Bahrain, Jan 20: After 3061 flights and 1954 hours of cumulative flying, India’s very own Light Combat Aircraft Tejas is all set to make its debut at the Bahrain International Air Show starting at the Sakhir air base on Thursday.
The two aircraft, among the earliest to arrive in Bahrain, have done nine practice sorties and will be displaying their flying skills and the capability of the aircraft on Thursday afternoon after the show opens in the morning, the Programme Director of Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA) — developers of the LCA — CD Balaji told BharatShakti in Bahrain on Wednesday evening.
“The aircraft has already achieved 8G during the practice runs and is all set to showcase its capabilities to the world,” Balaji said. “Coming to this airshow has allowed out pilots to fine tune their skills and push the flight envelope further than ever before,” he added.
Some of the rough edges that would be present in the aircraft, would be noted and rectified as the LCA return to their base in Bangalore after the show but for now the two pilots–commodore Jaideep Maolankar and Group Capt Madhav Rangachari– are all set to create historyon Thursday. The two have practiced five different manoeuvres and with the LCA now able to achieve a 24 degree angle of attack, it would be a treat to watch for the spectators at the air show over the next three days.
In all likelihood External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj is likely to visit the air show and witness the LCA’s flying display on Saturday, although there is no official word on her programme yet.