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Attack Helicopters of IAF - Light Combat Helicopter (LCH), AH-64D Apache : Updates & Discussions

Discussion in 'Indian Air Force' started by flanker143, Mar 16, 2011.

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  1. zebra7

    zebra7 Captain FULL MEMBER

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    With the 120 mm cannon equiped
     
  2. randomradio

    randomradio Colonel Technical Analyst

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    For LCH of course.

    For Rudra, they need to develop a twin arm version.
     
  3. randomradio

    randomradio Colonel Technical Analyst

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    For all of that.

    As of now it will only be equipped with R-73.
     
  4. kaku

    kaku Major Technical Analyst

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  5. bharathp

    bharathp Developers Guild Developers -IT and R&D

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    I have shown that the Helina is under advanced stages of dev. it was tested from ALH Rudra and out of 3 tests, 2 hit the target, one did not. the Helina was also put on Rustom 1 for taxi trials. it is very much part of the arsenal of our armed forces.
    [​IMG]
    mid 2015 picture of Rustom 1 taxi trials with Helina
     
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  6. ashkum2278

    ashkum2278 2nd Lieutant FULL MEMBER

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  7. X_Killer

    X_Killer Captain FULL MEMBER

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    But CLGM is not LAHAT, both are from different manufacturer and developer.
    you again choose the half sentence to show you smartness
    pity on you.
    i'm sharing the complete sentence again
     
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  8. X_Killer

    X_Killer Captain FULL MEMBER

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    The Pune-based DRDO lab, Armament Research & Development Establishment [ARDE] has initiated a tendering process to award a contract for supplying the Guidance system used in its Cannon-launched Laser Guided Missile [CLGM], presently under Cannon-Launched-Guided-Missile-CLGM-Indiadevelopment. The Indian company eventually chosen would have to provide 30 units of the system, that it would need to build in conformance with the design drawings, manufacturing process & quality standards provided to it by the concerned DRDO lab.

    The tender for limited-scale manufacturing of this critical sub-system suggests that its developers have acquired a fair level of confidence with their design, not foreseeing the need for substantial re-design in the future, & are ready to take things forward. Once the final design is locked, large-scale production would be taken up by one of the designated DPSUs. Additionally, news of the postponement of an impending test wasn't followed up with the news of any test having take place subsequently. Could suggest faults were detected pre-flight, they went back to the drawing boards, & are now ready with corrected designs. The CLGM had tasted success earlier in the year.

    This assessment, if true either way, bodes well for the country's missile inventory. The 5 km range CLGM can target armoured vehicles, including Tanks, as well as low-flying aircrafts. It can be fired, both, from the barrel of the indigenous Arjun MBT, thus enhancing that platform's versatility, as well as a standalone system, that can be lugged around by soldiers. India's other indigenous Anti-Tank Guided Missile [ATGM], the Nag, on the other hand, is incompatible with the Arjun Tank, & is much too heavy to function as a man portable anti-tank system. News reports indicate intention to develop a lighter version of the Nag, although no trial launches have taken place, so far. Therefore, to plug in this gap in the arsenal, India intends to import the Israeli LAHAT missiles to kit its presently missile-nude Arjun. In addition, it is also contemplating whether to go for the American Javelin or the Israeli Spike missiles to replace its inventory of older man portable ATGMs. A smooth, preferably accelerated, development of the CLGM could lessen the number of the above mentioned missiles that are to be imported. The CLGM would also enjoy an advantage over the LAHAT in terms of its Guidance System used. While the latter employs a solely laser designated targeting system, the Indian solution is to have both direct/indirect laser designation, as well as heat seeking terminal guidance capability.

    [​IMG]

    @Sancho
     
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  9. X_Killer

    X_Killer Captain FULL MEMBER

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  10. Blackjay

    Blackjay Developers Guild Developers -IT and R&D

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    Arun Jaitley inaugurates manufacture of light combat helicopter at HAL
    By Ajai Shukla | New Delhi | 26 Aug 2017 20:48 pm

    • [​IMG]
    On Saturday in Bengaluru, Defence Minister Arun Jaitley underlined the growing capabilities of Hindustan Aeronautics (HAL) by inaugurating the production of the indigenous design Light Combat Helicopter (LCH), which HAL has designed, developed and will now manufacture.
    On November 7, 2016, the defence ministry had cleared a Rs 2,911-crore procurement of 15 LCHs as a “limited series production” (LSP) order – a little under Rs 200 crore per helicopter. But top HAL sources tell Business Standard the final cost would work out to Rs 231 crore per LCH at 2017-18 prices.
    This is less than half the cost of the AH-64E Apache attack helicopters the Indian Air Force (IAF) has bought from Boeing, US. The Apache is more heavily armed and armoured and has the sophisticated Longbow fire control radar. The LCH does not yet have radar, but HAL intends to develop one before mass production begins.
    HAL is building the 15 LSP choppers at its Bengaluru helicopter complex. However, the army has committed to ordering 114 LCHs, and the air force another 65, which could be built at an upcoming helicopter production facility in Tumkur.
    HAL has custom-designed the 5.8-tonne LCH to provide fire support to the army at mountainous deployment areas on the northern borders, which can be as high as 6,000 metres (almost 20,000 feet).
    At these rarefied altitudes, where the shortage of oxygen prevents troops from carrying heavy weapons into battle, the LCH will provide crucial fire support with its 20-millimetre turret gun, 70-millimetre rockets and, to be incorporated later, a guided missile.
    “The LCH has demonstrated [the] capability to land and take off from Siachen Range (sic) with considerable load, fuel and weapons that are beyond any other combat helicopter,” stated HAL on Saturday.
    Highlighting the LCH’s versatility, HAL stated: “The helicopter can carry out operational roles under extreme weather conditions at different altitudes from sea level, hot weather desert, cold weather and Himalayan altitudes.”
    The superb high-altitude performance of the LCH, like that of its precursor in service, the Dhruv advanced light helicopter (ALH), stems from twin Shakti engines, designed for HAL by French helicopter engine maker Turbomeca (now Safran Helicopter Engines), and built in Bengaluru. While the Shakti’s performance at low altitudes is comparable to other engines of its size, it outperforms them significantly at altitudes above 5,000 feet.
    The LCH has a narrow fuselage, in which two pilots sit one-behind-the-other in an armoured cockpit that can protect them from small arms firing. Like the Dhruv ALH, on which many of the LCH’s flying technologies were tested, the new attack helicopter has a hinge-less main rotor, a bearing-less tail rotor, integrated dynamic system, crashworthy landing gear and a smart all-glass cockpit.
    The LCH’s weapons and sensors were developed and tested on an armed variant of the Dhruv, called the Rudra. HAL’s chairman, T Suvarna Raju, says this evolutionary approach drastically cut down on the LCH’s development time.
    The current order does not include a provision for “performance based logistics” (PBL), which constitute an HAL guarantee that a specified percentage of the fleet is available at all times.
    As Business Standard reported on March 30 (In a first, HAL assures 75% availability of Dhruv fleet) HAL signed its first PBL contract for the Dhruv, requiring it to position maintenance teams in up to 40 army aviation bases and two maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) hubs in the north and east, from where repair teams could respond to maintenance requests from aviation bases.
    Hawk trainer upgrade
    Jaitley also inaugurated an HAL-BAE Systems development programme that aims to enhance the Hawk trainer aircraft from an advanced jet trainer (AJT) into a combat-capable platform that “is capable of delivering precise munitions, including air to ground and close combat weapons”, according to HAL.
    Unlike most fighter aircraft, including the Tejas, the Hawk cannot fly at supersonic speeds. Yet, there is a need for lower-performance combat aircraft that can fly and manoeuvre in valleys to support army soldiers in an environment where there is no major enemy air threat.
    While the IAF has not yet committed to buying the so-called “combatised Hawk”, the presence of Jaitley at the dedication ceremony is significant.

