Monday, April 26, 2010

Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC), Kamra - - World's 3rd Largest Assembly Plant: The Backbone of Aviation Engineering in Pakistan

The Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (commonly abbreviated PAC) is a facility used to service, assemble and manufacture aircraft for the military of Pakistan. Located at Kamra, located in Attock District in the mountainous north of the Punjab, Pakistan. It is the world's third largest assembly plant.

Presently, the Pakistan Aeronautical Complex Kamra comprises of four factories which are spread over an area of 10 square kilometers. The Pakistan Aeronautical Complex, in short PAC, started with three main Ministry of Defence projects designated P-721, P-741 and P-751. The first two digits show the year of project approval and launch, the third digit is a serial designator. PAC has become a center of excellence in aviation engineering based on more than 30 years of experience in Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) of fighter aircraft, their components and engines.

In the year 1972, PAC started with the MRO of F-6 aircraft of Chinese origin and subsequently progressed towards MRO of Mirage III & V aircraft and ATAR 09C engines, F100-220E engines modules of F-16 aircraft, J-69 engines of T-37 aircraft, T-56 engines of C-130 aircraft and avionics upgrades of fighters aircrafts of Pakistan Air Force.

F-6 Rebuild Factory:

F-6 Rebuild Factory (F-6RF), formerly known as P-721, is primarily dedicated to the overhaul and parts manufacture of Chinese aircraft in service with the Pakistan Air force (PAF). The factory is capable of overhauling and parts manufacturing for the Shenyang F-6 (now retired by the PAF), Nanchang A-5 and F-7 combat aircraft, as well as the Shenyang FT-5 and FT-6 jet trainer aircraft.

Mirage Rebuild Factory:

The Mirage Rebuild Factory (MRF), formerly known as P-741, is dedicated to the overhaul of French origin military aircraft in service with the Pakistan Air Force (PAF), the Dassault Mirage III and Mirage V combat aircraft. Overhaul and manufacturing services were utilized by other countries with French Mirage aircraft in service. This factory also grew to service and overhaul the Pratt & Whitney F100 turbofan engines belonging to the F-16 Fighting Falcon combat aircraft of the PAF.

Aircraft Manufacturing Factory:

Aircraft Manufacturing Factory (AMF), formerly known as P-751, is dedicated to heavy military aircraft manufacturing. The MFI-17 Mushshak basic trainer aircraft built under license for use by the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) and Pakistan Army aviation wing. This factory project managed the aircraft modification and development venture that resulted in the MFI-395 Super Mushshak basic trainer, based on the MFI-17 Mushshak. Development of the K-8 Karakorum (also known as Hongdu JL-8) intermediate/advanced jet trainer was done in cooperation with Hongdu Aviation Industry Group of China, with AMF manufacturing parts for the aircraft. The JF-17 multi-role combat aircraft (also known as FC-1), a joint project between China and Pakistan, is now being manufactured by AMF. The MFI-17, MFI-395, K-8 and JF-17 are now in service with the (PAF). AMF also designs and manufactures unmanned aerial vehicles for uses such as target practice.

Manufacture of sub-assemblies for the JF-17 light-weight multi-role fighter began on 22 January 2008, while serial production of the fighter began on 30 June 2009.

On August 20, 2009 the PAF announced that it would begin production of its own unmanned aerial vehicles in collaboration with Italian company Selex Galileo. Production of the UAV, named Falco, was to begin soon.

Kamra Avionics and Radar Factory (KARF):

The Radar Maintenance Centre (RMC), was established in 1983 to overhaul and rebuild ground-based radar systems. In 1989, RMC was expanded to become Kamra Radar & Avionics Factory (KARF). KARF has the facilities to assemble and overhaul airborne as well as ground-based radar systems, electronics and avionics. Currently the only ISO 9002 certified facility among PAC, the factory was involved in upgrading the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) Chengdu F-7P interceptor fleet by replacing the original Italian built FIAR Grifo-7 radar with the more capable FIAR Grifo-7 mk-II radar, which was assembled under licence by KARF. More recently, radar production involved the license assembly of the latest upgrade variant of the FIAR Grifo-7, the Grifo-7MG radar, which arms the Chengdu F-7PG combat aircraft of the PAF. In mid 2009 it was reported that KARF personnel had completed training on printed circuit board assembly machines supplied by U.S. company APS Novastar, which would be used to make circuit boards for combat aircraft avionics.

As PAC’s capabilities become competitive in the region, commercial ventures from national and international companies are also being undertaken.

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