KA-226T Utility Helicopters
Part of: GS Prelims and GS- III – Defence and Security
- KA-226T Utility Helicopters were in news recently.
- The total indigenous content of the Ka-226T utility helicopters, to be jointly manufactured locally by India and Russia with Transfer of Technology (ToT), is between 27%-33%.
- The Ka-226T is meant to replace the aging and obsolete Cheetah and Chetak fleet of the Army and Air Force and the total technical life of these will start finishing from 2023 onwards.
- The helicopters would be manufactured by India Russia Helicopters Limited (IRHL) — a joint venture between HAL and Russian Helicopters.
- In 2015, India and Russia had concluded an Inter-Governmental Agreement (IGA) for at least 200 Ka-226T twin-engine utility helicopters estimated to cost over $1 billion with 60 helicopters to be directly imported and the the remaining 140 to be manufactured locally.
- The first helicopter would be delivered within 36 months from the signing of the contract.
- As per the Russian proposal, the localization plan would be spread over four phases, beginning with 3.3% indigenisation for 35 helicopters, going up to 15% for the next 25 helicopters, 35% for 30 helicopters in Phase 3, and eventually to 62.4% indigenisation in Phase 4 for the last 50 helicopters.