Atmanirbhar Bharat in defence: compact heat exchangers to be delivered by BHEL for LCA
India’s Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Tejas will soon have compact heat exchanger assemblies manufactured by the state-owned Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd (BHEL). On Monday, BHEL announced through an official statement that it had secured an order from state-owned Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) for compact heat exchanger assemblies for the 83 “Tejas” Mk 1A aircraft. The Indian Air Force (IAF) last year placed an order for 83 LCAs for its fleet to meet the shortage of fighter jets.
According to BHEL’s press release, HAL’s order includes the testing, manufacturing and supply of 83 compact LCA heat exchangers. Since 1996, Heavy Plates and Vessels Plant (HPVP), located in Visakhapatnam, has been the exclusive supplier of heat exchangers for LCA Tejas at HAL.
Learn more about the compact heat exchanger
This was jointly developed by BHEL-HPVP and the Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA), Bangalore. Together, for the environmental control system (ECS) and secondary power system (SPS) of the LCA MK-1 program, they developed 13 different types of compact heat exchangers.
State-owned BHEL is also working with the Defense Research Development Organization (DRDO) in the development of a liquid cooling system (LCS) based on an air cycle machine for the Aircraft application. POD. This system is intended for the LCA Mk2.
For manufacturing state-of-the-art compact heat exchangers for various types of aircraft manufactured by HAL, HPVP already has dedicated complex manufacturing and inspection facilities.
The company statement also indicates that the facilities are being expanded to meet international aerodynamic standards (AS9100). This means that the state corporation BHEL is ready to meet the HAL requirements related to the LCA, Su-30, AMCA and ALH programs.
For the past three decades, the company has been a leading supplier of critical equipment and services to India’s aerospace and defense sector.
Learn more about Tejas Mk 1A (Mark 1A)
Financial Express Online reported last year that the 83 Tejas Mk 1A ordered by the IAF comes with the same airframe and engine as the Mark 1.
And the Mk 1A will be fitted with an AESA radar that was bought off the shelf from Israel. There is also an electronic warfare sequel which also contains native content.
It will be equipped with a state-of-the-art fly by wire (FBW) system and the weapons on board will be a mix of native and imported.
Most Mk 1A upgrades were developed in-house. This also includes FBW.
The Mk 1A also has the capability to fire precision-guided munitions, bombs and beyond-visual-range (BVR) missiles.