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These Are The Coolest Planes That Were Shown Off At Aero India This Year

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Aero India is a biennial event happening in India since 1996, and the program has slowly gained a lot of momentum. These trade shows are a perfect platform for companies to show-off their offerings, and in a rapidly developing market like India, the possibilities are limitless.

While India has shared deeper roots with the then-USSR in terms of defence and aviation acquisitions, the tides are slowly turning. India is among the top defence equipment importers in the world, and with nascent domestic aviation manufacturing, targeting India as a potential customer is natural.

For the aviation geeks out there, the show is a mesmerising experience. Not only does it offer newer civilian aircraft, but also demonstrates the capability of India's armed forces. This year, more than fifty aircrafts were on static display at Aero India. Aerobatic performances were held by numerous aircrafts, and we've listed down our favourites.

1. Dassault Rafale

The Coolest Planes That Were Shown Off At Aero India This Year© MensXP / Shivam Vahia

The Rafale has become a household name in India now, but keeping aside the political controversies, it is among the most capable multirole fighter planes out there. It can perform air superiority, reconnaissance, ground support, as well as nuclear deterrence. The French Air Force primarily operates it, and Indian Air Force has placed an order of 36 aircraft.

The Coolest Planes That Were Shown Off At Aero India This Year© MensXP / Shivam Vahia

The French Air Force (regionally called Armée de l'air) brought a couple of their Rafale's at Aero India, and they undoubtedly attracted the most people. The delta wing design provides higher maneuverability and the jet can reach a maximum speed of Mach 1.8 (1,900 km/h). It can also go as slow as 213km/h and take off as well as land on aircraft carriers. It is a symbol of French engineering and carries forward the legacy of Dassault's Mirage 2000 jets.

2. Sukhoi 30MKI

The Coolest Planes That Were Shown Off At Aero India This Year© MensXP / Shivam Vahia

It is a 4.5-generation air superiority aircraft developed by Russia and India has more than 250 of them in service. With state of the art avionics and thrust vectoring nozzles, it can perform a cobra manoeuvre in which it suddenly raises the nose momentarily to the vertical position and slightly beyond. This lets it reduce air speed instantly, providing an edge in air-to-air combat.

The Coolest Planes That Were Shown Off At Aero India This Year© MensXP / Shivam Vahia

The Indian variant can carry a BrahMos supersonic missile and employs a variety of weapons for ground-based offensive as well. It can also fly at double the speed of sound and pick up enemy at ranges in excess of 200kms.

3. LCA Tejas

The Coolest Planes That Were Shown Off At Aero India This Year© MensXP / Shivam Vahia

It is an indigenously developed aircraft and the first squadron was raised in July 2016. The complete structure is made of composite materials to reduce weight and increase performance. Just like the Rafale, it has a delta wing design for increased maneuverability. The air show depicted its exceedingly high rate of climb along with sharp turns to provide an edge in air-to-air combat.

It features a complete glass cockpit along with a heads-up display and fly by wire technology for simpler handling. Aero India 2019 dazzled when Tejas rose to the sky, thundering amidst the much hyped Rafale and staple warhorse Sukhoi.

4. C17 Globemaster III

The Coolest Planes That Were Shown Off At Aero India This Year© MensXP / Shivam Vahia

Transport aircrafts like the C17 were another spectacular sight. United States Air Force brought their giant from Pearl Harbour, along with the P-8I Poseidon. The plane is made by Boeing and features four engines that enable it to carry more than 77,000 kgs of cargo.

The Coolest Planes That Were Shown Off At Aero India This Year© MensXP / Shivam Vahia

The plane has multiple roles and can perform troop drop, strategic airlifting as well as relief operations. The Indian Air Force currently has 10 of these and they play a crucial role in maintaining logistics supply to the remote parts of the country.

5. Airbus A330neo

The Coolest Planes That Were Shown Off At Aero India This Year© MensXP / Shivam Vahia

The Airbus A320neo have become a common sight in India thanks to a huge operational fleet of IndiGo, GoAir, Vistara, and Air India. The A330 is a wide-body aircraft that can carry up to 400 people in a single class configuration. The "NEO" stands for New Engine Option and new Rolls Royce Trent 7000 engines are extremely efficient in terms of operating costs.

So far, only three have been built and the first scheduled flight of the A330 will be operated to Mumbai. The cockpit looks very similar to the A350 and the two share a lot of common design elements.

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