How this 17-year-old Company is Establishing India as a Global Aerospace Manufacturing Hub

Abhishek Nayar

12 Jun 2023

The aerospace sector is critical to any country's economic and technical progress. Tata Advanced Systems Limited (TASL) has become a major participant in India's aircraft production, military engineering, and defense technology. TASL has evolved as a prominent participant in the Indian aerospace and defense environment, strongly emphasizing cutting-edge technology, innovation, and cooperation. 


TASL, founded in 2007, has established itself as a pioneer in this competitive field as a wholly owned subsidiary of Tata Sons, the holding company for the illustrious Tata Group. TASL is a center of excellence for aerospace production, military engineering, and defense technologies. It comprises an extensive spectrum of capabilities, from sophisticated aircraft development and manufacturing to defense system design and integration. TASL's dedication to excellence has earned them a reputation as a provider of high-quality solutions to both domestic and international clients.

Core Competencies and Expertise at TASL

Aerospace and Defense

The defense and aerospace industries are TASL's core emphasis. The firm provides a broad spectrum of services, including aircraft structural design, development, and manufacture; systems integration; avionics; and mission systems. To address the intricate requirements of the defense sector, TASL has developed cutting-edge facilities and competencies. Its knowledge ranges from aircraft manufacturing to maintenance, repair, and overhaul (MRO) services.


TASL has diversified its portfolio beyond defense and aerospace to include the automotive industry. The firm provides automotive solutions such as vehicle electrification, powertrain systems, and advanced vehicle safety systems through the application of its engineering and production expertise. TASL collaborates with global OEMs (Original Equipment Manufacturers) to develop cutting-edge technologies that improve vehicle performance, efficiency, and safety.

Industrial and Energy

TASL's expertise encompasses everything from defense and automotive to the industrial and energy sectors. Advanced manufacturing solutions, industrial automation, and renewable energy systems are all accessible through the organization. TASL's engineering expertise and dedication to innovation enable it to deliver customized solutions that cater to the evolving needs of industrial clients. TASL is at the forefront of driving innovation and efficiency in automation technologies and sustainable energy solutions.

Projects and Collaborations of Note

TASL has participated in a number of high-profile projects and partnerships that have demonstrated its technical attributes and subject expertise. The business has collaborated with global aerospace behemoths such as Lockheed Martin, Boeing, and Airbus to produce aircraft components and systems. The partnership of TASL with these prominent firms has not only enhanced its reputation but has also aided the expansion of the Indian aerospace sector.

GE Aerospace

GE Aerospace and Tata Advanced Systems have renewed their manufacturing agreement, which calls for TASL to continue producing and supplying various commercial aviation engine components to GE's global engine production facilities. The multi-year, long-term contract is valued at over $1 billion, demonstrating GE and TASL's increasing cooperation in the aerospace sector. The engine parts will be manufactured in Hyderabad at the Tata Centre of Excellence for Aero Engines. In 2018, the Tata Centre of Excellence for Aero Engines was established in India to manufacture CFM International LEAP engine components. The LEAP engine has logged more than 23 million engine flight hours since entering service in 2016, continuing to improve fuel efficiency and asset utilization for today's newest commercial narrowbody aircraft.

Airbus A320neo

TASL's major project is manufacturing aerostructures for the Airbus A320neo airplane. TASL manufactures a variety of components, including cargo doors and bulk cargo doors, at a fresh manufacturing facility in Hyderabad, employing cutting-edge robotics and automation technology as part of the contract. Each shipset will include two cargo doors along with one bulk cargo door, which is then delivered to Airbus for final assembly. This collaboration has bolstered India's standing as a global aircraft production base. Airbus presently acquires $735 million in components and services from more than 100 Indian suppliers on an annual basis. Today, crucial technologies and systems are designed, manufactured, and maintained in India for every Airbus commercial aircraft and helicopter.

C-295 Military Transport Aircraft

The C295 is an outstanding aircraft used for tactical transport of up to 71 troops or 50 paratroopers and logistic missions to locations inaccessible to heavier aircraft. The aircraft can drop paratroops and cargo as well as provide casualty or medical evacuation. The aircraft is capable of carrying out distinctive missions such as disaster relief and maritime patrol. The C-295 military transport aircraft will be designed and manufactured in India through a partnership between Airbus Defence and Space and TATA Advanced Systems Limited (TASL). The $2.65 billion (Rs 21,935 crore) project would see Airbus deliver the first 16 aircraft in flyaway condition, while the consortium, which includes TASL and Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), will construct another 40 units at the Vadodara facility.

