Multi Role Helicopters (MRH) to be inducted into Indian Navy

Discussion in 'Indian Navy' started by SpArK, Jun 17, 2011.

  1. Rikbo88

    Rikbo88 Regular Member

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    It's still Sikorsky. But Lockheed owns Sikorsky now. Sikorsky will continue to function as its own entity.
     
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  2. Rikbo88

    Rikbo88 Regular Member

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    Still Sikorsky. Lockheed will keep Sikorsky as a separate business unit.
     
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  3. Rikbo88

    Rikbo88 Regular Member

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    Sikorsky is now owned by LM but will remain as its own business entity. Name recognition is huge and LM is smart enough to know that.
     
  4. Rikbo88

    Rikbo88 Regular Member

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    Not really relevant to this thread but the CH-53K achieved first flight a few days ago. This is one bad ass aircraft. Thought those on this thread would enjoy. Amazing power and lift capabilities. Would make an awesome addition to the IN in the future when they start exporting these.
     
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  5. Prashant12

    Prashant12 Senior Member Senior Member

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    Navy set to open price negotiations for Sikorsky Seahawk Multi Role Helicopters

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    New Delhi. The Indian Navy is finally set to open price negotiations with Sikorsky for buying 24 Seahawk S-70B shipboard multi role helicopters for its operational requirements.




    Ministry of Defence (MoD) sources told India Strategic that although the helicopters were selected in December 2014, there were some issues over cost escalations due to the delay in the procurement process, and the US company’s insistence that it could not hold the prices it had offered in 2008. Recently however, Sikorsky had relented and its team is due to be invited soon for an early conclusion of the price negotiations.

    The subject is likely to be on the agenda during Defence Minister Manohar Parikkar's visit to Washington on December 9 and 10.

    Notably, the Indian Navy had invited bids in 2008 from Sikorsky for S-70B and European NH Industries (NHI) for NH 90. There was some hesitation in opening the latter’s bid, as Finmeccanica, which got embroiled in controversy over the acquisition of VVIP helicopters for the Indian Air Force (IAF), is a major partner in this venture.

    Sikorsky had a walkover accordingly, but it asked for revision in prices as the selection process had taken more than twice the stipulated timelines, and the delivery in any case, has to be three years after the price negotiations conclude and a contract is signed. That is roughly 10 years after its offer was submitted.

    Somehow, MoD repeatedly sought extensions of Sikorsky’s bid, delaying the acquisition process timelines from less than three years to six. Nonetheless, it said there was no provision for cost escalation during the selection and negotiation process.

    Meanwhile, in another development, Sikorsky has been acquired by Lockheed Martin (LM) from United Technologies Corporation (UTC). After the completion of the merger process in early November, Sikorsky was shown for the first time as a Lockheed Martin company at the Dubai Airshow on November 8.

    As for the current status in negotiations with the Indian Navy, Chief of Naval Staff Admiral Robin Dhowan, when asked about the Seahawk Multi Role helicopters, replied that the process was now in an “advanced stage.” Also, the tender, or Request for Proposals (RfP) had sought 16 helicopters with an option for eight more. But Admiral Dhowan had told India Strategic earlier that as the Navy was short of these machines, the deal could be all the 24 machines.

    It may be recalled that the Navy had originally planned to acquire 54 Multi Role Helicopters, and 16 of these should have come in 2007 as replacement for the first lot of quarter century old Britain-supplied Westland Sea Kings. More were to follow progressively. This has not happened, and the Sikorsky Seahawks are likely to start arriving from 2019, more than a decade late.

    The Sikorsky deal is estimated to be around $1 billion-plus for 16 helicopters but there is no official word yet from either side.

    Weapons and sensors will be extra - possibly from other companies but Sikorsky will integrate them in accordance with the contract. The weapon suite will have capability to deal with both underwater (ASuW or Anti Submarine Warfare) and ASW (Anti Surface - Ship - Warfare). Among the suppliers for radars and weapons should be the US Raytheon and Telephonics as well as French Thales. The powerplants (two per machine) will be from GE.

