More on the Light Combat Helicopter (LCH) - Broadsword by Ajai Shukla - Strategy. Economics. Defence.

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Tuesday 15 September 2009

More on the Light Combat Helicopter (LCH)

Lots of responses to the LCH overweight article! That was a news article, so it had only pure reporting, but here are some of my views.

600 kg overweight is a huge problem. It means that a helicopter that was to have an empty weight of 2500 kg has gone overweight by almost 25%.

Forget what ASRs say! The LCH has been designed specifically for India’s high altitude conditions. It takes off from altitudes of 3 kilometers (9800 feet), loiters and operates at altitudes of up to 5 kilometers (16,400 feet), and engages targets like UAVs that are flying at altitudes of up to 6.5 kilometers (21,300 feet). At those altitudes, 600 kg extra is a killer. No question about that.

Prasun, Seshadri’s statement is quite clear. He indicates that the total payload at 20,000 feet will be some 350-500 kg. The cannon and its turret are not payload. They are a part of the helicopter fitment. Their ammunition, however, is payload. As are the missiles, rockets (the pods are not payload, they are fitment), etc.

Some weight will come off the LCH by using lighter material for the fuel tanks. That’s fine. Some will come off by using ceramics instead of metal for instrument panels etc. That’s fine too. But what is not fine is that some of the weight could come off by reducing armour protection.

Defence Materials Research Laboratory (DMRL), Hyderabad has developed the armour for the LCH from ceramic plates. The pilots’ area was designed to withstand a direct hit at 90 degrees from a 12.7 mm armour-piercing round. To put that in perspective (Perspex-tive… Ha! Ha!) some of the IAF Mi-35s, which were deployed in Congo, took hits from 12.7 mm AP rounds. They penetrated right through the armoured glass of the Mi-35. And that’s a much heavier machine.

The landing gear cannot be lightened anytime soon. It has a crash-resistance capability of 10.5 m/sec, which the IAF considers absolutely necessary. I agree with them.

Lots of things that bloggers have written about the Comanche are correct. But every cancelled project has a whole mythology of reasons for why it got cancelled. In the final balance, the Comanche was cancelled, not because the Soviet Union went away, but because it was turning out to be a hugely expensive development programme that was eating up time and money.

The cost of the LCH programme, it would be worth noting, is less than the cost of the compensation paid to Boeing-Sikorsky for terminating the Comanche development. Think about that.

And the figure of 179 LCHs includes the 65 that the IAF is buying, while the army is interested in picking up 114 LCHs.


  1. I don't want to say anything.

  2. So Ajaiji what you are saying is its worth the gamble to continue LCH program and that over-weight issue though very serious can take time to fix

    Rubber tubes for fule tanks, plastic for dashboard is the easiest part. The toughest is to reduce landing gear weight and armor..Hmm

    Gurus what is the heaviest part of a helicopter? Engine ?

  3. how can you compare the LCH costs to the Comanche?

    first mover always has to pay heavily attributable costs, and then things get easier for followers-up.

    In the 80s, materials science and other component costs were also much higher for the same level of performance.

    furthermore, the Comanche was leagues more ambitious than the LCH.

  4. To BROADSWORD: Ajay, if the LCH is to be employed for anti-UAV operations and that too against UAVs cruising at altitudes of 21,300 feet, then there are two distinct possible reconfigurations: decrease the weight of the stub-wings and allow only araments like AAMs (Mistral-ATAM), with up to eight being carried per LCH; and reduce the internal fuel capacity. But even in this case the payload weight (of the missle rounds) comes to less than 300kg. There's something missing here in Seshadri's comments and I strongly suspect he is either not mentioning or has failed to mention the installation of the kind of mission sensors required for detecting and tracking the MALE-UAVs. To execute this function (detection and tracking of airborne UAVs), the LCH will have to carry two primary on-board sensors: the nose-mounted optronic suite (collimated with the aircrew's helmet-mounted displ;ay and cueing system), and a roof-mounted millimetre-wave radar of the type already developed by Northrop Grumman for the Bell AH-1Z Viper. Therefore, weight penalties will be incurred for sure, although I'm still not entirely convinced that the LCH will have to attain the same cruise altitude as that of the targetted MALE-UAV in order to shoot the latter down. Because at that altitude with strctly limited manoeuvrability options, any rotary-winged platform will have severe vulnerabilities (especially when targetted by shoulder-launched MANPADS). It therefore seems that Seshadri would need to acquire a better understanding from the LCH's operator of the mission environment and threat scenarios before freezing the LCH's definitive design.
    Of course the third option remains fitment of higher thrust-rated turboshaft and a modified gearbox and tail-rotor transmission.
    With regard to armour protection and aircrew survivability, affording protection against 12.7mm AP rounds will nopt suffice, as the Soviets/Russians had in the late 1980s itself decided that what was required for their Mi-28NE and Ka-50/52 attack helicopters was protection from 23mm AP rounds! In case of the LCH it will have to come face-to-face with ground-based armour-piercing AAA like 14.7mm, 25mm and even 30mm systems.
    The Army's prospective plans for the LCH do bode very well and I had much earlier even arfued in favour of this, and failed to understand why the Indian Army was not the first armed service to order the LCH. But in the Army's case it would presumably insist on a decent payload (like instead of four Helinas, perhaps eight LAHAT ATGMs).

  5. UAV will make a high flying helicopter redundant.

    As usual, India is behind the curve and slowing rapidly to issue more modifications and RFP changes from ball itchiness.