The consortium will manufacture 13,400 parts, 4,600 sub-assemblies, and seven major assemblies of the C-295 transport aircraft, whereas Airbus will provide engines, landing gear, avionics, and an electronic warfare (EW) suite. The TATA consortium will handle the integration of numerous systems and engines, as well as accompanying evaluations, final flight testing, and aircraft delivery. The 16 aircraft are scheduled to arrive between September 2023 and August 2025. The delivery of the Indian-made aircraft would begin in September 2026.

C-130J-30 Super Hercules

TLMAL emerged in 2010 as a joint venture between Tata Advanced Systems Limited (TASL) and Lockheed Martin Aeronautics in conjunction with the Indian Air Force's procurement of its first six C-130J-30 Super Hercules airlifters. The 150th empennage delivery celebration was held at TLMAL's Adibatla facility in Hyderabad, and was attended by Telangana's minister for industries and information technology, K. T. Rama Rao, as well as top officials from the state government and TLMAL. TLMAL empennage assemblies include the aircraft's horizontal and vertical stabilizers and the leading edge and tip assemblies. TLMAL empennages are installed on C-130Js, which are used to assist vital global search and rescue, peacekeeping, combat delivery, maritime patrol, special operations, aerial refueling, medevac, and humanitarian response missions.

TLMAL empennages are also featured in the LM-100J, the Super Hercules' commercial derivative. The C-130J Super Hercules is the proven standard in tactical airlift, offering an unrivaled combination of mobility and performance to complete any mission, anytime, anywhere. It is the current variant of the C-130 Hercules and the preferred airlifter for 26 operators in 22 nations. The Indian Air Force operates a fleet of 12 C-130J-30 air lifters, demonstrating the airlifter's versatility by landing on the world's highest landing strip — Daulat Beg Oldi in northern India — and relying on the C-130 for regional military, peacekeeping, medevac, humanitarian relief, and natural disaster support missions.

General Dynamics F-16 Fighting Falcon

Lockheed Martin has announced that it will manufacture all of the F-16 fighter jet's wings in India. The US defense firm announced a collaboration with Indian firm Tata Advanced Systems to manufacture the wings at a facility in Hyderabad, commencing in late 2020. The production of F-16 wings in India would boost TASL's capabilities to meet global aerospace requirements for fighter aircraft while also supporting 'Make in India.' The planned shift of F-16 wing manufacturing to India is not contingent on the Indian government selecting the F-16 for the Indian Air Force.

Awards and Recognition

The relentless pursuit of excellence at TASL has culminated in numerous awards and recognitions. The business has received recognition for its contributions to the defense, aerospace, and automotive industries. TASL has achieved Industrial Excellence in the Aerospace and Defence industry and has been recognized with awards such as the "Best International Transition" Award, the "American Helicopter Society", and the "Best Joint Venture" Award by India - Aerospace and Defence Awards. To demonstrate TASL's excellence to our customers, their outstanding Quality and Delivery performance has been recognized by customers with awards ranging from the Rolls Royce Trusted to Deliver Excellence award to Lockheed Martin RMS Elite, GE Supplier of the Year, and Boeing Supplier Appreciation Award. TASL was additionally accredited with "Boeing Gold Supplier" status. These awards demonstrate TASL's dedication to providing world-class products, services, and solutions. TASL's recognition strengthens its position as a reliable partner in the sectors it serves.

Prospects for the Future and Growth Opportunities

In the years ahead, TASL will be well-positioned to capitalize on growth prospects in the defense, aerospace, automotive, and industrial sectors. TASL strives to benefit from government initiatives and strategic partnerships as India emphasizes indigenous production and self-reliance in defense. Strong engineering capabilities, manufacturing expertise, and a commitment to innovation will be major drivers of the business's future growth. TASL also intends to broaden its global reach by exploring diverse markets and forming partnerships with international players. TASL is poised to play an instrumental role in influencing the future of the sectors within which it operates by leveraging its fundamental competencies while remaining at the forefront of technological breakthroughs.


Tata Advanced Systems Limited (TASL) has emerged as a key participant in the aerospace and defense industries, providing a diverse range of innovative solutions in a variety of industries. TASL has established itself as a valued partner for global customers through its steadfast commitment to quality, technological excellence, and customer satisfaction. TASL is well-positioned for future development and success, strongly emphasizing innovation, CSR initiatives, and partnerships.

