The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) issued a type certificate for the Sukhoi Superjet 100-95 on February 3, paving the way for the Russian jet’s operation by airlines in Western Europe and in countries that use EASA regulations as their reference standard. As a result, the Superjet 100 becomes the first ever Russian type categorized as a “large airplane” to achieve EASA CS-25 certification.
The EASA certificate, in effect, represents a validation of the ticket already issued by Commonwealth of Independent States’ Interstate Aviation Committee Aviation Register (IAC AR) in January 2011. So far six SSJ100s—five flying for Aeroflot and a single airplane for Armenian flag carrier Armavia—operate under the CIS authority. Plans call for Italy’s Blue Panorama—the Western European launch customer—to operate the airplane under EASA certification. It holds a firm order for eight of the regional jets and options on another four and plans to take delivery of its first airplane next year.
The European validation started after IAC AR certification application in 2004 and went through four different phases in parallel with the Russian certification process: Familiarization, Agreement of Certification Programs, Compliance Determination and Final Project Report. The European validation program also included several dedicated flight and ground tests. In particular the EASA pilots underwent “many” sessions on the so-called “electronic bird” (Sukhoi Civil Aircraft Corporation’s integrated simulator and rig for the SSJ100) and participated in 45 certification flights lasting about 70 flight hours.
The ground tests covered, among other items, the ultimate pressure load of the fuselage, the bird strike of the front upper cockpit panel, the broken-tire strike of the lower hatch cover of the wing fuel tank and the fire-resistance of the composite flap. Ten working groups analyzed, analyzed and agreed to 84 certification review items and 60 certification action items, while closing more than 500 actions and questions received from the certification authorities.
“The job we have done together is really great,” said Vladimir Prisyazhnyuk, president of Sukhoi Civil Aircraft (SCAC). “We sincerely thank our colleagues from the EASA and IAC AR for their big support. The European certification is a key milestone in getting worldwide recognition of our aircraft, which will open up new perspectives for the Sukhoi Superjet 100 in the international markets.”
The EASA planned to hand over the type certificate to Sukhoi Civil Aircraft officially on February 24 at IAC AR headquarters in Moscow.