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Sabrelet-fitted Superjet needs repair after test accident

Sukhoi’s winglet-fitted Superjet 100 test aircraft has sustained damage during a landing incident in Moscow.

The aircraft – registered 97006 – had been conducting a sortie from Zhukovsky airfield’s Gromov flight-test institute, in order to assess aerodynamic performance.

As the twinjet prepared to land, following the test’s conclusion, the crew discovered that the right-hand main landing-gear had not fully deployed.

The crew opted to burn fuel and the Superjet subsequently landed, although Sukhoi’s civil aircraft division has not detailed whether the partially-deployed gear collapsed and, if so, whether the starboard engine contacted the runway.

It simply states that the jet “safely” landed and none of the three crew members – a test pilot, engineer and certification specialist – was injured. The test pilot had logged over 3,000h on Superjets.

Sukhoi does admit, however, that the aircraft is to be “repaired for further flights” having sustained minor damage.

Investigators are to probe the circumstances of the accident.

A number of in-service Superjets have previously experienced issues with landing-gear retraction.

Flight Fleets Analyzer lists the five-year old aircraft, serial number 95032, as having been retained by Sukhoi in early 2013. It has carried out 294 test flights and accumulated 535h.

Sukhoi has been using the aircraft to perform testing of its new ‘sabrelet’ blended wing-tips, which are intended to enhance efficiency and save over 2.5% in fuel burn on a 500nm sector.

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