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november 2010 • Special edition for Airshow China 2010

Be-200 gets EASA type certificate [p.19]

Carrierborne pilots training [p.38]

SSJ100 certification soon [p.16]

Tikhomirov’s AESA ready for flight tests [p.36]

MC-21 gets first orders [p.30]

Mi-26T HEAVYLIFTER under upgrade [p.12]

JF-17: 21st-century MiG-21 from Chengdu [p.42]

An-148 production grows up [p.26]


november 2010 Editor-in-Chief Andrey Fomin

Deputy Editor-in-Chief Vladimir Shcherbakov

Editor Yevgeny Yerokhin

Columnist Alexander Velovich Artyom Korenyako

Special correspondents Alexey Mikheyev, Victor Drushlyakov, Andrey Zinchuk, Valery Ageyev, Natalya Pechorina, Marina Lystseva, Dmitry Pichugin, Sergey Krivchikov, Sergey Popsuyevich, Piotr Butowski, Alexander Mladenov, Miroslav Gyurosi

Design and pre-press Grigory Butrin

Translation Yevgeny Ozhogin

Cover picture Andrey Fomin

Publisher

Director General Andrey Fomin

Deputy Director General Nadezhda Kashirina

Marketing Director George Smirnov

Business Development Director Mikhail Fomin

News items for “In Brief” columns are prepared by editorial staff based on reports of our special correspondents, press releases of production companies as well as by using information distributed by ITAR-TASS, ARMS-TASS, Interfax-AVN, RIA Novosti, RBC news agencies and published at www.aviaport.ru, www.avia.ru, www.gazeta.ru, www.cosmoworld.ru web sites Items in the magazine placed on this colour background or supplied with a note “Commercial” are published on a commercial basis. Editorial staff does not bear responsibility for the contents of such items. The magazine is registered by the Federal Service for supervision of observation of legislation in the sphere of mass media and protection of cultural heritage of the Russian Federation. Registration certificate PI FS77-19017 dated 29 November 2004

© Aeromedia, 2010

P.O. Box 7, Moscow, 125475, Russia Tel. +7 (495) 644-17-33, 798-81-19 Fax +7 (495) 644-17-33 E-mail: info@take-off.ru http://www.take-off.ru

Dear reader, You are holding another issue of the Take-Off magazine – a special supplement to Russian national aerospace magazine VZLET. The issue has been timed with Airshow China 2010. By tradition, the aerospace exhibition in Zhuhai has been attended by numerous Russian and Ukrainian participants and businessmen. Small wonder, because the Russian-Chinese aerospace cooperation has been given a strong impetus over the past 20 years. As a result, China has become in 1990s a top importer of Russian aircraft, first and foremost, Sukhoi jets. Today, the Russian-made Sukhoi Su-27SK/UBK and Su-30MKK fighters have been the mainstay of PLAAF’s new-generation fighter fleet while two dozens Su-30MK2s serve with PLANAF. Moreover, China’s own aerospace plants have mastered Su-27SK’s licence production. Aero engines deliveries also have been high on the priority list of the Russian-Chinese aviation cooperation, with these turbofans powering both Russia-supplied and advanced indigenous Chinese fighters, the J-10 and FC-1 (JF-17). Russian and Ukrainian experts consult their Chinese counterparts developing new aircraft with advanced Chinese L-15 trainer aircraft fitted with Ukrainian-Russian AI-222 turbofan engine afterburner version and future transport plane among them. However, the Russian-Chinese cooperation does not limit itself to fixed-wing aircraft. China operates more then a hundred Russian-made Mil Mi-17 and Mi-171 helicopters. Recently three Mi-26 heavylifters were delivered to China from Russia and already have got a great success here in firefighting and rescue operations. New deliveries of Kamov Ka-28 shipborne helicopters started last year. So, the cooperation has been on the rise, with new contracts for aircraft deliveries and joint projects development could be placed in the future. These themes became the main topics of this issue. As usual, you are also getting news on other key events in the Russian and CIS aerospace fields over the past couple of months. I hope the materials will come in handy for you to have a better grasp of the large Russian and Ukrainian expositions at the Zhuhai airshow and keep abreast of the latest development in Russia’s aviation. I wish all participants and guests of Airshow China 2010 to meet their partners, establish useful links and snag lucrative contracts. See you at the future air shows! Sincerely, Andrey Fomin Editor-in-chief Take-Off magazine


contents

CONTRACTS AND DELIVERIES Anatoly Isaykin: Russian arms mean reliability, quality, success . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4

November 2010

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MTA joint venture set up at long last. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 Indonesia gets Su-27SKM . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 First Il-76MF built for Jordan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 Beriev delivers third A-50EI . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 All of 40 Mi-171s delivered to UTair . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10

Mi-26T2 New-generation Russian heavylifter . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12

INDUSTRY

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Superjet’s certification programme nearing completion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Tu-204SM gearing up for its maiden flight . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . First production An-70 could be completed in 2011 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Russian-built Il-76: maiden flight in one year . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Ka-52 enters production in Arsenyev . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Be-200 certificated in Europe, with new orders awarded . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Kazan Helicopters rolled out second Mi-38. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

16 17 17 18 18 19 20

Motor Sich engines from small UAVs to heavy lifters . . . . . . . . . . . . 22

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COMMERCIAL AVIATION An-148 Production grows up . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26 MC-21 lands its first orders. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30

30 MILITARY AVIATION New Su-34s for Russian Air Force. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . The first Su-30M2 built . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PAK FA tests go on . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . First Ansat helicopters arrive to Syzran . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

32 32 34 34

558 ARP offers Satellite . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35

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Tikhomirov-NIIP AESA ready for flight tests Interview with Tikhomirov-NIIP Director General Yury Bely . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36 Following a long pause Report from Nitka . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38

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JF-17 Sino-Pakistani 21st-Century MiG-21? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42 www.take-off.ru


All news of MAKS 2011 airshow in MAKS news show daily from Take-off magazine publisher

Distribution:

• Every exhibitor’s stand and chalet • Thousands of trade visitors at the entrance gates • Chalet of the President of Russia • Publisher’s stand and distribution points throughout the exhibition area

MAKS News Daily newspaper is an on-site publication with a 10,000 copies circulation covering all important events of the airshow, exhibitors’ news, latest aerospace headlines, news conferences reports Postal address: P.O. Box 7, Moscow, 125475, Russia Tel./fax: + 7 495 644-17-33 Mobile: + 7 495 798-81-19 E-mail: info@take-off.ru website: http://www.take-off.ru

With it’s exhibition-focused content, interviews with aerospace top-managers and decision makers the main topics are: • Aerospace industry • Commercial aviation • Combat aircraft • Aero engines and avionics • Weapons and air defence • UAVs, etc.


contracts and deliveries | interview

ANATOLY ISAYKIN: RUSSIAN ARMS MEAN RELIABILITY, QUALITY, SUCCESS Rosoboronexport, the sole Russian state arms trade company entitled to export the whole range of military and dual-purpose products, technologies and services, is currently marking its tenth anniversary. The Rosoboronexport Corporation was established by the decree of the President of the Russian Federation with the authority to conduct foreign trade operations with the whole export nomenclature of Russian arms and joint research and development works in cooperation with defence enterprises and research institutes both in Russia and abroad. Its status warrants state support for all its export/import operations. The Corporation accounts now for more than 80% share in Russia's foreign military sales. Rosoboronexport focuses its business development strategy on forming, strengthening and developing long-term partnerships with foreign countries under the motto "Efficiency. Reliability. Quality". On the eve of the Airshow China 2010 exhibition Take-off asked Anatoly Isaykin, Rosoboronexport’s Director General, to shed light on the key activities of the Corporation. Could you briefly describe current state of the Russia’s arms trade and prioritise geographical regions, most important for Rosoboronexport? Russia's military technical cooperation with foreign states has been practised for many a century. Rosoboronexport has inherited the

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best traditions of its predecessors in establishing lasting relations with foreign partners. But military technical cooperation is not a pure "arms trade". It occupies a specific zone within the Russia's foreign economic activities where long-term mutually beneficial partnerships with foreign countries

are built. It is only natural as procured arms will be in service for 20, 30 or even 50 years. When an importing country purchases our arms, it entrusts us with the most precious state issue – its security, and ultimately – its independence and territorial integrity. Such country becomes a long-time reliable ally of Russia in both military-political and economic areas. Every year Rosoboronexport increases its foreign sales value by $500–700 mln. As a result, the amount of foreign military sales carried out by Rosoboronexport has augmented for the last 10 years almost by two and a half times. Russian military-purpose products also have been delivered to much wider geographical destinations. At present Rosoboronexport maintains cooperation with some 70 countries. If previously India and China took up the main share of contracts (up to 80% of sales value), they are now joined by other importers which have become major Russian arms recipients, such as Algeria, Venezuela, Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia and some other countries. The Corporation is proactive in developing new markets. Latin American countries are a good example of such markets. We have contracts with Peru, Columbia, Brazil, Argentina, and Cuba, prospects also exist for www.take-off.ru


contracts and deliveries | interview promotion of Russian arms to Chile, Uruguay, and Ecuador. Military technical cooperation with countries in South East Asia, the Middle East, and North Africa is continued on a mutually beneficial basis as well. We maintain military technical cooperation with our close neighbours from the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) and the Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO) within the guidelines of the Russia's state policy. Our partners are offered substantial preferences. This is also natural since armed forces of the CIS/ CSTO countries are equipped with Soviet and Russian-made weapons. We are developing very dynamic mutually advantageous relations in this area with Azerbaijan, Belarus, Kazakhstan, and other member-states. Of course, when supplying weapon systems, Rosoboronexport observes all international conventions, does not violate the established force balance in the regions nor allows illegal proliferation of weapons around the world and their falling in the hands of terrorist organisations and rogue totalitarian states. Do you have any “hot list� of military-purpose products, favoured by foreign partners? The nomenclature of military-purpose products offered for export increases from

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year to year. Now it includes several thousand items that are equal in quality with the best world products and even surpass them in some respects. Russian combat systems are actively adapted to meet NATO standards and are in demand among member-states of this organisation. Russian weapons and military equipment are favourably distinguished from competing products by their permanent advantage in cost-effectiveness. All the above have allowed Russia to keep for many years the second place in the arms sales value. What are the new business directions, considered by Rosoboronexport in order to secure its position on the world arms trade market? Rosoboronexport continues to improve its exports business concept in collaboration with foreign partners. If previously military equipment was sold as it was, now it is offered with a set of services intended to support the procured weapons during their life cycle, including: maintenance, upgrading, repairs, and even disposal when the service life has been ended. Many customer states set up their own repair bases and servicing centres, and organise upgrading works and training of combat crews and technical personnel. In India, for example, the joint venture "Rosoboronservice" has been established to

provide after-sale servicing of ships, aircraft and helicopters. Preparations are done for opening similar centres in other regions. In India also functions the T-90S MBT licence production plant. Rosoboronexport always tries to help its partners expertly and smoothly integrate Russian-made equipment into existing defence structures, making the whole system operate efficiently, quickly, harmoniously and reliably. Such approach enhances operational effectiveness of systems and sets of equipment and reduces their cost as well as funds required for building and maintaining a corresponding infrastructure. As we know, the Corporation has strong relations with many Russian enterprises and regions. Yes, you are right. Rosoboronexport maintains business connections with more than 700 defence enterprises in 56 regions of Russia. Many of these enterprises have been provided with foreign orders for several years to come. These days when we celebrate the anniversary I wish our partners every success in business, prosperity and well-being, constructive and mutually advantageous cooperation with Rosoboronexport for the benefit of our countries and peoples.

take-off november 2010

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contracts and deliveries | news

MTA joint venture set up at long last counterpart is Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. (HAL). The signatories have a fifty-fifty ownership of the stock, with the joint venture being headquartered in Bangalore. The intergovernmental agreement on co-development and construction of the MTA was signed as far back as 2007. It makes provision for the production of 205 aircraft in Russia

Andrey Fomin

HAL

The long-awaited signature of an agreement on the establishment of Russian-Indian joint venture to develop the Multirole Transport Aircraft (MTA) took place in India on 9 September. The Russian participants in the venture are the United Aircraft Corporation (UAC) and Rosoboronexport governmentowned corporation while their Indian

and India. The overall cost of the development is set at $600.7 million and will be shouldered by the parties equally. According to an official Indian Ministry of Defence news release circulated due to the establishing of the joint venture, the MTA will have a lifting capacity of 15–20 t to meet the concurrent

requirements of the Indian and Russian air forces. Its maximum takeoff weight will stand at 65 t, cruising speed will be 800 km/h, range will account for 2,500– 2,700 km and service ceiling will equal 12,000 m. The MTA will be powered by two turbofan engines. An MTA prototype may complete its maiden flight in 2016.

The first two Su-27SKMs were flown from Komsomolsk-on-Amur to the Indonesian Air Force’s Sultan Hasanuddin air base in South Sulawesi province on 10 September, with the final – third – one airlifted

in on 16 September. On arrival, the fighters had been assembled and tested at the customer’s air base by later in September. The official handover ceremony was held by the Indonesian Air Force in late September, with the aircraft heaving participated in the traditional military parade in Jakarta on 5 October. Given the two Su-27SKs and two Su-30MKs delivered in 2003 (see the picture), the Indonesia Air Force has 10 Sukhoi fighters now but is not going to limit itself to the number. Soon after the delivery of the Su-27SKMs, the service’s commander, Air Marshal Imam Sufaat, indicated the Indonesian government’s intent to buy six more Sukhoi fighters from Russia. “Given the vast airspace of this country, 10 Sukhoi aircraft are not enough”, he told Indonesian news agency Antara. According to the Indonesian Air Force commander, Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has given the green light to the decision to acquire a new batch of Sukhoi fighters from Russia.

Indonesia gets Su-27SKM

KnAAPO

In September, the Sukhoi company delivered the three Su-27SKM single-seat multirole fighters built by the Komsomolskon-Amur Aircraft Production Association (KnAAPO) under a

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contract of 2007 to Indonesia. The Su-27SKM is an upgrade of the baseline Su-27 fighter. Under the contract, KnAAPO earlier delivered three Su-30MK2 two-seaters during 2008–2009.

