A peacock rarely leaves viewers unaffected when it puts on the full show of its plumage. Exactly like the Indian Air Force’s (IAF) helicopter display team, Sarang, which has left spectators gasping for more at the just-concluded International Aviation and Space Show at Zhukovsky, Russia.
The IAF’s ‘peacock’ — Sarang is the Sanskrit word for India’s national bird — with its four modified Dhruv (Advanced Light Helicopters), captivated spectators from across the world at the biennial Russian aerospace industry event, better known as MAKS or Mezhdunarodnyj Aviatsionno-Kosmicheskij Salon.
Being the only participating rotary-wing display team, the local media and guests simply couldn’t stop raving about its synchronised aerial ballet. Sarang’s four beautifully painted metal birds drew instant comparison with the graceful dance of the flamboyant pheasants.
Part 1 onboard Sarang 4:
Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome on board. Feel the adrenaline rush and be a part of MAKS 2021.
— Sarang Helicopter Display Team (@sarang_iaf) July 23, 2021
“While it is natural to expect daring manoeuvres and precise formation by fixed-wing aircraft, it is appreciably difficult to do the same in helicopters, owing to the unstable nature of rotary-wing,” an IAF statement said.
“The dexterity and temperament required for display flying are acquired and honed through rigorous training and confidence in one’s own flying ability, faith in fellow team members, and absolute trust in the machine.”
Besides, a lot of effort goes on behind the scenes, too, where maintenance personnel work hard to keep the machines in excellent condition for all flying tasks. The manoeuvres in the air are accompanied by a live, running commentary, complemented by some peppy background music.
MAKS was held on July 20-25 at Zhukovsky, some 40 kilometres from the Russian capital.