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Hyderabad – Pawan Hans Limited (“Pawan Hans”), a Government of India company under Ministry of Civil Aviation today announced that it signed agreements for the leasing of six Sikorsky S-76D™ helicopters from The Milestone Aviation Group Limited (“Milestone”), the global leader in helicopter leasing. The announcement was made during the Wings India event in Hyderabad, India.
The aircraft will support Pawan Hans’ onshore and offshore helicopter operations in India with Pawan Hans contracted to operate two S-76D helicopters for the Government of India’s Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (“ONGC”).
In addition to the six helicopters, of which five have already delivered, Milestone and Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin company are also providing Pawan Hans with comprehensive value and sustainment packages to support the phasing-in of this new helicopter type into its fleet.
Speaking at Wings India, Sanjeev Razdan, Chairman and Managing Director of Pawan Hans said, “Pawan Hans is the market leader and is very selective in bringing the ideal technology relevant for the Indian market. In the medium twin category, the S-76D is the ideal aircraft to support our offshore operations in South Asia. The helicopter has been launched with a completely new maintenance and support philosophy by Pawan Hans.
With agreements in place with several OEMs, and the introduction of the technologically advanced S-76D helicopter, Pawan Hans is playing a pivotal role in bringing next-generation helicopter operations to the Indian market.”
Michael York, Head of Emerging Markets at Milestone said “The S-76D is a new helicopter platform type for Pawan Hans that will enhance their operations with greater capabilities and advanced technologies. Through this transaction, we are not only cultivating a new operator for the S-76D but also starting a long-term relationship between Milestone and Pawan Hans.”
“The Milestone team has worked hard to put together a comprehensive value package for Pawan Hans. This value package is a key differentiator for Milestone and illustrates the depth of service capability that we offer, bringing tailor-made solutions to our customers. Milestone is proud to have been selected by Pawan Hans as their leasing partner and we thank them for the trust they have placed in us.”
“We welcome Pawan Hans into the Lockheed Martin family, and we value our continued relationship with Milestone. Lockheed Martin is thrilled that Pawan Hans is introducing the S-76D aircraft to the Indian market to perform critical offshore oil and gas transport missions,” said Bill Blair, Chief Executive Lockheed Martin India. “Selection of these advanced aircraft combined with Sikorsky’s support services will ensure high availability rates for customers that rightly demand reliability and performance and are aligned with Lockheed Martin’s focus on such an important region”.
The legendary S-76® helicopter operates successfully in more than 40 countries on six continents, fulfilling its many missions in varied environmental conditions. Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin Company has delivered more than 875 S-76 helicopters to customers globally since 1977, contributing daily to a growing total of more than 7.5 million flight hours. The S-76D helicopter, through its application of modern technologies, is designed to provide a substantial increase in performance, power and value.
Official press release by Avian WE to IDN
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Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, a subsidiary of Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, has begun production of the fifth-generation Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA). The Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA), which is part of the Defence Research and Development Organisation, designed the plane. In a tweet on March 9, the DRDO stated:
“The manufacture of the Leading Edge of AMCA began at HAL with specific material for 5th gen design based on the design of ADA and DRDO. Before being installed on the first prototype, the unit will be subjected to structural and other tests. AMCA has reached a critical juncture.”
In 2010, the feasibility studies for the design and development of AMCA were approved. Over the years, the design has gone through several changes and tests. It was originally planned to build two technology demonstrators.
In 2018, the demonstrators received government approval. However, the focus was later switched to developing a working aircraft powered by the GE F414-INS6 engine. While the preliminary design assessment of the aircraft is complete, the critical design review is expected to be finished this year.
The aircraft would be capable of two configurations: stealth and non-stealth. The stealth version would be capable of carrying a 1,500 kg internal payload, while the non-stealth version would be capable of carrying up to 5,000 kg externally.
The twin-engine aircraft will be powered by a 110kN Indian engine, which is currently being developed. AMCA Mk2 will be the name of this variant. The engine would be built with the help of a foreign company, most likely Safran of France. Rolls-Royce has also expressed interest in collaborating on an engine.
Meanwhile, on March 17, defence minister Rajnath Singh opened a seven-story Flight Control System (FCS) integration building at DRDO’s Aeronautical Development Establishment (ADE). This 45-day-built facility will be utilised to build avionics for fighter planes like the AMCA and other aerial vehicles. The procedure for securing Cabinet Committee on Security permission for the design and prototype development of Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA) was started on 14 March, according to the Ministry of Defence.
In 2018, VEM Technologies was given a contract to build a full-scale model. AMCA would be manufactured by forming a “special purpose vehicle” with HAL and the commercial sector as partners.
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The Israeli businesses SteadiCopter and Smart Shooter revealed in a press release that they intend to exhibit an armed and unmanned Golden Eagle multi-copter next week.
The presentation will take place as part of ISDEF 2022, a defence trade show that runs from March 21 to 23 in Tel Aviv. The Golden Eagle is built around the SteadiCopter Black Eagle 50E drone and the Smart Shooter SMASH Dragon System.

With the Black Eagle 50E UAV, SteadiCopter, founded in 2005 and based in Migdal HaEmek in northern Israel, contributes to a robust and reliable carrier platform. According to the manufacturer, the multi-copter can take off and land on a limited space, carry a cargo of up to 5 kg with a maximum take-off weight of 35 kg, and stay in the air for up to four hours.

The system has the requisite mobility with a cruising speed of roughly 80 km/h and a top speed of about 125 km/h. The digital data connection enables the transmission of various data to the user, such as real-time video broadcasts and other sensory data collected by the drone. The Black Eagle 50E is transformed into an armed multi-copter drone with a stabilised weapon system for several calibres after the Smart Shooter SMASH Dragon System is integrated.

The SMASH Dragon, which was introduced at the start of the year, is based on the proven SMASH fire control system, which designs the shooter’s aiming point with a very high probability in the display using highly developed image processing and ballistic computer, therefore also without emissions. Controls the shot’s release as well as the optics.

The compact and light armament system, according to the company, can be fitted into a wide range of unmanned aerial vehicles. The weapon system is also well stabilised, according to Smart Shooter, to provide great accuracy even during aggressive flying movements. Furthermore, the conversion kit must be capable of accepting a variety of weapons with a calibre of up to 40 mm.
It should be noted that India is one of the biggest buyers of Israeli arms in the world. And keeping in view with the changing dynamics along its borders with China and Pakistan, India could be a protentional buyer to acquire these deadly combat drones to keep its adversaries at bay.