Posts Tagged 'Defence'

Shahid Kapoor flies F-16 at Aero India show

Bangalore: Bollywood actor Shahid Kapoor, who is playing the role of a combat aircraft pilot in his upcoming film ‘Mausam’, was thrilled to fly in a Lockheed Martin F-16 fighter aircraft at the Aero India show here.
“I am very keen to get into F-16 as a co-pilot. I thank IAF and also Lockheed Martin for giving me this opportunity,” Shahid told reporters ahead of his flying venture today.
The 29-year-old actor had to undergo one month’s rigorous training and pass required tests before flying the combat aircraft.
12/02/11 Shahid Kapoor/Indian Express

DRDO’s high dreams dashed

DRDO’s showpiece at Aero India – Aerostat, a surveillance balloon – was not allowed to ‘fly high’ at the show as the Air Traffic Controller (ATC) had denied it permission.
Other than India, only two other countries – the US and Israel – have it. The Aerostat rose to a height of 40 metres only twice at the show (only for half an hour) – once before the defence minister’s visit and once before the mediapersons.
An official from the aerial delivery research & development establishment of Defence Research and Development Organisation said, “We have kept it (the Aerostat) at winch level (ground level) since beginning of the show. We always wanted to keep it flying. But denial of permission by ATC was a dampener.”
The ATC, however, said it had denied permission as a safety measure as the Aerostat would hamper the movement of flights.
An Aerostat can remain stationary in the air and it is tethered to the ground through an electro-optic wire. An official said while a micro UAV (unmanned aerial vehicle) does surveillance work, it can’t fly for a longer time. However, an Aerostat can fly continuously for seven days.
13/02/11 Sameer Ranjan Bakshi/Bangalore Mirror

Bangalore student beats 2,400 to fly Gripen

Bangalore: A 22-year-old student from Bangalore-based BMS Engineering College will today be doing one thing that most of us can’t even dream of—fly a fighter jet.
A mechanical engineering student, Shashank HR outplayed 2,400 contestants to win the Gripen Top Guns contest, which would offer him a chance to fly the Gripen fighter jet.
On Saturday, five of the 2,400 took the final test: they were made to fly the Gripen flight simulator to choose the ‘top gun’. And Shashank emerged as the winner. Shashank had the habit of flying planes on his home computer and he said that made his task easy during the simulation trials. Buoyed up with this win, he says, after his engineering course get over, he would join “an Indian public sector undertaking which is engaged in aerospace activities”.
On Sunday, Shashank will co-pilot the Gripen — one of the contenders for the Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA) — for an hour.
13/02/11 Hemanth CS/Daily News & Analysis

India and Russia have finalised the Russian PAKFA aircraft

Sukhoi-T50 fighter aircraftA Sukhoi-T50 fighter aircraft, the Russian PAKFA aircraft has been finalized by India and Russia as the base design model for their $6 billion Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft (FGFA) programme.
This deal does not indicate that India’s prospects of joining American F-35 fifth generation fighter programme come to an end. India has to select 126 Medium weight Multi Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCAs) with a budget of $10 billion.
This is the costliest deal of Indian defense system till date and Americans who have come to Aero India 2011 were little confused with Boeing’s F/A 18 Super Hornet and Lockheed Martin’s F-16 IN Super Viper and is considering which one of the two will seal the deal. Air Chief PV Naik is expecting to close the deal by September this year.
12/02/11 Mitra Pathak/

Is India flying back into Russia’s arms?

Bangalore: India and Russia have finalised the Russian PAKFA aircraft —a Sukhoi-T50 fighter aircraft — as the base design model for their $6 billion Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft (FGFA) programme. This has not just dealt a death-knell to any prospects of India joining the American F-35 fifth generation fighter programme, but also indicates the nature of things to come on India’s final selection of the $10 billion deal to procure 126 Medium weight Multi Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCAs).
And it does not appear bright for the Americans who have come to Aero India 2011 with Boeing’s F/A 18 Super Hornet and Lockheed Martin’s F-16 IN Super Viper – seriously considered as the two of which one would finally clinch the costliest Indian defence deal till date, which, according to Air Chief PV Naik, would be signed by September this year.
Globally, defence experts and critics are reading too much into the absence of MiG-35 at Aero India 2011 from which it pulled out just a week ahead of the commencement of the event on February 9.
But the Russian delegations visiting Aero India 2011 in Bangalore have confirmed that though their contender for the MMRCA deal, MiG-35, was the only one from the six contenders to have pulled out from the air show, the MMRCA selection committee members as well as defence experts were witness to a series of demonstrations by MiG-35 which also carried out extreme manoeuvres in Indian as well as Russian conditions. Sources said the aerial manoeuvres demonstrated also involved “some which would not have been allowed to be carried out at any of the air shows” and that the Indian side were “thoroughly impressed”.
12/02/11 Nirad Mudur/Daily News & Analysis

