The National Aerospace Laboratories (NAL) proposed RTA 90-NG, primarily a 90 seater regional carrier under development, won’t make a good transport aircraft for the Indian Air Force due to limited Payload carrying capabilities, according to an internal assessment of the State-owned Public-sector company HAL.
RTA-90’s payload carrying capacity as a transport aircraft will be lower than that of the C-295M, a two-engine turbo propelled tactical transport aircraft that the Indian Air Force recently ordered; as a result, the IAF is unlikely to issue any orders to avoid inventory duplication in favour of more C-295M.
The RTA-90’s projected development has not yet begun. A new Medium Transport Aircraft being developed by HAL will be able to carry at least 21 to 23 tonnes of payload, which is more than twice as much as the C-295M.
After the Indo-Russian MTA programme was shelved due to significant disagreements in the choice of the aircraft’s power plant, HAL lobbied for the creation of a new MTA to replace AN-32 aircraft. Recently, Tata Advanced Systems decided not to include HAL in the contract for the C-295M, which will be locally constructed at its factory in India.
For the domestic development of the C-390, a medium-sized, twin-engine, jet-powered military transport aircraft with the same cargo carrying capability, HAL-Embraer had already had discussions. HAL intends to provide the IAF with either a domestic military transport aircraft that was designed and manufactured in India or a foreign aircraft that was manufactured in India.