  6. Hi, I feel the landing gear should be dropped in favour of the skids which we already have on the ALH. Besides, the ALH's skids have already proved their crashworthiness. Or is there any particular reason that combat helicopters nowadays have to have wheels?

  7. The IA showed interest? oooh

  8. Can't SAMs be used to shoot UAVs?

  9. You need wheels to do a heavy loaded takeoff or landing or in high altitudes. Roll then take off. Also makes emergency landings less dicey.

  10. Thanks Ajaiji for your comments. Do you have any pic of the LCH TD-1? We are very eager to see it along with PAK FA.
    About overweight issue, is it simply because of armor? or anything else? I know that it is much more difficult to reduce weight of an aircraft with keeping full capabilities. But can the do it with more powerful Shakti engine for extra ~400 kg?

  11. while the army is interested in picking up 114 LCHs.

    best news we had in a loooooong time !

  12. vincent, a troll blocker on this blog would make you redundant !

    think about it ! love to your mom !

  13. The best way to reduce the weight is taking out the stub wings entirely.
    Design an internal weapon bay underneath the belly.
    In this case you can chop a lot more than 600kg.and the design itself offers Additional stealth apart from RAM coatings.

    Use extreme composites for main rotor shaft.

    Any attack heli to be effective against variable threats ,
    1) it needs heavy armour
    2) it needs a gud load of weaponry.

    we cant discount the weapon carrying capability neither the armour. which are a must for LCH.

    If,IAF_HAL fail to chop the weight,the only other option left is use an uprated engine with similar weight and same fuel consumption or even less.The design of an engine will take atleast 4 years if every thing goes according to plan and these people show up at work every day.
    In the mean time IAF can induct as many choppers with a maximised weight chopped.As soon as the new engine comes out, they can simply re-engine the LCH.

    Here only will is important.

  14. And the other option left is completely removing the tail rotor.
    which again needs a major design change.
    The exhaust from the turbo prop can be used to control the tail.
    Its gonna become a highly stealthy design with internal weapon bay and no tail rotor.Moreover it enhances the survival of the bird to 200%.

  15. Using LCH against UAV looks like a very strange idea. A UAV will typically be faster and in near future be supersonic to replace the manned fighter plane. So how can a subsonic craft like a LCH even catch up, track and destroy it. Also, UAVs are already packed with lot of EW and other types of optronics that are very advanced. So, the chance of stealthy UAV detecting a LCH first is very good. ManPads already available are also very effective against a slow moving craft like LCH. So, what is the point of this program. Isn't it better that India put more money into it UAV programs and continue using the ALH that is already performing pretty well.

  16. namaskar ajaiji,
    so now after LCH weight = LCH weight + 200kg, what is the max altitude it can reach with payload and w/o payload.

  17. UAV are often low cost difficult to hit targets. Expending large and expensive SAMs on them is not very cost effective. Besides most tactical UAVs fly under radar coverage taking advantage of the terrain. Again point defense systems cannot be deployed everywhere. Therefore choosing LCH to spot and chase them is actually a good idea.
    Contrary to what many believe LCH will not be used against MALE UAVs. There is no way an LCH flying at 15,000 feet can shoot a MALE flying at 35,000-60,000 feet with a Mistral AAM. Its simply beyond Mistral's reach.
    Yes Prasun, if not the same you still need to be at a comparable altitude to shoot a UAV with an AAM. A lot more energy is required to gain altitude than range. Thats why a 100km range BVRAAM is much smaller to a 100km altitude reaching SAM like PAD.

  18. To Indian: Even if the stub-wings are removed to make way for internally stowed weapons bays it will not result in any decrease of the LCH's MTOW as there will arise the requirement for installing additional actuated weapons bay doors and internally-mounted pylons, resulting in more or less the same weight penalties, but also an increase in internal re-engineering work and additional re-wiring. The only realistic option to overcome the problem of excess weight therefore is to go for uprated engines, more or less the same solution that was adopted for NAL's 'overweight' Saras.

    To AK: I fully agree with you. If one were to analyse the three hitherto successful interceptions of UAVs (the shooting down of an IAF Searcher Mk2 by a PAF F-7P in 2002 during OP Parakram, the shooting down of a Hezbollah-launched UAV by the Israeli IDF-AF F-16 in July 2006, and the shooting down of a Georgian Hermes 450 by a Russian Air Force MiG-29 last year), all these engagements involved a manned combat aircraft detecting and intercepting the UAV. Therefore, using manned platforms like the LCH to shoot down UAVs cruising at altitudes of of 21,000 feet or above does not inspire much confidence. Also to be borne in mind is that over mountainous terrain no one will use MALE-UAVs (like the Searcher Mk2 or the Nishant or the Falco) at nighttime or during bad weather in daytime, simply because such UAVs are extremely vulnerable to strong cross-winds and tail-winds, especially if they exceed 10 Knots. The Indian Army has already experienced this in both J & K as well as over the Thar Desert, while the Canadian land forces (part of ISAF in Afghanistan) too have experienced a few writeoffs of the Sperwer UAVs due to strong wind conditions in high-altitude areas. Even in the Poonch and Rajouri sectors, the China-built UAVs flown by the Pakistan Army have not ventured above 10,000 feet, and have mostly adopted terrain-masking flight profiles, making them extremely hard to detect by radar. Therefore, on what specific grounds the end-user (IAF) has mandated that the LCH be a stable and manoeuvrable weapons-launch platform really baffles me.
    But having said all this, one also needs to touch upon the politics of military hardware procurements. By that I mean adopting the 'crawl, walk and run' approach under which the Indian Army (and not the IAF) becomes the launch customer for the LCH and initially deploys it in the plains as a combined light observation-cum-light attack machine, thereby leaving the IAF to go for heavy attack helicopters in a big way (up to 60 of them). However, this would mean that the IAF has to 'surrender' some of its helicopter-based fighting prowess to the Army Aviation Corps. Consequently, as part of its 'having the cake and eating it too' strategy, the IAF decides to scuttle the Army's elaborate plans for acquiring the LCH (for its planned combat aviation brigades), by sticking its neck out and staking claim to be the launch customer for the LCH. And by doing this it then comes out with an unrealistic ASQR (before the Army can even formulate its GSQR) which mandates that the LCH be optimised only for 'high-altitude warfare', thereby scuttling the Army's plans for settling down on an LCH based on far more realistic GSQRs.

