Russia to partner in AMCA Technologies

By SP's Special Correspondent March 7, 2015

India has approached Russia to partner it on certain critical technologies for the Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA). Top sources tell SP's that the Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA) has asked Russia for assistance in developing thrust vectoring and certain other technologies on the concept fifth generation jet platform. There has been steady progress in the programme following the basic design freeze. The ADA has opened discussions with turbofan houses in the US, Russia and Europe for what it believes need to be 110 kN engines in twin configuration for the AMCA. The engines will specifically need to support supercruise. The ADA has indicated to engine manufacturers that modifications could potentially be a joint effort in country, involving the DRDO and other agencies if necessary. Either way, the ADA has ambitiously aimed at producing up to four prototypes, with the first rolling out in 2019. As the ADA recently set down as the aircraft's profile and definition, "The AMCA is being designed as a stealth, medium weight, twin engine, multimission aircraft with a swing-role capability. Among the advanced technologies that confer stealth capabilities are serpentine air intakes, internal weapons bays, radar absorbing structure (RAS), radar absorbing materials (RAM), frequency selective surface radome and conformal air data probes. The avionics system features integrated modular architecture supporting NCW capabilities, advanced pilot-vehicle interface, pilot associate and integrated vehicle health management. The integrated flight and propulsion control system will combine the traditional flight control functions with thrust vectoring and engine control functions."