|Indian Light Combat Aircraft Tejas MK I gets the Final Operational Clearance - FOC.|
On 20 February 2019, the Indian Light Combat Aircraft Tejas MK I reached a new milestone when the formal declaration of Final Operational Clearance (FOC) of the aircraft was made by Secretary Defence R&D and Chairman DRDO Dr G Satheesh Reddy. The day also witnessed the handing over of FOC Certificate and Release to Service Document (RSD) to the Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa, in the presence of Defence Secretary Shri Sanjay Mitra and Chairman and Managing Director of Hindustan Aeronautics Limited Shri R Madhavan.
FOC involves addition of key capabilities to the Initial Operational Clearance (IOC) aircraft which are Beyond Visual Range Missile capabilities. Air-to-Air Refuelling, Air-to-Ground FOC earmarked weapons and general flight envelope expansion.
The RSD provides the capabilities, features and technologies that FOC standard Aircraft will have on Induction into Indian Air Force (IAF). The FOC standard Aircraft drawings have already been handed over to Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) to start production after incorporating key changes over the IOC standard Aircraft.
Initial Operational Clearance (IOC) of the aircraft took place in the year 2013 and IOC standard Aircraft were inducted into IAF No. 45 Squadron, in July 2016.
Source: Government of India
Image: Venkat Mangudi