India’s Hindustan Aeronautics (HAL) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with BAE Systems UK for Hawk Mk132 upgrade and development of combat Hawk for Indian and export markets.
The agreement also covers maintenance solutions for supporting Jaguar and Hawk fleet.
HAL chairman and managing director T Suvarna Raju said: "It is important that both the teams finalise the scope of Hawk Mk132 upgrades and other work packages under the MoU agreement at the earliest."
An advanced jet trainer (AJT), Hawk Mk 132 is designed to provide basic, advanced flying and weapons training.
This dual seat multi-purpose aircraft is installed with inertial navigation / global positioning system, head-up display and hands-on throttle and stick controls.
It can be either used as a ground attack aircraft or for air defence and is also capable of operating at night and performing a wide range of aerobatic manoeuvres.
In addition, the aircraft has seven hard points to carry external stores with a possible 12 types of combinations to carry the stores.
The first aircraft of this type was delivered to the Indian Air Force in August 2008 under a production programme of 42 Hawks.
In July 2010, a second contract was signed between IAF and HAL for 40 Hawk AJT and associated equipment. The production aircraft under this deal is expected to completed 2016-17.
In February this year, HAL awarded a £18.5m contract to BAE to provide support services for the Indian Military’s Hawk Mk132 advanced jet trainer aircraft.
It covers a comprehensive package comprising ground support equipment, spares, support, and training for the aircraft.
Image: The Indian Air Force’s Hawk Mk132 aircraft during takeoff. Photo: courtesy of Hindustan Aeronautics Limited.