DRDO to invest Rs 1,000 crore in 'aviation hub' HyderabadState-owned Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) will be spending around Rs 1,000 crore on development activities in and around Hyderabad over the next five years.
"About Rs 650 crore will be invested for augmenting the missile manufacturing programme, while Rs 350 crore will go into developing a hypersonic wind tunnel for testing scram jet engine, which will be six times faster than sound velocity," scientific adviser to the defence ministry and DRDO director-general VK Saraswat, told mediaperons here on Wednesday.
The remaining amount will be infused into three sanctioned programmes by DRDO, he said.
The missile manufacturing capacity expansion programme has been jointly taken up with another defence establishment Bharat Dynamics Limited.
"Scram jet engine was tested for 20 seconds duration and a flight test is expected sometime next year," he said.
Replying to a query on the Regional Transport Aircraft (RTA-70) programme, Saraswat said a project report was in the making and was expected to be completed by 2011. The RTA-70, a civil aviation programme, is aimed at building planes for carrying 70-100 passengeRson short-haul flights.
"Even in the most developed nations, it will take seven to 11 years to roll out such aircraft. We should be able to do something similar, if not better," he said, while declining to comment further.
On a proposal to start an aviation university at the Begumpet airport here, he said talks were on with various foreign universities for the same.
The Aeronautical Society of India (AeSI) is organising Aviation Conclave 2010 in Hyderabad from November 18. The three-day event will bring together aviation industry, airports, airlines, manufacturers and policy drivers for the first time to discuss the key issues collectively.
It is also aimed at enabling the country in general and Hyderabad in particular to be the 'Aviation Hub' for providing single-window solutions in the MRO (maintenance, repair, and operations) sector as well as ancillary segments.
Saraswat, also the chairman of AeSI, said education and aeronautics were key to growth in the aviation sector. "Hyderabad is going to be an aviation hub in the days to come. And, all these efforts (conclave 2010) are towards that direction," he said. Source: BS 18/11/10