Indigenous civil aircraft in about five years

“The project has entered the preliminary design phase. The first flight would be carried out in about four-and-a-half years while the completion of the certification process will take at least six years. We can enter series production in the about eight years’ time,” A R Upadhya, former NAL director and member of the committee said here on Wednesday. He was delivering the keynote address at the fifth symposium on Applied Aerodynamics and Design of Aerospace Vehicles (Sarod-2011).

He said air traffic has been witnessing a steady growth in the country and there would be a demand for 350 civil aircraft in India by 2030.

The feasibility report of the project was submitted earlier this year by the 16-member high power committee, constituted by the government to prepare feasibility report on the development of the aircraft.

The report stated that the baseline design for the project is a 90 seater twin turbofan engine powered aircraft and the estimated cost of the project is Rs 7,555 crore of which Rs 4,355 crore would be for the design and development and the remaining Rs 3,200 crore for the development phase. The promoters are now looking at enhancing its design range to 3,200 km and also its seating capacity to 110, Upadhya disclosed.

“We are considering increasing the range from the current 2,500 km to 3,200 km so that it can be used for international operations if needed. Options are open to use both standard configuration or a long range configuration with increase in capacity in wing area,” he said.

Upadhya said only a negligible two per cent of the carbon di oxide emissions come from the aviation sector globally. The industry is committed for reduction of the emissions, he said.

Air Force station commanders meet
A two-day Station Commanders’ Conference began at the Bangalore Air Force Training Command on Wednesday.

Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal N A K Browne will participate in the conference on Thursday.

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