2017 Event Review


Location: Lankawi, Malaysia, The Mahsuri International Exhibition Centre - Aerospace, Resorts World – Maritime
Admission: Free on public days
Parking: Free
Value: Good
Rating out of 10: Not an air show
United States Army Special Forces Black Daggers Parachute Team

Black Eagles from Republic Korea Air Force

The Langkawi International Maritime & Aerospace Exhibition (LIMA) is the largest show of its kind within the Asia Pacific region. For 2017 it was the 14th edition of this important biennially held event since its debut in 1991. LIMA is an ideal platform where industry stakeholders can liaise and expand their networks towards forging new partnerships and business agreements. LIMA is a high impact, high profile event of global interest. Its impressive list of international exhibitors and suppliers is more than matched by the supportive presence of industry elites, which range from senior Government officials, military and civil delegates to industry movers and shakers and more. LIMA is one of the rare places on earth where exhibitors as well as delegations and trade visitors can take part in two areas, the aerospace site and the maritime site. The maritime segment of the event took place on the south side of the island at the Resorts World Langkawi. The aerospace segment was held at the Mahsuri International Exhibition Center. Visitors had no problem moving between the two venues because a free shuttle service was provided. .

Some Key facts:

• Space occupied in the exhibition 119 209 square meters (15 000 more than LIMA 2015)

• 555 exhibitors (290 local companies) from 36 countries. Most of the world's top 25 aerospace and defense companies were present.

• 180 000 trade and public visitors from all over the world

2017's LIMA was the show of the firsts. For the first time there was an array of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles and Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUV). Present were the USAF MQ-1 Predator, the US Navy MQ-8 Fire Scout, Thales Fulmar Mini-UAV, Saab AUV 62 AT and the TBN UAV from the Ukraine. The Republic of Korea's Air Force aerobatic team, The Black Eagles, made their first appearance at LIMA with 9 KAI –T50Bs. The Russian Air Force Display Team, “The Russian Knights” appeared outside Russia for the first time with the brand new Sukhoi Su-30SM. The team is currently flying with 4 instead of 6 aircraft. Leonardo showcased for the first time the brand new ATR-72MP aircraft to the public, which was being proposed for Malaysia’s requirement for an advanced new maritime patrol capability. The ATR 72MP is a multirole Maritime Patrol, Electronic Surveillance and C4I (Command, Control, Communications, Computers, and Intelligence) aircraft at very affordable costs. 4 of those aircraft were delivered to the Italian Air Force, the launch customer of this type.  Leonardo where also present with the NH 90 medium lift, multi role helicopter and the AW 169.

Saab as a strong player in Asia showcased a wide range of products at their booth. Especially maritime products like the Saab Swordfish could find a market in these emerging regions. Another successful story came from Thales. Thales has been selected by AirAsia to supply avionics systems to AirAsia's new fleet of 304 A320neos. Thales will equip the 304 single-aisles with its market leading Flight Management System (FMS), the navigation solution of choice for Airbus aircraft, alongside the THALES/ACSS T3CAS surveillance platform, the preferred solution for all Airbus single aisle aircraft.

RAC MiG demonstrated the newest training simulator for MiG-29SM and a holographic booth showcasing the operating parameters of this fighter in Malaysia. As part of the proposed modernization, the aircraft can be upgraded with the new weapon management control system and the new radar system. Additionally, the fighters can be converted into multi-role combat aircraft adding air-to-ground weapon capabilities, a speaker from RAC-MiG said.

