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Transport Aircraft for IAF

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Viv S » 07 Dec 2016 00:00

Gilles wrote:Oh dont misunderstand me, there is no doubt in my mind that the IAF knew all along that these runway upgrades would have to be done, but this appeared nowhere in the brochures and the sales pitches to sell the aircraft. In any documentation, press releases etc provided by both Boeing and whatever customer who was looking to buy the aircraft and trying to convince the bean counters to fork out the required money, it was always presented as a huge bush aircraft that could land on any unsurfaced airstrip, as long as it was at least 3500 feet long. Earlier publications (before the IAF expressed its interest) even claimed 3000 feet.....

Well that may be relevant to a customer that needed such a capability (maybe the USAF). All IAF ops, including those involving the C-130J & the Il-76, are conducted from surfaced airstrips.

Whether you buy a 1974 or a 2016 Ferrari, it is still a Ferrari and both must be maintained as such.

Given that the C-17 was a more economical aircraft per unit cargo (flyaway) than the Il-476*, making a comparison to the 'Ferrari' is odd... unless you see the Il-76 in the mould of an Alfa Romeo perhaps.

*May have changed after the Ruble crash last year.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby rohitvats » 07 Dec 2016 20:30

Gilles wrote:<SNIP>So after selling this aircraft as a huge land and go-anywhere bush aircraft to the IAF, the same IAF had no choice but to upgrade a series of runways to accommodate same aircraft.........Now that the wedding is celebrated and the marriage is consumed.......


Your position with respect to published capabilities of C-17, and those not published, is well known. And they may hold good in case of opposing the Canadian purchase decision. But it would be prudent to not bring the same line of argument for the IAF purchase or the way we intend to employ the aircraft. Indian transport aircraft scene is pretty different.

1. First things first, India is not about to embark on expeditionary war. Something which might require an a/c like C-17 to land on short unpaved runways.

2. IAF has a very large network of airfield available across the entire length and breadth of the country. So, even if C-17 cannot land with it full permissible load on these airfields, it is still better than having to land on unpaved airfield in the middle of nowhere.

3. IAF is in the process of lengthening and updating almost its entire network of airfields across the country. This involves not only the runways but pretty much everything else. It is even updating its Advanced Landing Grounds (ALGs) to take large aircrafts like C-130 and C-17. These ALG are basically a runway in forward, inaccessible areas with basic set-up to support transport aircraft and helicopter operations. Most of them are located along Sino-Indian border in our north-eastern states. Some are in eastern Ladakh in our north, again along India-Tibet borders. Areas which will be scene of action if balloon goes up between India and China.

Recently, C-17 landed on an ALG where earlier an An-32 used to land. This ALG happens to be under 50 km from the Sino-Indian border in one of our north-eastern states and situated at an altitude of 6,000 feet. It has a runway which is under 4,500 feet.

An An-32 can carry between 5-6 tons. If a C-17 can bring in between 20-30 tons to ALG like these, that itself is a big advantage. Not to forget that cargo-hold dimensions of C-17 allows for many large-sized objects to be carried. So, where earlier IAF would've required almost half+ squadron of An-32, a single C-17 can do the task. It also makes on ground logistics easier.

I don't recall an IL-76 ever landing on any of our ALG in north or eastern India.

4. Coming to the weight aspect as mentioned in CAG report who mentioned, the report errs on a crucial aspect - it assumes that every logistic sortie of C-17 needs to happen with full load capacity. It never works that way.

An IL-76 which can theoretically carry ~40 tons of payload, is never able to carry this maximum capacity. This is because the cargo hold dimensions ensure that it is filled up by volume much before full payload capacity is utilized. Only in case of compact payload like a T-72 tank does an IL-76 utilize it full payload capacity.

If the CAG was to undertake an assessment on similar lines for IL-76, it would point out similar under-utilization as well!

However, there is another aspect to this argument.

