The Balakot air strike was the first time after the Indo-Pak war of 1971 that the IAF has been authorised to operate across the international border
In the recent past, the nation has witnessed a number of major events of importance related to national security. The first was the air strike carried out on February 26 this year by a fleet of 12 Mirage 2000 fighter aircraft of the Indian Air Force (IAF) against a terrorist training facility located in Balakot in the province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa across the international border in Pakistan. What is of tremendous significance is the fact this was the first time after the war with Pakistan in 1971 that the IAF has been authorised to operate across the international border. In this issue of SP’s Aviation, there is an article by Air Chief Marshal A.Y. Tipnis (Retd), former Chief of the Air Staff, that has a detailed and comprehensive analysis of the entire episode and the highly professional and commendable role played by the IAF as well as the Indian intelligence agencies. This hopefully would satisfy those who have been questioning the authenticity of the official reports on the event.
A month later on March 27 this year, scientists of the Indian Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), did the nation proud by successfully intercepting and destroying an Indian satellite in low earth orbit with an indigenously developed Anti-Satellite (ASAT) Missile. This meticulously coordinated and successful effort by the two leading scientific organisations of the nation has clearly established their capability to achieve a high degree of precision while undertaking in space missions of military significance that have direct relevance to national security. This issue of the magazine carries a report by Air Marshal S.B.P. Sinha (Retd) on the successful effort in space that has been designated as Mission Shakti.
A major business aviation event coming up is ABACE so all business aviation related companies will be headed towards Shanghai, China. A report by Ayushee Chaudhary on the growth of business aviation in China and emerging trends in this segment of the Chinese civil aviation industry is included in this issue.
On the civil aviation front, while the Indian aviation industry is forging ahead towards becoming the third largest in the world, the finance and leasing market does not appear to be on a very strong wicket. Satyendra Pandey, an experienced professional from the domain of Indian civil aviation has a comprehensive analysis on the turbulence this segment of the industry is currently facing and the prospects for the future. The other problem that is plaguing not only the Indian but the global airline industry is the problem of emissions from aircraft engines that have an adverse impact on the environment. Both the international regulatory agencies and the global aerospace industry are seized with this problem and are embarked in finding viable solutions in the long term perspective to address the issue of achieving reduced engine emissions through advanced technologies in the design of engines and adoption of new airframe technologies for better efficiency through lowering of drag and enhancing flying time. In this issue of the magazine, Zorawar Singh Jaiswal has a detailed analysis of the problem, the direction the scientific community is moving in to find solutions and prospects for the future.
All this and more in this issue of SP’s Aviation. Welcome aboard and wish you many happy landings!