    Link-
    http://wap.business-standard.com/ar...-combat-helicopter-at-hal-117082600691_1.html
     
  11. LonewolfSandeep

    LonewolfSandeep Lieutenant FULL MEMBER

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    MAKE IN INDIA FOR DEFENCE GETS A BIG BOOST! HAL LCH READY TO ROLL OUT! KNOW ALL ABOUT LCH
    SUNDAY, AUGUST 27, 2017 BY INDIANDEFENSE NEWS
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    The production of LCH starts at a time when India has cleared procurement of six Apache multi-role attack helicopters for the Indian Army. Said to be the world's "most advanced" multi-role attack helicopter, the Apache would pack a potent punch and give India a big leg up in its defence capabilities.
    Make in India for defence gets a big boost! India's very own Light Combat Helicopter (LCH) for the Indian Army and Indian Air Force (IAF) is ready and HAL begins its production after Defence Minister Arun Jaitley's inauguration of the manufacturing facility! LCH has been both designed and developed indigenously by HAL or Hindustan Aeronautics Limited. The Defence Acquisitions Council has given its approval for the procurement of 15 LCH. These will be used by the Indian Air Force (IAF) and the Indian Army. We take a look at some important facts about the desi combat chopper and how it gives firepower to the forces:
    India's LCH is a 5.8-tonne class combat helicopter and is powered by two Shakti engines. HAL's Rotary Wing R&D Centre has designed the LCH and the combat helicopter has been cleared by CEMILAC (Center for Military Airworthiness and Certification).
    According to HAL, the LCH boasts of state-of the art technologies like smart glass cockpit, integrated dynamic system, anti-resonance vibration isolation system, bearing less tail rotor, crash worthy landing gear, Armour Protection, hinge less main rotor and stealth features from visual, aural, radar and IR signatures.
    The Light Combat Helicopter will be equipped with 20mm Turret gun, 70 mm rocket, air-to-air missile, EO-Pod and helmet pointing system, says HAL. This image is of a successful weapons trial of the LCH.
    The LCH has been undergoing extensive trials in various technology demonstrator versions - TD-1, TD-2, TD-3 and TD-4. One special feature of the LCH is that it would allow Indian Army and IAF to have light combat power in all-weather conditions. The LCH has "narrow fuselage and tandem configuration for pilot and co-pilot weapon system operator".
    According to HAL, the helicopter can carry out operational roles under extreme weather conditions at different altitudes from sea level, hot weather desert, cold weather and Himalayan altitudes. The helicopter has been tested for the same.
    HAL also claims that the LCH has "demonstrated capability" to land and take off from Siachen Range with "considerable" load, fuel and weapons that are "beyond any other combat helicopter".
    The LCH has been designed with an aim to help carry out dedicated combat roles. These include air defence, anti-tank, scout and support combat search /rescue missions.
    The LCH is also capable of high-altitude warfare since its operational ceiling will be 16,000 to 18,000 feet. The first prototype helicopter had its inaugural flight on Mar 23, 2010. Last year, PTI reported that the LCH has even caught the eye of African countries.
    The production of LCH starts at a time when India has cleared procurement of six Apache multi-role attack helicopters for the Indian Army. Said to be the world's "most advanced" multi-role attack helicopter, the Apache would pack a potent punch and give India a big leg up in its defence capabilities.

    http://www.indiandefensenews.in/2017/08/make-in-india-for-defence-gets-big.html
     
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  12. ashkum2278

    ashkum2278 2nd Lieutant FULL MEMBER

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    If the BAE Systems-HAL Combat Hawk option is exercised, then a cost-effective CAS aircraft can become a procurement possibility. Because the pressing reqmts are for 1) CAS platform & 2) defensive counter-air combat aircraft, i.e. urgent replacements for the 95 MiG-23BNs & 165 MiG-27Ms & 125 MiG-21 Bisons. While the Tejas Mk.1A can be an effective CAS platform with limited air-defence capability, the Combast hawk can be a lethal CAS platform especially over mountainous terrain both along J & K & along the LAC & Chumbi Valley. It is more like a 21st century Gnat with a fixed AAR probe that is small & therefore hard to visually acquire & is also agile enough to manoeuvre through valleys & if equipped with AESA-MMR, it can even achieve automatic terrain avoidance flight. The 83 Tejas Mk.1As on the other hand will be useful in the western plains for both CAS & limited tactical interdiction. The air-defence function can then be the sole domain of the Su-30MKI air dominance platforms.

