Sukhoi Su-33 - Development - Testing

Testing

The first Su-27K prototype, piloted by Viktor Pugachyov, made its maiden flight on 17 August 1987 at the NITKA facility; the second followed on 22 December. Flight tests continued at NITKA, where MiG-29Ks and Su-27Ks demonstrated and validated the feasibility of ski-jump operations. The pilots also practised no-flare landings before making an actual landing on a carrier deck. It was another two years before the Tbilisi, subsequently renamed Admiral Kuznetsov, left the shipyard.

Viktor Pugachyov, piloting the second Su-27K, became the first Russian to conventionally land aboard an aircraft carrier on 1 November 1989. It was found that the carrier's jet blast deflectors were too close to the engine nozzles when raised at an angle of 60°; thus an improvised solution held the deflectors at 45°. However, when the aircraft was in front of it for longer than the maximum six seconds, the shield's water pipes exploded. The pilot, Pugachyov, reduced engine throttle, accidentally causing the detents (blocks used to restrain aircraft from accelerating) to retract and the fighter to move forwards. The aircraft was quickly stopped; Pugachyov later took off without the use of blast deflectors or detents. Since then, a Kamov Ka-27PS search-and-rescue helicopter was flown close to the carrier in the event of an accident.

During the following three-week period, 227 sorties were amassed, along with 35 deck landings. Flight testing continued afterwards, and on 26 September 1991, naval pilots began testing the Su-27K; by 1994, it had successfully passed the State Acceptance Trials. During 1990–1991, seven production aircraft were rolled out.

Read more about this topic:  Sukhoi Su-33, Development

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Famous quotes containing the word testing:

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