L-410NG accumulates over 300 hours of flight trials

L-410NG accumulates over 300 hours of flight trials Aircraft Industries demonstrated its L-410NG at ILA-2016 airshow (Photo by Fyodor Borisov / Transport-photo.com)

Despite declining production volumes of its main product, the 19-seat L-410UVP-E20 twin-engine turboprop, Aircraft Industries, a Czech OEM owned by the Russian Ural Mining and Metallurgical Company, is still intending to certify its thoroughly upgraded version, the L-410NG, in 2017. Provided the process is completed successfully, the first serial L-410NG will take to the skies in 2018.

According to Russian Aviation Insider’s data, since the first flight in 2015 the aircraft’s prototype with tail number OK-NGA has accumulated over 300 hours of total flight time. This aircraft is involved in certification program. EASA certification is expected in 2017.

By now the aircraft’s stability and handling characteristics have been evaluated, its operational envelope and speeds have been confirmed. Stalling and fluttering, as well as a number of other specific tests have been completed.

Aircraft systems aboard L-410NG, including the avionics, have been tested as well. The prototype has also successfully completed several ground tests, including testing of high-energy field interference with the electronic equipment, the landing gear’s impact dumping efficiency etc.

Static testing of the L-410NG’s airfoil is still underway, as well as landing gear fatigue testing. They are scheduled to be completed before the end of the year. The wing fatigue testing has just started.

As announced in 2015, compared to the L-410UVP-E20, the new version’s cruise speed has increased by 5%, from 398 to 417 km/h, and its range has extended 78% from 1,520 to 2,700 km and maximum duration has more than doubled, from 5.1 to 11 hours. The aircraft’s MTOW and useful load have increased 6% to 7000 kg, and 22% to 2200 kg, respectively. The performance improvement is mostly due to replacing the old 800-hp H80-200 engines with the new 850-hp H85-200, produced by GE Aviation Czech.

Another upgrade direction is a new wing design with auxiliary fuel tanks. Share of composite materials in the L-410NG’s structures has increased, and the aircraft incorporates the glass cockpit concept.

Visually it will be easy to tell the new version from the original by its longer nose section. The new nose offers additional room for storage, which doubles the volume of the baggage compartment, to 2.98 cubic meters.

Before completing the certification procedures the OEM does not intend to build additional L-410NG prototypes. Once the certification is complete, the serial production of the model may be launched in 2018.

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