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M&M aims for the skies

Mahindra & Mahindra to design and develop aircraft in association with NAL and Council of Scientific and Industrial Research.


March 1, 2007:

M&M is looking at aviation tech. The Indian automobile major has inked a deal for design and development of a new general aviation aircraft.

Going by the norm of giving a thrust to public-private partnership, the Mahindras’ deal is between National Aerospace Laboratories and Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, said a report.

It may be recalled that Mahindra and Mahindra had acquired Plexion Technologies in 2005. Plexion is today part of the Mahindra Engineering Services arm of the Systems and Technologies Sector, India’s foremost fully integrated ‘design to delivery’ automotive component supplier.

According to a report, the new aircraft being designed and developed would focus on performing a variety of missions, including 4 to 5 passenger transport, cargo operations and air taxi. A combination of state-of-the-art composite technology as well as advanced sheet metal fabrication techniques are proposed to be used, said sources.

The National Aerospace Laboratories and M&M will set up a combined technical team who would be jointly involved followed by design validation and testing using the extensive facilities of NAL, it said. The developmental phase is scheduled to be 36 months followed by certification for FAR-23 standards both within India and internationally.

The automobile major hopes to have a design contemporary in nature and with an advanced cockpit and comprehensive safety features. The features would include energy absorbing seats and lightening protection and also the integration of a number of indigenous components and technologies, said the report.

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