    Why is everyone ASSUMING that a single-engined combat aircraft will include only the Gripen & F-16? Isn't the Combat Hawk single-engined too? The benchmarks of both the MoD & IAF are that the chosen platform will be COST-EFFECTIVE, i.e. it should be CHEAP TO ACQUIRE & PRODUCE, & it should be available ASAP. On both these counts the Gripen & F-16 & even the F/A-18 don't qualify by any stretch of imagination. On the other hand, a single-seat Combat Hawk with a customised weapons suite comprising lightweight PGMs will be the ideal choice both for CAS & defensive counter-air missions. Availability of TARGO HMDS & Python-5 plus I-Derby will easily compensate for the Combat Hawk's subsonic speed. The only nett additions reqd for the Combat Hawk are an AESA-MMR, MAWS sensors & internal jammer. If a lightweight, internal IRST sensor is available, that's the best icing on the cake since this will easily enable the Combat Hawk to stealthily approach its targets from the rear & engage them in 100% passive mode.

    Just equip the Combat Hawk with the sensors I’ve mentioned above & that will be more than enough to do the reqd job.

    If the Combat Hawk option is exercised, then that will save lots of money for being pumped into the procurements of Tejas Mk.2 & follow-on Rafale tranches.
     
  13. LonewolfSandeep

    LonewolfSandeep Lieutenant FULL MEMBER

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    HAL Light Combat Helicopter ( LCH ) : Light-Lethal-Multirole (Part 1 of 4)
    [​IMG]
    Light Combat Helicopter developed by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited ( HAL ) is a multirole combat helicopter for use by Indian Army and Indian Air Force. It is an attack helicopter derived from the existing HAL Dhruv helicopter. The LCH can be deployed in various roles, including tracking slow-moving aerial targets, insurgency, destroying enemy defences, search and rescue, anti-tank and scouting. It is one of the best weapon systems developed in India presently and has ushered Indian defence market in a new era of modernization and Indigenisation. Read on to know more about this magnificent attack chopper :
    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]

    Background :
    During the 1999 Kargil War, operations of Indian Air Force were hampered as the only combat helicopter, the Mi-35, couldn’t operate at extremely high altitudes where most of the conflict was concentrated.
    "The Mi-35 couldn’t even cross the Banihal pass. We were handicapped and badly needed a chopper that can even launch assaults at high altitudes,” (Retd) Wing Commander Unni Pillai, the chief test pilot of Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. (HAL) reminisced. India has always been at a back foot regarding attack helicopters in comparison to its regional rivals like Pakistan which operates nearly 48 Bell AH-1F/S Attack helicopters which it acquired from U.S. and will be getting CAIC Z-10 from China and T-129 'Atak' from Turkey in addition to Bell AH-1Z Viper from U.S. and Mi-35 'Hind-E' from Russia.

    India on the other hand operated some 20 Mi-35 some of which has been donated to Afghanistan and indigenous HAL Rudra which is an armed variant of HAL Dhruv utility helicopters. India lacked any sort of offensive attack helicopters fleet and India needed dedicated attack helicopters to keep up its offensive teeth. Loopholes were highlighted when India could not deploy any attack helicopters for troop support in high altitude warfare during Kargil War.

    The inability of the MI-25/MI-35 and even the armed MI-17 to operate at these heights resulted in a critical weapon system being left out of the battle, for which India paid a heavy price in terms of casualties. Accordingly, the government approved the development of the Light Combat Helicopter (LCH) by the state owned Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) in 2006.
    [​IMG]
    Development :

    HAL LCH is derived from existing Dhruv helicopter and share many commonality with Dhruv. This is being termed as advantageous because the countries which operate HAL Dhruv can also use those same spares employed for Dhruv in LCH also.

    LCH ground run, was carried out for the first time on February 4, 2010 . The first prototype Technology Demonstrator TD-1 first took to air on 29 March, 2010. It flew a 20-minute flight from HAL's Helicopter Complex, Bengaluru piloted by Group Captains Unni Pillai and Hari Nair. It carried out low speed, low altitude checks on the systems on board. The crew reported that the performance of the helicopter and systems were satisfactory.

    “It is a big day for all of us, especially those involved in the LCH’s design and fabrication,” Ashok Nayak, chairman and managing director of HAL, told Business Standard. “We were going to have the first LCH flight in December but, for one reason or another, it kept getting delayed.” HAL’s Helicopter Complex, R Srinivasan, told Business Standard that the LCH’s weight would be progressively reduced over the first three Technology Demonstrators (TDs) of the LCH. “We will find ways of cutting down TD-1 by 180-200 kg; TD-2, will be another 100 kg lighter; and TD-3 will shave off another 65-75 kg. That would leave the LCH about 200 kg heavier than originally planned, but the IAF has accepted that.”HAL chief Ashok Nayak today confirmed to Business Standard that this schedule was on track. “The weight reduction that we had targeted for TD-1, which flew on Monday, has been met. The second prototype, TD-1, which will make its first flight by September, will be lighter still.”
    [​IMG]

    HAL LCH TD-1 during flight


    LCH TD-2 took to air on 28 June 2011. The TD-2 also had lots of Indian Army specific inputs like the revolutionary digital camouflage. Also the TD-2 is 100kgs lighter than the TD-1. TD-2 is also equipped with a fully functional target acquisition and pilots vision pod a feature which was not seen in TD-1. HAL Chairman and Managing Director (CMD) Ashok Nayak told India Strategic in interviews at the Paris Air Show and New Delhi that the second aircraft was a "considerable improvement" over the first prototype as HAL and DRDO scientists had been able to achieve substantial weight reduction. Mr Nayak said the second prototype was flown to a height of 1.5 km with an All Up Weight (AUW) of 4900 kgs. The parametres successfully tested by HAL test pilots included general handling, slow speed handling, basic Automatic Flight Control System (AFCS) checks, up to 1.5 km altitude and with 60 degree bank turns.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    HAL LCH TD-2 in a digital camoflauge

    The second prototype (TD-2) of Light Combat Helicopter (LCH) successfully completed the sea-level trials at Air Force Station, Tambaram in Chennai which commenced on 1 July 2012. LCH's air speed measurement system was trialed and various component stresses gauged were measured.

    HAL LCH TD-3 took to air on 12 November, 2014 as it was piloted by Wg Cdr Unni Pillai (Retd), HAL's Chief Test Pilot (CTP), Rotary Wing (RW) and ably assisted by Gp Capt Hari Nair (Retd), Deputy CTP (RW), the 20-minute maiden outing of LCH TD-3 was a flawless affair.

