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HAL LUH / Ka-226: News and Discussions

Discussion in 'Indian Air Force' started by Gessler, Sep 6, 2016.

  1. Sancho

    Sancho Lt. Colonel Technical Analyst

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    That's not correct, HAL was always meant to do the licence production, but then the tender was re-issued with the requirement to team up with Indian industry, including HAL. The Russians just chose to do it with HAL, since they have long pending relations with them.
    The problem with the LUH however is, that both governments unnecessarily delayed it and that it was a political decision at the end, although 2 tenders showed IA/IAF preference for the Fennec.
     
  2. Agent_47

    Agent_47 Admin - Blog IDF NewBie

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  3. An Indian

    An Indian 2nd Lieutant FULL MEMBER

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    For whatever it's worth. Here's feedback for HAL on the ALH. The person making these comments is a VERY experienced flyer. He flew choppers in Kargil and has since retired. He has also flown many, many hours on the ALH in Pawan Hans...

    The context of this feedback was:
    A FB post:
    [​IMG]

    The nation has the right to information too

    On the 4th of July we lost a very dear friend in a tragic helicopter crash during a flood rescue operation in Arunachal Pradesh. Wing Commander Mandeep Singh Dhillon. The reason I am posting this here... is because the media will report loss of a machine in the 5th page of some newspaper, in a ticker in some news channel, but the story of MS Dhillon must be told...

    He was commanding the Helicopter Unit at Tezpur, and had over 18 years of flying experience in varied terrain, from icy mountains to the jungles of North East India.

    With his death, not only has India lost a brave son but his family and friends have lost a true friend, gentleman and a buddy. Dhillon would always say things the way they should be told. His lazy nasal voice was signature to him. His warm smile would make you reflect it every-time you saw it.

    Never shying away from his core job, was always enthusiastic about his passion and profession. On 04 July 2017 before he went down for the final time, he had already made five sorties and had rescued 169 stranded people.

    All of us who have known him in person are devastated and in shock to say the least. More strength to his family.

    Today, with the prevalent scenario while we are forever ready to pounce on our armed forces for the smallest thing, I just wanted to bring to the forefront, our sons, brothers, friends are continuing to lay their lives for the nation. Media will never tell us this... But the citizens have a right to know.


    And the feedback was:
    BTW, this guy was a junior of the <flyer>...

    <flyer>: It's really a sad day that we lost him in this manner, ALH has had mishap of similar kind which really is thought provoking, about their safety, all the ALH in the defence forces should be grounded and a through check must be undertaken especially where the MGB and the ENGINES are attached to the fuselage.....!! If the checks are not done we will lose people especially when the aircraft is subjected to Max power limits, ONLY GOD CAN HELP US if HAL and the Indian defence forces (who have been forced to buy these flying coffins) don't look sharp..... ITS REALLY AWFUL......!!

    <Friend>: Is the ALH as bad as that. I thought it was a good aircraft?
    <flyer>Yes it is. It is an unreliable aircraft. Too many maintenance issues and with that weak fuselage and too powerful engine and ancillary parts, which could wrench out if excessive power is used.

    <Friend> [​IMG]:-( I would have expected HAL to have rectified these issues pretty quickly...
    I assume you have flown some if the recent models and these are lingering issues. Is that right?

    <flyer>It's an intrensic problem where they would need to toughen the connecting points which would affect the fuselage structure and the AUW(all up weight) it would incur a lot of weight reconfiguration affecting CG. Probably a long drawn process, not a two day job.

    <Friend> Hmmmm... I see what you mean - this is worrying. This might actually limit its flying in the Glacier which is where it is needed the most.
     
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  4. An Indian

    An Indian 2nd Lieutant FULL MEMBER

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    My intention of posting this is not to pull HAL down but to clearly flag an issue that flyers have. We have at least one documented death because of this. Yes, this looks like a design change but I hope HAL picks up the gauntlet and fixes it.

    India does need to have our own chopper initiative and so let's get the issues fixed and release the next gen ALH.
     
  5. Abingdonboy

    Abingdonboy Major Technical Analyst

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    Sorry but I do NOT buy this, these issues may have been present in the early models (Mk.1 and 2) but with the Mk.3 ( the model that was lost recently) there's no way such fundamental design issues exist. The ALH has now been given uprated engines and has been proven in Siachin so if there really was an issue with the MGB and engine mountings especially at full/high power we would be hearing about many many more problems. With delays in the RSH/LUH procurement, more ALHs are actually being employed at high altitudes and now even Rudra units are being set up at altitude, clearly the armed forces are not acting upon and perceived weakness in the design. Even the IAF's helicopter display team flies (Mk.2) ALHs, almost all of their displays are done at high power settings and they have not had any ongoing issues at least not continual failures.

    Furthermore, HAL has recently signed a Performance Based Logistics (PBL) agreement with the IN and ICG for their new Mk.3s that will deliver 75% assured availability so clearly (with proper maintainence) the aircraft can provide world class availability rates also.

    We all know the armed forces have high standards, they would simply never order a product that was inherently unsafe and yet with each passing year they are placing more and more orders.
     
  6. Abingdonboy

    Abingdonboy Major Technical Analyst

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    Deliveries of Russian Kamov KA-226T helicopters to start "soon"

    Deliveries of Russian Kamov KA-226 helicopters is expected to start after two years of the final contract.


    https://www.newsfolo.com/india/deliveries-russian-kamov-ka-226t-helicopters-start-soon/12734/


    No final contract as of now, it may come later this year so this is not going to happen:

    Russian Ka-226T production in India could begin in 2017
    https://in.rbth.com/economics/defen...roduction-in-india-could-begin-in-2017_586567


    @Guynextdoor please explain to me once again why this is a worthwhile deal?

