Wednesday, September 12, 2012

India's AMCA Shape Tweaked Again?


This new image from the National Aerospace Laboratory (NAL) depicts a so far unknown (PDF - NAL acting director's annual report) shape configuration of India's Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA), a step up from this configuration that was revealed in June this year, this configuration put out in February last year and this one the year before in 2010. The most notable change on the new configuration is clearly the Hornet-like leading edge extensions, absent on all of the earlier shape configurations. The June configuration was notable for a fully altered wing planform, which carries forward on this new shape.

45 comments :

pankaj said...

NAL HAL make only drawing for 2035 test plane china j-2o operational in 2019 and pak will first customer then result counter tajes operational

Anonymous said...

We don't copy technology from other countries i.e. y it takes us time to build new planes.And this AMCA looks much much more better than the other model planes shown before

Sainulabid Pothangodan said...

Front section resembleces Mig-29

Sarab aka Mirza said...

Why so much hoopla around Mca configuration these all may be wind tunnel model design to test different aspect

Anonymous said...

Ah but Pankaj, the AMCA wont be operational at all. It is only a distraction. The true authentic top secret confidential information from unnamed sources is that, while the rest of the neighbourhood would be in a stealth plane race, the DRDO would be churning out hundreds of small, multisprectral stealth, fully autonomous with advanced AI UCAVs and thousands of micro UCAVs which would be linked to and controlled by the UCAVs. That is in addition to the rapid deployment mini UCAVs that will be almost instantly deployed over trouble spots using the hypersonic reusable space plane.

Now who is obsolete? Us or the chinese?

LOL

Anonymous said...

I wonder what this DRDO people are doing. Are these designs are enough to beat Chines fist?

Anoop G Pillai said...

I wonder what this DRDO people are doing. Are these designs are enough to beat Chines fist?

Anonymous said...

Nice to see that design is improving but fabrication needs to start soon too. Good luck to HAL.

Joy said...

It starting to look more and more like F-35.

sents said...

It lookes like a stealth bomber now. They have reduced the size of it, how many internal bombs it can carry? It looks small.

Sushant said...

You are right shiv, the LERX are like the hornet but if you look at the overall view it entirely resembles a stealthy f-18 now with the positions of the engines, twin vertical stabilizers, the wings and the length of the fuselage. just saying it looks like one nothing more :)

Anonymous said...

man those damn people can not create anything on their own the front and the middle section of the plane looks copied from other planes like F-18 and mig 29.

GM said...

Firstly DRDO must develop an 100kn dry thrust capable engine..

GM said...

Firstly DRDO must develop an 100KN dry thrust capable engine..

sntata said...

To Anonymous@12:13
Ha Ha Ha!!! very funny!!!

Anonymous said...

I think this modification is to incorporate a more powerful engine, which may be longer than estimated earlier. It looks like F-18; may be they'll use engines as well that are similar to F-18's!

Generic Troll said...

Dear Gawd! They call this camouflage? A polar bear would have a better chance of hiding in a coal shed than would this thing in a grey sky.

Anonymous said...

India has not manage to get the much moore simple aircraft Tejas in service yet, When will India get there new superplane in service? 2035?

Anonymous said...

zzzzzzzz. Please post something when an actual piece of metal or composite is cut. Kids in engineering school do this in the United States as a time pass.

Anonymous said...

hey what about kaveri is it delivering enough thrust? I think our air force is not going to accept it with it's currnt thrust.Has gtre fixed it's problems?

Mr. RA said...

Perhaps it has to be more of an attack aircraft, so they are choosing and changing the shapes accordingly. However its stealth feature shall always bear a question mark till it fully emerges and proves itself.

Anonymous said...

Computational Fluid Dynamics study. Looks like pressure contours. This model will be tweaked and re-tweaked. Shiv get ready for your aadrenaline to be pumped for more "Oh, one more AMCA render is out". Time to get down to blogging.

Prodyut said...

Why can't DRDO get even the simplest basics right?! That LERX will cause a kink on the LE which is supposedly anti-stealth. But this is MINOR!

With the "LERX" running well past the cockpit the poor bloody pilot will have NO downward view over the sides.

Any doubt why all our aircraft development programmes run late?
Oh! for the shame and pity of it...!

Sandeep said...

Apologies for a relatively dumb question... but what exactly is a LERX?

sents said...

