MTOW but let us apply that 2.5 factor rule. LCA Mk2 should carry atleast 15.62 MTOW. Now Gripen with 8 ton weight +3.4 ton fuel is left with 5.1 ton payload on plane. On the other hand LCA MK2 with 6.2 ton empty weight and similar fuel of 3.4 ton should left Tejas with 5.7 ton weight which compares favorably to Gripen.

Fuel fraction or propellant fraction, is the weight of the fuel or propellant divided by the gross take-off weight of the craft (including propellant). Fuel fraction of Tejas & gripen is almost similar. So far as range is concern, Tejas should have higher range as both planes are using same engine but Tejas being significantly lighter should have a longer range. But gripen has a considerable advantage in range. An aircraft with more and heavier load (Gripen) should have a smaller radius of action than the same one with less and lighter load (Tejas), due to higher fuel consumption at heavier weights.

Combat Radius of Tejas = 400 Km
Combat Radius of Gripen = 800Km

Why Tejas has less combat radius than Gripen even though both uses similar engines, this is a mystery.

Possible Reasons of Less Combat radius
  • There is one possibility is that, Gripen has super cruise capability. That is Gripen shaped in such a way that it has the lowest drag as possible to make gripen super cruising so gripen can travel further. Increased drag of Tejas compared to gripen may be the one reason behind tejas less range.
  • Range is a function of ground speed. But range is directly affected by wind. An extreme example occurs when the relative velocity of an airplane through the air is 100km/h and there is a head wind of 100km/h. the ground speed is zero the air plane just hover over the same location & the range is zero. Clearly range depends upon the wind. The thing is Tejas wing loading is smaller than Gripen , which is better for maneuvering. But smaller wing loading and relaxed static stability of Tejas may cause increased gust response, to stabilize the flight aircraft need to use more energy results in increased fuel consumption.
  • The most suitable explanation for this paradox is Tejas air intake, the air intake is not good enough to tap the full potential of GE414 Engine. Current air intake is designed for indigenous Kaveri engine & is not 100% suitable for GE 414. And we believe this is the primary reason behind Tejas less combat radius. Auxiliary air intakes are provided for Tejas but this may not be able to help in all the flight paths. Hopefully the problem can solve in Tejas mk2.
Picture


Conclusion

Both planes are very good having their edge over others in different area. However, Tejas with its small size and very high T/W ratio offers many advantages as a platform. Gripen has significant advantage over Tejas in Avionics and sensor fusion and have slight advantage in weapons its almost similar in all other criteria’s. Tejas MK2 with better Radar, Smart Skin, and Internal Unified Electronic Warfare (Under development) can catch up with Gripen NG. Overall Gripen is the only 4th generation single engine aircraft which has a significant advantage over Tejas.



Copy Pasted from my article I wrote a long time ago.

Here is the link.


 

Bleh

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...I added the extra number of 100-150 keeping in mind that each of the airfields (facing China) at high altitude in Ladakh
Except that while area north of Chandigarh is shared by eastern & western theatres.

Northeast has flat plaIns to launch Su-30 (later AMCA) from.
...And S-400 of course is Baap of all SAMs.
The way S-300 is being penetrated regularly by Israelis, don't get your expectations too high... it's range may be big on paper though but still unreliable performing Rusky guidance tech.
 
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Killbot

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Both are needed, and the budget simply has to be expanded to fit a lot of new hardware purchases - 2.5 Front threat is in full motion now and the ally in the White House is quite possibly gone.

Mk1A's in big numbers could handle most of the PAF, and along w/ LCH's could possibly take care of a lot of bombing and CAS missions; freeing up better fighter platforms to handle China from the get-go.

An expanded LCA Mk1A order and follow on Rafale order need to be placed soon.
I think 83 Mk.1A and then MWF will be good enough...
 

johnq

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Except that while area north of Chandigarh is shared by eastern & western theatres.

Northeast has flat plaIns to launch Su-30 (later AMCA) from.


The way S-300 is being penetrated regularly by Israelis, don't get your expectations too high... it's range may be though but still Rusky tech.
AMCA is a long way away, at least 2 decades, but I do have hopes for MWF, although I still wish for a 2 engine MWF for both air force and navy, eventually powered by Indian engines.
 

