Indian Army Aviation Wing

WolfPack86

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Army to get indigenous light helicopters by Dec. 2022
The Army, which is facing a huge shortage of light utility helicopters with the ageing fleet of Cheetah and Chetak helicopters, will receive the first batch of six indigenous Light Utility helicopter (LUH) by the end of 2022, a defence source said. The LUH was designed and developed by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL).

In a separate development, Lt. Gen. Ajay Kumar Suri took over as the Director General (DG) and Colonel Commandant of the Army Aviation on Monday.

“The acceptance in principle was received two months back. The Army will receive the first batch of six LUHs by December 2022,” the source stated. The LUH is meant to replace the ageing Cheetah and Chetak helicopters along with the Russian Ka-226T helicopters.

At Aero India in Bengaluru in February, the Army variant of the LUH received its Initial Operational Clearance (IOC).

New DG
Since November 2019, Lt. Gen. Suri, then as a Major General, was the Additional Director General and officiating as the DG, Army Aviation. He was commissioned into the Army in June 1985 as an artillery officer and was awarded wings to fly a combat helicopter in June 1990 and transferred to the permanent cadre of the Army Aviation in February 1999. He is the 5th Director General and 13th Colonel Commandant of the Army Aviation Corps.

Lt. Gen. Suri has over 6000 hours of total service flying. He has flown all types of helicopters in the Army’s fleet. He also served as Air Operations officer at the United Nations peace keeping mission in Sierra Leone.

The LUH is a 3-ton class helicopter with glass cockpit for reconnaissance and surveillance roles and as a light transport helicopter. It has been extensively test-flown at various geographic conditions, including high altitude.

Following the IOC, HAL has moved to the next phase of integrating and flight-testing of mission and role equipment on the LUH. There is a tentative order of 200 LUH from the Army and the Air Force.
 

WolfPack86

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HAL to supply 12 light utility helicopters to armed forces
Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. (HAL) has received the Letter of Intent from the Services for the manufacture of 12 Light Utility Helicopters (LUH), which have been designed and developed indigenously. At the same time, nine Light Combat Helicopters (LCH) have been manufactured against the sanction of 15 limited series production (LSP) variants and are in the process of being handed over to the Services.

In another development, the Army is in negotiations for acquiring 11 more Apache AH-64E attack helicopters from the U.S.

“Production work has begun. Two LUH are in an advanced stage of completion,” a HAL source confirmed to The Hindu.

In addition, the Request For Quotation (RFQ) for the larger order for LUH RFQ has also been issued, one source stated.

HAL is in the process of responding to the RFQ and expects to conclude the related issues in one or two years, the source stated. Last November, the Defence Acquisition Council approved the procurement of an initial lot of 12 LUH, six each for the Army and the Air Force.

LCH induction

In June, the Army raised its first LCH squadron in Bengaluru which will move to the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Eastern Command once complete next year. “Of the 15 LSP on order, nine LCH have been produced. They are in acceptance stage,” HAL sources said.

As of now the Army is looking at acquiring around 111 LUH and 95 LCH, officials stated. Army sources had said that seven LCH units are planned for combat role in the mountains, with each having 10 helicopters. The IAF is also scheduled to raise its first LCH squadron in the next few months.

More Apache attack helicopters

The Cabinet Committee on Security had earlier given sanction for the procurement of 39 AH-64 Apache attack helicopters from the U.S.. Following this, IAF had inducted 22 Apaches procured under a deal signed in September 2015. The government had ruled that any further Apache procurements would go to the Army. In line with this, India signed a deal for six more Apaches at a cost of around $800 million in February 2020.

Deliveries which were to begin in the first half of 2023 have been delayed by around 10 months due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a defence official said. They are now scheduled to arrive in early 2024, an Army source said.

In addition, the Army is pushing the case for the remaining 11 Apaches of the 39 sanctioned, the official added. A senior official of aircraft manufacturer Boeing had recently confirmed that they were in talks with the Indian Army for additional Apaches.

The Army has three Aviation Brigades at Leh, Missamari and Jodhpur. It operates around 145 indigenous Advanced Light Helicopters (ALH), 75 of which are the Rudra-weaponised variants. Another 25 ALH Mk-III are on order and scheduled to be inducted within two years. The Army operates around 190 Cheetah, Chetak and Cheetal helicopters and are in dire need of their replacement, while the IAF operates close to 140 of them.

