India achieved yet another milestone today, with the unveiling of its first indigenous naval Light Combat Aircraft, LCA (Navy), NP1 in Bangalore.
The NP1 was rolled out from Bangalore's Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) facility at an event attended by defence minister AK Antony and other senior officials with navy chief admiral Nirmal Verma presiding as the chief guest of the function.
According to observers, the event marks a landmark in the naval programme of the Bangalore-based Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA), where the aircraft was built.
The aircraft is now in the process of being geared up for commissioning into the Navy. The LCA would undergo a series of systems integration tests involving ground runs, taxi trials and flight trials. The first flight of the LCA is scheduled for the year end.
It would then be deployed aboard the indigenous aircraft carrier (IAC) by 2015, currently under construction at the Cochin Shipyard.
The LCA is equipped with state-of-the-technology and the GE-F-IN20 engine and is designed for Ski-jump Take Off But Arrested Recovery (STOBAR) operations.