Aero India Set To Take Off, Dazzling Aerial Displays On The Cards
The 14th edition of India’s largest aerospace and defence exhibition, Aero India, takes off here on Monday with inauguration by Prime Minister Narendra Modi bolstering ‘Make in India’ campaign and giving a fresh impetus to the domestic aviation sector.
The five-day event will include aerial displays by aircraft and helicopters along with a large exhibition and trade fair of aerospace and defence companies.
As many as 809 exhibitors, including 110 foreign ones, have confirmed their participation at the show at Air Force Station Yelahanka, which is being positioned as a platform for ‘Make in India for the world’, defence officials said.
U.S. Embassy Chargé d’Affaires Ambassador Elizabeth Jones will lead the largest-ever U.S. delegation to Aero India.
“As India modernises its defence capabilities, certainly we want to be the partner of choice. We are increasingly focused on mutually beneficial co-production and co-development partnerships,” she said.
A premier exhibition in the global aviation industry, Aero India is held biennially in a total area of around 35,000 sqm, providing opportunity to the industry to showcase its capabilities, products and services.
Defence Research and Development Organisation-developed Medium Altitude Long Endurance class unmanned aerial vehicle TAPAS-BH (Tactical Aerial Platform for Advanced Surveillance – Beyond Horizon) will make its flying debut at Aero India.
“TAPAS is DRDO’s solution to the tri services ISTAR (intelligence, surveillance, target acquisition, and reconnaissance) requirements. The UAV is capable of operating at altitudes up to 28000 feet, with an endurance of 18 plus hours”, according to DRDO.
TAPAS-BH, which would make its first public flight, can carry a variety of payloads up to a maximum of 350 kgs, DRDO officials said.
The DRDO pavilion will showcase over 330 products categorised into 12 zones including Combat Aircraft & UAVs, Missiles & Strategic Systems, Engine & Propulsion Systems, Airborne Surveillance Systems, and Sensors Electronic Warfare & Communication Systems, it was stated.
The Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. will display a ‘Aatmanirbhar Formation’ flight of 15 helicopters consisting of all variants of Advanced Light Helicopter, ‘Prachand’ Light Combat Helicopter, and Light Utility Helicopter.
The Ministry of Defence is organising a ‘CEOs Round Table’ on Feb. 13, under the chairmanship of Minister of Defence, Rajnath Singh.
The platform, with theme “Sky is not the limit: opportunities beyond boundaries”, is expected to lay the foundation of a more robust interaction between the industry partners and government with an eye on bolstering the ‘Make-in India’ campaign, officials said.
The Round Table will see participation from officials, delegates and global CEOs from 26 countries including global investors such as Boeing, Lockheed, Israel Aerospace Industries, General Atomics, Liebherr Group, Raytheon Technologies, Safran, and General Authority of Military Industries.
Domestic PSUs like HAL, Bharat Electronics Ltd., Bharat Dynamics Ltd., BEML Ltd., and MishraDhatu Nigam Ltd. will also participate in the Round Table.
Premier private defence and aerospace manufacturing companies from India such as Larsen & Toubro Ltd., Bharat Forge Ltd., Dynamitic Technologies Ltd., and BrahMos Aerosapce Ltd. are also likely to be part of the event.
This would engage industries for co-development and co-production to make India a commercial manufacturing hub and base for global product support, officials said. “It will explore Indian and Global markets; create opportunities for industries to not just ‘Make in India’, but ‘Make in India’ for the world”, they said.
This year, the exhibition is expected to be the biggest airshow with the highest rate of participation and will feature top international think-tanks, major aerospace companies and world leaders, according to Defence Ministry.