    HAL Chairman R K Tyagi told OneIndia, "This is a mean machine and we have made many changes to TD-3, compared to TD-1 and TD-2. The users gave us many feedbacks and our designers were quick to respond to the challenges". "We have ensured that LCH TD-3 and TD-4 will have more ‘Made in India' systems and components including Integrated Avionics and Display System and Automatic Flight Control System. Not a single snag was reported during today's flight," he added.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    HAL LCH TD-3


    The cold weather trials of the LCH were carried out at Air Force Station, Leh in early 2015. The engine starts were satisfactory in the temperature of -18 °C at 4.1 km altitude. The flight trials at Leh have established hover performance and low speed handling characteristics of the helicopter under extreme weather conditions at different altitudes (3200 to 4800 m). During the trials, the helicopter and systems performed satisfactorily. LCH also has proven its capability to land and take off at Forward Landing Base in Siachen. LCH is the first attack helicopter to land in Forward Bases at Siachen,” said T. Suvarna Raju, CMD, HAL. The trials were carried out on the third prototype of LCH (TD-3) at Leh at the temperatures ranging from 13 to 27 degree centigrade with the participation of user pilots from air force, army and representatives from CEMILAC and DGAQA. Various tests included assessment and validation of flight envelope in ‘Hot-and-High’ conditions, culminating in landing at forward bases at geographic elevations of 13,600 feet to 15,800 feet. These landings and take-offs were demonstrated with reasonable amount of weapon load and fuel.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    LCH at Leh

    LCH TD-4 completed its maiden flight on December 1,2015. LCH now had completed performance trials paving way for certification of basic configuration and a letter to this effect was handed over to HAL by CEMILAC in the presence of Defence Minister on Oct 16, 2015.

    HAL Press Release then informed that LCH has passed rocket trials and will participate in Iron Fist Exercise. According to HAL has now satisfactorily fired Rockets (70 mm) from its prototype, TD-3 in weaponized configuration. "The initial rocket firing trials have been carried out at Jaisalmer, establishing satisfactory integration of hardware and software, structural integrity and safe separation of rocket ammunition. Integration of weapons such as Rocket, Turret Gun (20 mm) and Air to Air Missile on LCH will further continue", said HAL 's CMD T. Suvarna Raju. The LCH TD-3 was integrated with Electo-Optical (EO) System, Solid State Digital Video Recording System (SSDVR) and 70mm Rocket system in conjunction with an updated Glass Cockpit software to cater for rocket firing.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    HAL LCH TD-3 during rocket trials


    During Iron Fist 2016 HAL LCH fired rockets on simulated tanks. See HAL LCH performance at Iron Fist 2016 :

    The last buzz was that HAL LCH is undergoing weapons integration and will start weapons trials.

    “LCH is ready, we are integrating its weapons, we tried rockets and it was good, we need to try missiles ATGM — anti-tank guided missile, (these) are the ones which we are integrating and we just have to demonstrate that,” the chairman of HAL, Suvarnu Raju told The Times of India. Speaking to the Times of India, Raju also revealed that HAL is undertaking limited serial production of the LCH. “We have launched a limited series production, with a confidence and hope that we get definite orders on this. We have also inquiries on this platform from other countries, and so we will start making five helicopters this year,” Raju said.

    The Indian Army’s Army Aviation Corps (AAC) has expressed its intention of acquiring 114 helicopters and the IAF 65. However, no contract has been signed so far. “It has to turn into a contract between the Services and HAL,” according to Raju. The AAC helicopter fleet is only at 70 percent of its authorized strengths, according to the Indian Ministry of Defense. LCH is envisioned to fill that requirement. The LCH is now in an in an advanced stage of induction.

    According to media sources India is in talks with "certain" countries in Africa for possible export of the indigenous Light Combat Helicopter even as the Indian Defence Ministry has set a target of $2 billion worth of exports over the next two years. "We are in talks with certain countries in Africa who have evinced interest in the LCH. With great value for money, the helicopter is an attractive buy for many countries," a senior defence official said.

    Asked why the countries would be interested in a chopper which is yet to get final certification, the official said, "The certification is a formal process. The countries interested in the LCH in the current form do not need high features like air to air missiles. For them turret gun along with some other features work."
    [​IMG]

    Design and Airframe:-
    [​IMG]
    The aircraft was originally conceived as Light Attack Helicopter in 1989 based upon early IAF requirements. The early model has a far aft tail wheel and a stepped canopy. After a design revision in 2002 HAL moved to a fixed cannon design and a nose wheel configuration. In August 2013, IAF issued a new Air Staff requirement, and it was designated LCH and the design was approved by Defence Acquisition Council in 2006 and a mockup was displayed at Aero India 2007 with final design frozen in March 2008 .LCH is derived from the existing Dhruv Helicopter. The flight controls and hydraulics of Dhruv have been redesigned for the LCH. It will be again a wonder that the LCH was designed from Dhruv, a utility helicopter and HAL’s most successful plan which is used in other nations too, knowing the fact that both are totally different in their design as well as their role. But it is the very reality. Initially HAL had done some major changes on Dhruv to develop LAH (light attack helicopter) in Jun 2001. Later this Light Attack Helicopter’s (LAH) model was discarded and was restyled to Light Combat Helicopter (LCH) signifying light combat roles. Original slimmed-down ‘gunship’ fuselage was discarded and basic Dhruv airframe was curtained except the forward fuselage which was modified to tandem crew seating.


    Main and tail rotor diameters are 13.3m and 2.05m respectively. It has increased survivability features like Crash worthy under floor structure and Crash worthy fixed tricycle type with tail wheel landing gear. It supports some stealth features like Canted flat panels for low Radar Cross Section. Composites Manufacturing Division of HAL has carried out Monolithic & sandwich construction structural parts for LCH. Composites have been used in Rotor systems (Main Rotor Blades, Tail Rotor Blades, Hub Plates and Torque plates etc.). The excessive use of composite materials makes the airframe both light and sturdy the basic philosophy LCH wanted to achieve as a light attack helicopter. The LCH design exhibits a sleek exterior. The weapons specialist and pilot are seated in a stepped tandem arrangement cockpit with the gunner in front and the pilot at the rear.

    [​IMG]

    ( A digital MockUp of HAL LCH )
    The engine nacelles are contoured nicely along the sides of the fuselage at amidships and power a low-mounted, four-bladed main rotor mast and four-bladed tail rotor, the latter driven by a shaft running inside the empennage. The tail rotor is set to face off of the starboard side of the aircraft. The empennage is elevated in the design and requires a special rear landing gear leg for support when on the ground. The undercarriage, as a whole, consists of the rear support leg and a pair of main landing gear legs to either side of the forward fuselage. Each leg is heavily strutted for the rigors of daily operation and to absorb a full-impact crash landing. The undercarriage will remain fixed during flight as is not retractable. The empennage also fits a single vertical tail fin and horizontal planes. There are two short wingstubs for the mounting of munitions, external fuel stores and specialized equipment pods as needed.