    Significantly, besides the case for MRH under which the Sikorsky S 70 has been selected, there is a second proposal under classification NMRH (Naval Multi Role Helicopter) for 123 machines to meet the pending and growing requirements of the Indian Navy. The choice for that helicopter is yet to be finalized and the case for issuing an RfP is under progress at the MoD.

    A third case which is pending is to replace the 30 to 40 years old Chetaks with Naval Utility Helicopters (NUH), which should be the same as for the Army and Air Force under the Light Utility Helicopter (LUH) requirement. Like most outdated systems, they were needed in yesteryears and it is to be seen how soon they can be produced in the country under the Government’s new Make in India policy.

    It may be noted that the Indian navy has substantial achievements to its credit for building ships indigenously, and with a three aircraft carrier policy, it will need substantial numbers of helicopters for engaging threats and ship to ship or ship to shore communications.

    Source:
    http://www.indiastrategic.in/topsto...r_Sikorsky_Seahawk_Multi_Role_Helicopters.htm
     
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  6. kstriya

    kstriya Regular Member

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    Is there any plan for indigenous multi role helicopter?
     
  7. kaustav2001

    kaustav2001 Regular Member

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  8. WolfPack86

    WolfPack86 Senior Member Senior Member

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  9. Rikbo88

    Rikbo88 Regular Member

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    There have already been discussions between Sikorsky & the IN regarding an Indian produced multi-role helicopter. I think the industry understands this next large buy of multi-role helicopters will need to involve a plan to produce the agreed to platform in India. The S-70B is an adaptable platform that could serve that need and provide model commonality for the Indian Navy for most all of the major components. From the article it sounds like things are moving forward, albeit very slowly. The article notes there were no terms in the original contract that covered cost escalation. In my 28 years with Sikorsky I cannot remember a contract where there was not something regarding the duration for which the proposal response from Sikorsky was valid. That is usually done in terms of an end date stated in the proposal response. After that date, the stated price would no longer be guaranteed and typically require Sikorsky to requote all or part the contractual response. I have not, obviously, seen the contract, but I highly doubt language to achieve the above was not somewhere in the contractual response provided by Sikorsky. However the two parties worked it out, I am gratified to see that things appear to be moving again.
     
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  10. SajeevJino

    SajeevJino Long walk Elite Member

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    Huh ...so Navy to get more S 70 B helicopters ..!!

    Any idea did they also planning to enter the Navy MRH contract ...earlier I heard it's the Airbus EC 725 Caracel joined with Mahindra and bidding for the Tender .. MRH Numbers go beyond hundreds, while ASW numbers may be less than 25
     
  11. Rikbo88

    Rikbo88 Regular Member

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    Have not heard anything about India having discussions with Sikorsky or whether Sikorsky has gone in country to discuss price. Last I heard was the resolution of this issue was still pending. I would be surprised if Sikorsky was able to reduce the price they quoted now almost 5 years ago. At this point I have an additional concern. When I left I suspected there would be obsolescence issues that Sikorsky would have to address with a number of mission and avionics systems. Most notably the Rockwell Collins MFDs and CDUs. At this point, I am concerned, especially now with the take over by Lockheed Martin, that the 60R cockpit would find its way into the S-70B. Lockheed does the cockpit for the Navy's 60R and while a capable system, it simply does not measure up the the capability and flexibility of the 70B architecture. It would be a shame, in my opinion, if Sikorsky relinquishes design and implementation of the S-70B cockpit design to Lockheeds Owego, NY facility where the 60R cockpit is produced. No one does mission systems design better than the folks at Sikorsky's main engineering and production facility in Stratford, CT. Anyone out there hear anything?
     
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  12. abingdonboy

    abingdonboy Senior Member Senior Member

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    Hi sir, good to hear from you again.


