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Pakistan's indigenous fifth-generation fighter aircraft completes initial conceptual design phase


Pakistan’s “Project Azm” whose centrepiece involves development of its own fifth generation fighter has accelerated, with first of the four “conceptual design phase” cycles being concluded.


Pakistans indigenous fifth generation fighter aircraft completes initial conceptual design phase A non official concept art of FGFA (Picture source: globalsecurity.org)


The MoDP yearbook stated that the AvRID Secretariat has completed the first cycle of the conceptual design. It stated, “The first cycle of the conceptual design phase has been completed. The first configuration that was designed based on the challenging performance requirements of PAF will go through three more cycles within the conceptual design using higher fidelity analysis tools and codes.”

The Fifth-Generation Fighter Aircraft (FGFA) is the highlight of the much-anticipated Project Azm, which outlines the PAF’s ambition for developing a state of the art aviation industrial base within the country. This aviation industrial complex will support the defense capabilities of the country, alongside fulfilling civilian and commercial aviation needs.

The PAF formally initiated Project Azm in July 2017 with the objective of developing an FGFA, a medium-altitude and long-endurance (MALE) unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), new munitions, and other projects.

When it announced Project Azm, the then Chief of Air Staff (CAS), Air Chief Marshal (ACM) Sohail Aman, had stated that the design work of the MALE UAV was in its “final stages.” The 2017-2018 MoDP yearbook stated that the scheduled deadline for the MALE UAV’s maiden flight was June 2019.

In terms of the FGFA, in a recent interview with the PAF Chief of Air Staff (CAS), Air Chief Marshal Mujahid Anwar Khan, stated that he does not expect the FGFA to become operational for “another decade.”