The first naval prototype of the Light Combat Aircraft (LCA), designed to operate from the decks of aircraft carriers, was successfully tested at a facility in Goa, the defence ministry said here Sunday.
The LCA (Navy) Prototype 1 – or NP1 – the first indigenously designed and developed fourth-plus generation combat aircraft, was tested at the Ski-Jump facility of the Shore Based Test Facility at INS Hansa in Goa Saturday.
The LCA (Navy) is designed with stronger landing gears to absorb forces exerted by the ski jump ramp during take-off, to be airborne within 200 metres as against 1,000 metres required for normal runways.
Its special flight control law mode allows hands-free take-off as the aircraft leaps from the ramp and automatically puts the aircraft in an ascending trajectory, the statement said.
The LCA Navy programme team of the Aeronautical Development Agency was jubilant on achieving the successful, picture perfect launch that was the culmination of several years of design, flight test, simulation and management effort with contributions from a number of Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) laboratories.
The Shore Based Test Facility was created to replicate the aircraft carrier with a ski jump for take-off and arresting gear cable for arrested landing.