With Inputs from The Hindu Business LineAirforce TechnologyDeccan ChronicleThe StatesmanCNBCTataTata Advanced Systems

Read next

Cyclone Biparjoy Causes Flight Disruptions at Mumbai Airport

Radhika Bansal

11 Jun 2023

Cyclone Biparjoy disrupted flight operations in Mumbai. Several flights were affected last evening due to bad weather conditions around the city. Heavy rain and gusty winds hit the city as the cyclone Biparjoy intensified into an extremely severe cyclonic storm and advanced ahead towards Gujarat. Several flights were either cancelled, delayed or diverted due to the bad weather conditions. Hundreds of anxious passengers expressed their displeasure about the situation on social media. Some passengers took to Twitter to complain about the inconvenience.

In a statement, Air India said that some of its flights running from Mumbai will be delayed due to bad weather and the temporary closure of the runway. "Inclement weather conditions and the temporary closure of Runway 09/27 at the Mumbai airport, in addition to other consequential factors beyond our control have resulted in delays and cancellation of some of our flights. We regret the inconvenience caused to our guests, as we make all effort to minimise the disruptions” Air India tweeted.

India's biggest airline IndiGo also announced some changes in its scheduled flights. "The agony of flight delays is equally troublesome for us. It is only under extremely uncontrollable situations we're compelled to make such changes in the schedule. We look forward to your kind understanding," Indigo tweeted responding to a passenger.

IMD's Prediction on the Cyclone

IMD has predicted that cyclone Biparjoy is likely to intensify into an extremely severe cyclonic storm and is expected to hit Gujarat and Pakistan on June 14 with a windspeed of 135 kmph. "Cyclone Alert for Saurashtra & Kutch Coast: Orange Message. ESCS BIPARJOY at 0530IST of today over Aeast central & adjoining NE Arabian Sea near lat 19.2N & long 67.7E, about 380km SSW of Devbhumi Dwarka. To cross near Jakhau Port, Gujarat by noon of June 15," the Indian Meteorological Department tweeted early Monday morning.

The IMD has further predicted that there will be light to moderate rainfall in most places with heavy to very heavy rainfall at isolated places very likely over Kutch, Devbhumi Dwarka, Porbandar, Jamnagar, Rajkot, Junagarh and Morbi districts of Saurashtra and Kutch on Wednesday. The weather office has also issued a 'thunderstorm' alert for some districts in coastal Maharashtra.

The Pakistan government has also advised authorities in Sindh and Balochistan to remain alert. Rain accompanied by thunder is expected on the coasts of Sindh and Makran from the night of June 13, said Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD).

Read next

Star Alliance's CEO Considers India As a Critical Aviation Market for Growth With All Kinds of Opportunities

Radhika Bansal

12 Jun 2023

India is a critical aviation market for growth with all kinds of opportunities and Air India is on a strong mission to overhaul its business, according to airlines' grouping Star Alliance's CEO Theo Panagiotoulias. Star Alliance, which has been in existence for more than 25 years, is a global grouping of 26 airlines, including Air India, Lufthansa, Singapore Airlines and South African Airlines.

Sounding bullish about the revival of Air India, a long-time member of the alliance, Panagiotoulias said the airline is on a "very strong mission" and has embarked on a major overhaul of its business. "India is a critical growth market and offers all kinds of opportunities," he told PTI in an interview here this week.

He also emphasised that having Air India in the alliance is a huge piece of the puzzle of the global network. His comments also come against the backdrop of the Air India group taking various measures to strengthen its operations, including placing a historic order for 470 planes in February this year and expanding services. Besides, India is one of the fastest-growing aviation markets in the world and has witnessed a strong recovery in domestic air passenger traffic after being severely impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.

Efforts are also going on to develop an international hub in the country. After the pandemic, Panagiotoulias said there has been a global recovery with varying speeds. "I would say North America and Europe have recovered a lot quicker than the Asia Pacific region". The Star Alliance chief replied in the affirmative on whether premium travel is on the rise after the pandemic. "Premium travel has increased, especially leisure premium and not corporate premium. We are seeing a lot of people wanting to spend on personal experiences in a premium cabin," he noted. 

Panagiotoulias said the 26 members cover the globe comprehensively on whether the alliance is looking for more members. Star Alliance says that its members include many of the world's most significant airlines and smaller regional airlines. It highlights that these combinations offer easy connections to almost any destination across the globe.

Newly appointed CEO

Panagiotoulias has more than 25 years of international experience in the airline and aviation industry and has just joined Star Alliance from Hawaiian Airlines. Australian-born Panagiotoulias joins Star Alliance from Hawaiian Airlines, where he has been senior vice president for global sales and alliances since 2014. This move comes after current CEO, Charlotta Wieland, who had been serving as interim CEO of the 26-member alliance, returns to her regular role as vice president of Alliances and Industry Affairs at SAS Scandinavian Airlines.

