The Chief of US Air Force, General David L Goldfein flew a sortie in indigenous Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Tejas at the Indian Air Force (IAF) station in Jodhpur, Rajasthan. With this he became first foreign military chief to fly Tejas aircraft. He was accompanied by Air Vice Marshal AP Singh as a co-pilot during the short flight.
General Goldfein was on an official visit to India to boost defence ties between the two nations. Earlier in November 2017, Defence Minister of Singapore Ng Eng Hen was flown in a Tejas fighter jet.
The indigenous LCA is a single-seat, single-jet engine, multirole light fighter. It is fourth generation aircraft that can fly at 1,350 km per hour, with a payload capacity of 4,000 kg. It has been indigenously developed by the Aeronautical Development Agency, and manufactured by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL).
It has been pegged as world’s smallest and lightest supersonic fighter. It is tailless and has compound delta wing design. It is mounted with inbuilt MultiMode Radar (MMR), Radar Warning Receiver (RWR) systems. The first squadron of LCA Tejas named as ‘Flying Daggers’ based in Sulur, Tamil Nadu was inducted in July 2016.