On Monday 9th December 2019, the maiden flight of the L-39NG aircraft with MSN 7004 took place at Aero Vodochody. This aircraft will be the first pre-serial aircraft. Aero company pilots Vladimír Továrek and Vytautas Požela flew for 32 minutes.
Aircraft with MSN 7004 is a second flying L-39NG. “Today, we mark another important milestone of the L-39NG project. The 7004 has joined as planned the 7001 aircraft and the technology demonstrator aircraft (2626) in the flight programme now, so we can speed up the flight-testing according to our plan and get the advanced trainer certification in the third quarter of 2020. I am proud that Aero was able to produce and assemble three prototype aircraft and one pre-serial aircraft in less than 2 years.
“The 7004 is also the first pre-serial aircraft which has been built according to serial aircraft final specification and provides additional opportunities for target customers to testfly and experience the outstanding capabilities, performance and flight characteristics of that next generation training and light attack aircraft. Worthwhile mentioning, that the L-39NG is one of few trainer development programs in the world that will have three aircrafts flying at the same time for flight test and customer demos,” said Dieter John, President & CEO of Aero Vodochody aerospace.
The flight was observed by several guests including representatives of Penta Investment Group, which is 100% shareholder of Aero Vodochody, and management of OMNIPOL company, a strategic partner to Aero Vodochody in the L-39NG project. “The timetable is in line with the established plan, which is essential for us. Today's flight of aircraft 7004 is an important milestone not only for the whole project, but above all for our further dealings with our business partners and potential customers," said Jiří Podpěra, President of OMNIPOL.
Four L-39NGs completed
Aero has until now produced four L-39NG aircraft. Three prototypes – one dedicated to flight tests, one to static tests and one for fatigue tests. The fatigue one has been finished just couple of days ago, the fuselage has already been transported to the VZLÚ (Czech Aerospace Research Centre), the wing should follow in couple of weeks and the testing will start in the beginning of 2020. Static prototype has been passing static testing programme since June 2019 and shall last until mid-2020.
Both flying aircraft, the prototype with MSN 7001 and the pre-serial 7004 aircraft are dedicated to intensive flight tests. Some of the tests are performed also on the technological demonstrator – aircraft with fuselage number 2626, which is former L-39C trainer equipped by new engine, avionics and other modern technologies used in L-39NG.
Aero wants to complete certification for the advanced trainer, which will cover also the basic trainer, in the third quarter of 2020. The 7001 aircraft will then continue in certification for light attack aircraft that should be completed in the second half of 2021.
The L-39NG aircraft is a modern and effective light jet capable to serve in a role of light attack and/or unified, comprehensive training system for modern air forces. The L-39NG is based on the aerodynamic concept of the current L-39 with optimized features to reduce resistance and increase efficiency and utilizes the latest technologies and equipment.
Power is provided by the modern FJ44-4M engine supplied with the TAP Blue engine support service to ensure unprecedented airworthiness and predictable maintenance costs. The aircraft's avionics are prepared to train future pilots of 4th and 5th generation aircraft and can be tailored to the customer's requirements. The L-39NG is equipped with five hard-points for weapons.
The aircraft also features a broad range of simulation technologies, including the integration into high-tech tactical simulation centres with the goal to increase training efficiency. Strategic partner of the L-39NG project is the Czech company OMNIPOL by having 50% of share and financial contribution in the project.
AERO Vodochody Aerospace
AERO Vodochody Aerospace a.s. focuses on the design, manufacturing maintenance, overhaul and upgrade of military and civil aircraft and is the largest aviation manufacturer in the Czech Republic and one of the oldest aerospace companies worldwide. In the field of military aircraft, Aero has been a reliable long-term partner to many of the world's air forces and it has a strong position on the market of military training and light combat aircraft.
With a track record of 11.000 aircraft produced over the last 100 years, a broad coverage of 60 military operators and 15 demo teams, a huge existing fleet of L-39 Albatrosses and with a brand-new aircraft, the L-39NG now, Aero is maintaining its positioning as a leader in the jet training market. In the field of civil aviation, Aero collaborates with many of the world's largest manufacturers in a diverse range of projects. More recently, Aero became a full partner in several risk-sharing programmes, taking responsibility not only for the production of structures but also for development.
OMNIPOL is a Prague headquartered investment and trading group with more than eighty-five years of experience in both the domestic international markets. The company provides cutting-edge solutions for the defence and security sectors. The entire OMNIPOL Group employs more than 1,400 professionals, of which over 200 employees are involved in research and development of new products.