HAL restarts flight testing of intermediate jet trainer

Defense

The IJT is conceived to be an intermediate jet aircraft to help rookie Indian Air Force pilots transition smoothly from basic trainers to advance jet trainers like the Hawk 132.

Shared News: Published: April 19, 2019 1:16:32 am
“HAL recommenced flight testing of modified IJT from its Bengaluru facilities. The flight was flawless and its success is an important step towards the IJT programme,” the aerospace company said Thursday. (Picture for representation purpose)
Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) has carried out a successful flight test of an intermediate jet trainer (IJT) – a revival of an indigenous aircraft programme abandoned three years ago due to technical problems.

The IJT is conceived to be an intermediate jet aircraft to help rookie Indian Air Force pilots transition smoothly from basic trainers to advance jet trainers like the Hawk 132.

“HAL recommenced flight testing of modified IJT from its Bengaluru facilities. The flight was flawless and its success is an important step towards the IJT programme,” the aerospace company said Thursday.

The IJT, also known as the Hindustan Jet Trainer 36 (HJT36), is an aircraft indigenously designed and developed by HAL to replace its own Kiran jet trainers, which were made from 1964 to 1989 and are now being retired from IAF service.

The flight testing of the IJT HJT36, meant to train IAF pilots in the second stage of their training programme, was put on hold after the aircraft encountered problems “in spin test flights in the year 2016”.

“HAL continued its R&D (research and development) efforts and undertook modification of IJT LSP4 aircraft based on extensive and comprehensive wind tunnel studies,” HAL chairman R Madhavan said.

Earlier this year, at the Aero India 2019, HAL officials had indicated that the IJT would fly again by April.



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