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Aircraft family with expanded operational capabilities and a new level of economic efďŹ ciency 12–15% operational cost reduction in comparison with existing analogues. Innovative design solutions for airframe. Optimal fuselage cross-section to increase the comfort level or to reduce the turnaround time. Cooperation with the world leading suppliers of systems and equipment. Matching future environmental requirements. Expanded operational capabilities.

www.irkut.com


contracts and deliveries | news

First Il-76MF built for Jordan The first production-standard Il-76MF airlifter serialled 76954 took off for its maiden flight from the airfield of the Tashkent Aircraft Production Corp. named after Valery Chkalov (TAPC) on 30 September. The aircraft is designed for delivery to Jordan, that’s why it got a new designation, Il-76EI. It was flown by a Russian-Uzbek aircrew led by Ilyushin Chief Pilot Nikolay Kuimov, a Hero of Russia and a Merited Pilot of Russia. The flight was 38 min long and “uneventful”, according to the captain. TAPC built the plane under a contract for two Il-76MFs, signed by Rosoboronexport on 17 August 2005 during the visit of His Majesty Abdallah ben al-Hussein II, King of the Hashemite Kingdom and Commander-in-Chief of the Royal Jordanian Armed Services, to the MAKS 2005 air show. The Il-76MF is an Il-76MD airlifter derivative featuring the fuselage stretched by 6.6 m, which has allowed a 25% increase in the size of the cargo hold – from 321 cu.m to 400 cu.m – and a similar hike in the lifting capacity – from 47 t to 60 t. The maximum takeoff weight has grown from 190 t to 210 t, and the powerplant includes advanced PS-90A-76 engines with a takeoff thrust of 14,500 kgf (the production Il-76MD is powered by D-30KP2s 12,000 kgf each). TAPC had made the first Il-76MF prototype (c/n 90-01, reg. number

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76900) by the mid-‘90s. It first flew in Tashkent on 1 August 1995 and then was handed over to Ilyushin for testing. Manufacture of the components for 20 new-version aircraft (including 10 Il-76MF military transports 10 Il-76TF commercial freighters) was launched by TAPC in the mid-‘90s owing to the anticipated orders from the Russian Defence Ministry and commercial carriers. However, the official trials of the Il-76MF prototype dragged on, and no firm orders for the advanced aircraft had been landed for 10 years. At the time, TAPC would make Il-76MDs for China, Il-76MKI tanker planes and Il-76TD airframes for their subsequent conversion into the Indian Air Forceordered A-50EI AWACS planes in Taganrog as well as deliver Il-76TD and Il-76MD freighters by the piece to Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, Sudan, Algeria, the Uzbek Air Force, Russian Emergencies Ministry and Russian air carriers Aviacon-Zitotrans and Volga-Dnepr. Against that backdrop, the construction of the Il-76MF and Il-76TF, which became uncalled, was suspended, with the company’s backlog including four mated Il-76MF airframes and individual components for more aircraft of the type. The backlog came in handy in 2005 when Jordan displayed interest in the Il-76MF. However, the bargaining took several years. Ilyushin signed a contract for construction two aircraft by

TAPC for Jordan only on 4 July 2007. However, the signature of the contract by the developer and manufacturer did not launch the work under the Jordanian order for a long time. During the SOFEX 2010 international special forces exhibition and conference in the Jordanian capital of Amman in May, Valery Varlamov, a departmental chief with Rosoboronexport, said: “The fulfilment of the contract has run into objective difficulties calling for signature of a supplement in December 2009 and a minor postponement of the delivery”. The Rosoboronexport official stressed; “Russia is reaffirming its readiness to deliver the planes in line with the newly-agreed schedule”. Obviously, the first of the Il-76MFs will be able to set off for Jordan in 2011. The signature of the supplementary agreement in December last year, gave the deal a real impetus. By July

this year, the airframe of the first Jordan-intended Il-76MF had been almost complete, four brand-new PS-90A-76 engines supplied by the Perm Engine Company earlier this year had been mounted under its wing and installation of systems and avionics had been in full swing. The aircraft was built using the airframe of Il-76MF c/n 96-02 from TAPC’s backlog. Unlike Il-76MF c/n 90-01 tested in Russia, it is being outfitted with a number of more advanced avionics systems, some of which are used in the Il-76TD-90VD freighters TAPC manufactures for Russian carrier Volga-Dnepr. The aircraft was rolled out to TAPC’s flight test facility on 17 September. The ground tests of its onboard systems at the airfield took two weeks, and the aircraft took off for the first time on 30 September. The Perm Engine Company will have shipped to Tashkent another four PS-90A-76 engines to power the second Jordan-intended Il-76MF being assembled using the unfinished c/n 94-01 airframe. The aircraft is slated for its maiden flight in 2011. When the two Il-76MFs have been delivered, Jordan will become the only country operating this version. Most probably, when the backlog has been exhausted by TAPC that can build several more Il-76TDs (Il-76TD-90s) in various variants for Volga-Dnepr and Azerbaijan, the production of the Il-76-family aircraft will continue only in Russia by the Aviastar-SP plant in Ulyanovsk under the 476 programme.

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contracts and deliveries | news

Beriev delivers third A-50EI on the airframe of the Ilyushin Il-76TD airlifter produced by TAPC and fitted by Beriev with PS-90A-76 engines, and Israeli radar system MSA (Phalcon) mounted on the aircraft by Israeli company ELTA. In addition, the aircraft is equipped with a datalink from Russian radio corporation Vega. The first Il-76TD (c/n 94-02), earmarked for conversion into the lead A-50EI plane, was flown from the manufacturer plant in Tashkent to Taganrog in April 2005. Fitting the first aircraft with PS-90A-76 engines,

radar fairings and the in-flight refueling system as well as other airframe modifications under the A-50EI programme was complete in autumn 2007. The aircraft performed its maiden flight from Beriev’s airfield in Taganrog on 29 November 2007. On 20 January 2008, it was ferried to Israel for assembly of the radar system and conduct of the full set of improvements and tests. The first flight of the radar-equipped aircraft took place in Tel Aviv on 5 June 2008. The plane had been tested in Israel until last spring, after which it

Beriev

The third A-50EI airborne warning and control aircraft serialled KW3553 built by Beriev company for the Indian Air Force (IAF) under a trilateral contract was ferried from Taganrog to Israel on 8 October for ELTA to fit it with the MSA radar system. The first two production A-50EIs were delivered to the customer in 2009–2010. They are in service with IAF now. The A-50EI airborne warning and control system aircraft was developed under the 2004 RussoIndian-Israeli contract. It is based

flew to India on 25 May 2009 for its IAF in-service ceremony at Palam air base near New Delhi on 28 May. The aircraft was serialled KW3551. The second A-50EI aircraft under that contract, which was based on the Il-76TD airframe (c/n 94-03) delivered to Beriev in June 2005, first flew in Taganrog on 11 January 2009 and went to Israel for its radar system installation on 24 June 2009, following the completion of its factory tests. Outfitting the plane with the radar system had taken about nine months, and on 25 March 2010 the plane was ferried to the customer and entered service with IAF, serialled KW3552. The third A-50EI wrapped around the airframe of the Il-76TD (c/n 94-04) completed its first flight in Taganrog on 9 June this year and then had spent four months being painted in Ulyanovsk and tested and debugged in Taganrog. Once it has been equipped with the radar system, cleared by the acceptance tests and delivered to IAF, the contract for the three AWACS aircraft will be fulfilled. Nevertheless, the customer is not about to limit itself to three aircraft only. Negotiations are under way on delivery of several more aircraft of the type.

All of 40 Mi-171s delivered to UTair

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Mi-171 and Mi-8AMT helicopters”, said UUAP Managing Director Leonid Belykh. “The deal has been a major one to both UUAP and the Russian Helicopters JSC in terms of the number of machines delivered to a Russian commercial operator. We are proud of the job we have done and are ready to fulfil new orders from UTair and other commercial operators”. A Russian Helicopters spokesperson said that the holding company was ready to give priorities to new orders from UTair to deliver additional Mi-171 helicopters within a schedule agreed. UTair as a key customer of Russian Helicopters is also to be offered soon a new upgraded variant of the popular helicopter family – the Mi-171M that is now under development.

UUAP

9 September saw the successful completion of the major recent contract on delivery of new Russian-made helicopters to a Russian commercial air carrier. The UTair company took delivery of the final, 40th, Mi-8AMT (Mi-171) at the Ulan-Ude Aviation Plant (UUAP, a division of the Russian Helicopters holding company) and sent it on to its duty station in the city of Tyumen. The deal was struck in 2007 and announced officially on 21 February 2008. The Tyumen-based carrier started accepting the first of the 40 Mi-8AMT and Mi-171 helicopters in October 2008. In 2009, the aircraft fleet was beefed up with 15 helicopters of the type, and the deal has been finalised this year ahead of schedule. “We are completing a very important contract on delivery of 40

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Rostvertol PLC

contracts and deliveries | upgrade

MI-26T2 NEW-GENERATION RUSSIAN

HEAVYLIFTER A new Russian-made Mil Mi-26TC heavy-lift transport helicopter went to China on 12 October. Chinese company Lectern Aviation Supplies Co. Ltd. had ordered it in March this year. The helicopter had been developed by Mil Moscow Helicopter Plant and manufactured by Rostvertol JSC. It is the third machine of the type, bought by the People’s Republic of China over the past three years. Venezuela has acquired three aircraft of the type recently, and Russian Emergencies Minister Sergey Shoigu voiced his plans for procuring five more new Mi-26s following the forest fires that raged in Russia this summer. This is an indication that the Mi-26, the world’s largest and heavy-lift-capable production-standard helicopter, remains in demand on the global market. Its appeal to potential customers is to grow even more owing to the machine’s upgrade programme being held jointly by the Mil design bureau and Rostvertol plant under the Mi-26T2 programme.

Mi-26TC in China The negotiations with the People’s Republic of China on their buying Russianbuilt Mi-26TC helicopters picked up after the Chinese had analysed the operation of a helicopter leased by China for use as part of its natural disaster relief operation in the wake of the disastrous earthquake in Sichuan province. This Mi-26TC was brought to Chinese company China Flying Dragon Special Aviation in September 2007. Chinese experts recognised the capabilities of the Russian helicopter operating in the foothill environment as extremely successful and effective. The terrible 8-magnitude earthquake snuffed up over 65,000 lives and injured upwards of 360,000 people, with at least 23,000 missed. However, the number of victims could have been greater, because a mountain range’s break-up and caving into a river caused the level of water in the river to rise by

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35 m, threatening a densely populated area in the province with flooding. Special equipment, including the leased Russian Mi-26TC helicopter, were deployed by an order of the Chinese government to the disaster-stricken area to conduct a disaster relief operation and prevent further loss of life. On 20 May 2008, the crew flying the Mi-26TC evacuated on a single day more than 230 people, the population of a whole village threatened by a flood. At the same time, the machine hauled rescue equipment and essential items. The crew also was tasked with bringing special equipment to areas hit by rubble to conduct earth-moving operations. The first of construction vehicles was lowered with pinpoint accuracy to a spot measuring merely 4.5x3 m. Then the spot doubled in size, and work accelerated. Operating hand in glove with the People’s Liberation Army, the Mi-26TC hauled 15 engineer vehicles in

limited visibility conditions on a single day, with the vehicles weighing more than 200 t in total. It airlifted 18 engineer vehicles more on the next day, with their total weight standing at about 300 t. Having appreciated the strengths of the unique helicopter shown on all Chinese TV channels, the customer in late May 2008 decided to buy the leased Mi-26TC out ahead of schedule. The aircraft was given Chinese registration number B-7802. Soon, talks kicked off on acquisition additional helicopters of the type as well as joint development and production of heavy-lift helicopters tailored to the requirements of Chinese customers. A contract on delivery of a second Mi-26TC to China was signed in November 2008 during Airshow China 2008. July 2009 saw the aircraft serialled B-7803 delivered to Qindao Helicopters Special Aviation Co. That has used it with success on fire-fighting and disaster relief operations ever since. A third Mi-26TC (serialled B-7807), which had been built by Rostvertol this summer, flew on its own to China very recently, on 14 October this year, three months ahead of schedule set by the contract. Chinese company Lectern Aviation Supplies had ordered the machine. China is going to buy another aircraft of the type in the near future, with the 2008 www.take-off.ru


contracts and deliveries | upgrade

contract making provision for seven Mi-26TC options.

Advanced capabilities of Mi-26T2 Russian heavy-lift Mi-26, which first flew on 14 December 1977, revolutionised rotorcraft building in its day by setting new heavy-lift helicopter standards. It was able to carry up to 80 troops in combat gear or 60 casualties on stretchers, or cargo weighing up to 20 t in its cargo cabin or on the external sling. Its US rivals have been unable to beat it at this yet. A graphic proof of the superiority of the Russian machine over its US competition is the widely known facts of history of the combat operations in Afghanistan, when the Mi-26’s services had to be resorted to so as US Chinooks downed in mountainous areas can be recovered. Isn’t this the best advertisewww.take-off.ru

ment for the aircraft developed by the Mil design bureau? However, to remain on the cutting edge of technological progress and meet the requirements of potential customer in a better manner, Mil kicked off heavy upgrade of the Mi-26 six years ago, paying for it out of pocket. The upgraded helicopter was designated as Mi-26T2. Its key features will include the round-the-clock operation capability, advanced digital avionics allowing a crew reduction down to two pilots, and uprated engines. The BREO-26 avionics suite of the Mi-26T2 upgrade is wrapped around the NPK-90-2 flight navigation system comprising a digital display system, control consoles, a digital computer, a satellite navigation system and a digital flight control system. In addition, the Mi-26T2’s

Andrey Fomin

MIL Moscow Helicopter Plant

Vladimir SCHERBAKOV

The second Mi-26TC delivered to China in 2009 demonstrates its fire-fighting capabilities with Bambi Bucket containing 15 t of water Left: the third Mi-26TC delivered to China in October 2010 Bottom: upgraded Mi-26T2 glass cockpit

avionics suite includes a day/night gyrostabilised surveillance optronic system, an up-to-date communications suite and an integral test system. Optional gear includes night-vision goggles. According to expert estimates, the BREO-26 avionics suite will boost the Mi-26T2’s reliability, flight safety, stability, controllability and hovering precision, the latter being especially important when using the external sling. Owing to its advanced avionics suite, the Mi-26T2 can fly round the clock in any weather and above sea surface. Another advantage of the machine is a reduction in mission planning time and in-flight workload on the crew owing, among other things, to automatic onboard systems health monitoring. The Mi-26T2 carries outsize cargo and vehicle weighing a total of 20 t both in its cargo cabin and on the external sling. Its military variant hauls 82 troops while its casevac version 60 casualties. The machine also can handle construction and erection work of take-off november 2010

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contracts and deliveries | upgrade Basic characteristics of Mi-26T2 heavy-lift helicopter Maximum takeoff weight, t

56.0

Maximum carrying capacity, t: - in cargo cabin

20.0

- on external sling

20.0

Speed, km/h: - maximum - cruising Service ceiling, m

295 255 4,600

Range, km: - on internal fuel - ferry, with external tanks

800 1,920 AI-136T

Takeoff power, hp

2x11,400

militaryphotos.net

Engines

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take-off november 2010

Rostvertol-avia’s Mi-26T carries BMD-3 airborne infantry combat vehicle Left: CH-47 Chinook recovery operation by a Mi-26T of Vertical-T company, Afghanistan, October 2009

Stallion. They are unable to carry all of the materiel in service with the militaries of the NATO members. With its carrying capacity of 20 t, the Mi-26T2 remains unchallenged, given that the lifting capacity of the upgraded CH-47F being fielded with the US Army and several other armies is up to 13 t and that of the CH-53K designed mostly for the US Marine Corps stands at 16 t.