    [​IMG]


    Its design is Stealthier than Apache and Mi-28 and is superior to other modern attack chopper like Chinese ZW 19.

    The capability of the airframe is well understood by the fact that HAL LCH ( 5800 kg ) maximum-take off weight is more than double of its empty weight ( 2250 kg ).


    Features :-
    [​IMG]
    It sports some advanced features like Anti Resonance Isolation System ( ARIS ) which helps in Vibration damping. This feature is already present in ALH Dhruv comprising of four isolator elements between the fuselage and the main gearbox. The dynamic systems of the Dhruv have been adapted in it, making it both formidable and dependable. It is equipped with four-axis auto stabilization system and anti-resonance isolation system (ARIS) for a comfortable and easy flight.

    Like the ‘Dhruv’, the LCH too adheres to the following FAR/MILSPEC standards:
    · US Army Aeronautical Design Standard-33E (ADS-33E)
    · Flaw-Tolerant Rotor System: FAR/JAR 29.571, AM 29-28
    · Crashworthy Fuel System: FAR/JAR 29.952, AM 29-35
    · Flaw-Tolerant Drive Train with Over Torque Certification: FAR/JAR 29.952, AM 29-28
    · Turbine Burst Protection: FAR/JAR 29.901, AM 29-36
    · Composite Spar Main & Tail Rotor Blades with Lightning Strike Protection: FAR/JAR 1309(h), AM 29-40
    · Engine Compartment Fire Protection: FAR/JAR 29.1193
    · Redundant Hydraulics & Flaw Tolerant Flight Controls: FAR/JAR 29.571, AM 29-28
    · Aircraft-Wide Bird Strike Protection: FAR/JAR 29.631, AM 29-40
    · Crashworthiness Standard: NATO’s MIL-STD-1290
    · Crashworthy Seats Conforming to MIL-STD-1472B
    · Cockpit Instrumentation Lighting Conforming to MIL-STD-85762A
    · Avionics Databus: MIL-STD-1553B or ARINC-429
    · Autopilot Accuracy: MIL-F-9490D
    · Embedded MIL-STD-188-141B ALE Link Protection
    · Embedded MIL-STD-188-110B data modem

    HAL LCH sports an Electronic Warfare Suite and a state-of-the-art sensor suite which includes electronic warfare suite with a radar warning receiver, laser warning receiver and missile approach warning system. The LCH’s four-axis auto-hover and digital automatic flight control system have been developed in-house, while the DRDO’s Bangalore-based Defence Avionics Research Establishment (DARE) is developing the defensive aids suite, which includes a combined radar/laser warning system (this being SaabTech’s MILDS AR-60V2) and Bharat Dynamics Ltd-developed countermeasures dispensers.

    DARE has also developed in-house the digital mission computer and pylon interface boxes. The flight control actuator system has been co-developed by HAL and the UK-based APPH. The SAGEM subsidiary of France’s SAFRAN Group, which has had a presence in India since the 1960s, has supplied the piloting inertial reference system (APIRS), more than 100 of which are already on board the Dhruv ALH. The APIRS uses new-generation inertial technologies like fibre-optic gyroscope (FOG) and silicon accelerometer. Other SAGEM-supplied items on board are the digital autopilot (which is also on the ‘Dhruv’), and the Sigma-95L RLG-INS. It will also feature a 25kg C-Music directional infra-red countermeasures (DIRCM) suite.

    HAL LCH also sports a Elbit Compact Multi Purpose Advance Stabilisation System (CoMPASS) electro-optic/infrared turret that is integrated into the nose . The CoMPASS is a day-and-night surveillance system that includes a colour TV daylight camera, third generation 3-5 µm forward-looking infrared (FLIR) sensor; laser target designator and rangefinder; and automatic tracking capabilities. It is being license built in India by Bharat Electronics Limited.
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    Last edited: Aug 27, 2017
  14. LonewolfSandeep

    LonewolfSandeep Lieutenant FULL MEMBER

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    HAL Light Combat Helicopter ( LCH ) : Light-Lethal-Multirole (Part 2 of 4)

    LCH Electronic Warfare Suite shown in the diagram

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    The similarity with Dhruv includes Integrated Dynamic Systems , transmission system , basic electrical lines replaceable units ( LRUs ) such as AC and DC power generating systems , indicators , battery junction box , control grips and fire detection systems and avionics LRUs such as communication systems ( VHF/UHF ) , cockpit voice recorders and flight data recorders. Primary changes from the Dhruv includes tandem seating, flat cockpit transparencies for reduced glint , flat faceted fuselage panels radar absorbing materials for a reduced RCS , crashworthy structure and landing gear , pressurized cockpit cabin ( with filters for NBC cabin ) , armour panels and IR engine suppressors. It also has a Digital Video Recording System ( DVRS ).

    Digital Audio Control System (DACS) onboard HAL LCH eases the Pilot’s burden by efficiently minimizing the controls, interfacing all the signals in a logical manner and provides the following functions:
    1. Intercommunication between Flight Crew and Ground Crew.
    2. Interface and control of mike and headset audio signals of various transceivers.
    3. Interface of warning signals.
    4. Interface to the Cockpit Voice Recorder and Voice Data Recorder. Digital Audio Control System (DACS) implements audio signal conditioning in digital domain using digital signal processing techniques and provides better signal quality by using efficient Adaptive Noise Cancellation

    Solid-state modular design and rugged construction provides long life, high reliability and excellent maintainability for both new and retrofit applications on fixed wing and rotary wing platforms. The DACS is a compact, lightweight and low cost system. The DACS 2300A series meets stringent MIL STD requirements like MIL STD 810F and MIL STD 461C/E.

