Friday, August 18, 2023

Maiden flight of LCA Navy Trainer Prototype aircraft successfully conducted

Bengaluru: The maiden flight of the Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Naval Trainer Prototype 'NP5' was successfully conducted on Friday, Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA) said. The maiden flight was conducted from HAL airport here, and the aircraft was captained by Capt Amit Kawade (IN) with Wg Cdr Siddarth Singh (Retd) in the rear cockpit, ADA said in a release.

The aircraft took off at 14:20 hrs and was airborne for 57 minutes with all parameters normal, it said.

LCA Navy is designed and developed jointly by ADA and Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL).

Addition of NP5 aircraft to LCA Navy prototype fleet will help to accelerate flight testing activities which will provide designers vital inputs towards design and development of the Twin Engine Deck Based Fighter (TEDBF), the prestigious futuristic carrier aircraft programme of the country.

LCA Navy can also serve as an effective training platform for Indian Navy pilots for operations from the aircraft carriers.

The new prototype NP5 will soon undertake field and carrier operations from both INS Vikramaditya and INS Vikrant, ADA said, adding it will incorporate all improvements identified during exploitation of NP1 and NP2 is a production ready aircraft.

It will also incorporate the production standard airframe and rainwater compliance, maintainability improvements as well as futuristic system advancement.

During an interaction, Capt Amit Kawade expressed that the handling qualities were extremely satisfactory and all test points envisaged have been successfully completed.

The Director General-ADA, who witnessed the first flight while congratulating the team, said that today's flight of NP5 is a culmination of combined efforts of ADA, HAL, CEMILAC (Centre for Military Airworthiness and Certification), DGAQA (Directorate General of Aeronautical Quality Assurance) and several other Government and Private industries.

The first trainer prototype NP1 was flown on April 27, 2012 and the fighter prototype NP2 was flown on February 7, 2015.

18/08/2023 PTI/Times of India

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