Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) has inked an MoU with Defence Research and Development Organisation’s (DRDO) Aeronautical Development Agency for the fifth generation Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA) programme. The MoU was signed on the sidelines of the Bandhan Ceremony during Aero India 2023 held from February 13 to 17 in Bengaluru.
According to BEL, the MoU will allow it and ADA to utilise its strengths and capabilities for the development of AMCA.
“The MoU aims at leveraging the complementary strengths and capabilities of BEL and ADA, wherein both the parties will co-operate for the design, development, qualification, production and supply of Internal Weapon Bay Computer and other LRUs for AMCA and provide lifetime product support to the Indian Air Force,” read BEL’s official statement.
What’s special about AMCA?
The Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA) is a fifth Generation, multi-role, all-weather fighter aircraft designed with high survivability and stealth capability. The fighter jet will be capable of carrying out air superiority, ground strikes, suppression of enemy air defences and electronic warfare missions.
In addition to stealth features, the advanced aircraft will have an internal weapons bay, three-dimensional thrust vectoring, and an Indian-made Uttam active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar. With a combat range of 1,620 kilometres, AMCA would boast of reaching a top speed of more than 2,600 kilometres per hour (Mach 2.15). The non-stealth version of the fighter will have 14 hardpoints and a 23 mm cannon, allowing it to carry 6,500 kilogrammes of ordnance.
The Aeronautical Development Agency
Established under the Department of Defence Research and Development (DR&D), the Agency is responsible for overseeing the India’s Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) programme. The main goal of the ADA is to design and develop the LCA in order to satisfy the Air Staff Requirements (ASR) set forth by the Indian Air Force. Subsequently, the carrier-borne naval variant and advance version of the LCA (Mk1A, Mk2), Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA), Twin Engine Deck Based Fighter (TEDBF) Aircraft, etc., are also designed and developed by ADA.
The Navratna Defence PSU, BEL also signed an MoU with Cisco during the recently held Aero India in Bengaluru. The MoU focuses on long- term strategic cooperation in the areas of networking, collaboration and security, among other associated services. With the move, BEL intends to form its relationship with Cisco as a ‘Strategic Partner’.