India is self-reliant in almost every field. This includes the vital sector- aerospace. The country has an advanced aerospace industry that consists of indigenous, foreign and Joint Venture (JV) companies in India.
Together, they help India meet its vital defence needs while providing the much-needed boost to exports. Aeronautical companies in India play a silent yet key role in civil aviation industry of this country.
Before we inform you about the top 10 Aerospace Companies in India, it is vital to know what the industry is all about. Aerospace can broadly be defined as technology and industry that deals with various elements of aviation and space flight.
List Of Top 10 Aerospace Companies in India
Antrix Corporation Ltd is owned by the Department of Space, Government of India. It serves as the marketing and commercial arm of the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO).
It played a key role in ISRO setting the world record of launching 104 satellites in one go, using a single rocket in February 2017.
This aviation company had marketed ISRO’s satellite launch capabilities worldwide and bagged foreign clients to use the Indian service.
It provides space products and services to customers worldwide.
It owns state-of-the-art facilities that enable Antrix to provide various types of solutions and products such as hardware and software used for complex aerospace applications, simple subsystems and complex spacecraft for varied applications.
Its aerospace products and services cover satellite communications, Earth observation and scientific missions, remote sensing data service, transponder lease.
It is responsible for ISRO to bag prestigious orders from foreign countries for launching satellites using Indian PSLV and GSLV rockets.
Antrix also provides mission support services; and a host of consultancy and training services.
State-owned Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd is the pioneer of aerospace engineering companies in India.
It was established in December 1940 in Bangalore as a company that would meet the defence needs of this country, which was under British occupation at the time. HAL became a fully owned company of the Indian government in 1963.
Currently, HAL has several projects. These include production of Sukhoi SU-30 MKI, Tejas Light Combat Aircraft, Dornier DO-228 transport planes, Dhruv Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH) as well as Chetak, Cheetal and Cheetah helicopters.
The company undertakes the maintenance of various warplanes and civilian aircraft.HAL manufactures various structures required by ISRO for its unmanned spaceships and satellites.
The company is developing an integrated facility for cryogenic and semi-cryogenic engines for Indian rockets and missiles.
Also in the aerospace segment, HAL manufactures airframes and various aircraft components in joint ventures with various foreign and local partners.
This company is at the forefront of India’s aerospace industry and is well reputed worldwide for its reliable products and services.
Dassault-Reliance Aerospace was established in 2017. It is a Joint Venture (JC) between Dassault Aviation of France that holds a 49% stake and India’s Reliance Infrastructure Ltd which has the majority, 51% share.
The company has an aircraft and aircraft component manufacturing facility located in Mihan Special Economic Zone near Nagpur.
In September 2018, Dassault-Reliance Aerospace witnessed some turbulence after former French President, Francois Hollande reportedly said, his country was not given the option of selecting an Indian partner for the Rs.580billon deal for signed between the two countries for buying Rafale multirole combat aircraft for the Indian Air Force.
This new entrant in aerospace manufacturing companies in India has been tasked with assembling Rafale and Falcon aircraft at the Dhirubhai Ambani Technology Park in Mihan.
Further, DRAL will also manufacture various components for Legacy Falcon 2000 Series civilian jets to become part of the global supply chain. In future stages, DRAL will manufacture and assemble various fighter aircraft and civilian airliners of Dassault at the Mihan facility.
DRAL has set a record of sorts in India. It has attracted over Euro 100 million as Foreign Direct Investment from Dassault Aviation- the largest such in India’s aerospace sector.
The company expects to train thousands of skilled workers and will involve over 200 Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in its ventures.
Tata Advanced Systems Limited (TASL), a wholly owned subsidiary of Tata Sons, the country’s foremost industrial group. It is the strategic aerospace and defence arm of the company.
TASL has emerged as a key player in the defence and one of the top aerospace companies in India. The company has Joint Ventures with various prestigious foreign aerospace companies including Boeing and other companies.
