Indian Mi-26s headed to Russia for upgrades, life extension

Russian_Air_Force_Mi-26_Beltyukov

The Indian Air Force’s (IAF’s) two Mi-26 ‘Halo’ heavy-lift helicopters are being sent to Russia to be overhauled and retrofitted over the next few months, officials said.

The helicopters, acquired in the late 1980s, are likely to be fitted with new flight computers, inertial navigation systems, terrain-following radar and advanced weather instrumentation to extend their total technical life (TTL) and keep them in service for another few years.

“The two retrofitted Mi-26s will supplement the 15 Chinook heavy lift helicopters that are presently under acquisition,” the IAF spokesman in New Delhi told IHS Jane’s on 9 June.

The IAF acquired four Mi-26s for INR814.20 million (USD1.31 million) between 1986 and 1989, although it originally planned to buy six.

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