The MC-21 medium-range passenger aircraft made its first flight with a domestically-made engine, Rostec state corporation, the holding company of Russian aerospace and defence entities announced today.
“On December 15, 2020, at the airfield of the Irkutsk Aviation Plant, the first flight of the MC-21-310 aircraft, equipped with new Russian PD-14 engines, took place. "The flight duration was 1 hour 25 minutes," Rostec reported.
The MC-21 jetliner with the PD-14 engine has been re-designated as MC-21-310 while the earlier designation was MC-21-300 which flew with the Pratt & Whitney (P & W) engine.
PD-14 engine was developed by the United Engine Corporation (UEC) in a record time after the earlier PW1400G Engine was denied to it under U.S. sanctions imposed in 2017 against Russian Aerospace entities.
The aircraft carries the MC- 0012 number meaning it is the twelfth prototype. Other prototypes are flying with the P & W engine.
In addition to the engine, the aircraft also has parts of its wings and fuselage made of composites made by a domestic firm as the U.S. government denied it permission to acquire composite material from an American firm.
The first flight signals that Rostec has been able to bypass U.S. santions and bring its aerospace projects back on track after a significant delay caused by having to manufacture parts and systems denied to it under the sanctions regime.
Rostec Head, Sergei Chemezov, said, "This flight is the result of the unification of two major programs of the civil aircraft industry in Russia - the MS-21 aircraft and the PD-14 engine. Through the efforts of scientists, designers, engineers, workers, a new generation airliner is being created, which returns our country to the top league of world aviation."
Minister of Industry and Trade Denis Manturov noted, “We have formed a new generation of designers and production workers - and now we are seeing the fruits of the labor of tens of thousands of people who worked at the enterprises of the aircraft engine-building industry in order for this flight to take place,” said Manturov, whose words are quoted in the report of Rostec.