Hindustan Aeronautics Limited

Hindustan Aeronautics Limited
Native name
Hindi: हिंदुस्तान एरोनॉटिक्स लिमिटेड
State-owned enterprise
Industry Aerospace and Defence
Founded 1940
(As Hindustan Aircraft)
(Renamed Hindustan Aeronautics)
Headquarters Bangalore, Karnataka, India
Key people
T Suvarna Raju (Chairman and CEO)
Products Transport aircraft
Fighter aircraft
Revenue 177.532614 billion (US$2.6 billion)[1] (2014)
26.925169 billion (US$400 million)[1] (2014)
Total assets 638.984194 billion (US$9.5 billion)[1] (2014)
Total equity 150.146363 billion (US$2.2 billion)[1] (2014)
Number of employees
32108[1] (March, 2014)
Website www.hal-india.com

Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (Hindi: हिंदुस्तान एरोनॉटिक्स लिमिटेड; IAST: Hindustān eronawṭiks limiṭeḍ) (HAL; हि ए लि) is an Indian state-owned aerospace and defence company based in Bangalore, Karnataka. It is governed under the management of the Indian Ministry of Defence.

The government-owned corporation is primarily involved in the operations of the aerospace industry. These include manufacturing and assembly of aircraft, navigation and related communication equipment and airports operation.

HAL built the first military aircraft in South Asia. It is currently involved in the design, fabrication and assembly of aircraft, jet engines, helicopters and their spare parts. It has several facilities spread across India. The locations where the manufacturing plants are operated by HAL include Nasik, Korwa, Kanpur, Koraput, Lucknow, Bangalore and Hyderabad. The German engineer Kurt Tank designed the HF-24 Marut fighter-bomber, the first fighter aircraft made in India.

Hindustan Aeronautics has a long history of collaboration with several other international and domestic aerospace agencies such as Airbus, Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Sukhoi Aviation Corporation, Elbit Systems, Israel Aircraft Industries, RSK MiG, BAE Systems, Rolls-Royce plc, Dassault Aviation, MBDA, EADS, Tupolev, Ilyushin Design Bureau, Dornier Flugzeugwerke, the Indian Aeronautical Development Agency and the Indian Space Research Organisation.


Production line of the HAL Dhruv at Bangalore

HAL was established as Hindustan Aircraft in Bangalore in 1940 on 23 Dec 1940. Hindustan Aircraft Company was duly incorporated under the Mysore Companies Act as a private Ltd Company. Walchand–Tulsidas-Khatau Ltd was the Managing agency.It first directors were: Mr. Walchand Hirachand,Chairman,Mr.Tulsidas Khilachand, Mr.Dharmsey Mularaj Khatau,Mr.A.N.Raghavachar(Mysore State Representative),Mr.Venkatanaranappa(Mysore State Representative).Company’s office was opened at a bungalow called "Eventide" on Domlur Road.The initiative was actively encouraged by the Kingdom of Mysore, especially by its Young Maharaja, H.H.Jayachamarajendra Wadiyar and the Diwan, Sir Mirza Ismail.Walchand had fist approached share holders of his own company - The Scindia Steam Navigation Company Ltd for diversifying but was refused. Then he wrote to the Rulers of Baroda, Gwalior and Bhavanagar without success. Only Maharaja of Mysore responded favorably by agreeing to invest 25 lakhs and gave initial 700 acres of land free.

The organisation and equipment for the factory at Bangalore was set up by William D. Pawley of the Intercontinental Aircraft Corporation of New York, who had already established Central Aircraft Manufacturing Company (CAMCO) in partnership with Chinese Nationalist government in China. Pawley managed to obtain a large number of machine-tools and equipment from the United States.