Indian deal hot topic at record breaking AeroIndia

Bangalore: The eighth AeroIndia air show here has broken all records for the number of visitors, with over 1.75 lakh footfalls recorded till Friday.
The focus of attention remained on the biggest tender India has floated to buy 126 medium multi-role combat aircraft (MMRCA).
The contract is expected to be awarded to one of the six contenders by September this year, according to officials.
“The MMRCA is the primary focus. With the orders likely soon, what will happen in the next edition in 2013, I wonder,” said Guy Douglas from BAE Systems India.
The increase in the number of aircraft manufacturers and air forces participating in the show this year indicates the increasing interest in AeroIndia, he added.
The first three days of the five-day air show, which opened Wednesday at the Yelahanka air base, were all about business.
But the show will be open for the general public to visit the flying and static display during Saturday and Sunday.
A large number of aviators and enthusiasts have gathered here to watch the spell-binding manoeuvres such as sharp turns, rolls and spins by fighter jets from all major global manufacturers, including US Lockheed Martin’s F-16s, Boeing’s F/A-18s, Saab’s Gripen and the Dassault’s Rafale.
These are part of the 95 military aircraft lined up in the static display area.
11/02/11 IANS/The Hindu

Lockheed denies media reports, says F-22 not joining final day of Aero India 2011

tealth fighter F-22, the United States fifth-generation aircraft, is not coming to participate in the final day’s air show during Aero India 2011 being held at the Yelahanka Air Force station in Bangalore.
F-22 Raptor’s manufacturer Lockheed Martin has said the fighter aircraft is not coming for the Aero India 2011 that began on Wednesday.
A company spokesperson denied that the F-22 neither be flying nor be showcased as a static display.
“F-22 is not coming to India. At the best of my knowledge it will not be showcased on the last day of Aero India,” said Jack Giese of Lockheed Martin communication team.
According to the report emerging in media two F-22s were set to make its debut during Aero India 2011 in Bangalore. A Chinese news agency quoted an official from the Indian Defense Ministry as confirming that F-22 was likely to appear at the air show. F-22 is not only the US most advanced stealth fighter with the radar cross section of merely a steel marble, also the most advanced stealth fighter in the world.
It entered the US Air Force service in December 2005, and it could carry out the tasks of air- to-air and air-to-ground attacks with the precision-guided weapons.
11/02/11 ANI/Sify

Eurofighter anticipating partnership with India

The Eurofighter Partner Companies are now eagerly looking to partner with India with the aim to produce and develop the world’s most advanced swing-role combat aircraft.
During the Aero India 2011, the biennial Air Show organised by the Indian Ministry of Defence, Bernhard Gerwert, CEO of Cassidian Air Systems and Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Eurofighter GmbH, explained details of the industrial partnership offer and the intention to integrate India as a partner in the Eurofighter programme.
With an ambitious industrialization strategy the major plan is to plug India as an industrial partner, the Eurofighter Consortium is seeking to develop and produce future upgrades and enhancements, new sub-systems, software, etc. in collaboration with India.
11/02/11 Duica Karljikovic/e Yugoslavia

Naveen Jindal flies French Rafael at Bangalore’s Aero India show

Bangalore: Lok Sabha MP Naveen Jindal took to the skies as he co-piloted Dassault’s Rafael fighter aircraft on the third day of the Aero India 2011 show here.
Jindal, who holds a commercial pilot’s license, said that the fighter plane went upto 50,000 feet high.
“It was an amazing experience for me and when the aircraft takes off the amount of thrust and speed that you feel its like you can not feel anywhere. It feels like a rocket or like a bullet that has been fired. So, that’s the most amazing feeling,” said Jindal.
Jindal is the third celebrity to fly a combat aircraft during the air show.
Indian ace shooter and Olympic gold medalist Abhinav Bindra flew fighter jet F-16 Super Viper of the US aerospace major Lockheed Martin Thursday, while India’s only cosmonaut Wing Commander (retd) Rakesh Sharma co-piloted Super Hornet on Friday.
Ace Indian cricketer Rahul Dravid also visited the air show and was seen enjoying the fighter jets at the show.
12/02/11 ANI/

