The Indian Air Force Mi-17 V5 chopper, which was at work doing rescue operations in calamity-hit Uttarakhand went down during its third sortie on Tuesday. The crash claimed 20 lives including 5 IAF men. Below are seven facts about this IAF aircraft.
IAF Vayu Shakti 2010 (18 of 30) Mi-17 helicopter firing MAG gun
India has Mi-17 V 5 copters in Indian Air Force, Ministry of Home Affairs and Central Paramilitary Forces.
The helicopters have strengthened gearboxes to enable high-altitude operations.
India has customised Mi-17 V5s with brand new KNEI-8 navigation, information-display and cueing systems. It features four multifunction displays instead of the dial instruments found on previous Mi-17 models.
The Mi-17 can carry 36 armed soldiers internally or 4,500 kg of cargo on a sling.
The Mi-17 V5 is equipped with state-of-the-art avionics and navigation systems like on-board weather radar and autopilot. It also has advanced night-vision equipment and a glass cockpit.
The M-17 is used to ferry troops and VIPs.
The Mi-17 V5 chopper is a medium-lift helicopter which can carry over 5 tonnes of load.
In 2008, India had signed a deal with Russia to supply 80 Mi-17s to augment its existing fleet of around 150 Mi-8 and Mi-17 medium-lift choppers. The choppers were ordered following a spate of natural disasters following the tsunami in 2004 and heavy snowfall related deaths in Kashmir in 2005.