This is what USAF website page on C-17 says about the a/c:

Maximum payload capacity of the C-17 is 170,900 pounds (77,519 kilograms), and its maximum gross takeoff weight is 585,000 pounds (265,352 kilograms). With a payload of 169,000 pounds (76,657 kilograms) and an initial cruise altitude of 28,000 feet (8,534 meters), the C-17 has an un-refueled range of approximately 2,400 nautical miles. Its cruise speed is approximately 450 knots (.74 Mach)


Lets look at the data:

Empty weight - 128,100 kg
Full fuel capacity - 82,124 kg
Payload capacity - 76,657 kg
Max AUW - 2,65, 352 kg.

So, it seems to achieve full payload capacity, about 21.5 tons of less fuel than max fuel capacity needs to be carried. And this as per the above quoted statement from USAF website gives a range of 2,400 nautical miles or about 4,500 km.

Now, at its maximum from north to south, India is under 3,500 km in length. C-17s placed in center of India (where we do place IL-76) would require max radius of ops of 2,000 km. That is HALF of what C-17 can do with max payload!!!

In our case, given the radius of action and PCN restricton of AUW of 216 tons, a C-17 can carry 60 tons payload with ~30 tons of fuel to ensure it reaches the farthest corner of the country. Even if we give more leeway, a single C-17 can carry about 55 tons with 35 tons of fuel and still serve almost every nook or cranny of this country.

That is about 20 tons more than what an IL-76 can carry.

All the airfields mentioned in the CAG report that you mentioned are within 1,000 km of the base from where C-17 operate. In our case, the payload and fuel capacity of C-17 along with our operational requirement, gives tremendous capability.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Philip » 08 Dec 2016 12:23

The IL-476 in production in Russia costs one-third/one-fourth of a C-17 which is no longer in production.Plus the load is now around 52t ,range 4000+km .“The IL-76MD-90A is based on the same airframe and fuselage of IL-76 aircraft.”
Il-76MD-90A is capable of carrying 126 parachutists or 145 troops in single deck arrangement and 225 troops in double-deck arrangement. It can also be installed with special equipment to carry 114 injured persons.Full details here;
https://thaimilitaryandasianregion.word ... ft-russia/

New platforms are being procured for the extra Phalcon/AWACS for the IAF.perhaps new IL-78 tankers too. If we need extra C-17s we'll have to buy them second-hand.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Nick_S » 16 Dec 2016 09:24

Exclusive: Indian Air Force Now Won't Ferry Personnel On Its Main Transporter Aircraft Following Crash Inquiry

by Sudhi Ranjan Sen

http://www.huffingtonpost.in/2016/12/15 ... n-homepage

Russia-made medium transporter aircraft AN-32–the mainstay workhorse of the Indian Air Force (IAF)--will no longer ferry personnel, or civilians, the Indian Air Force has told the Ministry of Defence. It has also recommended that the entire fleet of AN-32s to be replaced as soon as possible. :eek:

The findings of the Court of Inquiry—recently accepted by the Indian Air Force—says the crash was caused due to a phenomena called "icing"

The Court of Inquiry has established the pilot tried to avoid bad weather and had even deviated from course. "This indicates pilot awareness," the official said. But why the pilot couldn't take anti-icing measures is not very clear.

In India, icing is typically witnessed between altitudes of 22,000 and 24,000 feet, where the temperatures range between 0 degrees Celsius and minus 15 degrees Celsius.

"Recovery was possible had the pilot climbed higher—above 25,000ft. But these aircraft are old and to climb higher, the pilot would have had to reduce weight. That would mean dumping the load over the sea which was not possible in this case," the official said. The ill-fated transporter was carrying personnel.

This is why the IAF has now told the defence ministry that AN-32 will only carry load that can be dumped over sea in case of an emergency. This means no transporting personnel from now on.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Paul » 16 Dec 2016 12:50

IOW More Hercules?

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Aditya_V » 16 Dec 2016 12:56

How accurate is that article, seems BS, how can after 30 years IAF suddenly decide one fine day AN-32 is unfit. Mainstream media seems to be putting rubish which was shown on social media

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Paul » 16 Dec 2016 13:21

It could be true though.

