With the Kaveri jet engine programme stalled due to technological challenges, the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) is planning to set up a new complex to develop jet engines for future Indian fighter aircraft.
This report in the Economic Times says that the complex may develop a completely new jet engine, one that can provide a thrust of 110 kilo newtons.
The engine, which may come up within seven years of starting work, will be used for the future class of Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA), the fifth generation fighter currently in development for the Indian Air Force.
“The new engine complex is being set up as a national mission to develop a 110 kilo newton powered engine for the future class of AMCA and could produce the engine within seven years of starting work,” the report says.
This development comes at a time when the Comptroller and Auditor General of India has come down heavily on the government’s offset policy for defence procurement, saying that the transfer of technology to DRDO for reviving the stalled Kaveri engine programme, part of the deal, has not been completed.
“DRDO wanted to obtain Technical Assistance for the indigenous development of engine (Kaveri) for the Light Combat Aircraft. Till date, the Vendor has not confirmed the transfer of this technology,” the CAG says in its report.
It was not clear if the transfer will even take place, the CAG added.
In this respect, the Economic Times report says the new complex may receive French assistance in the development of the new jet engine and discussions for the same are currently on between the two sides.