The Indian Navy has successfully inducted the first Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL)-built Hawk Mk132 advanced jet trainer (AJT) aircraft, at INS Dega, Vishakhapatnam.
Naval chief of staff, Admiral D K Joshi, said: "We are proud of Indian manufactured products and it is evident from the fact that HAL made aircraft such as Vampire and Kirans are with us for decades."
The Indian Navy had received the first Hawk AJT in September 2013, as part of previously awarded contract to HAL in 2010 for the production and delivery of 17 Hawk aircraft for the Indian Navy and 40 aircraft for the Indian Air Force, under the license from BAE Systems.
HAL is scheduled to deliver the first five AJT aircraft to the Indian Navy in the current fiscal, followed by remaining aircraft in next three years.
Powered by a single Rolls Royce Adour Mk.871 engine, the Hawk dual-seat multi-purpose aircraft has been designed for basic and advanced weapons pilot training, as well as for ground attack and flying training.
Capable of using as a ground attack aircraft or for air defence, the AJT can be flown at night and can carry out a wide range of aerobatic manoeuvres.
The dual seat multi-purpose aircraft will also provide most efficient and cost-effective method of training pilots by integrating air and ground based elements.
Cleared for instrument (IFR) flying and for solo instrument flying from the front cockpit only, the Hawk aircraft features low wings and an all-metal structure, an integrated navigation / attack system and radio and inertial navigation systems.
Image: Indian Navy and HAL officials during Hawk aircraft induction ceremony. Photo: copyright of Hindustan Aeronautics Limited.