GE Aerospace seals groundbreaking deal with HAL to co-manufacture cutting-edge fighter jet engines within India’s borders

HAL

In a momentous declaration, GE Aerospace revealed on Thursday that it has forged a groundbreaking agreement with Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) to engage in a collaborative effort to manufacture fighter jet engines for the Indian Air Force’s Light Combat Aircraft (LCA)-Mk-II, also known as Tejas.

This announcement took place during the inaugural state visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the United States, where he was graciously invited by President Joe Biden.

According to a statement released by the US company, “The agreement encompasses the potential joint production of GE Aerospace’s F414 engines in India, and GE Aerospace is actively working with the US government to secure the necessary export authorization for this endeavor.”

In the statement, the pact with HAL is described as a “vital component” in bolstering defense cooperation between India and the United States.

H. Lawrence Culp Jr., Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of GE and CEO of GE Aerospace, hailed the agreement as a historic milestone made possible through the enduring partnership between India and HAL. He stated, “This agreement places us in a formidable position to create a range of products in India, including the F404 engine currently powering the LCA Mk1 and LCA Mk1A aircraft, as well as GE Aerospace’s selection for the prototype development, testing, and certification of the AMCA program with our F414-INS6 engine.”

This pact assumes significance as India has traditionally sourced its military aircraft from Russia and European consortia. Most recently, the Indian Air Force procured 36 Rafale fighter jets from Dassault, a renowned French manufacturer of combat aircraft.

Additionally, GE will continue collaborating with the Indian government on the Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA) Mk2 engine program.

HAL

“We take great pride in contributing to the realization of President Biden and Prime Minister Modi’s vision for enhanced coordination between our two nations. Our F414 engines are unparalleled and will bring substantial economic and national security benefits to both countries as we assist our customers in producing top-notch engines to meet the requirements of their military fleet,” asserted the US firm.

Presently, HAL employs GE 404 engines for the production of 83 light combat aircraft designated for the Indian Air Force.

GE Aerospace has been operating in India for over four decades, actively participating in various facets of the industry, including engines, avionics, services, engineering, manufacturing, and local sourcing.

The F404 and F414 engines from GE Aerospace have played a significant role in the development and production of the LCA Mk1 and LCA Mk2 programs. To date, 75 F404 engines have been delivered, with an additional 99 on order for the LCA Mk1A. Furthermore, as part of an ongoing development program for the LCA Mk2, 8 F414 engines have already been supplied by the US firm.

Leave a comment