    From what I heard (a few weeks back) the delay is being caused by the LM takeover with Sikorsky but it is still on track. Let the new Financial year commence (April 1st) and I think we'll see some new deals signed, it's rather late in this FY now for deals to be clinched. The Apache and Chinook deals were signed in September 2015 but then they also had DAC clearance about 8 months before the S-70B deal and there wasn't this takeover disruption.
     
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  13. Rikbo88

    Rikbo88 Regular Member

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    Thanks for the reply @abingdonboy, good to hear from you too. Let's hope you're right.
     
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  14. Gessler

    Gessler Regular Member

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    That's right, there are currently two distinct NMRH requirements; a 10-ton class and a 12-ton class.

    As @abingdonboy says, there is a need for massive numbers of new multirole helicopters within IN. We need the 10-ton class choppers to be the mainstay naval helicopter, operating from frigates, corvettes, LHDs, carriers and shore-based airfields. The 12-tonners are most likely to be flying off the destroyers and LHDs.

    Once follow-up orders are placed, we would probably end up having anywhere between 44 to 60 Sikorsky S-70B-2 Sea Hawk multirole choppers. The number of 12-ton helos required is unclear, but expect a maximum of 32 as far as I can see. Competitors are most likely to be EC725 Caracal (now called Airbus H225M) and the Sikorsky CH-148 Cyclone.

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    And that's not even including the lighter Ka-226T or Bell 429-type helos that are also required in substantial numbers, well above 50 eventually. Too bad the indigenous LUH had to be a single-engined chopper, while the ALH Dhruv happens to be in a weight-class a level above what's required here.

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    Dhruvs themselves have so far accumulated IN orders of upto 24, more could come in future.

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  15. abingdonboy

    abingdonboy Senior Member Senior Member

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    For some reason, the IN is moving stupidly slowly where their rotary wing is concerned, it is theone area that is noticably lagging behind and lagging BADLY. I mean, 6-7,000 ton vessels going to sea with Chetaks, empty hangers or 35+ year old Sea Kings?? It's quite a shocking situation and I am really surprised the IN has allowed itself to get in this mess given how well they plan out their needs.

    Even this S-70B deal is for 24 helos (16+8) at MOST. In the 10 ton ASW role, there is a requirement for at least 80 units TODAY and by 2022 it wll be for 100+.

    In this day and age helos aren't an optional extra, they aren't a "nice to have" they are a VITAL part of the ship's capabilties, another sensor asset. It would be like going to sea without a main radar. Furthermore, when the IN is inducting $500 million USD ASW Corvettes, all of that high end capabilty is left under utilised because of a lack of a modern ASW helo.

    Man, this matter REALLY pi$$es me off, it's simply unacceptable and it's not just on the ASW front but the IN is still flying 40+ year old single engined Chetaks, in 2016!! UN-FREAKING-BELEIVABLE.


    For the 12 ton requirement a EC-725 vs CH-148 competition is surely the most likely scenerio (AW-101 could have been a contender but thanks to Antony AW have lost the Indian market) and this will be rather interesting because on one hand Sikorsky will already have their product (S-70B) in service with the IN, but the IN may select the Panther for their NLUH so Airbus could also. And whilst both sides have already said they will set up manufactuering plants in INdia for their birds, I think Airbus (as a group) has a more comprehensive plan for this- they have tied up with Mahindra for an "aerospace city" and Airbus have a tie up with TATA to make the C-295 in India. Anyway, it will be interesting to see that play out and whatever is selected will be an absolute beast and a great addtion to the IN.


    Oh also, by all accounts the EC-725 has been selected by the ICG for their medium class helo requirement so it would make a lot of sense for the IN to go for commonality with the ICG.

    The IN has no interest in the Ka-226T, Kamov aren't taking part in the NLUH- that is Mahindra (Aribus), Bell and Augusta Westland. I think the Airbus offer has the pest chance (Panther).

    The ALH will be ordered in the future but most likely will remain shore based SAR assets and maybe SAR helos for the LHD/Carriers.
     
