In a major milestone in the development of a naval version of Tejas, the aircraft on Friday successfully carried out a successful “arrested landing”, a key performance demonstrating its ability to land onboard an aircraft carrier.
Military officials involved in the first-ever “arrested landing” of the light combat aircraft said the successful test has put India among a select group of nations having the capability to design a jet which can land on an aircraft carrier.
They said the test at a shore-based test facility in Goa demonstrated the aircraft’s ability to halt at a short distance using wires attached to a hook mounted on its fuselage after landing.
“Today is a golden letter day in the history of Indian naval aviation,” the Defence Ministry said in a statement.
The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) is involved in the development of the naval variant of Tejas along with Aeronautical Development Agency, Aircraft Research and Design Centre of Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd and CSIR among others.
“The test at the INS Hansa in Goa paved the way for the aircraft to undertake aircraft carrier landing demonstration onboard the Indian Naval aircraft carrier Vikramaditya,” the ministry said.
The naval version of the aircraft is in the development stage.
“This arrested landing heralds the arrival of true indigenous capability and displays the professional prowess of our scientific community in executing this landmark event,” the ministry said.
It said the test marked the start of a new era where multiple agencies have come together to achieve a common goal.
The Indian Air Force has already inducted a batch of Tejas aircraft.
Initially, the IAF had placed an order with the Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) for 40 Tejas aircraft.
Last year, the IAF issued the request for proposal (RFP) to HAL for the procurement of another batch of 83 Tejas at a cost of over Rs 50,000 crore.
“The participation of Certification Agency (CEMILAC), Quality Agency (DGAQA) and above all the men and women on the ground who serviced the aircraft and monitored it during strenuous trails is truly commendable,” the defence ministry said.