Irkut has carried out the maiden flight of the MC-21-310, the version of the twinjet powered by Russian-built Aviadvigatel PD-14 engines.
The flight – with aircraft number 73055 – took place from Irkutsk aviation plant’s airfield on 15 December and lasted about 1h 25min.
It was crewed by two test pilots and an engineer, and the flight involved initial powerplant checks as well as tests on the stability of the aircraft.
The sortie follows Russian trade and industry minister Denis Manturov’s claims that the aircraft would fly by the end of this year.
“Today we see the result of a consistent state policy in the development of high-tech industries,” he says, adding that this has “created a new generation of designers and production workers”.
Manturov adds that the MC-21-310’s first flight is the “fruits of labour from tens of thousands of people” working in the engine-manufacturing facilities.
State technology firm Rostec’s general director, Sergei Chemezov, adds that the occasion marks the “unification” of two major Russian civil aviation programmes, the MC-21 and PD-14.
The MC-21 had previously only flown with the rival Pratt & Whitney PW1400G engine. This variant of the twinjet is desginated the -300.
Chemezov says the MC-21 will “returns our country to the top league of world aviation”.
United Engine Corporation’s Aviadvigatel managing director, Alexander Inozemtsev, says the development of the PD-14 is a “breakthrough” for Russian powerplant manufacturing.
“For the first time in many years, a new, entirely-Russian engine has appeared,” he says.
Federal air transport regulator Rosaviatsia certified the PD-14 in 2018. The engine has a take-off thrust of 30,800lb (137kN) and a fan diameter of 1.9m.
Aviadvigatel says the specific fuel consumption of the engine is 10-15% lower than that of previous-generation engines, owing to the use of innovative technology and materials.