India’s Defense Acquisition Council Approves P-8I Maritime Patrol Aircraft

 

The Indian Defense Acquisition Council has approved 4 additional Boeing P-8I long-range maritime patrol aircraft for $762 million for the Indian Navy. This order supplements the existing fleet of  8 such aircraft, reports Defense World. A variant of the Poseidon operated by the U.S. Navy, the P-8I is designed to protect the vast coastline and territorial waters of India. It can conduct anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare, intelligence, maritime patrol, and surveillance and reconnaissance missions.

The P-8I for Indian Navy, photo courtesy Boeing

The P-8I for Indian Navy, photo courtesy Boeing

July 19, 2015   No Comments

Indian Navy Opts for Sikorsky Helicopters

Sikorsky’s commercial bid for multi-role helicopters (MRH), submitted some time ago, will be opened later this month, after which final price negotiations for 16 units will begin. Two bidders had previously been approved in the technical trials stage but the other contender was eliminated due to financial scandals.

The S-70B Seahawk is a 10-ton, twin-engine, ship-borne platform with advanced anti-ship and anti-submarine warfare capability manufactured by the United Technologies subsidiary in Connecticut.  Under the terms of the tender, it will be customized for amphibious assault operations and will replace the Indian Navy’s aging fleet of Augusta Westland Sea King Mk42B/C helicopters. The long-pending acquisition of the 16 helicopters is critical for the navy since it is  running out of choppers that can detect, track and kill enemy submarines. Indian Navy officers said MRH numbers were expected to increase to around 100 units in future for deployment aboard newer warships as they were commissioned. This is the first win for a defense application by storied maker of choppers. Textron’s Bell Helicopter unit has a strong presence in India already and Boeing has won some Apache business as well.

Sikorsky S70B Helicopter, Photo credit WIkipedia

Sikorsky S70B Helicopter, Photo credit WIkipedia

India’s Navy is also keen to kick-start a much bigger project for manufacturing 124 multi-role helicopters, armed with anti-submarine warfare (ASW) and early-warning capabilities as well as customized for amphibious commando operations, in a project worth  $3 billion.

November 13, 2014   No Comments

Indian, Foreign Contenders Partner on Navy Bid

India’s Ministry of Defense reissued a request for proposal to three local private sector shipyards to build four amphibious assault ships for about $4 billion. All three contenders are permitted to enter into joint ventures with foreign original equipment manufacturers.

ABG Shipyard, Larsen & Toubro, and Pipavav Defence & Offshore Engineering, all located on India’s Malabar Coast will compete to build 40,000-tonne landing platform docks for the Indian Navy.

ABG Shipyard, located in Surat in the state of Gujarat, is the flagship company of India’s  Aditya Birla Group, a $40 billion corporation. ABG will partner with Alion Science and Technology Corporation, in McLean VA. Larsen and Toubro will team with Spain’s Navantia, while Pipavav has teamed with France’s DCNS.

 

 

 

November 12, 2014   No Comments

Indian Defense Minister’s Shopping List

India currently has an outdated system of weaponry, and the armed forces face a shortage of ammunition, submarines, helicopters, and fighter jets to mention a few of the items that are urgently needed, according to a report on NDTV, a media company that owns a news channel in India

The Indian Air Force needs at least 39 squadrons of fighter planes but has only 32, and its chief urged a closure of the $15 billion fighter jet deal with France’s Dassault Aviation for the supply of 126 Rafale fighters.

India last bought artillery guns in 1987, and thus, just modernizing the artillery is estimated at $5 billion. 100 Naval Multi-Role Helicopters and additional Naval Utility Helicopters will cost approximately $13 billion.

New Delhi also wants the Indian private sector to acquire technology from foreign companies and set up joint ventures or JVs in India. Foreign manufacturers have also been allowed to own as much as 49% in such JVs.

Manohar Parrikar, India’s new Minister for Defense, was sworn in on November 10, 2014. Relinquishing his former role as chief minister for the western state of Goa, Mr. Parrikar has moved to Delhi to join the federal government.

Admiral Shekhar Sinha, the former chairman of the Integrated Defense Staff opined that foreign weapons manufacturers would invest in India if they were allowed to also export from India. He further added that limiting the amount of foreign investment may not be conducive to the foreign companies seeking JVs to transfer critical technology to Indian companies.

 

November 11, 2014   No Comments

India starts receving P-8i surveillance aircraft

According to Aviation Week, India’s first delivery of an ‘in-country’  Boeing P8-i aircraft this month will be followed by two further aircraft in the third and fourth quarters of the year. India has eight P-8Is on firm order and Boeing is optimistic that options on a further four could be taken up later in 2013, or early 2014.

The Indian Navy became the first  international customer for the P-8, which is a modified Boeing 737, in the wake of the 2008 terrorist attacks on Mumbai.  Besides surveillance, the airplane is also delivered with anti-submarine missiles.

May 28, 2013   No Comments