Tata-Boeing JV delivers 100th Apache fuselage in just three years - Broadsword by Ajai Shukla - Strategy. Economics. Defence.

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Friday 23 July 2021

Tata-Boeing JV delivers 100th Apache fuselage in just three years

Hyderabad plant delivers first Apache fuselage in May 2018 and in three years has made its 100th delivery


By Ajai Shukla

Business Standard, 24th July 21


Tata Boeing Aerospace Limited (TBAL), a joint venture (JV) between The Boeing Company and Tata Advanced Systems Ltd (TASL), announced on Friday the delivery of the 100th fuselage it has fabricated for the AH-64 Apache attack helicopter.


TBAL fabricates the fuselages in Hyderabad. They are then transported to Boeing’s AH-64 Apache integration line in Mesa, Arizona, in the US, where they are assembled into fully-built helicopters and shipped out to Apache customers around the globe.


TBAL, Boeing’s first equity JV in India, is the result of a 2015 partnership agreement with TASL. Spread over 14,000 square meters, the state-of-the-art manufacturing facility is being expanded, says Boeing.


A new production line will begin manufacturing complex vertical fin structures for the Boeing 737 family of airplanes. The production line will utilize cutting-edge robotics and automation technology in manufacturing, says a senior TASL executive.


“The achievement of 100th fuselage delivery for AH-64 within three years of the facility being operational… places the Telangana facility as part of the global supply chain for Apache helicopters. Further, it underlines our indigenous manufacturing capability to produce cutting-edge technology and quality defence equipment in the country,” said Sukaran Singh, chief of TASL.


TBAL delivered its first Apache fuselage in May 2018 and in three years has made its 100th delivery. The Apache fuselage and other secondary structures supplied by TBAL account for 90 per cent of the structure of the Apache.


About 90 per cent of the parts utilized in manufacturing the Apache fuselage are indigenous. The majority of them are being manufactured in another Tata facility in Hyderabad, said TABL.

TBAL posted a revenue of Rs 280 crores in the last financial year 2020-21, which was achieved by doubling the number of Apache fuselages built at Hyderabad. The company expects to significantly ramp up Apache fuselage deliveries in the current financial year. 


These will include the fuselages for the six Apache choppers ordered by Indian Army last year.

The Apache is widely acknowledged as the world’s deadliest and most capable attack helicopter. The armed forces of 16 countries, including India, operate more than 1,200 Apache helicopters.


The 22 Apache helicopters that the IAF operates have been playing a significant role in the on-going confrontation in Ladakh between Indian and Chinese troops.

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