About Star Alliance

Star Alliance was founded by five airlines from the Americas, Europe and Asia in 1997, and currently, it has 26 carriers as members. The members come together at over 50 global hubs to offer smooth connections across a world-leading global network. As per its website, a management company based in Frankfurt and Singapore coordinates the alliance’s projects and activities, including airport co-location, digital infrastructure, frequent flyer integration and joint business lounge projects.

An alliance is an agreement between several airlines to pool resources. This move, in turn, gives them a greater ability to compete against other airlines. The first benefit this brings is codeshare flights. While codeshare agreements do exist outside of alliances, the highest density will be found within alliance members.

Star Alliance's 26 member airlines operate a fleet of ~5,033 aircraft, serving more than 1,290 airports in 195 countries on more than 19,000 daily departures. The alliance has a two-tier rewards program, Silver and Gold, with incentives including priority boarding and upgrades. Like other airline alliances, Star Alliance airlines share airport terminals (known as co-locations), and many member planes are painted in the alliance's livery.

Read next

WestJet Announced the Closure of ULCC Subsidiary Swoop

Abhishek Nayar

12 Jun 2023

WestJet is a well-known Canadian airline headquartered in Calgary, Alberta. It has built a reputation for providing travellers across the country and beyond with economical and dependable air travel services. WestJet established Swoop as an ultra-low-cost subsidiary as part of its business model to provide even more cost-effective options to travellers.

Swoop Background

Swoop, which was launched by WestJet on September 27, 2017 and began operations in June 2018, was designed to appeal to budget-conscious customers searching for affordable air travel without compromising safety or service quality. Swoop, as an ultra-low-cost carrier, employed an array of cost-cutting techniques, such as no-frills flights, charging for additional services, and operating a simplified fleet of aircraft.

The Pilots' Collective Agreement

Collective agreements are essential in the aviation industry since they determine the terms and conditions of employment for pilots and other personnel. Swoop's pilots' collective agreement was recently ratified, marking a crucial step forward in the integration process. The collective agreement reached between WestJet and the Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA) provides a 24% compensation increase for pilots over four years. According to the union, 87% voted in favour of the agreement, "which goes a long way towards recognizing the value and expertise the pilots bring to their airline and will help solve many of WestJet's pilot attraction and retention issues." The agreement outlines the terms under which Swoop pilots will transition into WestJet's mainline operations. It ensures a seamless and equitable transfer for pilots by taking into consideration variables like seniority, benefits, and career advancement opportunities within WestJet.

Mainline Operations Integration at WestJet

The decision to close Swoop and integrate it into WestJet's mainline operations is expected to benefit both airlines significantly. WestJet intends to simplify its offerings, minimize redundant expenses, and increase overall operational efficiency by consolidating resources and operations. This integration will provide travellers with a more coherent and uniform brand experience. The merger process includes a timetable with a projected completion date of October 2023. Careful preparation and execution will be carried out during this time to guarantee a smooth transition for employees and customers. "The WestJet Group is pleased to have reached an industry-leading agreement in negotiation with ALPA that recognizes the value and instrumental contributions of our current and future pilots," stated WestJet Group CEO Alexis von Hoensbroech.

"This agreement strengthens our ability to provide certainty and career opportunities across our organization for years to come while ensuring the WestJet Group's competitive sustainability." Hoensbroech stated that the 16 current Swoop aircraft that provide 'affordable' low-cost fares across Canada would leave a void in Canadian airspace; however, he plans to continue to offer great low-cost fares and ensure that each of its 180 fleet provides affordable travel options for passengers. Von Hoensbroech continued, saying: "This integration will enhance our ability to serve a broader spectrum of guests. Rather than simply 16 aircraft serving the ultra-low-cost market, each aircraft in our 180-strong fleet will offer ultra-affordable travel options through a premium in-flight experience."

Implications of the Closure

Swoop's closure has far-reaching implications for a variety of stakeholders, including personnel and customers. The merger process will have an impact on Swoop personnel, but WestJet is dedicated to minimizing any negative consequences. The company will prioritize supporting and assisting affected personnel, including exploring options within the greater WestJet organization. WestJet will make special efforts to accommodate clients who have booked flights with Swoop. Alternative options, such as rebooking on WestJet flights, will be provided to enable a smooth transition with minimal inconvenience. WestJet is currently evaluating its intentions for Swoop's routes and operations. Some routes may be integrated into WestJet's current network, while others may be adjusted or discontinued based on market demand and operational considerations.