Rostvertol PLC

various degrees of complexity, fire fighting, quick fuel delivery with on-the-ground refuelling of vehicles, etc. Certainly, the upgraded Mi-26T2 heavy-lift helicopter has bright vistas not only in Russia, but also on the international market where interest in rotary-wing heavylifters remains keen. The Russian-made Mi-26T2 will retain its edge over its foreign competition in terms of a number of basic characteristics, in the first place, maximum carrying capacity and heavily-laden range. For this reason, analysts foresee interest in the Mi-26T2 advanced heavy-lift helicopter on the part of countries from all over the world, including European NATO members whose defence need in an advanced heavy-lift helicopter will never be met even by upgraded US CH-47F Chinook and CH-53K Super

There is a lot of work for the future Mi-26T2 in Asia, Africa and the Middle East as well, of them being traditional Russian aircraft markets. This indicates a niche for the advanced Russian all-weather day/night heavy-lift helicopter meeting the most stringent requirements. The first Mi-26T2 is in the final stages of preparations for its flight trials and is due in the air any time soon. www.take-off.ru


United Engine Corporation (UEC) is the leading Russian industrial group in production of engines for aviation, launch vehicles, electric energy sector and gas pumping.

United Engine Corporation is a part and a subsidiary of United Industrial Corporation Oboronprom. UEC integrated more than 80% of assets of the Russian aviation engine-building industry.


industry | news

Andrey Fomin

The certification programme of the advanced Sukhoi Superjet 100 regional airliner is nearing its completion: the IAC Aircraft Register is expected to issue its type certificate before year-end when the launch customers, Aeroflot and Armavia, could receive the first production aircraft of the type. As is known, a cause of delay in the certification has been the delay in deliveries of advanced RussianFrench SaM146 turbofan engines. However, by the middle of the year, there had been a number of most important events supposed to facilitate a resolution of the problem. The engine certification trials were completed in May, and EASA issued the engine’s developer, Powerjet, with the type certificate for the SaM146. It took the Russian aviation authorities another month and a half to recognise the European type certificate, with the Aircraft Registry of the Interstate Aviation Committee (IAC) of the Commonwealth of Independent States. The SaM146’s having been certificated as compliant with the EU and Russian airworthiness standards enables the engine to be operated on aircraft flying in Russia, the European Union and the CIS. NPO Saturn Deputy Managing Director and SaM146 programme manager Yury Basyuk noted in this connection that an aircraft and an engine have been ‘cross-

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certificated’ for the first time, with the engine first obtaining an EASA certificate that, in turn is approved by the IAC Aircraft Registry under the bilateral EASA–IAC Aircraft Registry agreement on mutual recognition of the norms and airworthiness requirements. It is not necessary to conduct additional tests and submit additional data about the engine in case of such a certification. A huge and very important milestone – proving the SaM146’s safety and reliability – has been passed, with the Russian and EU certificates serving a proof. Thus, the key task the engine developer facing is launching the engine’s production and deliveries to power production aircraft. NPO Saturn managed to prepare the two first productionstandard SaM146s for shipping to Komsomolsk-on-Amur in late August. One of them was shipped on 24 August and the other followed on 30 August. The two were mounted on the first production SSJ100 (c/n 95007). “The virtual design methods adopted by NPO Saturn had allowed the launching manufacture of parts for production SaM146 engines long before the type certificate was issued”, says Yury Basyuk. “Now, we have a backlog of parts for 50 engines. Our current priority is to speed up the output”. NPO Saturn plans to deliver 13 production-stand-

Andrey Fomin

Superjet’s certification programme nearing completion

ard SaM146 engines before yearend – 12 to be installed on planes and one to be kept as a backup. Under the prototype aircraft certification programme, SSJ100 c/n 95004 flew to Italy on 25 August for the first time to undergo a number of tests to gauge its noise level and influence of the strong electromagnetic fields at Levaldigi and Torino airports. The SSJ100 wrapped up its static load strength test programme, part of its certification programme, at TsAGI in Zhukovsky. “The completion of the static test programme is an important milestone of the SSJ100 certification programme”, Sukhoi Civil Aircraft Company President Vladimir Prisyazhnyuk said in this connection. “Along with the static tests, we also have successfully performed the flight programme designed to prove the strength characteristics. The tests have proved the param-

eters the certification requires. The prototype aircraft have logged 2,072 hours on 842 flights to date”. Several new Superjet 100 contracts and agreements were awarded this summer. At the recent Farnborough air show, SCAC landed a firm order from Indonesian carrier Kartika Airlines for 30 SSJ100 airliners to be delivered during 2012 through 2015. On the next day, Orient Thai Airlines ordered 12 Superjets with 12 options. Russian customers did not sit on their hands either, with Gazpromavia signing a letter of intent for 10 Superjets. Another deal was clinched by Russian-Italian company Superjet International that managed to sell 30 aircraft with 15 options to the Pearl Aircraft leasing company. The baseline SSJ100’s list price under the contracts and agreements signed in Farnborough was about $31.7 million. It is obvious, however, that discounts of this kind of another were offered to most of the buyers. SCAC President Vladimir Prisyazhnyuk said in Farnborough that as many as 131 SSJ100 aircraft had been firmly ordered from his company. Another agreement was made in September when Russo-Italian joint venture Superjet International and US leasing company Willis Lease Finance Corporation agreed on delivery of six 98-seat SSJ100/95LR planes to kick off in September 2012 with four options. The list-priced deal is estimated at $300 million. There had been six early production-standard SSJ100s sitting in SCAC’s final assembly shop, with as many as 18 production-standard aircraft being in various stages of construction altogether.

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industry | news

The first prototype of the upgraded Tupolev Tu-204SM (c/n 64150) medium-haul airliner is in the final stages of assembly at the AviastarSP plant in Ulyanovsk and is expected to perform its maiden mission and enter its certification tests in November. In July, the Perm Engine Company shipped the first set of two production-standard PS-90A2 turbofan engines that had been mounted on Tu-204SM c/n 64150 by the midmonth. Meanwhile, Aviastar-SP continues the assembly of the second prototype of the upgraded airliner (c/n 64151), with the third example (c/n 64152) being in the final assembly shop also. The Tu-204SM upgrade differs considerably from the production Tu-204-100 earlier built by Aviastar. Firstly, it will be powered by the 16,000-kgf PS-90A2 engines developed in Perm with the assistance of US company Pratt&Whitney (they got their IAC Aviation Registry type certificate in December 2009). Unlike the production PS-90A, the modified engine is equipped with an advanced high-pressure turbine, new FADEC and features several other considerable improvements, which enables it to meet presentday international airworthiness and environment protection require-

Dmitry Kanunnikov

Tu-204SM gearing up for its maiden flight

ments. At the same time, a considerable reduction in its life-cycle cost and an increase in its reliability have been achieved. The Tu-204SM also uses the advanced Aerosila TA18-200 auxiliary power unit (APU). To reduce the empty weight, a number of improvements in design, advanced materials and lighter and more up-to-date avionics systems are being introduced. In particular, provision has been made for using elevators, rudders and wing high-lift devices made out of carbon-filled plastic composites from Hexcel, a lightweight landing gear from Aviaagregat (Samara) and a more sophisticated digital control air conditioning system. The flying crew has been reduced from three to two by cutting the

flight engineer, which became feasible owing to a substantial upgrade of the avionics. The aircraft is fitted with the advanced KSEIS-204E integrated display and warning system and VSUPT-85-204 fight management and thrust control computer system, with all control consoles on the flightdeck redesigned. The modernised avionics has allowed implementation of new automatic control modes, particularly, Category IIIA automatic landing approach (the Tu-204-100’s avionics ensured the Category II automatic landing approach capability only), director takeoff, etc. Advanced miniyokes have been installed on the flightdeck. Aircraft weight reduction is also facilitated by upgrade of the power

supply system and lighting equipment, with glow lamps in taxi lights and landing lamps are replaced with light-emitting diodes and xenon lamps. Owing to the modifications, the empty weight is to drop from 60 t to 58 t, while the maximum takeoff and landing weights are to increase from 103 t to 105 t and from 88 t to 89.5 t, respectively. The Tu-204SM’s assigned life is to up to from 60,000 hours, 30,000 landings and 25 operating years (those of the current Tu-204-100 stand at 45,000 hours, 25,000 landings and 20 operating years, respectively). The Tu-204SM certification tests are slated to be completed in 2011 when production airliner deliveries to launch customers could begin.

First production An-70 could be completed in 2011

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five years, including two in 2013, four in 2014 and five in 2015. However, the rollout of the early production-standard An-70s should be preceded by the plane’s substantial upgrade since the An-70 prototype (c/n 01-02), which is now in trials, first flew as far back as 1997. In particular, plans provide for upgrading the D-27 propfan engines, avionics suite and fly-by-wire control system and introducing an advanced auxiliary power unit (APU), a modern glass digital cockpit and a cutting-edge radar system. The aircrew is to be slashed down to four.

The upgraded An-70 will haul 35 t of cargo out to 5,100 km or 47 t if overloaded at a distance of 3,000 km. Antonov also is

working on a commercial version of the aircraft, the An-70-100, which is to have the same lifting capacity.

Sergey Popsuevich

At the Aviasvit XXI show in Kiev in late September and early October, near-term plans were announced for series production of the advanced An-70 medium airlifter by the Antonov production plant (the former Aviant plant in Kiev). The company has for several years been manufacturing the first two production-standard An-70s ordered by the Ukrainian Defence Ministry. It was reported during the show that the launch aircraft (c/n 01-03) might be completed in 2011 and the second one (c/n 01-04) in 2012. Overall, Antonov is intent on making 13 production An-70s in the coming

take-off november 2010

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industry | news

Russian-built Il-76: maiden flight in one year Tu-204-family aircraft is being done and Antonov An-124 Ruslans are being overhauled, the aircraft 476 final assembly workshop is situated in a separate fenced area where unorthodox aircraft – thermoplanes – were supposed to be built in the late 1980s and ‘90s. Now, the area contains the airframe of a former Belarusian Il-76 write-off used now as a mock-up for devising and honing all-digital design documentation and jig manufacture. A radical difference between the aircraft 476 and TAPC-made Il-76 is to be a new wing design featuring long single-piece wing panels (the older ones had a joint between the middle and detachable parts of the wing) and stringer set riveting while lacking the middle wing spar in the wing box. The designers believe the measures are to slash the weight of the aircraft considerably. Just as some of the latest versions of the TAPC-made

Il-76, the aircraft to be built in Ulyanovsk are to be powered by PS-90A-76 engines from the Perm Engine Company. They will mount an up-to-date avionics suite, with the aircrew to have access to the information displayed on six 6x8inch multifunction displays. “The plant’s future is hinged on the successful implementation of the Il-476 programme. Efforts to expedite the pace of the programme are being mulled over. A schedule has been approved, under which the deadline for the maiden flight of the first Il-476 is October 2011”, Aviastar-SP Director General Sergey Dementyev said in late May this year. The company plans to have a second aircraft designed for endurance tests follow the first prototype into existence. Sergey Dementyev added that the aircraft 476 production launch plan had been discussed and approved during Irkut Corp. Oleg

Demchenko’s visit to Aviastar-SP: “A launch customer was selected tentatively, too. Manufacture of the first three productionstandard aircraft sets is planned to commence in the later half of this year”. The military transport version of the aircraft 476 will get Il-76MD-90A designation while the commercial ones will be known as Il-76TD-90A.

Dmitry Kanunnikov

Following the July 2010 decision by the Russian Defence Ministry to suspend the work on the Il-112V advanced light tactical airlifter at the VASO plant in Voronezh, the main Russian airlifter programme is now the productionising of the deeply upgraded Il-76 transport plane by the Ulyanovsk-based Aviastar-SP close corporation under Project 476. The holding frames for assembly of fuselage panels and sections of the advanced aircraft are situated in the unit assembly workshop of the plant. As of summer this year, the wing assembly jigs were being made, and a decision was taken to order some of the components of early aircraft (e.g. empennage, wing panels, wing high-lift devices, etc.) from the Tashkentbased TAPC Corp. to speed up the construction of the aircraft in Ulyanovsk. Instead of the main final assembly facility where work on the Tupolev Tu-204SM and other

Ka-52 enters production in Arsenyev

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work. In addition, four Ka-52s have been completed, considering individual completed technological cycles,” the return reads. The three low-rate initial production Ka-52s serialled 51, 52 and 53 kicked off their official trials late last year, with the trials being conducted jointly by Kamov and Defence Ministry personnel. The machines could be seen in the course of the preparations for and conduct of the 9 May Victory Day parade in Moscow this spring.

Establishing an advanced foundry wrapped around sophisticated Italian equipment has been important to the plant. Under the Progress technical renovation programme being run by Russian Helicopters, the plant’s upgraded foundry facilities have been pooled in a spacious workshop fitted with Russia’s only Italian-made integrated mechanised line to make aluminium, magnesium and cast-iron/steel patterns and castings. The advanced technology

allows an increase in the precision of castings and an improvement in their physical characteristics and ensures manufacture of magnesium, aluminium, steel and cast iron patterns with the use of the same equipment. Owing to the introduction of the advanced equipment, Progress will launch production of main and accessory gearbox cases not only for Progress-built Ka-52s but for other helicopters as well.

