Kaveri engine's maiden flight test successful

The engine running right from take-off to landing, flew for a period of over one hour up to at an altitude of 6000 m at a speed of 0.6 mach in its maiden flight. The engine control, engine performance and engine health during the flight were found to be excellent during the test on Wednesday.

With this test, the Kaveri Engine is said to have completed a major milestone of the development programme.

Another 50-60 test flights will be carried out in the coming months to mature the engine in terms of reliability, safety and airworthiness. These trials would pave the way for further flight trials of Kaveri Engine with a fighter aircraft.

A team of 20 scientists from DRDO have been working along with GFRI for these trials. An existing IL-76 aircraft was modified as a Flying Test Bed for this trial, with Kaveri engine replacing one of the four engines of the aircraft.

The modifications included instrumentation required for trials as well as integration of mechanical, electrical and fuel system. The engine was controlled by the pilot from the cockpit.

A number of taxi trials were carried out with Kaveri Engine integrated with the aircraft, before this maiden flight. The engine data was recorded in the aircraft as well as transmitted to ground station by telemetry.

The Kaveri engine is being developed for fighter aircraft, at Gas Turbine Research Establishment, a DRDO laboratory based in Bangalore with the active support of several other DRDO labs, academic institutions and industry partners.

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