Russia’s United Engine Corporation (UEC) has supplied two AL-55I engines to India to power the country’s HJT-36 trainer aircraft.
"The creation of the HJT-36 trainer aircraft is at the final stage of flight certification tests, which should confirm the compliance of the HJT-36 aircraft with the requirements of the Indian Air Force (IAF). Power plants with an increased resource will be used to complete this stage,” Yuri Shmotin, UEC’s General Designer was quoted as saying by the Russian media.
The engines have been supplied to India’s Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) for integration onto the aircraft.
"There are also plans to increase resource indicators for 16 AL-55I engines that have already been supplied to HAL. In addition, significant work has already been done to organize the licensed production of AL-55I engines at the enterprises of the HAL Corporation," added Shmotin.
According to UEC, AL-55I NPO Saturn engine is a next-generation double-circuit turbojet engine built to power combat-training and light combat aircraft.
HAL’s Intermediate Jet Trainer (IJT) christened as HJT-36 is designed to replace IAF’s ageing fleet of KIRAN Jet Trainer aircraft for Stage II training of its pilots. IJT will be fitted with AL-55i Jet engines produced in house at Engine Division Koraput.
IJT incorporates the simplicity necessary for ease of conversion from Basic Piston Trainer and the sophistication required for quick conversion to the complexities of an Advanced Jet Trainer. The jet can reach speeds of upto 750 kmph.
“After successful acceptance tests at the test bench in the presence of a customer representative, the engines were shipped to HAL Corporation. The development of the HJT-36 trainer aircraft is in the final stages of flight certification tests, which should confirm that the HJT-36 aircraft meets the requirements of the Indian Air Force.
Power plants with increased resource will be used to complete this stage. There are also plans to increase service life for 16 AL-55I engines already supplied to HAL Corporation earlier. In addition, significant work has already been done to organize the licensed production of AL-55I engines at the enterprises of the HAL corporation,” said Yury Shmotin, Deputy General Director - General Designer of UEC.
AL-55I is a bypass turbojet engine. Developed on order of the Indian corporation HAL for the HJT-36 trainer aircraft. The engine has a maximum thrust rate of 1760 kgf. To date, the design life of the AL-55I engine is 1200 hours.