Bleh

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AMCA is a long way away, at least 2 decades, but I do have hopes for MWF, although I still wish for a 2 engine MWF for both air force and navy, eventually powered by Indian engines.
Not gonna go into the fallacy of that 1st statement, but TEDBF has been targetted for 1st flight in 2026, 1 year after AMCA... Expecting some sort of design reveal in Aero India 2021.
 

patriots

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Except that while area north of Chandigarh is shared by eastern & western theatres.

Northeast has flat plaIns to launch Su-30 (later AMCA) from.


The way S-300 is being penetrated regularly by Israelis, don't get your expectations too high... it's range may be big on paper though but still unreliable performing Rusky guidance tech.
Bdw we both have Hadoop drone and s400....so we will definitely know about the cons of s400
 

Killbot

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Not gonna go into the fallacy of that 1st statement, but TEDBF has been targetted for 1st flight in 2026, 1 year after AMCA... Expecting some sort of design reveal in Aero India 2021.
Is the 2025 timeline realistic, though? It was initially scheduled for 2028, which seemed doable...
 

Lancer

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I think 83 Mk.1A and then MWF will be good enough...
Tedbf model will be showcased in aero india.......will know in detail
But realistically; how soon can we have MWF in significant numbers? The whole key is to bulk up Squadron Strength ASAP.

Also, MWF is the Mk2 with a stronger engine, correct? So does it seem likely that IN will be able to make ORCA program succeed by itself (since IAF pulled out), will the IAF definitely go for some if it works out, and how many would they go for if they get a Rafale follow on order for 36-44?
 

patriots

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But realistically; how soon can we have MWF in significant numbers? The whole key is to bulk up Squadron Strength ASAP.

Also, MWF is the Mk2 with a stronger engine, correct? So does it seem likely that IN will be able to make ORCA program succeed by itself (since IAF pulled out), will the IAF definitely go for some if it works out, and how many would they go for if they get a Rafale follow on order for 36-44?
Bdw I believe iaf should stick to amca....and wait for tedbfs success...then they can ask Ada for orca as a low cost fighter than amca
Amca can't be produced and operated in numbers
Realistic time line for mwf is 2030 (production)

And mwf(2035) production
 

Bleh

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Is the 2025 timeline realistic, though? It was initially scheduled for 2028, which seemed doable...
The conservative 2026 & 2028 were officially readjusted to 2023 & 2025 recently for MWF & AMCA respectively, that means they made good time. Platform design is frozen for one, final touches on the other. 1st flight should follow once prototypes are built.

But full scale induction is another thing as some new tech & subsystems need to be operationalised.
 

johnq

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Not gonna go into the fallacy of that 1st statement, but TEDBF has been targetted for 1st flight in 2026, 1 year after AMCA... Expecting some sort of design reveal in Aero India 2021.
When do you think AMCA will be operational? From what I've seen with the US F-35 experience, making a true stealth aircraft comes with a lot of developmental headaches.

Also, wouldn't it be better to just make one dual-engined MWF fighter for both air force and navy (with heavier undercarriage for naval version)? Aircraft engines fail more when operating from the Himalayas, and that seems to be where the next war will happen.
 

Bleh

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When do you think AMCA will be operational? From what I've seen with the US F-35 experience, making a true stealth aircraft comes with a lot of developmental headaches.

Also, wouldn't it be better to just make one dual-engined MWF fighter for both air force and navy (with heavier undercarriage for naval version)? Aircraft engines fail more when operating from the Himalayas, and that seems to be where the next war will happen.
We've split AMCA into Mark1 & 2 now.
The 5thgen-minus-supercruise-&-TVC F414 powered low observable Mark1 is to achieve operational clearance by 2030-32, if it flies in 2025... But the fully 5.5th gen, 110kN engined with stealthy nozzles will be post-2035.

The dual-engined MWF is TEDBF (although it might take after NLCA Mark2)...
IMG_20201202_140503.png

But IAF is interested in only its two AMCA versions.
 
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Narasimh

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Bdw I believe long range and medium range sam systems will relax the work load of interceptor fighter s....so lesser number of point defence fighter s
Bdw we had a lot of mig21 because it was cheap....and no way Tejas is cheap.....
Bdw 123+ Tejas is good enough to defend India
For mountains I think SAMs will not be very effective, there will be a need for interceptors... I think with better AWACS coverage and good situational awareness we can have the force multiplier affect.
 

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