LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby Bob V » 29 Sep 2011 08:33

Do the Mi-17V5s have a radar built onto the nose ?

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby koti » 29 Sep 2011 10:33

No sir.
None of the mi-17 have any radar.
Newer birds have terrain sensors none the less.

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby Austin » 29 Sep 2011 13:00

Bob V wrote:Do the Mi-17V5s have a radar built onto the nose ?


Most choppers if they ever carry a radar carry navigational/weather radar.

http://www.defenseindustrydaily.com/ind ... ers-02755/

The $310 million worth of upgrades under the reported deal will be carried out on 46 Mi-8, 78 Mi-17 and 48 Mi-171V helicopters to add instrument landing system radars, very high-frequency omni-directional range radars, an advanced weather radar and a digital moving map display. The Mi-17s will also receive Bharat Electronics Tarang 1B radar warning receivers, and missile approach warning systems.

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby Singha » 29 Sep 2011 13:11

will finally make them capable of adverse weather and night ops with much higher margin of safety. stuff like this comes as std kit probably in US army helis, for us its always some afterthought. basic stuff to carry on a war 24x7 basis.

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby rohitvats » 29 Sep 2011 14:52

^^^All these bells and whistles become extremely important if you consider our terrain and weather problem in the North-East and North India. Them mountains are extremely trecherous and weather tends to pack up at short notice.

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby Surya » 29 Sep 2011 16:22

need wire cutters on all our helos

with our penchant for stringing wires and cables wherever we feel like - ingress and egress in SHBO ops is a nail biting affair

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby Bob V » 29 Sep 2011 17:16

I reason why I asked is I saw a pic of the bird, with a modified nose section (most likely a weather radar). I don't know if it is meant for us or a prototype.

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby VinodTK » 01 Oct 2011 04:15

Russian helicopters arrive in India
The first batch of the Russian Mil Mi-17B5 helicopters has arrived at an air base in the Indian northwestern state of Punjab.

For years, India’s air forces have been using Russian Mil Mi-17 helicopters in the conditions of rough mountain terrain in the states of Ladakh, Arunachal Pradesh and Himachal Pradesh.

The recent batch consists of upgraded versions of the helicopter to be used for the transportation of troops and military vehicles and for rescue and emergency operations.

The contract for the supply of 80 helicopters worth $1,354bln was clinched in 2008.

All assembly work and checks will be performed by Russian experts accompanying the cargo.

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby Pratik_S » 02 Oct 2011 16:33


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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby shiv » 02 Oct 2011 20:51



Interesting. It is spelt Rudhra here. Rudra has a soft "dh" and not a hard "ddh", or its a southie spelling like "Karthik" versus "Kartik"

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby krishnan » 02 Oct 2011 21:24

Yeah..but maybe we are reading too much in this spelling

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby shiv » 02 Oct 2011 22:07

krishnan wrote:Yeah..but maybe we are reading too much in this spelling


Probably. English is a lousy language for Indian names and words. Too much ambiguity.

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby merlin » 03 Oct 2011 11:51

shiv wrote:


Interesting. It is spelt Rudhra here. Rudra has a soft "dh" and not a hard "ddh", or its a southie spelling like "Karthik" versus "Kartik"


In South they always add an h, like the example you gave, Karthik instead of Kartik, Latha instead of Lata, etc. But as you said, spellings of Indian names in English always looks a little weird.

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby pragnya » 06 Oct 2011 09:11

Image

Image

Bangalore. The armed version of India’s Dhruv Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH) touched 20,000 feet in a test flight early August while two Cheetals performed a daring rescue at 23,000 feet a few weeks later.

The ALH test flight was conducted by Army’s ace test pilot Brig Amardeep Sidhu in Leh while the two Cheetals were taken to this height by ace pilots of the Indian Air Force (IAF) to rescue a stranded foreign mountaineer.

The armed version of the ALH, designated Rudra by the Army Aviation Corps which operates them, is still under various tests before its induction by end-2011. But so far, according to Chairman and Managing Ashok Nayak of HAL, which manufactures the helicopter at its Bangalore facility, all the required tests, undertaken step by step, have been successful.

