TYPE: Attack helicopter.

PROGRAMME: Derivative of Dhruv; displayed in model form at Paris Air Show, June 2001 as LAH (light attack helicopter) proposal, but was restyled LCH, signifying light combat. Original slimmed-down 'gunship' fuselage now discarded and basic Dhruv airframc retained except for forward fuselage modified to tandem crew seating. Officially launched 5 February 2003 and replaces earlier LOH programme, which now to be met by foreign design. LCH scheduled to fly in 2005; intended to augment, and eventually replace Indian Air Force Mi-35 fleet.

DESIGN FEATURES: Generally as for Dhruv except for modified nose section with tandern crew seating. Four-blade hingeless main rotor with swept blade tips. Intended for anti-tank, close air support, air-to-air combat and scout roles.

STRUCTURE: Extensive use of composites to reduce radar signature.

LANDING GEAR: Non-retractable and crashworthy tricycle type.

POWER PLANT: Two 895kW Turbomeca/HAL TM333-2C2 Ardiden 1H turboshafts (Indian name Shakii) with FADEC, derated to 798kW.

ACCOMMODATION: Crew of two in tandem; ergonomic cockpit.

SYSTEMS: Four-axis autostabilisation system; anti-resonance isolation system (ARIS).

AVIONICS: Instrumentation: Dual MFDs in each cockpit.
Mission: FLIR, TV and laser range-finder/designator; helmet-mounted sights.
Self-defence: Radar and laser warning receivers; MAWS; chaff/flare dispenser.

ARMAMENT: Undernose 20mm cannon. Stub-wing hardpoinls for ASMs, AAMs or rocket launchers.

Jane's All the World's Aircraft, 2004-2005

Technical data for HAL LCH

Main rotor diameter: 13.20m, length overall, rotors turning: 15.86m, fuselage length: 13.94m, height to top of rotor head: 5.27m, stub-wing span: 4.43m, max. take-off weight: 5,500kg, empty weight: 3,243kg, never-exceed speed: 330km/h, max cruising speed: 280km/h, service ceiling: 6,500m, range with standard fuel: 700km