  19. To Pradeep: The ASQR originally prepared by the IAF for the LCH states that the helicopter's HOGE ought to be 3,500 metres, or 11,482.939 feet when it has an all-up weight of 5 tonnes. Which means if the HAL-promised weight reductions take place, it will be operable at altitudes as high as 10,500 feet without compromising its weapons complement. But if the weight-budgeted LCH has to take off from altitudes of 9,800 feet, and loiter and operate at altitudes of up to 16,400 feet with its weapons-load of four Mistral ATAMs), then even with the HAL-promised weight reductions, the LCH's twin Shakti engines will require higher power ratings than what is now achievable.

  20. AK, you are talking of UCAVs, that is the department of fighters and SAMs.

    helos are used the world over against small rotary UAVs. these are not going supersonic in our lifetime and they don't have a radar and will not have one for a very very long time yet, if ever.

    defending against UAVs is only one of the roles of the LCH.

  21. This comment has been removed by the author.

  22. Ajaiji,

    I concur with AK @ 15 September 2009 21:47. Why not UCAV?

  23. why dont hal just few roll out lch with extra least we can see our money is being used in proper way....its beyond our knowlede why they r taking so long after saying its core is from alh.

  24. Can't LCA be used in air defence mode?

  25. To the anonymous poster at 15 September 2009 23:53

    Designing a helicopter is engineering work, not carpentry. Just because its derived from the ALH doesn't mean that its the ALH. There are new engineering drawings to be released to manufacturing, and systems (brackets, pipes, wiring, etc.) that need re-engineering to fit the narrower fuselage of the LCH, as compared to the wider body of the ALH. all of this is time-consuming effort, and please do not under-estimate the effort it takes to get this done.

    You may be interested in reading up on google about South Korea's Surion helicopter and how they're now planning for an attack helicopter to be based on this Surion (which is basically an internally modified Eurocopter Cougar, whose Outer Mould Line, gearbox and bladed design are exactly the same).

    The timelines being mentioned for that derivative attack helicopter when compared to the LCH show that HAL and its private company partners have done a good job of getting the LCH ready, excepting the added weight that needs to be taken care of.

  26. To Anon@00:29: Of course it can. But that would be an overkill. Instead, equip a few of the to-be-acquired Super Tucanos with 20mm or even 12.7m mn gunpods and unleash them against both UAVs and UCAVs. Want a better option: equip two squadrons of the HJT-36 IJTs with 12.7mm or 20mm gunpods and train them for counter-UAV operations. If this is done, then the Indian Army and IAF will be free to employ the 'overweight' LCH like all other existing operators (worldwide) of armed aeroscouts and light attack helicopters. When no one else in the world is even thinking about employing helicopters for high-altitude UAV interceptions/attack--let alone develop such machines--it is indeed a futile exercise to unfairly force HAL to optimise the LCH for such operations.

  27. UAVs are

    1. Cheaper than copters
    2. Cheaper to operate
    3. No danger of loss of life, only tunnel carpal syndrome
    4. More flexible payload (few copters carry bombs, ok)
    5. Longer loiter time by far, and can have much higher operating altitude
    6. Provide just as advanced sensors, if not more
    7. can be designed as copters or planes

    UAVs win hands down at high altitudes.

  28. Talking about UAVs fighting copters as a measure of assessing their worth is just ridiculous, and shows a complete lack of knowledge. Assess on how they meet the operating requirements of the Indian army, not on how they fare in one-on-one combat.

    Hilarious. Would you consider a tyrannosauras rex a 'better dinosaur' because it can beat a pleiosauras on dry land? Come back when your balls have descended.

  29. My 2 cents...

    Just bring out the LCH in the current configuration and use it for exports. Hope the South American countries don't fight at high altitudes.Then shave off the weight for the Indian military.

  30. Why is India obsessed on high altitudes anyway. While the Himalayas chain etc is bothersome, I think Pakistan tanks charging across the Kashmir Valley is more of an issue first. Furthermore just let the Pakis assault over the Siachen and then bomb the hell out of them with precision guided weapons from 40,000 feet.

  31. Thanks Prasun @ 3:42

    I'm new to all this so please bear with me. :)

    UAV threat could be classified into two scenarios.
    1] During war time: In this scenario there will be other ACs in the air that can shoot down UAVs. This may make specialized UAV hunters redundant.

