A new entrant into the Aerospace and Defence (A&D) sector, Lohia Group has its focus on cutting edge composites technology. The Kanpur based company acquired Israel based Light & Strong Ltd, Israel’s largest private producer of aerospace focused carbon fibre composite components for Israel’s Aerospace and Defence industry in February 2019. And has in the process it became the first Indian company to acquire and own an international composites company.
Ahead of the DefExpo – 2020, Anurag Lohia – Director, Lohia Group, talks to Huma Siddiqui. Excerpts from the interview:
What will the company manufacture?
Lohia Aerospace Systems is an aerospace composites components manufacturing company. And we will be manufacturing components and assemblies for aerospace, space, military and naval applications made out of carbon fibre, glass fibre, Kevlar and other composite materials.
Our product range that we will be displaying at the DEFEXPO will include parts and assemblies of the complete UAV structures, civil and cargo aircraft structural and interior components, Radomes.
More about the joint venture, you have with the Israel Company.
The Lohia Group acquired Israel based company – Light & Strong limited in February 2019. It is now a wholly-owned subsidiary of Lohia Aerospace Systems.
Light & Strong (L&S) is an exclusively Aerospace focused composites component manufacturing company. It is a well nationally renowned tier 1 supplier to the Israeli A&D sector and the Israeli Defence forces. L&S is Israel’s largest privately-owned composites manufacturing company for the aerospace & Defence industry.
The unique benefit of having a completely owned company is that our visions are completely aligned. L&S and Lohia Aerospace for our customers is one company, with 2 manufacturing units (1 in Israel and 1 in India). L&S is supporting Lohia Aerospace in various aspects from On-the-Job manpower training, support in certifications to being the hub for all our design engineering needs. L&S’s management has cumulatively over 100 years of aerospace composites experience between them and they have been a fountain of knowledge for all aspects of our facility planning, construction, equipment, training, and certification. The flow of our people between the 2 facilities are constant and completely synced.
What will be the focus?
Our focus is to be a one-stop solutions provider for all things composites. We intend to become part of global supply chains for aerospace composites requirements of Indian and international OEMs for both components and composite focused assemblies.
What role are you playing in Skill India?
Our complete production team is being manned exclusively by the youth of our great state. We have recruited our technicians from the various ITIs of Uttar Pradesh and our first two batches of 20 people are already being trained for aerospace composite production at our Israeli facility since October 2019. Some of our newly minted composite maestros are undertaking trial production at our facility since January 2020. The Lohia Group already runs a large full-time training institute spread over nearly 10 acres. The Lohia Aerospace personnel will impart training to not only new trainee recruits for Lohia Aerospace’s growing requirements but also to external individuals from UP who want to learn this highly technical skill and find exciting job prospects nationally or internationally.
What samples are you displaying in the expo?
We are showcasing 3 families of samples manufactured at our Kanpur facility:
Aerospace composite components – These are carbon/glass / phenolic resin fibre components that go into aerospace platforms such as Radomes, UAVs and Aircraft.
Aircraft interior assemblies – We manufacture complex assemblies of glass fibre prepregs and phenolic resin for civil aircraft that are directly fitted into the interiors of aircrafts such as complete assemblies for overhead storage units, kitchen galley and raft storage boxes, etc.
Large aircraft models made from Carbon fibre to showcase our skills in producing complete UAV structures.