Sukhoi Civil Aircraft claims it is catching up on the type certification schedule for its Superjet 100 regional jet ahead of launching aircraft serial production next year.

Speaking at the Far East investment forum, Sukhoi Holdings CEO Mikhail Pogosyan says the first operable prototype has chalked up more than 60h of flying during 22 flights since 19 May when it took off from KnAAPO factory's airfield for the first time.

Two more aircraft are scheduled to join the programme in October. A second flight-test prototype is undergoing power-on and hardware airworthiness checks with assembly work on a second ground-test prototype nearing completion.

KnAAPO has also completed attaching wings to fuselages and begun installing interior systems on aircraft 95004 and 95005 that are slated to become airborne in December and January respectively.

Originally the manufacturer planned to deliver the first prototype from Komsomolsk-on-Amur to Zhukovski for post-assembly calibration trials at locally-based aviation test facilities of TsAGI and Gromov institutes.

But the project management has opted to carry them out in at an in-house test centre. Citing a more convenient infrastructure and close proximity to the Superjet assembly line, a company spokesman says: "At this point we deem it a better solution."

Citing the latest study of global demand for regional aircraft, Pogosyan has confirmed Sukhoi's goal to produce and sell up to 1,200 Superjets by 2025.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news