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Global aviation giants to share stage with domestic industry at Aero India '11

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NEW DELHI (BNS): India will kick off its grand air show – Aero India 2011 – in Bangalore next week which will witness the participation of over 350 defence and aerospace companies from all over the globe.

The eighth edition of the biennial event will be held at the Air Force Station Yelahanka, Bengaluru from February 9 to 13.

The domestic and international aviation industry heavyweights participating in the show will display a broad range of latest military technology and equipment including warplanes, gunships, unmanned aerial vehicles, commercial jets, radars and many more.

While the list of participating countries will increase from 25 in 2009 to 29 this time, the share of domestic defence industry is also expected to see a rise. According to officials, participation of civilian aviation sector would be higher than the defence sector.

Over 90 domestic and international aircraft are set to take part in the show.

Global aerospace giants including Boeing, Northrop Grumman, EADS, SAAB, Dassault Aviation and Finmeccanica will share the platform with India's DRDO, HAL and ISRO along with many other industrial units working in the defence and aerospace sector.

As India's voracious appetite for modern military equipment grows with the country awarding several major defence contracts in the recent past and planning to ink many more deals in the coming months, Aero India 2011 will certainly offer a lucrative platform for the leading defence firms to not only showcase their products but also to woo their customer in a big way.

The big ticket aviation deals that are awaiting the nod of the Indian Government are the Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft deal for worth $10.4 billion, the $1.4 billion contract for 22 attack helicopters, $4.1 billion 10 C-17 Globemaster deal with Boeing and six air-to-air refueller aircraft worth around $1.3 billion.

The presence of domestic defence establishments, which are making rapid strides in making India self-reliant, will also be equally important during the exhibition.

India will showcase its home-grown Light Combat Aircraft Tejas (for Navy) during the show. Besides, DRDO will display its Aerostat radar which has been developed for the Indian Air Force to boost its surveillance capabilities.

Those making spectacular flying display will be the US's F-16 fighters and Eurofighter Typhoons. India's Light Combat Helicopter is also set to fly during the grand event. Another major attraction would be the Austrian 'Red Bull' aerobatic display team which will perform along with India's Suryakiran Aerobatic Team (SKAT) and the Sarang helicopter display team.

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