Tata Boeing Aerospace (TBAL) today announced the delivery of the first AH-64 Apache combat helicopter fuselage from its Hyderabad facility. The fuselage, which has been delivered ahead of the scheduled time, will now be transported to the US aviation major’s AH-64 Apache manufacturing facility in Mesa (Arizona) for integration into the final assembly line, the company said in a release.
This delivery also comes within a year of the aerospace joint venture facility becoming operational. “The delivery of the fuselage within a year of the facility being operational is a huge boost to indigenous manufacturing,” Sukaran Singh, Managing Director and chief executive officer, Tata Advanced Systems, said.
TBAL is a joint venture between Boeing and Tata Sons wholly-owned subsidiary Tata Advanced Systems. The government had finalised an order with Boeing for the supply of 22 AH-64E Apache helicopters in September 2015. The deliveries of these choppers are to commence from early next year.
“This is a major step forward in Boeing and TataAdvanced Systems continued commitment to make advanced, high quality aerostructures in India. As we accelerate our efforts, we see this as a major step towards future opportunities to pursue the co-development of integrated systems in aerospace and defence,” said Pratyush Kumar, president, Boeing India.
Inaugurated in March this year, the Hyderabad facility will be the sole global producer of fuselages for AH-64 Apache helicopter delivered by Boeing to its global customers including the US Army. Besides, it will also produce secondary structures and vertical spar boxes for the multi-role combat helicopter.