Rudra has also cleared the airto- air and air-to-ground missile firing tests at the Interim Test Range at Balasore in Orissa and now, combined missile, rocket and gun firing tests, day and night, would be conducted later this year. Pilots also have Helmet mounted cueing systems to ensure precision attacks.

Notably, Rudra is powered by the new Shakti engine developed by HAL and the French Turbomeca, which should be a standard fitting in all versions of the ALH, including the high altitude attack helicopter now called LCH or Light Combat helicopter, Mr Nayak told India Strategic in an interview.


But Shakti is the engine of today, Mr Nayak said adding that Turbomeca had done all the required Transfer of Technology (ToT) for its manufacture by HAL. The utility version is however still on the drawing board but should not take long to develop as its various components would be the same as those successfully tested on ALH variants. Its engine is also under the selection process.

Mr Nayak said that Phase I of the Shakti engine’s TOT was over, and the remaining three phases would be completed in about two years and then the infrastructure to manufacture it fully in India would be established. Significantly, he pointed out, the critical engine core technology had already been transferred.


It may be noted that Rudra, or ALHWSI (Weapon Systems Integrated) is coming in two versions. The Mark III, which Brig Sidhu took to the new heights, has Electronic Warfare and Targeting Systems while the Mark IV would have a French Nexter 20 mm turret gun, Belgian 70 mm rockets, and MBDA air to air and air to ground missiles. All these systems have been tested individually.


Two prototypes of the LCH have done about 100 hours, flown by Group Captain Unni Pillai, a retired IAF test pilot, who is the Chief Test Pilot for HAL now.


Mr Nayak said that a 3rd prototype of the LCH is under development, and that it should be inducted by the IAF in about three to four years.


ALH touches 20,000 feet and Cheetal 23,000

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby ranjithnath » 06 Oct 2011 09:36

Mr Nayak said that Phase I of the Shakti engine’s TOT was over, and the remaining three phases would be completed in about two years and then the infrastructure to manufacture it fully in India would be established. Significantly, he pointed out, the critical engine core technology had already been transferred.

it seems significant TOT.why cant we modify shakthi to suit LOH without turbomeca??

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby Singha » 06 Oct 2011 09:50

likely because modification is not as simple as it sounds (we have never done a greenfield turboshaft before) and having the OEM onboard will reduce risk and ensure timely delivery of a safe product. french will tell us how to make the core and sell us the tools and metals if needed to do so, but they would never tell us what happens if the core temp increase by 100C or shape of the core chamber changed by 10cm or fuel inflow increased by 5% - such design secrets are never transferred.

the other approach is go it alone using shakti as a base - thats the chini approach - maybe it will pay in long run. but as we know the WS10x is struggling to have a lifetime of 100 hrs while its 'blood father' the AL31F goes 1000s of hrs :mrgreen: and this after many years of cloning and playing around! what kind of safety it will have is also a open question as we can see in the bullet train cloning episode.

in the end the IAF unlike the PLAAF will not have a unsafe and immature product shoved down their throat nor they will accept timeline slippage beyond a point.

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby Drishyaman » 06 Oct 2011 10:31

The cockpit is a visual delight. Thanks for sharing.

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby ranjithnath » 06 Oct 2011 12:26

Singha wrote:likely because modification is not as simple as it sounds (we have never done a greenfield turboshaft before) and having the OEM onboard will reduce risk and ensure timely delivery of a safe product. french will tell us how to make the core and sell us the tools and metals if needed to do so, but they would never tell us what happens if the core temp increase by 100C or shape of the core chamber changed by 10cm or fuel inflow increased by 5% - such design secrets are never transferred.

the other approach is go it alone using shakti as a base - thats the chini approach - maybe it will pay in long run. but as we know the WS10x is struggling to have a lifetime of 100 hrs while its 'blood father' the AL31F goes 1000s of hrs :mrgreen: and this after many years of cloning and playing around! what kind of safety it will have is also a open question as we can see in the bullet train cloning episode.

guess doing a WS 10 like thing or modifying it without OEM ,with shakthi will vioalate IPR agreement with the french.but the recent spat sure have made turbomecas chance for the engine bid for LOH a lot lesser.

