Yakovlev, formerly known as Irkut, recently carried out the first flight of a new version of the Superjet 100 regional airliner that features domestically produced systems and components. Redesignated the SJ-100, the new model will allow Yakovlev to continue to produce the regional jet despite an embargo on foreign-sourced components imposed by the U.S. and the European Union after Russia began its “special military operation” in Ukraine in 2022.
Rostec, the corporate parent of Yakovlev and a range of other state-owned aerospace and defense companies in Russia, reported that the test flight went smoothly.
The first SJ-100 prototype is powered by the Superjet 100’s existing PowerJet SaM146 engine, but Yakovlev plans to install Russian-made Aviadvigatel PD-8 turbofans on the second test aircraft and future production aircraft. The PD-8 is still in development and undergoing testing.
Rostec says it is sourcing 40 new components from Russian manufacturers, including a new avionics system, landing gear, an auxiliary power unit, and air conditioning systems, among others.
The full story is available on FlightGlobal at this link.
We expect deliveries of the SJ-100 to Russian airlines to start around 2025, but the in-service date will move to the right depending on how many technical issues turn up during the flight test program. The certification process by the Russian government is unlikely to be strict; the country needs a new version of the Superjet now that the supply of parts and maintenance services by Western manufacturers has been cut off. And we don’t expect the SJ-100 to be produced in large numbers – the Russian airline industry is relatively small. However, regional airline service remains a critical part of the Russian transport system. The Putin regime has no choice but to continue to support the program.
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