Czech Republic-based aircraft manufacturing company Aero Vodochody has completed the first flight of the first pre-serial L-39NG trainer and light attack aircraft.
With serial number 7001, the new generation of the Czech jet trainer was piloted by Aero’s test pilots David Jahoda and Vladimír Továrek.
During the course of the maiden flight, the trainer was subjected to certain development tests.
The aircraft took off from the runway, reached an altitude of around 5,000ft and flew for 26 minutes before landing at Aero Vodochody.
The L-39NG has been declared fit to flight and to start certification tests. According to Aero Vodochody, the aircraft has flown in a configuration similar to that of serial aircraft, including final upgraded wet wing and air inlets.
The development represents a key milestone in the achievement of L-39NG’s type certification by the end of this year.
Aero Vodochody Aerospace president and CEO Giuseppe Giordo said: “This pre-series first flight represents a significant milestone sending an important message to our customers: We can fully fulfil our commitments and we will be ready to deliver the first aircraft in the first quarter of 2020.
“The programme is running according to the plan showing its full maturity thanks to a great commitment of Aero, Czech institutions and partners of the project.”
The single-engine two-seater L-39NG is designed as a unified, comprehensive training system for modern air forces and is based on the aerodynamic concept of the current L-39 with latest technologies and equipment.
It features an advanced cockpit design that includes a full glass cockpit, an advanced on-board virtual training system, and a helmet-mounted display.
Last year, Aero signed agreements with the Republic of Senegal, Portuguese firm SkyTech and American private company RSW for the delivery of the aircraft.
The company is also finalising a deal with LOM Praha, the Czech state military company and pilot training provider.