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby pragnya » 07 Oct 2011 09:40


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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby Rudradev » 26 Oct 2011 09:13

Is the LCH designed to fill an equivalent role to MH-6 Little Bird/AH-6 in the US armed forces? Light gunship for aerial scouting and special operations, that can land in the middle of streets and building terraces for the prosecution of urban warfare, as well as tiny patches of real estate in the jungles of the Red Corridor?

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby Pratyush » 26 Oct 2011 09:21

Rudradev wrote:Is the LCH designed to fill an equivalent role to MH-6 Little Bird/AH-6 in the US armed forces? Light gunship for aerial scouting and special operations, that can land in the middle of streets and building terraces for the prosecution of urban warfare, as well as tiny patches of real estate in the jungles of the Red Corridor?


The LOH is in the class of AH-6.

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby Rahul M » 26 Oct 2011 10:40

Rudradev wrote:Is the LCH designed to fill an equivalent role to MH-6 Little Bird/AH-6 in the US armed forces? Light gunship for aerial scouting and special operations, that can land in the middle of streets and building terraces for the prosecution of urban warfare, as well as tiny patches of real estate in the jungles of the Red Corridor?

no, it is more in the family of the twin engine super cobras of USMC. US army originally used the single engined version of the AH-1 as it attack helicopter, before it shifted to the heavier apache.
role wise there is little difference between LCH and apache but the later being a heavier bird should have better armour against ground fire.

the LOH might be considered the Indian equivalent of the little bird but increasingly, observation roles would be taken over by UAVs.

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby Rudradev » 26 Oct 2011 11:01

Even if observation relies mostly on UAVs, a Little Bird type chopper toughened up against small-arms/RPG fire could be useful in certain asymmetric warfare scenarios. e.g. providing aerial observation plus fire support to special forces infiltrating a Pakistani urban zone for a snatch-Dawood type op, or to paramilitary forces in anti-Naxal operations. It may be a while before Rustom or AURA can be deployed in a combat role. I wonder if LOH will fill that gap.

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby Rahul M » 26 Oct 2011 11:35

it's not possible to toughen up small choppers against ground fire beyond a certain point. RPG's would be lethal to even the most heavily armoured chopper at close range. helos mostly depend on cover and surprise although LCH will feature countermeasures against heat seeking missiles.
both IAF and IA, as well as IN operate a sizable number of UAV units and are increasingly adept at using them. the vayu shakti 2010 videos are a good place to look. the UAV's not only covered the whole demo in night time but also guided MKI's strikes to their target.
LOH and dhruv both are likely to be used in asymmetric warfare.

rustom and esp. AURA are for different jobs.

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby VinodTK » 05 Nov 2011 07:07

Ageing rotors
Nearly 70 per cent of the IAF's 300 helicopters have already completed their prescribed life. There is a deficit of 26 per cent in the number of helicopters required for operational responsibilities. The shortfall in the case of attack helicopters is worse—the fleet is 46 per cent below its required number. Despite availability of funds, the IAF, as pointed out by a Comptroller and Auditor General report in 2010, was unable to induct even a single helicopter between 2002 and 2010.
:
:
Despite the shortage of helicopters at home, the defence ministry has been deploying helicopters abroad for participation in UN missions. Earlier, India had 17 helicopters in Congo and Sudan. In July, India withdrew its four remaining Mi-35 attack helicopters from these missions. It has now deployed six light-utility Chetak and Cheetah helicopters in Congo. “The military leadership is aware of the effect the lack of helicopters could have on the current operations,” said Major. “That is perhaps why we have brought back most of our helicopters from the UN missions.”