Someone I know was flying to A&N on an an32 which suddenly developed engine trouble in 90s. They had to dump the entire load into BOB including live goats, atta etc. to make it back to chennai.

This incident seems to tally with IAF recommendation.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Pratyush » 16 Dec 2016 14:01

Aditya_V wrote:How accurate is that article, seems BS, how can after 30 years IAF suddenly decide one fine day AN-32 is unfit. Mainstream media seems to be putting rubish which was shown on social media



It is possible for IAF to change its assessment, as the are owner of the aircraft and are aware of the risks involved in operating this design after all this time. Moreover the age of the aircraft fleet will also be a deciding factor.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby adityadange » 16 Dec 2016 14:05

why not fly at lower altitude?

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby JTull » 16 Dec 2016 14:38

adityadange wrote:why not fly at lower altitude?


Efficiency reduces, which means lower range - a critical issue over sea.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby rohitvats » 16 Dec 2016 16:55

I cannot comment on the veracity or otherwise of the HP report above, but do remember that AN-32, like T-72, is one of those inductions which happened solely because USSR was giving them to us literally free!

IIRC, it is said that each AN-32 costed same as a Maruti-800 car when it first came out. When it was trialed for Para-Drop, it was found unsuitable at the entire stick got dispersed over a large area. Even the Red Army did not recommend An-32 for static line para drop.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Aditya_V » 16 Dec 2016 19:15

I agree AN-32 is less than ideal, but why is IAF talking of upgrading them or flying them all these years. The aircraft cannot be grounded one fine day, without replacements in arriving in numbers, right?

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby abhik » 16 Dec 2016 19:51

What is the safety record of the AN-32 (compared to its peers)?

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby rohitvats » 16 Dec 2016 19:59

Aditya_V wrote:I agree AN-32 is less than ideal, but why is IAF talking of upgrading them or flying them all these years. The aircraft cannot be grounded one fine day, without replacements in arriving in numbers, right?


Frankly, we don't know what IAF said. All you've a single report which quotes 'something' from the IAF investigation. W/O knowing the full context of the report, we would be running around circles.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Indranil » 16 Dec 2016 20:58

The An-32 just underwent a midlife upgrade! There are multiple civilian planes based on it. In flight de-icing is not rocket science anymore. The Saudis just ordered a whole bunch of An-132 (modernized An-32). May be a ready-made solution is already available*. We may need to modify the plane to add sufficient deicing capability. But junking a workhorse like the An-32 without the replacement line (Tata-Airbus) being in place does not make much sense.

*The Chinese may also have a solution with their civilian MA-60/MA-600/MA-700 versions.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Pratyush » 17 Dec 2016 07:44

I don't think that the IAF is planning to junk the 32. The are saying that they will not moov people on the plane. That reduces the usability of the plane.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Indranil » 25 Dec 2016 02:24

The question remains if IAF is not going to use the An-32s to move people, then what will it use: 228s are too small, Avros are old, C-130s and C-17s are too few!

Meanwhile, the Tata/Airbus collaboration to manufacture C-295s has gone nowhere. HAL chairman says that he can manufacture a 50/70 seater in 6-7 years. God knows how. I hope that they don't reinvent the wheel and go with something that is almost there and make it their own. For example, the Jetstream 61/71 is an offshoot of the Avros. It is a refined design which will be more or less reliable, but has no place in ATR. It is state-of-art, circa 2001. Take it, make it state-of-art circa 2020, aka change the avionics. It will do just fine. Let the young inexperienced designers cut teeth on something like this first. I don't know if HAL can go with the Antonovs with them in bed with the Saudis and the Chinese.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby NRao » 25 Dec 2016 02:43

Pratyush wrote:I don't think that the IAF is planning to junk the 32. The are saying that they will not moov people on the plane. That reduces the usability of the plane.


And that too, move people across the sea/ocean, I thought.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Neshant » 25 Dec 2016 15:42

I've lost track. Is there any indigenous transport aircraft project going on now that India has exited the MTA project with Russia.