I think stealth bomber like F-35 is the way to go. We will have a air superiority fighter Pak-Fa with Su30MKI. To do omni role, we will have Rafale. Only thing missing is a stealth bomber, AMCA is going in the right path. Stealth engine will be the most difficult part. They made it small, to make it more stealthier, thats good.

Sushant said...

@ Sandeep, LERX is an abbreviation for 'Leading Edge Root Extensions'

Prodyut said...

For my ha'penny worth I think Stealth FIGHTERS is pretty dumb even as a concept.
.To be truly stealthy you can't carry enough weapons to have a reasonable KP.Stealth should be for a minimum Canberra size aircraft ( by volume) which can stand off and keep shooting salvoes of internally stowed missiles from along distance.

LERX on a stealth fighter? It is NOT supposed to get mixed up in dogfights-not at the current level of technology.
HA!

Anonymous said...

to me it looks like stealth version of F-18

Anonymous said...

I'm afraid NAL turns to NULL, whatever the wing tunnel designs may be, taxpayers are expecting high performance wing, can they satisfy it?

Anonymous said...

Waitaminnit. What does NAL has to do with AMCA's design? The design agency is ADA!

There was a grey-colored cutaway image posted on Livefist with IWBs visible some months ago that's how the final ac is gonna be IMO.

Anonymous said...

Looks like a combined mix between the f-22+f-18+su-30 Awesome!

Rahul Samanta said...

I think this is the Indian Navy version of AMCA.....So there are 2 designs in parallel, one for IAF and one for IN. Let us wait and watch.....

Anonymous said...

The last two designs i.e., those revealed in June and September are worth pursuing. I am quite sure there will be some more changes in the final version. The final version should be as good as any in the world at the moment from the stealth perspective. If it means it will take an extra year to get there, it is worth it, because these platforms have a life of approx. 25 years.

Anonymous said...

well said sir

Anonymous said...

If AMCA is not ready for 2025 or 2035,India has no worry about it.becouse India already has another 5th gen.fighter programme.su-T50 and customised version HAL FGFA.AMCA is only a part of force indigenisation.

Indian said...

PAKFA with it's current stealth configuration (by seeing Frontal-Mid Section-Tail Section) we can make out that,it is designed to be a Medium Heavy class SEMI-STEALTH Combat-AND-STRIKE AC,Similar to F-35(but without a VTOL config.) where as F-117,F-22 and B-2 were conceived and designed to be Absolute Stealth Platforms with very Limited Strike Capability (without compromising their Stealthiness).

Now we are seeing there is a Buzz about a single engine Russian Light Stealth Fighter being designed by MIG using technologies developed MIG's earlier absolute stealth prototype MIG 1.44 (which had stealth capability similar to F-22 but was more agile AC) .

At this moment,Indian MCA,looks like a Risk Mitigation Approach against possible failure of Future FGFA with Russia (If UPA wins 2014 Election this might happen),and MCA (possibly along with a Naval STOL version like F-18 Hornet too will be developed for Future IAC of 65,000 DWT class) with limited stealth and strike capability and (a balanced approach of Stealth vis-a-vis Strike) will become reality with the help of US.

Impacts:
1.India will not have any technology nor any absolute stealth platform to challenge F-22 or similar Future Chinese,Russian,Korean,Japanese and probably Australian platforms,which will be deployed around 2025-2030.

2.Russia will develop another Absolute Stealth Platform exclussivly for it's forces after PAKFA is realized in small numbers(like T-90 case).

3.US is already planning for future more stealthier version beyond F-22 to be deployed by 2025---2030..to maintain their Superiority in the field.

4.Having narrower LREX like F-18 in AMCA will reduce drag & give better flight characteristic during Supersonic flights as we can see the color signatures with Mach 1.3 and AOA 7' in this image.
I feel we can cut thru this LREX to make a Canard (after separating alignments of engine intake and it's airflow from this LREX)will make AMCA more agaile,better AOA and a quick nose lift for attacking as well as defending situations.

Archisman said...

The first couple of versions look similar to a F22. Although it was released as a MCA concept study, we have lapped it up as the final concept and are comparing it with the currently developed and developing aircrafts. designing a stealth fighter is appearing like a pissing contest from the comments above.