    Non-retractable and crashworthy tricycle type landing gear has been used to eliminate the possibility of crash landing and making it easier to land on unstable platforms or terrains.
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    A datalink system transmits mission data to mobile platforms and ground stations operating within the network. Such network-centric operations facilitate the transfer of mission data to the other airborne platforms and ground stations operating in the network, facilitating force multiplication. A Automatic Flight Control Computer (AFCC) onboard LCH processes various pilot commands from pilot control unit for various mode selections, and provides indications, warnings and failure status to cockpit . Automatic Flight Control Computer (AFCC) is PowerPC-7448 based system. It has two processing channels with inter-processor synchronization and data communication, and is interfaced with various sensors, cockpit controls and actuators. It performs all the processing and computations in real time It generates commands for Series and Trim actuators, in pitch, roll, yaw and collective axes for basic control and stabilization of Light Combat Helicopter. It has built in safety functions to with-hold actuator commands in case of failure detection, and has automatic reset features to restart after removal of failures. It processes various pilot commands from pilot control unit for various mode selections, and provides indications, warnings and failure status to cockpit .

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    HAL LCH can well operate in "hot and high conditions" .In “hot and high” conditions, a helicopter operates in summertime temperatures at extreme altitudes of over 15,000 feet. In these conditions, oxygen in the air is depleted not just by the altitude, but also by the expansion of air due to high temperatures of 13-27 degrees Centigrade. This combination of conditions taxes the helicopter’s engine to the maximum. According to sources it has a “stealthy” fuselage that is hard to detect with radar. The machine is a Low Observable (LO) design with reduced visual, aural, radar and infra red signatures. The redesigned fuselage incorporates tandem seating (the two pilots in the LCH sit one behind the other), compared to side-byside in the Dhruv. The design provides lower radar cross section and the Infra Red (IR) signature due to hot exhaust gases is lowered by providing IR suppressors for the engines. A crash-resistant landing gear enables pilots to survive even when the LCH impacts the ground at 10 metres/second. To operate at high altitudes HAL LCH also has a Helicopter Oxygen System developed by DRDO . The oxygen system consists of a light weight 2 litre composite cylinder (service pressure of 200 bar) fitted with a pressure reducer cum regulator valve and a Dilution Demand Oxygen Regulator (DDOR). The DDOR supplies the breathing gas of appropriate concentration of oxygen depending on the altitude to the pilot through an oxygen mask attached to aircrew helmet. Helicopter Oxygen System has been qualified for airborne & is planned for bulk production and induction into service. [ Citation needed ].
    Cockpit :
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    The LCH has a glass cockpit accommodating two crew, who sit one behind the other. The cockpit is equipped with multifunction displays, target acquisition and designation systems, and a digital video recorder to capture footage of the battlefield for use in debriefing. A helmet-mounted target system controls the turret guns mounted on the helicopter’s fuselage.The term Glass Cockpit refers to a modern cockpit in which all the round dialled electro-mechanical instruments have been replaced with Multi-Function Displays (MFDs) and a Head Up Display (HUD). A glass cockpit uses several displays driven by flight management systems, which can be adjusted to display flight information as needed. This simplifies aircraft operation and navigation and allows pilots to focus only on the most pertinent information. The MFDs are colour Active Matrix Liquid Crystal Displays (AMLCDs) Information required by the pilot to take-off, navigate, perform his operational mission, deliver his weapons, cope with enemy threats, return to base and land is gathered by sensors on board the aircraft, processed by a mission computer and then displayed on the MFDs and HUD.


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    Light Combat Helicopter Cockpit and Displays Systems displayed at Aero India
    To make the LCH a survivable platform, HAL has designed its own impact absorbing landing gear and will improve on the Dhruv ALH’s ballistic tolerance with up to 100kg of composite-/ceramics-based modular armour, whose positioning is based on an IAF study of the areas most likely to suffer bullet damage. The tandem-seat cockpits each have twin side-by-side AMLCDs, will be NVG-compatible, will provide NBC protection to the crew, and have a ‘JedEyes’ helmet-mounted targetting system co-developed by HAL and Israel’s Elbit Systems. JedEyes is designed for day, night and brownout flight environments. JedEyes TM has a 70 x 40 degree FOV and 2250x1200 pixels resolution. JedEyes addresses the special needs of helicopter pilots and offers dramatic improvements over existing HMDs, not only through its ultra-wide Field of View (FOV), but also by providing razor-sharp, high resolution imagery and allowing pilots to take in wider than ever areas of ground and sky, with everything in sharp focus. Exciting features and unique technologies combine to provide dual vision 3D imagery on the See-Through Visor as well as processing and manipulation of a variety of visual cues and video sources such as UAVs, digital maps and on and off-board sensors.

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    A Tadiran SDR-7200AR multi-bandwidth software-defined radio, and the QuadEye panoramic night vision goggle is also on the proposed list. The IAF has also demanded that the LCH be equipped with anti-missile defence system like BAE Systems’ ‘Boldstroke’, which uses modular open-system architecture and non-proprietary standard interfaces that support interchangeability, technology insertion, and diminishing manufacturing sources resolution. It allows for direct and fibre-coupling between the laser and pointer/tracker, providing installation flexibility to meet the size, weight, and power requirements of both light and heavy rotary-winged platforms. It is much lighter, has fewer moving optical parts and uses mirrors instead of a physical ‘light pipe’ to shoot its laser. The entire unit is housed in one box. A helicopter with ‘Boldstroke’ mounted on either side would have 360 degrees of assured protection from IR-guided anti-aircraft missiles.
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    Armour :
    HAL LCH though light in its configuration is pretty well armoured to protect itself against 12.7 mm and 7.62 mm rounds.
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    Light weight Ceramic Faced Composite Armour Panels for Advanced Light Helicopter and Mi-17-IV helicopter have successfully undergone integration and flight-trials. This provides protection to aircrews and critical parts of helicopter against hits of bullets of 12.7 mm AP.
    Composite laminates were made using kevlar fabric as reinforcement and modified epoxy resin for matrix. Kevlar-epoxy composite laminates of different thicknesses were prepared by compression moulding process.
    Kevlar-epoxy composite laminates were bonded with alumina ceramic cylindrical pellets with the help of epoxy structural adhesive. Gaps between the ceramic pellets were filled with modified epoxy resin.
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    A Snap highlighting LCH armour from DRDO Newsletter
    LCH is tested against Armour piercing incendiary 12.7×108mm of Russian Heavy Machine Gun which is powerful than Western 12.7x99mm ammunition.

    Composite armour panels :
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    This makes LCH effective as both an anti-infantry and anti-armour helicopter as it can survive direct hits from Heavy Machine gun and Medium Machine Guns during a mission and return to base safely.
     