    - Ka-226 will come around the same time HAL LUH enters production (2019/20)
    - Ka-226 will cost more (supposedly 200% more) than HAL LUH
    -Ka-226 has higher operational costs than HAL LUH
    - HAL LUH has great commonality with HAL ALH and LCH
    - Ka-226 will NOT be made with a private player now but with HAL
    -Ka-226 deal will require a vast number of contracts with third party entities
    - Ka-226 assembly in India will be done in existing facilities with exsiting human resources so minimal greenfield investment will come to India and minimal new jobs will be created
    -Operating a mixed fleet is always more expensive than operating a common platform


    Meanwhile HAL has created a greenfield facility with an installed capacity (beyond 2022/3) to produce 60 LUH/year.


    Had the Russians opted to tie up with a private player this deal may have been platable, at least there would have been valuble expertise being built up outside of the public sector but there isn't even that crumb of comfort. The Russians have effectively cheated India out of any meaningful investments and entirely side-stepped the entire "Make in India" policy ambition, it is literally the worst of all outcomes.

    Let us not forget that the FENNEC was declared the L1 under the RSH tender and that Airbus Military has tied up with Mahindra to produce the helo in India, this would have been the FAR more logical and fruitful choice for both industry and the services.
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2017
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  7. Agent_47

    Agent_47 Admin - Blog IDF NewBie

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  8. An Indian

    An Indian 2nd Lieutant FULL MEMBER

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    Essentially you are saying there's PROBABLY no problems with the Mk.3 I hope you are right. I'll be happy if you are right as so do I want the ALH to be flying well and safely.

    I would not have posted this if I was not EXTREMELY sure of the flying capabilities of the person who gave this feedback - he's logged many, many 1000s of hrs on choppers in various environments in India. I don't know if the Mk.3s were given to Pawan Hans since his experience is limited to the ALHs with Pawan Hans. IAF didn't have LCH/ALHs till recently. Incidentally, he has had problems with the ALH and has been able to recover.

    My point is - if there are indeed problems with the Mk.3, then it is better to accept the feedback in the spirit is is given and rectify it. If the problems have been fixed, then I'm glad.
     
  9. Abingdonboy

    Abingdonboy Major Technical Analyst

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    Pawan Hans has not had ANY ALH in their fleet so far, they are going to or recently have ordered 10 Mk.3 ALHs but they won't be with them until next year or the year after.
     
  10. An Indian

    An Indian 2nd Lieutant FULL MEMBER

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    OK. Hold on. Let me check back with him and get back to you.
     
  11. Abingdonboy

    Abingdonboy Major Technical Analyst

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    See for yourself:

    NEW DELHI: State-owned Pawan Hans Helicopters Ltd (PHL) is likely to become the first company to commercially operate Dhruv helicopters, which is manufactured by Hindustan Aeronauticals Ltd (HAL) and currently being used only by the military.

    PHL and HAL signed intent of cooperation for induction of 10 advance Dhruv MK III Helicopter s in the fleet of PawanHans in Bengaluru today.


    http://economictimes.indiatimes.com...ofinterest&utm_medium=text&utm_campaign=cppst


    This is from Feb 2017, clearly the units have not been inducted by PH yet.
     
  12. An Indian

    An Indian 2nd Lieutant FULL MEMBER

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    Hold on, need to reach him and confirm this.

    I remember him talking to me over the past few years talking about flying the ALH while he was at Pawan Hans - I remember he wasn't exactly thrilled with the aircraft. He mentioned Gharchiroli and Port Blair multiple times - I'm pretty sure it was the ALH as he mentioned it multiple times. He mentioned he had a minor issue at Gharchiroli and we were worried as all that is Naxal area. Our other fear was that Pawan Hans lost 3 choppers while he was with them and I understand that was because of poor maintenance (compared to the fauj, seems their maintenance is not as good).

    Like you say, this is second hand info - let me get hard data from him. This much I can say since I know him well - he will not bad mouth an aircraft unless he really has seen a technical issue.
     
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  13. An Indian

    An Indian 2nd Lieutant FULL MEMBER

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    OK. So I talked to him. Pawan Hans has Mk.1s with Undercarriages... These have been in operation for more than 5 years now.
     
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  14. ashkum2278

    ashkum2278 2nd Lieutant FULL MEMBER

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    Ka-226T : Russia’s Unique Modular Helicopter - Why India Love This Helicopter

     
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  15. ashkum2278

    ashkum2278 2nd Lieutant FULL MEMBER

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    Got this from a reply on PKSG Blog Trishul on KA-226 : Dated Sep 13

    BTW, the IAF has conveyed to the MoD that it will NOT be able to procure either the HTT-40 BTT or the Ka-226T. The IA too has conveyed that service-induction of the Ka-226T is a no-go. Hence, to mollify the Ruskies, an additional tranche of about 60 Mi-17V-5s will be ordered in future. In addition, the contract for A330-220s for serving as AEW & CS platforms will be inked ASAP.

    September 13, 2017 at 11:14 PM

    Is this true? What is your take on this?

    Source : https://www.blogger.com/comment.g?blogID=3545138702780178046&postID=4141263385257268942

    @PARIKRAMA @Abingdonboy @Ankit Kumar 001 @nair @Agent_47 @Picard @Picdelamirand-oil @vstol jockey @Gessler @randomradio @MilSpec @BON PLAN @CNL-PN-AA @Robinhood Pandey @Levina @Hellfire @GuardianRED @halloweene @IAF Fan @kaku @ashkum2278 @Nilgiri @Sancho @X_Killer @Angel Eyes@lca-fan @all others
     

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