Maybe that should be a starting point of discussion with Boeing/Lockheed over cooperation in aircraft development in India.

Start with the design of a transport aircraft and FADEC engine development for the military/cargo as opposed to fighter aircraft.

Something that can lift a payload of 20 to 25 tons over a medium distance.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Philip » 25 Dec 2016 22:37

The IAF's procurement policy appears to be the eorst of the three services.We ard now buying "HanSolo",the very last C-17 available at what will be a collector's item price.Years ago
I predicted that ee would be in the soup post C-17 demise.Now only the IL-476 fits the bill for the future yhough smaller.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Rakesh » 29 Dec 2016 06:31


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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Rakesh » 29 Dec 2016 06:31


NRao
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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby NRao » 29 Dec 2016 18:59

IAF to procure another Boeing C-17 transport aircraft

The Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) chaired by Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar on Friday approved the purchase of one more Boeing C-17 Globemaster heavy-lift transport aircraft, and also reviewed the ongoing projects of the services and the DRDO, sources said.

The Indian Air Force currently operates 10 C-17s, which it began inducting in 2013.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Aditya G » 29 Dec 2016 23:54

Parrikar i believe has exercised all options clauses from UPA purchases. This is the right approach as you get good price for options instead of new tenders.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Bheeshma » 30 Dec 2016 00:02

Instead of buying 1 apiece why not 2 more and make 2 squadrons of 6 each? Complemented by 12-18 IL-76's (upgraded if possible) its a pretty decent heavy lift capability for IAF.
More importantly isn't C-17 production line closed? So second hand would be the only option. In that case why only 1?

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby NRao » 30 Dec 2016 00:40

Not too sure. But, one because only one was left (white tail). They had a requirement for more.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Aditya G » 30 Dec 2016 01:12

They have picked up whatever was left on the C-17's unsold inventory. For a plane that was produced in excess numbers C-17 has surely done well to have customers scrambling for it.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Bheeshma » 30 Dec 2016 01:41

Even puny tinpots like qatar and kuwait will have 8 C-17's. Very bad planning from GoI and IAF in that regard. They may have to do with 11 C-17 and same number of IL-76's.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Rakesh » 30 Dec 2016 03:26

When the deal for the C-17s was signed in June 2011, there was an option for six more. As always, A K Antony and his cronies at the MoD dilly dallied and when production ended in 2015, that was the end of that. Boeing reportedly reminded the Indian Govt about the production deadline, but nothing came out of it. So Bheeshma, we could have had two squadrons of eight plans each...but such is the malaise of our babus and politicians.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Cybaru » 30 Dec 2016 07:14

There is a bone yard with 2-3 squadrons of C17 lying around. Time to pick up 8 surplus with zeroed out frames.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Viv S » 30 Dec 2016 08:04

The US has 14 C-17s held with the reserves. Another 16 aircraft are set to join them, where they'll undergo very sparse usage mainly to keep the aircraft airworthy.

Two C-17 squadrons to shut down - Dec 22, 2014
The Air Force will inactivate two C-17 squadrons over the next two years in a budget-saving move, according to new details released by Air Mobility Command Monday.

Sixteen C-17 Globemasters — eight from the 17th Airlift Squadron at Joint Base Charleston, South Carolina, and eight from the 10th Airlift Squadron at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington — will transition from primary inventory to backup inventory, saving the Air Force about $110 million a year, an AMC news release said. That means the planes will no longer receive funding for personnel and flying hours but will continue to get necessary resources to support weapon system sustainment.

Eventually, however, the Air Force plans to transfer the aircraft to the reserve component.

"In this fiscally constrained environment, we have to balance readiness, capability and capacity," Major Gen. Michael Stough, director of AMC strategic plans, requirements and programs, said in the release.

"To best preserve this capability, the intent is to fund these aircraft back into primary mission aircraft inventory in future years, and transfer them to the Reserve Component — we're working with our Air National Guard partners to do that, perhaps even as early as" fiscal 2016, Stough said. "We rely on our total force partners to meet our global requirements; we couldn't do the mission without them. We'll continue to leverage the unique strengths of the active and Reserve components to meet current and future requirements with available resources."