    2] During 'peace' time: India has a long border and UAVs may cross the border for a short period of time. A less sophisticated aircraft may not be able to intercept the UAV before it heads back. We will also need enough number of these to cover India's entire border. UAVs like the ones operated by China (ASN-206) have direct data link, which will make it almost necessary that they be shot down as soon as possible. Hence LCA may be the right way to go. Adversaries may not want to risk assets when there is a high probability of losing them. In the future i would guess UAVs would be even more sophisticated.

    Please let me know what your thoughts are. I agree with you that LCH should be limited to ground support role especially if it means compromising armor.

  32. A begging request(knees on the ground)! Please please please report on the status of LCA's LSP-3 and PV-5.

    Thank You.

  33. Reading your reports, one feels that IAF wants the Bell AH-1Z. It has a service ceiling of 20,000= ft.

    It is interesting to note that the US Marines is operating the AH-1W, which has an effective ceiling of 12,200 ft. They have initiated the upgradation of AH-1W TO AH-1Z standard.

    I think we should go the incremental manner and try to crawl & walk before running and jumping.

    Maybe, one should highlight in the media & parliment the manner in which IAF is killing HAl in its fight with IA.

  34. Good, now the forces will be without a chopper for a decade because HAL has promised that they can deliver!

    Lets just hope this doesn't go down like everything these people claim they can deliver.

  35. IDIOT ranvijay, forces are not and will be without choppers.

    they have ALH, WSI dhruv, mi-17 chetak, chetan etc.

    if it is attack choppers you mean, HAL is delivering when it promised to. it's the forces who were sitting on their a$$es like you and making smart alec comments that have landed them in a soup !

    kindly pull your head out of your anal cavity and smell the morning air !

  36. Hmm...
    So the IAF and IA are fighting each other rather than our real enemies. I guess then there is no hope for India. Best of luck with whatever they are doing.

  37. To Anon@08:11: Before even discussing ways of shooting down UAVs, one needs to have in place a UAV detection system/network. While high-flying UAVs can be detected by ground-based L-band and S-band 'Gapfiller' radars and even by aircraft equipped with ELINT/SIGINT sensors, the problem increases manifold when UAVs are operating over mountainous terrain like the ASN-206s did between 1996 to 2003 over Poonch and Rajouri. More often that not, the Indian Army then discovered such UAV flights (using terrain-masking in daytime for avoiding hostile ground-based fire by the Indian Army's Igla-S and ZU-23s) only by spotting them visually. To remedy matters, the DRDO was tasked with developing low-cost mobile radar-based sensors that could be networked to form an anti-UAV surveillance grid. By 2005, two types of such radars--the Aslesha 3-D S-band radar and the 2-D L-band Bharani--were developed and have since entered series-production. Such radars have a height coverage envelope between 30 metres and 5,400 metres and instrumented range of 50km. Now, having sorted out the early warning and target acquisition issues, we now come to the target engagement issue. For low-level engagement over mountainous terrain the Chinese have developed an innovative method under which a Battery of FB-6A VSHORADS (comprising six 4 x 4 motorised vehicles each equipped with eight FN-6 IR-guided missiles and an optronic target acquisition system) along with a SmartHunter low probability-of-intercept (LPI) radar is deployed over mountainous terrain in a particular sub-sector. In India's case, though the ground-based sensors have been developed, what's missing is the VSHORADS element (vehicle-mounted multiple Igla-S missiles).
    Now, as far as aerial destruction of UAVs by manned combat aircraft/helicopters go, it can be done by any platform equipped with internal cannons, or underwing gunpods, or chin-mounted cannon, or even IR-guided missiles like the MBDA Mistral ATAM or Vympel R-60T. Therefore, it need not be only the LCA to be tasked with such missions. It can even be a MiG-21 Bison or a Hawk Mk132 or a HJT-36 IJT or a Mi-17V-5 or a Dhruv WSI or a Chetan or a Cheetal, whichever of them happens to be closest to the hostile airborne UAV.

    To Ranvijay: Let us be fair and objective here. The LCH's light observation/attack variant can be delivered within the next 36 months PROVIDED the MoD and Army HQ place firm orders today. No doubt about that and HAL is geared up to do its part, including arming the Army LCH's with Hellfire or Spike LR or Helina, whatever the Army wants. The problem is with the LCH's variant destined for the IAF, thanks to the IAF's questionable ASQRs. NHow, just because the IAF has reservations about the LCH being overweight doesn't automatically translate into the Army too having similar objections, does it? Why should the Army's LCH procurement plans be held hostage due to the IAF's intransigence?

  38. To Broadsword:

    Prasun Sengupta in his blog made this comment:

    "In my view, such a weapon system, when aided by a raisable mast-mounted LORROS-type millimetre-wave radar-/optronics-based sensor would be far more value-added as a ground-launched anti-MBT guided-weapon, instead of the existing ground-launched Nag ATGM (how the NAMICA will acquire its target in undulating terrain or in farmlands without raising its optronic sensor to at least 15 feet remains a mystery to me)."

    May i know what is your opinion on this ?

    Any comment, I made in his blog, questioning the veracity of this claim is getting summarily deleted by Prasun Sengupta.

    AFAIK, NAG acquired and engaged a target beyond 4 KM (something close to 5 KM) from the NAMICA. Pls share your thoughts.

  39. Why the mast has to be raised to 15 feet higher than the current one ?

    Is that means, the exiciting NAG/NAMICA cannot engage the targets to the stated range ?

