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    Originally posted by Teer View Post
    Its always useful to look at the antecedents of the sources and the actual details. Bhojwani is a retired gent who reveres the Mirage 2000 in Indian service, nothing comes close. Not for him the early Russian MiGs with their not so sophisticated fit and finish and rough and ready design which he attributes to HAL. His last article was a hosanna to the Mirage 2000 and saying the Su-30Ks weren't as good.

    In the article, he even admits he doesnt know about the LCA yet the author included his comments with the usual rubbish ( If HAL has made Tejas more maintenance-friendly than its predecessor products,then my stated opinion would need to undergo modification," Bhojwani said. ). LCAs predecessor products from HAL? MiG-21, 27 and Jaguar. Jaguar production QA/QC was enough to ship spares to Oman and also build wings for the Do-228. MiG-21, 27 were from a far different era and the tooling and production quality likewise. They were never meant to emulate the Mirage 2000. Worth noting though the rough and ready MiGs did more than their share in war in the plains.

    All that stuff about line engineers etc is similar speculation based on the TDs which were reengineered for the SP. The LCA is probably the most automated aircraft in terms of BITE in the IAF.
    Add to that the comment on how one canopy doesn't another airplane..or panels that need reworking to fit another..that would have happened in the older days, with the hand drawings been used to build parts. Not in today's day and age where digital models are used for design and manufacturing, even at HAL. A lot of bias and prejudice that some of the older ex-IAF folks still retain thanks in part to their experiences back in the days with HAL.

    Comment


      Maintenance with early aircraft was bound to be problematic given that the design hadn't been frozen yet. Different rules apply when the program shifts to production. Excerpt from a 2013 article by ^ Ajai Shukla -


      Over the years, excellent designs like the Arjun tank have failed the transition from design into product. This is because India's archaic defence production policies make the Defence R&D Organisation (DRDO) responsible for designing equipment, with production responsibility then passing onto a network of eight defence public sector undertakings (DPSUs) and 39 ordnance factories (OFs) with long reputations for sloppy production. Having played little role in design, the manufacturing agencies struggle to produce the system.

      The Tejas could be a game-changer. Firstly, HAL has played a major role both in designing the Tejas and in building prototypes for the flight-test programme. Secondly, HAL has brought a radically new approach to Tejas production, adopting global aerospace manufacturing standards and an unprecedented approach to quality control.

      Walking around the Tejas assembly line, Sridharan explains that the sixteen Tejas prototypes HAL has built are each different from the other. As the Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA) incrementally refined and improved the fighter, each new prototype incorporated improvements and additions. The most recent prototype has a pressure refuelling system that lets the Tejas be topped up Formula One style, in just 8 minutes and then flown back into combat.

      "As a result of all these changes, a panel from one Tejas would not fit another. Now we will implement absolute standardisation, with identical components, assemblies and panels," explains Sridharan.

      This is being done with laser scanners that ensure that a number of key points (called "locators") on each aircraft being built is exactly where it should be. By measuring with the laser, it is ensured that the locator is within 80 microns, i.e. about one-tenth of a millimetre, of where it should be. These are international standards, used by companies like Boeing.

      Comment


        Originally posted by Vnomad View Post
        Maintenance with early aircraft was bound to be problematic given that the design hadn't been frozen yet. Different rules apply when the program shifts to production. Excerpt from a 2013 article by ^ Ajai Shukla -


        Over the years, excellent designs like the Arjun tank have failed the transition from design into product. This is because India's archaic defence production policies make the Defence R&D Organisation (DRDO) responsible for designing equipment, with production responsibility then passing onto a network of eight defence public sector undertakings (DPSUs) and 39 ordnance factories (OFs) with long reputations for sloppy production. Having played little role in design, the manufacturing agencies struggle to produce the system.

        The Tejas could be a game-changer. Firstly, HAL has played a major role both in designing the Tejas and in building prototypes for the flight-test programme. Secondly, HAL has brought a radically new approach to Tejas production, adopting global aerospace manufacturing standards and an unprecedented approach to quality control.