The inactivations were first announced in March as part of budget submissions, but Monday's release provides the most details so far.

The C-17 squadron at Charleston will make the transition in fiscal 2015, followed by the McChord C-17 squadron in fiscal 2016.

The C-17, which made its debut in 1991, is considered the Air Force's workhorse in providing troop and cargo transport — often in war zones and areas affected by natural disasters and humanitarian crises. This summer, C-17s ferried food and supplies to Yazidis stranded on Mount Sinjar.

As of this May, the Air Force had 187 C-17s in its active-duty inventory, 14 in the Air Force Reserve and 12 in the Air National Guard.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Viv S » 30 Dec 2016 08:11

Trouble is the service brass & MoD mandarins appear to be living in silos. They have little to no interest in deviating from convention.

As a consequence we can spend $45 mil on each Mirage MLU and contemplate buying brand new F-16s, but are dead-silent on the possibility of acquiring second-hand Mirages from other operators.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Karthik S » 30 Dec 2016 08:17

We need 5 more C 17s based on initial requirements, if we can get those planes in reserve, it will be good enough. BTW a country like Qatar with 2.3 Lakh citizens needs 8 C 17s? What will they transport and to where?

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Cybaru » 30 Dec 2016 09:49

One of the qatari C17 is flying around in qatar airways colors. But yeah, they could make a request for 5-8 additional used frames under fms and close this transport saga once for all.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Paul » 30 Dec 2016 10:34

They need C17s to transport Limos/SUVs when the Sheikhs come to Pakistan to Hunt Houbaras. I'm serious.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Austin » 05 Jan 2017 10:17

India To Buy Six More C295s for Coast Guard

http://www.ainonline.com/aviation-news/ ... oast-guard

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Cain Marko » 05 Jan 2017 10:29

^ very good news Austin, and interesting to boot:
The Airus-Tata partnership will deliver the C295s for the Coast Guard in “raw” condition to the Defence Research Development Organisation (DRDO), which will integrate an indigenous mission system. “DRDO could likely use a surface-scanning radar that could be coupled with transponders on boats, an imperative for the Coast Guard,” said Bharat Malkani, managing director of Max Aerospace & Aviation Ltd. The mission system could be a derivative of the multisensor airborne early warning and control (AEW&C) system developed by Center for Airborne System (CABS) with DRDO for the Embraer 145 platform, a defense official told AIN. “The C-295 is not a complicated aircraft. It is easy for DRDO to integrate the sensor in the nose with OEM input. It is not complicated structural work, and can be certified for airworthiness by the Indian body, CEMILAC,” said the official.

The Airbus Defence and Space C295 maritime patrol aircraft comprises a range of sensors and components including search radar, electro-optic/infrared sensors, electronic support measures, an electronic intelligence system (ELINT), COMINT, a magnetic anomaly detector (MAD), an IFF interrogator, a satcom, a datalink and a Link-11.


An indigenous suite for the MPAA is not far - fantastic, was waiting for this for a long time!

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby nachiket » 05 Jan 2017 11:35

^^ Excellent news if true. A C-295 MPA would be a good addition to the IN as well to supplement the bigger more expensive P-8s.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Cybaru » 05 Jan 2017 11:43

It's possible we may see AEW off this platform as well for future if the deal is signed.

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Re: Transport Aircraft for IAF

Postby Philip » 05 Jan 2017 12:03

We have in he past bought second hand aircraft.Our Ru LRMP aircraft for a start. If I remember correctly,a few ex-RN Sea Harriers too.So what's the problem picking up almost new ex-USAF C-17s if we really want more of the type? Or at lease lease them! NATO leased Soviet era transports and helos during the Afghan conflict,if the west could do that why can't we too? After all we're leasing an Akula-2 with another in the pipeline. Why limit leasing to just the IN? In future,only brand new IL-476s will be available for heavy transports,which I predict will be acquired once the legacy IL-76s start retiring.


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