In a role reversal, India has offered to sell its indigenously developed Lead in Fighter Trainer (LIFT) version of the Tejas Light Combat Aircraft to the US Navy, which has floated a Request for Information (RFI) to acquire a fighter jet trainer required for pilot training on aircraft carriers, Economic Times has reported.
As per the report, it is the first time India has made a defence sales pitch to the US. The US Navy requires these jets for its Undergraduate Jet Training System (UJTS).
The aircraft is based on the advanced LCA Tejas Mk 1A variant and meets all the basic parameters like capability to provide a field carrier landing practice and carrier touch and go events. The jet also includes advanced avionics which enable it to mimic almost all types of jets, from cockpit display layout to control performances.
India in response to the RFI has sent a detailed project plan to the US which is currently evaluating the same. If shortlisted, India has also offered to build a demonstrator version of the jet.
While India is competing against a host of global manufacturers, what sets it apart from the rest is an absence of similar jets in the market. The extensively tested LCA has also demonstrated its capability of operating from an aircraft carrier.
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