Boe­ing com­pletes ma­jor in­te­gra­tion of In­dia’s first C-17 air­lifter

SP's MAI - - AEROSPACE -

Boe­ing has in­te­grated the for­ward, cen­tre and aft fuse­lages and the wing assem­bly of In­dia’s first C-17 Globe­mas­ter III dur­ing the air­lifter’s “ma­jor join” cer­e­mony in Long Beach. The Em­bassy, se­nior In­dian Air Force and lo­cal elected of­fi­cials drove cer­e­mo­nial riv­ets into the air­craft as they cel­e­brated the achieve­ment of this key pro­gramme mile­stone.

In­dia’s Min­istry of De­fence signed an agree­ment with the US Gov­ern­ment on June 15, 2011, to ac­quire 10 C-17 air­lifters, mak­ing In­dia the largest C-17 cus­tomer out­side the US. Those gov­ern­ments fi­nalised the for­eign mil­i­tary sales (FMS) con­tract for the air­frame alone on June 6.

“The de­fence re­la­tion­ship be­tween In­dia and the United States is an im­por­tant di­men­sion of our strate­gic part­ner­ship,” said Am­bas­sador N. Parthasarathi, Con­sul Gen­eral of In­dia, San Fran­cisco. “This mo­men­tous oc­ca­sion, where we see In­dia’s first C-17 take shape, fur­ther strength­ens our grow­ing re­la­tion­ship. As In­dia strives to be­come a global reser­voir of highly skilled and tech­no­log­i­cally so­phis­ti­cated man­power, we will wit­ness an es­ca­lat­ing tech­nol­ogy trans­fer, col­lab­o­ra­tive joint re­search and de­vel­op­ment, and co-pro­duc­tion of de­fence items be­tween the two coun­tries.”

“This is a proud day for the highly skilled Boe­ing work­force and our new­est cus­tomer to cel­e­brate a ma­jor pro­duc­tion mile­stone,” said Bob Ciesla, Boe­ing Air­lift Vice Pres­i­dent and C-17 Pro­gram Man­ager. “We are pre­par­ing for In­dia’s first C-17 to en­ter flight test on sched­ule early next year, and we look for­ward to pro­vid­ing for In­dia’s cur­rent and fu­ture needs and con­tin­u­ing to sup­port the C-17s long af­ter they are de­liv­ered.”

Am­bas­sador N. Parthasarathi, Con­sul Gen­eral of In­dia, San Fran­cisco, drives a rivet into the first of the 10 C-17 Globe­mas­ter III air­craft be­ing built for In­dia’s Min­istry of De­fence dur­ing a cer­e­mony in Long Beach, Cal­i­for­nia

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