India, US sign
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India, US sign $1billion contract for six “Super Hercules” aircrafts
December 30, 2013
India and the US have signed another mega defence deal worth $1.01 billion in which the US will supply six additional C-130J “Super Hercules” aircraft. The “letter of offer and acceptance” for the six new four-engine C-130Js, which will be delivered within 3 years, was inked under the US government’s “Foreign Military Sales” (FMS) programme.
The Indian Air Force already has six C-130Js tactical airlift aircraft, which are based at the Hindon airbase on the outskirts of Delhi. The upcoming six new C-130Js will be stationed at Panagarh in West Bengal.
India’s first Mountain Strike Force: XVII Corps
India’s new mountain strike corps which has been named XVII Corps will also have its headquarters in Panagarh. The XVII Corps with a total of over 80,000 soldiers, is being brought up by the Army in a project worth around Rs 90,000 crore. This new corps will fill operational voids along the 4,057-km Line of Actual Control (LAC) as well as add to the Indian Army’s ground offensive capabilities against China for the first time.
Factbox: C-130J ‘Super Hercules’
Manufactured by the United States.
World’s most advanced and tactical aircraft.
Primarily designed to support India’s special operations requirement.
Equipped with an Infrared Detection Set (IDS), the aircraft can perform precision low-level flying, airdrops and landing in blackout conditions.
Self-protection systems and other features are included to ensure aircraft survivability in hostile air defense environments. The aircraft also is equipped with air-to-air receiver refueling capability for extended range operations.
Ideally suited to India’s mission environment, which often involves operating out of austere, high-elevation airstrips in hot conditions.
Powered by four Rolls Royce AE2100 engines and Dowty six bladed props which provide the aircraft with tremendous power.
The aircraft has already demonstrated its responsiveness during the recent Uttarakhand flood disaster and 2012 Sikkim earthquake where it played a major role in relief operations.
The rugged aircraft demonstrated its agility when IAF landed it at the world’s highest airstrip in Daulat Beg Oldi, in J&K, the place where Indian and Chinese troops had a stand-off recently. The aircraft showed that it can even land at a small forward airbase on a semi-prepared runway.
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