  40. Anon@01:42

    This is what BROADSWORD had said about the Nag and its range: "The LCH was to be fitted with the DRDO’s Nag anti-tank missile, but the services want a missile that can hit tanks at 7 kilometers, compared with the 4 km range of the Nag." (

    And this is what was quoted by LIVEFIST: "India successfully flight tested 3rd generation, Fire and Forget Anti Tank Guided Missile NAG with a range of 4 Km on stationary and moving targets in the presence of users on 5th and 6th August 2008 at Pokhran Ranges. Both targets hit confirming the system capabilities of the NAG Missile." (

    So, the only way the Nag can engage a target something close to 5km is if you gave a strong enough fart behind the Nag to produce an exceptionally strong tailwind. Clear enough, nitwit!!!

  41. For Anon@01:54

    Not the mast. Prasun is only saying the optronic target-acquisition system needs to be raised to a height of 15 feet, and not the entire launcher containing the missile rounds. He's right in case the Namica's targets happen to be lurking in and around sugarcane plantations and the like.

  42. Anon @ 04.25:

    Sometime back there was a NEWS item which mentioned about the test carried out at extended range. I addressed this particularly to Broadsword for the same reason that he was from the same Service which carried our the test.

    The issue is not particularly about the range. It is about the mystery expressed by Prasun Sengupta on NAG engaging its target at stated range without raising the mast/target acquisition to 15 feet high further.

    He failed to address how that is justified on what basis and failed to accomodate any querries on this.

    This was addressed to Broadsword amd if you cant better not to fart yourself on this.

  43. Anon @ 4.33:

    Target acquisition system is emplaced in the mast. And the mast at elevated condition is actually around 15 feet from the ground.

  44. @ Anon 6:50,

    Prasun is a fraud.dont take his words/works as granted.
    he works for yankees.He is not an indian.

    All you can trust is Mr.shukla.

    I saw his fight for Arjun tank.
    Hats-off shukla ji.

    India needs journos like you not like those fraud guptas and bullshit Ramans.

  45. Anon

    Prasun is mocking DRDO at every available opportunity. IOW, what he says is DRDO doesnt know all this undulating terrain and farmlands and designed the NAMICA inferior wihtout considering the ground realities..and he knows more about the terrain and suggesting DRDO shoudl do blah blah

  46. So, the only way the Nag can engage a target something close to 5km is if you gave a strong enough fart behind the Nag to produce an exceptionally strong tailwind. Clear enough, nitwit!!!

    @ anon @ 17 September 2009 04:25

    that's for the ground launch version. for air launched versions range will be anything between 40-50% more.

    all it would need is a little fine tuning in auto pilot.


    (how the NAMICA will acquire its target in undulating terrain or in farmlands without raising its optronic sensor to at least 15 feet remains a mystery to me)."


    prasun, if we start listing the number of things that are a 'mystery' to you it will become a mahabharat !
    why embarrass yourself ?

  48. A careful digging into some sources reveals that millionaire extraordinaire Prasun K Sengupta is on ISI's hitlist, CIA's royalty list, IAI's paylist abd bloggers' blacklist!Currently he is also among the top 500 names on Malaysian prime property list.Putting aise his knowledge, wealth, bias and whatever, he still remains the best qualified bloggers and owes the tile General Blogger.

  49. A careful digging into some sources reveals that millionaire extraordinaire Prasun K Sengupta is on ISI's hitlist, CIA's royalty list, IAI's paylist and bloggers' blacklist!Currently he is also among the top 500 names on Malaysian prime property list.Putting aside his knowledge, wealth, bias and whatever, he still remains the best qualified blogger and owes the title General Blogger.

  50. Anon@06:50 & Anon@07:13
    First, browse through the DEFEXPO 2008 info posters, particularly that of the Nag and Namica, where every single detail is mentioned. Only then form an informed conclusion. If you both continue farting when operating in AFAIK modes, then at least try to make some money out of this by offering your gas-supply services to RIL, GAIL etc, insyead of wasting your farts against Prasun etc.

    As for Anon@09:49, even the DAE is now mocking DRDO and A P J Abdul Kalam, so why not Prasun?

  51. Anon@06:50 & Anon@07:13
    First, browse through the DEFEXPO 2008 info posters, particularly that of the Nag and Namica, where every single detail is mentioned. Only then form an informed conclusion. If you both continue farting when operating in AFAIK modes, then at least try to make some money out of this by offering your gas-supply services to RIL, GAIL etc, instead of wasting your farts against Prasun etc.

    As for Anon@09:49, even the DAE is now mocking DRDO and A P J Abdul Kalam, so why not Prasun?

  52. Abey fraud gupta,

    russia stopped supplying gas to europe.why dont you go and supply your fart gas?

  53. Amazing how manly these little anonymous dudes get on the internet. I'd like to see you say that to me in real life, whoever you are.

    Its good that you have the ability to censor posts in your little HAL-fanboy forum, Rahul M. Kindly don't teach things to people who have actually known HAL for what they are.

    Now, back to your call centre, boy.

    Its not worth the gamble to star without a combat helicopter till the LCH comes out, the IA need replacements NOW. The idiot says WSI Dhruv's MI 17's and Chetaks will take over the LCH's role?

    You really need to go read some good ole wikipedia. Or you can stay behind your "moderator" priviledges and "wank" off to stories of how good and efficient HAL are.

