Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd is set to start production at its Strategic Electronics Factory at Kasaragod (Kerala) on November 17, 2012. This factory will produce advanced avionics for aircraft and helicopters.
“Avionics plays a major role in functioning of modern aircraft and contributes significantly to the value of an aircraft/ helicopter. Considering huge potential of Avionics systems in the coming years, a new, state-of-the-art manufacturing facility for a variety of Avionics has been established at Kasaragod. This would result in better operational effectiveness and improved customer satisfaction”, said R K Tyagi, Chairman, HAL.
Based on the initiative of the Kerala Government in providing assistance to industries to set up their plants in the state, Kasaragod was short listed on the availability of adequate land, power, water and better logistic facilities. Kerala Government allotted 196 acres of land for setting up the new unit. The foundation stone for the construction of the factory buildings was laid by the Defence Minister, A K Antony on August 23, 2008.
The first phase of this factory has been setup at the cost of Rs. 66 crores. At present, seven buildings are dedicated for various activities like production, administration, technical services, materials management, security and for Government Agencies (Air Force and DGAQA).
Presently the production of Airborne Special Purpose Computers like Mission computer, Display Processor, Radar Computers, Open Architect Mission computer etc. for SU-30, LCA, MiG-27 upgrade have been taken up at this factory. This factory will be further expanded in phase-II to undertake the manufacture of Avionics for medium multi-role combat aircraft (MMRCA) like Automatic Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) Radar, Electronic Warfare (EW) Suite, Communication and Navigation equipments besides other indigenous projects like Softnet Defined Radio, Interrogate Friend-Foe (IFF) Mark-XII.
The facilities and expertise acquired at this factory for advanced avionics of MMRCA would be used for various upcoming projects like Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft (FGFA), Multirole Transport Aircraft (MTA), Light Utility Helicopter (LUH), Light Combat Helicopter (LCH), Medium Lift Helicopter (MLH), Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV).
The required manpower has been trained and positioned for carrying out production.
There will be need for substantial augmentation in manpower in phase-II due to number of projects planned including MMRCA. The expansion of this factory will also lead to growth of ancillary industries which in-turn will generate secondary employment opportunities and enhance skill-set in this area.