Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. (Booth H72) and Geological Survey of India are to deploy a Dhruv light twin helicopter equipped with geophysical equipment for mineral exploration. The dedicated aircraft was formally unveiled and named Garuda Vasudha by the country’s minister of mines, Dinsha Patel, in New Delhi last month. The Indian government is hoping to cut its oil import bill by finding such resources in its soil.
The Dhruv is fitted with four aerogeophysical sensors–time domain electromagnetic, spectrometric, magnetic, and gravimetric for an equipment cost of $10 million. It will help understand the sub-surface geology and regional tectonic set-up. “With the best and modern equipment fitted, this helicopter will help in exploration and mapping of mineral wealth in India,” Patel stated.
Capabilities include detection of oil, gas and minerals–gold, copper, thorium and other rare earth minerals–in addition to environmental and nuclear surveillance.