Ulianovsk, 17 October. The test-bed registration RA-64048, based on a series Tupolev Tu-204 airframe, took to the air for the first time after one of its Perm PS-90A engines was replaced by an experimental PS-90A2. Various checks at different thrust settings were carried out. After one hour 25 minutes in the air, the test-bed landed safely. The engine demonstrated stable operation at all stages of the flight.
The PS-90A2 is a unified twin-spool turbofan engine with high bypass ratio, mixing of inner and outer flows, thrust reverser in the outer contour and extensive noise-suppression system. It is a further evolution of the PS-90A series with further improved performance to match the world’s highest standards. The PS-90A2 and PS-90A are interchangeable. Compared to the current production version, the PS-90A2 has lifecycle cost decreased by 35% with simultaneous increase in reliability by 50 to 100%.
Ecological parameters of the newer version, including noise and emission levels, meet stringent standards that ICAO and other international organizations are planning to impose in future. The PS-90A2 will enable airlines to operate Tu-204 aircraft under ETOPS, including 180-minute stretches of long-haul flights over sea surface. The PS-90A2 requires twice less man-hours in operation than the PS-90A.
The improved engine is less inclined to fire, after replacement of a few older fuel system elements with newer ones operated pneumatically. The PS-90A2 will pass certification to the AP-33 aviation standards, harmonized with FAR Part 33 and JAR33.
The PS-90A2 is selected for the Tu-204SM narrow body medium haul airliner. The aircraft is being developed by United Aircraft Corporation under the state-funded program entitled “Improvement of the Tu-204-300, deep modernization of the Tu-204 (Tu-204SM), increase in reliability and operational performance, use of achievements in upgrading Tu-204/214 fleet, improvement of systems and subassemblies of Tu-204/214 family aircraft”.
This effort is being made in accordance with the Federal program “Development of Russian civil aviation in 2002-2010 and up to 2015”. UAC was awarded respective contract in December 2008 by the Ministry of industry and trade. Sergei Galperin, deputy general director at UAC – Civil Airplanes, and deputy general designer at Tupolev design house, leads the Tu-204SM effort.
The work is now focusing on improving aircraft design and manufacturing technologies so as to improve reliability of aircraft systems and their safe-fault features, to cut manufacturing and direct operational costs. Tu-204SM ground and flight tests shall be completed in November 2010. Certification is due in December 2010. Deliveries shall start in June 2011. Backlog is 20 airframes, including five ordered by launch customer Iran Airtour via Ilyushin Finance Co. (a member in UAC). At MAKS’2009 the leasing company and Antant-Soyuz, the airline of the Moscow City Government, signed contract for 15 Tu-204SM aircraft with deliveries in 2011-2012.