Army to soon get indigenous weaponised chopper Advanced Light Helicopter 'Rudra'
NEW DELHI: Army's aerial firepower capabilities will get a boost as it is soon going to induct the attack version of indigenously-built Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH) 'Rudra'.
The 'Rudra' is the first weaponised chopper built in the country and will be inducted into the Army Aviation Corps in the current financial year, army officials said.
Armed with an array of guns, rocket pods, air-to-air and anti-tank guided missiles, the fleet of the weaponised helicopters, the "heavily-loaded" ALH, has been approved for induction as part of modernisation and capability development efforts by the government, they said.
Integration of the weaponised aerial platform into the army will provide the field commanders the ability to apply decisive combat power at critical times anywhere in the battle field, they said.
Rudra is an armed variant of the ALH Dhruva chopper and "necessary changes have been made in the airframe of the chopper to give it agility and speed to make it a suitable support weapon for the ground troops".
The chopper has been named 'Rudra', one of the names of Lord Shiva who is worshipped as the destroyer of enemies, to signify the helicopter's firepower and capabilities. .
The HAL is also in the process of developing a Light Combat Helicopter (LCH) which will be inducted in both the army and the Indian Air Force.
The 5.5 tonne class twin engine chopper has a number of advanced features such as Automatic Flight Control System, Integrated Dynamic System, Full Authority Digital Electronic Control can cruise at speeds of 250 km per hour.
No Nitesh LCH is a attack copter(Cant carry personal) ALH Rudra is capable of Attack and carry Personal they are both important and needed ...... One is a destroyer and other is capable of destroying and capable of placing troops on the front-line.....
India’s Integrated Guided Missile Development Program got another boost last week when the HELINA Anti- Tank missile was successful tested on the ALH Rudra. It was an separation test which was 100% success. This was the first test in which an Indian missile was tested form an Indian platform. A full test will follow soon.
HELINA is an Anti-Tank IIR (Imaging Infra-red) guided missile with 7-8 Kms ranges. Its developed from the land based NAG ant-tank missile.
The ability of the Indian Armed forces, especially of the Indian Army, to take on China and Pakistan in the icy Himalayan heights will get a new boost soon.
By March 2013, the Indian Army's plan to have an inbuilt air component for each of its 13 Corps (a Corps has approximately 60,000 soldiers) will begin to take shape.
According to a plan drawn up by the Army Aviation Corps, each Corps will have three squadrons (30 helicopters) of various types. The three squadrons will have three distinct roles--reconnaissance and surveillance, attack and utility.
Currently, Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) is tasked with manufacturing 60 LCH Rudras. The first 20 helicopters are expected to be inducted into the Army Aviation Corps starting March 2013 after the choppers are put through the mandatory Initial Operational Clearance (IOC) at the Bangalore-based Centre for Military Airworthiness and Certification (CEMILAC).
HAL which has developed the armed helicopters will be responsible for carrying out the certification process.
The Rudra will come armed with a M6-21, 20 MM turret gun, 70 mm rockets, besides anti-tank guided missile as well as air to air missiles.
The first two squadrons of the Rudra will be armed with imported missiles. The subsequent batches of helicopters will be armed with indigenously made missiles.
The Rudra is powered by a new Shakti engine which has been jointly developed by the HAL and French engine manufacturer Turbomeca. The new engine will allow the Rudra to fly at altitudes above 20,000 ft.
The Himalayas along the India-China border and in areas along the Pakistan border at places rise to as much as 20,000 feet and beyond. The newly developed Shakti engines will enable the choppers to fly to these heights with a full weapon pay-load.
The importance of the new machines joining the Indian Armed Forces cannot be over emphasised. The current attack helicopters - Russian made MI-25 and MI-35 helicopters cannot fly beyond 12000 feet.
The Rudra is the armed version of the Advanced light helicopter (ALH) that is already in service. The helicopter has integrated sensors, weapons and Electronic Warfare (WEW) suite. The sensors include Infra- Red Imaging, day and night cameras and a laser ranging and designation device.
The helicopter also has advanced missile, radar and laser tracking warning system.
Besides this, to reduce the load on the pilots it has countermeasures like chaff and fare which are dispensed automatically.
Sources told NDTV that the first 60 helicopters will be inducted into the three Strike Corps of the Indian Army, based respectively in Bhopal, Ambala and Mathura and then in formations deployed along the India-China border both in the North-east and Ladakh.
The final plan of the Indian Army is to have a separate brigade of Aviation Corps with each of the 13 Corps of the Indian Army. Each of these Aviation Brigades are expected to have a squadron dedicated to carry out surveillance and reconnaissance, a separate squadron of armed helicopters and third squadron of Light Utility Helicopters for ferrying people and other duties.
The transport capability is not as good on the ALH/ALH WSI but as they can't transprot as many troops or as much equipment but AFAIK the service ceailing on the ALH is superior to the MIL-17s. The firepower on the ALH WSI is significanlty better than on the MIL-17s- the ALH WSI comes with a 20mm NEXTER Helmet controlled cannon, a2a and a2g missiles not to mention unquided rockets. The MIL-17s only come with the abilty to fit unguided rockets or gun pods on the stub wings. The ALH WSI beats the MIL series hands down in firepower for sure.