The Indian Government bought a one-third stake in the company and by April 1941 by investing 25 lakhs as it believed this to be a strategic imperative. The decision by the government was primarily motivated to boost British military hardware supplies in Asia to counter the increasing threat posed by Imperial Japan during Second World War. The Kingdom of Mysore supplied two directors, Air Marshal John Higgins was resident director. The first aircraft built was a Harlow PC-5[2] On 2 April 1942, the government announced that the company had been nationalised when it had bought out the stakes of Seth Walchand Hirachand and other promoters so that it could act freely. The Mysore Kingdom refused to sell its stake in the company but yielded the management control over to the Indian Government.

In 1943 the Bangalore factory was handed over to the United States Army Air Forces but still using Hindustan Aircraft management. The factory expanded rapidly and became the centre for major overhaul and repair of American aircraft and was known as the 84th Air Depot. The first aircraft to be overhauled was a Consolidated PBY Catalina followed by every type of aircraft operated in India and Burma. When returned to Indian control two years later the factory had become one of the largest overhaul and repair organisations in the East. In the post war reorganisation the company built railway carriages as an interim activity.

IJT prototype in its hangar

After India gained independence in 1947, the management of the company was passed over to the Government of India.

Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) was formed on 1 October 1964 when Hindustan Aircraft Limited joined the consortium formed in June by the IAF Aircraft Manufacturing Depot, Kanpur (at the time manufacturing HS748 under licence) and the group recently set up to manufacture MiG-21 under licence (with its new factories planned in Koraput, Nasik and Hyderabad).[3] Though HAL was not used actively for developing newer models of fighter jets, except for the HF-24 Marut, the company has played a crucial role in modernisation of the Indian Air Force. In 1957 company started manufacturing Bristol Siddeley Orpheus jet engines under licence at new factory located in Bangalore.

During the 1980s, HAL's operations saw a rapid increase which resulted in the development of new indigenous aircraft such as the HAL Tejas and HAL Dhruv. HAL also developed an advanced version of the Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-21, known as MiG-21 Bison, which increased its life-span by more than 20 years. HAL has also obtained several multimillion-dollar contracts from leading international aerospace firms such as Airbus, Boeing and Honeywell to manufacture aircraft spare parts and engines.

By 2012, HAL was reportedly been bogged down in the details of production and has been slipping on its schedules.[4] On 1 April 2015, HAL reconstituted its Board with Mr. TS Raju as CMD, Mr. S Subrahmanyan as Director (Operations), Mr. VM Chamola as Director (HR), CA Ramana Rao as Director (Finance) and Mr. D K Venkatesh as Director (Engineering & R&D). There are two Govt. nominees in the Board and six independent Directors.


One of the largest aerospace companies in Asia, HAL has annual turnover of over US$2 billion. More than 40% of HAL's revenues come from international deals to manufacture aircraft engines, spare parts, and other aircraft materials. A partial list of major operations undertaken by HAL includes the following:

International agreements

HAL Dhruv helicopters of the Ecuadorian Air Force in 2009 Aero India
An IAF BAe Hawk being licence-produced at the HAL Hawk production facility in Bangalore