        Walking around the Tejas assembly line, Sridharan explains that the sixteen Tejas prototypes HAL has built are each different from the other. As the Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA) incrementally refined and improved the fighter, each new prototype incorporated improvements and additions. The most recent prototype has a pressure refuelling system that lets the Tejas be topped up Formula One style, in just 8 minutes and then flown back into combat.

        "As a result of all these changes, a panel from one Tejas would not fit another. Now we will implement absolute standardisation, with identical components, assemblies and panels," explains Sridharan.

        This is being done with laser scanners that ensure that a number of key points (called "locators") on each aircraft being built is exactly where it should be. By measuring with the laser, it is ensured that the locator is within 80 microns, i.e. about one-tenth of a millimetre, of where it should be. These are international standards, used by companies like Boeing.
        Yes, correct which is why I said "All that stuff about line engineers etc is similar speculation based on the TDs which were reengineered for the SP."

        Basically the gent in question giving the interview has taken the Tech demos and protos (TD/PV/LSP) as equivalent to the standardized SP variants.

        A huge issue with many of the line IAF folks not the TP is that they always got mostly finished products or ones late in the development cycle. They don't have an idea of the complex test and development process or the investment, time, effort and resources required for developing a combat aircraft.

        Every minor issue or generally logical thing with the LCA to them, is evidence of some huge challenge since most have little interest in the process side of development or manufacturing.

        Many whimsical comments ensue. Those then go to a press which is 10x more illiterate and yet is reporting on defense topics. Only a handful of press guys even make the effort to get details and cross check them.

        Comment


          Maybe I've missed it ... but what are these new modifications on the tails ??
          Attached Files
          ...

          He was my North, my South, my East and West,
          My working week and my Sunday rest,
          My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song;
          I thought that love would last forever; I was wrong.

          The stars are not wanted now; put out every one:
          Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun;
          Pour away the ocean and sweep up the woods:
          For nothing now can ever come to any good.
          -------------------------------------------------
          W.H.Auden (1945)

          Comment


            Originally posted by Deino View Post
            Maybe I've missed it ... but what are these new modifications on the tails ??
            which ones Deino? the intake at the base of the fin?

            Comment


              The intake has been there. Probably the countermeasures built into the receding edge of the stabilizer.
              Last edited by MadRat; 15th December 2015, 02:20.
              Go Huskers!

              Comment


                Originally posted by MadRat View Post
                The intake has been there. Probably the countermeasures built into the receding edge of the stabilizer.
                where? what countermeasures?

                Comment


                  i think Deino is talking about what looks like some sort of sensor at the top end of the vertical stabiliser.any idea what it is for?

                  Comment


                    Originally posted by nkvd View Post
                    i think Deino is talking about what looks like some sort of sensor at the top end of the vertical stabiliser.any idea what it is for?
                    Yes ... but first of all I simply missed them - seems to be RWR - on older images ...

                    Anyway ... any news, any new images ?

                    Deino
                    ...

                    He was my North, my South, my East and West,
                    My working week and my Sunday rest,
                    My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song;
                    I thought that love would last forever; I was wrong.

                    The stars are not wanted now; put out every one:
                    Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun;
                    Pour away the ocean and sweep up the woods:
                    For nothing now can ever come to any good.
                    -------------------------------------------------
                    W.H.Auden (1945)

                    Comment


                      Last news on the Tejas program was this

                      Team LCA gears up for increased orders
                      Chethan Kumar,TNN | Dec 11, 2015, 06.43 AM IST

                      BENGALURU: From imported robotic machine to drill holes to Bengaluru based 3D printing of components, Team LCA is gearing up for increased orders for the Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Tejas for the Indian Air Force.

                      With IAF increasing its order of LCAs forcing HAL to manufacture 108 aircraft for six squadrons, the defence PSU is scaling up quality and speed.

                      A robotic drilling machine in the final assembly hangar has reduced the time taken to drill a hole on the wing skin to just over a minute from 25-35 minutes it took manually.