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2017
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  15. LonewolfSandeep

    LonewolfSandeep Lieutenant FULL MEMBER

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    HAL Light Combat Helicopter ( LCH ) : Light-Lethal-Multirole (Part 3 of 4)
    Armaments :

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    The weapons package of HAL LCH makes it no less than a "flying tank". Its weapon package is derived from that of HAL Rudra . It has 4 (two under each wing) hardpoints and has provisions of carrying 4 × 70/80 mm rocket-pod or 4 × two-round MISTRAL Air-to-Air Missiles or 2 x 4-round LAHAT or HELINA Anti-Tank Guided Missile or 4 × 250 kg (550 lb) bombs in varying configuration.
    1. 20mm M-621 Cannon on THL-20 Turret :
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    THL-20 Helicopter Gun Turret
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    M621 20mm cannon on a Nexter THL-20 turret

    HAL LCH sports a M621 20mm cannon on a Nexter THL-20 turret which can be cued towards the target using a helmet-mounted target system . M621 is a French 20 mm automatic cannon, designed by GIAT now known as Nexter Systems which is used on armoured vehicles, aircrafts, helicopters and small coastal vessels in France, India among other nations. Its variants include THL 20
    (Turreted cannon for helicopters) , POD NC 621 (Cannon pod for helicopters and light aircraft ) , SH20 (Door mounted cannon for helicopters ) and others. Its specifications are :-
    1.Calibre: 20×102 mm
    2.Gun Weight: 45.5 kg
    3.Gun Length: 220.7 cm
    4.Muzzle velocity: 985-1030 m/s depending on ammunition type
    5.Bore Length: 146 cm
    6.Rate of fire: 800 rpm
    7.Feed system : Open-link M12 belt
    8.Capacity: Belt fed, platform dependent capacity (160 for model 15A naval mounting, 300-750 for THL 20)

    LCH will be able to carry 800 rounds of ammunition, with an effective range of 2500 feet and can effectively ground based armoured targets and other targets.
    2. HELINA ( Helicopter launched-Nag ) Anti-Tank Guided Missile :
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    HAL Rudra launching a HELINA missile

    HELINA is the air-launched version of Prospina ( Nag ) Anti-Tank Guided Missile which has a maximum range of 7 km-8 km. It is a 3rd generation fire-and-forget type missile. It has an 8 kg tandem HEAT warhead. The Prospina is a top attack missile. During flight it when approaching the target it flies upwards and then suddenly dives towards the target. This method of attack is very suitable to destroy tanks, because most of them have only a minimum level of armor protection in the upper part of the turret. The Prospina can penetrate the latest generation armor, like explosive reactive armor and composite armor.For guidance the Prospina uses imagining infrared passive seeker system which is difficult to jam. The guidance system is also equipped with a CCD camera. Before the launch missile locks on the infrared image of the target. In flight it automatically guides itself onto the target. Hit probability with a single missile is 77%.
    The body of the missile is fully made of fiberglass structure. The rocket motor of the missile uses nitramene-based double base sustainer propellant which is smokeless and makes hard to trace the shooter. Missile has a flight speed of 230 m/s. It can be launched from twin-tube stub wing-mounted launchers on board the armed light combat helicopters and advanced light helicopters. This missile is airborne and has a lock-on-after system. India’s Defence Research & Development Laboratory (DRDL) plans to extend the range of the HELINA (Helicopter-mounted Nag) anti-armour missile into a >20-km range strike munition for combat aircraft and helicopters. HELINA project director KS Vara Prasad has indicated that his team is building a “miniaturised inertial navigation package” to enhance the existing weapon without adding weight or too much cost.

    HELINA being fired from HAL Rudra :

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    However HELINA is still under development is not likely to be ready in near future leaving a critical void in operational capability of its firepower.Indian army chief General Bipin Rawat speaking to media has lambasted that both Indigenous Attack/combat helicopters HAL Rudra and HAL Light Combat Helicopter have major shortcomings, that is in their current configuration both do not have suitable anti-tank guided missile (ATGM), which is the main weapon of any Attack/combat helicopters around the world.

    Reportedly Dhruvastra twin-rail launcher will be used for HELINA missile which was show cased at Aero India 2017.
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    Besides here is the animation of HELINA missile :

    3. LAHAT ( (Laser Homing Attack or Laser Homing Anti-Tank ) Anti-Tank Guided Missile :
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    LAser Homing Attack Missile, or LAHAT, is an advanced missile developed and manufactured by the MBT Division of Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI). It is a light weight missile suitable for precision attack missions.
    The gun or canister launched missile can be fired from a range of platforms such as armoured vehicles, tanks and helicopters. The missile is effectively used in urban areas requiring a low collateral damage solution. It can hit both stationed and moving targets while avoiding the air defence of hostile forces.
    LAHAT has a length of 975mm, diameter of 104.5mm and a weight of 12.5kg. A LAHAT launcher equipped with four missiles weighs less than 80kg. The compact dimensions of the missile allow easy integration on light-weight helicopters, light vehicles and armoured fighting vehicles (AFVs).

    Launching of LAHAT requires minimal exposure in the firing position. The commander's sight is provided with LRF / laser designator to maintain line of sight to the target during the flight of the missile.
    The detection of firing position is very difficult due to low launch signature of the missile. The trajectory can be set to match either top attack or direct attack engagements. LAHAT has a semi-active laser guidance system using direct and indirect laser designation. The missile uses a tandem warhead which is capable of defeating all types of modern armour, including add-on reactive armour. High penetration capability of the main warhead allows the missile to penetrate the armour of major armoured vehicles at high impact angles.

