Russia’s Air Register of International Aviation Committee (AMRAK) in late June awarded the Tupolev Tu-334 regional jet AP-25 certification, allowing revenue operation of the RSK MiG/Aviant-built 102-seat jets after five years of intermittent test flying. The approval, which hypothetically parallels FAR Part 25, came just two months after RSK MiG director Vladimir Toryanin threatened to shut down program development for lack of funds.
For years, airshow crowds have been wowed by the superlative demonstrations of Russian fighters, but now visitors here at Le Bourget can sample the delights of flying such aircraft themselves. On the Sukhoi stand (Hall 4, Stand G15) a Su-35 flight simulator creates a realistic atmosphere not to be taken lightly by those prone to air sickness.
Sukhoi has secured its first Western customer for the Superjet 100 regional jet with a $283 million order for 10 firm aircraft from Italian low-cost carrier ItAli Airlines. The deal covers options for a further 10 aircraft.
Sukhoi plans to supply 30-odd combat aircraft this year and sell more than $1.5 billion worth of its products, said Mikhail Pogosyan, the company’s general director. He added that various models of the Su-30 aircraft will be delivered to Malaysia, Algeria and Venezuela. In addition, aircraft component packages will be supplied for ongoing licensed production of Su-30MKI fighters in India.
CMC Electronics has signed a contract with Lufthansa for cockpit upgrades to the CMA-9000 flight management system in the German air carrier’s fleet of 14 Airbus A300-600s. The retrofit product includes a larger navigation database, improved performance optimization and increased datalink capability, according to CMC. The initial installations of the dual CMA-9000s by Lufthansa Technik are scheduled to begin in early 2009.
Antonov | An-148
Despite the standoff between Boeing and the Russian government over import tax relief for U.S.-made commercial jets, the Chicago-based manufacturer insists that its participation in the Sukhoi-led Russian Regional Jet has not yet run its course. A spokeswoman told AIN that Boeing remains under contract with Sukhoi until the end of this year, and that the lack of progress in talks with the government bears no relationship to the U.S.
Sukhoi is continuing its feasibility studies on the S-21, a supersonic business jet, but officials do not give consistent answers to the question of when the aircraft will appear. “At very best,” said Andrei Ilyin, general director of Sukhoi Civil Aircraft, “an SSBJ would not appear before 2010 or 2012.”
SSBJ UPDATE: Elsewhere in this issue (“In The Works,” page 78) is word of Sukhoi’s continuing work on feasibility studies on the S-21, a supersonic business jet that, according to the company’s general director of civil aircraft, could not appear before 2010 or 2012.
The technical board composed of Sukhoi Civil Aircraft, Boeing and associate member Snecma officially launched the Russian Regional Jet program last month following the completion of a full review of the project’s fourth development phase. The decision arose from meetings between Sukhoi and Boeing executives, who discussed details related to marketing and sales, design and development, production, certification and customer support issues.