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  16. Rikbo88

    Rikbo88 Regular Member

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    Very interesting! Sounds like a busy time coming up once financial issues are worked out. Too bad India does not hire foreign consultants, I could really help them with their 70B procurement. Would love to work the new weapons integration they are going to do on the 70B.
     
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  17. Gessler

    Gessler Regular Member

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    Fully agree about the pressing need for naval helos. The only logical explanation I can think of is that IN is seriously working some prioritization program and although some progress on selecting 10-ton NMRH (S-70B) has happened, apparently helos aren't on the top of that priority list, atleast for now.

    I'm surprised they haven't thought of building up an S-70B production line here...probably owing to us not making our intentions regarding the total projected requirements clear to the vendor to encourage local assembly/production. Tata Advanced Systems Ltd. (TASL) which produces cabins for the S-92 right now can easily handle the production of S-70B's major structural components locally given some expansion.

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    @Rikbo88 Sir, are you in the know regarding any plans for any Indian company becoming part of the S-70B international supply chain? Indian cos. are now producing components for quite a lot of US helos including the S-92 and CH-47F...the AH-64E and Bell 407GX could be added to this list in future.

    Goddamn I completely forgot the Panther! It's a shame no-one thought of modifying the Dhruv to being suitable for these roles. Nevertheless I must admit the Airbus-Mahindra plan for helo-production facilities appears sound...the market for Airbus helicopters in India is likely to be in the hundreds, including military and civilian needs. Local production can cash in on a lot of those deals.

    Hmm...I believe that's the requirement for 14 shore-based helos? Ofcourse the numbers would increase in future with successive batches. If Coast Guard has selected it already, it makes a lot of economic sense to go for a common fleet for the IN as well...but only as long as it doesn't mess with IN's original requirements. But given the chopper's capabilities and spec...I have no reason to doubt why it wouldn't meet IN's requirements...it most certainly will and end of the day, it comes down to the initial acquisition price + life-cycle cost calculations; this is where H225M stands to score some major points over the Cyclone AFAIK.

    This is also how I believe the S-70B-2 managed to triumph the NH-90 in the earlier requirement as well.

    Agreed. But again it's a shame HAL couldn't bring up something to compete here. They have offerings both a level below and a level above! This is what I mean missing the sweet spot!

    Search and Rescue :biggrin2:

    A lot of hopefuls might think you mean Synthetic Aperture Radar!

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  18. abingdonboy

    abingdonboy Senior Member Senior Member

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    That's no excuse really bro because the importance of these assets cannot be overstated. The IN is usually on top of their game but in this area they are more than a little disappointing- to say the least.

    To be honest, if the NMRH (10 ton) was started today it would be manadtory from day 1 to have them built in India and I bet the order would be >60 with at least a 20 follow on units clause.

    This 24 (16+8) deal has gone on so long it is almost redundant but at the same time it is the bottleneck as the IN can't start exercising addtional orders to meet the NMRH requirement until this rather small deal is cleared.

    That's right, 14 for the ICG.

    And the H225M is so versitile it should easily be configurable for anything the IN or ICG need.

    I've said it before (in other threads) if the Indian Mil/MoD was smart they would place a joint order for 200+ H225M to be made in India ASAP. All the branches have a requirement for a 12 ton medium class helo:

    IA- 150 (Airbus Mil said itself it is pitching for this)
    IAF- dedicated CSAR bird (at least 30)
    ICG- 30
    IN- 50 easily

    instead all 4 will pursure their own independant procurements and some may select the same bird but one of them might opt for something entirely different and thus lose out on massivebenefits from commonailty .
    Search and Rescue boys, sorry.

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    INAS 322 "The Guardians"
     
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  19. Rushil51

    Rushil51 Regular Member

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    Why is there a need for 2 different class of helicopters for the (if I am not wrong) same role?
     
  20. abingdonboy

    abingdonboy Senior Member Senior Member

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    12 ton helos are too big and heavy to operate off most ships in the IN other than destroyers, carriers, FSS and LHD and hence the 10 ton NMRH (which have the same footprint as the Sea Kings) is needed too as most warships in the IN can operate them.
     

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