As I have heard from a few sources in HAL, the amount of money going into aircraft research is quite limited. And since we have not been a world leading design / manufacturing center for it - its no surprise that the first few aircrafts coming out of the prototype hangars are taking their due time. We have little test data, experience as compared to the established companies- that can be used to build prototypes to beat the global competition.
So hence taking cues from existing design is the quickest way to build a competitor. And we are a country who is very good at reverse engineering. I am not saying that they are doing it here. But if you observe the modus operandi - they appear to be analysing the benchmark (i.e the f22) with the first design. Then after going through all the supersonic and transonic wind tunnel testing, Now they have added lerx to the model. Looks like a great idea to make the aircraft more capable of performing challenging manoevres - good for dogfighting I would say, possibly a naval aircraft as well looking at the size of AMCA. But then you wonder that these days we are talking about bvraams - so dogfighting is getting closer to obsolescence. So why all the fuss about this design and that design. one potential answer is that this is all an exercise to build a national repository of information on how different aerodynamic features impact the performance. (i.e to quantify). If the byproduct is a platform which works then its a bonus. It gets some money in the DRDO to enable them perform their DOE's ( Design of Experiment - based on permutations run on variables ) . Also you can further develop the platform like UAC did on Su27 which further developed onto Su30/33/34/35/37. Hence AMCA in reality is a expensive and complex science project . So is most of our products that come out of DRDO. And which is the nature of the beast because - a capable platform cannot be delivered unless sufficient data is gathered on it.

Anyway when we talk about other platforms - China's stealth aircraft is going to suffer because of its canards. it creates a number of surfaces from which radar waves can be reflected. Plus on top of it - it feeds turbulent air to the leading edge of the main wing and creates early stall - so hence it will not be capable in dogfight. Also that aircraft is heavier and bigger than the F22. So by no means it will a true stealth plane as it currently stands just by the external design. I am sure the chinese know it and they are working to optimise it.

Japan's stealth fighter - if it sees the light of the day would be a benefit to india because they are our allies. But - as it currently stands the constitution of Japan does pose some problems in fully developing this aircraft.

It all depends how the defence big wigs want to use this platform. As is the case with most equipment - if you have the tools you will find a way to use them. And if you dont - you find alternatives.

Anonymous said...

its ok, according to what diggy was saying in a press conference... the plan is to make a plan to build an airplane before 2025.. after that the plan will be finalised b 2050 and the plane operational by the end of the century..

what he doesnt' realise is that by that time, the world will be teleporting soldiers in and the IAF will be left with this crap.

Anonymous said...

Dont you worry anon @6.01 pm IAF will import whatever is available from whatever source. Not for nothing we are worlds largest importers of defense equipment.















Anonymous said...

Tough and worrying news for India. The new China J21/J31 (w/o canards) is going to put India further behind the ball. So what happens now to the buy of non stealthy Rafale to be introduced just 1-2 years before the J20 and J31 operational debut.

Anonymous said...

So with this latest image, can we finally stop with reporting on this subject as if these images actually reflect the configuration of an operation fighter jet that IAF and IN will actually be procuring? These are all simply design studies, nothing more. Sure, everybody knows AMCA will be filling a medium multirole niche, so the models reflect that... But the actual start of the AMCA program is still just so many years off, that it's absurd to treat these as reflective of a soon to be produced aircraft. And realistically, if India had access to a high performance engine that could fulfill the needs with a single engine (ala F-35), I don't see why she shouldn't consider that as well.

Abhishek Kumar said...

Its clearly written there AMCA 3B-O4 CONFIGURATION so this is just a part of optimization of different shapes for arriving at a shape which has best Stealth and Aerodynamic shaping. There would be 100s of models with minor changes in all variants in terms of shaping for testing under different simulated environments and they will finally work out some 4-5 prototypes for wind tunnel testing and all. There would be AMCA 3B-03, 3B-02, 3B-01, 2B-* Etc. like configurations for simulation purposes.

Anonymous said...

The overall aerodynamic shape seems interesting. However, ADA and Air Force should put in further efforts to achieve VLO shaping. Some things to look at are - avoidance of dihedrals / Trihedrals, minimising canopy projection, further wing body blending etc. Best wishes.

Anonymous said...

There is nothing wrong in seeking help from, say Dilip Chabria. ADA or even auto companies in India cannot claim that they can design better than DC. Once the functional issues are taken care of it is better to take help from the pros.

Anonymous said...

Making a stealth fighter based on the outstanding features of the most maneuverable fighter designs makes sense. The latest AMCA design is going along that path. More cues can be taken from the Mig-29 (LERX) and Rafale (wing body blending),
F-22 (stealth shaping), Mirage 2000 (simpliciy of design, optimisation for high and fast flight etc).