India’s Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) has revealed its intention to venture into building amphibian aircraft when HAL-TAD Kanpur floated an RFI (Request For Information) seeking a partnership for design and development of such an aircraft.

RFI invites information, from reputed design agencies or manufacturers only, for consultancy or to partner in design and development of an HAL built Do-228 aircraft to a Seaplane version, but HAL is also working on larger Conceptual design and development of Amphibious Aircraft which could rival China’s AVIC AG600 in the region in a long run.

Presented to selected few in National media, HAL is carrying out conceptual studies to design and develop an Amphibious Aircraft which can be used to meet multiple requirements of Indian armed forces as well as of the Government. As per HAL, they are plans to develop 3 Configuration of this Amphibious Aircraft to meet different roles and requirements.

Basic Configuration: To Carry out Long Range Search & Rescue, Utility missions, Transport missions, patrol aircraft and Troop transport missions.

Civilian Configuration: To be used as a Civilian transporter to connect to islands and other regional countries. Can also be used as Civilian aircraft for regional connectivity since it will also be equipped with retractable landing gears.

Military Configuration: To be used in Anti-Submarine Warfare roles, Anti-Surface unit Warfare, Anti-Piracy/Narcotics/People smuggling, Combat Search & Rescue, Special Forces support, General Maritime Surveillance and a wide range of maritime C4ISR and combat roles and missions.

Below is Comparison sheet with other leading Amphibious Aircraft currently in production.

HAL also has released tentative design concepts of the Amphibious Aircraft and currently is holding the discussions with Indian Navy and Coastguard to gauge their requirements and their capabilities. HAL has not revealed any timeline for development of such an aircraft but it can be predicted it is still in infancy and if not few years but might require a full decade for it to become reality.

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