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SuperJet 100 flight testing reaches 300 hours

12th February 2009 - 09:15 GMT | by The Shephard News Team


Sukhoi Civila Aircraft Company (SCA) has reported that the two Superjet 100 flight prototypes have now completed more than 90 flights, totalling 300 hours.

The second prototype has undertaken one of the most hazardous tests, designed to prove flutter safety. The company says the high angles of attack and flutter safety tests reaffirm the aerodynamics perfection and airframe strength.

The first SSJ100 prototype has completed over 80 flights, totalling 250 hours. The certification programme has now entered its second stage of high angle attack certification. Some modifications were introduced to the control system after the completion of the first stage.

The aircraft now is being tested in what is referred to as "normal mode", which represents the most advanced level of control system automation. This second stage of flight tests is being performed by Alexander Yablontsev and Vladimir Biryukov, AR IAC test-pilot, an expert in trials on critical regimes. Biryukov has been involved in numerous flight test campaigns for over 50 aircraft of both Russian and international origin.

Both test pilots have praised the aircraft, in particular its aerodynamics, which allow the aircraft to recover easily; the aircraft has also demonstrated how precisely and predictably it can respond to a pilot's actions.

The first test stage was performed in the minimal mode - the most complex mode for piloting - and the aircraft was rated highly by the pilots. The design has shown that properly selected control laws improve piloting performance, increasing the SSJ100 flight safety.

In October 2008 the Central Aerohydrodynamic Institute (TsAGI) launched the certification tests of the static aircraft in a designed load range. The loads applied to the static aircraft exceed the operational requirements by 1.5 times. These tests were conducted on the separate parts of the airframe to demonstrate that the strength characteristics match the values calculated during the design phase with an accuracy of 98%; and that the airframe meets the stringent weight limits.

The Siberian Research Aviation Institute (SibNIA) completed assembly of the prototype SN95006, which was shipped from Komsomolsk to Novosibirsk, where the airframe is now being fitted with loads and measurement systems. Fatigue tests are scheduled to confirm not only the airframe life cycle - 70,000 flight hours - but also to check the maintenance intervals anticipated for operation with airlines.

The first two aircraft will perform two thirds of the certification flight tests. The flight test programme consists of four aircraft, including two other prototypes - 95004 and 95005 - are currently in final assembly and being fitted with systems.

Meanwhile, at Komsomolsk, the production of the first aircraft to be delivered to the launch customer is under way. To date, KnAAPO has completed the joining of the fuselage and wing assembly of SSJ100 SN95007 and is transferring it to the SCAC final assembly shop. Aircraft 8 is at the section assembly stage, and Aircraft 9 and 10 are undergoing panel assembly; parts production for the Aircraft 11, which is the fifth aircraft to be delivered to the customer, has recently begun.

The Shephard News Team


The Shephard News Team

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