Iran Aviation Industries Organization

The Iran Aviation Industries Organization (IAIO) (Persian: سازمان صنایع هوایی ایران, Sazman-e Sânai'-ye Havaii-ye Iran), also known as the Aerospace Industries Organization, is an Iranian state-owned corporation established in 1966 for the purpose of planning, controlling, and managing the civil & military aviation industry of Iran. The Aerospace Industries Organization acts as both an OEM, directly manufacturing aircraft and aerospace products, and as a conglomerate, holding other Iranian state-owned aviation corporations.

Iran Aviation Industries Organization
سازمان صنایع هوایی ایران
TypeAerospace manufacturer
Government-owned corporation
HeadquartersTehran, Iran
Key people
Professor Afshin Khajeh Fard (Head)
ProductsCommercial airliners, Civil & Military aircraft, Civil aviation
ParentMinistry of Defense
Iran Civil Aviation Organization
SubsidiariesAviation & Aerospace Industries
Qods Aviation Industry

Currently, the IAIO is responsible for directing these aviation organizations: SAHA, HESA, PANHA, Civil Aviation industries. These organizations have different and complementary roles in Iranian Aerospace and Iranian civil aviation.[1]

The Iran Helicopter Support and Renewal Company (IHSRC), or PANHA, was formed in 1969, the Iranian Aircraft Industries (IACI) in 1970, and Iran Aircraft Manufacturing Industries Corporation (IAMI), also known under its Persian acronym HESA, in 1974. Two other important companies, Iran Aviation Industries Organization of the Armed Forces, (also known as the Iranian Armed Forces Aviation Industries Organization (IAFAIO)), and Qods Aviation Industry Company Research Center were formed in the early 1980s.

It is headquartered in the Lavizan suburb of Tehran and employs more than 10,000 people across 13 major factories.[2] In addition to its aerospace work, IAIO is heavily involved in Iran's ballistic missile program.[2]


IAIO acts as a policy maker and coordinator to promote an indigenous Iranian aeronautical industry by providing and assisting the Iranian aircraft industries with needed technologies, knowledge and parts.

Iran's aviation industry is making rapid strides. As evidenced by the inaugural flight of Iran's indigenously designed and manufactured Azarakhsh and Saeqeh fighter jet to the mass production and launch of helicopters, turboprops, and passenger planes. Iran has also produced a Boeing 737-800 simulator, a first in Mideast.[3] With a population of 81 million, Iran needs to have 6,300 airplanes while it does not possess more than nine aircraft for every one million individuals.[4]


Iran's aviation industry infrastructure was by and large established in the 1930s, at the time of the Shah Reza Pahlavi, where the German Junkers & Co Aviation provided the foreign expertise and assistance.

The industry was later expanded in the 1970s in the reign of Shah Muhammad Reza Pahlavi, benefiting from the boosted oil revenues. Not only did the Shah order vast quantities of America’s most advanced weapons, he was also acquiring the capability to produce them in Iran. Under a multibillion-dollar industrialisation programme, the Shah commissioned US arms firms to build entire weapons factories from scratch in Iran.

Thus Bell Helicopter (a division of Textron, Inc.) was building a factory to produce Model-214 helicopters in Isfahan. Northrop Corporation was also a joint partner in Iran Aircraft Industries, inc., which maintained many of the US military aircraft sold to Iran and was expected to produce aircraft components and eventually complete planes. These efforts represented a large share of US industrial involvement in Iran, and were a centrepiece of the Shah’s efforts to develop modern, high-technology industries.[1]

After western sanctions following the Iranian Revolution, the general official policy of Iranian government changed from having the best available in the world to being able to manufacture independently in order to meet domestic needs, specially of technological products and therefore becoming "sanction-proof".

In no other field this urgency was higher than aeronautics. Therefore, Iran has avoided the need to purchase better western aircraft available to it from time to time in favor of inferior ones that could be manufactured in Iran through arrangements of purchasing licenses and technologies as well as reverse-engineering parts, mostly to avoid situations that Iran has gone through during the 1980s till now by not being able to maintain what it had due to domestic technological starvation.[5][6]

Major projectsEdit

Fotros is one of the reconnaissance, surveillance, and combat unmanned aerial vehicles that is designed and developed in 2013.
HESA manufactured and flown IrAn-140-100

Former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad had favored the purchase of aircraft such as Iran-140 which are manufactured in Iran.[7]

Iran’s Aviation Industries Organization plans to manufacture 100 advanced Tupolev Tu-214 and Tu-204 airplanes with a capacity of 210 persons each in cooperation with Russia within the next 10 years.[8] Iran also intends to manufacture at least 50 Ka-32 helicopters in Iran under license of Kamov[9] and negotiations are underway to manufacture 50 An-148 under licence, probably with similar arrangements as Iran-140 to be named Iran-148.[10][11][12] Agreements were signed with Russia for co-development and co-manufacture of an uncertain amount of Tu-334 airliners in Iran with production to commence simultaneously both in Iran and Russia.[13] Another agreement with Poltava Helicopter Company of Ukraine allows Iran to manufacture the Aerokopter AK1-3 Sanka ultra-light multi-purpose helicopters in Iran.[citation needed] Yet, Iran says it is prepared to order passenger planes from Boeing and Airbus if the United States lifts sanctions against Iran.[14]