Yevgeny Yerokhin

On 31 August and 1 September this year, the Progress company in the town of Arsenyev (a subsidiary of the Russian Helicopters holding company) hosted the ceremony of launching the production of the cutting-edge Kamov Ka-52 combat helicopters and starting a new foundry. Progress Managing Director Yury Denisenko told the media that the Russian Defence Ministry had ordered the production-standard Ka-52 late last year: “Much time was spent on the preparations, but the difficulties have been overcome. We have been ordered a batch of about 30 machines that we will manufacture within four years”. According to the 2009 annual return published by the company at its official Web site, Progress built 10 Kamov helicopters: “Three Ka-50 helicopters have been delivered, including the earlier-made and paid-for end items. Three Ka-52 helicopters have been completed, considering the earlier-performed

www.take-off.ru


industry | news

Be-200 certificated in Europe, with new orders awarded

The 8th Gidroaviasalon hydroaviation international show and scientific conference took place on the premises of the test facility of the Beriev company in Gelenjik and newly-inaugurated Gelenjik airport between 9 and 12 September. The key participants in the event were, probably, Be-200ChS amphibians that have become kind of the stars of the struggle against forest fires ravaging Russia this summer. The interest in the Be-200ChS is kept on the boil due to the amphibian having also become the character of the business segment of the show. On the very first day of Gidroaviasalon 2010, the ceremony of signing a precontract agreement on delivery eight more aircraft of the type to the Russian Emergencies Ministry took place. The agreement was signed by Beriev Director General – Designer General Victor Kobzev and Rafail Zakirov, chief of the Russian Emergencies Ministry Aviation and Aviation Rescue Technologies Department. UAC President Alexey Fyodorov, who attended the ceremony, said that the deliveries under the deal, which value is estimated at 10 billion rubles, were to kick off the next year and the parties were to have signed a firm order until year-end 2010. First, the Russian Emergencies Ministry in 2011 will accept two Be-200ChS amphibians (c/n 03-01 and 03-02) made by Irkut Corp.’s Irkutsk Aircraft Plant. Aircraft c/n 03-01 completed its maiden flight in July this year and is in Taganrog at present soon to be followed by c/n 03-02. Beriev will fit the two amphibians with a number

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Alexey Mikheyev

Alexey Mikheyev

ted its IAC Aircraft Registry validation request to EASA as far back as 22 July 2005, and the IAC Aircraft Registry and EASA struck a working agreement on the Be-200ES-E programme. Upwards of 130 working meetings were held between 2006 and May 2010, attended by EASA, IAC Aircraft Registry and Beriev experts. In the course of the Be-200ES-E validation, EASA experts laid down several more requirements. This

off additional ddi i l systems prior i to their h i delivery. The remaining six aircraft will be assembled in Taganrog. According to Alexey Fyodorov, the first Berievassembled production-standard Be-200ChS could emerge in 2012. At present, productionising is in full swing, and all relevant assembly tooling had been brought from Irkutsk to Taganrog. At the same time, Beriev and its subcontractors supplying components of Emergency Ministryordered Be-200ChS amphibians signed pre-contractual agreements during the Gidroaviasalon 2010 show, on 9 September. The agreements in question were signed with Motor Sich JSC for D-436TP engines, NIIAO for the avionics suite, NPO Nauka for air conditioning systems, Rodina for control system servos, Gidromash for landing gear, ELARA for the fly-by-wire control system, Teploobmennik for valves, Kristall for the turbine pump system, Pribor for instrumentation and

BetaIr for the on-board cable netBet work and electric switchgear. wor Next, another stirring event for N the designers of the Be-200ChS took place on the very first day of the show: a ceremony, in which an EU limited category type certificate was issued to the Be-200ES-E amphibian was held on 9 September. The type certificate was handed in to Beriev head Victor Kobzev by Henri Wildigans, manager of the certification project (large airplane department) of EASA. Simultaneously, the Interstate Aviation Committee’s (IAC) Aircraft Registry Director General Alexander Donchenko handed the developer with the IAC Aircraft Registry supplemental type certificate for the Be-200ChS amphibian featuring cockpit inscriptions in English. The EASA type certificate resulted from the hard work of Beriev designers and engineers who had to display the best of their professionalism and expertise. Personnel of the Interstate Aviation Committee (IAC) took a proactive part in the work. The type certificate issuance had been anticipated for a long time. Beriev submit-

led to an alteration of the standard design of the Be-200ChS and determined the deadline of the final validation of the amphibian. Mention should be made that, unlike other Russian aircraft being certifying by EASA earlier (Tupolev Tu-204CE, Sukhoi Superjet 100), the Be-200ES-E amphibian is fitted mostly with Russian-made equipment and Ukrainian-made engines. The issues of qualifying the Russian-made equipment prompted a most heated discussion during the Be-200ES-E validation. Tackling the issues required both considerable efforts on the part of the amphibian’s designers and active participation of avionics developers in the resolution of the problems. Owing to the hard cooperative work of the IAC Aircraft Registry, EASA, Beriev and avionics developers, the programme on proving the Be-200ES-E’s compliance with the European airworthiness standards has been completed with success this year. No doubt, the EASA type certificate will enhance the competitiveness of the Be-200ES-E amphibian on the global market.

take-off november 2010

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industry | news

Alexey Mikheyev

The Kazan Helicopters JSC marked its 70th anniversary on 10 September 2010. An air show was timed to the event, with Mi-8MTV-5, Mi-17-V5 and Ansat helicopters performing in it. However, the key surprise to the guests of the celebration was at the static display area, where the second prototype of the advanced Mil Mi-38 medium transport helicopter, dubbed OP-2, was unveiled. Kazan Helicopters had completed the construction of the aircraft (registration number RA-38012) in the run-up to the jubilee, in August, after which it was rolled out, and ground tests of the airborne equipment commenced. The prototype is expected to conduct its first flight this autumn. For the first time, the helicopter is fitted with the advanced IKBO38 integrated avionics suite from the Tranzas company, with its key components commonised with the IKBO-17 avionics suite designed for upgraded Mi-17 helicopters. Commonality allows optimisation of operation and overhaul and makes it easier for aircrews to convert to the new helicopter type. The IKBO-38 suite ensures round-the-clock flight operations in various geographic and climatic environments in the automatic, director and manual control modes. It features a modular open architecture and comprises five new-generation 12.1-inch TDS-12 multifunction displays showing all relevant flight and navigation data, state of the helicopter equipment,

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Ildar Valeyev

Kazan Helicopters rolled out second Mi-38

digital terrain map and imagery from the 38A-813 weather radar. In addition, the suite comprises the TNC-1G redundant helicopter navigation computer system with an inbuilt GLONASS/GPS receiver, as well as a mapping server, an airborne system and engine data collection and monitoring system, the TTA-12N terrain awareness and warning system and up-to-date radar and communications equipment. The SVS collimating synthetic-imagery headup display system is optional. The suite’s open architecture allows the use of additional radar and electrooptical equipment and introduction of advanced information display modes.

The second Mi-38 prototype is powered by a pair of Canadianmade PW127/5 turboshaft engines just like the first prototype, OP-1 (reg. number RA-38011), did when it logged a total of 86 flights in 2002–2008 under the factory flight development test programme. Meanwhile, the third prototype, OP-3, which is being assembled by Kazan Helicopters, is planned to be powered by a pair of Russianbuilt Klimov TV7-117V engines, also known as VK-3000. The use of more powerful Russian-made engines will increase the Mi-38’s maximum takeoff weight up to 16,200 kg (the first Mi-38 powered by PW127/5 prototypes had a maximum takeoff weight of 15,600 kg) and its maximum payload up to 6,000 kg in the cabin and 7,000 kg under-slung. Having the 14,200-kg normal takeoff weight, the helicopter will have a maximum speed of 310 km/h, a cruising speed of 285 km/h, a static ceiling 3,840 m and a dynamic ceiling of 6,400 m. The flight range on a 30-min fuel reserve will account for 880 km and that without the fuel reserve will be 1,000 km. The time when the third Mi-38 kicks off its trials depends on the preparedness of the Klimov company to supply

Kazan Helicopters with a set of airworthy TV7-117V engines. This is expected so far to take place in 2011. The OP-3’s airframe is at a very high degree of completion, with the second IKBO-38 having been ordered from Tranzas for it. It was announced at the HeliRussia 2009 show that the Mi-38 certification programme was planned to be completed in 2014, after which the helicopter can enter full-rate production and deliveries. The certification tests are expected now to begin in 2011 at first with the use of the second prototype powered by the Canadian engines after a small series of flights under the in-house programme. Then the third prototype powered by TV7-117Vs will joint the trials. Whether the first Mi-38 prototype takes part in the certification test programme or not depends on the feasibility of buying a second set of Canadian engines from Pratt&Whitney (as is known, the company provided the first set for free). So far, the machine sits in Mil Moscow Helicopter Plant’s workshop in Panki (Moscow Region) in a semiassembled state following the completion of the factory tests more than a year ago.

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industry | company and other passenger and cargo aircraft powered by cruise engines of D-436 family. It is intended to start cruise engines and supply compressed air and electric power to airplane onboard systems, with cruise engines inoperative. High AI-450-MS AGTE efficiency is attained through low specific fuel consumption that is a result of high thermodynamic cycle parameters, high efficiency of subassemblies, as well as a result of selecting air bleed from an ancillary compressor; and through low operation costs. Currently, efforts are undertaken to develop An-158 99-passenger airplane derived from An-148 regional jet with its maiden flight performed on 28 April 2010, An-168 corporate

of Mi-2 helicopter fleet opens good prospects for AI-450M engine manufacture, with re-motorising a substantial part of the fleet being profitable. To increase helicopter performance and operational efficiency when operating at higher altitudes and higher temperatures, Motor Sich JSC has developed a new TV3-117VMA-SBM1V helicopter engine that possesses extended life limits: time before the first overhaul and time between overhauls (TBO) are 4,000 hours/cycles, total life is 12,000 hours/cycles. TV3-117VMA-SBM1V engine has the same weight and dimensions, overall and fitting to fit the engine to helicopter fitting D-436-148

Vyacheslav BOGUSLAYEV Chairman of the Board, Motor Sich JSC Motor Sich JSC trade mark is a symbol of cost-effective, reliable, and competitive products that are a part and parcel of aviation industry of Ukraine. The company offers state-of-the-art multipurpose aero engines operated all over the world in more than 120 countries. To expand its presence in the market of aeronautical propulsion systems, Motor Sich JSC is undertaking efforts to develop and commercialise manufacture of a variety of new promising aero engines and to upgrade commercial ones, with D-436-148, AI-450-MS, AI-450M, TV3-117VMA-SBM1V and MS-500V among them.

An-148

MOTOR SICH ENGINES FROM SMALL UAVs TO HEAVY LIFTERS D-436-148 engine has been developed around the best design solutions; it is intended for An-148 passenger family airplanes. An extensive package of design-and-research works related to the engine combustion chamber and enhancement of engine acoustic performance make it possible to provide emission and noise levels substantially lower than ICAO standards. In terms of its performance, this commercially manufactured engine is as good as its foreign competitor products being developed currently. Motor Sich JSC has developed AI-450-MS two-shaft auxiliary gas turbine engine (AGTE) for various An-148 modifications

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aircraft with its range being up to 7,000 km, cargo and military-cargo aircraft able to carry 20 t of cargo to a distance of up to 2,000 km or 15 t to a distance of 3,200 km. The company pays great attention to manufacturing engines for utility helicopters. AI-450 is the smallest helicopter engine developed by Motor Sich JSC along with Ivchenko-Progress design bureau. Various engine modifications can provide takeoff power at the range of 370 to 730 hp. AI-450M engine modification is intended to re-motorise Mi-2 helicopters previously manufactured, wherein it is to replace GTD-350 gas turbine engine. We hope that a huge world commercial

points, like the engines that power Mi and Ka helicopters. TV3-117VMA-SBM1V series 1 engine modification with FADEC automatic control system is developed for new helicopter projects. Using this automatic control system will result in further enhancement of engine and helicopter performances. Upgraded Mi-24 helicopter powered by TV3-117VMA-SBM1V engines has been introduced into service by the Ministry of Defence of Ukraine. Mi-24 helicopter powered by TV3-117VMA-SBM1V engines showed record rate of climb earlier in the course of previous tests: it climbed at the altiwww.take-off.ru


п р о м ы iшn лd еu нs нt rо yс т | ь c |o mи pт оa nг иy tude of 5 km for 9 minutes only, which means 2.5-time increase in rate of climb. On 19 May 2010, Mi-8MTV helicopter powered by TV3-117VMA-SBM1V engines took off from the airfield of Konotop aircraft repair and overhaul plant. The helicopter climbed to the altitude of 8,100 m for 13 seconds in the course of tests, with the world’s record set up. Taking into consideration changes of the world helicopter market conditions, the company is undertaking efforts to develop a new generation of MS-500V family engines of 600–1,000 hp power class, which are intended for utility helicopters whose take off weight is 3.5-6 t. As experts predict, the market sector of this class helicopters is going to be one of the most promising one in the coming up years due to helicopter versatility. A leading version of MS-500V model line is going to be an engine of takeoff power of 630 hp designed according to requirements specification by Kazan Helicopters JSC for Ansat type helicopter. Simple and effective design of MS-500V family engine is typical for engines of this class currently available. The core engine includes a one-step centrifugal compressor with high compression ratio, an annular reverse flow combustor, and a one-step turbine. Power developed by the one-step free turbine is transmitted to the main helicopter reduction gear through an integrated intermediate reduction gear. The engine possesses an advanced electronic control and monitoring system with hydromechanical redundancy. Currently, development efforts are undertaken by Ivchenko-Progress design bureau within AI-8000V engine project that is to be implemented along with Motor Sich JSC.

AI-136T

Mi-26T The engine power is 8,250 hp at takeoff power setting and 9,300 hp at emergency power setting. The engine is intended for heavy cargo helicopters and utility helicopters of Mi-46 type. D-136 engine is the largest helicopter engine by Motor Sich JSC. It provides power of 11,400 hp at takeoff power setting at environment temperature of 15°С and it has an unrivalled position in the world in terms of this parameter. D-136 engine is operated at Mi-26, the world’s largest heavy-lift helicopter. Currently, Ivchenko-Progress design bureau is designing D-136 engine upgrade project. A new engine has been designated AI-136T1, and it is to provide power of 11,650 hp at maximum takeoff power setting; the power specified is to be kept up to envi-

Mi-24

TV3-117VMA-SBM1V

www.take-off.ru

commercial

ronment temperature of 50°С. Emergency power setting has been introduced to provide power of 12,500 hp. AI-136T1 engine is intended to upgrade Mi-26 helicopters and to power new heavy-lift helicopters. A wide range of helicopter engines manufactured and prospective ones makes it possible to implement virtually any project of developing a new helicopter or re-motorising the ones available. Developing multipurpose unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) is considered one of the most prospective trends in the development of military aviation. Motor Sich JSC manufactured engines make it possible to develop UAVs and missiles of various types and purposes: from small UAVs powered by MS-100 engine to unmanned combat air vehicles (UCAVs) powered by versions of AI-25TL and AI-222 engine families, as well as strategic UAVs powered by AI-22 type engines. To summarise, it is pertinent to say that aeronautical propulsion industry of Ukrain can offer a wide range of engines that meet requirements of the international regulations. Developed and introduced by Motor Sich JSC, its advanced technical and design solutions are based on state-of-the-art achievements of science and technology. Close collaboration with designers and multiple partners allows the company to develop engines that assure the future of air transport. Motor Sich JSC 15, Motorostroiteley av. Zaporozhye 69068, Ukraine Tel.: +38 (061) 720-48-14 Fax: +38 (061) 720-50-05 E-mail: motor@motorsich.com, eo.vtf@motorsich.com http://www.motorsich.com

take-off november 2010

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Sukhoi PAK FA fifth generation fighter

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UVS TECH 2011

LAAD 2011

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www.aeroindia.in

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MAKS-2011

Dubai Airshow 2011

LIMA ‘11

www.aviasalon.com

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www.lima.com.my


Piotr Butowski

commercial aviation | programme

An-148

production grows up The advanced Antonov An-148 regional jet airliner, which operation Ukrainian and Russian air carriers launched last year, became a head-turner of the Aviasvit XXI international air show held in Kiev in late September and early October. Several new agreements for delivery of production-standard An-148s to Ukrainian air companies were signed during the air show. The An-148’s 99-seat stretch, the An-158 regional jet, made its debut at the show. It had performed its maiden flight in April and had been unveiled in Farnborough in July. In addition, some details were given about other latest versions in the An-148 family during Aviasvit XXI, including information about the ramp-fitted An-178 medium freighter being developed by Antonov. Meanwhile, there also have been important developments under the programme of the An-148’s production in Russia by VASO in Voronezh. The six production-standard An-148-100Bs under the contract have been made for the launch customer, the Rossiya state-owned transport company. The fifth aircraft launched operations late in August, and the sixth one was prepared for delivery in November. These aircraft are leased by the major Russian commercial aircraft lessor, Ilyushin Finance Co. VASO is completing two An-148s under its first export contract made with Myanmar. In addition, work is under way on planes for the Polyot airline and Rossiya special flight detachment. There also has been change to the management of the programme on building Russian An-148s. While the leasing company Ilyushin Finance Co. had played a leading part there, being funding their manufacturing at VASO, the Irkut corporation has become the coordinator of the programme recently. Irkut is serving the basis for establishing UAC – Commercial Planes, a division of the United Aircraft Corporation. Irkut has become the managing company running the programme while Ilyushin Finance Co. remained the main leasing company for Russian and foreign air carriers.

