India’s state-owned defense company Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) has placed an order with GE Aviation to supply 99 F404-GE-IN20 afterburning turbofan engines for Tejas light combat aircraft (LCA). The F404-GE-IN20 engine is the highest thrust variant of the F404 family. It features GE’s latest hot section material and technologies, as well as full authority digital engine control (FADEC) for reliable power and improved operational characteristics.The deal is valued at $716m and is considered one of the largest Tejas LCA deals signed so far. It includes the delivery of other support services.
The General Electric F404/F412 are a family of afterburning turbofan engines in the 10,500–19,000 lbf (47–85 kN) class (static thrust). The General Electric F404 series are produced by GE Aviation. The first version of the F404 was developed to power the Boeing F/A-18, and non-afterburning derivatives powered the F-117A Stealth Fighter and the Singapore A4-SU Super Skyhawk. Partners include Volvo Aero, which builds the RM12 variant. The F404 was developed into the larger F414 turbofan, as well as the experimental GE36 civil propfan. The F404 family engines have logged in more than 14 million engine flight hours, and powered 15 different production and prototype aircraft.
Hindustan Aeronautics Limited has been working closely with GE for its support to pursue the export potential of LCA and supply spares to the global supply chain of GE 404 engines. The F404-GE-IN20 engine is an enhanced production version of the F404, which is successfully powering India’s Light Combat Aircraft MKI. The highest thrust variant of the F404 family, the F404-GE-IN20 incorporates GE’s latest hot section materials and technologies, as well as a Full Authority Digital Electronic Control (FADEC) for reliable power and outstanding operational characteristics.
The HAL Tejas is an Indian single-engine multirole light fighter designed by the Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA) in collaboration with Aircraft Research and Design Centre (ARDC) of Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) for the Indian Air Force and Indian Navy. Tejas has a tail-less compound delta-wing configuration with a single vertical stabilizer. This provides better high-alpha performance characteristics than conventional wing designs. It came from the Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) programme, which began in the 1980s to replace India’s ageing MiG-21 fighters. In 2003, the LCA was officially named “Tejas”.