Tag Archives: India

Firm Indian order for 50 E-Jet E2s

Computer rendering of the Air Costa E190-E2 (Image © Embraer)
Computer rendering of the Air Costa E190-E2 (Image © Embraer)

India’s Air Costa placed a firm order for 50 Embraer E-Jet E2s with an additional 50 purchase rights on 13 February 2014.

The acquisition is a mix of 25 E190-E2s and 25 E195-E2s and has an estimated value of USD 2.94 billion based on 2014 list prices. The purchase rights are for an additional 25 E190-E2s and 25 E195-E2s, bringing the total potential order to up to 100 aircraft and can reach USD 5.88 billion if all are exercised.

Air Costa’s has pushed Embraers E-Jet order book to 200 since the E2 program was launched in June 2013. Air Costa will take delivery of the E190-E2 in 2018. The E195-E2 is scheduled to enter service in 2019. Today, the airline flies four E-Jets: two E170s and two E190s. Air Costa is based out of Vijayawada, Andhra Pradesh.

Air Costa (www.aircosta.in) is currently connecting cities in southern India such as Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad and Vijayawada, as well as key secondary cities in the North and Northwest of the country.

Air Costa’s E2s will feature new-design cabins. The E190-E2 will be configured with 98 seats in dual class layout, with six seats in first class, and the E195-E2 with 118 seats, with 12 seats in the first class.

Source: Embraer

Green light for A380 ops in India

Maiden flight of first Qatar Airways A380 from Toulouse, Sept. 9 (Image P. Pigeyre / EM company © Airbus)
An Airbus A380 seen during a test flight from the Toulouse factory. (Image P. Pigeyre / EM company © Airbus)

The Indian Ministry of Civil Aviation has approved operations of the Airbus A380 in India, it is reported on Monday 27 January. The type was previously banned from India as a protectionary measure to domestic airlines.

“This is good news for Indian airports and the Indian flying public. The A380 is the world’s most fuel efficient aircraft in service with the lowest operating costs per seat and the highest revenue generating potential which benefits the airlines and the travelling public. For the Indian flying public, the A380 offers the world’s most comfortable flying experience,” said Dr. Kiran Rao, Airbus EVP Strategy and Marketing.

A booming economy, a growing middle classe, migration, urbanisation and tourism are all factors pushing India to become one of the world’s fastest growing aviation markets.  Larger aircraft like the A380 combined with higher load factors make the most efficient use of limited airport slots and contribute to rising passenger numbers without additional flights to capture this growth.

So far, over 120 A380s have been delivered to 10 of the world’s leading airlines. Over 50 million passengers have enjoyed the A380 flying experience and the fleet has accumulated some 150,000 flights and over 1.2 million flight hours. The A380 has visited nearly 160 airports of all sizes and in all continents of the world.

Source: Airbus

India longs for more C-17 Globemasters

The third Boeing C-17 Globemaster III leaving the factory plant at Long Beach for India at August 20th, 2013 (Image © Boeing)
The third Boeing C-17 Globemaster III leaving the factory plant at Long Beach for India at August 20th, 2013 (Image © Boeing)

According to several Indian news sources, the country is eying seven extra C-17 Globemaster transport aircraft on top of ten aircraft already ordered. Only last month, the Indian Air Force introduced the first of its C-17s into service.

Indian Air Force Chief Marshal NAK Browne is quoted as saying the air force wants to add seven more C-17 heavy-lift aircraft to its fleet. He is also confirmed again an additional six C-130J Hercules aircraft are on the wishlist, as AIRheads↑Fly reported on September 16th.

But there’s even more: “Also in the pipeline is the procurement of 45 Medium Transport Aircraft, presently, under joint development between Hindustan Aeronautics Limited and Russia,” he said in an interview with Defence Ministry’s Sainik Samachar magazine.

The words of the Air Chief mean good news for Boeing. The company has seen the end of production of C-17s closing in several times. The US Air Force is the biggest customer for the C-17, but recently the final US-example was delivered to the 437th AW at Charleston AFB.

Boeing disclosed then that it will build 15 extra C-17s, but did not a customer for those aircraft. The seven extra Indian aircraft may well be among those 15 extra C-17s to be produced at the Boeing plant in Long Beach.

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Check out the Indian Air Force Orbat at Scramble.nl

India buys 6 more C-130Js

Delivery flight of a Indian Air Force C-130J Super Hercules with registration KC-3804 of the first batch in 2010 (Image © Lockheed-Martin)
Delivery flight of a Indian Air Force C-130J Super Hercules with registration KC-3804 of the first batch in 2010 (Image © Lockheed-Martin)

UPDATE 2 JANUARY 2013: India officially signed the deal for the six new C-130Js, at a price of US$1.1 billion.

India is to buy an additional six C-130J Super Hercules aircraft from Lockheed Martin, once the Indian cabinet council for Security and the US government has given the final administration approvals.

The Indian Defence Ministry already gave the green light, as reported by Indian media last weekend. India has currently six C-130Js, with the first delivered on December 16, 2010. They fly with 77 Squadron out of Hindon Airbase.

The Defence Ministry wants to base the second batch of the American made tactical transport aircraft at Panagarh in West Bengal. There are also plans to base a special mountain battle group there to protect the area adjacent to the border with China. The Super Hercules would have to support that strike group, which will mean anything from transporting bulk loads up to the insertion of paratroop commandos.

India is said to be very pleased with the operational characteristics of the C-130J in difficult conditions in mountainous terrain, like when the airplanes were deployed recently for disaster relief in flood-hit areas, a secundary task of the transport fleet.

The earlier C-130J deal between the US/Lockheed Martin included training of aircrew, maintenance, spare parts, ground support, test equipment, servicing carts, forklifts, loading vehicles, cargo pallets, special operations equipment and a three year on-site support by Lockheed Martin personnel. The framework of the second deal is still uncertain.

The C-130J is powered by four Rolls Royce AE2100 engines and Dowty six bladed props which provide the aircraft with a relative large amount of power. It has a crew of two pilots plus a loadmaster. The Super Hercules can carry up to 92 passengers, 64 paratroopers, 6 cargo pallets, two to three terrain vehicles or one smaller armoured personnel carrier.

The normal cruise speed is 348 knots and the effective range 3,262 miles (5,250 km). With an effective payload (42,000 pounds/19,000 kg) it can operate up to 28,000 feet.

© 2013 AIRheads’ Marcel Burger

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Check out the Indian Air Force Orbat at Scramble.nl