WestJet's plan to liquidate and integrate its ultra-low-cost subsidiary, Swoop, signals a significant strategic shift for the corporation. WestJet seeks to improve efficiency while offering a more uniform travel experience for its consumers by merging resources and simplifying processes. While this decision may have immediate consequences for personnel and customers, WestJet is dedicated to minimizing disruptions while supporting those affected throughout the integration process.

With Inputs from WestJet, AeroTime, CBC

Read next

Thai Airways to Introduce A321neo into their Fleet Mid-2025

Abhishek Nayar

12 Jun 2023

Thai Airways, one of Southeast Asia's foremost carriers, is about to embark on a thrilling trajectory of fleet development. With the goal of achieving operational excellence while enhancing the customer experience, the airline has decided to lease the Airbus A321neo aircraft type, with the first introduction scheduled for mid-2025. This is a significant step forward for Thai Airways as it seeks to expand its position in the aviation market and fulfil the ever-growing requirements of passengers.

Thai Airways' Plans for Fleet Expansion

Thai Airways recognizes the necessity of an efficient and modern fleet in the midst of growing air travel demand. The airline has ambitious intentions of expanding its aircraft lineup as part of its strategic objective. The introduction of the Airbus A321neo is an essential aspect of this growth, allowing Thai Airways to cater to several destinations while providing a more comprehensive travel experience to its passengers.

An Overview of the Airbus A321neo

The Airbus A321neo is the most recent member of the A320 family of aircraft. It amalgamates cutting-edge technology, superior aerodynamics, and innovative engineering to achieve outstanding performance and efficiency. The A321neo, being a narrow-body aircraft, provides flexibility and adaptability, making it an excellent choice for both short- and medium-haul flights.

Eyeing Domestic Routes

As reported by FlightGlobal through AviationSource News, Thai Airways CEO Chai Eamsiri revealed during last week's IATA AGM in Istanbul that the airline is interested in employing the A321neo aircraft to serve domestic and regional routes. The carrier currently does not have any narrowbody aircraft in its fleet. However, Thai Smile, the airline's regional subsidiary, operates regional and domestic flights. Thai Smile operates entirely through a fleet of 20 Airbus A320-200s. Thai Airways, on the contrary, intends to absorb its subsidiary, allowing for seamless integration of the 20 A320s into its mainline fleet, which will subsequently be supplemented by the new A321neos entering the fleet in 2025. According to Eamsiri, the new A321neos would enable the airline to extend its regional footprint and service secondary locations in Australia, China, and India. While the airline CEO is eager to include the aircraft type as soon as next year, he claims that due to global supply chain challenges and a paucity of delivery slots in 2024, the earliest he can expect to do so is in 2025.

Benefits of the Airbus A321neo

Fuel Efficiency and Environmental Advantages: The A321neo features cutting-edge engines and aerodynamic improvements that result in much lower fuel consumption. This corresponds to more affordable airline operating expenses and a lower carbon impact, which is consistent with Thai Airways' commitment to sustainability.

Passenger Experience and Cabin Design: The A321neo has a spacious and pleasant cabin that is designed to improve the passenger experience. Travellers may have a comfortable voyage from take-off to landing with contemporary facilities, ergonomic seats, and an intuitive layout.

Enhanced Range and Operational Flexibility: The greater range capabilities of the aircraft allow Thai Airways to explore new markets and expand its route network. The A321neo provides the versatility to accommodate diverse travel demands, whether it is connecting thriving cities or serving popular leisure destinations.

Improved Performance and Cost Savings: The A321neo has innovative technology that enhances overall performance, such as faster climb rates, higher cruise altitudes, and optimized fuel consumption. These advancements help airlines conserve revenue by supporting more efficient operations.

Aircraft Induction Timetable

The first five Airbus A321neo aircraft are slated to be inducted in mid-2025, with subsequent inductions planned for the acquisition of an additional five aircraft. Thai Airways can streamline the integration of the new aircraft into its fleet while ensuring a seamless transition for crew training and maintenance operations owing to this phased approach. The airline can maximize the benefits of the A321neo while minimizing operational disruptions by meticulously overseeing the induction process.


Thai Airways' plans to lease the Airbus A321neo aircraft type for fleet expansion represent a significant step forward in the airline's quest for excellence. The A321neo, with its improved passenger experience and operational flexibility, promises to be a welcome addition to Thai Airways' fleet. This strategic action reflects the airline's dedication to addressing evolving consumer expectations, minimizing environmental impact, and maintaining a competitive edge in the aviation industry.

With Inputs from Aviation Source NewsFlightGlobal