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take-off november 2010

An-148 in Ukrainian skies…

Scheduled commercial services of the An-148 in Ukraine kicked off on 2 June 2009. Following relevant improvements, the Aerosvit airline launched passenger operations of the first prototype (UR-NTA, c/n 01-01) in cooperation with Antonov Airlines. The first production An-148-100B (UR-NTC, c/n 01-09) built by the Kiev-based Antonov aircraft plant (formerly Aviant) this spring, joined it on 21 May this year. In addition to services in Ukraine and to Moscow, Aerosvit’s two An-148s fly to several European cities, particularly Tbilisi, Riga, Belgrade, Warsaw, Budapest, Sofia, Stockholm, Athens and Geneva. Some of the results produced after the first year of the An-148’s operation by Ukrainian air carriers were referred to during a press conference at the Aviasvit XXI air show. They had carried about 74,000 passengers on 1,800 flights by September this year. The aircraft of the type are said to have displayed good reliability. For instance, while in 2009 the Boeing 737-200s in service with Ukrainian air carriers www.take-off.ru


Alexey Mikheyev

commercial aviation | programme

The fifth production An-148-100B assembled by VASO plant in Voronezh was delivered to its customer, Rossiya airline, in late August 2010 Left: the first production An-148-100B assembled in Kiev this spring and An-158

Andrey FOMIN

had the 6.68-hour average time between failures and the Boeing 737-300/400/500s had that of 11.89 hours, the An-148’s average time between failures grew gradually from 11.57 hours during the initial period of operation (from 2 June to 31 October 2009) to 16.23 hours (from 1 November 2009 to 31 March 2010) and to 30.26 hours now (from 1 April to 15 September 2010). Having studied Aerosvit’s positive experience in operating the early An-148s, two more major Ukrainian airlines, Dnepravia in Dnepropetrovsk and Donbassaero in Donetsk, voiced their intent to use airliners of the type on their services. This resulted in several contracts on more An-148s for Ukrainian carriers signed during the air show, on 1 October. For instance, Antonov and Leasingtechtrans signed a contract of sale, while Antonov signed aircraft exchange contracts with Aerosvit, Donbassaero and Dnepravia. The contracts stipulate the delivery of seven An-148s, including the two already in service, until late 2011. Thus, Antonov has undertaken to deliver five new aircraft until the end of next year. The deal is to be made in the following manner: Leasingtechtrans buys the planes from Antonov and leases them to Antonov Airlines that uses them in cooperation with Aerosvit, www.take-off.ru

Dnepravia and Donbassavia, members of the Ukrainian Aviation Group alliance. In addition, Antonov and Leasingtechtrans on the same day signed a protocol of intent covering the sale of 10 more An-148s for other Ukrainian air companies. On 1 October, Antonov also signed agreement with the Ukraine state-owned air company that carries top national officials and is similar to Russia’s Rossiya special flight detachment. The agreement stipulates the sale of six An-148s, including two in the VIP configuration, during 2011–2012. To close the above deals and other contracts, Antonov unveiled an ambitious programme on full-scale An-148 and An-158 production by its Kiev-based plant. While the company’s 2010 business plan provides for making only three aircraft (most probably, the second production An-148-100B c/n 01-10 and being completed now, An-148 c/n 01-09 that has been delivered to the customer and An-158 c/n 01-02 prototype), the output is to grow to 9–10 aircraft in 2011, 13–15 in 2012 and 20–21 in 2013, with the plant to churn out 24 airliners of the type starting from 2014. Thus, Antonov plans to have 95 An-148s and An-158s to be assembled in Kiev between 2010 and 2015. In addition, the company will continue making components for Russianassembled An-148s; for instance, 12–15 wing panel sets are slated for production in 2010, 20–24 in 2011 and 29 in 2012, with the plant to supply VASO with 36 sets a year starting from 2013 to deliver a total of 172 wing panel sets during 2010–2015. An impressive number indeed! It is difficult, though, to believe in it, given the actual results produced by the former Aviant plant in terms of full-scale production of the An-148 by now. For these plans to become a reality there is a strong need of attraction of significant financial resources for aircraft manufacturing in Russia and Ukraine. IFC has a plan to open a

subsidiary leasing company in Ukraine which activities will include sales of Kiev-assembled An-148 and An-158. Besides IFC initiates a Russian and Ukrainian leasing companies’ pool which can help to attract necessary finances to production enterprises VASO in Voronezh and Antonov in Kiev. Overall, Antonov estimates the market for the An-148-100 at about 300 aircraft and that for the An-158 stretch at about 240. Antonov’s leader Dmitry Kiva said in Kiev that there had been 93 orders for the An-148 (probably, he meant both firm orders and various preliminary agreements and protocols of intent), including 78 aircraft from Russia, six aircraft ordered by Ukraine, two by Myanmar and seven by Kazakhstan. 36 aircraft more could be options (Ukraine and Russia – 10 each, Iran – 16). As to the An-158, Dmitry Kiva mentioned 20 orders in Russia (with IFC became the launch customer for ten aircraft) and 87 options that could go firm after the airliner has been certificated, which is anticipated to take place late this year. The options in question include five aircraft designed for Ukraine, six for Cuba, 12 for Russia and 64 for Iran. Actually, Iran can become a key customer for the Ukrainian An-148 and An-158, given the memorandum of understanding signed as far back as 31 October 2008, under which up to 80 aircraft of the types are to be delivered to Iranian carriers. Two of them are supposed to be leased, 18 more are to be delivered by Antonov’s plant in Kiev and the remaining 60 could be licence-produced by Iranian company HESA in Isfahan. The 80 airliners could include 16 standard-configuration An-148-100s and 64 An-158 stretches. Dmitry Kiva also spoke of the plans to promote the specialised VIP variant of the An-148, designated as An-168. It differs from the baseline model in both a special enhancedcomfort cabin layout for 14–19 seats and take-off november 2010

27


commercial aviation | programme

Andrey Fomin

An-158 (right) and the second production An-148-100B in the assembly hall of the Antonov production plant in Kiev

an extra fuel tank in the upper fuselage, extending the maximum range to 7,000 km. Antonov’s head estimated the An-168 market slice at 50 aircraft and mentioned 11 options already available – one from Bolivia and the rest from Russia.

…and in Russia

Andrey Fomin

Full-rate production of the An-148 in Russia continues in cooperation with Ukrainian companies, but the extent of locally-produced components is to increase. To date, VASO has productionised the whole of the An-148 fuselage (previously, F1 and F2 sections were supplied from Kiev) and wing centre section, empennage and a number of other components. Wing panel sets are brought from Kiev, landing gear from Dnepropetrovsk and

Another An-148-100B assembly at VASO plant in Voronezh

28

take-off november 2010

engines and APU from Zaporozhye. Some of the workload could be taken off VASO further down the line by transferring the wing centre section production to KAPO in Kazan and the F1 fuselage section to the Aviakor plant (Samara). VASO’s production programme provides for construction of eight production-standard An-148s this year, of which four have been built and three delivered as of late October. The output rate is to grow up to 16 aircraft in 2011 and account for 24 planes a year starting from 2012. Thus, a total of 120 productionstandard An-148s are to be made in Voronezh during 2010–2015, with as many to be built until year-end 2020. According to Ilyushin Finance Co. Director General Alexander Rubtsov, Russia alone

needs about 170 aircraft of the An-148 family now, which has been indicated by the existing contracts and preliminary agreements. Therefore, the output rate has to be increased to meet the demand. It is open secret that the delay in reaching the planned output rate is a main problem hindering the An-148 proliferation and the landing of more firm orders. The above plan of VASO’s An-148 production in 2010–2015 and until 2020 is grounded in Irkut’s forecast of delivering in the coming 10 years 240 An-148s to Russian air companies and governmental organisations and foreign customers as well. Now, there are contracts for six An-148-100Bs to be financially leased to the Rossiya stateowned transport company by Ilyushin Finance Co., four An-148-100B for Cuban Airlines (leased by IFC), two An-148-100Es to be delivered by UAC to the Myanmar Defence Ministry and two An-148 VIP jets to be delivered by UAC to the Rossiya special flight detachment under an order from the Presidential Administrative Office. In addition, Sberbank Leasing awarded 10 firm orders for An-148-100Es to be leased financially to the Polyot airline. The contract for six An-148s for the Rossiya state-owned transport company has virtually been fulfilled. The carrier took delivery of the fifth aircraft (RA-61705, c/n 40-07) on 23 August 2010, and the sixth plane (RA-61706, c/n 40-09) began its acceptance tests in September. Rossiya launched scheduled operations of its An-148-100B fleet on 21 December 2009. Four aircraft were being operated as of late October with every An-148 aircraft in service has 200 flight hours monthly on the average. www.take-off.ru


commercial aviation | programme

The construction of the two An-148s for Myanmar (presumably, c/n 41-01 and 41-03) is to be complete by VASO in November this year. Before year-end, the plant could assemble one more An-148 designed, probably, for the Polyot airline (completion of two aircraft c/n 41-04 and 41-06 was slated for December

www.take-off.ru

previously). “The company plans to launch An-148 operations in 2011”, Polyot Director General Anatoly Karpov said during the signature of the contract on 12 October. UAC’s news release dedicated to this mentions that “delivery of An-148 planes to the Polyot company will begin in March 2011, but the contract also provides for ahead-of-schedule deliveries as well”. According to Irkut’s 2010–2020 An-148 sales plan obtained by the Vedomosti daily, potential Russian customers for the airliner include such carriers, as Moscow Airlines (which could buy up to 30 aircraft), Vladivostok Avia (4), Cuban Airlines (4), Saravia (6), Moskovia (10), Angara (2), Grozny-Avia (2), Kolavia (4), Taimyr (10), Krasavia (15), Dagestan Airlines (15), etc. In addition, Sergey Belov, Director General of the Rossiya state-owned transport company, said during the air show in Kiev that his company was intent on exercising its nine An-148 options in the future. The Defence Ministry, Emergencies Ministry, Ministry of Interior, and Aviation Department of the Federal Security Service could be among Russia’s governmental customers for the An-148. The Presidential Administrative Office may buy more planes of the type. As of the past summer, several Indian carriers as well as Venezuelan, Bolivian and Cuban ones were among potential foreign buyers.

IFC is having negotiations about An-148 and An-158 regional jets leasing with clients from South-East Asia (China and Vietnam) as well as from Latin America (Venezuela, Bolivia, Argentina, Chile, Ecuador and Cuba). Following IFC Director General Alexander Rubtsov not only Russian but foreign companies as well have strong interest in new Russian- and Ukrainian-built aircraft and have need of leasing services. That’s why IFC has begun expansion of its business abroad. A contract was signed with Venezuela on founding a leasing company on a shared basis. The work of founding the same companies in South-East Asia and the Middle East is under way. Negotiations are held with major financial institutes from China and Iran. Mention should be made that the first year of scheduled operation of An-148s by Russian and Ukrainian air companies has been quite successful. Despite several unavoidable teething problems inherent in any advanced hardware, both operators and passengers praise the airliner. This, coupled with the impressive potential orderbook, makes the An-148’s future bright enough. The manufacturer has only to increase the output rate, stick to high quality standards and pay closer attention to the wishes of the users.

take-off november 2010

29


Andrey Fomin

commercial aviation | programme

MC-21

LANDS ITS FIRST ORDERS

An agreement on delivery of 50 short/ medium-haul airliners to the Russian Technologies state corporation that manages assets of a number of major Russian air carriers was signed in a ceremony on 17 September, during the Sochi 2010 investment forum. The planes are to be delivered between 2016 and 2022. Russian Premier Vladimir Putin and United Aircraft Corporation (UAC) President Alexey Fyodorov attended the ceremony. The agreement was signed by Russian Technologies Director General Sergey Chemezov and Irkut Corp. President Oleg Demchenko. Under the agreement, a firm order for the MC-21 delivery will have been made by late December 2010. Given the agreement with Russian Technologies, the MC-21 orderbook has grown up to 190 units, with the first 140 airliners having been ordered at the Farnborough air show in July this year. During the Farnborough air show, Irkut operated a pavilion of its own, in which it set up a full-scale mock-up of a 20-m-long section of the fuselage of the MC-21 short/ medium-haul passenger plane now under development. The section included the flightdeck, passenger cabin, galley and lavatories. Thus, in Farnborough, potential customers had for the first time enjoyed an opportunity to see with their own eyes what Irkut offered as opposed to the Airbus A320 and

30

take-off november 2010

At the ceremony of signing a contract with Crecom Burj Resources, Malaysia. Left to right: Oleg Demchenko, President, Irkut Corp., Alexey Fyodorov, President, UAC, and Khairil Anuar Rahman, Chairman, Crecom Burj Resources

Boeing 737 aircraft that have monopolised the global market. However, the unveiling of the full-scale MC-21 fuselage mock-up was not the only key event in Irkut’s pavilion where the launch contracts and agreements on the advanced airliner’s deliveries were signed during the early days of the show. The MC-21 launch customer is Malaysian investment company Crecom Burj Resources that awarded 50 firm orders (25 MC-21-200s and 25 MC-21-300s designed for 168 and 212

seats in the single-class tourist layout respectively). The contract is valued at $3 billion in list prices, with the delivery slated for 2016–20. Crecom Burj Resources has far-reaching plans to promote the MC-21 on the Southeast Asian market. In addition, to develop Malaysia’s aircraft industry, the company proposes the establishment of a MC-21 domestic regional maintenace centre, which will enable it to take part in the full-rate production of the aircraft of the type. www.take-off.ru

Alexey Volokhov

Piotr BUTOWSKI


Andrey Fomin

MC-21 passenger cabins: business class and tourist class (right)

MC-21’s glass cockpit

Later on, Irkut signed letter of intent for 90 more MC-21 aircraft in Farnborough. The Ilyushin Finance Co. leasing company ordered 28 airliners of the type with 22 options (50 aircraft in all). Another Russian aircraft lessor, VEB-Leasing, made an agreement for 15 planes with 15 options. Two letters of intent were signed by air carriers as well: Russian tourist charter carrier Nordwind ordered five MC-21s plus two options, and a customer, who requested anonymity, ordered the same number of airliners. Overall, the deals clinched generated a good orderbook for the MC-21 developer, totalling 140 aircraft. According to the developer, the MC-21 will one-up its closest foreign rival, the Airbus A320, in better efficiency, since its direct operating costs are expected to be 12–15% less, fuel efficiency 25% higher and maintenance costs 30% lower. This is to be achieved through using cuttingedge equipment and systems from major foreign manufacturers and a number of ingenious design and layout solutions. For instance, a large part of the airliner’s design, 35–37%, is composites, of which, in particular, the wing and empennage will be made in full. The most important component of the MC-21’s competitive edge concept is the www.take-off.ru

comfort unprecedented for aircraft in the class. The MC-21’s cabin is 3.65 m wide, which is 12 cm more than that of the A320 and 19 cm of the cabin of the Boeing 737. This allows either using wider and more comfortable seats or increasing the width of the aisle, which will expedite boarding and disembarkation and enable passengers to pass clearly of service trolleys easily. Like the Dreamliner, the MC-21 will have larger passenger windows. Comfort will be enhanced by maintaining a cabin pressure corresponding to an altitude of 1,830 m (the cabin pressure of the EU and US rivals corresponds to the 2,400-m altitude) and using a very effective air conditioning system.

