Savunma ve Stratejik Analizler

31 Mart 2010 Çarşamba

India's Light Combat Copter Makes First Flight

As the helicopter taxied slowly along the airstrip, a little knot of designers and executives from Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) watched silently, the sweat beads on their foreheads from more than just the Bangalore heat. March 29 had been selected for a landmark attempt: The first flight of the indigenous Light Combat Helicopter (LCH). Already a year late, and facing criticism for having gone several hundred kilograms overweight, the LCH had much to prove.
Attack helicopters involve the most complex aeronautical, stealth, sensor and weapons technologies. HAL’s state-of-the-art LCH aims to gatecrash an exclusive club of light attack helicopters that includes Eurocopter’s Tiger and China’s ultra-secret Zhisheng-10 (Z-10). In high-altitude performance, the LCH will be in a class by itself: Taking off from Himalayan altitudes of 10,000 feet, operating rockets and guns up to 16,300 feet, and launching missiles at UAVs flying at over 21,000 feet.
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