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Israeli Rafael To Deliver Litening Targeting Pods For HAL Tejas LCA Fighter Jet Programme

2007-06-05 Rafael has been selected to supply its Litening targeting pod to equip the Indian air force's Aeronautical Development Agency-built Tejas light combat aircraft.

The order - of undisclosed value - covers the production of Litening systems for the service's initial batch of 20 production aircraft.

Defense Update:
LITENING incorporates in a single pod all the targeting features required by a modern strike fighter. The LITENING program, launched by Israel's Research and Development authority RAFAEL in 1992, combines multiple sensors for maximum flexibility in a single pod at low cost.

The original pod included a 1st Generation FLIR, a TV camera, a flash-lamp powered laser designator, laser spot tracker for tracking target designated by other aircraft or from the ground, and an electro-optical point and inertial tracker, which enabled continuous engagement of the target even when the target is partly obscured by clouds or countermeasures.

The HAL Tejas is an advanced, lightweight, supersonic multirole fighter aircraft being developed by India. It is a tailless,[1] compound delta wing design powered by a single engine. Until the aircraft was formally named (by then Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee) as Tejas on 4 May 2003, the project was known as the Light Combat Aircraft (LCA), which continues in popular usage.

Limited series production of the Tejas has commenced in 2007; it is currently projected to achieve limited initial operational clearance (IOC) with the Indian Air Force (IAF) by 2008, followed by full operational clearance (FOC) by the end of 2010.[4] A naval variant capable of operating from the Indian Navy's aircraft carriers is also in development.

As of 26 May 2007, the LCA had completed 672 successful test flights in all (TD1:207, TD2:258,PV1:135,PV2:28,PV3:38,LSP1:6).

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