When launching the MC-21, a lot was said about the window of opportunities for the programme. At present, air carriers all over the world have essentially to choose between two types of medium-haul narrow-body airliners – the A320 family and Boeing 737. The orderbooks of the two are set for several years to come, because single-aisle planes are all the rage in the world now. Thus, if Irkut can deliver on its promises and bring the MC-21 on the market in 2016, it will have a very good chance to carve up a good slice of the market for itself. Irkut President Oleg Demchenko estimates that the MC-21 programme can win the company up to 10% of the global 150–200-seat narrow-body airliner market. Leading Western companies, which joined the MC-21 programme, agree with him, believing the MC-21 output may exceed 1,000 aircraft. UAC President Alexey Fyodorov said, “The MC-21 is UAC’s priority as far as civil aviation programmes are concerned. The plants in Ulyanovsk and Voronezh are coming on board; they will join UAC’s division being established on the basis of Irkut. The government is doing its best to facilitate the programme. Pursing the MC-21 programme, we are developing a new-generation passenger plane and, hence, high-tech branches of Russia’s economy”. There is little time left before the airliner’s maiden flight. Irkut plans that the first MC-21 will take to the skies in late 2014. If all goes to plan, its certification tests will have been complete by 2016 and then deliveries of early production-standard airliners to the launch customer will kick off. Andrey Fomin

Andrey Fomin

Andrey Fomin

commercial aviation | programme

Models of MC-21 three versions

take-off november 2010

31


military aviation | news

Yury Kabernik

New Su-34s for Russian Air Force

Late in August, Sukhoi’s division Novosibirsk Aircraft Production Association (NAPO) completed the assembly and conducted the maiden flight of the lead Su-34 tactical bomber under a five-year governmental contract for 32 aircraft of the type for the Russian Air Force, concluded in December 2008. In all, NAPO is to build and deliver four Su-34s this year, which has been confirmed by Sukhoi Director General Mikhail Pogosyan during the latest air show in Farnborough. The remaining three aircraft are in Novosibirsk in the final stages of assembly. The RusAF Commander-in-Chief, Col.-Gen. Alexander Zelin said on 1 September during his visit to Voronezh that the four aircraft would enter service with the Voronezh air

base (Baltimor airfield) operating previous-generation Su-24M tactical bombers at present. In the course of the RusAF’s revamping, the disbanding of the air regiments stationed at Shatalovo and Buturlinovka air bases in the Smolensk and Voronezh regions is expected to result in activation of a largest air base in the country. It is to operate Su-24MR and MiG-25RB recce aircraft and Su-25 ground attack aircraft in addition to Su-34s and Su-24Ms – about a hundred warplanes in all. The Russian Defence Ministry has taken delivery of five production Su-34s to date. Three of them (serials 02, 04 and 05) are used for operational evaluation by the RusAF Combat and Conversion Training Centre (CCTC) in Lipetsk and two more (serials 01 and

03), along with several LRIP aircraft, are used in the final stages of the official tests at the Defence Ministry’s Chkalov GLITs State Flight Test Centre in Akhtubinsk. The Lipetsk-based Su-34s flew across the country and took part in large-scale Exercise Vostok 2010 (East 2010) this summer (see the picture). The new aircraft built under the 2008 governmental contract differ from the aircraft of the type earlier built by NAPO in several improvements. For instance, they are powered by upgraded engines, AL-31F Series 42s (AL-31F-M1s), developed and produced by MMPP Salut plant. The engines feature enhanced thrust and a longer service life. The decision to fit all subsequent production Su-34s with such engines was taken

following the AL-31F Series 42’s successful official trials, Salyt Director General Yury Yeliseyev announced at the Engines 2010 show this spring. AL-31F Series 42 engines already power the 24 Su-27SM fighters operated by a RusAF air base in the Russian Far East. Further down the road, new Su-34s are going to be furnished with an APU derived by Aerosila from the TA14-130-35 auxiliary power unit equipping the Su-35 fighter. The use of the APU will give a considerable shot in the arm to the Su-34’s selfcontained operation. According to the ARMS-TASS news agency, tests of the APU on board a Su-34 commenced at GLITs this summer. In addition, the passed milestones of the tests have led to the introduction into the aircraft of advanced operating modes for their avionics, specifically for the phased-array fire control radar from the Leninets holding company. If all goes to plan, the Su-34 will have completed the full set of its official tests at GLITs by year-end, which will enable the first RusAF line air base to receive four cuttingedge aircraft NAPO is assembling and testing now. In the future, NAPO is going to step up the Su-34 output rate: Mikhail Pogosyan said during the Farnborough air show in July that the out was to reach 12–20 aircraft a year.

The first Su-30M2 built

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2015. The first of the Su-35s ordered by the Defence Ministry is nearly completed by KnAAPO and is due to fly for the first time before year-end. In 2011 the first four production Su-35S aircraft will join official tests to begin soon with the deliveries of the next production fighters to RusAF manoeuvre units to commence in 2012–2013. By the way the Defence Ministry is pondering an order for several Su-30MKI twin-seat supermanoeuvrable fighters as well from the Irkut Corp.’s Irkutsk Aviation Plant for use by RusAF aircrews for Su-35 conversion training.

KnAAPO

The first Sukhoi Su-30M2 twoseat multirole fighter made under the governmental contract awarded last August during the MAKS 2009 air show performed its first flight from the factory airfield of the Komsomolsk-on-Amur Aircraft Production Association (KnAAPO) on 17 September 2010. As is known, KnAAPO, a division of Sukhoi, is under the contract to manufacture 64 combat aircraft, including 12 Su-27SM single-seaters, four Su-30M2 twin-seaters and 48 cutting-edge Su-35S fighters and deliver them to the Russian Air Force until

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Arseniev


military aviation | news

PAK FA tests go on The flight trials of the first prototype of the Sukhoi’s Future Tactical Fighter (PAK FA) resumed in Zhukovsky (Moscow Region) in mid-August following a two-month break for scheduled improvements. On 31 August the aircraft was demonstrated to a highranking Indian delegation, whose members and their Russian counterparts discussed the coming establishing of the joint venture designed to develop and produce the fifth-generation future multirole fighter known in India and FGFA. Test pilot Sergey Bogdan, a

holder of the Merited Test Pilot of Russia title, performed an impressive set of aerobatics on the T50-1 for the delegation. Two other Sukhoi design bureau pilots joined the PAK FA test programme in September. Roman Kondratyev flew the plane for the first time on 15 September while Yury Vaschuk on 20 September. A bigger team of the pilots qualified for flying the advanced fighter will speed up the tests that a second flying PAK FA prototype is expected to join by the end of the year.

First Ansat helicopters arrive to Syzran 8 October saw the delivery of the first three Ansat-U trainer helicopters to the Russian Air Force Academy Syzran Affiliate as the Syzran Flight School has been renamed recently. The machines were ferried from the Kazan Helicopters JSC to Syzran Flight School airfield by the school’s Deputy Commander for Flight Training Col. Alexander Pantsev, Maj. Anatoly Anafrichuk and Lt.-Col. Ivan Gnetetsky with the Army Aviation Combat and Conversion Training Centre (CCTC) in Torzhok. It is the Torzhok-based CCTC where Syzran-based instructor pilots had converted to the new helicopter

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type, using the Ansat-U machines delivered from the Kazan Helicopters earlier this year. In Syzran, the Ansat-Us will oust the obsolete Mi-2s used for initial training. Two more new Ansat-Us flew to Syzran Flight School from the city of Kazan on 20 October, and the Russian Defence Ministry web site says, “The Air Force Academy Syzran Affiliate will have received as many as seven new helicopters by year-end”. Hero of Russia Col. Nikolay Yartsev, commander of the Air Force Academy Syzran Affiliate, called the arrival of the Ansat-Us to Syzran

a “historic event”. This year, the only Russian military helicopter pilots’ flight school, which turned 70, has received new aircraft for the

first time in many years – four new Mi-8MTs were delivered in June and the long-awaited conversion to the Ansat-U has begun.

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industry | results

558 ARP OFFERS SATELLITE The history of 558 Aircraft Repair Plant started on 26 June 1941 – virtually on the first days of the Great Patriotic War. Nowadays the plant is a major aircraft repair enterprise which acquired a reputation of a reliable partner owing to high quality of aircraft repairs and individual approach to each Customer. Special attention is paid to development of new models of military hardware and service equipment, as well as to introduction of new technological processes. 558 APR performs overhaul of the Su-17 (Su-22), Su-25, Su-27, MiG-29 and An-2 aircraft, Mi-8 (Mi-17) and Mi-24 (Mi-35) helicopters of all versions. The enterprise carries out full cycle of overhaul of the airframes and all component items. Besides, the plant successfully works on the upgrade of aviation materiel. Upgraded MiG-29 and

Scanning mode

Su-27 fighters acquire brand new features and combat capabilities: they received an improved cockpit display and management system, advanced navigation and radar sighting systems as well as an expanded weapon suite. Another area of aircraft upgrade is installation of SATELLITE system – an onboard equipment of individual radio engineering protection which nearly eliminate the possibility of hitting the protected object by missiles with radar guided homing heads; the jamming is created to all attacking enemy radars (fighters, interceptors, surface-to-air missiles, etc.). The jamming impact is formed automatically at all stages of interception enabling the pilot to carry out his combat mission without being distracted to activate jamming. SATELLITE does not interfere the operation of onboard equipment of protected aircraft. The system can be www.take-off.ru

Lock-on and tracking of the false target

Missile launch

installed both on combat and civil aircraft either in containers or inside the airframe. To make container option more efficient, SATELLITE-M version was developed. The advantage of this version is that the containers with equipment are designed in the form of transition beams for two hardpoints holding aircraft weapons, so our system does not occupy separate hardpoint. When blanketed enemy radar is in the scanning mode, the system creates masking interference in the channels of range, speed and angular data. On the enemy scanning displays numerous false target marks appear commercial

making it difficult to identify the true target amidst the false ones. In the tracking mode, the equipment produces driven disturbances in the channels of angular data measurement. Radar aerial starts tracking the false target situated in the different direction relative to the protected aircraft. Angular position of the false target changes in the predetermined manner imitating manoeuvres of the protected aircraft. Jamming creates a latent controllable withdrawal of goniometrical scanning systems which results in occurrence of intensive sign-alternating overload of missiles and curving their flight-path guidance thus considerably decreasing missiles flight range and increasing their current and final miss. Owing to accumulated experience, unique qualification of personnel, advanced production facilities, high quality of service, strict and timely execution of the orders, 558 ARP earned well-deserved authority among the airmen of many countries of the world. 558 ARP is always open for cooperation. 558 Aircraft Repair Plant JSC Bld. 7, 50 let VLKSM, Baranovichi, Brest region, 225320, Republic of Belarus Tel.: +375 (163) 42-99-54 Fax: +375 (163) 42-91-64 E-mail: box@558arp.by http://www.558arp.by take-off november 2010

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military aviation | interview Based on the bench test results produced, is it possible to give a preliminary assessment whether your radar is a success or not and assesses its strengths and weaknesses compared with its Western analogues? Certainly, our AESA is a success; it is as good as any foreign radar of the type. We have evaluated the transmission power and reception noise, and the results give us hope that the performance of our AESA will surpass even that of the F-22’s radar. We have tested a whole range of operating modes – surveillance, lock-on, tracking, multiple-target and simultaneous beam shaping. If we had a flying testbed, we would have proved the radar’s strengths on real sorties already. I hope, the decision to have the flying testbed made will be taken eventually. As is known, the radar system of the fifth-generation fighter will comprise five AESAs. We have spoken about the basic one in the front so far. What about the rest of them? Naturally, we have been working on all of the components of the radar system. The L-band wing array have been manufactured and tested. We are waiting for the fighter’s

TIKHOMIROV-NIIP AESA READY FOR FLIGHT TESTS

INTERVIEW WITH TIKHOMIROV-NIIP DIRECTOR GENERAL YURY BELY A feature of the future fifth-generation fighter is to be its highly automated multifunctional integrated active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar system. Such radar is under development by the Tikhomirov Scientific Research Institute of Instrument Design (Tikhomirov-NIIP). To date, TikhomirovNIIP has made three X-band AESA prototypes as well as experimental L-band AESA and conducted extensive lab tests and debugging. Tikhomirov-NIIP Director General Yury Bely told Take-off about the state of the AESA development programme and other pressing issues. Let us start with the ‘hottest’ TikhomirovNIIP’s ongoing programme – the AESA radar development to fit the fifth-generation fighter. What is the status of the programme and what results were achieved by now? We at Tikhomirov-NIIP believe the programme has made quite an advance. We have assembled three AESA prototypes, gotten a wealth of experience and understood full well what has to be done with the transmit-receive (T-R) modules and the rest of the design of