Domestic agreements

In-house developed products

Agricultural aircraft

Fighter aircraft

HAL Tejas


HAL Dhruv of the Indian Army


Trainer aircraft

Closeup of a HAL Kiran aircraft

Observation and reconnaissance aircraft

Transport and passenger aircraft

Saras, developed by HAL Lucknow and National Aerospace Laboratories

Utility aircraft


Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

Notable People

Licensed production

HAL licensed-built Su-30 MKI


See also


  1. 1 2 3 4 5 http://hal-india.com/Common/Uploads/Finance/Annual-Report-2013-14-English.pdf
  2. "Hindustan Aircraft Ltd" Flight 27 August 1954 p. 296.
  3. HAL Preserved Flight International 1964
  4. "HAL slipping up on deliveries as it handles too many projects." The Hindu Business Line, March 3, 2012.
  5. 21/10/2010+7°C (2009-01-22). "In Brief - Russia's next-generation warplane scheduled for maiden flight in 2009 | NEWS | The Moscow News". Mnweekly.ru. Retrieved 2010-10-21.
  6. Dec 5, 2007 (2007-12-05). "Asia Times Online :: South Asia news - India takes aim at next level of defense". Atimes.com. Retrieved 2010-10-21.
  7. Boeing to export up to $1 billion in work to India |TheNewsTribune.com |Tacoma, WA
  8. "Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd and Ilyushin start work on multi-role transport aircraft". domain-b.com. 2008-04-04. Retrieved 2010-10-21.
  9. "India Signs Contract For $964M MiG-29 Upgrade". Aviation Week. 2008-03-10. Retrieved 2010-10-21.
  10. "HAL to make 1,000 Honeywell engines". The Financial Express. 2008-05-30. Retrieved 2010-10-21.
  11. "HAL to make new generation Dornier aircraft". Archived from the original on 2009-01-29.
  12. "National : HAL bags $150-million Airbus order". The Hindu. 2008-03-19. Retrieved 2010-10-21.
  13. "Israel News : Israel outsources $100-mn composites for UAVs to India". Israelenews.com. Retrieved 2010-10-21.
  14. "Honeywell opens $65m R&D facility in Bangalore". Pacetoday.com.au. 2009-05-11. Retrieved 2010-10-21.
  15. "Hindustan Aeronautics gets $50.7 mln helicopter contract from Ecuador air force". Forbes.com. 2008-06-26. Archived from the original on 2011-06-04. Retrieved 2010-10-21.
  16. 7 Sep, 2008, 09.40AM IST,PTI (2008-09-07). "HAL to have maintenance base in Ecuador - The Economic Times". Economictimes.indiatimes.com. Retrieved 2010-10-21.
  17. "TajaNews". TajaNews. Retrieved 2010-10-21.
  18. "HAL secures order for ambulance version of ALH Dhruv from Peru". domain-b.com. 2008-06-24. Retrieved 2010-10-21.
  19. "HAL bags $20 million contract for supply of three Dhruv helicopters to Turkey". domain-b.com. 2008-08-12. Retrieved 2010-10-21.
  20. 10 Jun, 2009, 08.48PM IST,PTI (2009-06-10). "HAL bags $10 mn order for Chetak, Cheetah from Namibia". Economictimes.indiatimes.com. Retrieved 2010-10-21.
  21. PTI, Mar 1, 2009, 04.30pm IST (2009-03-01). "India signs pact for supply of Dhruv helicopters to Mauritius". The Times of India. Retrieved 2010-10-21.
  22. PTI, Apr 2, 2008, 04.41am IST (2008-04-02). "'India, Israel developing unmanned helicopter' -Gulf-World-The Times of India". The Times of India. Retrieved 2010-10-21.
  23. "India to construct new aerospace hub". Itexaminer.com. 2008-10-16. Retrieved 2010-10-21.
  24. "HAL to upgrade Indian Jaguar fleet". Flightglobal.com. Retrieved 2010-10-21.
  25. PTI, Aug 16, 2007, 04.11pm IST (2007-08-16). "Hindustan Aeronautics to set up pilot training school-India Business-Business-The Times of India". The Times of India. Retrieved 2010-10-21.
  26. AFP: India awards Russia billion dollar MiG-29 upgrade
  27. By ECONOMICTIMES.COM (2015-12-14). "Boost for 'Make in India': HAL's 25 kN aero engine completes inaugural run; can be used for trainer aircraft - The Economic Times". Economictimes.indiatimes.com. Retrieved 2016-07-24.
  28. Our Bureau. "A long way to go for HAL's new aircraft engine". The Hindu Business Line.
  29. "Parrikar: 68 basic trainer aircraft to come from HAL, 38 from Pilatus". The Indian Express. 1 March 2015.
  30. "HAL-built HTT-40's first flight successful". www.oneindia.com. Retrieved 2016-06-01.

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