HAL’s indigenously developed Combat Gunship
The world’s greatest light combat helicopter is Indian! Yes, you read it right. India now has a light combat helicopter, manufactured by HAL, which has created a record in aviation history.
It is the first helicopter of its kind that has landed at an altitude of 16,000 feet from the sea level. No other light combat helicopter has achieved this feat.
Here are some points you must know:
1. The light combat helicopter (LCH) has been manufactured by the government-run Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL).
2. The helicopter is in service with the Indian Army and the Air Force. It is capable for high-altitude warfare. It can reach any height ranging from 19,700 to 21,300 feet.
3. The LCH made its first flight on March 29 in 2010. The idea of such an aircraft spawned from the Kargil War where Indian soldiers faced trouble accessing the high peaks.
4. The LCH is a variant of the HAL Dhruv, which is the primary helicopter of the Indian Armed Forces.
5. One unit of LCH costs around USD 20.2 million. The Air Force is to acquire around 65 LCHs and the Army is to get 114 of these.
6. An LCH weighs around 5,500 kilograms, the same as that of an African Bush Elephant.
7. The LCH is a multi-tasker. It can be used in various operations such as counter surface force operations, destruction of enemy air defence operations, providing an escort to special heliborne operations, counter-insurgency operations, offensive employment in urban warfare, support of combat, search and rescue operations, anti-tank action and scout duties.
Source: Defense News