The core business of Tata Advanced Systems Ltd is missile systems and sub-systems, Radar Systems and sub-systems, aerospace and aerostructures, unmanned aerial systems, Optronics and homeland security solutions as well as command and control systems.
The company is manufacturing Sikorsky S 92 helicopter cabin assembly including the wire harness installation, Lockheed Martin C 130 J empennage and centre wing box assembly, detailed part manufacturing under the Tata Sikorsky JV with capabilities in machining, sheet metal forming, tube bending, special processes and quality assurance, among others.
In the Unmanned Aerial Systems category, Tata Advanced Systems Ltd is involved in design and development of Mini and Micro UAV systems complemented by the indigenous design of major subsystems like autopilot, ground control station, Gimbal based payloads and others.
This has enabled the company to provide state-of-the-art solutions for UAVs for the Indian Defense Forces and law enforcement agencies.
Indo Russian Aviation Ltd is a JV between various Russian aircraft manufacturers, Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd and private sector ICICI Bank. HAL holds 48% stake in this company while ICICI Bank holds 5% shares.
Russian Aircraft Corporation and warplane manufacturer Mikoyan-Gurevich (MiG) hold 31% shares followed by Ryazan SIP holding 10% and Aviazapchast Russia with 6% stake.
The company makes MiG aircraft in India for use by the Indian and Russian air forces as well as exports, Kamov helicopters used by the Indian Navy, assembly of various Sukhoi warplanes, Mil MI helicopters and other fixed wing and rotor aircraft.
Additionally, Indo Russian Aviation Ltd is engaged in overhaul and repair of aircraft, engines, aggregates and systems, product support for maintenance and exploitation of aircraft, manufacture and assembly of aircraft engines and aggregates in India and Russia and supply of ground and role support equipment for armed forces of the two countries.
Mahindra Aerospace is part of the Indian industrial giant, Mahindra Group. It recently entered an agreement with Aeronautics Ltd of Israel to manufacture world-class military drones for the Indian Armed Forces.
The company ventured into aerospace industry in 2008 and acquired Gipps Aero and Aerostaff, Australia in 2010. Mahindra Aerospace has manufacturing facilities in Australia and India.
The company profile states, Mahindra Aerospace represents the Mahindra Group’s interests in utility aircraft and aero-structures.
The aircraft business of Mahindra Aerospace is based in Australia. It produces Airvan 8 utility aircraft that is certified in 43 countries.
More than 250 Airvans operate worldwide in tourism, freight, law enforcement and other roles.
In 2017 Mahindra Aerospace launched its new product, the Airvan 10 turboprop that has been certified in seven countries.
The aero-structures business, based in India, produces aerospace components using state-of-the-art equipment and systems.
The facility is AS9100D and NADCAP certified and delivers over 100,000 parts every month to leading Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) and aerospace companies in Europe, North America and Australia.
Mahindra Aerospace has sourcing and partnering deals with various major companies including Premium Aerotec and GE Aviation, among others.
BrahMos Aerospace Pvt. Ltd is a JV between India’s Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO) and Russian military consortium, NPO Mashinonstroyenia.
The company was established in 1998 with a capital of US$250 million, with the Indian government contributing 50.5 % of the share. BrahMos derives its name from two rivers, one is the most important river in India Brahmaputra of India and Moskva (Moscow) of Russia.
This company has caused uneasiness among India’s hostile neighbours for developing the supersonic cruise missile- BrahMos. It travels at a speed of between Mach2.8 Mach3.0 and is the fastest cruise missile in the world.
BrahMos Aerospace is working on an upgraded version of this missile that can cover longer distances at speeds in excess of Mach5.0 to Mach7.0.
Currently, no country has an anti-missile defence system capable of intercepting an incoming BrahMos missile.
Additionally, BrahMos Aerospace is also working on various other projects in India such as the development of various propulsion systems for India’s space program and military purposes.
It is one of the most precious Aerospace Companies in India and the envy of many countries worldwide.
