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Home arrow News arrow Business News arrow NAL to invite joint venture participation in RTA project, EoI next month
NAL to invite joint venture participation in RTA project, EoI next month Print E-mail
Written by Satish   
Tuesday, 23 November 2010
Hyderabad: National Aerospace Laboratories (NAL), Bangalore, is looking for joint venture participation both from India and abroad for the design, development and manufacturing of the Regional Transport Aircraft (RTA).

According to NAL director A R Upadhya, the Center has directed NAL to design a framework to form a joint venture (JV) for carrying out the RTA project through a public-private partnership mode. He said that an  EoI (expressions of interest) will be issued next month in this regard.

Upadhya, who was attending the Aviation Conclave in Hyderabad, said that the government had given NAL the mandate to do a one-year feasibility study for the RTA and the feasibility report would be submitted to the government by April 2011.

He said that NAL will be setting up a Design Bureau with 100 people, including experienced people from the Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA), Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL).It would take about seven years for the first aircraft to be rolled out after receiving government approval.

The Regional Transport Aircraft (RTA) designed by NAL will have a range of 600 kilometres to 800 kilometres making it conducive to travel within India due to the close proximity of cities within the country. The RTA will be a 70 to 90 seat aircraft and it will compete with planes of French-Italian aircraft maker Avions de Transport Régional (ATR), which dominates the turbo-prop aircraft market in India. The RTA can utilise old unused airstrips since it has a runway requirement of around 900 metres.With reference to the choice of engines for the RTA, Upadhya said that NAL was considering both optimised turboprop (turbo propeller) and optimised turbofan .

According to Upadhya, about 50 per cent the country's population is living close to the smaller airfields, each with 3,000-5,000 sq ft runway and around 120 such airfields had been identified across the country for facilitating landing of RTAs.  Only 70 of the 450 airfields in the country is presently operational and Upadhya is confident that most of the airfields have the potential to be converted to airports.

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