HAL and Safran to form JV to sup­port In­dian he­li­copter op­er­a­tors


The Hin­dus­tan Aero­nau­tics Ltd (HAL) and Safran He­li­copter En­gines have agreed to es­tab­lish a sup­port cen­tre in In­dia for na­tional and in­ter­na­tional ro­tor­craft cus­tomers. An agree­ment to this ef­fect was signed on July 12, by D.K. Venkatesh, Di­rec­tor (Engg, and R&D), HAL, and Bruno Even, CEO of Tur­bomeca, at the on­go­ing Farn­bor­ough In­ter­na­tional Air­show in the pres­ence of T. Su­varna Raju, CMD of HAL and Philippe Petit­colin, CEO of Safran.

This new cen­tre will pro­vide main­te­nance, re­pair and over­haul (MRO) ser­vices for Safran TM333 and HAL Shakti en­gines that pow­ers HAL-built he­li­copters. Safran He­li­copter En­gines and HAL will pro­vide their cus­tomers with a first-class ser­vice in­clud­ing op­ti­mised en­gine avail­abil­ity.

With over 1,000 en­gines, in­clud­ing 250 TM333 and 250 Shakti, In­dia’s armed forces are one of the largest op­er­a­tors of Safran-de­signed he­li­cop- ter en­gines. Shakti is the In­dian des­ig­na­tion for the Safran’s Ar­di­den 1, co-de­vel­oped with HAL and pro­duced un­der li­cence.

Su­varna Raju said, “The JV re­flects the close re­la­tion­ship es­tab­lished over many years be­tween HAL and Safran He­li­copter En­gines. It places both part­ners on an am­bi­tious path to­wards world-beat­ing cus­tomer sup­port in the field of en­gine MRO. The joint ven­ture will pro­vide the im­pe­tus for the ‘Make in In­dia’ ini­tia­tive since around 1,000 Shakti en­gines are likely to fly in the com­ing years”.

Serge Maillé, Safran He­li­copter En­gines Ex­ec­u­tive Vice Pres­i­dent for Strat­egy and De­vel­op­ment, com­mented: “this joint ven­ture marks a new step in the long-last­ing and fruit­ful part­ner­ship be­tween Safran He­li­copter En­gines and HAL. We are ex­tremely proud of the con­tin­ued con­fi­dence placed on us by HAL. To­gether we are com­mit­ted to de­liv­er­ing world-class sup­port to our cus­tomers, both in In­dia and through­out the re­gion”.

Shakti is fit­ted to HAL’s ad­vanced light he­li­copter Dhruv and has been se­lected to power the HAL-de­signed light com­bat he­li­copter. The new light util­ity he­li­copter, a three-tonne sin­gle-en­gine chop­per un­der de­vel­op­ment, is also fit­ted with a Tur­bomeca en­gine.

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