Adani Defence and Aerospace were launched under the aegis of the Make in India initiative. This company marks the Adani Group's first venture into defence and aerospace manufacturing sector.
The company will play a key role in developing world-class defence and aerospace solutions for India and the country’s export market and is among the first private sector players to enter the field.
Adani Defence and Aerospace are developing platforms and technologies that are critical for defending India against various external threats.
These include the development of capabilities to bolster India’s nuclear triad and provide better deterrence against foreign aggression.
Adani Defense & Aerospace is collaborating with major and reputed companies in the defence and civilian aerospace segments for transfer of technology and skills.
The company is collaborating with MSMEs to develop a sustainable defence ecosystem for India by focusing on capabilities such as design, system integration, maintenance and upgrades in various spheres of aerospace technology.
It is working with various foreign partners in a bid to manufacture or assemble the latest warplanes and aircraft engines in India.
Adani Defense & Aerospace is developing capabilities in avionics and systems, aerostructures and components, aerospace composites, radar and electronic warfare systems.
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Another top-rated aerospace company in India is Bharat Electronics Ltd.
Bharat Electronics Ltd is owned by the Indian government. It was established in 1954 as a company that would meet the nation’s needs for radios and basic communications equipment in collaboration with CSF of France (now known as Thales).
Since BEL has successfully entered into avionics and aerospace segments and is a key supplier of various aerospace products and services to the Indian Armed Forces.
BEL ranks among Navratna companies of the Indian government. In the avionics and aerospace segment, the company is manufacturing state-of-the-art radars to detect civilian and hostile military aircraft as well as sophisticated ones for tracking rockets launched by ISRO.
The company also makes guidance systems for Indian missiles, and various other components deployed onboard Indian warplanes.
Also in the avionics and aerospace segment, BEL manufactures ground command and control stations for various kinds of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) deployed by the Indian Armed Forces for surveillance and attack.
The company is manufacturing cockpit modules and flight control systems for India’s indigenous stealth Light Combat Aircraft- Tejas.
Hindalco-Almex Aerospace Ltd (HAAL) is a JV between India’s business giant, Aditya Birla Group and Almex USA Inc.
HAAL manufactures high-strength aluminium alloys for that are needed by India’s aerospace industry.
The company’s production unit located in Shendra near Aurangabad in Maharashtra is the first and only facility in India that manufactures extremely high grade and high- performance aluminium alloys for use in aircraft structures, airframes, missiles, rockets and various other aerospace-related applications.
According to HAAL, the company has successfully cast billets in various 2xxx, 6xxx and 7xxxx series alloys for aerospace applications that meet and exceed international standards. HAAL intends to bolster its presence in the aerospace industry of India.
Its future plans include the manufacture of various airframes and other components for civilian and fighter aircraft.
The company is testing aluminium alloys of various grades that are used in the aeronautics and aerospace industries. It has an in-house research and development centre.
HAAL plans to provide vital materials needed for indigenization of India’s aerospace sector, including space exploration.
Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) deserves special mention among Aerospace Companies in India.
ISRO’s research and development programs in avionics and aerospace paved way for the country to become self-reliant in fields of defence, including complex missile technology.
ISRO continues to lead India’s advances in the complex aerospace sector.
The organization has assisted the Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO), Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) and other enterprises with much-needed aerospace technology at a time when procuring it from foreign countries were impossible.
ISRO paved way for the development of cryogenic engines and solid-fueled rockets in India. Its space exploration programs presented numerous opportunities for India to advance in the field of aerospace and space exploration.
ISRO also successfully tested its own version of a scramjet, the latest in aerospace technology, in 2016.
The organization’s contributions to India’s aerospace industry are unmatched.
To Sum Up
The Indian government is encouraging private sector enterprises to foray into the aerospace industry. Hence, we will shortly see several MSMEs as well as business giants entering the fray.
This augurs well for India since aerospace companies in India remain limited for a nation and economy of this size.
Most new aerospace companies in India are likely to be JVs with foreign partners. However, this will lead to the development of indigenous aerospace technologies too.