The IAF helicopter fleet consists of Cheetah, Chetak, Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH) and the Russian-developed Mi series, which constitute 60 per cent of the IAF inventory and are used for airlift and attack operations. The attack helicopter fleet, currently made up of Mi-25s and Mi-35s, support Army operations. “Helicopters are one of the most important assets of any Air Force,” said Air Commodore (retd) Jasjit Singh, director of Centre for Air Power Studies. He said India needed helicopters in hand to deal with border surveillance and asymmetrical conflicts.

The anti-Maoist operations, for example, have already seen the deployment of two Mi-17 helicopters in Jharkhand to help airlift troops and in evacuation. The Union home ministry, which deployed a fleet of seven choppers for troop deployment, casualty evacuation and sending reinforcements in Maoist-affected areas last year, has hired six Mi-17 helicopters.

In Chhattisgarh, the IAF has deployed four helicopters to assist Central and state police forces. “There is a request for deploying two more helicopters at Ranchi. Thus we will have a total of six helicopters in these operations,” said Air Chief Marshal N.A.K. Browne.

To bridge the shortfall, the IAF is planning to acquire 230 choppers. The list includes 12 AW101 VVIP helicopters, 80 Mi-17 helicopters and 12 heavy-lift choppers. The IAF will also procure 22 attack helicopters. Boeing is leading the race for the order with its AH-64D Apache Longbow choppers.

At IAF headquarters, however, the worry has not been limited to slow procurement. Shortage of spare parts, too, has been an issue. The IAF still sends engines abroad for overhaul, leaving choppers grounded. However, work to decrease India's dependence on the foreign arms companies has already started. The Hindustan Aeronautics Limited is building three helicopters—Dhruv Advanced Light Helicopter, Light Combat Helicopter and Light Utility Helicopter—while at Bharat Electronics Ltd, scientists and engineers are working to provide sophisticated avionics products for the military choppers.

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby PratikDas » 05 Nov 2011 08:04

Do we have a root cause for the Dhruv crash? I'm not suggesting that ageing rotors has anything to do with it but now would be time to order more Dhruvs into the mix.

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby koti » 08 Nov 2011 15:08

Is it feasible to deploy grad type rockets from helicopters? Maybe it can double in to be a solution to artillery problems in mountainous terrain.
Did such a prototype ever exist?

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby Pratyush » 08 Nov 2011 16:02

The FSU developed some truly massive air launched rockets. But nothing in the class of the GRAD. The reason being that in order to use the grad. You probably will need the Mi 26 class helo to carry it.

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby koti » 08 Nov 2011 16:28

Alright,
What about the capability to use transport A/c to launch them then?
Something like an AC130 firing GRAD rockets?

I am looking at the merits of using air-launched artillery over conventional ones.

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby Rahul M » 08 Nov 2011 16:32

even the 105mm is tough ask for the AC-130. not economical or practical for aircraft that would have to land for every reload. the use of arty is precisely the ability to land round after round on target at minimum cost. nothing can replace it.

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby Pratyush » 08 Nov 2011 16:51

^^^

Please take a look at the Zunni and the Russian rockets as well There largest AL rocket was 220 MM IIRC,. After a point you need to have accuracy, as ferrying rockets of that size to be fired over a target zone is a waste of resources. A cluster bomb will do the job much more effectively, and cheaply. If you need range then you have number of stand off missiles to do the job.

In the end the question is what is your need, that required you to throw the Grad using an airborne delivery method.

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby koti » 08 Nov 2011 17:02

Rahul M wrote:even the 105mm is tough ask for the AC-130. not economical or practical for aircraft that would have to land for every reload. the use of arty is precisely the ability to land round after round on target at minimum cost. nothing can replace it.


Rockets should have very less recoil compared to cannons if that was what you intended to say.
I agree with the rest of the post.

Pratyush wrote:^^^
In the end the question is what is your need, that required you to throw the Grad using an airborne delivery method.

Can't think of anything substantial. Maybe quicker deployment and deployment from otherwise inaccessible areas(Lack of arty there or mountainous terrain).