The event was officially opened by the Prime Minister of Malaysia, YAB Datuk' Sri Haji Mohammad Najib bin Tun Haji Abdul Razak, Governmental members and many official domestic and foreign delegations from domestic and foreign countries. At the opening ceremony The Royal Malaysian Air Force showcased the full potential of their air power. Among the highlights were 2 x SU-30MKM, 5 x BAe Hawk Fighter Jets (Mk 108 and Mk 208), 3 x FA-18D, 7 x PC7 Pilatus', 3 x EC725 Helicopters and 3 of the brand new Airbus A400M's. After this impressive opening gambit from the Royal Malaysian Air Force and a break until midday, the airshow speaker, Major S. Thayala Kumar Ravi Varman announced in his unique and great voice two supersonic B-1B's coming straight from Anderson Air Force Base, Guam. What a view, when two of these magnificent "Bones" approached Langkawi International Airport. The B-1's opened the second part of the flying display but were only present on the first day of the show.
In the daily flying display were present the Royal Malaysian Air Force Solo Demo from the 11 Sqn King Cobra, the Sukhoi Su-30MKM based at Gong Kedak, and from 18 Sqn Lipan, the Boeing F-18D, based at Butterworth. Both displays where amazingly flown, and showed the full maneuverability and capacity of two different types of aircrafts. Job well done! Also in the daily flying program was the French Air Force Rafale, flown by Captain Jean Guillaume Martinez. He flew the Rafale up to G-Limits, and showed an impressive precision landing. The Royal Thai Air Force was on daily display with a powerful demo of the Saab JAS-39 Gripen from the 701 Sqn based at Surat Thani. The Russian Knights and the Golden Eagles were a welcome alternation to the fast solo jet demos. A warm return to Langkawi made the Indonesian Air Force (TNI- AU = Tentara Nasional Indonesia AngkatanUdara) Demo Team the "Jupiter Aerobatic Team r". The team is equipped with 6 South Korean trainers from type KT-1B "Woongbi".
In the meantime the maritime displays were on at the Resorts World in Langkawi. Besides ships from Special Operation Command and Police, helicopters from the Royal Malaysian Navy were involved, like the Super Lynx Mk300 and the AS-555SN "Fennec". The helicopters carried special units for a hostage liberation. Another highlight in the maritime flying display was the colorful flying boat Canadair CL-415MP.
Even a submarine was on display
The static display was much diversified. Small aircraft like the DA-40, DA-42 and the DA-62 from the Austrian Manufacturer Diamond were showcased as well as big ones like the C-17 Globemaster III presented by the Royal Australian Air Force. Singapore brought an AH-64 Apache and a Boeing F-15SG to Langkawi. The Royal Malaysian Air Force presented many of its helicopters from Navy and Air Force at the static display. One of the most interesting types was the upgraded Sikorsky S-61A-4" Nuri". The Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) will be undertaking a Proof of Concept, where one RMAF Sikorsky S-61A-4 Nuri will be undergoing a trial upgrade to determine the best way of implementation on the entire fleet of Nuri helicopters. See list below of the aircraft and helicopters which were involved in the static display.
All in all, a great place to be. It was a well organized event in a unique place on earth. Great flying demos, fantastic ground displays combined with a professional organization. Job well done!!! would like to express their thanks to the Media-Team, to Major S. Thayala Kumar Ravi Varman and to Lt. Colonel John Sham for the great support on site. (Scratch, many thanks!)
Flying display participants:

1. SU-30 MKM, Royal Malaysian Air Force 5x
2. F/A-18D, Royal Malaysian Air Force 4x
3. Hawk 108/208, Royal Malaysian Air Force 6x
4. A400M, Royal Malaysian Air Force 3x
5. PC 7 MKII, Royal Malaysian Air Force 6x
6. KT-1B (Jupiter) TentaraNasionalIndonesiaAngkatanUdara 8x
7. KAI – T50B Republic Korea Air Force (Black Eagle) 9x
8. SU-30SM Russian Air Force (Russian Knights) 4x
9. Gripen, Royal Thai Air Force
10. Rafale, French Air Force
11. B-1B (Fly Pass) United States Air Force
12. Airbus 380 (Fly Pass) Malaysia Airlines Berhad (MAB)
13. Airbus 330 Malaysia Airlines Berhad (MAB)
14. Super Lynx, Royal Malaysian Navy
15. Fennec, Royal Malaysian Navy
16. CL-415, Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency
17. Agusta AW 139, Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency
18. Dauphin AS365, Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency
19. AS 355, Royal Malaysian Police

Static included:

1. SU-30MKM Royal Malaysian Air Force
2. F/A – 18D Royal Malaysian Air Force
3. Hawk 108/208 Royal Malaysian Air Force
4. CN 235 Royal Malaysian Air Force
5. EC725 Royal Malaysian Air Force
6. A400M Royal Malaysian Air Force
7. S61A – 4 Royal Malaysian Air Force
8. Super Lynx Royal Malaysian Navy
9. Fennec Royal Malaysian Navy
10. Agusta A109 PasukanUdaraTenteraDarat
11. CL-415 Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency
12. Agusta AW 139 Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency
13. Dauphin AS365 Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency
14. MI-17 Fire&Rescue Department, Air Unit
15. Agusta AW 139 Fire&Rescue Department, Air Unit
16. King Air 350 Royal Malaysian Police
17. Pilatus PC-6 Royal Malaysian Police
18. Learjet 60 Department of Civil Aviation
19. F-15SG Republic of Singapore Air Force
20. AH 64 Aparche Republic of Singapore Air Force
21. C 17 Royal Australian Air Force
22. Gripen Royal Thai Air Force
23. KC-135 Stratotanker United States Air Force
24. F/A – 18 Super Hornet United States Navy
25. P-8 Poseidon United States Navy
26. MH-60 Seahawk United States Navy
27. IL-76 Russian Air Force
28. Airbus Helicopter H135 P3 Aerial Power Lines
29. Piaggio Avanti Aerial Power Lines
30. H130 (Helicopter) Airbus 1
31. Typhoon (FSR) Eurofighter Typhoon
32. Diamond 40 HM Aerospace
33. Diamond 42 HM Aerospace
34. Agusta AW 169 Leonardo
35. CN 235 PT DirgantaraIndonesia
36. Diamond DA 62 SapuraAero
37. Kodiak 100 SapuraAero
38. MD 600N HelicopterSapuraAero
39. Citation CJ4 SapuraAero


Report and photography by Peter Thivessen and Wolfgang Jarisch for

Click on image to start a slide show

Images from LIMA 2017 by
Copyright ©2017 TheAviationMagazine.com All trade names, trademarks and manufacturer names are the property of their respective owners.