  54. India does need LCH ASAP.period
    Till now the attack roles were being taken by Mi-35 which is the heaviest of its class and works well in the plains but not at high altitudes.
    LCH which is the gap filler to take such roles in high altitudes and with a maximum possibility to take over the roles of the MI-35 in planes in high numbers.
    Being the indigenous made and low cost attack heli with pretty much good performance as on paper it can become the back bone of both IA and IAF`s attack heli.

    Once India comes up with a medium heli of its own, we can convert it into another attack heli. or else weaponise it as like WSI-druv.

    LCH was supossed to fly in 3 years after the funds were provided.But it took more than 5 years and still the prototypes are resting in the HAL hangers.
    HAL does really have a bad quality control and bad project management.
    The recent BAE-Hawk is a good eye opener.Being the only aeronautical manufacturing company in whole India it is really taking the advantage.Its tardy delivery os MKI`s is another eye opener.It delivered the final Jaguar after 25 years of signing the contract.One can understand from only couple of these kinda high lights ,how good is HAL capability.
    Armed forces are clearly burdening HAL.Its the perfect time to bring the private sector for mass production with high quality and in less time.
    To all HAL fan boys,
    Only talk if you know the facts.Dont judge by the facts provided by idiots like prasun sen gupta who are foreign workers.
    They are not really nationalists nor Indians.

    Another big eye opener is LCA itself.where is LCA-navy???
    Viraat is currently holding only 9 aircrafts.If HAL-ADA-NAL might have developed the LCA-navy as per the timeframe, we might have tested them on viraat and might have provided a squadron of them to rest SH.

    Again people might say it is the armed forces who should be blamed for their frequent change in requirements.Right which can be agreed with that.But the change in requirements is absolutely important comparing to the pace of induction provided the developed product by the developing agencies.If DRDO/HAL comes up with a product that been specified some 10,000 years ago and forces the armed forces to induct today ? is simply stupidity and only showcases the incompetence.

    Simple example is the missiles being developed by the so called DRDO labs.Agreed that there was a lot of technological denial and hence there was a problem with having the needed technology for the systems.But all those people who had the most advanced systems have gone through this stage.they invented moreover.They showed the way and how product performs if not the technical details atleast in theory.Still we lagged behind.
    After developing a small missile with a freaken 150km range it took us more than 30 years to develop a 3500km one and still is undergoing the final development phase.
    And on top of that we dont have a credible warhead to mate with the system.Even the scientist at BARC who are supossed to be the life savers of India are lying.On one hand they are not accepting the fact that the H bum was fizzile instead they are covering their ass.And the whole world knew today and that day that we dont have H-bum and we failed the test.

    If people say that you are getting for what we are paying these scientists blah blah.. then you are definitely wrong.we are paying the similar amount to these scientists.Convert their pays into nominal cant right away compare their pay scales with the west since we have a lot of exchange traded difference.
    Bottom line is accept the fact that we had a bunch of tardiest people eating our tax paid money resting in AC rooms and delivering a product for no use once ina while.

    At the same time we have the same kind of politicans who are eating more money than these scientists and fail to deliver not even a .00001% of what they are supossed to.While we work hard on our ass and pay these bastards, they are simply wasting the resources and time.

  55. ^^^ indian from amazonian jungles,wake had a roller coaster ride with words over HAL,DRDO,BARC and finally Tom,dick and harry! Do you have any really and practically working plans to make HAL to work like Boeing or LM or Northrop and DRDO like DARPA? if yes please send them over to RM,C/O Raksha mantralay, new delhi-110001. Other wise kindly keep your mouth shut!
    Dont spoil usefull blogs like this with your rant.!Thank you.

  56. Idiot Ranvijay
    got under your skin did I ? :D

    it is you who said "Good, now the forces will be without a chopper for a decade because HAL has promised that they can deliver!"
    not I.

    since you don't know the difference between combat helicopter and other types go back to reading wikipedia or whatever it is you yankee fanboys read.

    sorry ! can't read you say ?
    only youtube videos for you ? do it then.

    fu(k rahulm, for all your bluster you only showed that you don't have an answer to my comment.

    love to your mom !

  57. Prasun @ 17 September 2009 00:21

    "It can even be a MiG-21 Bison or a Hawk Mk132 or a HJT-36 IJT or a Mi-17V-5 or a Dhruv WSI or a Chetan or a Cheetal, whichever of them happens to be closest to the hostile airborne UAV"

    Agree. India doesn't need specialized aircraft to shoot down UAV. IMO, reason why India chose a helicopter (LCA) is probably because of its 'soft' policy. Deploying aircraft could mean escalation.

  58. ^^^
    Not LCA but LCH.

  59. by the way, someone was suggesting that the IA and IAF need the AH-1Z Zulu Cobra (not Viper as Prasun put it) if it wants high-altitude warfare- the Zulu Cobra was pulled out of the 22 attack helicopters competition by Bell, because they cite that they can only sell it through the FMS program, not company to India, as India wants it. they pulled out the first time as well, citing not enough time being given to them to put together their RFPs.

    so the LCH is vital for India.

  60. Kartik, 'Zulu Cobra' refers to only those existing US Marine Corps-owned AH-1W Cobras that are being upgraded to AH-1Z standard. Factory-built (new-build) AH-1Zs are referred to as Viper. Bell Helicopters never offered or marketed pre-owned or upgraded AH-1Z Zulu Cobras to India, but what it wanted to offer through the USDSCA's FMS sales channel was the newly-built AH-1Z Viper.

