The aircraft, with a new nomenclature - AN-32
RE - were inducted into the Indian Air Force (IAF)
at the Palam air force base here June 8 by the
Air Officer-in-Charge (Maintenance), Air Marshal
Joseph Neri, an IAF release said.
Noting that the IAF is "imbibing and exploiting
technological advances and adapting to the revolution
in military affairs," Neri said the re-equipped
planes will fulfill the tactical transport requirements
of the IAF up to and beyond 2025.
India had sent five AN-32s to Ukraine, of which
the remaining one will be inducted after its re-equipping.
According to industry sources, the aircraft has
also several US-made components now. Among them
are Honeywell's avionics upgrades like Weather
Radar, Traffic Collision Avoidance System (TCAS),
Displays, Radio Altimeter, and Distance Measuring
The Total Technical Life Extension (TTLE) was
carried out by Spets Techno Export, an Ukrainian
firm, which also ferried the aircraft to New Delhi
from Keiv, flying through Ankara, Cairo, Jeddah,
Doha and the United Arab Emirates.
The AN-32, the backbone of the IAF transport
fleet, has been operational since 1984 and the
104 planes in the IAF inventory have flown more
than 800,000 hours on various missions.
The IAF had, in 2005, conceived the TTLE for
the AN-32s to overcome maintenance challenges
due to ageing and obsolescence, while still left
with airframe hours and number of landings. The
$400 million upgrade contract was concluded in
The project envisages overhaul and re-equipment
of 40 aircraft at designer certified plants in
Ukraine at the rate of 10 aircraft annually, and
supply of material and transfer of technology
for the upgrade of remaining 64 aircraft at IAF's
No. 1 Base Repair Depot (BRD) at Kanpur.
The upgrade at Kiev is expected to be completed
by March 2014 and the upgrade at 1 BRD by March
The special features of AN-32 RE include modification
of cockpit layout, upgraded avionics, noise and
vibration reduction and enhancing crew comfort,
reliability and maintainability of the aircraft.
Sharing the experience of the aircrew flying
the upgraded aircraft from Kiev to New Delhi,
Group Captain R.C. Mohile, one of the captains
of the AN-32 RE and the team leader, said the
new equipment proved extremely useful and made
the complex navigation process involved on the
international route easy to negotiate.
IAF Director General (Aircraft) Air Marshal R.K.
Vashisht, senior defence ministry officials, senior
IAF officers, representatives of Spets Techno
Export and their aircrew were present at the induction