WALTER VAN TILBORG COLLECTION
No. 9541. Hindustan Aeronautics Dhruv (Pole Star) (IN901 c/n PT4) Indian Navy
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Hindustan Aeronautics Dhruv

12/31/2009. HAL signed an agreement with MBB of Germany in July 1984 to support design, development and production of Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH). Design started in November 1984 and ground test vehicle runs began April 1991, and five flying prototypes were produced.

There were two basic prototypes, c/n PT1 s/n Z3182, first flown August 20, 1992, and c/n PT2 s/n Z3183, first flown April 18, 1993, were followed by an air force/army prototype, c/n PT3 s/n Z3268, first flown May 28, 1994, and a navy prototype, c/n PT4 s/n IN901 (shown here as N901) first flown December 23, 1995, while the fifth was a civil prototype, c/n PTC-2 registered VT-XLH, due to an engine embargo this was not flown until March 6, 2002.

The first three prototypes were powered by two 1,000 shp Turboméca
TM333-2B turboshaft engines, while the other two were powered by two 1,338 shp LHTEC (Light Helicopter Turbine Engine Company) CTS800 turboshaft engines. The former are being installedd in production types, while the 1,200 shp Turbomeca Ardiden 1H (Indian name Shakti) is in an advanced development stage, this will power future versions. The first production aircraft was delivered in March 2002.

Created December 31, 2009