Thursday, January 25, 2018

Maiden test flight of Saras prototype in Bengaluru

Bengaluru: A prototype of Saras flew for about 40 minutes over here on Wednesday for the first time in nearly a decade, kindling hopes of revival of a homegrown civil aircraft programme in the country.

The Saras (PT-1N) plane was piloted by Wing Commander B Panicker and UP Singh, pilots of the Aircraft and Systems Testing Establishment (ASTE), the Indian Air Force’s elite school for test pilots.

“The aircraft designed and developed by the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research’s National Aerospace Laboratories (NAL) took off at 11 a.m. from Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd airport and flew at a maximum height of 8,500 feet in a textbook flight,” a statement from Bengaluru-based CSIR-NAL said.

The performance of the aircraft would be assessed over 20 test flights and the data collected during the flights would be used to finalise the design of the production version of the aircraft, it said.

The 14-seater civil aircraft programme, named after the Indian crane Saras, was conceived in the 1990s as a joint project between India and Russia.
24/01/18 Indileak