HAL’s basic trainer aircraft begins ‘spin test’
HAL’s basic trainer aircraft HTT 40 began the challenging ‘spin test’ by successfully doing two-turn spins and recovering with appropriate controls.
Two test pilots undertook the first spin entry testing on Friday. The aircraft was piloted by Gp Capt (Retd) KK Venugopal, DGM-Test Pilot (FW), and Gp Capt S Chaki (Retd), Senior Test Pilot (FW). The stall testing is already complete.
‘Boost to HAL’
R Madhavan, CMD, HAL, said the successful start of the spin testing gives a boost to HAL and also restores credibility of HAL in successfully designing a spin-worthy aircraft.
The spin testing is the most crucial and challenging aspect of flight testing of any aircraft development programme. HAL’s Aircraft Research and Design Centre (ARDC) had conducted extensive wind tunnel testing and mathematical model analyses to arrive at the spin characteristics of the aircraft.
The entire study is put to test during those first few moments of the spin test.
According Arup Chatterjee, Director (Engineering and R&D), the PSQR test points have been met and the spin completion is the last metric which needs to be accomplished before the aircraft enters service.
In fact, HTT 40 exceeds the Preliminary Services Qualitative Requirements (PSQR) on most fronts and offers a technologically advanced product.
The project started its detail design in August 2013 with internal funding and made its way to the spin test in just five years. The Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) has approved procurement of 70 Basic Trainer Aircraft from HAL.
Madhavan congratulated the design and project teams for the timely start of the critical test phase. The project has moved at a break-neck speed and stuck to committed milestones, thereby setting new benchmarks in project execution and management.
The production clearance for HTT 40 is expected to be accorded by the end of this year.