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Wreckage of IAF’s AN-32 aircraft found in Bay of Bengal

Utkarsh Classes Last Updated 13-01-2024
Wreckage of IAF’s AN-32 aircraft found in Bay of Bengal Defence 4 min read

The wreckage of a transport aircraft AN-32 of the Indian Air Force has been found in the Bay of Bengal after about 7 and a half years. It has been discovered at a depth of about 3.4 kilometres in the sea.

AN-32 aircraft missing since 2016:

  • An Indian Air Force AN-32 aircraft went missing during a mission in 2016. At that time, a total of 29 people were on board.

Information received from Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV):

  • The National Institute of Ocean Technology obtained photographs from an Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV).
  • The wreckage of the AN-32 aircraft was found in the Bay of Bengal, about 310 km from the coast of Chennai.
  • The Defence Ministry has also clarified that the photographs obtained from the AUV are of the Air Force's transport aircraft AN-32 only.
  • During the search of the crash site, information also came to light that no plane crash had happened here before. Therefore, perhaps this debris is from the Air Force aircraft AN-32 that crashed in 2016.
  • The National Institute of Ocean Technology, an agency of the Ministry of Earth Sciences, recently deployed an AUV in the deep sea at the possible crash site of the missing plane.

Many techniques were used in the search for AN-32:

  • According to the Defence Ministry, the wreckage of AN-32 was found at a depth of about 3,400 metres. Many modern technologies were used in the invention of AN-32 which mainly: 
    • Multi-beam sonar (sound navigation and ranging)
    • Synthetic Aperture Sonar
    • High-resolution photography

Background of AN-32 plane crash:

  • On July 22, 2016, an IAF plane AN-32 was going from Chennai to Port Blair. The AN-32 took off from Tambaram Airport in Chennai in the morning. The aircraft disappeared from radar 16 minutes after take off. It was to land at Port Blair at 11.30, but it could not be traced till later.
  • There were a total of 29 people in it. There were 6 crew members among them.

About AN-32:

  • AN-32 is a twin-engine aircraft. It is used as a cargo plane.
  • The transport capacity of this aircraft is to carry 7.5 tonnes or 50 passengers.
  • There are ten types of AN-32.
  • The maximum speed of AN-32 is 530 km per hour. Its weight is 16 thousand 800 kg. Its maximum takeoff weight is 27000 Kg.
  • It has been designed for both civilian and military use.
  • The prototype of the AN-32 made its first flight in 1976.

Related accidents involving AN-32:

  • AN-32 went missing over the Indian Ocean on March 25, 1986. The plane has not been found yet. There are 4 passengers and 3 crew members on board.
  • AN-32 was involved in a plane crash in 1999.
  • 21 people died in the crash shortly before landing at Delhi airport.
  • On June 10, 2009, this plane carrying 13 people crashed shortly after takeoff in Arunachal Pradesh.


Answer:- Bay of Bengal

Answer:- 2016

Answer:- Transport aircraft

Answer:- Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV)
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