Eurocopter vying for deals worth €10-15 billion

Bangalore : Eurocopter, a division of aerospace and defence company EADS, is looking at projects worth €10-15 billion (around Rs60,000-90,000 crore) over the next five years, with India being the largest market for military helicopters in Asia.
The Indian Air Force (IAF) is set to replace its entire fleet of over 600 Cheetah-Chetak helicopters, which Eurocopter had jointly produced with HAL.
The helicopter major is bidding for the order of 197 reconnaissance and surveillance helicopters that Indian government plans to procure. For this, Eurocopter showcased the best in its breed of helicopter — the AS550 Fennec. The military-certified and combat-proven AS550 C3 Fennec has exceptional performance at high altitude and in hot weather conditions.
“The field trials with full mission equipment were completed flawlessly.It is a fully certified and a reference helicopter across the world that has been sold in many countries, underlining its capabilities. It is a huge order and we are sparing no resources in this campaign (reconnaissance and surveillance helicopters),” said Norbert Ducrot, senior VP, Eurocopter.
Eurocopter is also eyeing other major projects in India, including cooperation with HAL on co-developing and co-producing a 10-12 tonne helicopter specially designed to address the needs of all the armed forces.
Eurocopter will offer the AS365 naval Panther for the tender to the Navy and Coast Guard. Panther is the military version of the civilian Dauphin, which has been very well received in the Indian market.
12/02/11 Supriya Ghorpade/Daily News & Analysis

India will fear no one from next year

Bangalore: Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) chief VK Saraswat said on Friday all sub-systems of the country’s first indigenous subsonic medium-range cruise missile Nirbhay (fearless) were almost in place and it would be ready by early next year.
Speaking at Aero India-2011, he said: “Integration of the engine is under way.”
The missile with a range of 1,000 km can take to the skies from multiple launchers and will arm all the three services. Nirbhay is expected to supplement the 300-km-range supersonic BrahMos.
Saraswat said an advanced version of BrahMos would be ready by 2012. The technology of the hypersonic missile call-ed BrahMos Mark-2 or BrahMos-2 was successfully lab-tested in May 2008 at a speed of 6.5 mach. The hypersonic demonstrator vehicle will attain a level flight for a ground-to-ground test at a height of 30 km before it hits the target with a speed between seven and eight mach. The mach-8 Brahmos-2, an advanced version of the present air-launched missile, will be the country’s first hypersonic cruise missile. DRDO and Russian NPO-Mash are working on a sustained flight scramjet, which will be the core element of the Mark-2 version.About a ballistic missile defence shield, Saraswat said the next AAD (advanced air defence) test will take place this month.
12/02/11 Suman Sharma/Daily News & Analysis

Indian Army takes delivery of more powerful Dhruvs

Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) officially handed over to the Indian Army Aviation Corps (AAC) the first Dhruv Advanced Light Helicopters (ALH) powered by Shakti engines at Aero India in Bangalore on 10 February.
At a handover ceremony, Maj Gen P. K. Bharali, the additional director general of army aviation, received the first five of the twin-engine craft.
The Dhruv Mk.III is different from its predecessors by being powered by the new Shakti turboshaft engine co-developed by Turbomeca and HAL.
However, this is not the only change in the ALH. Dr. Prasad Sampath, general manager of HAL’s Rotary Wing Research and Design Centre, traced the progression of the Dhruv: ‘The Mk.I, powered by Turbomeca TM 333 2B2 engines, featured a conventional cockpit and minimal vibration control, while the Mk.II that appeared in 2007 had a glass cockpit and first-generation active vibration control. The latest Mk.III features second-generation active vibration control, Shakti engines and additions to the cockpit displays.’
Shakti engines mate a HAL gearbox and 1,032kW Turbomeca engine. The latest Dhruv Mk.III can carry a 200kg payload at an altitude of 6,000m. This compares with a payload of just 50-100kg for the incumbent 825kW engine. A high-altitude capacity is a critical requirement for the Indian Army.
11/02/11 Shephard