In all, the IAF operates a wide mix of around 500 rotary platforms which includes around 90 Mi-17s, over 130 Mi-17V5s, over 70 ALH, including the weaponised variants, 22 Apaches, one squadron of Mi-35 attack helicopters and 15 CH-47F Chinook heavy lift helicopters.

In the utility helicopter category, the Army and the IAF together have a requirement of more than 400 helicopters and are meant to replace the vintage Cheetah and Chetak helicopters in service. This requirement was to be met jointly by the LUH and the 200 Ka-226T utility helicopters to be built with technology transfer from Russia.

However, the Ka-226T deal has been delayed by several years over indigenisation issues and with the LUH now ready and the geopolitical situation due to the war in Ukraine, the deal is all set to be dropped, officials had stated. The LUH has come up well, but will take time for sufficient numbers to come in, Army sources had stated.
 

WolfPack86

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Indian army inducted light combat helicopter







Anti-tank missile completes all trials
The helicopter-launched Nag Anti-Tank Guided Missile (ATGM), Helina, being developed indigenously, has completed all trials and the process for issuing of Acceptance of Necessity (AoN) by the Army has started, said Dr. Sachin Sood, Project Director of Helina and Dhruvastra at the Defence Research and Development Laboratory (DRDL) Hyderabad, a laboratory of the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO).

“The launcher and missile are ready. There are some Human Machine Interface (HMI) to be realised which are going on now,” Dr. Sood told The Hindu . While the cost estimate is yet to be done, each missile is expected to cost under ₹1 crore and initially around 500 missiles and 40 launchers will be required, he says.

Once the AoN is issued, the Request for Proposal (RFP) will be issued. Some firing trials will be done from the first production lot by the Army at a later stage.

Helina is a third generation fire and forget class ATGM mounted on an indigenous Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH) and has a minimum range of 500 m and a maximum range of 7 km. All issues with the minimum range have been sorted out and the integration with other weapons on the platform is over, according to Dr. Sood.

Stating that the Air Force had asked for feasibility of integrating the Helina on the soon-to-be inducted Light Combat Helicopter (LCH), Dr. Sood said this would be done and would bring in economies of scale in the production of the missile. “There is also very good export potential,” he said.

For that the platforms on which it can be integrated have to be identified. The possibilities of exports were discussed with the Secretary, Defence Production as well when he visited the India pavilion at the Army-2021 expo in Moscow last month.

Live firing
Talking of the trials in February during which live firing was carried out, Dr. Sood said that for the first time firing from maximum forward speed from a moving target, an ALH, was demonstrated as also targeting from a top angle. “Final configuration with warhead demonstrated good penetration into the target. Other operational missions like minimum range were also demonstrated,” he said on the trials.

All the capabilities of the seeker, a critical part of the missile, were checked and cleared. In one mission the target was acquired at a range of 7 km and was fired on at 6 km range, he said. During these trails the stability of the platform and the separation of the missile from it had also been demonstrated.

On the difference between Nag ATGM of the Army and Helina, which is air-launched, Dr. Sood said they had different firing mechanisms as the latter had increased range. “It is a fire and forget missile. Once the Electro-Optic (EO) system of ALH identifies the target, it automatically hands over target to the missile. It is lock-on before launch,” he explained.

While the missile was developed by the DRDO, the integration on ALH was done by the Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) and the Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL) is the production agency. During the last trial, BDL teams were involved and their teams were now being trained, Dr. Sood said.

Private industry
Majority of the missile is indigenous with significant sourcing from the private industry. For instance, the launcher, rocket motors and onboard power supply on the missile are manufactured by Hyderabad-based companies, propulsion by the Ordnance Factory Bhandara, control system by the Research Centre Imarat, warhead jointly by the Armament Research and Development Establishment (ARDE) and the Ordnance Factory Board and seeker by the Bharat Electronics Limited, Machilipatnam, and BDL. “The supply chain has been established,” Dr. Sood said.

Parallelly, an Air Force version Dhruvastra was also under development for which some trials had already been conducted. It would have an Air to Ground role other than anti-tank role, Dr. Sood added.
 

brat4

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waiting for the above pics to show up in the peepee pharom.. and there will be immediate comparisons with chinki z10.. free research for comparison
 

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