New Delhi: An Indian Air Force Mi-17V-5 helicopter with Chief of Defense Staff General Bipin Rawat and 13 others on board crashed near Coonoor, Tamil Nadu, on Wednesday. The 63-year-old was traveling in a Russian-made Mi-17V-5 chopper, which is one of the most advanced military transport helicopters.
General Bipin Rawat, 63, took charge as India’s first Chief of Defense Staff in January 2019. The position was set up with the aim of integrating the three services – the Army, the Navy and the Air Force.
The Mi-17V-5 helicopters are extremely reliable and is also used to ferry VIPs, including the President and the Prime Minister. The helicopters were purchased and inducted by the Indian Air Force between 2013 and 2018.
Here Is All You Need To Know On The Mi-17V-5 Helicopter
The Mi-17V-5 is the latest twin-engine version of the Russian Mi-17 transport helicopter and is designed to carry personnel, equipment and cargo. It can also carry cargo on the outside as the helicopter is fitted with an external sling.
The Mi-17V-5 helicopter is primaruly used for tactical air drops, destroying targets on the ground and carring the wounded. The helicopter is capable of operating in any geographical and climatic conditions and is used regularly for high-altitude operations in India.
It can also operate in hot and desert conditions and has a high accuracy in target approach through the use of a satellite navigation system, according to the website of Rosoboronexport, the Russian arms supplier.
The helicopter has a maximum takeoff weight of 13,000kg. It can transport either 36 armed soldiers internally or 4,500kg of load on a sling.
The helicopter is also equipped with modern avionics — a heavily armored cockpit and a self-defense system against heat-seeking missiles. It can carry arms like unguided rockets, cannons, and small arms.
“Its armament system includes unguided rockets (up to 80 S-8 80mm unguided aerial rockets), cannons (suspended pods with 23mm cannons and 250 rounds each) and small arms,” the website says.
The Mi-17V-5 helicopter has a maximum speed of 250km/h, and a standard range of 580km. It can be extended to 1,065 km when fitted with two auxiliary fuel tanks. It can fly at a maximum altitude of 6,000 m.
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