MMRCA deal: EADS ups ante

Bengaluru: Defence minister A K Antony has announced his intentions to stave off political pressure from countries in race for the $11.5 billion medium multi-role combat aircraft (MMRCA) contract, but one European consortium believes in flaunting its political connections along with technological superiority to clinch the deal.
The defence ministers of Germany and United Kingdom visited the pavilion of EADS at Aero India 2011 along with air force chiefs and diplomats, a move described by Yves Guillaume, Chief Executive Officer-EADS (India) as “show of unity” in support of Eurofighter Typhoon, one of the six contenders for the mega bucks acquisition. “We know it is always a combination of choice of technology and political decisions that guide such purchases, not only for Eurofighter but others”, he told Deccan Chronicle.
11/02/11 Deccan Chronicle

American aggressive at the show

Bangalore: India’s new strategic relationship with the US following the nuclear deal is all too visible at Aero India. The US has had by far the most aggressive presence at the show.
Some 41 US companies are exhibitors, and many of those exhibits are on a significant scale. What’s more, a number of very senior officials from the US government and military participated in the show. Among these were commerce secretary Gary Locke, US ambassador to India Timothy Roemer, assistant secretary of state for political-military affairs Andrew Shapiro, vice admiral Bill Landay, commander of the Pacific air forces Gary North, rear admiral Joseph Rixey and Heidi Grant, deputy under secretary of the air force.
Dinesh Keskar, president of Boeing India, noted the support extended by US officials, and said that India was far more open for defence than China was. Walter Doran, president-Asia of Raytheon, said the show of US commitment was incredible.
12/02/11 Times of India

Juhu lad may fly fighter plane

Mumbai: For 21-year-old Juhu resident Shaival Rajiv Sheth, aviation has always been a passion, but he has never been anywhere close to even dreaming of flying a fighter jet.
This youth’s wildest dream might come true tomorrow at the Bangalore Aero India 2011, provided he is able to pass one last test today.
In the final test today before a panel of expert judges, Sheth will have to flawlessly fly a virtual plane in a simulation cockpit.
“Every button, every lever, every switch and even the experience will be exactly like the actual thing. It’s like flying the plane without ever taking off the ground,” he said.
Sheth is one of the five finalists from among over 5,000 contestants across India who entered the competition, by answering a set of questions and playing a flight simulation game online.
“I’m a diehard aviation fan and wanted to join the National Defence Academy when I was a boy, but was unable to do so.
12/02/11 Otiena Ellwand/MiD DAY

Cruise missile Nirbhay will be ready in 2012

Bangalore: The country’s first indigenous subsonic cruise missile, Nirbhay (Fearless), will be ready early next year.
“The integration of the engine is under way. All processes are on for the sub-sonic medium-range cruise missile,” said Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) chief VK Saraswat at the air show.
The missile with a range of 1,000km can be launched from multiple launchers. It will arm all the three services.Nirbhay is expected to supplement the BrahMos cruise missile, which has a range of 300km.
About the hypersonic cruise missile, a more advanced version of the BrahMos, Dr Saraswat said it also would be ready by 2012. A successful test of the technology of the missile was carried out in a laboratory in May 2008 at a speed of 6.5 Mach. The hypersonic demonstrator vehicle will attain a level flight, for a ground-to-ground test, at a height of 30 km from the ground, before it hits the target with a speed between seven and eight Mach.
The hypersonic missile BrahMos-2 will be the Mach 8 version of the missile. It will be the country’s first hypersonic cruise missile. It is an advanced version of the present air-launched missile.
DRDO and NPO-Mash are working on a sustained flight scramjet, which will be the core element in the Mark-2 version of BrahMos.
12/02/11 Suman Sharma/Daily News & Analysis

