Sukhoi Civil Aircraft Corporation (SCAC) is about to bring to the market a new member of the Sukhoi Superjet (SSJ) family of regional airliners. The SSJ 100B-100 version combines the baseline airframe with the more powerful SaM146-1S18 engines originally designed for the long-range SSJ 100LR modification. Thrust augmentation to 7.311 tons improves the aircraft’s hot-and-high performance, as requested by an unnamed customer, the SCAC officials commented. The new powerplant cuts the airliner’s takeoff distance by 10%, but the range will remain the same at 3048 km.
The PowerJet SaM146-1S18 will be offered as a powerplant option. According to SSJ 100 Chief Engineer Vladimir Lavrov, the new aircraft model has completed the flight test program. The Interstate Aviation Committee will issue a type certificate in the coming weeks, with EASA validation expected to follow before year-end.
The new model is best suited for operation in China and India, as well as at European airports with short strips, a SCAC spokesman notes. To streamline sales to China, due to be launched in 2016, SCAC is planning to team up with Chinese partners in establishing a leasing company. The latter is expected to sell up to 100 aircraft.
The only current European SSJ 100 customer is Belgium’s VLM Airlines, which has signed a letter of intent for one SSJ 100LR. The delivery, however, has since been postponed “by a year or two” due to difficulties in receiving an EASA approval for short-runway operations.
The SSJ 100’s hot-and-high performance has been field-tested by the Mexican low-cost carrier Interjet, which currently operates 16 of the type and has 14 more on order.
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