The second prototype of the Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) HTT 40 basic trainer conducted its first flight in Bangalore today.
The aircraft was flown by Group Captain S. Venugopal and Group Captain C. Subramanyam. HAL conducted tests of the landing gear, maximum speed, maximum altitude and maximum G in the first flight itself today.
In a flight duration of slightly over one hour, the pilots took the aircraft to a height of 20,000 feet (6 km) and a speed of 240 knots (450 km/hour), turning the aircraft to its permitted limit of 4.5G, according to sources.
It is unusual for a second prototype to conducts its first flight so soon after the first aircraft. The first HTT 40 first flew slightly less than a year ago, on May 31, 2016.
HAL plans to conduct stall and spin tests on the two aircraft over the next few months and use the data to finalize any modifications that may be required to be implemented on the aircraft.
The third prototype will incorporate any such modifications and will become equivalent to an LSP-1 (Limited Series Production) aircraft.
In fact, according to current plans, HAL’s production team will be tasked with building this third prototype, which is expected to take place some time early next year.
Find out more about the HTT 40 in this video.