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    France makes move to revive Kaveri jet engine project

    Synopsis

    A detailed presentation on creating an aircraft engine ecosystem in India was given to the minister who had gone for the handing over ceremony of the Rafale fighter jets.

    French engine manufacturer Safran pitched its proposal for the co-development of the Kaveri engine for the Indian Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) program.
    NEW DELHI: France has made fresh efforts to revive plans to develop the indigenous Kaveri fighter jet engine as part of the Rafale offsets deal, with a briefing for the project made to Union Defence minister Rajnath Singh during his visit this week.

    A detailed presentation on creating an aircraft engine ecosystem in India was given to the minister who had gone for the handing over ceremony of the Rafale fighter jets. French engine manufacturer Safran, which makes the engines and electronics for the Rafale fighters, pitched its proposal for the co-development of the Kaveri engine for the Indian Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) program.

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    According to sources, the French side emphasised that India was the only country to which such advanced technology transfer was being offered and that the country would achieve ‘sovereignty’ on aero engine tech.

    The French side pledged to transfer more work for the production of the M-88 engine that powers its fighter jets to India if orders for more of the combat aircraft are received. “If India orders 36 more Rafale jets, more engine parts would be made in India to meet offset conditions,” sources aware of the briefing said.

    As reported by ET, plans to revive the indigenous Kaveri project with the help of French technology fell through after the Indian side found the pricing prohibitive. Talks hit a roadblock after it emerged that only a part of the offsets — just over Euro 250 million — could be utilised for the projects and that Defence Research and Development Organisation would have had to provide the remaining Euro 500 million.

    The upgraded Kaveri engine is not being considered for the next batch of 83 LCAs to be made in India and the jets are likely to be powered by engines supplied by US’ General Electric. India also has a plan for a next generation Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft but it is still in the design phase.

    Estimates shows that for a fleet of 200 LCAs, the cost of engines alone would be in excess of Euro 25 billion over the lifecycle of the aircraft.
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    28 Comments on this Story

    Vishnu Pundle376 days ago
    France is fooling us. At the end of Rafale supply, i.e. after 36 fighter planes, you will observe that we have nothing in our hand.French are not trustworthy as Germans were earlier.
    vivek beri382 days ago
    theengineer.co.uk/rolls-royce-single-crystal-turbine-blade/
    vivek beri382 days ago
    The Trent XWB engine; the turbine blades sit just in front of the flared region at the back
    This means the blades operate in an environment several hundreds of degrees hotter than the melting point of the nickel alloy. To stop them melting, the metal must be cooled. This is done via two mechanisms: the blades are coated with a low-conductivity ceramic; and they are riddled with a complex, branching structure of internal channels. “Air is drawn from the HP compressor, routed through the core of the engine and into the root of the blades,” explained Glover.
    “It passes through the cooling channels and exits through a myriad of holes in the surface of the blade, to create an envelope of cool air around the blade. So the metal is never above its melting point, even though the environment is. The cooling air isn’t actually that cool; it’s at about 600–650°C, but we have to take it from the hot core of the engine so it has enough pressure to get through the channels and out of the holes. It’s still enough to keep the blade temperature down to about 1,150°C.”
    Heat is vital to jets; the hotter they can operate, the more energy they can extract from their fuel. This is the major point of competition between engine makers, so over the six decades jets have been in operation, forcing the temperature higher, and developing turbine blades that can withstand the heat, has been one of the most important technology races in the sector. It’s been a gradual process, Glover said, culminating in
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