Two test flights of Russia's NK-93 ducted fan prototype engine have been completed on board an Ilyushin Il-76 flying test bed, and the engine could be ready for first deliveries in 2009.
The Il-76 made its first flight with the NK-93 installed in the No 2 position on 18 May. During the two flights completed so far, the aerodynamic performance in auto rotating mode has been assessed and it has been established that the engine does not produce an increase in drag. "The first two flights were devoted to assessment of stability and controllability of the test bed with the NK-93 on it," says Sergei Tresvyatsky, general director at Kuznetsov's Scientific and Technical Complex. "Everything went well so far, opening the way for power-on trials."
Tresvyatsky says that "between 12 and 18 months" are needed to complete NK-93 flight testing and development, and the KAPO plant has already prepared tooling. "If everything goes on well, first deliverable NK-93 come off line in 2009," he says.