LCA Tejas achieves another milestone towards FOC certification


New Delhi, With a successful firing of Derby air to air Beyond Visual Range (BVR) missile, the Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Tejas on Friday achieved another milestone towards final operational clearance (FOC), an official release said here on Saturday. Integration of Derby, a BVR class missile is one of the major objectives of Final Operational Clearance (FOC) of LCA Tejas. The missile launched from LCA Tejas was piloted by Wing Commander Siddharth Singh from the firing range off the Goa coast after exhaustive study of the missile separation characteristics and plume envelope. The aircraft was tracked by two other Tejas aircrafts in close formation to capture the firing event in the specially instrumented high speed cameras for detailed analysis and comparison with the simulation model for validation. The entire planning, practice sorties and final firing was carried out by Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA) and its National Flight Test Centre (NFTC) officials Commodore JA Maolankar and Group Captain A Kabadwal of Indian Air Force (IAF), Director General (Aeronautical Quality Assurance), Hindustan Aeronautical Limited and INS HANSA. Based on the successful integration and demonstration, Regional Centre for Military Airworthiness (RCMA), a unit of DRDO has cleared the series production aircraft of Squadron 45, to be equipped with Derby operational capability. LCA Tejas has successfully completed a series of captive flight trials to clear Derby for the full operational capability in the entire FOC envelope. In the past, Tejas has qualified for the armaments and missile release related trials.