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby krishnan » 08 Nov 2011 17:08

SPG

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby Rahul M » 08 Nov 2011 17:12

koti, where would the exhaust go ? you know what gas ingestion does to aero engines don't you ?

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby shiv » 08 Nov 2011 17:23

By definition any aircraft with bombs is air launched/airborne artillery. When the air launched munition is designed to go further than can be taken by gravity alone, it becomes an air launched missile. If unguided it is just like a Grad. If guided it becomes just like a Brahmos.

Unguided rockets in underwing pods or in internal racks such as the HF 24 had are exactly the same principle as a Grad. However the Grad has a warhead weight of about 20 kg as per Wiki while the 57 mm rocket pods used by the Mi 25 has a warhead weight of 1.5 kg or so. In fact Libyan rebel forces were shown using such aircraft rocket pods mounted on trucks and that was discussed here.

But that extends only to 20 km - or a bit longer for Pinaka/Smerch type MBRLs. If you need to hit an area target 500 km away you will need Jags with dumb bombs or PGMs carrying subminitions

Mi 25 in rocket attack
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bx8DpE9AiTI

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby shiv » 08 Nov 2011 17:30

Mi 35 rockets vs Gatling A-10
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VuLnnVDld-M

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby suryag » 09 Nov 2011 11:25

Dont know if this link is kosher(based on the source)

LCH R&D on track to deliver high altitude attack capability to IAF

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby VinodTK » 10 Nov 2011 05:31

First Mi-17V-5 helicopters delivered to India
The first batch of Mi-17V-5 helicopters have been delivered to India under a contract signed by state arms exporter Rosoboronexport in December 2008 for 80 new helicopters.

The helicopters are manufactured by Kazan Helicopters, a subsidiary of the Russian Helicopters holding company as part of the US$1.35 billion contract. Deliveries will be completed by 2014.
:
he Mi-17V-5 is the most up-to-date modification of the Mi-17. The helicopters being delivered are manufactured to the customer’s specification and are unique in their configuration. Each helicopter is equipped with a KNEI-8 avionics suite featuring four large multi-functional displays that are easy to read and help reduce pilot fatigue. This avionics suite also helps cut down pre-flight inspection time, displaying all systems data and alerting crew when necessary.

The Klimov VK2500-powered aircraft have strengthened gearboxes to enable high-altitude operations, addressing a key requirement that emerged following performance inadequacies with India's current Mi-17s.

The Indian military is being renewed and expanded and the service has several major helicopter procurement projects in the pipeline. Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) has developed the 12 000 lb (5.5 ton) Dhruv Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH), 54 of which will go to the Air Force and 105 to the Army under a US$3.56 billion order.

About half of all Dhruvs will be Weapon System Integrated (WSI) with Mistral 2 air-to-air missiles, Helina anti-tank missiles and a 20 mm cannon slaved to the gunner’s helmet-mounted site. Dhruvs will replace the Air Force’s approximately 65 HAL Chetak light utility helicopters. Deliveries are expected to be completed by 2013-2014.

Additionally, the Indian armed forces in 2007 launched a search for 197 light reconnaissance and surveillance helicopters (64 for the Air Force and 133 for the Army). The winner of the US$750 million competition should be announced soon. The Eurocopter AS 550 Fennec and Kamov Ka-226 are being considered after passing trials.

In the attack role the Indian Air Force has 20 Mi-25/35s in service and hopes to replace them with 22 new attack Helicopters. In May 2008 the Indian Ministry of Defence issued a request for proposals for twin-engined attack helicopters but the tender was cancelled in March 2009, only to be re-opened two months later. The AH-64D Apache and Mi-28 Night Hunter were the leading contenders until the Mi-28N was dropped from the competition, leaving the AH-64 as the leading contender.

HAL is also developing the ambitious Light Combat Helicopter (LCH), which first flew in March 2010 after years of delays. It has stealth features, a glass cockpit and armour protection. The LCH carries the same armament as the WSI Dhruv. The IAF has ordered 65 LCHs for about US$1.4 billion, while the Army is buying 114. HAL expects certification next year and production to begin in 2013.

