Capabilities of JF-17 Group APF
JF-17 program provided an opportunity to achieve self reliance in the field of Avionics. PAF invested heavily in capability and capacity building in four core areas of avionics systems by developing necessary infrastructure and human resource. This included establishment of an indigenous avionics subsystem development setup, DSI lab for integration of JF-17 avionics systems, Generic facilities for production, testing and Environmental Stress Screening of avionics systems & dedicated setup for JF-17 Avionics Subsystems Life Cycle Support.
JF-17 Integration Directorate
The capability to independently integrate any subsystem or weapon of Choice on JF-17 aircraft was considered essential for future avionics up-grade. Accordingly, in phase-I, a Team of officers got ToT training of avionics integration technology in China. It can be stated with pride that Technology that a few nations cherish to master was acquired & APF today is a certified avionics integrator. To support the avionics integration ToT, a Dynamic Simulation & Integration (DSI) laboratory was established at APF in March, 2007. At present a wide range of integration projects are being handled by the integration team. The third important area of Avionics development program is the capability to produce avionics subsystem. The Production and testing facilities were thus established at APF. These facilities include four major areas namely Generic Production Line, This facility can undertake production of SMD.
Design Development & Deletion (DDD) Directorate
- Form Fit Functional replacement of obsolete card and systems
- Designing of NVIS compatible cockpit panels for aircraft and simulators
- PCB schematics, layout design and fabrications
- Micro controller and FPGA based system design
- Real time mission software development
- Aircraft audio system design
- NVIS compatibility of old cockpits
- Design and development of electronics housing and Mil-standard Human Engineering and interface (Knobs, Toggle switched, safety catches)
- Design and development of LRU accessories (Card lock retainer, PCB extractor, PCB extenders, fasteners)
Life Cycle Support (LCS) Directorate
Life cycle Support is the life line of the product during its service life. With a view to establish product life cycle:
- Life Cycle Support infrastructure for JF-17 was setup at APF
- Currently repair of subsystems is being undertaken using co-production test facilities
Calibration Capabilities: To meet the calibration requirements of PME at APF and other PAC factories, ISO 17025 Standard compliant PME Lab is established at APF.
Commercial Capabilities: Utilizing the spare production capacity, APF has launched three commercial products in collaboration with M/S INNAVTEK. These products are: PAC- eBOOK 1, PAC-PAD 1 and PAC-nBOOK 1 and the commercial front end is handled by Commercial Products Manufacturing Centre (CPMC) Company.
Production & Testing (P&T) Directorate
Generic Testing Line, is composed of generic functional & in-circuit testers. These can be utilized to undertake testing of systems being produced. Specific System Department undertakes system assembly and testing utilizing specific to type testers acquired from OEMs. Environmental Stress Screening. Facility has been established for environmental stress screening of the systems being produced at APF in light of MIL-standard 810 E/F. The ESS facility comprises temperature, pressure, humidity and vibration chambers. The environmental test chambers held at APF are capable to carry out production level testing as per applicable military standards. Selective design level test could also be conducted utilizing this facility.
Capabilities of Sensor and Avionics group
The Avionics group deals with the repair and production of airborne avionics systems for the PAF. The major systems include Grifo family of Airborne interceptor radars, IFF, RWR, and AVTR systems. Grifo-7, Grifo-M3 and Grifo-PG radars are being repaired at FAR facility. As per ISO standards, stage wise Quality Control is implemented to ensure the quality repair. Sir, STTE’s are used for this purpose. The broad categories of systems include Navigation systems, displays, air data system, FLIR and HOTAS. STTE’s and generic testers both are used for maintenance purposes. After completion of co-production target of RWR, IFF and AVTR systems, the facility is being used for life cycle maintenance of these systems. In addition, maintenance support for IFF systems is being extended to Army & Navy.
Air Defence System (ADS) Directorate
Maintenance, Rebuild and Overhaul of Ground radars is one of the two major activities being handled by Sensors and Avionics Group. APF has acquired rich experience in this field spanning over two and a half decades. Over the years ADS Group of this factory has acquired capability to overhaul two dimensional low level MPDRs and three dimensional high Power TPS-43 radars. Besides, associated systems like radio relays, heat exchangers and three phase air conditioners are also in the capability list of this group. APF has been putting in dedicated efforts to overhaul the vintage Air Defense systems, which have outlived their’ useful life due to fair wear and tear. Despite obsolescence of spares, the overhauling task achieved till date is 103 MPDRs of different versions, five TPS-43 Radars, 21 radio relays, 45 heat exchangers and 245 air-conditioners. The overhauling process of Air Defense Systems is depicted in this view foil. The process starts with the acceptance of equipment followed by dismantling into major sub assemblies which are fed to various shops for overhaul. On completion of overhaul process of sub assemblies under strict quality control, assembling phase starts. Finally, Electronics and Antenna systems are integrated as one radar which is offered for final quality shake down. Being vintage systems, continuous efforts had been put to acquire indigenous capabilities to reduce dependency on OEMs and to cater obsolescence.