                      The machine, which needs to drill around 8,000 holes, can manage 66% with the remaining done manually. "That will change soon; we'll soon have more efficiency," LCA division general manager V Sridharan told TOI. HAL is using Bengaluru-based 3D printing for some components. "A proposal to acquire such a printer is being prepared but now, we're outsourcing it," he said.

                      Sources in HAL said given the Centre's Make in India campaign and to save on time, outsourcing some manufacturing has happened and a few other projects are in the pipeline. The wing assembly has been outsourced to L&T, while 10 vendors will be in the fray for the centre and rear fuselage, for which tenders will be floated soon. "Outsourcing of 33 electrical panels, six mechanical assembly projects making of fin and rudder, etc is under way," they said.

                      Stating that the second Series Pro duction Tejas is in the final stages of assembly and will be ready for IAF in the next 45 days, Sridharan said: "By the fourth or fifth aircraft, we should be able further reduce the time."


                      Earlier this year, HAL handed over an aircraft to the IAF, which is undergoing some changes. The second in the series is almost ready . To enhance the rate of production, HAL had late last year sent a proposal to the defence ministry for setting up a second production line.A senior official said the ministry is likely to clear it by February .

                      HAL has invested Rs 150 crore for capacity augmentation. According to the proposal, HAL is expected to invest 50% of the Rs 1,200-crore estimated cost, while the IAF and the Navy will invest 25% each.
                      LCA team gears up for increased orders

                      Comment


                        Sources in HAL said given the Centre's Make in India campaign and to save on time, outsourcing some manufacturing has happened and a few other projects are in the pipeline. The wing assembly has been outsourced to L&T, while 10 vendors will be in the fray for the centre and rear fuselage, for which tenders will be floated soon. "Outsourcing of 33 electrical panels, six mechanical assembly projects making of fin and rudder, etc is under way," they said.
                        I am simply amazed that production has still not been organised.
                        Sum ergo cogito

                        Comment


                          What is so surprising about that? They are trying to develop their MIC, so outsourcing is an ongoing process. Even some Sukhoi spare part production is to be outsourced.
                          Its no big deal as long as regular production continues from the primary manufacturer.

                          Comment


                            Originally posted by CoffeeBean View Post
                            What is so surprising about that? They are trying to develop their MIC, so outsourcing is an ongoing process. Even some Sukhoi spare part production is to be outsourced.
                            Its no big deal as long as regular production continues from the primary manufacturer.
                            The primary manufacturer is no good at making Tejas. Regular production, you say. IIRC should have delivered 2 in 2014, 4 in 2015. So far HAL have delivered 1. I don't call that regular production. Don't remember if or was 4 or 8 scheduled for 2016. Don't suppose it matters much since HAL. ADA and whoever else with fingers in the pie don't appear to be capable of doing anything on time where Tejas is concerned nor do they seem to be too concerned about that.

                            It's OK, though. India can always increase Rafale orders to make up for Tejas failing to materialise.
                            Sum ergo cogito

                            Comment


                              The design only got finalized a few months ago, you know?! Production normally ramps up only after design finalization.

                              Plus there are delays in nearly every high-tech program. Why dont you go back and look at how long it took to get Typhoon produced from a very experienced manufacturer.

                              In the end, even if the worst happens, they would have invested into developing their MIC + tech and in addition be spending money on a capable fighter (instead of the sub-par Typhoon).
                              Last edited by CoffeeBean; 19th December 2015, 03:03.

                              Comment


                                Originally posted by CoffeeBean View Post
                                The design only got finalized a few months ago, you know?! Production normally ramps up only after design finalization.

                                Plus there are delays in nearly every high-tech program. Why dont you go back and look at how long it took to get Typhoon produced from a very experienced manufacturer.

                                In the end, even if the worst happens, they would have invested into developing their MIC + tech and in addition be spending money on a capable fighter (instead of the sub-par Typhoon).
                                Agreed, it has taken many years too long to develop Typhoon. It doesn't even have an AESA. Difference there, though, is that the developers/manufacturers did not promise delivery years ago and fail to deliver. It wasn't given the go ahead until this year.

