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28 May, 2010 06:48

Superjet engines slice and dice birds

Superjet engines slice and dice birds

Engine manufacturers for the Russian mid-range airliner Superjet 100 have completed all tests necessary for certification. The final trial was a simulation of an encounter with a flock of birds.

An SaM146 engine fitted on a test rack was fed four birds weighing 0.7 kilos each one after another. After such an incident thrust should not drop by more than 25% for an engine to pass the test. The jet lost just 2% of the thrust and thus could be operated in an all modes without problems.

Earlier SaM146 producers, Russian Saturn and French Snecma, bombarded it with ice and bigger birds to prove its reliability and efficiency. Thursday’s test is the last one necessary for certification by the European Aviation Safety Agency, which will clear it for use in the EU.

The Sukhoi Superjet is the first aircraft designed in modern Russia from scratch. The project also involves several producers from other countries. The plane made its maiden flight in May 2008.