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the radar. We have outlined efforts to iron out the deficiencies revealed during the bench tests and are launching the manufacture of a couple of experimental modules earmarked for testing new solutions. However, even the first three AESAs made have displayed virtually all of the design characteristics and proved their high endurance. We have completed all of the mechanical and climatic tests, with the antenna operating smoothly under all conditions. We have dealt with all of the cooling issues that are rather difficult to us because the cooling of a rather power-consuming AESA is one of the most difficult phases of its development. Our designers have come up with an ingenious solution to the cooling issues. When is the AESA to be flight-tested? The developer of the aircraft will set the timing. The tentative decision is that the second AESA, previously earmarked for avionics bench testing by Sukhoi, will be mounted on the third PAK FA prototype. It is quite possible that this will take place early next year. Then we will equip the fourth fighter’s prototype with production-standard radar fitted with the third AESA we are testing now.

developer to send us relevant wing components for us to check our AESAs using standard fairings. The side-looking array documentation has been issued as well. The advanced T-R modules I have mentioned will be tested on side-looking AESAs and then will be used in the forward-looking antenna, because there is no radical difference in the technologies of the front and side-looking AESAs. The complete system, comprising the five AESAs will be installed in the next fighter prototypes. Let us talk about another of your advanced designs, the Irbis phased array radar. How is its development going on? As far as the Irbis is concerned, we have made good progress during its flight trials that now involve two Su-35 prototypes and a Su-30 flying testbed. The radar has operated smoothly and proven virtually all of the design characteristics in terms of range, including its unique long-range acquisition mode. An advanced transmitter has been developed, and its design reliability has ensured. The preliminary tests have been completed, and the Su-35 is waiting now for a nod to start its official trials. The first production Su-35 will have been made in www.take-off.ru


military aviation | interview Komsomolsk-on-Amur before year-end, and the Ryazan State Instrument-Making Plant is finalising the bench tests of production-standard Irbis radar slated for installation in it. The second radar has been made to fit the second production aircraft, with the third and fourth being manufactured. So, the four production Irbis radars will be delivered in the near future and be used in the official tests as part of the production-standard Su-35s. We test all operating modes on the flying testbed and then on two Su-35 prototypes, after which the only thing left is to have their performance confirmed using the standard Irbis radars on board production aircraft. Do you plan to upgrade your previous phased-array radar, the Bars? The media also have reported that replacing the Su-30MKI’s Bars with the Zhuk-AE radar is allegedly being pondered. What do you think of that? Upgrade of the Su-30MKI fighter is a separate line of work providing for gradual upgrade of the Bars phased-array radar as well. Stage One of the upgrade is to enhance its performance through introducing advanced operating modes and more capable computers and maximising the hardware solutions of the existing phased-array radar productionised in India. Stage Two is slated for replace the passive phased array with an AESA. We have reached agreement with the customer for such work, but no contract has been signed yet. Nonetheless, we have been following this line of work already, paying for that out of pocket. As for the hypothetical replacement of the Bars with the Zhuk-AE, we do not believe such a switch makes sense for a number of reasons. Firstly, even the first stage of upgrade will make the Bars more capable than the Zhuk-AE in terms of potential characteristics, and when fitted with an AESA it will boost its superiority even further. Secondly, the radar’s replacement would call for a very hard work to mate the other radar with the avionics X-band AESA prototype during bench tests in Tikhomirov-NIIP laboratory

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Wing-mounted L-band AESA prototype at MAKS 2009 airshow

and, hence, a lot of testing. Thirdly, the customer bought a license for full-scale production of the Su-30MKI fighter, including its Bars radar, and large-scale production has kicked off. The upgrade retains continuity, while the radar replacement will mean a waste of money. Would you dwell on other of your efforts to expand the capabilities of the existing radars? Just a fortnight ago, in late September, there was the first successful launch of an upgraded air-to-air missile by a Su-27SM3 prototype, with the missile hitting its target. To extend the missile’s range, we had upgraded the antenna, transmitter and RF update channel of the Su-27’s organic radar.

The Su-27SM3 upgraded fighter entered its official tests and, probably, will serve the pattern for upgrading the Su-27 fighters in combat units. In addition, gradual upgrade of the MiG-31 interceptor equipped with our Zaslon weapon control system with phased-array radar continues. As is known, during Phase One of the upgrade, the MiG-31 fleet was fitted with an advanced computer system and an up-to-date cockpit management system at the weapon systems operator’s station. Aircraft upgraded this way have been fielding with combat units now. Phase Two will see the weapons suite beefed up through adopting advanced medium- and long-range missiles and upgrading the Zaslon radar accordingly. The team you led developed small-size phased array radar, the Osa, to fit light warplanes, e.g. the Russian Yak-130, Chinese FC-1 (JF-17), etc. Has it got a future? Unfortunately, no contracts for the radar have been awarded yet but some customers show their strong interest in it. At the same time, other potential customers have shown interest in such radars, suggesting application of the Osa radar on various land-based and naval platforms. The same goes for the larger phased-array radar of ours, the Irbis. As for our airborne radars, we will focus in the near future on completing the fifth-generation AESA radar development, finishing the Irbis’s trials and productionising it for use on the Su-35, and upgrading the well-known Zaslon radar for the MiG-31, Bars for the Su-30MKI and N001 for the Su-27 and Su-30MK2. Thank you for an interesting interview and all the best in your work. take-off november 2010

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military aviation | report

FOLLOWING A LONG PAUSE Report from Nitka Late August and September saw the training of pilots with the carrierborne regiment of the Russian Navy’s Northern Fleet resume at the NIUTK ground-based test and training facility (Nitka in the Russian pilots’ vernacular) in the Crimea. Last time Northern Fleet pilots trained here was in summer 2007, the 2008 training session was disrupted due to the known developments in the Caucasus, and the Nitka facility itself experienced technical problems in 2009. There have been some issues earlier this year, too. A Take-off correspondent visited the training at Nitka in Saki. Nitka’s problems that derailed the training session of the Russian carrierborne air regiment pilots last year have recurred this year, too, in the form of the arrestor gear being in need of repair. Engineers with the Proletarsky Zavod plant (St. Petersburg) have run a technical assessment of the state of the devices, for which purpose Arrestor Gear No. 4 was disassembled and examined thoroughly. The examination proved the feasibility of training resumption with the use of three arrestor gears, which is quite permissible even on board the aircraft carrier. Time flies, and the carrierborne air regiment has been left recently by its old hands, some getting higher billets and other putting in for separation due to their age. The threat

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of losing experienced personnel and continuity in the Russian Navy’s unique and only carrierborne air regiment has emerged against the backdrop of the continuous reforming of the Russian Armed Forces. However, command spotted the negative trend on time, and new pilots were posted to the regiment – both rookie lieutenants and those transferred from the Air Force following a thorough selection. Manning the air regiment and preserving its seasoned personnel is especially important due to the Russian Navy’s plans to have new aircraft carriers built, because one naval aviation regiment will certainly not be enough to deploy on all of them. It seems that the Navy will not have to start from scratch any www.take-off.ru


military aviation | report more when time calls for an increase in carrierborne aviators. To train at Nitka this year, six Su-33 carrierborne single-seat fighters, three Su-25UTG twin-seat trainers and a land-based Su-27UB combat trainer flew to the Crimea from the Severomorsk-3 naval air station, the air regiment’s home base. KnAAPO had overhauled the Su-33s not long before that. The regiment is to receive four more aircraft of the type in autumn – the overhaul pace unheard-of for many years, actually, since the regiment received the aircraft 16 years ago. Almost 20 flying shifts had been done at Nitka within only a month, with all tasks fulfilled. Owing to the good job done by the

Victor DRUSHLYAKOV Photos by the author

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seasoned Ukrainian Navy personnel, maintaining the facility, and support units, the pilots restored and honed their ski-jump ramp-assisted takeoff and arrested landing skills. The most important is that the regiment’s five new pilots performed arrested landing by themselves after flight training supervised by instructor pilots. Lt.-Col. Oleg Kostyanoy, Maj. Andrey Pestov and Capt. Stanislav Avdin landed on the simulated deck for the first time on a Su-33, and Capt. Victor Tombak and Lt. Alexey Bityuk first snagged the arresting cable with the hook of a Su-25UTG. As usual, the training was influenced by the Nitka facility’s peculiarities caused by continuous change in the force and direction of

Left to right: Northern Fleet Air Arm combat training department head senior inspector pilot Igor Matkovsky, shipborne fighter regiment commander Yevgeny Kuznetsov, and fighter squadron deputy commander Vladimir Kokurin

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the wind. When operating off a carrier, this factor is more stable owing to the ship’s ability to manoeuvre. Nonetheless, the Nitka training was a success despite the existing limitations. The regiment’s ground crews, too, performed well, maintaining the aircraft in combat readiness far away from the home base. Unfortunately, aircrews were unable to begin to learn the ropes on the advanced MiG-29KUB carrierborne fighter, though the decision to field the fighter with the air regiment had been taken as far back as a year ago. The delivery of the first productionstandard aircraft of the type is believed to be next year.

The Admiral Kuznetsov carrier put to sea in late September, by the time the regiment had come back from the Crimea, with the flight training continuing on deck. The first flight session on board the Admiral Kuznetsov took place on 6 October. Carrierborne operations were supposed to go on, weather permitting, until early November. The carrier is slated for overhaul and upgrade next year, which could last until 2015, during which time, another training session is planned for Nitka in 2011, with MiG-29KUBs’ participation being a possibility. Once the session has been completed, repair of Nitka’s arrestors will be unavoidable and rather expensive. Further down the line, a new training facility is to be commissioned in Yeisk (Krasnodar district). This will allow longer larger-scale training of naval pilots, with training no longer being subject to political and technical uncertainties. The annual dreary preparatory period, which is unavoidable under the Russian-Ukrainian Nitka lease agreement, will no longer be necessary. By the way development of the future carrierborne aircraft is being launched in Russia. Nobody doubts any longer the importance of the Russian Navy developing an aircraft carrier force of its own and Russia’s aircraft industry developing advanced carrier-based aircraft. Hence, the programme should be given national priority owing to its complexity and the huge investment required.

Lt. Alexey Bityuk who made his first arrester landing during this training

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military aviation | report

Sergey Kuznetsov

znetso Sergey Ku

v

Sergey Kuznetsov

Flight training onboard Admiral Kuznetsov carrier, October 2010

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take-off november 2010

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Andrey Fomin

military aviation | cooperation

JF-17 Sino-Pakistani 21st-Century MiG-21? A most interesting warplane novelty shown in a static display area of the Farnborough air show this summer was the JF-17 (FC-1) light multirole fighter developed by the Chengdu Aircraft Industry Corporation (CAC) in the Chinese city of Chengdu and adopted by the Pakistani Air Force (PAF) recently. During the upcoming Zhuhai air show, the fighter is to debut in the demonstration flight programme as well. The aircraft is co-produced by CAC and the Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC) in Kamra. The light fighter in the 10-t class, which mounts relatively up-to-date avionics and weapons, has been dubbed ‘21st-century MiG-21’ by the media. Indeed, the JF-17 emerged in China as a successor to the clone of the legendary Soviet MiG-21 – the J-7 (F-7) that had been in production there for years. However, time will tell whether the new plane becomes as popular in the world as the famous Soviet fighter was. Only PAF buys the JF-17 so far, and nothing has been heard even of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) plans to procure it. Nonetheless, several countries, which have bought Chinese fighters customarily due to their inability to afford pricier Western aircraft, have displayed interest in the fighter.

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Background The new Sino-Pakistani fighter dates back to the later 1980s, when Pakistan began to consider a replacement for the obsolescent F-6 (the Chinese derivative of the Soviet MiG-19) and, further down the road, the F-7 (the Chinese version of the MiG-21, which was supplied to PAF on a large scale in the F-7P variant). After attempts at wooing US companies to join the programme had failed, the Chengdu plant’s efforts to develop a successor to the F-7 carried on solo. The programme was dubbed Super 7. The China Aviation Technology Import and Export Corporation (CATIC) offered it to Pakistan on the equal financial participation and risk sharing terms. Initially, the Super 7 was expected to carry Chinese-made avionics and weapons, with adaptation of Western ones further down the line being a possibility. Assembly of production-standard aircraft was to be launched by PAC in Kamra, which had had an experience in repairing Chinese fighters and making their spares. China and Pakistan in 1988 made an intergovernmental agreement on co-development a co-production of a new fighter designated in China as

FC-1 (Fighter China, the first fighter developed by China). Meanwhile, construction of the early prototypes of the fighter was in full swing at CAC’s Chengdu plant. Russian-made afterburning turbofan engine RD-93, a derivative of the MiG-29’s baseline RD-33 tailored for use on single-engine planes, was selected to power it. The Klimov company in St. Petersburg developed the RD-93 that differed from the baseline model in having an accessory gearbox mounted below the engine, advanced airframe attachment fittings and an improved control system, while retained the basic thrust, fuel consumption, weight and dimensions. Klimov supplied the first RD-93 prototypes to China in 2002– 2003 to fit FC-1 prototypes. In early 2000s, the Chengdu plant launched construction of six prototypes of the new fighter, including four designed for flight tests. The first prototype, PT-1, had been completed by summer 2003 and performed its maiden mission on 25 August 2003, controlled by test pilot Wang Wenjian. On the same day, PAF announced a new designation for the plane – the JF-17, with JF standing www.take-off.ru


militaryphotos.net

military aviation | cooperation

for ‘joint fighter’ to highlight the international, Chinese-Pakistani, efforts and the number 17 symbolising the aircraft being the most up-to-date one in PAF inventory right after the most sophisticated PAF fighter, the F-16. At the same time, the aircraft was given a proper name, Thunder. In China, the fighter retained its FC-1 designation.

From maiden flight to launch deliveries

DefenceTalk.com

Andrey FOMIN

DefenceTalk.com

FC-1 first flying prototype in a test flight

Two FC-1 first flying prototypes, PT-1 and PT-3, at CAC airfield in Chengdu

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The second FC-1/JF-17 prototype, PT-2, was intended for static tests and the third one, the PT-3, became the second flying prototype. The Chengdu plant finished its construction less than a year after the first plane had been completed, and it flew on 9 April 2004. Two years later, on 28 April 2006, the PT-4 prototype joined the flight test programme. In addition to testing stability, controllability, manoeuvrability, takeoff and landing handling and key systems operation, which the first two flying prototypes were doing, the PT-4 was to start the trials of the Chinese-made avionics suite. Similar tasks faced the sixth prototype, PT-6 (maiden flight on 10 September 2006), while the fifth prototype, PT-5, was designed for endurance tests. The ground and flight tests of all FC-1 prototypes were conducted in China, at CAC’s flight test facility in Chengdu, at CFTE flight research centre in Yanlian and at testing ranges of PLAAF, with Pakistani pilots taking part in them proactively since spring 2004. Conceived as an F-7 derivative, the new fighter gained an utterly new appearance. Actually, the only similarity between it and Chinese clone of the MiG-21 are the size (length – 14 m, wingspan – 8.5 m, wing area – 24 sq.m), weight (empty weight – 6,450 kg, normal takeoff weight – 9,100 kg, maximum takeoff weight – 12,400 kg) and 23-mm underbelly automatic cannon. The FC-1 got fixed side-mounted air intakes, which made available enough room in the nose section to house an up-to-date radar (Chinese KLJ-7 so far). The delta wing has large enough leading-edge root extensions (LERX), but it would be an overstatement take-off november 2010

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The first PAC-manufactured JF-17 (No. 09-111) featuring special paintjob, November 2009

in Islamabad on 23 March 2008 the spectators saw as many as four JF-17s flying in tight formation over the Pakistani capital city.