  61. @ Anon,17 September 2009 22:12.

    Yes i was having a roller coaster ride because of people like you taking positions as top bureaucrats and managing directors of defence establishments.

    because of idiots like you taking control of these establishments and nation an ordinary citizen like me was scared of enemy.Since you might have saved well in the swiss banks you can go and by any 5-Star hotel and rest peacefully.But i am an ordinary Indian living on the roadside with no proper roof and food and clothes to cover by oragans.People like you robbed all the money that was supossed to be mine.People like you managing the defence establishments managing funds and screwing countries defence preparedness.

    Since you were left behind the walls of an enclosure you can only see whats in that particular room.but i can see every aspect from politics to defence and corruption.
    You better fcuk yourself or else fuckoff from this country.

  62. haha...people going after rahul m (probably the most snotty snobbish bradmin ever...)

  63. LCH development will soon be 'complete'.

  64. The mock up was there in AI 2006...since then the morons at HAL haven't been able to get a tech demonstrator out and they already expect funds and "interest" from the armed forces.

    LOL, talk about shoving indigenisation down our throats! The fools at HAL haven't been able to reverse engineer the gunships and aircraft they've had access to and they plan on developing world beating platforms from scratch!!

    Only a moronic civillian with a chacha/mama in these PSU's can respect these morons who claim they can deliver the death star but can't reverse engineer the space shuttle thats been lying with them for decades.

    LSP-3 of the LCA was supposed to be out a few months back? Where is it? Wheres the trainer? The MMR was supposed to be installed, where is it? Has the LCA managed to meet its stipulated weight requirements? Has Kaveri (lol) finally managed to clear HA trials?

    The scientists are a bunch of underpaid jokers. Increase salaries and hire graduates from the IIT's instead of these dudes who'd probably be confused if you asked them how many corners a circle had.

  65. hello ran vijay! why should MMR be shown to public consisting of ppl like you.Do you think its a priyanka chpra or a deepika padukone? The ppl manning have shown it to the ppl who have made it and have also been congratulated!do you think defence equipment can be made overnight, by cut copy and pasting. Yes agreed! Things are not in good shape, . do you have some plans to make HAL,DRDO and especially GTRE accountable? if yes then forward it to the RM. There is no point in whining here!

  66. "The scientists are a bunch of underpaid jokers"

    Generalizing doesn't do justice. :(

    I think the problem is that 17th century process is being mandated to build 21st century products.

    I recently went to open a locker at at a bank in Bangalore. The manager asked me to get a stamp paper. The only place we can get a higher priced stamp paper in Bangalore is at the main State Bank Of Mysore (SBM). If you go there to main SBM, there are hundreds of people in the line. After two and half hours of waiting i finally get my stamp paper. The guy at the counter worked through lunch (thanks to him). When i head back to the bank the Manager tells me India will be a super power in 3 years. I was tempted to ask if he has ever left the pond!

  67. For Ranvijay:

    dude, check out this article on how the Koreans (maybe you respect their engineering skills at least, if not those of HAL guys ?) will try to develop an attack helicopter out of the Surion (which BTW, is based on the Eurocopter Cougar, with only the insides being changed- even the blade design is the same). Compare the timelines for the third option, which closely match those of the ALH and LCH

    Aviation Week's DTI | Bradley Perrett | August 25, 2009

    An attack derivative of the Surion utility helicopter is shaping up as a likely project to sustain Korea Aerospace Industries’ hard-won aeronautics development skills.

    The need for development work is clearly driving the push for a home-grown attack helicopter, since foreign producers already offer advanced models whose price and performance could be difficult for Korea Aerospace, a new arrival in the rotary-wing business, to improve on.

    The South Korean government and industry are considering four alternative schemes under the Korean Attack Helicopter program

    •A simple addition of stub wings and weapons to the Surion. With 87% commonality with the Surion, development of this model would take four years and cost 200 billion won ($160 million), Korea Aerospace says. The unit price would be 21 billion won.

    •A new stepped cockpit grafted on to the Surion cabin, along with the wings and weapon systems, with 73% commonality. Development time and cost would rise to five years and 700 billion won, and unit cost to 23.1 billion won.

    •A new body, including cockpit, but otherwise retaining as much as possible from the Surion, notably the power train, and offering 63% commonality. This aircraft would need six years and up to 1 trillion won for development and would cost 24.8 billion won per unit.

    •An attack helicopter unrelated to the Surion. This could be an adaptation of a foreign design.

    None of these concepts will be free from criticism.

    The first two seem to be highly compromised in the quest for commonality, since the engines would have to haul around the mass of a transport helicopter body that would offer little advantage in an attack mission while offering a larger, more sluggish target.

    The second option is visually similar to the 12-ton Mil Mi-24 assault and attack helicopter, but the South Korean aircraft would not act in such a role, striking from the air and landing infantry to assault from the ground. A scale model shows that the design has no large doors for infantry, and that the cabin could be obstructed by carry-through structure of the mid-mounted wings.

    All three proposed derivatives may be open to the charge they are bigger than necessary, a result of the choice of the power train from the 8.7-metric-ton Surion.

    The Korean Attack Helicopter program has been aimed at developing a light- to medium-size aircraft, akin to the 6-ton Eurocopter Tiger. South Korea’s AH-1s have a 4.5-ton maximum weight.