The Air Force’s heavy lift helicopter fleet consists of four Mi-26 ‘Halos’, which may be replaced by 12-15 new heavy lift helicopters. Boeing’s CH-47F Chinook and Mil’s Mi-26T2 are competing for a contract.

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby VinodTK » 11 Nov 2011 03:26

U.S. interested in Indian helicopter tender
The United States has expressed strong interest in participating in India's tender for attack helicopter and heavy-lift helicopters despite the snub it received earlier this year in the Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA) competition, according to a top official.

In remarks to the Defense Trade Advisory Group, Assistant Secretary for Bureau of Political-Military Affairs Andrew Shapiro said, “I have also advocated for our tenders in the Attack Helicopter and Heavy Lift Helicopter competitions. We are hopeful that both will be selected.”

Earlier, the Indian Air Force was reported to have floated tenders for 22 combat and 15 heavy lift helicopters.

Among the U.S. contenders in the race would be Boeing's Apache, for combat, and the Chinook, for heavy-lift.


The reportedly $550 million-tender aims to replace India's ageing helicopter fleet and trials were said to be on in the hot, humid deserts of Rajasthan and the icy Himalayan heights of Ladakh and Leh.

Mr. Shapiro reflected upon his attendance on February last at the Aero India show, an event at which he said he advocated for U.S. defence sales.

“While India unfortunately did not down-select a U.S. aircraft for its MMRCA competition, I believe our relationship with India is much more than one sale,” he said.

Suggesting that Indian acquisition of the U.S. defence equipment was woven into the fabric of a stronger U.S.-India strategic partnership, Mr. Shaprio said that recent evidence of the U.S. efforts in this regard was India's acquisition of 10 C-17 aircraft and a request for six more C-130J aircraft.


I am confused! I thought India has already selected the 22 Apache attach helicopters???

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Re: LCH and other Helicopters Discussion Thread

Postby Philip » 11 Nov 2011 14:49

The Apache is supposed to have been selected,but there's "many a slip 'tween the cup and the lip".The F mag ,in the Apache "to win" featire,says that the MI-28 is also a very capable attack helo.It will probably be a bit cheaper than the US bird,normal for Russian wares (especially subs!),which is why soime bargaining is going on to bring down prices.

I came across in my files recently an excellent though ancient piece by some western mil experts about the coming age of the helo,this was written about 25 years ago (!) and how the Russians also felt that a certain number of attack helos was even more powerful than an armoured division,facts and figures given,including costs.Since this has not been digitised,I will post the article later.It is an intriguing one and especially in the current context of things,the way to go.We need n fact at least 200 dedicated attack helos,which hopefully the LCH (around 180+ for the IA and IAF) will provide along with the supposed Apaches,whose order also needs to be doubled.I suggest that the IA/IAF retain the MI-35s until the Apache number is doubled,and can use these for any UN peacekeeping roles for which they've been used before.Everey helo asset needs to be retained for as long as possible in view of the new Himalayan Sino-Pak JV threat .Extra fire support will come from the armed Dhruvs and MI-17V5s

However,it is frankly past time for the IAF not to act like a dog-in-the-manger and hand over the attack helo assets to the IA,who are better placed to hone their usage and tactics in concert with land forces.The IAF can retain most of the medium and all heavy-lift helos and also whatever light and medium helos ALH and LUHs that they need for their own operations.The time has arrived for the creation of the Army Air Corps,which should not only operate attack and transport helos,but also light aircraft for reconn. AO purposes and even turboprops for COIN ops.Many air forces are looking again towards turboprops for not just COIN but also battlefield support,in the same manner as attack helos instead of using expensive GA fighters.We could develop with the Swis ana rmed version of the Pilatus trainer,or even acquire one of the S.American turboprops used by the Argies and Brazilians.The Italians have recntly designed a very light and inexpensive COIN aircraft,AWST had details,will post later.


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