Hindustan Aeronautics Limited to give wing to 1,500 copters

Bangalore: Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) will be designing, developing and manufacturing 1,500 helicopters in the next decade.
HAL finance director D Shivamurti said on Thursday that of the 1,500 choppers to be developed by the Bangalore-headquartered public sector undertaking, 100 would be Advanced Light Helicopters, 300 would be Light Utility Helicopters and the remaining would be multi-role helicopters of the 10-12 tonne class.
Besides, HAL will be investing about Rs20,000 crore over the next 10 years to modernise and expand its capacity to execute orders valued at Rs1,00,000 crore.
Shivamurti added that HAL has Rs9,000 crore in reserves.
To a query, he said HAL is awaiting government approval to go public and raise funds. “Being a fully-owned state-run enterprise, it is for the government to decide,” he said. The Intermediate Jet Trainer (IJT) would be given the Initial Operational Clearance by June enabling the Indian Air Force to test the aircraft. The IJT is expected to replace the HJT-16 Kiran in its role as a stage II trainer in the air force.
11/02/11 Hemanth CS/Daily News & Analysis

U.S. most advanced stealth fighter F-22 likely to join final day’s air show in India

Bangalore:  The U.S. most sophisticated stealth fighter F-22 will arrive here to participate in the final day’s air show, said a U.S. aeronautical official on Friday.
The U.S. will only dispatch one F-22 to fly to India for the air show Aero India 2011 that began on Wednesday, and the F-22 will be only showcased as a static display instead of flying display, said the official, who was participating in the air show as a member of a U.S aeronautical team.
According to the report by the Indian newspaper Indian Express before the air show, two F-22s were set to make its debut during Aero India 2011 in Bangalore. An official from the Indian Defense Ministry confirmed F-22 was likely to appear at the air show.
F-22 is not only the U.S. most advanced stealth fighter with the radar cross section of merely a steel marble, also the most advanced stealth fighter in the world. It entered the U.S. Air Force service in Dec,2005, and it could carry out the tasks of air- to-air and air-to-ground attacks with the precision-guided weapons.

Dogfight over $10b fighter deal

It’s the biggest fighter jet import order in a long time, and for a long time. It’s the deal the world’s great military-industrial powers have been waiting to clinch — the Indian Air Force’s Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA) purchase that could fetch the deal winner over $ 10 billion. And with Air Chief Marshal P.V. Naik saying he expected India to have signed off on the deal by September, the dogfight between the contenders is intensifying.
Signs of that intensification were more than apparent during the Aero India show at the Yelahanka Air Force Station on Thursday, with some of the contenders — Lockheed Martin (F-16IN), Boeing (F/A-18), EADS (Eurofighter Typhoon), the French Dassault (Rafale), SAAB (Gripen) — making light or dismissing outright competitors.
Officials of the European contenders mocked Lockheed Martin’s apparently recent bid to let the F-35 Fifth Generation fighter among the contending Fourth Generation fighters, saying that it was a sign of the F-16IN losing altitude in the contest.
Lockheed Martin officials, in turn, seemed to be dismissing fellow US giant Boeing’s bid to win the contract for its F/A-18 Super Hornet by dangling a ‘roadmap of future development’ of the aircraft that would give it Fifth Generation characteristics and keep the jet relevant for the next several decades.
Asked about concerns over America’s willingness to transfer technology, Mr. Prins said, “The IAF’s request for proposal stipulated technology transfer in five categories in four phases. Our proposal is fully compliant.
11/02/11 Deccan Chroniclehte

Saab steps up game with tech offer

The Swedish defence and aviation major Saab is ready for a complete and total transfer of technology to India through its partnerships with the local private sector companies.
This was stated by Saab AB’s senior vice president and head of industrial co-operation Mr Andreas Von Der Heide at the Aero India International Conference earlier this week.
Mr Von der Heide said that the Saab approach will be to provide technological and knowledge exchange supporting India’s ambition to be an independent player within the defence technology market, with special focus on aerospace technology.
Saab will provide guaranteed full access to Saab’s technology on all levels and form long-term partnerships with local industry. Towards this, the company is proposing to build a centre of excellence for net-centric warfare and the development of mission-critical applications and C4I solutions. The company is currently investigating possibilities to locate a R&D centre to India in partnership with Indian universities.
“Our commitment is always long-term and focusing on creating business opportunities that go beyond traditional offset obligations. These include spin-outs and joint ventures together with partners, product development programmes in close co-operation with local industry, establishing Saab companies on local markets and supporting social programmes on local markets,” said Mr Von der Heide.
11/02/11 Deccan Chronicle

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