India building new fighter jet

• The Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA), India’s next indigenous fighter, is expected to make its first flight by 2032. Development work on the jet is underway.

• The AMCA will feature geometric stealth and will initially fly with two GE-414 engines. Once India develops its own engine, it can be replaced with that.

• There are two major ways of making a military platform stealthier. One is geometric stealth and other is material stealth. In geometric stealth, the shape of the aircraft is designed at such angles so as to deflect away maximum radar waves thereby minimizing its radar cross-section. In material stealth, radar-absorbing materials are used in making the aircraft which will absorb the radio waves thus reducing the radar footprint.

• The Indian Air Force has given land to the Defence Research and Development Organization to set up facilities for the project.

• The plan is to build on the capabilities and expertise developed during the development of the light combat aircraft (LCA) and produce a medium fifth generation fighter aircraft.

• At Aero India 2016, DRDO officials had stated that the basic design configuration has been frozen after wind tunnel testing and there are three critical technologies that need to be developed – stealth, thrust vectoring and supercruise.

• This is India’s only fifth-generation aircraft programme following the decision not to go ahead with the fifth-generation project with Russia.

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