Analyzing the Tejas Mk-1A Capabilities and Role in the IAF

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SInce its debut on 27th february, debate surrounding the indigenous Tejas Mk-1A fighter jet and its ability to compete with the Pakistani Air Force's (PAF) fighter jets, particularly the F-16, has been a subject of ongoing discussion.

This article aims to delve into the Tejas Mk-1A's capabilities, dispel misconceptions, and highlight its crucial role within the Indian Air Force (IAF).

Addressing the Misconceptions​

A common misconception is that the Tejas Mk-1A is solely designed to counter older F-16 models in the PAF's fleet. However, the IAF's vision for the Tejas Mk-1A extends far beyond this limited scope.

The fighter jet is intended to be a versatile asset capable of engaging a wide range of modern threats, including newer F-16 variants, the JF-17, and the J-10CE.

The narrative that the Tejas Mk-1A isn't tailored for specific opponents underestimates its true potential. In real-world combat scenarios, adaptability and readiness are paramount.

The Tejas Mk-1A, equipped with advanced avionics, the Astra Mk1 missile, and a capable radar, presents a formidable challenge to adversaries.

Furthermore, pilot skill, tactical acumen, and situational awareness – factors often overlooked in simplistic comparisons – play a pivotal role in air combat outcomes.

Beyond Specifications: The IAF's Approach​

Air superiority isn't solely determined by raw specifications on paper. The IAF recognizes this and has implemented a comprehensive training program to ensure its pilots are prepared for diverse aerial combat scenarios.

The Dissimilar Air Combat Training (DACT) program exposes Tejas pilots to a variety of potential adversaries, including F-16s encountered during international exercises. This rigorous training regimen allows pilots to hone their skills and maximize the Tejas Mk-1A's capabilities in a realistic setting.

Adaptability and Evolution​

Combat experiences offer valuable insights for improvement. A recent incident involving the PAF's use of electronic warfare (EW) jamming highlighted a communication vulnerability, which the IAF is actively addressing through upgrades.

This responsiveness underscores the Tejas program's adaptability and commitment to continuous enhancement based on operational feedback.

In Conclusion​

The Tejas Mk-1A is far from an "excuse;" it's a capable and evolving platform that represents India's growing self-reliance in fighter jet technology.

The IAF's commitment to pilot training, evolving tactics, and continuous upgrades ensures the Tejas Mk-1A's relevance in the dynamic aerial landscape of the Indian subcontinent.

As part of a larger integrated air defense network, the Tejas Mk-1A plays a critical role in safeguarding India's airspace and maintaining its air superiority.
 
Tejas Mk IA with an AESA radar is a capable contender by every means as it will be equipped with Astra Mk I ( 110+kms range) and II (160+ km range) interceptors for air superiority duties.

However, Tejas Mk I is not a capable fighter by any means as has only simple radar.

Truth and facts must be spoken and presented honestly.
 
All said is good, but where is the plane???... it's June now, re-re-re-delayed!!!!
 
There is one glaring weakness in the IAF, communication jamming . The Porkis had better jamming capabilities then the IAF They use a Falcon 20 jamming platform supplied buy the french a long time ago , and it still does a good job . Turkey has offered to modernize it with better capabilities. In a conversation with late grp capt late Perumal Alagaraja , who flew recce Canberra's in kargil war. He died of heart attack after retirement and not in battle(shaurya chakra) he clearly told me that the pakis had jammed the RT of IAF fighters . He told me he that he could not communicate to other fighters and mig 29 escorts due to jamming. It again pains me to realize the IAF did not learn a lesson in the balakot strike as it is made out above. He was struck by stinger missile on one engine and managed to land back at base , so the award.
we now have the Israeli BNET which is state of the art data link and com system being fitted on all our platforms at last.
The AESA equipped JF-17 and J-10 are the real opponents to the LCA mk1 A. Apart from speed acceleration the F-16 has no greater advantage as it has an inferior radar and ew systems compared to the LCA mk1A . US will never upgrade the f-16 as of now. Now we know how to jam the AMARRAM missile as evident in the post balakot skirmish where 5 amraams we jammed by the SU-30mki .
 
Let's be honest, the most economically sensible & strategically feasible option for IAF is to:-
  1. Buy Additional 18 to 36 Rafale Jets
  2. Form a JV with IN to invest in TEBDF (ORCA) Program
Tejas-Mk1A was designed to be an interceptor Aircraft to replace Mig-21s & with it's known specializations, it's more than suitable to fulfill this role.

India can cause huge damages to Pakistan by using a combo of Surface & Air version of Brahmos Missiles.

Indian-Govt should invest in the following under Make-in-India program:-
  1. Additional C-295 Aircraft
  2. Additional 3 to 9 Kalvari-SSKs with DRDO's AIP system
  3. Airbus A320 for AWACS, MPA, ISR, VIP & Civil Roles
  4. Airbus A330 for AWACS, MRTT, VIP & Civil Roles
  5. Additional 100 to 200 K-9 Vajra SPGs
 
There is one glaring weakness in the IAF, communication jamming . The Porkis had better jamming capabilities then the IAF They use a Falcon 20 jamming platform supplied buy the french a long time ago , and it still does a good job . Turkey has offered to modernize it with better capabilities. In a conversation with late grp capt late Perumal Alagaraja , who flew recce Canberra's in kargil war. He died of heart attack after retirement and not in battle(shaurya chakra) he clearly told me that the pakis had jammed the RT of IAF fighters . He told me he that he could not communicate to other fighters and mig 29 escorts due to jamming. It again pains me to realize the IAF did not learn a lesson in the balakot strike as it is made out above. He was struck by stinger missile on one engine and managed to land back at base , so the award.
we now have the Israeli BNET which is state of the art data link and com system being fitted on all our platforms at last.
The AESA equipped JF-17 and J-10 are the real opponents to the LCA mk1 A. Apart from speed acceleration the F-16 has no greater advantage as it has an inferior radar and ew systems compared to the LCA mk1A . US will never upgrade the f-16 as of now. Now we know how to jam the AMARRAM missile as evident in the post balakot skirmish where 5 amraams we jammed by the SU-30mki .
The communication issue has been resolved with our jets now having EW and ESM. The main problem that Pakistan has with the junk fighter and J10 is that their technology and equipment is defective, unreliable and underperforms on every aspect. It doesn’t do anything that the Chinese claim it can do but India still has a better edge and air force over Pakistan. Most of the Chinese jets are grounded due to parts, engine and technology issue and if requires constant and regular maintenance followed by expensive imports and parts that China sells.
 
Tejas has a significant advantage being a smaller, nimble and agile jet. It has a low RCS, some stealth features, advanced technology and weapons capability making it a very powerful jet for defence and to attack across borders.
 
Tejas Mk IA with an AESA radar is a capable contender by every means as it will be equipped with Astra Mk I ( 110+kms range) and II (160+ km range) interceptors for air superiority duties.

However, Tejas Mk I is not a capable fighter by any means as has only simple radar.

Truth and facts must be spoken and presented honestly.
Tejas MK2 would be a superior 4 th gen Medium Weight Fighter Contender against the likes of J10 and Gripen.
 

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