IAF’s Boeing Apache, Chinook Helicopters: At a time when Indian Military is in a tense stand-off with the Chinese PLA in Ladakh region, the US defence and aerospace giant Boeing has completed the delivery of all new Apache attack helicopters to Indian Air Force while the deliveries of Chinook heavy lift military helicopters were completed in March this year. It will provide a big boost to IAF’s heavy lift and firepower capabilities as it faces an aggressive Chinese military.
“The final five of the 22 Apache attack helicopters were handed over to the IAF at Air Force Station, Hindan,” Boeing said.
Boeing said it completed the delivery of the last five of 15 CH-47F(I) Chinook heavy-lift helicopters to the IAF in March this year.
“Customer centricity, commitment to the modernization and mission-readiness of India’s defence forces are key values to our partnership with India,” said Surendra Ahuja, Managing Director, Boeing Defence India.
“With this delivery of military helicopters, we continue to nurture this partnership and are fully committed to working closely with India’s defence forces to deliver the right value and capabilities to meet their operational needs,” Ahuja added.
Boeing said now its focus will be on providing training and sustainment support to India’s new rotorcraft fleet.
IAF gets the latest Boeing AH-64E Apache Helicopters
India is one of 17 nations to select the Apache and has the most advanced variant, the AH-64E Apache that is also flown by the US and many other countries.
The AH-64E Apache is designed and equipped with an open systems architecture including the latest communications, navigation, sensor and weapon systems.
It has an improved Modernized Target Acquisition Designation System that provides day, night and all-weather target information, as well as night vision navigation capability.
In addition to classifying air and ground targets, Apache’s fire control radar has been updated to operate in the maritime environment.
“It is uniquely suited to meet a commander’s needs, including reconnaissance, security, peacekeeping operations, and lethal attack, across myriad environments – without reconfiguration,” said the company.
IAF gets 22 Boeing Chinook Helicopters
Boeing’s Chinook heavy lift helicopters have been selected by 20 defence forces around the world. These countries either have Chinooks in service, or have signed contracts to receive them.
“The iconic tandem-rotor helicopter has been the world’s most reliable and efficient heavy-lift helicopter for more than 50 years, allowing customers to operate in hot climatic, high altitude and crosswind conditions that typically keep other helicopters from flying,” Boeing said.
Boeing said Indian version of Chinook, CH-47F(I), contains a modern machined airframe, a common avionics architecture system (CAAS) cockpit, and a digital automatic flight control system (DAFCS).
Those innovations and technologies will help the Indian Air Force meet evolving mission demands, maximize interoperability, and reduce lifecycle costs, it said.
In September 2015, India’s Ministry of Defence finalized its order with Boeing for the production, training and support of 22 AH-64E Apache and 15 CH-47F(I) Chinook helicopters.
Earlier this year, India and the US signed a contract for the acquisition of six Apaches for the Indian Army during the US President Donald Trump’s maiden India visit.
Make in India in Defence: Tata-Boeing Joint Venture
Boeing’s joint venture in Hyderabad, Tata Boeing Aerospace Limited (TBAL) has been producing aero-structures for the AH-64 Apache helicopter for both US Army and international customers.
Tata-Boeing JV marks a major step towards the co-development of integrated systems in aerospace and defense in India.
Boeing’s suppliers in India are manufacturing critical systems and components for the Chinooks, including the crown and tailcone assembly by Tata Advanced Systems and the ramp and aft pylon by Dynamatic Technologies.
Boeing today works with over 200 suppliers and partners in the country in support of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s flagship Make in India and Skill India schemes.
With the induction of the Apaches and Chinooks, the company anticipates additional opportunities in rotorcraft training and sustainment programmes in the country.
Boeing is the world’s largest aerospace company and leading provider of commercial airplanes, defense, space and security systems, and global services.
Boeing says its Indian operations have been focused on delivering value to Indian customers with advanced technologies and is committed to creating sustainable value in the Indian aerospace sector. It will entail development of local suppliers while shaping academic and research collaborations with Indian institutions.
Boeing has strengthened its supply chain with 200 partners in India, and a JV to manufacture fuselages for Apache helicopters. Annual sourcing from India stands at $1 billion.
Boeing currently employs 3,500 people in India, and more than 7,000 people work with its supply chain partners.
Boeing’s employee efforts and India country-wide engagement serves communities and citizenship programs to inspire change and make an impact on more than 150,000 lives, said the company.