A trip from the site of last year’s RAA annual convention in Memphis to the venue chosen for this year’s edition, held in Indianapolis last month, covers barely 450 miles, but the psychological distance the industry has traveled over the past 12 months seems more like light years.
Sukhoi Superjet 100
Russia’s Sukhoi Civil Aircraft flew the new Superjet 100 for the first time on May 19 from the company’s main assembly site in Komsomolsk-on-Amur. The milestone came some six months after the company had originally hoped to stage the maiden voyage of the 95-seat regional jet, scheduled now for delivery to launch customer Aeroflot next spring.
Thales announced it is aiming to become a major supplier of avionics systems to the business aviation market, challenging the likes of Honeywell and Rockwell Collins, and achieving a “very significant” increase in revenue.
Russia’s Sukhoi Civil Aircraft flew the new Superjet 100 for the first time on May 19 from the company’s main assembly site in the Far East city of Komsomolsk-on-Amur. The milestone came some six months after the company had originally hoped to stage the maiden voyage of the 95-seat regional jet, scheduled now for delivery to launch customer Aeroflot next spring.
Boeing and Russia’s privately owned East Line signed an agreement to establish Russia Technique at Moscow’s Domodedovo Airport for maintenance of non-Russian-made airplanes. East Line plans to invest between $40- and $45 million in the project over the next 30 months. The facility will start work on Boeing 737s in about seven months, according to Boeing.
At the end of June, Sukhoi announced the creation of the “new” Sukhoi Aviation Corporation, with the consolidation of a number of design and manufacturing companies, including Moscow-based OKB Sukhogo (the Sukhoi design bureau) and the Irkutsk, Novosibirsk, Komsomolsk-na-Amure and Taganrog aircraft plants.
Four of five test aircraft planned for the Continental flight-test program are now flying, with the fourth (dedicated to proving the reliability and maintainability of the interior in flight) having made its first flight on April 5. By the middle of last month the four airplanes had accumulated more than 641 hr on 398 flights.
Russia’s Sukhoi expects its Superjet 100 regional jet to fly for the first time next month and likely not enter domestic airline service for at least another year, program officials told AIN this week. That puts the troubled program some six months behind the schedule Sukhoi published last fall.
The Powerjet SaM146 turbofan chosen to power the Sukhoi Superjet 100 finished the first phase of flight testing on the program’s Ilyushin Il-76LL testbed early last month, logging more than 30 flying hours during 14 flights, according to director of SaM146 flight testing Yuri Basyuk.
Sukhoi Civil Aircraft hopes to make the first engine runs on its PowerJet SaM146-equipped Superjet 100 this week as it awaits authorization to begin flight tests that it now says could take place in about a month’s time. A second aircraft, now undergoing completion, could fly before June, according to Sukhoi.