In a major boost to India’s air power capability, the Indian Air Force (IAF) Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal Rakesh Kumar Singh Bhadauria takes a sortie of HAL’s home-grown Light Combat Helicopter ahead of its induction into the armed forces. IAF Chief RKS Bhadauria took a sortie in the indigenous Light Combat Helicopter (LCH) in Bengaluru today. The sortie lasted for 45 minutes.
Designed and developed by the city-based state-run defence behemoth (HAL)
Good Look At Sensors
The Air Chief was airborne for an hour during his maiden flight sortie as a co-pilot, dressed in an olive green suit. “It was a very good sortie. I was able to look at the important flying characteristics and status of sensors installed,” said Bhadauria in a statement later.
Flying With The Best
“Bhadauria flew the twin-seater LCH for the first time, taking off at 11:45 am from our airport in the city’s eastern suburb, with our deputy chief test pilot Wing Commander (Retd) S.P. John,” a Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) official told IANS.
Also Flew LCA Tejas
IAF Chief RKS Bhadauria, who took over as the Indian Air Force (IAF) in September 2019, also flew the HAL-made Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Tejas on May 27, 2020 when it was inducted into the IAF’s 18 Squadron (Flying Bullets) at the Sulur air base near Coimbatore.
World’s Lightest Multi-Role Attack Helicopter
LCH is the world’s lightest multi-role attack helicopter, with the highest flight ceiling.
Proposal For The Initial Batch Of 15 LCHs
The Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) had approved the proposal for the initial batch of 15 LCHs.
LCH’s 1st Prototype Test Flown On March 2010
Drawing from the company’s multi-role Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH) Dhruv and its ωɛλρσɳised version Rudra, LCH’s first prototype was test flown on March 2010.
Noting that the LCH was a potent platform due to excellent design and development efforts and well-supported flight test team, the Air Chief said the IAF was looking forward to its induction soon. “I am sure HAL will give required focus on its production at a fast pace,” Bhadauria said.