The Power of India's Self-Made Light Combat Helicopter


The Power of India's Self-Made Light Combat Helicopter
HAL-made Light Combat Helicopter

International Military - India's defense industry is now advancing rapidly over time. Recently, India has successfully sold BrahMos missiles and won contracts of up to hundreds of millions of dollars. India is also currently developing its newest generation of fighter jets independently.

It doesn't stop there, the success of the Indian industry can also be seen from the presence of locally made light combat helicopters. To further strengthen its defenses, India has just approved the procurement of 15 light combat helicopters.

According to the Indian Air Force's official Twitter account @IAF_MCC, the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) led by the prime minister recently approved the procurement of 15 locally developed light combat helicopters (LCH). The procurement of the light combat helicopters will cost about 500 million dollars.

The light helicopters were purchased at a time when India was focusing on improving their overall offensive capabilities in light of the various safety issues that New Delhi is currently experiencing. Especially the issue of border disputes with China and India's ongoing hostility with Pakistan.

On the social media account it was stated that out of a total of 15 helicopters, the Indian Air Force will get 10 units while the Army will receive 5 units. The light combat helicopters will be manufactured by the state-run Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL).

The defense ministry said the helicopter will be a robust system and suit the operational needs of the Indian Air Force and Indian Army. The helicopter's capabilities were tested during a long flight campaign from a high-altitude base in the Himalayas. The helicopter was judged to have all the necessary skills to operate in Siachen.

Reporting from the Eurasian Times, in 2006, the company HAL revealed its intention to develop a light combat helicopter capable of operating in both conditions.

HAL wants its helicopter to operate in the harsh desert and highlands of Ladakh, including the Siachen Glacier. The helicopter underwent several delays before finally making its maiden test flight in 2010.

In January 2019, the helicopter successfully completed weapons testing and was certified ready for operational induction by the HAL company in February 2020. The helicopters made by HAL are equipped with various stealth features and have armor protection. The helicopters are also capable of launching attacks at night and using appropriate landing gear for collisions.

The Indian LCH has a maximum take-off weight of 5,800 kg and is propelled by two Shakti engines. The helicopter's range is 550 km with an operational altitude of 6.5 km and a top speed of 268 km/hour. The Indian helicopter can carry 20 mm cannon and 70 mm rockets as well as air-to-air and air-to-ground missiles.

The LCH also has a full glass cockpit, an Electronic Warfare suite and a helmet-mounted display for the pilot. LCH is very suitable for anti-tank missions because it can fly low and fast to attack and destroy the opponent's armor column.

According to HAL, the helicopter is also suitable for scouting missions, where it can fly in front of army lines and detect enemy positions. Apart from serving in air defense duties, light combat helicopters can also destroy enemy air defense assets.

This helicopter is also capable of performing urban warfare missions and combat search and rescue missions. The existence of light helicopters is proof that India is able to be at the forefront of aircraft development.

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