Friday, August 2, 2013

Ukraine to send next batch of upgraded An-32s to India in August

Ukraine is preparing to send to India in August a sixth batch of five An-32 light transport aircraft, which were modernized at the facilities of the Ukrainian defence industry on the order of the Indian Air Force.

"The technical acceptance by the customer of the next batch of An-32s has already begun. Once it is completed, the transport aircraft are due to depart from Kyiv to Kanpur in August," a source in the defense sector familiar with the implementation of the Indian contract told Interfax-Ukraine. The source said that the Indian customer had currently ensured the full supply to Ukraine of the An-32s the modernization, which, under the contract, should be carried out at Ukrainian defense industry facilities. "Of the 40 aircraft that are to be upgraded in Ukraine, 25 have already been modernized and passed to the customer, and five more are at the stage of technical acceptance and will be sent to India soon. A seventh batch of An-32s is to be transferred to the Indian side by the end of the year. An eighth batch arrived in Kyiv for modernization in mid-July, and its transfer to the customer is scheduled for early 2014," he said. "Given the high pace and quality of the modernization work by the Ukrainian side, the parties are currently discussing the possibility of increasing capacity utilization as part of the contract," he said. The contract, worth some $400 million, involves repairing and modernizing 103 An-32 aircraft for the Indian Air Force. It was signed in July 2009 between the Indian Air Force and Spectechnoexport, a subsidiary of Ukrspecexport. Under the contract, 40 airplanes are to be modernized in Ukraine and the rest of the aircraft at the BRD-1 aviation plant of the Indian Air Force in Kanpur (North India). Ukraine's Antonov Plant and Civil Aviation Plant 410 are executing the contract. As part of the upgrade, the Indian aircraft will be fitted with around 25 types of modern equipment made in Ukraine and other countries. The equipment increases flight safety. The upgraded An-32 will be able to land on an ICAO category II approach. Fuel consumption and the mass of the empty upgraded aircraft will be lower than for the basic model. In addition, in line with a three-year contract worth $110 million signed in December 2009 by OJSC Motor Sich (Zaporizhia) and the Indian Air Force, the
AI-20 engines of the Indian An-32s are to be upgraded. The An-32 is a light transport aircraft with a maximum payload of 7.5 tonnes and a range of 800 kilometers. Its cruise speed is 470-530 kilometers per hour. The aircraft is capable of transporting 42 paratroopers. According to expert estimation, more than 350 An-32 aircraft have been sold to 20 countries as of today. The Antonov Plant is planning to present the An 148 300MP aircraft at a number of tenders conducted by the Defense Ministry of India for the purchase of maritime patrol aircraft.

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