Sukhoi defends efforts to overcome Superjet snags

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Sukhoi’s civil aircraft division has stressed that it is working to overcome technical problems with its Superjet 100, after Russian authorities expressed concern over incidents involving the type.

The airframer claims slat jamming during approaches to land – recently traced to the freezing of accumulated moisture in humid conditions – are the central issue.

“Owing to the increased number of [Superjets] in service, there is an increase of incidents, mainly linked to the wing mechanism,” it states.

Sukhoi has already introduced a temporary procedural change to the type’s operating manual, under which pilots reconfigure the flaps during approach if the slats fail to deploy. This enables the crew to reduce airspeed and perform a safe landing.

Changes are also being made to drainage point maintenance processes to ensure the absence of moisture in slat mechanisms, adds Sukhoi, while the manufacturer is securing approval for new avionics software designed to resolve slat deployment problems.

Russia’s Interstate Aviation Committee had highlighted a rising number of incidents involving Superjets, with an apparent lack of results despite the investigative efforts of various agencies.

Some 20 Superjets have been introduced to service with carriers including Aeroflot, Yakutia, Lao Central Airlines, Sky Aviation and Interjet.