Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, Safran to create JV for helicopter engines

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Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) has agreed to form a joint venture (JV) with French aerospace company Safran Helicopter Engines to develop helicopter engines.

A memorandum of understanding (MoU) in this regard was signed by R. Madhavan, the CMD of the Indian state-owned aerospace and defence company, and Safran Helicopter Engines CEO Franck Saudo.

Both the partners will set up a new aero-engine company in India, which will be exclusively focused on developing, producing, selling, and supporting helicopter engines. Among its primary objectives of the JV will be to address the requirements of Hindustan Aeronautics Limited and the Indian Ministry of Defence’s future helicopters, including the 13-ton Indian Multi-Role Helicopter (IMRH).

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R. Madhavan said: “Safran Helicopter Engines has been our valued partner for several decades. We now look forward to utilize this opportunity to leverage HAL’s experience in manufacturing of more than 15 types of aircraft and helicopter engines to jointly co-develop and manufacture engine with immediate focus on IMRH and its naval variant the Deck Based Multi Role Helicopter (DBMRH).

“This partnership will involve and utilize the Indian Defence manufacturing ecosystem within India.”

Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, Safran Helicopter Engines to create joint venture for helicopter engines in India

Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, Safran Helicopter Engines to create joint venture for helicopter engines in India. Photo courtesy of Ajai Shukla/Wikipedia.org.

Hindustan Aeronautics Limited and Safran Helicopter Engines have various partnerships, including the Shakti engine, which powers helicopters produced by the former.

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Through their Helicopter Engines MRO (HE-MRO) joint venture in Goa, Hindustan Aeronautics Limited and Safran Helicopter Engines will also offer maintenance, repair and overhaul services for the Shakti and TM333 engines that are in service with the Indian Armed Forces. The joint venture will begin operations by the end of next year.

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Franck Saudo said: “The creation of this new joint venture marks a turning point in our relationship with HAL and the Indian MoD with the development and production of a new generation of helicopter engine.

“We are proud to further expand our structuring partnership with HAL, which began more than 50 years ago, and which was recently illustrated with the development and production of the Shakti engine and the inauguration of our joint venture HE-MRO.

“With a fleet of over 1,000 engines, India’s Armed Forces are one of the largest operators of Safran-designed helicopter engines”.

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