Indian trainer aircraft begins spin testing

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Hindustan Aeronautics has started the spin testing of its HTT 40 basic trainer aircraft with the successful execution of  two turn spins and their recoveries.

The spin testing is being conducted by two test pilots, Group Captain (Retired) KK Venugopal, in the cockpit and Group Captain S Chaki, in the rear and started on November 9. Stall testing on the HTT 40 has already been completed.

Hindustan Aeronautics (HAL) began developing the HTT 40 in August 2013 and the aircraft made its first flight in May 2016. The 2-person HTT-40  is 10.5m (34ft) long with a wingspan of 11m (36ft) and is powered by a Honeywell Garrett TPE331-12B turboprop engine

The HTT 40 has a top speed of 400km/h (249mph), a range of 1,000km (621 miles) and a ceiling of 6,000 m (20,000 ft).

The Indian Air Force is to buy 70 HTT 40s from HAL.

Chairman and managing director of HAL, R. Madhavan 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.”

HAL’s Aircraft Research and Design Centre (ARDC) had also conducted wind tunnel testing and mathematical model analyses to arrive at the spin characteristics of the aircraft. The results of these studies are being validated with the spin testing.

According to Arup Chatterjee, director of engineering and R&D at HAL said, “The preliminary service qualitative requirements (PSQR) test points have been met and the spin completion is the last metric which needs to be accomplished before the aircraft enters service.”

Chatterjee added that the HTT 40 is exceeding its PSQR on most fronts. Permission to start production of the HTT 40 is expected to be granted by the end of this year.

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Ben has worked all of his career as a journalist and now editor, covering almost all aspects of technology, engineering and industry. In the last 16 years he has written on subjects from nuclear submarines and autonomous cars to future design and manufacturing technologies and commercial aviation. Latterly editor of a leading engineering magazine, he brings an eye for a great story and lots of experience to the team.

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