In 2010, Iran's Defense Ministry said it will begin the production phase of a domestically-manufactured medium-size passenger plane designed to carry up to 150 passengers.[citation needed] This project is scheduled to be completed by 2018.[citation needed]

In August 2018, IAIO unveiled the Kowsar (or Kosar) jet trainer and strike aircraft ahead of its maiden flight. The Kowsar will be produced in single and two-seater versions.[15][16]

Iran states that it will become an exporter of plane parts within 7 years (2019).[citation needed]

Jet enginesEdit

Owj is a high-performance turbojet engine that can be used in a variety of aerial vehicles.

In 2016, Iran unveiled its first "national turbojet engine" dubbed "Owj" (Zenith).[17] Manufactured with more than 14,000 parts, it is capable of flight at 50,000 feet and can be mounted on planes with a maximum takeoff weight of ten tons.[17] Iran says that superalloys and specialized furnaces "made in Iran" have been used for this engine. Some analysts have pointed out that this engine shows close resemblance to the General Electric J85 turbojet engine (expected to serve with U.S. Air Force until 2040.)[18]

Legal issuesEdit

In 2006 Textron sued IAIO, for producing counterfeits of six types of its Bell unit helicopters without licenses thereby using trade secrets and patented designs without permission and demanded compensation for damages. In another lawsuit (Bell Helicopter Textron Inc. v. Islamic Republic of Iran, Case No. 06cv1694, in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia) brought by Iran against Textron earlier, Iran had sought damages against unfulfilled contracts dating back before revolution. Textron ultimately sent five commercial helicopters to Iran in addition to providing spare parts and training in 1994 to settle the dispute.[19]

In summer of 2010, Iran requested that the United States deliver the 80th F-14 it had purchased in 1974, but delivery was denied after the Islamic Revolution.[20][21]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b John Pike. "Iran Aviation Industry". Archived from the original on 2018-06-23. Retrieved 2012-07-03.
  2. ^ a b "NTI: Country Overviews: Iran: Missile Facilities". NTI. May 2004. Archived from the original on 6 July 2008.
  3. ^ "Iran unveils new plane, opens drones' production lines". Archived from the original on 2012-06-12. Retrieved 2012-07-03.
  4. ^ "Iran to introduce wide-body plane in 2013". Archived from the original on 2012-08-12. Retrieved 2012-07-03.
  5. ^ "Iran's Air Forces: - The Washington Institute for Near East Policy". 2005-12-22. Archived from the original on 2009-02-14. Retrieved 2012-07-03.
  6. ^ "Iran signs LoI for 50 Antonov An-148 regional jets". 2008-11-13. Retrieved 2012-07-03.
  7. ^ Video on YouTube[dead link]
  8. ^ Iran Daily - National 06/22/08[permanent dead link]
  9. ^ John Pike. "PANHA Iran Helicopter Support and Renewal Company". Archived from the original on 2012-06-29. Retrieved 2012-07-03.
  10. ^ John Pike. "An 148 (Antonov 148)". Archived from the original on 2012-06-01. Retrieved 2012-07-03.
  11. ^ "Government portal :: Iran ready to launch batch production of An-148 planes". Archived from the original on 2012-04-02. Retrieved 2012-07-03.
  12. ^ "Iran plans to build Russian Ka-32 helicopters under license | World | RIA Novosti". 2012-03-07. Archived from the original on 2012-10-11. Retrieved 2012-07-03.
  13. ^ John Pike. "Tu-334". Archived from the original on 2012-06-01. Retrieved 2012-07-03.
  14. ^ [1] Archived January 22, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
  15. ^ "New Fighter Jet Unveiled By Iranian Military". Forces Network. British Forces Broadcasting Service. 21 August 2018. Archived from the original on 21 August 2018. Retrieved 22 August 2018.
  16. ^ "Iran unveils new domestically-produced fighter jet". BBC News. 21 August 2018. Archived from the original on 22 August 2018. Retrieved 22 August 2018.
  17. ^ a b "Rouhani pays visit to AIO of Defense Ministry". 21 August 2016. Archived from the original on 22 August 2016. Retrieved 22 August 2016.
  18. ^ "Iran unveil indigenous turbojet engine". Archived from the original on 2016-08-26. Retrieved 2016-08-28.
  19. ^ "The Providence Journal | Rhode Island breaking news, sports, politics, business, entertainment, weather and traffic - - Providence Journal". Archived from the original on 2011-09-26. Retrieved 2012-07-03.
  20. ^ "Iranian Air Force seeks return of F-14 bombers from U.S." Archived 2010-09-02 at the Wayback Machine Tehran Times
  21. ^ Parsons, Gary. "Iran wants its F-14 back." Archived 2012-03-08 at the Wayback Machine AirForces Monthly, 5 August 2010.

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