World Cup final to begin with IAF air show watched by VIPs
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Australia’s Deputy Prime Minister Richard Marles will be among the superstars in the audience for Sunday’s World Cup cricket final between India and Australia in Ahmedabad. The Indian Air Force’s famed Surya Kiran aerobatics team is expected to do an air show before the match.
- The Surya Kiran Aerobatic Team (SKAT) is an Indian Air Force aerobatics demonstration team. The team was founded in 1996 and is part of the IAF’s 52nd Squadron.
- The team is well-known on a national and worldwide scale for its air shows and demonstrations.
- The squadron consists of nine Hawk Mk132 aircraft from Bidar Air Base.
Formation of the Surya Kiran Aerobatic Team (SKAT):
- SKAT was founded in 1996 and is part of the Indian Air Force’s 52nd Squadron.
- HAL HJT-16 Kiran Mk.2 military trainer aircraft were initially based at Bidar Air Force Station in Karnataka.
- Due to a lack of training aircraft, the team was suspended in February 2011.
- Reopened in 2017 with Hawk Mk-132 aircraft.
History of Aerobatics in the Indian Air Force:
- The Thunderbolts were an aerobatic team that flew blue and white Hunter fighter bombers.
- A Formation Aerobatic Team was formed in Bidar in 1990, employing Kiran-II trainers.
- SKAT was founded in May 1996 to take part in AVIA-96, India’s first major air show.
- On May 27, 1996, SKAT flew its first six-aircraft formation sortie.
Early Achievements and Public Displays:
- The squad rapidly advanced from four-aircraft formations to six-aircraft formations, and then to nine-aircraft formations.
- On September 15, 1996, it was initially displayed at the Air Force Administrative College’s golden jubilee celebrations in Coimbatore.
- After meeting with the Royal Air Force’s Red Arrows and the French aerobatic team ‘Patrouille de France’ in 1999, the team developed the “Synchro” move.
- SKAT participated in international events such as the International Fleet Review in Mumbai (2001), Colombo, Sri Lanka (marking the 50th Anniversary Celebrations of the Sri Lankan Air Force), and Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace Exhibition (LIMA) 2007 in Malaysia.