India’s Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) has successfully demonstrated the Intermediate Jet Trainer’s (IJT) capability to perform six-turn spins.
Carried out in Bengaluru, Karnataka, the spin flight test was performed by group captain HV Thakur (retired) and group captain A Menon (retired).
Wing commander M Patel (retired) and group captain K K Venugopal (retired) served as the test director and safety pilot in command at telemetry, respectively.
During the demonstration, the aircraft conducted both left-sided and right-sided six-turn spins.
HAL chairman and managing director R Madhavan said that the company ‘is capable of designing products that can meet any requirement of Indian Armed Forces’ with the ‘right resources and backing’.
Prior to achieving the six-turn spin milestone, the IJT was put through several flight tests.
The company will now carry out further flights to help reach full spin certification.
Designed and developed by HAL, the aircraft will replace the Indian Air Force (IAF) Kiran aircraft fleet and be used for IAF pilots’ Stage II training.
The aircraft has already demonstrated its capabilities with regards to speed, altitude, satisfactory stall characteristics, limited armament capability and load factor.
The IJT programme was temporarily suspended in 2016 when the aircraft moved off from its controlled flight.
Following this, HAL announced that it will proceed with the programme using its internal resources.
The company undertook a modification project to redesign the aircraft for the spin test. It moved the vertical tail aft and extended the rudder surface, as well as integrated a new anti-spin parachute system (ASPS).
Flight testing recommenced in April 2019 and the company started the spin flight testing of the IJT in November 2020.