    It has a speed of 285–300 m/s and has a range of 8000 m- 13000 m from an air-launched platform. It has a 10 kg warhead which can defeat armour of Main Battle Tanks.
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    LAHAT was also planned for Indian Arjun Main Battle Tank but that plans were dropped for an indigenous Cannon-Launched Guided Missile. Here is a great video on the capacity of LAHAT Missile :

    4. Mistral ATAM ( Air-to-Air Mistral ) Air-to-Air Missile :
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    MISTRAL ATAM is based on the MISTRAL missile with its fire-and-forget engagement mode, ease of operation and unrivalled kill probability.
    The system is based on two launchers, each bearing two missiles and can be connected to the helicopter’s combat system, when mounted on combat helicopters, or through simplified control equipment if installed on multi-purpose helicopters.
    In both cases, it is characterised by simplicity of operation, a very low crew workload and a high level of performance.
    The system can be operated within the whole flight envelope of the launch helicopter, at speeds of up to 200 knots and at altitudes exceeding 15,000 ft. Its specifications are :

    • Weight : 18.7 kg
    • Length : 1.86 m
    • Diameter : 90 mm
    • Maximum intercept range : 6.5 km
    • Minimum intercept range : 500 m
    MISTRAL ATAM ensures a large off-boresight capability, together with the ability to aim the missile seeker very precisely at a given target.
    The missile has a shaped trajectory in order to intercept targets top-down or at long range, the crew can also select the proximity fuze mode.
    MISTRAL ATAM is currently the only helicopter mounted air-to-air missile in full operational service.
    MISTRAL ATAM is operated by the French Army Aviation on the Gazelle and is also in service on the Tiger attack helicopter. It has also been integrated upon HAL Rudra.
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    Mistral ATAM ( Air-to-Air Mistral) are currently being integrated into HAL’s Light Combat Helicopter (LCH) and are on schedule confirmed MBDA spokesman to Flightglobal. Mistral ATAM already has been integrated into Dhruv Mk IV Weapon System Integrated (WSI) and also has been test fired from Dhruv Mk IV successfully. Mistral ATAM with its fire-and-forget engagement mode, ease of operation and unrivalled kill probability ( about 95 % ) makes LCH quite a formidable platform against aerial targets.

    5. Unguided Rockets :
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    LCH is armed with 4 stub-wing mounted Forges de Zeebrugge built rocket launcher FZ-231 carrying 70mm (2.75“) rockets.
    It can be used in wide number of roles :
    • Attack
    • Ground fire support
    • Armed reconnaissance
    • Air-to-ground combat
    • Close air support
    • Anti-infantry
    • Anti-armour
    This launcher has a versatile firing control system and this 70 mm unguided rocket system (change of rocket type without change of any fixed part on helicopter ) acn be mixed loaded with different types of warheads.
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    6. Iron Cluster Bombs and Anti-Radiation Missile :

    According to official database , HAL LCH will also carry 4 x 250 kg bombs which include gravity bombs, cluster bombs and grenade launchers. Also it will carry Anti-Radiation Missile which is unclear as which ARM will it carry (
    currently DRDO NGARM is indigenously being developed in India ).
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    A HAL LCH TD-2 under construction
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    An earlier mockup of HAL LCH


    Capability :-

    HAL LCH in short is nothing less than a "flying tank" able to operate at nearly every terrain which most modern attack helicopters are not capable off. The LCH, which made its maiden flight in May 2010, has been specifically developed in response to the lack of an attack helicopter capable of performing high-altitude operations during the 1999 Kargil War. Compared to other Light combat Helicopter platforms like Chinese Z-19 and Eurocopter Tiger , the LCH is designed for Indian conditions, to conduct operations in High Altitudes like Leh and low altitudes like Thar, Rajastan also it can perform missions in Minus zero degree Ladakh’s to hot Thar conditions.

    HAL LCH during “hot and high” trials in Ladakh made the world record when it flew at one of the worlds highest landing bases located in Siachen with a decent weapons payload. The attack helicopter scaled an altitude of 4.8 kms from sea level to one of the most remote, inhospitable environment known to human beings. With deployment of LCH in this region it will tilt the favour of any army to defeat their enemy in high altitude region especially AH-1 Cobra of Pakistan and Chinese Z-19 and Z-10 which can operate at such high altitudes.
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    (Retd) Wing Commander, Unni Pillai, Chief Test Pilot, HAL told that: “We have a particular operating environment and we are the best people to make as per our requirement. American machines don’t have a requirement to operate above 10,000-12,000 feet. Hence to enhance our operation capabilities, it is important we make in our country.” Speaking on its digital camouflage system he spoke ,"impossible for it to be seen through any thermal image devices".

    LCH TD-3 showing off its “Splinter” paint scheme at Aero India 2015 :
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    TD-3 which was part of Aero India 2015 got high praise for its new paint scheme from its visitors . “Splinter” pattern was also seen on Russia’s 5th generation Pak-Fa fighter aircraft Prototypes . Splinter camouflaged paint scheme was made famous by Russians on their aircrafts which has ability to blend aircraft in Weather conditions depending on paint colours used for particular weather conditions or Natural geographical surroundings of operations. “Splinter” pattern have smaller, sharp-edged patches and can use two or three color camouflage to make them visually difficult to spot in air . Splinter camouflaged paint scheme is now also catching up with Western aircraft types which are also moving away from Single paint schemes lately .

    HAL LCH carries many aerodynamic changes to reduce drag and flight performances which was highlighted during prototypes stage. The LCH can fly to extreme angles of 70 degree-80 degree nose down, demonstrating high maneuverability. Dr.Prasad Sampath general manager of RWDC, claimed the LCH , "probabaly the most agile design in the world because of its rotor". Its main rotor with swept blade tips gives it good maneuverability. At higher altitudes which is LCH-dominated LCH will turn out to be more agile and have higher performance than legacy attack helicopters in general because it is custom-designed to fight at higher altitudes.


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    By capacity, LCH is multirole as LCH is expected to play a major role in air defence against slow moving aerial targets, destruction of enemy air defence operations, escort to special heliborne operations, support of combat search and rescue operations, anti-tank role and scout duties. According to broucher , LCH is able to execute air defence role operations against slow moving targets like UAVs , DEAD ops along with Escort to Special Heliborne Operations and offensive employment in Urban Warfare and Counter-Surface Force Operations and COIN operations along with support of combat SAR operations. It can take off from an altitude of 10,000 feet, operate weapons at 16,300 feet, and engage targets like UAVs that are flying at altitudes of up to 21,300 feet.

    In the anarchy of the modern battlefield, the attack helicopter is the ultimate predator. Operating from a forward base --- usually a small square of synthetic material tacked down onto a clearing in the fields --- the attack helicopter flies missions against enemy tanks, which are spotted by friendly scout helicopters and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). Flying barely 20 feet above the ground, the attack helicopters close in with the enemy, often with rifle and machine-gun bullets spattering against their armoured bodies. Then popping up from behind a tree line, they fire missiles and rockets to destroy their targets; meanwhile sophisticated onboard electronics confuse the enemy’s radars for the couple of minutes it takes to finish the job. Then it’s back to the base to refuel and rearm, patch up the bullet holes, and leave for another mission against another target. LCH is well a cut above than its traditional rivals in such roles.
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    Last edited: Aug 27, 2017

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