                                As for Tejas working as intended, it doesn't. Any fighter needing a large amount of ballast to correct design flaws does not work as intended. What's sad is that with half decent project management and an acceptance of accountability (which is painfully absent), IMO Tejas would have been more than a remarkable exercise in developing a fast jet capability from scratch. I think it would have resulted in dozens of capable light fighters - urgently required to replace MiG-21's - being in IAF service by now.
                                Sum ergo cogito

                                Comment


                                  Originally posted by Deino View Post
                                  Anyway ... any news, any new images ?

                                  Comment


                                    Originally posted by CoffeeBean View Post
                                    The design only got finalized a few months ago, you know?! Production normally ramps up only after design finalization.

                                    Plus there are delays in nearly every high-tech program. Why dont you go back and look at how long it took to get Typhoon produced from a very experienced manufacturer.

                                    In the end, even if the worst happens, they would have invested into developing their MIC + tech and in addition be spending money on a capable fighter (instead of the sub-par Typhoon).
                                    Bit of a difference. The design was only finalised a few months ago, you say. I'm surprised that you don't see that as a condemnation of the programme.

                                    More capable that Typhoon?
                                    Juris praecepta sunt haec: honeste vivere, alterum non laedere, suum cuique tribuere.
                                    Justinian

                                    Comment


                                      Originally posted by CoffeeBean View Post
                                      The design only got finalized a few months ago, you know?! Production normally ramps up only after design finalization.

                                      Plus there are delays in nearly every high-tech program.
                                      Has the design of Mk1-A been finalised or are you talking of the design of Mk1 being finally finalised 5+ years late? Yes, there are delays in nearly every high-tech program but it is extremely unusual for a new aircraft program to fall 5-10 years behind. The delays in the LCA program dwarf even those in the F-35 program. One reason for LCA was to replace several hundred MiG-21 that would need replacing 15/20 years after the LCA program was started. Vast amounts of time have been wasted through inadequate planning, inadequate decision making, inadequate execution and a deep reluctance to confront failings on all those fronts. Sadly I don't see any real sign of that changing.

                                      Still, IAF will eventually get a squadron or two of Mk1 aircraft which will be more capable than the aircraft they are replacing. The project management problems afflicting Mk1 are set to continue with Mk1-A, so I expect that will be subject to the risk of further unpredictable delay. I just hope that AMCA is not undertaken without a radical improvement in project management being effected first. If not, I expect India to have a fleet of 100-200 Rafales and 0 AMCA's in 2030.
                                      Sum ergo cogito

                                      Comment


                                        Originally posted by swerve View Post
                                        Bit of a difference. The design was only finalised a few months ago, you say. I'm surprised that you don't see that as a condemnation of the programme.

                                        More capable that Typhoon?
                                        You didn't understand. Worst care scenario would be LCA cancelled or even much further delayed... leading to more Rafale buy (which is superior to Typhoon )

                                        LCA has been past so many deadlines that I do not want to predict MK-1A service entry time. I understand there have been many reasons for delays (some of which beyond the ADA/HAL team) but the missed deadlines are still disappointing. One can only hope they dont face too many issues and ramp up production on schedule. For this some outsourcing can be beneficial.
                                        Last edited by CoffeeBean; 19th December 2015, 15:38.

                                        Comment


                                          Originally posted by Spitfire9 View Post
                                          Has the design of Mk1-A been finalised or are you talking of the design of Mk1 being finally finalised 5+ years late? Yes, there are delays in nearly every high-tech program but it is extremely unusual for a new aircraft program to fall 5-10 years behind. The delays in the LCA program dwarf even those in the F-35 program. One reason for LCA was to replace several hundred MiG-21 that would need replacing 15/20 years after the LCA program was started. Vast amounts of time have been wasted through inadequate planning, inadequate decision making, inadequate execution and a deep reluctance to confront failings on all those fronts. Sadly I don't see any real sign of that changing.
                                          .
                                          Remember that the LCA was originally planned to begin to replace the MiG-21 in the latter half of the 1990s. So 5-10 years behind is not enough, in reality its 20 years late (and counting). That has got to be some world record.

                                          Comment


                                           

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