Tata Advanced Systems (TASL) has entered into an agreement with Lockheed Martin to begin the production of wings for the F-16 Fighting Falcon fighter aircraft in India.
To be manufactured for export, the strategic initiative will enable TASL to become the provider of F-16 wings for all future customers and expand its business for the aircraft’s global supply chain.
This will also allow the company to further enhance its capability to address global aerospace requirements of fighter jets while strengthening the government’s ‘Make in India’ programme.
TASL chief executive officer and managing director Sukaran Singh said: “This positions TASL as a global provider of F-16 wings in future. TASL and Lockheed Martin, through a long-standing joint-venture, have been manufacturing airframe components of the C-130J aircraft and S-92 Sikorsky helicopter at the Hyderabad facility.
“This development now again gives us an excellent opportunity to showcase our technological expertise and advance our capability development, as we reinforce our commitment to both the Indian and global aerospace industry.
“The production of the F-16 wings in India, for global application, is set to place the country at the centre of the world’s largest fighter aircraft ecosystem and make it a preferred destination for aerospace manufacturing.”
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F-16 Fighting Falcon is a fourth generation multi-role combat jet that serves a critical role for fighter aircraft fleets of 28 customers across the world.
With a length of 49.3ft, the aircraft has a wingspan of 31ft and can travel at a speed of 1,500mph.
In April, TASL and Lockheed Martin’s joint venture Tata Lockheed Martin Aerostructures (TLMAL) inaugurated India’s innovative metal-to-metal bonding facility at Adibatla, Hyderabad.