Airbus Defence and Space, the manufacturer of C295 tactical aircraft, received approval from the Directorate General of Aeronautical Quality Assurance (DGAQA), the regulatory authority, to produce detailed parts and assemblies in India.
The approval from the Indian regulator is significant in the C295 aircraft deal to manufacture the tactical airlifter domestically. India formalised the acquisition of 56 Airbus C295 aircraft to replace the ageing Avro-748 Fleet of the Indian Air Force. The first 16 aircraft will be delivered in a “fly-away” condition, while the remaining 40 will be manufactured and assembled by Tata Advanced Systems Limited (TASL).
The certification is significant in creating a complete industrial ecosystem to manufacture the aircraft and ensure a steady supply line of parts in India for the aircraft. The first 16 C295s will be assembled in Seville, Spain and the first C295 was delivered to the Indian Air Force in September last year in a ceremony in Seville.
Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal VR Chaudhari received the aircraft at the aerospace major’s production facility.
“This certification demonstrates the continuing trust and confidence of DGAQA in Airbus quality standards. All detailed parts for the C295 will be manufactured in India under exacting Airbus quality standards,” Jorge Tamarit Degenhardt, Vice President – Head of the C295 India Programme, Airbus Defence and Space, said.
“We continue to work in strong partnership with Tata Advanced Systems Limited to apply a robust and comprehensive quality framework for successful aircraft manufacturing in India for the C295 ‘Make in India’ programme under the policy of Aatmanirbhar Bharat,” he added.
The C295 Deal
In October 2022, Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone of the manufacturing facility for 295 planes in Vadodara. It will be the first military aircraft manufactured in India by a private consortium.
The Avro-748 fleet entered the Indian Air Force almost six decades ago and formed the workhorse of the Air Force’s transport fleet, which included the An-12s, An-32, Dornier 228, Ilyushin-76 and was later joined by C-17 Globemaster, C-130J Hercules. The Avro-748 is a turboprop medium airlift originally manufactured by Avro and later by Hawker Siddeley and is known as Hawker Siddeley HS 748.
The C295 is known to be a superior aircraft used for tactical transport of up to 71 troops or 50 paratroopers and for logistic operations to locations that are not accessible to current heavier aircraft. Six pilots from the IAF and 20 technicians have already undergone extensive training at the Seville facility.
The aircraft can airdrop paratroops and loads and can be used for casualty or medical evacuation. It is capable of performing special missions as well as disaster response and maritime patrol duties.