Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Indian Contract for C-17 Globemaster III Saves Boeing And 25,000 American Jobs

The latest news about Government Of India approving the purchase of C-17 Globemaster III aircraft was a foregone conclusion yet it was important for it to become official.The delivery should begin in 2 years time once the contract is signed.

Boeing's President Mr Chadewick is sure that these 10 aircrafts are not the last of the Indian order but they may be go for 6 more aircrafts in due course. He was elated with this news because the last order for his factory at Long Beach will be delivered on 2012 after which there are no orders for these aircrafts. which would mean laying off 25000 employees and an economic impact of 5.8 billion USD.

As reported earlier on this site India had finalized this deal quite some time ago because Indian Army and Indian Air Force need these aircrafts for rapid deployment. C-17's are heavy lift aircraft which can land on short run-ways, it will give Indian Army the capability to quickly transfer tanks or other heavy equipment to the forward area's.

Currently this strategic capability is vow-fully inadequate with the Illyushin-76(Gajraj) and Antonov-32 aircrafts. Though India has gone in for upgrade of AN-32 fleet, which Ukraine is doing it for India.

Just compare the the capability of IL-76 and C-17 aircraft.

  • Maximum payload of IL-76 is 88,185 lb(40,000kg) while for C-17 it is 170,090lb(nearly 77,151kg).
  • Maximum Takeoff Weight for IL-76 it is 374,785 lb(169,999 kg) while for C-17 it is 585,000 lb(265,351 kg).
  • Range of these aircrafts with full weight for IL-76 it is 4,000 km and for C-17 it is 4,444 km
  • Engines are different too IL-76 uses Four Aviadvigatel (Soloviev) D30KP with 26,455 lb thrust each. C-17 uses Four Pratt & Whitney PW2040 (military designation F117-PW-100) 40,440 pounds thrust each.
  • Cruise speed for IL-76 is .69 Mach while for C-17 Globemaster III it is Mach 0.74 to Mach 0.77.
  • Service Ceiling for IL-76 aircraft is 42,700 ft compare that to C-17's service ceiling of 45,000 ft

Last factor which we must look into is that IL-76 is of 60's design while C-17 Globemaster is a newer aircraft thus the electronics are much better than IL-76. I think IL-76 has served well but C-17 will add an extra punch to the IAF and Indian Army's capability to deploy quickly to forward area's.

Watch C-17 Globemaster Land on a short runway using its thrust reversing capability

Watch how the C-17 Globemaster III lands on a dirt runway in Afghanistan without any problem