For the first time in two months Yak-130 operational trainer will perform a flight in Moscow Region in order to test the upgraded control system. The flight is scheduled for late June 2014, ITAR-TASS reports with reference to Deputy CEO of Yakovlev design bureau on flight testing, Hero of Russia, Roman Taskaev.
On April 15th 2014 Yak-130 operational trainer crashed near Akhtubinsk. The jet was operated by Borisoglebsk training center of the Air Force Academy named after N.E. Zhukovsky and Y.A. Gagarin. The crew comprising two pilots has managed to eject, but one of the pilots died. The same day Yak-130 fleet was grounded in accordance with the decision made by the Commander-in-Chief of the Russian air forces. The crash occurred due to control system failure.
"At present we are taking deliveries of additional software connected with the jet’s equipment. At the same time we are taking necessary measures following the results of the crash. I think that Yak-130 will start performing flights in late June", - Taskaev said.
He explained that the permission to resume flights of Yak-130 jets owned by Yakovlev design bureau (these are not serial aircraft) will be given by the Chief Designer of Yakovlev Company. The testing will be carried out at the airfield of Gromov Flight Research Institute (Zhukovsky, Moscow Region).
"I think it will take about a week for us to make sure that the modifications did not affect the control system’s functionality", - Taskaev noted.
When the testing of new software by Yakovlev’s pilots will be completed, the air forces will start their own testing in order to resume flights of Yak-130 fleet.
"In early July the flights should be resumed, the Commander-in-Chief said. Yak-130 will continue its flight testing in Akhtubinsk. The software of the rest jets operated by Russian air forces will be upgraded and their flights will be resumed after testing", - chief pilot of Yakovlav design bureau said.
The development of Yak-130 operational trainer (NATO reporting name: Mitten) was started in early 1990s by Yakovlev design bureau. The jet performed its maiden flight in 1996; in 2002 it was selected as the primary trainer of the Russian air forces. Yak-130 is a very “smart” jet designed for training of inexperienced pilots. Many of its systems have quadruple redundancy, which allows decreasing the failure probability.
The serial production of Yak-130 aircraft is being carried out by Irkutsk Aviation Plant. 48 jets have been delivered to Russian air forces so far; they are operated by the 209th Borisoglebsk airbase (Voronezh Region). A total of 65 vehicles of the type must be delivered to the customer under the existing contracts; the cost of one jet is around 550 million rubles. Moreover, 16 Yak-130s were delivered to Algeria in 2011.