Having woken up to the progress made by countries like China in developing indigenous engines for military aircraft late, the Union government has directed the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) to fast-track the ‘Kaveri’ engine project conceived as the power plant for the Tejas Light Combat Aircraft (LCA).
DRDO director general (aeronautics) K Tamilmani told reporters on Tuesday that that the organisation and Gas Turbine Research Establishment (GTRE), which developed the engine, have been asked to submit a detailed report of funds required to revive the project.
The Kaveri engine has seen development delays of more than 20 years, which finally made it necessary to procure American engines for the Tejas. On the other hand, China recently involved 11 universities to help develop its Shenyang Liming ‘WS-10’ engine. Earlier, it was kept on the backburner after failing to meet airworthiness requirements and had been replaced with a Russian engine on Chinese fighters.
GTRE director C P Ramanarayan said that the Kaveri project, worth Rs 2,108 crore, will now be revived.