Briefings from the Defexpo Boeing's focus on India
Providing services and support capabilities in keeping with modernisation needs of the Indian Armed Forces” is Boeing’s primary focus in India and the company is working with the Indian Air Force and Indian Navy to provide training and support of Boeing platforms such as the P-8I, C-17 and Boeing Business Jets.
In 2017, Boeing announced the establishment of Boeing Defence India (BDI), a local operating entity to drive the company’s future growth objectives in India
“by being responsive to customer needs and growing indigenous engineers, sourcing, manufacturing and lifecycle management capabilities.”
BDI is the local services delivery vehicle of Boeing Global Services, the new dedicated services business established in June 2017 and which integrates service capabilities of its commercial, defence and space sectors into a single business to provide aerospace services to customers worldwide, regardless of platform manufacturer.
Global Services has four capability focus areas to make platforms more productive and reduces operating costs, which include supply chain; engineering, modifications and maintenance; digital aviation and analytics; and training and professional services.
Boeing has been working with the Indian Navy and Indian Air Force on mission requirements of the P-8I maritime reconnaissance and anti-submarine aircraft and the C-17 Globemaster III strategic airlifter. Boeing is also working to ensure that crews are trained and ready to operate the soon-to-be-delivered AH-64 Apache and the CH-47 Chinook.
As Pratyush Kumar, President, Boeing India said, “Boeing remains focused on executing on commitments to customers on schedule and cost. The Indian Navy and Indian Air Force can be assured of achieving exceptional operational capability and readiness of their P-8I and C-17 fleet.”
The P-8 and C-17 have demonstrated an excellent record in supporting the missions
they have been deployed for and the forces have expressed satisfaction about their operational readiness. Both aircraft were at the forefront of rescue and humanitarian aid efforts following natural disasters that affected Bihar, Jammu and Kashmir and Odisha states. The C-17 was deployed to evacuate people and deliver relief supplies. The P- 8I has been used extensively in maritime reconnaissance missions by the Indian Navy, including performing aerial reconnaissance and gathering data for planning relief efforts during Cyclone Hudhud.
P-8I: enhancing IN’s Long Range Maritime Reconnaissance and AntiSubmarine capability
In June last year, Boeing received a threeyear contract to support the Indian Navy’s P-8I long range maritime surveillance and anti-submarine aircraft fleet “to achieve enhanced operational capability and readiness.” The contract came as India’s P-8I fleet surpassed 11,000 flight hours last year, a milestone for which the squadron operating the aircraft received a citation from Admiral Sunil Lanba, Chief of Naval Staff for the Indian Navy.
Since its induction in the Indian Navy, Boeing has been supporting the P-8I fleet to ensure high rates of mission readiness. The Indian Navy has successfully used the P-8I on a number of occasions for SAR missions during Cyclone Ockhi, maritime patrol missions during the recent Maldives crises and multi-nation exercises such as Malabar. “The support contract continues the service Boeing provides under the programme’s current initial production contract. This contract will substantially bolster Boeing’s performance-based support to the Indian Navy and should maintain or increase the operational capability of the eight aircraft fleet.”
In addition to initial P-8I training for Indian Navy pilots, mission system operators and maintenance technicians, Boeing and the Indian Navy are also in discussions for a training solution to support P-8I crews. Dedicated support will be provided to maintain the simulators and courseware, ensuring maximum availability. “The indigenous, ground-based training system for the P-8I will allow Indian Navy crews to increase proficiency in a shorter time, without using finite fatigue life or putting the aircraft at risk during a training scenario.”
“Boeing has a proven performance record of providing training solutions for naval customers that enable them to maximise operational capabilities. The overarching goal for the P- 8I Training Solution is to allow crews to achieve realworld proficiency without consuming valuable airframe life or impacting aircraft mission availability,” stated Howard Berry director, Global Sales and Marketing, International Government Services for Global Services.
The Indian Navy operates eight P-8I long-range maritime reconnaissance and anti-submarine warfare aircraft at INS Rajali. Boeing is also contracted to deliver four additional P-8I aircraft to the Indian Navy with deliveries to commence in 2020.
C-17 Globemaster III for strategic airlift missions
In 2017, the Indian Air Force’s No. 81 Squadron with the C-17 Globemaster III fleet achieved over 12,000 flight hours since induction in 2013. As a vital part of the Indian Air Force strategic airlift capability, Boeing and Air Force teams work together to ensure the military transport aircraft is always ready to successfully conduct relief and humanitarian missions domestically and internationally.
The Indian Air Force presently operates ten C-17 strategic airlifters that Boeing delivered in 2013 and 2014. Boeing works with the Indian Air Force to provide training, sustainment services and modernisation of its C-17s through the C-17 Globemaster III Integrated Sustainment Programme ( GISP) contract. “This has resulted in unprecedented levels of mission capable rates that enable the IAF to use the aircraft for the missions they want.”
The C- 17 have been used for humanitarian missions during Cyclone Hudhud and flood operations in Bihar and Jammu and Kashmir when the C-17s airlifted people from the affected areas and ensured the delivery of vital aid and assistance.
The high mission readiness rates are a result of Boeing’s C-17 GISP, virtual fleet arrangement, which ensures mission readiness by providing all C-17 customers access to an extensive support network for worldwide parts availability and economies of scale. “This makes the C- 17 more affordable to own and operate. The C-17 GISP is a system-level partnership, where the customer pays for readiness, rather than specific parts or services.”
Initial qualification training of Indian Air Force C-17 crews was conducted by the US Air Force at Joint Base Charleston in South Carolina. In addition, the C-17 Simulator Training Centre, established by Boeing and Mahindra Defence Systems to provide training services to the Indian Air Force, completed over 1700 hours of training for aircrews and loadmasters that operate the C-17 Globemaster III in July 2017. The Centre has maintained a serviceability state of 100 percent.
File photo of the AH-64D Apache helicopter
IAF’s C-17 Globemaster III strategic airlifter
Indian Navy’s P-8I maritime reconnaissance and anti-submarine aircraft
The CH-47F Chinook: soon in Indian colours