Andrey Fomin

to say that the aircraft has a blended wing/ body fuselage characteristic of most of the fourth-generation fighters. The wing highlift devices, comprising moving flaps and leading-edge slats, are controlled automatically to enhance manoeuvrability depending on speed and the angle of attack. The aircraft control system is a compromise between the fly-by-wire and mechanical solutions, with the FBW control capability implemented for pitch only and the automatic-stability mechanical control solution taking care of roll and directional control. The JF-17 is powered by a rather efficient and thrustcapable turbofan typical of the aircraft in the class, and its instrumentation features the class cockpit design with three large multifunction displays and a head-up display. At the same time with flight-testing the prototypes and based on the deficiencies revealed in them, the Chengdu plant started manufacturing an eight-ship low-rate initial production (LRIP) JF-17 batch intended for operational evaluation in Pakistan. The first two aircraft of the batch were brought to Pakistan from China in February 2007. Their final assembly took place at PAC’s Kamra facility in Punjab Province in the northeast of the country, where they were taken for a check flight on 2 March 2007 by Pakistani military pilots, Wg Cdr Ahsan Rafiq, who had been appointed office commanding the JF-17 Test and Evaluation Flight, and Sqn Ldr Hakim Raza. The planes were serialled 07-101 and 07-102. Merely three weeks later, on 23 March 2007, both pilots demonstrated the latest Pakistani fighters during the air parade in Islamabad in honour of another anniversary of the Pakistani Armed Forces. On the verge of the air parade, the JF-17 serialled 07-101 had been given a special paintjob patterned after the Pakistani and Chinese national colours. A year later, the six remaining LRIP aircraft were delivered to Kamra from China, with serials 07-103, 07-104 and 07-105 in February 2008 and 08-106, 08-107 and 08-108 in March. At another military parade

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JF-17 first pre-series aircraft (No. 07-101) in special markings at the air parade in Islamabad skies, 23 March 2007

Made in Pakistan “We at PAC do not just assemble these fighters like plants assembling knockdown kits. We manufacture their parts and units actively by ourselves”, one of the leaders of the Pakistani JF-17 programme directorate said in Farnborough this summer. He emphasised that considerable efforts were being made to beef up the production facilities of the PAC Kamra to increase the JF-17 output, maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO): “Now, we have a four-plant complex operating at Kamra and employing numerous staff, which is the cause behind the complex having been dubbed Thunder City”. The official launch of PAC’s JF-17 production line was on 22 January 2008, and 23 November 2009 saw the rollout of the first Pakistani-made fighter serialled 09-111 and given a bright green paintjob sporting the Pakistani flag (the first two productionstandard JF-17 serialled 09-109 and 09-110 were built in Chengdu). As many as 16

One of two Pakistani JF-17s (No. 10-113) unveiled at Farnborough in July 2010

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military aviation | cooperation

Alexey Mikheyev

JF-17s had been built by July 2010, including eight LRIP and eight production ones with serials up to 10-116, with six of them having been made in Pakistan. Two of them (10-113 and 10-114) were displayed during the Farnborough air show in July this year. PAC’s production capabilities allow an output of 15–25 JF-17s a year (an aircraft or two a month). A statement was made in Farnborough that “Pakistan’s participation in the fighter co-production will exceed 50%”. In all probability, PAC specialises in manufacture of JF-17 parts and units and their final assembly so far. The official news release circulated by the JF-17 programme directorate during the air show said the fighter would be produced in 50-ship blocks, with each subsequent block to differ from the previous one in a number of novelties. The Pakistani Air Force is going to take delivery of the first 50 fighters until year-end 2012. The service awarded the

launch contract for 42 production aircraft on 7 March 2009 (another eight planes were, probably, LRIP ones). PAF is to receive as many as 150 fighters by 2015, and the total JF-17 requirement of the Pakistani Air Force is estimated at 250 aircraft designed to oust all of the current F-7 and Mirage fighters and A-5 attack aircraft. The T&E Flight mentioned above became the first PAF unit to operate the JF-17. The unit was activated on 20 February 2007, upon which its personnel began to learn the ropes on the aircraft of a new type, conduct opeval and devise flight, tactical and maintenance manuals. The T&E Flight was fielded with eight LRIP aircraft. The first PAF combat unit on production-standard JF-17 fighters – the 26th air squadron led by Wg Cdr Khalid Mehmood, was activated at Minhas airbase in Kamra, near PAC’s production complex on 18 February 2010.

JF-17’s Russian heart The current prototype, LRIP and early production JF-17 fighters are fitted with systems developed in China with Pakistani participation. The only exception is their powerplant, with the engines supplied from Russia, which has repeatedly caused considerable concern on the part of another major partner of Russia in military technical cooperation and Pakistan’s confirmed opponent – India. Recently, the question of whether or not it was reasonable to continue the RD-93 deliveries to China was raised in Russia as well, after the FC-1/JF-17, which had started a proactive promotion to third countries, rivalled the MiG-29 for a lucrative contract. Following the delivery of the first prototype engines by Klimov to fit FC-1 prototypes, China and Russia made a deal in April 2005 for delivery of 100 production RD-93s in support of the full-rate production of the fighter. The contract is valued at about $238 million and can extend the output to 500 units in the future. Klimov made the first 15 engines during 2005–2006, with the Chernyshev MME in Moscow handling the full-scale production and delivery of the rest of the RD-93s. Meanwhile, given India’s continuous pressure on Russia due to these supplies and trying to get rid of its engine dependence on Russia, China has for years been running a programme on an indigenous RD-93 analogue designated as WS-13 Taishan. China

RD-93 turbofan being delivered by Chernyshev MME to China for JF-17 fighters

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(a Chinese-made WMD-7 target designator pod was displayed next to the JF-17 during the Farnborough air show). Provision for a helmet-mounted sight has been made too. The navigation suite is wrapped around an inertial ring laser gyro system mated with GPS and a standard set of radio navigation gear (ILS, TACAN, etc.). The cockpit management system is based on the HOTAS controls, three large colour multifunction liquid crystal displays with a digital terrain map, and a HUD with the angle of field of view standing at 25° at the least. A full-colour video camera and a VCR are included to record information. The communications suite comprises two UHF/VHF radios and a datalink. The selfdefence suite is made up of illumination and missile attack warning stations. The KG300G podded electronic warfare system from the Chinese Electronics Technology Corporation (CETC) was on display next to the fighter at Farnborough. The JF-17 can haul its weapons, podded systems and drop tanks on seven hardpoints, with the two of them on the wingtips are used only to mount dogfight missiles, while the wing inboard and underbelly stations are designed mostly for drop tanks – an 800-litre one under belly and two 800- or 1,000-litre under wing. Instead of the underbelly drop tank, the hardpoint there can mount a 2,000-lb (900-kg) free-fall or guided bomb. Smaller bombs, various guided missiles and EW and target designator pods are attached to the middle underwing hardpoints. Thus, the fighter’s single-sortie warload is not big. It includes up to four missiles on an air-to-air mission, while on an air-to-ground mission it comprises a 2,000-lb Mk84 or GBU-10 bomb or four 450-kg Mk82 bombs on twin bomb racks, or similar cluster bombs or incendiary canisters, or one or two air-launched antiship and antiradiation missiles. The all-up warload, including drop tanks, is within 3,600 kg. There is also a 23-mm integral twin-barrelled automatic cannon at the pilot’s disposal. At the initial stage, the JF-17’s basic airto-air weapons should be Chinese bi-spectral

JF-17 cockpit mock-up at MAKS 2007 airshow

is reported to have started rig tests of the first WS-13 example as far back as 2006, and a experimental engine is said to power an FC-1 prototype in Chengdu. However, Air Vice-Marshal Mohammad Arif, JF-17 programme manager on the Pakistani side of the project, said in Farnborough: “The development of the engine will take a lot of time, probably, five years or more”. At the same time, other Pakistani officials are more optimistic than their boss is and believe that “he has voiced the worst possible variant, though the engine’s development could be completed much sooner, in fact”. No doubt, the design of the Chinese WS-13 is wrapped around the RD-93 like technical solutions of the Russia-exported AL-31F were used widely in developing the WS-10 Taihan unveiled at the Zhuhai air show in November 2008 and designed to power the J-10, J-11B and J-15 fighters. However, it looks like the Chinese designers of the WS-13 ran into the problems of reliability and weight constraints, just as they Air-to-air missiles for JF-17 fighter

SD-10A (PL-12)

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did developing the Taihan. The reason is the lack of experience in up-to-date turbofan engines development and production, albeit licence production. However, Chinese machine-building has been progressing like there is no tomorrow of late, and the day will come soon when China will cease importing Russian aircraft engines after having ensured acceptable characteristics of its own aero engines.

Avionics and weapons suites The JF-17 carries all-Chinese avionics so far. Its avionics suite’s architecture is based on two MIL-STD 1553B multiplex data channels and two central computers. The primary targeting system of the fighter is the KLJ-7 multimode pulse-Doppler slotted-array radar capable of tracking “a considerable number” of targets. To detect and track ground threats and attack them with precision-guided munitions, the aircraft can be fitted with a podded optronic system with the infrared and laser capabilities

Basic characteristics of JF-17’s air-to-air missiles

PL-5EII

Drawing by Yevgeny Yerokhin

Defence.pk

military aviation | cooperation

Length, mm Diameter, mm Wingspan, mm Launch weight, kg Warhead weight, kg Range, km Maximal Mach Maximal g-load Guidance system

PL-5EII 2,893 127 617 83 6 0,5–18 2.2 40

SD-10A 3,934 203 674 (752) 180 n.d.a. 1–70 4 38

heat-seeker inertial + active radar homer

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PL-5EII and SD-10A AAMs

LS-6 satnav-homed gliding bomb

WMD-7 optronic sighting pod

Andrey Fomin

Andrey Fomin

C802A anti-ship missile

Andrey Fomin

heat-seeking dogfight missile PL-5EII and active radar homing medium-range missile SD-10A. The former is a Chinese derivative of Soviet missiles R-3S and R-13M and similar to the latest variants of US missile AIM-9 Sidewinder. The SD-10A is comparable to the US AIM-120 AMRAAM and Russian RVV-AE. It is an indigenous design fitted with an active radar homer with inertial RF-updated guidance on the initial leg of the trajectory. PLAAF’s J-8F, J-10 and J-11B fighters have had in its inventory since 2005. It came to light during the Farnborough air show that the trials of the PL-5EII missile and gravity bombs as part of the JF-17’s weapons suite had been completed and the integration of the SD-10A medium-range missile was still underway and expected to be finished by year-end 2010. Work also is underway on integrating certain air-launched weapons – already available to Pakistan or ordered in other countries – with the JF-17’s weapons suite. Mention should be made that Chinese heavy antiship missile C-802A, which, probably, is slated for integration with the fighter’s weapons suite, was displayed next to the JF-17 in Farnborough. One also could see there the LS-6 inertial-navigation tail-kitted glide bomb previously displayed at Zhuhai. At present, Chinese engineers and testers and the Pakistani military are busy with developing the so-called Phase I (i.e. Chinese-made) systems and weapons and integrating them with the fighter, and the talks on the JF-17’s further avionics and weapons suite development through introduction of Western gear are going on. For instance, it is known that in February 2010, the partners displayed interest in adapting the Thales RC400 radar and Mica mediumrange missile to the fighter along with a number of other precision-guided weapons. It is believed that Pakistan’s long-standing wish to fit the JF-17 with European-made avionics and weapons could become true in the second block of 50 production-standard fighters, whose production is slated to kick off in 2013.

Andrey Fomin

military aviation | cooperation

Having delivered the first productionstandard fighters and been inspired by the Pakistani military’s positive response, the JF-17 developer is not going to limit itself to the Pakistani market alone. Certainly, the 150 firm orders with 100 options is a rather good result. However, there are many countries accustomed to buying Chinese aircraft that, albeit hardly cutting-edge, are quite combat-capable and, which is more, inexpensive, nonetheless. The competition in the www.take-off.ru

KG-300G electronic warfare pod

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Andrey Fomin

“The First Chinese” not to limit itself to Pakistan alone?


military aviation | cooperation Given today’s realities, the Sino-Pakistani aircraft will hardly break the record set by the legendary MiG-21 that made it to the inventories of 50 air forces worldwide and numbered almost 15,000 in its day. However, catching on as a light and inexpensive fighter is quite feasible. Maybe, those calling it somewhat ironically “the 21st-century MiG-21” are right.

Basic characteristics of JF-17

cake on the global market, once the MiG-21 and F-7 have gradually become history. Soon after Farnborough 2010, the press ran a list of the countries interested in the fighter. They include Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Venezuela, Egypt, Zimbabwe, Indonesia, Iran, Congo, Nigeria, Sudan, Turkey, the Philippines and Sri Lanka. Some of them have operated Chinese aircraft long enough, which, coupled with the traditionally low price might tip the scale.

14.0 8.5 5.1 24.0 6,450 9,100 12,700 3,600 2,300 1,700 1,350 1.6 16,700 8 1,800 3,000 RD-93 1x8,300

Drawing by Andrey Yurgenson

class of 10-t supersonic fighters is not that tough, to boot. For instance, the Indian LCA Tejas is still in its flight trials, with its export prospect being somewhat doubtful, while the Swedish Gripen, which has conquered several European markets and the South African one, is clearly in a different price category. Against this backdrop, the developer of the “first Chinese fighter”, the FC-1 (which, however, has not landed any orders from PLAAF), may well count on its slice of the

Length, m Wingspan, m Height, m Wing area, m2 Empty weight, kg Normal takeoff weight, kg Maximum takeoff weight, kg Warload, kg Fuel load (w/o drop tanks), kg Maximum speed, km/h Maximum low-level speed, km/h Mach Service ceiling, m Limit operating g-load, g Combat radius (w/o drop tanks), km Ferry range (on three drop tanks), km Engine Full-afterburning takeoff thrust, kgf

JF-17 Thunder fighter from the 26st squadron, Pakistani Air Force

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Tikhomirov’s AESA ready for flight tests under upgrade Carrierborne pilots training JF-17: 21st-century MiG-21 from Chengdu [p.42] november...

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Tikhomirov’s AESA ready for flight tests under upgrade Carrierborne pilots training JF-17: 21st-century MiG-21 from Chengdu [p.42] november...

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