    But the rating of the Surion’s two General Electric T700-GE-701K turboshafts -- each at 1,383 kw. (1,854 hp.) for 10 min. -- would put an attack derivative in the same class as the Boeing AH-64 Apache, which has a design mission gross weight of 8 tons and an overload ferry-mission weight of 10.4 tons.

    If the proposal for an aircraft unrelated to the Surion produced an all-new design, it would face criticism as a costly reinvention of what was already available. A new helicopter would, however, offer to greatly extend the rotary-wing skills that Korea Aerospace has learned from developing Surion with help from Eurocopter (AW&ST Aug. 10, p. 34).

    One military official tells the Yonhap news agency that development must begin next year for entry into service by 2018. The national security council directed in 2005 that no decision on the attack helicopter be taken before an assessment of the Surion, now due by October 2010. The finance ministry is accordingly refusing to release the first 3 billion won of development funding for the attack helicopter until then.

  68. @ Ranvijay
    Mofos like u can say what u want because u do not have a minimal understanding about helicopters or gunships, actually we at HAl care a damn as to what ignorant asses like u think and regularly laugh at posts like yours(seriously i do it all the time with my friends) in fact we find your levels of ignorance unfathomable and ok, for your information , HJT-36 was designed and flown in a record 36 months and LCH development is in an advanced stage and the problems in LCA are largely due to ADA and not HAL and the trainer version of LCA is done and has performed EGRs thats good enough for a stupid asshole like you who likes to see whats happening with his money and one more thing before ever abusing HAL/DRDO try flying an RC model A/C(making one is out of the question for an ignorant mfr like u) then u will probably know how tough it is to make one,i could've put on a few more facts but for that u need to be an ENGINEER but from your comments its evident that you are probably just an irritating science/commerce grad with no appreciable job on hand (pity you)

  69. LCH developement is in an advanced stage? Excellent...lets see how soon you can get TD-1 out then. I say around 1-1.5 years.

    As for you trying to put the blame on ADA for the delays facing the LCA...typical governemt chaap mentality lol. Shift the blame onto others. I'm going to cut your salary or something kya if you accept that you've had faults too? LOL..

    And as for your "engineer-giri"...rofl, lemme guess, another from a sub par college trying to act like he's the bomb. I say again, instead of hiring half literate idiots from meerut or gaziabad, the govt would do well to double the salaies these dudes get and employ someone from the IIT's or more renowned institutes to get the job done.

    And you're wrong about the science/commerce graduate. Me toh liberal arts student from JNU onlee. Wanna smoke weed and chant peace slogans with me? ROFL..

  70. I have been following these blogs after posting that the IAF wants LCH wants HAL to match AH-1Z in specs.

    It seems that they know that HAL face difficulties for achieving the same and hence justify their purchase of AH-1Z thru FMS from Bell.

    HAL, instead to understanding the journey made by BELL with the AH-1Z, wants to accept these IAF specs without any thought.

    Finally, the common man has to pay the price for such tactics.

    Here, in this blog, there is only name-calling. No concrete suggestions.

    I feel that the IAF should go in for at least 20 AH-1Z immediately, provided we get deliveries in the next few years. HAL should be told to deliver a fully operational LCH as per IAF specs within the next five years.

    This will be a good way forward.

  71. Exactly! Thats just what I wanted to say. Purchase the combat helicopters now, once we're certain that HAL can meet requirements, place our orders.

    I don't hate HAL or DRDO or ADA, hell I'd defend those in a public forum any single day against na-pakis...but without being critical of your own capabilities, you can never improve.

    Sure I could tomtom fanboy stuff..45pc composites in the LCA, expertise in software, weapons, an MMR that contains aspects of the 2052 blah de blah, but when you look at the real picture, how many LSP's have HAL + ADA delivered?

    Its this same story of a world beating machine - on paper, that I'm afraid might be repeated with the LCH.

    Give HAL the orders once they've shown they can make it reach even 90% of the force's requirements. Till then buy what we can, weaponise Dhruvs etc etc

  72. @ ranvijay
    ok for your informtion i am a design trainee(all design trainees in my batch are M.techs from IITs and few from NIT and that i suppose is no way near the sub par engg college in some north indian state) with HAL and i have a valid from IIT-K so that answers your question about me being an ordinary engineer from just another college and it would be better if u just smoke weed and stay away from us guys, if u really think can change things, come in the doors are always open at HAL provided u are as capable as people like us(not to forget the from IIT)

  73. hal is not talking anything about it in the open. so is this project scrapped or something????????????

  74. why are so many people misnaming IAF choppers... for god's sake they are CHEETAH and CHETAK. and not cheetal and chetan..damn

  75. also..its not quite right to think of LCH as as counter UAV aircraft. As a weaponized chopper, I believe, its main role will be in anti personnel, anti-armour and anti-tank capabilities.
    LCH project is such a baby in terms of development time frame...we should give our men more time and a word of encouragement...
    All those with smart-ass ideas on how to make the LCH lighter shold join the HAL, DRDO and NAL..dnt waste your "special" ideas here..

  76. HAL is a pathetic organization.they cant design a toy helicopter without foreign help

  77. Sir Ji,

    Someone please provide some inputs on the status of LCH.

    Been a wait now.

    Wishing to find some info somewhere.

  78. The overweight problem,s better solution is to aquire more powerful engines.
    the shakti engine is rated at just @900kw, quite less than contemporay helicopter engines.all the rest are @ or above 1000kw.
    I know it's difficult but if turkey can do it, why not we try it to.


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