First indigenously overhauled  Su30 MKI handed over to IAF

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 27 Oct 2018 09:33:09


Staff Reporter,


THE first indigenously overhauled Su30 MKI fighter aircraft was handed over to an operational squadron of the Indian Air Force (IAF) on Friday. It was an important milestone for the 11 Base Repair Depot (BRD) at Ojhar in Nashik, functioning under IAF Maintenance Command headquartered at Nagpur. 

Air Marshal Hemant Sharma, an officer decorated with Ati Vishisht Seva Medal (AVSM) Vishisht Seva Medal (VSM), Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief of Maintenance Command, handed over the indigenously overhauled Su30 MKI aircraft to Air Marshal H S Arora, an officer decorated with AVSM, Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief of South Western Air Command, at an impressive ceremony held at Air Force Station, Ojhar. 

A large number of senior IAF dignitaries form Air Headquarters, New Delhi; Headquarters Maintenance Command, Nagpur; South Western Air Command, Gandhinagar, Gujarat; senior officers of HAL (Nasik Division), Defence Research and Development Organisation, and Directorate General of Aeronautical Quality Assurance witnessed the historic handing/taking over function of the first indigenously overhauled Su30 MKI aircraft.

During the function, Air Marshal Hemant Sharma and Air Marshal H S Arora applauded the relentless efforts put in by personnel of Air Force Station, Ojhar. Air Cmde Samir V Borade, an officer decorated with VSM, Air Officer Commanding, Air Force Station Ojhar, thanked all the air warriors and personnel of HAL (Nasik Division) for their active involvement and support in achieving this important milestone for the depot and the IAF. He said that with this capability the 11 BRD had exhibited what the unit was capable of and was ever ready for meeting the new challenges.

For the 11 BRD at Ojhar in Nashik, which functions under Maintenance Command of the IAF, October 26, 2018 was a red letter day as the first indigenously overhauled Su30 MKI aircraft was handed over to South Western Air Command for an operational squadron. The 11 BRD is the only fighter aircraft repair depot of the IAF. It undertakes repair and overhaul of frontline fighters such as MIG-29 and Sukhoi30 MKI. It was established on April 29, 1974 and subsequently renamed as 11 Base Repair Depot on January 1, 1975.

According to Group Capt Basantkumar Pande, Public Relation Officer and Spokesperson, Ministry of Defence (Nagpur Region), the Sukhoi aircraft was being overhauled previously by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL). With new acquisitions, as HAL’s load increased, now the Maintenance Command and HAL both are working on overhaul on Su30 MKI aircraft.

The 11 BRD depot progressively built and improved the technical expertise and infrastructure over the years and by 1983 it had overhauled 100 Su-7 aircraft. From 1983 to 1988, the depot also undertook overhaul of MIG-21 and 28 aircraft were produced. Later, overhaul facility for MIG-23 aircraft was set up in 1986 and 248 aircraft were overhauled till May 2015. Overhaul of MIG-29 aircraft commenced in the year 1996 and presently, the ‘upgradation of MIG-29’ and repair and overhaul of Su-30 MKI aircraft is being undertaken at the depot. In addition, the 11 BRD is the only agency to undertake overhaul of ejection seats and role equipment of Su-30 MKI aircraft, both for the IAF and HAL.

The first Su-30 MKI aircraft overhauled by the 11 BRD under Maintenance Command successfully took off on April 24, 2018. It has been flight-tested for its airworthiness, before inducting it for operational tasks in a flying squadron.