New Russian aircraft takes to the skies

A new Russian regional jet has successfully completed its maiden flight. The Sukhoi Superjet 100 has been designed and built by Sukhoi Civil Aircraft Company (SCAC).

During the flight at Komsomolsk-on-Amur, the SSJ 100 took off, flew over the take-off runway the expected four times at different heights up to 1,200 metres, completed a box pattern span and successfully landed. The pilot crew confirmed the high thrust-to-weight ratio and the sustainable operation of the aircraft engines and main systems.

The debut flight was captained by Alexander Yablontsev, chief pilot of SCAC, with test pilot Leonid Chikunov. The crew spent 1 hour and 5 minutes in flight.

"Today is the most important day for us ̵1; we have virtually beaten the air with our own wings," said Mikhail Pogosyan, director general of Sukhoi Holding. "It has been a long way. The result we achieved ̵1; the debut of the Sukhoi Superjet 100 in the sky ̵1; is really inspiring for aviators. At the same time, there are a lot of things to do - certification tests are ahead. I am sure that we will win and the aircraft will be a success."

SSAC has a strategic partnership with Alenia Aeronautica, which holds a stake of 25 per cent plus one share in the company. Giovanni Bertolone, chief executive officer of Alenia Aeronautica, said that participating in the SSJ 100 programme was a great opportunity to capitalise on the company's technical and commercial know-how in the regional jet market.

"The strategic investment in SCAC and the partnership with Sukhoi in the new joint venture Superjet International for the sales and after sales of the new aircraft, will bring long-term success in a high competitive market," he added.

Image: The Sukhoi Superjet 100

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