India to sign contract with Airbus Defence for the purchase of 56 C-295 military transport aircraft

India to sign contract with Airbus Defence for the purchase of 56 C-295 military transport aircraft

The new C-295M is a stretched derivative of the CN-235 transporter, with a characteristic high-wing, rear-loader design

According to news published by the “Hindustan Times” on January 5, 2021, India will sign a contract with Airbus Defence for the purchase of 56 C-295 military transport aircraft to replace the aging fleet of Avro-748 planes in service with the Indian Air Force.

Citing the Hindustan Times, Airbus Defence and Space and Tata Advanced Systems Limited (TASL) will jointly execute the project to equip the air force with 56 C-295 transport aircraft under the Make-in-India initiative in the aerospace sector.

The first 16 C-295 military transport will be manufactured by Airbus Defence while 40 aircraft will be assembled in India. The approval of the contract by the Indian Ministry of Defense (MoD) is in the final phase and the official contract could be signed in the near future, according to the Indian MoD.

The new C-295 military transport aircraft will replace the Avro-748 that entered in service with the Indian Air Force, in the early 1960s.The Avro-748 a medium-sized turboprop airliner originally designed and initially produced by the British aircraft manufacturer Avro. It was the last aircraft to be developed by Avro prior to its dissolution.

The 748 Series 1 and Series 2 were license-produced in Indian manufacturer Hindustan Aeronautics (HAL), aircraft produced by the company were designated HAL-748. On 1 November 1961, the first Indian-assembled HAL-748 made its first flight. By the end of production, HAL had completed 89 Indian-built aircraft, 72 of which were for the Indian Air Force and 17 were delivered to national flag carrier Indian Airlines.

The C-295 is a twin-turboprop tactical military transport aircraft manufactured by Airbus Defence and Space in Spain. The aircraft is able to conduct multi-role operations worldwide under all weather conditions. It is fully certified and routinely operates day and night in combat missions in all weather extremes, from desert to maritime environments, from extremely hot to extremely cold temperatures.

The development of the C-295 started in November 1996 and the first prototype made its maiden flight on 28 November 1997. The first order for the C-295, from the Spanish Air Force for nine aircraft, was announced in April 1999. A total of 214 C-295 aircraft have been ordered by 78 countries as of April 2020.

The C-295 is powered by two Pratt & Whitney Canada PW127G turboprop engines, each rated at 1,972kW. It can fly at a maximum speed of 482 km/h with a maximum cruising range of 4,587 km with maximum fuel payload.

The C-295 can be used to transport cargo or personnel with a maximum payload capacity of 9,250 kg. It can be also configured to support multiple missions including VIP Transport, medical evacuation, military operations, air-to-air refueling as well as civic and humanitarian missions. As a military transport aircraft, it can carry up to 75 troops or 45 paratroopers. In the medical evacuation role, the aircraft has enough place to carry 27 litters (stretcher patients) and four medical staff. The cabin has a volume of 57m³ and can accommodate up to three light vehicles in cargo configuration.

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